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If you think Layered Baklava is good, wait until you try the rolled variety. Mabrooma or Burma Baklava is on another level of crispiness and makes for a perfect bite sized treat, recipe inside
2020.09.11 19:06 ObiEffIf you think Layered Baklava is good, wait until you try the rolled variety. Mabrooma or Burma Baklava is on another level of crispiness and makes for a perfect bite sized treat, recipe inside
No Middle Eastern dessert is more iconic than Baklava, the first time you lay eyes on it, it draws you in. The crispy pastry layers, the nuts, the syrup, it all looks too good to be real, but thankfully in this case the cake is not a lie. I have yet to come across a dessert that rivals Baklava for crispiness and when you combine it with softened nut layers and smooth clotted cream, it really is a textural sensation. Unfortunately Baklava can get a bad rep for being too sweet or difficult and fiddly to make, I'm here to tell you that it isn't difficult to make, and only bad baklava tastes excessively sweet. Here's what mine looked like
What is Mabrooma Baklava
Baklava is to Middle Eastern food, what pastries are to french food. Think of it like a classification of many different derivative dishes, most of which fall under the usual definition of Baklava; layered phyllo (Filo) pastry sheets with nuts sandwiched between them. It's eaten throughout the Middle East as well as Greece, Azerbaijan and many other countries in eastern Europe and western Asia. Just like you have Patisseries who sell all kinds of tantalizing pastries and desserts, you also have Halawani's (this name may be exclusive to Egypt) who specialize in the selling of Baklava. It's a normal site to walk into a Baklava store and see 20+ different varieties for sale, from the classic layered pistachio baklava, and clotted cream filled ones, to rolled pistachio filled konafa and small birds nests. I always end up walking out of baklava stores with an assorted box filled with numerous different types, each differing from the other in shape, size, filling and texture. In this post I'll be focusing on my favorite kind of baklava, Mabrooma or Burma Baklava, which differs from most other kinds in shape and preparation method. Rather than layering multiple sheets of Phyllo pastry, a single sheet is laminated, covered in nuts and then rolled into a cylinder. It's then sliced into bite sized pieces before baking. This technique results in a crazy good textural experience because unlike normal baklava, the nuts are actually incorporated into the lamination and end up between every single layer. Once cut to size it makes the perfect bite sized treat, in Egypt it's common to get Mabrooma Baklava the thickness of a pinky finger and in Turkey it's usually made a bit thicker. You could use pistachios, walnuts, almonds or your favorite nut in this and it will turn out great.
Baklava has a complicated and well fought over history, with numerous countries claiming to be the origin or claiming to have invented its modern form. One claim is that a precursor dish to Baklava was made in the Assyrian Empire as far back as the 8th century BC, where layers of thin dough were stretched over chopped nuts then coated in honey. The story then goes that the Ancient Greeks fell in love with the dish and invented phyllo dough (which means leaf to signify the thinness) in the process. Other claims state that the ancient Greeks invented the dish themselves. In Al Baghdadis 13th century cookbook he describes a dish Lauzinaq, which was made from almond paste wrapped in pastry ("as thin as grasshoppers' wings"), this dish lends credence to the Assyrian claim, but it's also likely that both origin stories are true. Eventually the dish landed in the kitchen of the ottoman empire where it evolved and flourished, the reach of the empire grew far and wide and so did the reach of Baklava. If you overlay a map of the former ottoman empire, you would see that baklava is eaten in nearly all the countries it invaded. It's also said that copious amounts of baklava were served to Janissaries during Ramadan in a ceremony called the baklava procession as a sign of the sultans favor, and the acceptance of the Baklava by the Janissaries indicated they were satisfied with their pay and conditions (the Janissaries had some crazy culinary traditions such as never abandoning a pot on the battlefield).
In any baklava the key flavor comes from the nuts that are used. The common choices are Pistachio, Walnut and Almond, so those are going to be the largest contributor to flavor in the Baklava. Getting high quality nuts is essentially, you do not want any burnt, or over roasted flavors in your baklava as there's no place to hide. My personal favorite is using toasted walnuts, as the flavor is mellow and less intense than pistachios or almonds. If you are going to use pistachios, get antep pistachios, these have a natural bright green color and an almost citrusy flavor from their oil. The phyllo pastry has a very neutral flavor with a slight baked aroma when it has been cooked. The phyllo will also taste quite buttery, owing to the butter that is brushed between the different layers The rest of the flavor is imparted to the Baklava via the syrup that is poured over it. This is either made from honey (quite rare) or a simple syrup which is infused with spices. Depending which part of the world you're from, you'll use different spices in your syrup. In Greece it's common to use Cloves, Nutmeg and of course cinnamon. In Turkey the syrup is usually spiced with just cinnamon. In other parts of the Middle East you will find Cardamom, Rose water, Orange blossom water and even saffron used to infuse the syrup, but In my recipe I go for the basic cinnamon syrup to allow the nuts flavor to really shine through.
I highly recommend doing a 50:50 split between pistachios and walnuts for your baklava, you'll get two different flavors and be able to decide which one you like more. They also look slightly different as the pistachio's oil tints the phyllo pastry to a slight green color. On the subject of pistachios, you can use any variety of pistachios but I would look into getting some Antep pistachios as they have a super distinctive green color and they taste quite a bit brighter than California or Iranian pistachios. These are the ones you see in photos with the almost fake looking green color, they really are worth it.
For the Sugar Syrup:
250g (1 1/4 Cup) granulated sugar 150g (2/3 Cup) water 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice 1 Cinnamon scroll or 1/4 Tsp Cinnamon powder
To make the Baklava
500g (1lb) fresh Phyllo (Filo) dough 250g Butter 200g antep pistachios or Walnuts, though I did a 50:50 split Not an ingredient, but you'll need a thin cylindrical rod or dowel to roll these, it makes the process infinitely easier. Check the notes for ideas on what you can use. You can do this without the dowel, but it will be harder to get the roll started and compress it
To make the sugar syrup
Add the sugar, water and lemon to a pot on high heat and bring to a boil, avoid stirring the pot as this can cause the sugar to crystallize
When the mixture is boiling, swirl the pot to ensure all the sugar has dissolved. If some formed on the top of the syrup then skim it off. When the sugar has dissolved then turn the heat down to low
Add the cinnamon scroll to the syrup and simmer for 10 minutes until it has thickened slightly
Remove from the heat and pour into a jug or bowl to cool
To make clarified butter:
Add your butter to a pot on high heat and let it melt completely
Boil the butter for a couple of minutes until the milk solids separate (literally looks like milk, you'll know it when you see it), and then pour it out into a jug. The milk solids will have sunk to the bottom of the pot, so when you're pouring, do it slowly and make sure not to pour them into the jug
After half an hour pour into another jug or vessel to remove any remaining milk solids
To prepare the nuts
You have two courses of action here, you can mince them by hand, or you can chop them in a food processor. The end goal here is to make Pistachio or Walnut meal, so you want tiny pieces of nuts, but not a powder. Think couscous or bulgur grains. If you're chopping them by hand, it will take some time, but just keep folding your nuts back into a pile and chopping till you get an even texture. If you're using a food processor, pulse it on and off till you get the desired texture, be careful because if you over process the nuts, the oils will separate out and you'll end up with nut butter.
To assemble the Baklava:
Grease the base and walls of a baking dish (30cm * 20 cm) with some of the clarified butter
Place a sheet of phyllo on a cutting board and cut in half (mine measured 35cm * 25cm, if yours are smaller you may not need to do this), then brush one half with clarified butter all the way to the edges. Make sure to coat all edges and corners of the sheet otherwise they will crack when rolling
Place the other half sheet on top of the buttered one to laminate, then massage out any air pockets or wrinkles till perfectly flat. If there are any holes or tears in your sheets, try to rotate the sheet so you don't have two tears lying on top of each other
Brush clarified butter to the top of the sheet you just applied until fully coated, and once again make sure to get the edges as well
Turn the sheet on its long side and sprinkle 2-3 teaspoons of nuts over the sheet. Try to keep the bottom quarter of the sheet relatively clean as this will make it easier to roll. Pick out any large pieces of nuts that fall onto the sheet as these can tear the phyllo
With a roll of pastry formed on the rod, place a fist on either side of it and slide the two sides towards each other. Think of it like trying to compress a spring. Do it until the pastry has been compressed to about 2/3rds its original size
Once compressed, twist the pastry gently to loosen it from the rod, then slide it off of one end. Place it inside the baking sheet and bunch up any excess on the sheet to one side
Repeat steps 2-8 until the baking sheet is full
Line up all your pastry cylinders so they run across the narrow side of the dish, and make sure they are lined up evenly.
Use a sharp knife to trim any excess pastry that is sticking upright on the dish. You'll likely have extra on all the different rolls as it's hard to compress them uniformly. Remove the excess pastry from the dish
You now need to pre cut the baklawa as it will be too crispy to cut later. Use a ruler to get even measurements. Measure 1 cm from the walls of your dish (at the start and end of your baklawa cylinders), and cut a line through all the different pastry cylinders there so you nice and clean edges on all the pieces of baklawa. Next divide the remaining length into three or 4 pieces and slice through them as well.
Brush the top of the cut baklava with more clarified butter
Preheat an oven to 160c or 320f, and bake the baklava in there for one hour
Remove from the oven when golden brown all over, and immediately pour your syrup over the baklava. It should sizzle as it hits the pan and starts to be absorbed into the hot pastry
Allow to cool for a minimum of half an hour, but it will taste better if you let it sit overnight (make sure to cover it with plastic wrap otherwise the pastry will go stale)
To decorate, remove any trimmings from the edges. Drop more chopped pistachio in a line onto each piece of baklava
Serve and enjoy
Notes and Tips
If you have clarified butter or ghee, you can use that instead of butter as it's already been clarified to remove the milk solids. The reason you don't use butter is that the milk in it can burn quite easily while baking the baklava and you'll end up with a burnt butter flavor which we want to avoid.
Store bought phyllo can be very hit and miss, so I recommend buying two different brands even if you only need one pack. You could always make borek or spanakopita with the extra. Try find packs with a recent expiry date
I found packs of chopped pistachios at a Turkish supermarket which was perfect for the Baklava, maybe you can try look for it as it'll save you a lot of time
I used a 3mm wooden dowel as my rod which I got from a hardware store, you can also find them at arts and crafts stores. If you can't find that, you could use any other thing wooden or metal cylinder. Some people suggest using the rod part of a clothes hanger
2020.09.11 08:37 tifu-SSITIFU By buying one of the hottest hot sauce bottles on the planet
This happened a few hours ago and I'm currently sitting here with a bottle of the sauce. Quick background on me: my dad is a marine and retired after 25 years of service. He lives in a tropical locale and works from home in the winter. He is currently working on a farm in the midwestern states just managing the farm and my dad in the summer. Both parents expect nothing to happen with either of them. I just got a new Netflix account a few months ago. I just got a brand new TV and a bunch of shit to do. I'm a single guy and realized after watching 30 Days 3 and The Hunger Games that I am not in the mood to date. My tastes have always been there, but I just didn't feel the same way. So I scoured the macbooks, the computers, electronics. Almost anything that was near a pool and hunted. I finally found a box of the hottest hot sauce in the world: the Infinity Rod. I went to my local supermarket and browsed the bottles in my basket. In the meat section. I couldn't find any. So I quickly grabbed one of the bottles with the most scoville heat. It was a beautiful box, the color was vibrant and the liquid was opaque. In the back of it was a handwritten note: "EVG 12.6% Alcohol by volume". I tore it open and looked at the contents. It read: >EVG That's the hottest sauce on the planet - the Infinity Rod. The bottle was empty. I just about died from laughter. I didn't feel it, but the note made me want to finish the bottle. I'm not usually the extrovert. But I'm also not a fan of spicy food, and the note made me want to vomit. So I've never seen this bottle of sauce. I've only ever seen the note on the bottle. My mind is racing. I'm thinking how to apologize. I am thinking how to thank the person who bought me the bottle. I'm now on the verge of a panic attack. I want to throw up. There's a billion things I'm thinking. I don't know how to apologize. I don't know how to thank them. I don't even know if I should drink from the bottle. The bottle didn't leave the counter unattended. It was not in some weird spot on the shelf. It was not in some random place. I don't know how to explain the fact that it was there. I was so freaking drunk that I was nearly fainting. I don't think I'll be able to apologize. Even if I do, I don't want to drink it. I'm so drunk that I don't even know what to say. I'm so drunk that I can't even remember what I was thinking. There's no way to apologize. There's no way to explain what happened - I can't even tell you how drunk I was. I feel like a fucking idiot. I'm so fucking drunk that I can't even talk. I don't know what to do. Sorry for the long post. I'm an idiot. TLDR: I bought the hottest sauce in the world on Amazon. The person who bought me the bottle knew what it was and I drank it. I'm an idiot. I'm so fucking drunk that I can't even talk. Sorry for the long post.
2020.09.09 02:40 IronMermaiden32[F4M] NJ,USA Are you the Edward Snowden to my CIA?
No, I don't know Snookie. Yes, we do all drive like maniacs in the Garden State. Now that THAT'S out of the way... I'm single, not looking to mingle any time soon (hello, COVID!), but possibly in the future. 5'7'' ginger with heterochromia, though my eyes change color (creep my post history for pics), average build though I could def lose some weight, and I work in the Automotive Industry, though my background is in IT Project Management. Interests: * Music (punk, hardcore, metal, but also tons of 90s music and some stuff my Dad listened to when he got high in HS) * Tattoos (I have more than a couple, so if that bothers you... Sorry?) * Collecting taxidermy (this is the part where you close out of the post, right?) * Crochet (Gotta perfect that Gam-Gam vibe by the time I'm Gam-Gam age) * Rollerskating (Just started back up again during Quarantine after not being able to skate due to an injury back in 2012) * Reading (favorite authors: Walt Whitman, Truman Capote, Carl Sagan, Aristotle, Plato, Stephen Hawking, ... but trashy Romance novels are my suuuuper guilty pleasure) * Building mechanical keyboards (Just started getting into it, I think I have spent upwards of $600 on items from MassDrop, scuse me DROP, in the last 3 months... that won't get here until November) * Cars (Grew up around mechanics, drag racers, hot rod restorers, muscle car collectors, JDM enthusiasts (guilty), 1/4 track racing idiots... whom I love) * Food (I will try almost anything at least once. The only food I dislike are onions, sweet potatoes, and star anise... but also fuck peanut butter- No, I'm not allergic) * Sarcasm (I love dirty, dry humor) * Democratic Socialism (Pretty sure I lost some of you with that one if the taxidermy comment didn't) * My 2 cats (They're awesome. Even if you're a dog person, you'd love them, I promise) * Horror movies, action movies, foreign films, Marvel (hubba hubba Captain America... That's America's ass!), etc * Art (Perfect date is going to a museum and wandering around together talking about what's in front of our eyes instead of our exes, amiright?) * Learning Piano, though my background is as a 12 year percussionist. I used to go "bang bang" on the drummies. * SocceFootball... NY Red Bulls and Manchester United are my teams (though I've never played Soccer because I'm sports-inept) *Pancakes. 'Nuff said. You know way too much about me at this point so I'm just gonna go into what I dislike... Things I hate: * Working out. It sucks. I have a treadmill and I try to force myself on it at least 3 times a week but it usually ends up being once a week. Maybe rollerskating makes up for that? * People who don't use their blinketurn signal while driving. It's a flick of your finger. Why not just fucking do it?! * Nu metal. Don't even try to convince me... No me gusta. * Commercials. Do these companies REALLY think I'll buy their product by the third time they've repeated their commercial while I'm trying to watch 'What We Do In The Shadows' on Hulu? Fuck right off, buddy. * Right wing Republicans... Sorry boys, but this is something I'm reeeeeally not gonna budge on. If I haven't scared you away, feel free to message me. I'm looking to connect with someone who's also single, has a similar wit to them, thinks Dad jokes are hilarious, is 30+ but under 40 (Sorry, you sexy-ass Silver Fox Dads), and can keep up with my ridiculous banter. I have kik but I prefer discord. Thanks for reading! EDIT: I'm going to bed soon like a responsible 32 year old would, so if I don't answer you, I apologize in advance.
2020.09.08 23:10 Xzaith_ProductionsMata-Nui: Part 1 - Chapter 24: The Toa Kaita
A snap made the Manas recoil. The ice dome in front of them was beginning to break apart rapidly. An intense light came from within, blinding them, causing them to move further apart. With the crunch of ice, the dome exploded into pieces, leaving the two shapeless towers to rise above them. Takua, from the ground, placed his hand in front of his eyes, trying not to let the strong light blind him. He saw in both towers of light an aspect similar to that of the Toa, moving, rising. The one to his left, the one formed by Tahu, Onua, and Pohatu, was the first to have a more defined shape. He raised one of the two pairs of arms above his head, stretching his back lazily as he gave a low growl. He opened his eyes and a huge smile formed on the still blurred features. _ Are you ready!? Here comes what you've all been waiting for! _ he crouched at the right time so that a Manas didn't collide with him. _ The ovations don't stop! _ made a gesture pointing to the rest of Rahi _ Everyone gets up with expectation and the audience goes crazy! He imitated the sound that a crowd would make cheering him with one pair of their hands over his mouth while with the other two he threw small metal hoops with six small sharp blades coming out from different points around them. As he threw them, he placed them one after the other, forming a corridor to the Mana Ko. Two other Rahis jumped towards him, one grabbed with all four arms and slammed him to the ground, while the other kicked in the bottom and sent it flying towards the ceiling, taking several seconds to fall back. _ Give a big applause to the only one, the inimitable! Drum roll... _ he launched himself down the corridor he had formed. Great explosions of fire came out of each ring until they reached the Mana Ko. _ Akamai! With the last blast of fire, his shape had been fully defined. It was slightly taller than the Mana-Ko, but less wide. His body was large and muscular, with more than one vein very marked down his arms. Rising from the ground quickly, he placed six pieces of a hexagonal-shaped stick together and struck the Rahi so hard that even, with its size, it sent it flying across the room, putting one of his hands like a visor as he rested his weapon on his shoulder, watching as he landed in a great cloud of dust in the distance. _ A new record. He had stayed in that position for several seconds, not really focusing on any point. After a moment, he placed his hand under the chin, looking at where he thought his partner should be with an exaggerated expression of confusion, rubbing his chin as he stopped the advance of another Manas by placing the metal rod on it and leaning on it, making the Rahi's wheels screech against the ground, trying to get closer. It moved its little arms from side to side, trying to hit the base of the weapon as a result. _ Why would I've done that...? Wairuga? Why did I hit that Ra-? _ he stopped, seeing the shapeless figure that shone a few meters from him. _ Oh, she's still being built _ he sighed, starting to bite his nails as he looked around, not much interested in how little he could see in the darkness. Hearing her name, the second tower of light accelerated her appearance, beginning to have a more defined shape. Noticing Takua's presence, she crouches down to look at him with her huge three eyes, intimidating the little Matoran, which could barely move; his head was still spinning and his right eye was crying uncontrollably. Seeing this, Wairuga sits up and finishes forming. Her figure was slim and elegant, a huge ponytail lowered from her head to the bottom of her legs, swinging like a pendulum with every little movement. With a posture of superiority, she looked around, seeing the Manas, an unconscious Nui-Rama on the ground and the marks of a fierce fight all around. Placing a hand on her waist, she turns melodramatic towards the Matoran, not even lowering her head an inch to look at him at all, causing her great ponytail to circle around her, ending in inertia encircling her waist before get back behind your back. _ You ... _ she says with an icy voice before Takua interrupts her, pointing at her back. _ Watch out! _ the Matoran announced, making the Toa Kaita react. She pulled a sword from her hip sheath. The blade was small and curved, the most notable being the large hilt that didn't seem to fit at all. With a flick of the wrist, she began to unfold it, dropping the curved blade and engaging a crescent blade, thus transforming it into a spear. With speed and precision, she pierced the Manas, letting it dangle from her spear as she held it up to bring it close to her face for a better check of the creature. _ Manas... I see. This one is regenerating even with my spear going through it. They must have the cooling systems close by. Just have to destroy them _ she turned her head towards Takua _ Don't you think? She saw a shocked expression on the Matoran, holding his mouth open and one hand on his head, trying to hold back the pain. Once he realized what was happening, he nodded, not quite sure what else to do. Before the Toa Kaita could continue speaking, Akamai was running towards her shouting her name as he launched himself into her arms with laughter. They both turned a couple of times while laughing. Even though they were both very similar in stature, Akamai stopped forward, resting his head on his partner's chest. _ Wairuga, you're here! Have you missed me? Hub!? Have you missed me !? Me!? Am I the one you've missed!? The Toa Kaita's icy expression cracked completely into a wide, sweet smile, caressing her companion's face and head with one hand, ending in a cheek pinch. _ Not a bit. To which Akamai replied with a chuckle: _ Liar. They both parted and Wairuga stretched, waking her muscles. She shook her head slightly with a slight sigh that only her partner could perceive. _ Are you okay? This time it took much longer than usual? _ Yes, I'm ok. The Toa's emotions are still getting to me. They were worried about something, an enormous danger. _ You're right, I'm worrie too. Where are we, by the way? Is it Karda-Nui again? There were a few seconds of silence between the two, moments in which they had become completely static, so much so that Takua got up, still clutching, worried, about to call their attention to react. _ I don't remember anything _ Wairuga announced, looking at her partner. _ Me neither _ did the same, covering his mouth with one hand. _ Something very serious must have happened with the Toa. They must have lost their memories at some point and now it affects us. _ What can...? _ Akamai muttered before noticing the little Chronicler staring at them. _ A Matoran. Akamai jumped on the ground rumbling site before squatting down lowering his head as far as he can to catch up with the Matoran, again drawing a huge, animated smile. _ It's you! _ He said before tilting his head somewhat confused, scratching his cheek. _ Who are you? You seem familiar to me but I can't... Before the Toa Kaita could continue, the Matoran responded. _ I am Takua, Chronicler. _ I think I remember you, yes. Mimicking Akamai, Wairuga sits on the ground, putting her legs to one side and supporting her upper body with one arm while surveying Takua from top to bottom with the other. _ What happened to you, Takua, Chronicler? Why are you so badly hurt? Why are you holding your head so tightly? _ There was a big fight between the Matoran and the Rahi of Makuta. And... my head hurts a lot, I don't know why. Both Toa Kaita looked at each other for long seconds, repeating the name "Makuta" in low. _ Has a Makuta attacked you? _ Akamai asked before his partner interrupted him. _ Let me help you with that pain, Takua, Chronicler. Placing one of her large fingers on the Matoran's forehead and another on the top of his head, she made his intense headache disappear in the blink of an eye. But, something else happened that the Chronicler couldn't see. For an instant, his colors, those of his entire body, went from red and blue to white and yellow. _ Oooh, I get it... Waituga looked at him seriously, putting a finger to her lips to make him look silent. _ Tell me, how are you feeling, Takua, Chronicler? The Matoran, still somewhat shocked, rubbed his temple, nodding his head before answering. _ I feel much better, thank you. And please just call me "Takua". Wairuga nods, standing up as she draped the large ponytail over her shoulder and groomed it a bit, turning on her heel to check around by returning to her starting position. _ Akamai, a Mana Ko is approaching from your right. The cooling systems are in the outer circle, can you do something about it? _ Do you protect Takua? _ the other Toa Kaita nodded. _ Very good! Leave it to me! The Toa Kaita of Valor did a couple of squats and started running towards the ends of the huge hall, using the power of a Kakama to get there as soon as possible. _ Okay, Takua. I need you to update me. Takua stood still for a moment, Wairuga's towering figure encased in a silver-colored partial armor that glowed with a faint tinkle even in the darkness. A huge shield formed on her right arm as her main weapon, the spear, this time with the end replaced by a double-bladed ax, rested in her other hand. Meanwhile, Akamai, ran through the fields of refrigerators. Large capsule-shaped machinery not much larger than the Toa Kaita themselves, separated from each other by the same distance creating a symmetrical forest of those machines. The Toa Kaita was switching between his five weapons with each refrigerator that broke: Huge claws appeared with their amber-colored partial armor cutting them into pieces. If he needed some to be longer than they already were, he would create a lava flow to increase their size. His next weapon was three hexagonal-headed nunchucks that could form the rod he had used previously, being able to place very heavy spheres at each end, joined by a chain in between that could be stretched and transformed into a mace. His last weapon was a medium-sized sword, at least for him, that he hardly used. When he did, it seemed strange to handle and covered it with a long blanket of lava; he then absorbed all the heat from the molten stone and handled the result like a huge sword twice his size. He had to use a combination of all four of his arms to be able to take a slash, which was devastating if he managed to hit his target. Takua, meanwhile, finished telling all the events that he remembered from the last days to bring the Toa Kaita up to date. The Manas around her, as Akamai completed his mission, dimmed like machines, taking several seconds for their eyes to relight and slowly leaving, too weak to even be a bother. Akamai returned, covered in sweat with a satisfied half smile, removing his armor. _ Mission accomplished. _ Nice job. Takua just brought me up to date on the situation. _ Great, something I should know? _ Mata Nui is in danger and the Makuta down here is bad _ she had put it in very simple words, making Takua feel a little bad for having given so many details to the Toa Kaita a few moments ago. Her partner nodded, stroking his chin as if trying to internalize a lot of complex information by saying a couple of times "I see, I see...". She then squatted down and patted the Ta-Matoran's head. _ Good work, Chronicler. You have fulfilled your missions with courage and honor. He couldn't help but blush and thank her. They didn't have much time to rest, as a strong red light began to appear from one of the walls of the great room, alerting them. A small figure created a long shadow from the huge hatch, walking toward the threshold with a hesitant and erratic step. _ Toa? _ began with a lump in the throat. _ Where are you? You... have come to help me, right? From the other side, Takua, stood up, taking a few steps towards the light. _ Ahkmou? _ Should she be here? _ Akamai asked, squatting again to speak face to face with the Matoran. _ Of course not. She disappeared days ago... _ That Makuta must have taken her _ Wairuga deduced walking towards the Po-Matoran. _ Don't worry, we are here! We will get you out of this place! A roar that didn't seem to come from anywhere made Ahkmou step back, hunched over, looking up, watching the hatch begin to descend. _ Toa, help me! The Toa Kaita reacted quickly. _ Akamai! _ Ready! Pulling out her shield, Wairuga replicated Kopaka's movements and propped one of his knees on the ground as Akamai jumped up onto his shield. With the full force of the Toa Kaita of Wisdom, she pushed her companion towards the closing hatch. Seeing that he would not arrive in time, decided to use the rings again, placed two on his lower arms and launched another two in the direction of Ahkmou, both of them in the threshold. The second pair of arms disappeared and reappeared in the rings, holding the door open before it closed. Leaving only a small opening. Taking advantage of the momentum, he dropped to the ground and slid under the hatch, clutching the Po-Matoran in his arms as he held the door, feeling his strength begin to fail. Takua felt the ground around him suddenly wetter and saw that a small layer of water was forming around the Toa Kaita as she rubbed her forehead. _ What am I going to do with him... _ she wondered with some irritation. She reached down to catch Takua in her arms and they both rose above the rapidly rising water as Wairuga created an ice shelf beneath her feet. The water around them became an incessant wave that pushed them towards the hatch, barely open. The Toa Kaita lay down on the ice shelf and they sped past Akamai, getting back up and absorbing both the ice and water back at her, leaving Takua on the ground beside her. The gate slammed shut behind them, breaking Akamai's pair of rings, causing him to snort with sorrow. _ They were my favorites... _ Is the Matoran okay? _ Wairuga asked, approaching quickly, making each step resonate with an echo. Her partner set her on the ground, letting her groom herself, adjusting her clothes while looking at both Toa Kaita. _ Who are you? _ and, before they could introduce themselves, she saw Takua. _ Chronicler? You've come... A noise that had been in the background during that moment was even more noticeable. The three of them turned their heads to where the noise was coming from, seeing, in the middle of the room, floating, turning as if they were living in a whirlwind, piles of pieces of a pure black color. Takua could make out a loose arm and jaw flying through the wreckage. His heart sank in such a way that his core began to flicker erratically, taking several steps back, trying to hide behind the Toa Kaita, seeking their protection. _ Hm, nice trick _ Wairuga muttered suspiciously. _ It's a very bad taste _ Akamai commented back as he crossed his four arms at the same time. Both Toa Kaita watched the whirlwind of pieces intently until Wairuga spoke. _ You see it? They are not bumping into each other. It is not a simple trick, it follows a very intrinsic pattern. I can hardly... _ She stopped, trying to analyze it in more detail. Akamai then stomped his foot and came closer, starting to scream. _ Come on, get out! Hiding yourself will only anger us! Wairuga stands next to him, looking at him for a moment while raising an eyebrow, to which he replied with a shrug, replying: _ Maybe that makes them come out of hiding. Silence came suddenly. It had been so abrupt that both Toa Kaita looked at the swarm of black pieces, which had stopped short for a few moments. Wairuga stood guard, placing a hand on the hilt of her sword. _ Get ready, Akamai. We do not know what are they capable of. _ Are they up to something? What do we do, the usual? She opens her third eye as she takes a step back, wanting to speak to the Matoran. This time she didn't squat, knowing that it could be dangerous to do so at such a time, making both Matoran a little more intimidated by her commanding presence. _ Stay here. Akamai, help me. The two joined their elemental powers of fire and ice, creating a layer of a strange material that covered the Matoran in a dome. _ You will be safe there, pipsquecks. Both Toa Kaita looked at each other and Akamai pulled out his first pair of weapons, closing in on the piece swarm, throwing rocks at it to test it, succeeding on the second try. A torrent of pieces, accompanied by longer and more flexible, tentacle-like ones, flew towards him. He was able to dodge one by taking a step to his right, striking out with his nunchucks in retaliation. The next stream was going to his head, causing him to slide onto his knees, following the same process a few more times. One was about to take his arm, another near his head, wanting to throw him off balance. One torrent after another, Akamai was able to dodge and beat them until he could see an opportunity to get his part of the plan completed. He threw a pair of his nunchucks into the air as he stomped the next stream of pieces towards his feet, being able to unite them in the air with a blow hard enough with his staff that he held one of the pieces, a part of a Matoran's chest, in the floor. Holding the rod and the piece with his four arms, he moved awkwardly to the side, allowing Wairuga to see what the black piece was doing to try to return to the rest. Just then, another stream of pieces, much larger than the rest, went in the direction of Wairuga. Her partner, trying to help, combined his power of fire and stone to create lava and throw it at the pieces, causing them to fall to the ground, followed by absorbing the heat of the lava and keeping them in place, watching as they twisted to try to get out. But that hadn't stopped the whole blast. Wairuga unfolded her spear, placing a double-edged ax at the end. She slashed upward, letting the two blades collide with the ground to start spinning like a circular saw before hitting the blast and causing the pieces to pop off in all directions, not letting a single one touch near where the Matoran were. The pieces didn't give up, and before hitting the ground, they return to the swarm and try to attack in a different way. They come together to form a huge claw and try to crush the Toa Kaita. She wrinkled her brow, putting her hand back on the hilt of her sword, but before she could do anything, Akamai arrived and activated the Hau's powers to protect them from the blow. _ K-keep calm, Wairuga _ asked his partner as he tried to keep the force field at maximum. _ It starts to irritate me. The pieces claw, at first, was pushing with all its might to crush them, but seeing that its defenses weren't weakened, it decided to grab the force field and pull it, causing Akamai to start to lift off the ground as well. _ Is it possible to do that!? I didn't know you could do that! Wairuga put both hands together and his great ponytail began to move, transforming into a hand that grabs Akamai by the waist and pulls him. The Toa Kaita of Valor throws small stones and small embers towards the claw, causing them to get between the pieces and then causing them to grow and join the two elements, creating a crystal figure that destroys the claw from within. Seeing that opportunity, as the pieces returned to the swarm, like a moment of rest, both Toa Kaita began to speak. _ Ugh... that was scary. Have you discovered something? _ Yes. This is not an automatic defense mechanism. They must have some part of consciousness, but the Makuta is not here. _ They want to tire us out. _ Or waste our time... They had both been distracted for too long, unable to react properly due to what was happening. The pieces were forming a great sword to hit them and Akamai launched into action without thinking too much, creating his greatsword again. The collision of both, created a shower of black pieces and pieces of stone that came out from all sides. Wairuga wondered why it would do such a thing, and obliged her answer moments later. With a crash, a figure appeared between both Toa Kaita. It was large, heavy armor, nearly the same size as them with huge claws on one right arm and a firearm on the other. Unlike the other threats they had fought in that room, this one was not made entirely of black pieces. Both Toa Kaita looked at the figure with some fear. _ Akamai, stay away, it's an Exo-Toa! But he couldn't respond in time, the new enemy kicked him hard enough that he wanted to vomit after hitting the wall. Wairuga, distraught, runs over as she unfurls her spear, putting two hooks on the end that joined. Making a cut with that type of spear, she created a large bubble that she used to propel herself Akamai managed to crouch down, letting the Exo-Toa's claws slam into the wall, causing sparks to fly. He was able to get safely to the ground and kick its elbow, causing it to bend over in the opposite direction and that could no longer use that arm. Akamai received another kick that made him slide across the ground, the Exo-Toa turned and launched four rockets towards Wairuga. _ Piraka, bastard, dirty eye-hole! _ the Toa Kaita insulted it as she stopped short. Leaving the spear stuck to the ground behind her, she grabbed the hilt of her sword and made several cuts in a single blink, returning the sword to its sheath on each one until the projectiles exploded before her, raising a dense screen of smoke. Creates a strong wind that blows away the smoke, then a whip of water that wraps around the Exo-Toa's torso, freezes the whip and pulls it, kicking the Exo-Toa hard in the belly, freezing her foot against it and tearing off several pieces. Akamai was able to recover and hit his opponent's legs with his maces, causing them to break and it fell to the ground, still holding on with his available arm. Wairuga cuts back several cuts and before the Exo-Toa's torso touched the ground, Akamai reached out with his greatsword and snapped it in two. _ Are you okay, Brother? The Toa Kaita of Valor sat up, nodding as he clutched his belly with two hands, unable to hide the large bruise was forming. _ You don't have to lie to me _ replied his partner approaching. _ It's me, remember? _ I don't want you to worry about me... it distracts you. Before they could continue to worry about each other, a black cloud came out of the shattered Exo-Toa and fell on the shadow they were both casting, causing it to start to lift off the ground, being surrounded and giving it a physical form by the pieces. Akamai, frowning, begins to create pressure and heat inside his sword's sheath to make it shoot out, striking the shadow with the hilt. The shadow managed to block the attack and the sword ricocheted, spinning through the air. Akamai used the bubble his partner had created earlier to rise into the air and kick the hilt of his sword, failing again, causing the blade to dig into the ground and create a crack. With a blast coming from his arms, he moved through the air and landed on top of the sword, making the crack larger. Akamai had used her bubble to rise into the air as well, drawing her spear so she could impale the shadowy figure, wanting to pierce its entire body from an opening where the clavicle should be. Failing and ending up on the ground, she slides down, sweeping hee spear, not succeeding. Akamai returns to the charge with his staff, also not succeeding. _ Akamai, duck! Grabbing the spear by the end, Wairuga sweeps upward, attempting to cut off the shadow's head. The first misses, but the second with her ponytail had hit the mark. She had created a layer of heavy ice all over it and hit the shadow with the snapping ice shattering, giving Akamai a chance to split his staff in two and hit the shadow with the nunchucks on the side. The shadow, then, grabs his weapons and twists his arm, making him approach and turn on himself to try not to break his arm, giving the enemy the opportunity to climb on top of him, surrounding his head with its legs and starting to strangle him. The shadow spun around and knocked him to the ground, staying on top of him. Wairuga grew angry, frowning again. She grabbed the hilt of her sword once more and seemed to want to move, but nothing was seen. Three air-made clones had come out before her and struck the shadow three times, her being the fourth, destabilizing her rival. The shadow wanted to flee, retreat for a moment and be able to breathe to counterattack, but it couldn't. Before it could react, it saw two of Akamai's rings fly near its head and received a punch from both that disoriented it. Wairuga was able to get closer and kick the shadow with both legs to the chest, causing it to crash into the wall. She rose quickly and propelled her spear with her air powers, piercing the shadow and pinning it against the wall. Both Toa Kaita used their power of ice and fire to create the same substance that protected the Matoran to make the shadow stand still against the wall. _ Akamai, cover me. His partner nodded, approaching the shadow, which was trying to flee by causing its pieces to move off the seals. The Toa Kaita of Valor took it upon himself to knock them back into place while the Toa Kaita of Wisdom charged one last attack. Akamai's limbs began to burn, causing each blow he took to begin to melt each piece, causing them to glow red hot. While Wairuga, he was concentrating all his air elemental power on her attack, vibrating the blade of her sword in the sheath. Advising her partner to move away, she make a last perpendicular cut, which leaves a large mark from ceiling to floor, splitting in the shadow in two. The pieces fall to the ground and the swarm above them stops spinning. The Toa Kaita re-sheaths her sword, now using it as a staff as she felt so much energy rushing out of her body in a single blow. _ Are you okay, Sister? To which she responds by nodding her head as she places her sword sheath back on her belt. Her partner purses his lips as he approaches her, placing one pair of arms around her shoulders and the other pair around her waist. _ You don't have to lie to me. It's me, remember? _ made a pause. _ You remember me, right? She placed her hands on her Brother's cheeks and gently shook his head. _ Not a bit. Who were you? Hmm... Akromai or something? They both look at each other honeyed for a moment before turning to go back to the Matoran. They both put their hands on the dome they had created and absolved it, releasing them. _ Are you all right? _ Akamai asked, not being able to bend over too much from the blow to his belly. Both Matoran nodded their heads. The Po-Matoran approaches them with a slow, hesitant step. Playing with her fingers, she looks up at Wairuga. _ Toa? I wish I could thank you for helping me. The Toa Kaita turned to look at little Ahkmou, seeming to turn red. After looking at his partner, who formed a wide smile, Wairuga squatted down, bringing her face closer to the Po-Matoran, and she placed a pendant around her neck. Afterward, she did the same to Akamai, and they both thanked her for those gifts without questioning where she got them from. Once the pendants were delivered, the two Matoran reunited, taking time to speak instead of standing still, panicking, watching a fight they shouldn't have taken part in. _ You're here, Chronicler. Takua stared at her for a moment, doubting whether what was in front of him was a traitor or just another puppet of Makuta like the Rahi were. _ Are you okay, Ahkmou? _ Yes, now that the Toa have come to rescue me. I don't remember anything except waking up here a very short time ago. What has happened? Takua was going to retort when both Toa Kaita let out a groan. Looking towards them, the Chronicler could see that they were beginning to glow like the time they had joined. With a loud bang, they disappeared, causing the Toa to fall to the ground one after another groaning, clutching a part of their body or head as they moved across the ground, trying to escape the pain.
2020.09.07 23:54 0EventHorizon0Little Bird, Little Bird Part 1
"Well then fuck you, Robin, if you don't want to go through with the infertility treatment, then we are done." Tim's voice was at a roar, and a vein stood out on his neck. "That Doctor wanted to inject me with an experimental drug, Tim. I can't believe you would expect it of me. You knew when we started dating. We agreed-" "Things change, Robin, People change. You're broken, and I want a child, more than I want to be with you!" "But I love you!" I reached desperately for his arm, needing to touch him, calm him. He jerked away, and my nails caught. "You stupid bitch!" He screamed, gripping his arm. "I suppose I should thank you. I'm showing this to the lawyer." "I'm sorry, please, I didn't mean it!" He wrapped his arm in a paper towel, grabbed a bottle of Vodka, shoulder checked me exiting, then sprayed gravel pulling out of the driveway. The events played like a horror-film on repeat in my mind as I packed. I hadn't seen Tim for two months, and his phone went straight to voice-mail. I looked around at our once happy home and sighed. There was no reasoning with him. I left the front door ajar when I went. I moved into a ramshackle apartment across town with the little money I received from pawning my wedding band and jewelry. After the deposit and first month's rent, I was broke. "I'll find a job, mom, I'm going to be OK," I said to the phone as I dumped detergent into the community washing machine and ratcheted the finger-smudged handle to super-load. "I want to work through this on my own. I don't need anyone's help." "Your dad and I want you back here, Robin. Once you are on your feet, you can repay us if you feel obligated, but there's no need." A dark-haired woman stepped into the laundry room, hung a paper on the pitted corkboard, flashed me a smile, and then stepped out again. "No, mom, never again am I going to depend on someone else." I shifted my weight as the washing machine began to thump into my hip. "But you have no job, honey, what are you going to do for bills and expenses?" I crossed the room and tore a phone number from the paper, "Don't worry, mom, I'll be fine." I clicked the end call button and gazed at the scrap in my hand. Come clean for us, 13 an hour, no experience needed. I called the number that night, and to my surprise, the man at the other end of the line was willing to give me a shot the following day. I went to bed exhilarated. I'll be fine on my own; I reassured myself listening to passing traffic. I closed my eyes, I'll be better than fine, I'll be great! I stared in awe at the mansion towering above countless acres of walnut trees as I pulled up the next morning. Cleaning equipment was set out on a brown tarp near a white van with a logo reading Infinity Cleaning Services. Fresh cut grass and damp soil filled the dewy morning air, and I closed my eyes, taking in the sweet earthy blend. "OK new girl, I'm Big, Teddy." Startled, I turned to see a short man clamber out of the van. I tried not to gawk at the round Oompa Loompa with a stiletto knife tattoo on his forearm. He stared me up and down, and my skin began to crawl. "Nice to meet you, Big Teddy." I held out my hand, and he stared at it indignantly. "Uh-huh. Get your equipment. Let's see what you've got. If you can keep up with Selma," he nodded at the girl I had seen in the laundry room the previous evening, "Maybe I'll give you the supervisor position and let you deal with this shit while I sit on the beach and drink Mai Tai's." I followed him into the house, hefting various cleaning supplies. "Start here." he motioned to a bathroom the size of my apartment. "Holy yogurt," I said, dropping the gear. "The owner likes to leave shit on the seat." He sauntered into the other room, a pillow of neck skin bulging and quivering with each step. "Oh, and new girl, I expect to be able to eat my lunch off the shitter when you finish." I breathed a sigh of relief as he walked out, then inspected the rubber gloves. They were leaky yellow things and smelled like old feet rotting in a gutter. I dropped them and wrinkled my nose and peered out of the bathroom. Selma was scrubbing tile in the kitchen with her rag and bare hands. She isn't wearing gloves, how bad could it be? I pulled my sleeves up and poured cleaner in a bucket. The smell of ammonia assaulted my nose, and foam rolled over the surface. "Rich assholes just leave more crap behind," I chuckled to myself, inspecting the scuzzy toilet. I dipped a brush into the bucket and noticed the cleaner bubbling slightly. I took a deep breath and went to work, trying to ignore the itch. By the time lunch rolled around, my hands throbbed and looked like a leper's. I needed the job, though, so I washed up and went to my car for lunch. I was unfolding the paper wrapping on my sandwich when Selma sat next to me. "Tsk," she grabbed my fingers. "That will burn tomorrow. You have to build up resistance," she held up her calloused hands. "But for now, maybe wear gloves." "They stink like shit, and have holes." I grimaced, remembering the foul odor. "I'd rather just build the resistance." "Why are you working here? You don't look like you need to clean toilets. A pretty girl like you can just, you know." She batted her eyelashes dramatically and then held her hand out as if to admire an imaginary ring. "My bills are too much since my husband- ex-husband left. I need the money for rent and food." She bit her lip. "Ahh, I see. Listen, girl, it's his loss," she held out some lotion. "What's that? "This is my secret weapon. It makes the chemicals mmm, not so bad." She squirted a drop onto my palm. I rubbed it in, and numbing relief instantly washed over my skin. "It's better!" I held my hands up. "Hey, new girl, you left shit on the toilet. You want me to eat shit, is that what you are saying on your first day?" Big Teddy placed his hands on his hips. I rolled my eyes at Selma, who bit into her banana nervously. "Sorry, Teddy! I'll get it as soon as I finish my sandwich." "Big, Teddy... and in that case, you can eat your lunch on the road, leave, go, bye-bye." "No!" I shrilled. "No. I'll do it now." "Good, hurry. I want to get paid for this job." Selma smiled at me and patted my shoulder sympathetically. "It gets better..." She paused, expectantly. "Oh, It's Robin." I face-palmed my forehead feeling quite dumb. "Robin, like the bird, I'm Selma. It gets better, Robin." She smiled again. "Who gets shit on the underside of a toilet?" Selma shrugged and giggled. "Good luck!" She waved bye with her banana peel. That night my hands wore red splotches and burned like the time I'd scalded them making tea. I finally got to alcohol-induced sleep. The next morning I woke to my alarm, which had been belting beeps for half an hour. "Shit!" I scrambled into my shoes and then grabbed my keys and left. I arrived at the new worksite 15 minutes late. When I entered the house, Selma was waiting. "Tsk, you're lucky Teddy is picking up a check across town. "Sorry, it was my hands. I couldn't sleep." "New house, new product," she tilted the bucket showing a purple powder that smelled faintly of lavender. "Not as harsh today," she whispered, "won't' need those gloves, plus." She squeezed a little lotion onto my hands. "That will take care of the burn." My hands tingled then went numb in all the right places. "I'm going to need some of that lotion for later." "Don't worry. You'll have no trouble sleeping tonight, I promise!" I trundled the cleaning supplies up to the second story master bath. Selma stuck her head in the door 15 minutes later. "Hey, just checking on you." she paddled a little beat on the wall. I looked up, clearing the strands of hair from my face by blowing raspberries. "Wear a cap; it takes care of the hair. You try that new cleaner yet?" "I'll do that thanks, and not yet, just about to." "OK, might want to hurry it up, Teddy will be back soon." "Yeah, I'll hurry." She checked her watch, shoved a hand in her pocket, and went back downstairs. I dipped my rag in the purple suds and wrung it out on the marble countertop then buffed circles. That's when things went wrong. The antique vanity corbels began wobbling, expanding, and contracting rapidly. I gripped the marble to steady myself, but my stomach did a cartwheel, and hot saliva flooded my mouth. I knelt over the toilet and puked. With each retch, my world toppled a little more out of focus. I remember the cold tile floor coming up to meet me. Garbled angry voices began arguing, followed by a thunderous crack. Then Selma knelt by me, her dry strong fingers tilting my head. "It will be OK Robin, I promise, I'm getting you help." Then unconsciousness. •• Clunk. I jolted awake, bouncing uncomfortably on a gurney. "Fucking potholes!" A man in a face mask and a white long-sleeved shirt leaned above me. "H-help." My voice was peculiar, that of a small child's. "Help, yeah, we are helping, we help lots of people." The window behind him flashed green as a tree passed by in the frame. "Here you go, just what you need." He plunged a syringe into my IV, and my eyelids fluttered. I relaxed my eyes, focusing on a brown tarp on the floorboard. The ambulance bounced again. "What the shit, man? Are you trying to hit them?" He hammered his fist into the cab barrier kicking the brown tarp inadvertently. A tubby arm with a stiletto knife tattoo flopped out from underneath covered in dried blood. Terror rippled in a torrent up my spine, I whimpered, and then the warm pulsations of a drug cocktail overtook me, and my eyes shut again. •• I shivered awake, gasping. My head pounded in time with my heartbeat. I traced my fingertips over uneven stones serving as my bed. I tried to move, but my bruised naked body felt sluggish and unresponsive, perhaps from the chill. I listened to a sound cutting through my mind's fog, click, click. Tim liked that sound, high heels, click, click, click. "She's waking," said a man in a tinny mechanical voice. "Good, I want to speak with her before I leave." said a woman. The clicks approached, stopping a few feet from me. "Robin, Robin, sweetie I… I need you awake for this." "This?" I repeated, my mouth was cottony. "So many fertility treatments. It must be hard knowing your eggs are all spoiled at least for traditional purposes." I remained quiet, save my teeth, which chattered incessantly. "Really," She continued. "I was so pleased when the Doctor told me I would be the one to procure you." I opened my throbbing eyes, blinking through the pain." Selma?" "Yes," her once thick accent had vanished, "it's me." "What happened? Where the hell am I?" "You are in a place that no one will ever find you." She tittered. "Why, what do you want from me?" My eyes beheld her as a fragmented shadow through bars. "First, because you are perfect. You're hopeless and alone. No one will miss you. Second, just like the Doctor said, you have something to offer the world but are too selfish. Congratulations, by the way. Your ex would have been so happy with this success. It was his drive for a fertility treatment that put us onto your scent in the first place." I furrowed my brow as I struggled into a seated position. Something was wrong. My hands moved almost of their own volition over my chest and rested on my stomach. "Oh, God." My words were breath. "God has nothing to do with it." She crouched behind me and stroked my grimy locks through the bars. "So pretty, so gullible, it was easy." She twined her fingers in my hair and yanked. "Ahh-" my neck popped as I was wrenched sidelong. "You are no longer a wasted womb, you have a purpose now," she hissed. She released me and dusted her hands together, ridding herself of the clump of hair she'd torn out. "Things are about to get worse for you, Robin, like the bird." My mouth gapped, as a spasm strangled my words. "I want her awake when it happens. In fact, I want her awake until she has the baby, and feed her the baby needs it." "Yes, Selma." The mechanical voice echoed. The smart clicking of her heels on stone faded, and a door opened then shut at the far end of the room. "Let's get rid of that stench." His voice, which I realized was over a speaker, seethed. There was a hiss, air in a waterline as it turned out, and then frigid water showered me. I curled up on the floor as feces, mine, I assume, washed toward a drain centered in the cage. My pale skin stippled in goose flesh, and an involuntary groan escaped my throat. The water decreased to a drip. "All clean," said the speaker. My lips trembling, my eyes finally began to clear and take in my prison. The 10x10 cage was empty; no toilet, just a drain, no cot, just a cold floor, and one door locked tight. I was the only prisoner, and my cell was set off-center in a dimly lit dome that reminded me of a dank gymnasium dipped in sewage and left to fester in an icebox. A guard building was my miserable sentry, standing a few yards away. Pipes were strung haphazardly across the ceiling, releasing pressure from time to time with a steam jet. The guard building door opened, and the white-clad man walked to the cell carrying a tray. I crawled toward him in desperation. "No!" He tapped a pistol strapped to his hip. "Stick your arms through the bars." Too hungry and weak to argue, I complied. He snapped handcuffs on and slid the food with his foot through the cell door, spilling most of it onto the ground. Then he strutted back to me and pulled my arms until my face pressed against the bars. "Don't try anything, or I'll kill you, and the doc will just get another junkie whore for his project." As he released the cuffs, he spat onto the food tray. I crawled to the food and shoveled a handful into my mouth. My taste buds rejoiced, and for the first time, I felt my baby move. Hopelessness draped over me like a cloak, more and more as the days passed. I had no idea what these people if you could call them that, wanted. I wasn't sure if I'd been raped, or even if I was still alive at the low points. Sanity is a fragile thing. They fed me twice per day when the guard's shifts changed. The first guard, the spitter, was an evil prick. He blasted me with icy water every time he came in, and again before he left. The next guard never spoke, just fed and observed me. The third was an old bent woman who I called the witch. She used poles to shuffleboard food through the door, and if I didn't move fast enough for her, she'd gouge me with the rods and cackle. The cycle continued day and night for nearly two weeks, and in that time, my stomach grew substantially. The babe would kick in sporadic sessions brought on by food. His, I assumed he was a boy, little 15 minute workouts. It was beautiful, and the only moments I felt happiness. Soon though, I dreaded the bursts of movement. His feet and arms became goads, prodding my insides like cattle. Dark bruises formed on my stomach, and the skin swelled with fluid until ultimately, he grew too strong and pushed too hard. "Ahhhh!" I screamed, dropping the tray. He moved again, and my rib crunched like broken glass underfoot. "Ahhh fuck!" The dick was on duty, and he came out of his guard-shed with evil red eyes. "Shut up, you bitch, or I'll leave the water on," he snarled. "Somethings wrong, Gahhh!" I clutched my side as a lump arced from my ribs to my belly button. "No… it shouldn't be that strong yet, it's too soon!" He bit his fingernail, then hurried back to the shack where a faint discussion ensued. "It's moving, broke the prisoner's ribs. I told you we should have her sedated." A pause as he listened. "I'll be damned if I'm the one held responsible for something you are forcing- He stopped. "No, there is no need for that, Selma, I'll handle it." There was another pause. Then his tone morphed from ferocious to timid. "Yes sir, right away sir, sorry sir." He stepped out of the shack and swiftly walked toward me. Another movement started, and my stomach contorted, "Ahhh, oh Jesus, it hurts." Low in my spine, needles prickled then drifted down my legs. "The Doctor just ripped my ass, because of you." I looked up, holding my crushed ribs. He drew the pistol out and pointed it at my chest. "Noo! Please, I'll be quiet, I promise, I- Gahhh!" "Night night," the man smiled wickedly. A white flash belched from the barrel. "Hugh!" Air vented from my body in a torrent as the bullet impacted. I toppled back, my lungs useless. Will I sleep now, is this it? Please, God, the baby. My eyes closed, my fingers seeking the wound, but there was no bullet hole, only a hot metal cylinder hanging from skin. A dart? I thought. Then I slept. •• Please understand this is very painful for me, and a man sitting across the coffee shop, well, he's watching me. I need to go so I can finish this before they find me. I'll post again soon. -Robin Part 2
2020.09.03 18:00 SaintRidleyWrestling Observer Rewind ★ Mar. 28, 1988
Going through old issues of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter and posting highlights in my own words, continuing in the footsteps of daprice82. For anyone interested, I highly recommend signing up for the actual site at f4wonline and checking out the full archives. • PREVIOUS • 1987 FUTURE YEARS ARCHIVE: The Complete Observer Rewind Archive by daprice82
Lots of news… next week. There’s some negotiations happening that could make the basis of the biggest story of the year, but nothing’s concrete yet so… Yeah. Turns out to be a bit smaller at this stage than Dave's been led to believe right now.
Interest in Wrestlemania this year looks way down compared to last year. And it’s nothing to do with the Clash. The first Wrestlemania had media all over it, from newspapers to big magazines. The second got a lot of press as well, a lot driven by its major celebrity involvement. Wrestlemania 3 didn’t get a lot of national press, but it was the most successful financially and a lot of Michigan/Ontario papers spent a lot of time on it. This year? Practically nothing. No news coverage, no broad interest by the general public, nobody on the bus talking about the show. PPV means Wrestlemania won’t be a bomb, but it’s not going to be the giant blockbuster Dave anticipated at hitting over $25 million. He still thinks worst case scenario they gross $19 million, but the lack of buzz is going to affect WWF going into the summer.
Billy Jack Haynes and Don Owen’s war for Oregon is the biggest story this week, as two of Owen’s biggest stars just quit on him. Rip Oliver and Mike Miller are presumably jumping over to start with Haynes when he gets going, along with rumors of Kevin Kelly, Chavo Guerrero, Big Bubba, and J.T. Southern. Tom Zenk and Curt Hennig got offers as well, with the latter being billed as appearing for Owens already.
Over on Pro Wrestling this Week, their angle is that Paul E. Dangerously purchased controlling interest in the show and is doing a hostile takeover. Guess the ECW Invasion on Raw wasn’t Paul’s first invasion angle. The show for Wrestlemania weekend will see Paul fire Gordon Solie, Joe Pedicino, and Bonnie Blackstone, and Solie getting fired on air could make the show a collector’s item (well, I can’t find it online so it might actually be). Watch this Danger Zone, because Paul gives a really good early career promo here.
Dump Matsumoto’s final televised match, which aired March 6 in Japan, did a monster 13.2 rating. No doubt that sticks around as the second highest rated wrestling show of the year barring something absolutely amazing and unforeseen happening. Extra impressive, the show aired on a Sunday afternoon out of prime time. The main event saw Dump and Yukari Omori, also retiring, go against the Crush Gals to a no contest where all of them bled buckets. Chigusa Nagayo then grabbed the house mic and requested an impromptu exhibition teaming with Dump, one of her biggest rivals in her career. To Dave’s knowledge they have never teamed together. They went against Lioness Asuka and Omori for five minutes until tv time ran out, with a double pin happening at the bell where both Crush Gals were pinned by Omori and Dump. It’s pretty much tradition in joshi retirement shows that the retiree gets to be put over one last time by their friends and rivals.
This week’s syndicated ratings report (for the week ending February 21) have WWF in 6th place and Crockett in 8th. WWF is at a 9.9 in 245 markets while Crocket’s got a 7.9 in 177 markets, both dropping over a point since the previous week’s report. GLOW has joined in with POWW, AWA, and Pro Wrestling this Week’s syndicated package, so that should probably go back up to the top 15 going forward. A note in Sports, Inc. magazine about WWF ad rates means WWF should be grossing between $15.6 and $18 million this year in pure advertising revenue. Crockett stands to gross around $10 million.
Dave’s hoping to be able to get preliminary ratings info for the recent Saturday Night’s Main Event this issue. It should give a sense on how the general public reacted to The Main Event. If ratings are down a lot, it means that the general public probably got turned off by the whole business with the belt sale and referee twin magic. Ratings for the syndicated shows the week after the Main Event were very good because everyone wanted to know what happened, but the week after that saw a 1.2 drop. So we’ll see if this is a trend.
Syndicators have already ordered 52 episodes of Learning the Ropes, the tv show Crockett’s going to be involved with. It starts in September and a lot of the Crockett main event guys are going to be involved playing themselves. Don’t worry - it’s only going to get the one season, so just 26 episodes exist.
So last week Dave reported about Andre choking Duggan and Duggan bleeding from the mouth, and it really shows the difference between NWA and WWF. Andre accidentally hit Duggan’s lip, which led to Duggan’s tooth cutting his lip and he bled a lot. There was talk of Vince ordering a re-shoot because of how much blood. In the NWA, if there were a similar happening, they’d be ecstatic about all the blood and certainly wouldn’t consider a reshoot. No word on if they will reshoot, but we should know by next week.
[WWF] The Killer Bees have been asked to turn heel. They did an angle during the lumberjack match in Philadelphia on March 12 where they attacked Hogan during his match with DiBiase. Of course, Hogan beat all three up.
Demolition have been doing jobs everywhere, which Dave thinks is a good hint that they win the titles at Wrestlemania. WWF’s booking policy on tag teams has always been to have the future champions job relentlessly until they win, and this looks like more of the same.
[Oregon] Curt Hennig was supposed to wrestle here on March 5, but his back and neck prevented him from working. The AWA Title was held up here pending a Hennig vs. Grappler match, but with Hennig out they subbed in the Assassin as his representative. Assassin beat Grappler, so Hennig is now the “new” AWA World Champion in Portland. Yeah, this is astonishingly dumb.
[Memphis] About the only stuff going on right now of any interest is about the Gilberts. Dave watched the past couple weeks and credits Eddie and Missy Hyatt for breathing some life into the promotion, but there’s nothing on the undercard to really support it. Eddie threw fire on March 19, burning Randy Hales after he expressed frustration with the Gilberts trying to take over. Eddie came out for a match and lost via countout because he was arguing with Hales.
The closest to anyone or anything of consequence happening in Central States was the Midnight Rockers were announced to replace the Rock & Roll Express for their March 17 show. They no-showed.
[WCCW] The March 20 Star Wars show only drew 2,500 fans and started 15 minute late. It then ended at 11 pm (4:45 total length) because they spent so much time delaying between matches. The Simpsons now have both sets of tag titles, Hayes beat Parsons by DQ, Chris Adams beat Terry Taylor by countout when Taylor walked out after getting beaten absolutely bloody, and Kerry retained the world title against Terry Gordy when the referee, despite a ref bump, said he did in fact see Gordy throw Kerry over the top rope. They must make their refs out of tougher stuff in Texas. The Thunderdome cage match in the main event was absolutely bloody, but Dave’s coverage does not make clear who won.
WCCW showed the concert attack on the syndicated show and it came off great. One snag: while the wrestlers brawled, the band just kept playing like nothing had happened. The story so far, at least what they’re pushing, is that Buddy Roberts got drunk and ruined the concert and Hayes won’t speak with him because of it. Meanwhile, Terry Gordy, who came back on March 20, claims to have heard two conflicting stories about Buddy’s drinking. So that’s a fun angle.
Not much going on in New Japan, but they’re pushing a tag team of pirates. One of the pirates is Bob Orton, playing Billy the Pirate. Billy wrestled Inoki on the live Nagasaki tv show on March 4 which drew a 10.5 rating, the company’s highest since December.
Lots of results from All Japan, not a lot of news except for building a big Budokan Hall show for March 27. Tenryu and Hansen will have a rematch for the PWF Title while Brody challenges Jumbo Tsuruta for the International Title. Also appearing during that time period will be Big Bubba Rogers for a four-week tour before he starts with WWF, Tom Magee, and Jimmy Snuka.
Here’s the real scoop with All Japan - rumor has it that somewhere down the road, possibly as early as the summer, they plan to unify the singles titles. That will probably be Tsuruta vs. Tenryu, based off current titleholders. The countdown to the Triple Crown Title begins.
All Japan did a worked shoot take on the Choshu-Maeda shoot on March 5. It was designed to fool smart fans into thinking there’s potential for real violence in Hansen vs. Tenryu on March 9. Tenryu and Hara did a double enziguiri to Hansen, then Tenryu sold his ankle like he kicked too hard while Hansen collapsed, “knocked out.” He sold it super well while Terry Gordy got involved to throw them out so it wouldn’t be obvious why they weren’t trying to get the pin. About 45 seconds later, Hansen groggily finds his feet and goes absolutely nuts, diving through the ropes onto Tenryu and starts beating him with everything he can find and the match goes to a double countout. After everyone else is taken to the back following the brawl in the stands, Hansen roughs up an official and grabs the mic and says “Nobody potatoes me!” which even had Dave fooled for a bit. Tried to find video on youtube, no luck, but this sounds amazing.
TV tapings for the dates after Wrestlemania have been taped, so here be spoilers. Ted DiBiase wrestled both tapings without the belt, so he didn’t win. Savage wasn’t on either taping, and about every other wrestler in the tournament except Hogan (gone for the summer) and Bam Bam (who blew out his knee and may not make Wrestlemania) showed up as a non-champion, so that clinches it for Savage. Also AP Wire picked up the bit from WWF Magazine about WWF Champion Randy Savage. So the two biggest events of the year, WWF has had the news media give away the results. The line in the magazine wasn’t a WWF plant, but a genuine error that made it to print. Beefer also appeared without the belt and Honkeytonk with, while Jimmy Hart had his hair covered, so there’s that result. And Strike Force appeared with the titles, so Dave concedes that he was only 1 for 3 in predicting the big title matches. Not so fast, Dave - you'll get up to 2/3 when the show happens.
[WWF] They’re trying to reboot Ted DiBiase a bit. Heenan’s going to continue being Andre’s manager and they’re going to focus on portraying DiBiase as a good wrestler, not just a chickenshit who pays off the referee to win. They realized fans weren’t taking Ted seriously as a top tier wrestler, which really hurt his drawing power, which should have been much more given the level of push, gimmick, and ability he has.
Also coming up after Wrestlemania will be a feud between Rick Rude and Jake Roberts. Rude’s gimmick is going to be kissing a planted woman in the audience each night, and on a tv show he’ll kiss Jake’s wife, which will set up the feud. Dave finds it amusing how in the old days they did everything they could to portray the wrestlers as single out of fear of losing women as fans and groupies.
Several closed-circuit sites for Wrestlemania are being closed due to poor advance sales. WWF is now going on record that closed-circuit is the past and ppv is the future. Dave’s talked to people all over the country this week and it seems people just aren’t into the tournament concept. Maybe this is where Vince’s reputation for hating tournaments stems from?
[AWA] Pat Tanaka and Paul Diamond won the AWA tag titles from the Midnight Rockers at the Vegas tapings on March 19. Adrian Adonis no-showed the taping, along with more than a half dozen others, including a new manager they were bringing in from Florida called Diamond Dallas Page. Well, that's sure a way to make your rewind debut with a bang.
[AWA] Stan Kowalski won’t be in to manage, apparently, but to do “Big K’s Corner.” Should be as entertaining as Paul E.'s Danger Zone is, just like Baron Von Raschke is as entertaining as Takada.
[AWA] Verne even had a GLOW tag match featuring Queen Kong, Hot Rod Andi, Malibu Doll, and another Dave didn’t catch the name of. Correction from last week: Kong didn’t wrestle as Mount Fuji in GLOW, but as Mathilda the Hun. Anyway, Dave quips that yes, this is indeed wrestling for serious fans, no gimmicks like the NWA and WWF. There was another women’s match between Debbie Combs and Olympia which was awful, since Olympia still doesn’t know what she’s doing. It was originally supposed to be Madusa vs. Olympia for the title, and then changed to a number one contender’s match, but that seems to have been tossed out since Madusa was in Debbie’s corner with her arm in a sling to cover for the real reason she was out: cosmetic surgery the results of which are fairly obvious.
AWA’s world title build up to the March 19 Hennig vs. Wahoo McDaniel match sure was a rollercoaster. Zenk was supposed to have a non-title match at the February taping and a title match at this one, but he quit the day before the taping. Two weeks of promos hyping the match up after the non-title match that never happened, including hyping up how good Zenk looked at the shows he didn’t appear on. Then the commentators talk about how Wahoo now has the title match, because “as everyone saw, Hennig injured Zenk” and have since claimed it was a broken arm or leg. Not even World Class has gone so far as to claim that everybody saw something that never actually happened.
Remember two weeks ago when Stampede had its best match ever? They did it again on March 12 but even better. Owen and Bruce teamed with Benoit, Pillman, and Jason the Terrible against Steve DiSalvo, Makhan Singh, Jerry Morrow, Great Gama, and Johnny Smith in an elimination cage match. Supposedly this was a five star classic to be sure. Another match in Edmonton that never made tv and thus is impossible to find.
More on Paul E. taking over Pro Wrestling this Week. They’re going to announce this week that he takes full control on June 1.
The New York Times ran an article on Thunderbolt Patterson and his new career as a blue collar labor organizer in Atlanta.
Saturday Night’s Main Event drew a 10 rating and 30 share. It’s a good rating, but definitely lower than previous ones and shows that The Main Event didn’t really add to their viewing audience. In the Bay area specifically, the show only managed a 5.5 rating, while in Dallas it was a 4.
There’s talk of Jerry Jarrett working with Mike Graham to open a Florida promotion and they’ve already talked about getting Gordon Solie to do tv. Jerry does not appear to open a Florida promotion until 2002, when he opens up TNA.
Bruno Sammartino did a candid interview about WWF on a Pittsburgh radio show. Dave’s hoping someone who taped it can send him the tape so he can hear it.
Ted DiBiase is now using the cobra clutch as his finisher.
Billy Jack Haynes’ new promotion has a name: The OWWF. That’s the Oregon-Washington Wrestling Federation, and they’ll also be running a wrestling school starting April 4, with Brad Rheingans and Haynes as coaches.
Blackjack Mulligan won a legal case where he was sued for punching a business partner during an argument in 1986. His defense was that it was self-defense, and the jury believed him. Mulligan’s lawyer was so good he even got the accuser to say he felt sorry for Mulligan. As part of the proceedings, evidence turned up that recent bad business deals and a heart attack have pretty much kept Mulligan out of wrestling and even put him in such bad straits that he may lose his house.
Two readers write in suggesting Dave start a letter-writing campaign so fans can put pressure on cable companies to show the wrestling they want to see, like New Japan or All Japan Women, and ditch wrestling they don’t want (like Financial News Network running NWF). Dave says rather than tell people what to write and organizing it the way these two are suggesting, he’ll start getting network addresses and publish those so fans can voice their genuine opinions if they choose to. Dave thinks writing to FNN, ESPN, or Tempo and requesting a specific show or thanking them for running a show they do run could have some influence if readers do this in numbers. As for The Nashville Network, which does sports all day Sunday and was brought up as an option by one letter, the owner doesn’t want any wrestling on his station. You’re gonna have to wait for ECW to hit TNN in 1999, fellas.
We’re a week out from Clash and the NWA has only announced four of the matches for the show.
Dave saw the NWA’s March 16 show in San Francisco, which drew surprisingly well at 4,500 fans who were very enthusiastic for the show. Nothing spectacular here, even the FlaiSting match only gets 2.5 stars. The night before they were in Reno for their first show out there and drew so poorly that you can probably expect them not to come back.
The new TBS Sunday show for NWA has the wrestlers excited because they get a nice bonus for appearing. The main event participants split a $7,500 bonus, which is huge if you’ve got a singles main event, and the semi-main splits $2,500. The show will be called NWA Main Event, and will have a three match format with interviews and become the new C show of Crockett’s syndicated package. The bonuses should especially keep the heels happy despite being asked to do jobs on tv, at least in theory. Dave predicts a lot of good matches and mostly disqualification finishes.
NWA is planning a July ppv Great American Bash with Flair vs. Luger, but that’s in the 60-day window before WWF’s August show. Ted Turner’s supposed to clear athe ppv market up for them, so we’ll see how that goes and we can probably expect a free WWF countershow on USA at that time.
[NWA] The Fantastics had a match against the Midnight Express that went 37 minutes and took up basically the entire episode of NWA Pro from this week. It looked like a heated match from what Dave saw on TBS, and he puts over how hard the Fantastics are working to get over. Dave would rather watch guys like the Fantastics who may not quite be the best but bust their asses to give you action than more talented guys won ego trips who don’t give you anything. The Fantastics vs. Midnights might just be the best series of matches going on in North America right now.
Watch: NWA Pro March 26, 1988 NEXT WEEK:Wrestlemania and Clash of the Champions, Crockett in negotiations with Ken Mantell of World Class, Magnum T.A. gets physical on tv again, and more
2020.08.27 08:45 Amanda2020-jumiThe utility model relates to the technical field of workpiece chamfering
The utility model relates to the technical field of workpiece chamfering, more specifically to a chamfering machine for chamfering die steel. Background technology: die steel is used to manufacture cold stamping die, hot forging die and die casting die. Mold is the main processing tool for manufacturing parts in machinery manufacturing, radio instrument, motor, electrical appliances and other industrial departments. The quality of die directly affects the quality of pressure processing technology, product precision, output and production cost. Besides reasonable structural design and machining accuracy, the quality and service life of die are mainly affected by die material and heat treatment. Mold steel in the processing before the general need for grinding, polishing and chamfering and other processing, so also will use grinder, chamfering machine and other equipment. The existing chamfering machine, as shown in Fig. 1, generally includes a frame 1, which is equipped with a worktable for placing die steel, a grinding wheel for chamfering the die steel, a motor 3 for driving the grinding wheel 4 to rotate, and a moving rodless air cylinder 5 for driving the grinding wheel 4 to approach the die steel. The motor is installed on the sliding block of the movable rodless cylinder 5, and a baffle plate 6 is installed on the frame 1, There is a gap between the lower end of the baffle plate 6 and the worktable, and the grinding wheel 4 is located in the gap. When working, first place the die steel on the worktable 2, and make the die steel press against the side wall of the baffle plate 6, then start the motor 3 to make the motor 3 drive the grinding wheel 4 to rotate, and then make the moving rodless cylinder 5 drive the motor 3 to move towards the die steel direction, so as to make the grinding wheel 4Chamfer the die steel. However, when the chamfering machine needs to adjust the processing size of the die steel, it generally needs to change the processing size of the die steel by disassembling and adjusting the motor and baffle plate. The operation process is very inconvenient, affecting the processing efficiency, so there is still room for improvement. Technical realization elements: the purpose of the utility model is to provide a chamfering machine for die steel chamfering, which has the advantages of convenient adjustment of the installation angle of the motor, application of different processing sizes and improvement of processing efficiency. In order to achieve the above purpose, the utility model provides the following technical solutions: a chamfering machine for die steel chamfering, including a rack, a worktable for placing die steel, a grinding wheel for chamfering die steel, a motor for driving the grinding wheel to rotate, and a moving rodless cylinder for driving the grinding wheel to approach the die steel It is arranged on the sliding block of the moving rodless cylinder, the frame is provided with a baffle plate, the lower end of the baffle plate is provided with a gap between the working table, the grinding wheel is located in the gap, the frame is provided with a rotary cylinder to drive the motor to rotate, the rotary table axis of the rotary cylinder is perpendicular to the output shaft of the motor, and the frame is provided with a driving rotary cylinder The sliding block on the moving rodless cylinder is provided with a horizontal rodless cylinder which drives the vertical rodless cylinder to move horizontally. The moving direction of the sliding block of the horizontal rodless cylinder is perpendicular to the axis of the rotary table of the rotary cylinder. By adopting the above technical scheme, when the mould needs to be changedWhen machining the steel dimension, first start the vertical rodless cylinder to drive the rotary cylinder to move downward, and then start the horizontal rodless cylinder to drive the vertical rodless cylinder away from the worktable, and then start the rotary cylinder to drive the motor to rotate, so as to change the grinding wheel processing angle; then, by controlling the vertical rodless cylinder, horizontal rodless cylinder and moving rodless cylinder, the sand can be moved When the wheel contacts with the die steel, the chamfering of the die steel can be realized. To sum up, compared with the way of changing the machining size of die steel by disassembling and adjusting the motor and baffle plate, the installation angle of the motor is changed by controlling the horizontal rodless cylinder, vertical rodless cylinder and rotary cylinder, which is easy to operate and can be applied to different processing sizes and improve the processing efficiency. Furthermore, the frame is provided with a moving frame for installing the baffle plate and a transverse cylinder for driving the moving frame to move along the moving direction of the sliding block of the horizontal rod less cylinder, and the moving frame is provided with a longitudinal cylinder for driving the baffle plate to move up and down. By adopting the above technical scheme, in the process of changing the installation angle of the motor, the transverse cylinder can be started first to drive the mobile frame to adjust in the horizontal direction, and then the longitudinal cylinder can be started to drive the baffle plate to adjust in the vertical direction on the mobile frame, so as to change the installation position of the baffle plate and avoid the baffle affecting the adjustment of the motor. Furthermore, the moving frame is in the shape of a fan, the baffle plate is located in the opening of the mobile frame, the guide rails are arranged on both sides of the opening of the mobile frame, and the two sides of the baffle plate slide in the guide rail. By adopting the above technical methodsWhen the baffle moves under the action of the longitudinal cylinder, the moving track of the baffle plate can be limited through the guide rail, so that the movement of the baffle plate is more stable. Furthermore, the two sides of the baffle sliding in the guide rail are provided with rollers against the inner wall of the guide rail. By adopting the above technical scheme, the roller setting can effectively reduce the friction between the baffle and the guide rail, and reduce unnecessary mechanical loss. Furthermore, the upper and lower ends of the baffle plate are provided with brush blocks which are adhered to the inner wall of the guide rail. By adopting the above technical scheme, the brush block can clean the debris attached to the guide rail during the baffle moving process, so as to avoid the debris affecting the baffle plate movement. Furthermore, the outer side of the brush block is provided with a wiping layer which is made of superfine fiber material. By adopting the above technical scheme, the superfine fiber material has the characteristics of high water absorption, strong decontamination and easy cleaning. Therefore, the wiping layer made of superfine fiber can effectively remove the impurities in the guide rail. Furthermore, the side of the baffle plate facing the worktable is provided with a protective pad. By using the above technical scheme, the setting of the protective pad can effectively reduce the impact of the die steel on the baffle plate during positioning, which can protect the die steel and avoid damage to the baffle plate. Furthermore, the rotary cylinder is provided with a scale plate, and the scale of the scale plate is arranged along the rotation direction of the motor. By using the above technical scheme, after adjusting the motor angle, the motor rotation angle can be judged by observing the relationship between the motor and the scale plateError, so as to facilitate personnel to adjust the equipment. Compared with the prior art, the utility model has the following beneficial effects: (1) compared with the way of changing the processing size of die steel by disassembling and adjusting the motor and baffle plate, the installation angle of the motor is changed by controlling the horizontal rod less cylinder, the vertical rod less cylinder and the rotating cylinder, which is convenient to operate, can be applied to different processing sizes and improve the processing efficiency; < B r> (2) the installation position of baffle plate can be changed by setting horizontal cylinder and longitudinal cylinder, which can avoid baffle affecting motor adjustment; (3) by setting brush block, the brush block can clean the debris attached to the guide rail during the baffle moving, so as to avoid the influence of debris on the baffle plate movement. Fig. 1 shows the overall structure of the existing chamfering machine; Fig. 2 is the overall structure diagram of the present embodiment; Fig. 3 is the enlarged schematic diagram of Fig. 2 A; Fig. 4 is the local sectional schematic diagram along the A-A line in Fig. 2; Fig. 5 is the local sectional schematic diagram along the B-B line in Fig. 2. Reference marks: 1. Frame; 2. Worktable; 3. Motor; 4. Grinding wheel; 5. Moving rod less cylinder; 6. Baffle plate; 7. Rotary cylinder; 8. Vertical rod less cylinder; 9. Horizontal rod less cylinder; 10. Scale plate; 11. Moving frame; 12. Transverse cylinder; 13. Longitudinal cylinder; 14. Guide rail; 15. Roller; 16. Brush block; 17. Wiping layer; 18. Protective pad. The specific implementation mode the utility model is described in detail in combination with the attached drawings and the embodiment. A kind of die steel chamferingThe chamfering machine, as shown in Fig. 2, comprises a frame 1. The upper surface of the frame 1 is provided with a worktable for placing die steel, a grinding wheel for chamfering the die steel, a motor 3 for driving the grinding wheel 4 to rotate, and a moving rodless cylinder 5 for driving the grinding wheel 4 to approach the die steel. The motor 3 is installed on the sliding block of the moving rodless cylinder 5, and the baffle plate 6 is installed on the frame 1 On the position of the same upper surface of the frame 1 and the worktable 2, there is a gap between the lower end of the baffle plate 6 and the worktable 2, and the grinding wheel 4 is located in the gap. As shown in Fig. 2 and 3, the frame 1 is equipped with a rotating cylinder 7 driving the motor 3 to rotate. The axis of the rotary table of the rotating cylinder 7 is perpendicular to the output shaft of the motor 3. The frame 1 is located on the side with the baffle plate 6, and some vertical rodless cylinders 8 are installed, and the rotary cylinder 7 is installed on the slide block of the vertical rodless air cylinder 8, and the sliding block of the moving rodless cylinder 5 is provided with a horizontal rodless cylinder 9 and a vertical rod less cylinder The straight rodless cylinder 8 is installed on the slider of the horizontal rodless cylinder 9, and the moving direction of the slider of the horizontal rodless cylinder 9on your order is perpendicular to the axis of the rotary table of the rotating cylinder 7. As shown in Fig. 3, a scale plate 10 is installed on the side far away from the worktable 2 on the rotary cylinder 7, and the scale of the scale plate 10 is arranged along the rotation direction of the motor 3. Therefore, after adjusting the motor 3 angle, by observing the position relationship between the motor 3 and the scale on the scale plate 10, we can judge whether there is error in the rotation angle of motor 3, so as to facilitate the staff to make corresponding adjustment. As shown in Fig. 3, the rack 1 is located on the same upper surface of the worktable 2, and a baffle plate is installed on the same upper surfaceThe moving frame 11 of the moving frame 6 and the transverse cylinder 12 for driving the moving frame 11 to move along the floor tile factory moving direction of the sliding block of the horizontal rodless cylinder 9 are provided with a longitudinal cylinder 13 for driving the baffle plate 6 to move up and down. Therefore, in the process of changing the installation angle of the motor 3, the transverse cylinder 12 can be started first to drive the mobile frame 11 to adjust in the horizontal direction, and then the longitudinal cylinder 13 can be started to drive the baffle plate 6 to adjust vertically on the mobile frame 11, so as to change the installation position of the baffle plate 6 and avoid the baffle plate 6 from affecting the adjustment of the motor 3. As shown in FIGS. 2 and 4, the moving frame 11 is in the shape of a fan, and the baffle plate 6 is located in the opening of the mobile frame 11. The guide rail 14 is arranged on both sides of the opening of the mobile frame 11, and both sides of the baffle plate 6 slide in the guide rail 14. The moving track of the baffle plate 6 can be limited through the guide rail 14, so that the movement of the baffle plate 6 is more stable. Furthermore, the baffle plate 6 slides on both sides of the guide rail 14, and two rollers 15 against the inner wall of the guide rail 14 are installed. The roller 15 can effectively reduce the friction between the baffle plate 6 and the guide rail 14, and reduce the unnecessary mechanical loss. It is worth mentioning that both the upper and lower ends of the baffle plate 6 are installed with a brush block 16 whose outer surface fits the inner wall of the guide rail 14, and the side where the brush block 16 contacts the inner wall of the guide rail 14 is fixed with a wiping layer 17 made of superfine fiber material. Therefore, during the moving process of baffle plate 6, the brush block 16 can clean the debris attached to the guide rail 14, so as to avoid the debris affecting the movement of baffle plate 6. As shown in Fig. 5, baffle plate 6 faces the side of Table 2A protective pad 18 is fixed, which can effectively reduce the impact of the die steel on the baffle plate 6 during positioning, protect the die steel and avoid damage to the baffle plate 6. The working process and beneficial effects of the utility model are as follows: when it is necessary to change the processing size of the die steel, the vertical rodless cylinder 8 is first started to drive the rotary cylinder 7 to move downward, and then the horizontal rodless cylinder 9 is started to drive the vertical rodless cylinder 8 to move away from the worktable 2, and then the rotary cylinder 7 is started to drive the motor 3 to rotate, so as to change the processing angle of the grinding wheel 4; Then, by controlling vertical rodless cylinder 8, horizontal rodless cylinder 9 and moving rodless cylinder 5 to make grinding wheel 4 contact with die steel, the chamfering of die steel can be realized. To sum up, compared with the way to change the processing size of die steel by disassembling and adjusting the motor 3 and baffle plate 6, the installation angle of motor 3 is changed by controlling the horizontal rodless cylinder 9, the vertical rodless cylinder 8 and the rotating cylinder 7, which is convenient to operate, and can be applied to different processing sizes and improve the processing efficiency. The above-mentioned is only the preferred implementation mode of the utility model, and the protection scope of the utility model is not limited to the above-mentioned embodiments, and all technical solutions under the idea of the utility model belong to the protection scope of the utility model. It should be pointed out that for ordinary technical personnel in the technical field, some improvements and refinements without departing from the principle of the utility model shall also be regarded as the protection scope of the utility model. Technical features:
A chamfering machine for chamfering die steel comprises a frame (1), on which a worktable (2) for placing die steel, a grinding wheel (4) for chamfering die steel, a motor (3) for driving the grinding wheel (4) to rotate, and a moving rodless cylinder (5) for driving the grinding wheel (4) to approach the die steel The motor (3) is arranged on the sliding block of the moving rodless air cylinder (5), the frame (1) is provided with a baffle plate (6), the lower end of the baffle plate (6) is provided with a gap between the working table (2), and the grinding wheel (4) is located in the gap, which is characterized in that: the frame (1) is provided with a rotary cylinder (7) driving the motor (3) to rotate, and the rotating cylinder (7) is provided with a rotating cylinder (7) which drives the motor (3) to rotate The axis of the rotary table is perpendicular to the output shaft of the motor (3), the frame (1) is provided with a vertical rodless cylinder (8) which drives the rotary cylinder (7) to move up and down, the slider on the moving rodless cylinder (5) is provided with a horizontal rodless cylinder (9) which drives the vertical rodless cylinder (8) to move horizontally, and the sliding direction of the horizontal rodless cylinder (9) is vertical The rotary table axis of the rotary cylinder (7) is arranged.
The one for chamfering of die steel according to claim 1A chamfering machine is characterized in that: the frame (1) is provided with a moving frame (11) for installing the baffle plate (6) and a transverse cylinder (12) for driving the moving frame (11) to move along the moving direction of the sliding block of the horizontal rodless cylinder (9), and the moving frame (11) is provided with a longitudinal cylinder (13) for driving the baffle plate (6) to move up and down.
A chamfering machine for chamfering die steel according to claim 2, which is characterized in that the moving frame (11) is in the shape of a cross, the baffle plate (6) is located in the opening of the moving frame (11), the guide rails (14) are arranged on both sides of the opening of the moving frame (11), and both sides of the baffle plate (6) slide in the guide rail (14).
A chamfering machine for chamfering die steel according to claim 3, which is characterized in that the baffle plate (6) slides in the guide rail (14), and rollers (15) against the inner wall of the guide rail (14) are arranged on both sides.
A chamfering machine for chamfering die steel according to claim 3, which is characterized in that the upper and lower ends of the baffle plate (6) are provided with brush blocks (16) whose outer surface fits with the inner wall of the guide rail (14).
A chamfering machine for chamfering die steel according to claim 5, which is characterized in that a wiping layer (17) is arranged outside the brush block (16), and the wiping layer (17) is made of superfine fiber material.
The chamfering machine for chamfering die steel according to claim 1, which is characterized in thatA protective pad (18) is arranged on one side of the baffle plate (6) toward the worktable (2).
A chamfering machine for chamfering die steel according to claim 1, which is characterized in that the rotary cylinder (7) is provided with a scale plate (10), and the scale of the scale plate (10) is arranged along the rotation direction of the motor (3).
technical summary the utility model discloses a chamfering machine for die steel chamfering, which relates to the technical field of workpiece chamfering. The technical key points are as follows: the machine frame is provided with a worktable, a grinding wheel, a motor and a moving rod less cylinder, the motor is arranged on the sliding block of the moving rod less cylinder, the frame is provided with a baffle plate, the lower end of the baffle plate is provided with a gap between the grinding wheel and the working table, the frame is provided with a rotary cylinder, and the axis of the rotary table of the rotary cylinder is perpendicular to the electricity The output shaft of the machine is provided with a vertical rodless cylinder which drives the rotary cylinder to move up and down, and the sliding block on the moving rod less cylinder is provided with a driveThe sliding block moving direction of the horizontal rod less cylinder is perpendicular to the axis of the rotary table of the rotary cylinder. The utility model has the advantages of convenient adjustment of the installation angle of the motor, application of different processing sizes and improvement of the processing efficiency. Technical R & D personnel: Chen Jianjun protected technology users: Xiamen Dongfu industry and Trade Co., Ltd. technology R & D date: 2019.10.30 technology announcement date: 2020.06.16 technology development date: June 16, 2020
2020.08.26 18:40 edanroeI am 38 years old, make $175,000, live in San Francisco, and work as a Project Manager
Section One: Assets and Debt Annual Bonus: 20-30% of my salary Retirement Balance: ~$150,000 between 401k and Roth IRA. My salary has nearly doubled in the past four years, and I’m playing catch up. My goal is to have $300,000 saved by 40. I started saving for retirement around 23 or 24 but missed a few years here and there due to pay cuts and living abroad. HSA: $7,000. My company funds the annual limit at the beginning of the year because we have a high deductible health plan, but for the past two years I’ve been saving this contribution to use as another retirement vehicle. I pay for medical expenses out-of-pocket. Annual eye, dental and physical exams are covered. Emergency Fund: $40,000 Travel Fund: $3,000 Investment accounts: ~$13,000 Grad school savings account: $2,129 (I just paid Fall quarter’s $8,200 tuition) Checking account balance: ~$1,000 each payday. I pay off my credit cards in full a couple times a month. Credit card debt: $0. Two years ago, I had $6,000 in cc debt and no emergency fund. Grateful for how far I’ve come. Student loan debt: $0. I studied Political Science in the early aughts and graduated owing $50,000 between Sallie Mae and the government. I finally paid them off in 2017 and had zero help from my parents. Net worth: ~$215,000 Pronouns: She/her Section Two: Income Monthly Gross: $14,583 Monthly take-home: $7,840 Section Three: Expenses Rent: $1,900. I live alone in a studio apartment. Retirement contribution: 13% of my salary ($1,694 monthly). I also put $6,000 in a backdoor Roth. The company match is 4%. Savings contribution: $3,000 (I’m about to start shifting this to investments) Investment contributions: $500-$1,000 Debt payments: $0 Donations: No set donations but it’s between $5-10k per year, usually from my bonus. I’ve been giving to COVID relief efforts for LGBTQ folx and BLM efforts recently. Electric: ~$30 Wifi: $60 Cell phone: Paid for by work Subscriptions: $200 (Netflix, Spotify, Chegg, Google storage, iCloud, Feather furniture rental) Regular therapy $300 (I go biweekly) Annual Expenses: Grad school tuition: $25,000 per year. I saved enough to cash flow this year’s tuition from my bonus last year. Work reimburses $10,000 per year. Chase Sapphire Reserve: $450 (will be $550 next year) Amazon Prime Student: $59 Renters Insurance: $140 Day 1 - Tuesday Daily total: $18.49 3:30 a.m. A car alarm is blaring outside and I’m in a hypnagogic state for about 30 minutes. 8:30 a.m. Real alarm goes off. I’ve been WFH since mid-March when our SIP went into effect, but I’ve been going into my actual office a couple of days a week lately. My desk there is much better for my neck, back, wrists, and mental health, and there’s no one around. Have some Trader Joe’s instant coffee with a splash of hazelnut creamer. It’s honestly better than the drip at the cafe near my place. 10 a.m. I post a room divider on Craigslist to sell since I’m doing some redecorating. I’m planning to put some plants I ordered in its place to serve as a barrier between my “bedroom” and “living room.” Oh, studio apartment Tetris. It sells almost immediately and the guy Venmos me $125 even though he’s not coming to pick it up until tomorrow morning. Score! 10:30 a.m. Eat some meatballs in marinara for breakfast I got from the deli counter the other night for dinner but forgot to eat. Throw on blue jeans, a striped shirt, one of the cloth masks made by my mom with a coffee filter liner, and my helmet. I’ll just say this now, people in SF are great about mask-wearing, and any store, indoors or out, requires them. I own many. 11 a.m. Ride my e-scooter to the office to prep for a call at noon and another one at 1:30 p.m. I’m in an online master’s program and get a notification that our final group project has been graded and posted in Canvas for my Finance class. I wind up with 94% in the course overall. Go me! I text my mom and the woman I’m seeing long-distance, J., the good news. They are my biggest cheerleaders. 12 p.m. Meetings meetings meetings until 2. Eat some chips and drink a can of Kombucha from the office kitchen. The rest of the workday is spent updating our website with some new photos and compiling a monthly report that needs to go out this week. I also discuss my birthday plans with a friend. I suggested a few of us visit a lake that I had never actually been to but drove by a few weeks ago and thought it was gorgeous. However, the planning is getting cumbersome and logistics around social distancing and renting a boat for the day are proving complicated. I decide to suggest a new plan tomorrow and ask everyone to hang at a local park instead. 5:30 p.m. Ride my scooter home. This is a recent endeavor after deciding taking the bus was too risky and walking home at night has been sketchy on more than several occasions the past few months. I look like a total dork but it’s fun and easy so who cares. 7:30 p.m. Order a turkey club sandwich and fries for pickup from a restaurant around the corner I had a $10 coupon code for. The difference is $7 with the change rounded up for the Grubhub relief fund. I leave a $5 cash tip ($12). Stop at the bodega for a can of bubbly rose. $18.49 8 p.m. Eat, drink, and catch up on TV. I have the week off from school before Fall quarter starts next week, so I watch the first episode of a new show called Lovecraft Country because I love actress Jurnee Smollett. Some friends have read the book it’s based on and now I want to read it too. Day 2 - Wednesday Daily total: $133.97 7 a.m. Awake too early but just go with it and start a book titled Patsy I’d been saving for when I had this week-long break from school. Receive texts from a couple friends saying there are wildfires in the area near the lake we were planning to go to, and people are evacuating. Feel awful for everyone going through this on top of everything else. 9:30 a.m. I have a video call at 10 so I get ready. Wear another striped shirt and yesterday’s blue jeans, which has become my quarantine uniform. I have six or seven of them now in varying styles and colors. I told myself the stripes add a little razzle dazzle. The room divider buyer arrives so I haul it down to the lobby. 10 a.m. Drink warm water with lemon during the call. It’s about the environmental design review for one of our upcoming projects. Probably should have ordered a side salad instead of fries last night because I’m having mild heartburn. 12:30 p.m. Walk to the bodega across the street for smoothie ingredients: raspberries, oranges, beets, avocado, and a few bananas. I bought a single-serve Ninja blender last month (highly recommend) and have been on a smoothie binge. I’m iffy on the beets...will see what I can concoct with them. Make a smoothie with berries, banana, spinach, frozen avocado, and unsweetened coconut milk. $17.15 1:30 p.m. Focus on getting close to inbox zero and compiling the report to send to our partners since I’m taking PTO tomorrow and Friday. J. texts saying she made dinner reservations (my love language) for when she comes to visit in a couple weeks. The place has a nice patio and looks like they’ve figured out how to properly distance the diners. Run down the street to pick up some wash & fold (I send out the bedding and towels every two weeks). $32.50 5 p.m. Break to eat a frozen burrito and run back to the bodega for lemons, limes, Tate’s gluten-free cookies, and a 6-pack of Fort Point Strawberry Darling which winds up being a bit sour for my taste but I can bring it to the park hang this weekend (if it still happens). The air quality right now isn’t great. Find a couple of packages addressed to me in my lobby. Birthday gifts from two friends. Feeling loved and my birthday isn’t until Saturday. I usually don’t make a big to-do about it but maybe I was feeling antsy this year due to a lack of regular human interaction and motions generally at everything.$21.48 8:30 p.m. I’ve been watching the DNC and whittling work emails down to inbox twenty. I’ll take it. Kamala Harris is sharp, and it’s time to log off. I FaceTime J. for a bit and wind up having to schedule a work call for tomorrow morning but am otherwise looking forward to having some time to myself. 11 p.m. Late night shopping on the Target app before bed. I order two swimsuit tops in different sizes. They sent me the wrong size a couple of weeks ago, so I am trying this again. I also get a Bona microfiber cleaning cloth and a Pixi shade stick in Copper Glaze. $62.84 Thursday - Day 3 Daily total: $17.19 8:30 a.m. Awake before my 9 a.m. Sonos alarm. I have it set to peaceful music, so I usually just let it play. Check the news for a status update on the wildfires and see some awful photos. Poke my head out the window to assess the sky and weather. My call is at 10 so I make my cheapo coffee and start some laundry in my portable washing machine. Watch the latest episode of Married at First Sight which I discuss with my bff. We were incensed after the poor matches last season, yet here we are again. Look at Clare V. purses online while hoping the MAFS couples are still happy after the honeymoon. J. randomly Venmos $10 for a latte. She’s so thoughtful and cute. 11 a.m. Call over. I get back to life admin and my laundry list of things to do which includes reserving a rental car to run various errands and get around this weekend. I also make an appointment to visit a Black-women-owned nursery in Oakland tomorrow, post a few items on Craigslist for sale, and research air purifiers. I’m considering the $499 Dyson one but that’s a big impulse buy. 3:30 p.m. The bed I ordered from Feather is delivered. Two nice gentlemen dismantle the old one and assemble the new one in about 20 minutes. I just started using Feather, a furniture rental company, to try out a new bed and couch. The free delivery, assembly, and swap outs were the selling points for me. I love the Floyd sofa I got last week. 6:30 p.m. I lose track of time but see if J. wants to have a date tonight which usually involves Netflix watch party. I order a steak salad for pickup from the restaurant across the street and get 25% off my first order. I leave a $5 cash tip when I pick it up. I’m not really in the mood for a movie so we just FT for a few hours and I head to bed. $17.19 Friday - Day 4 Daily total $256.61 10 a.m. True PTO day today. A Craigslist buyer comes to pick up a bench I posted for sale ($40 earned). I spend the morning putzing around, beautifying, and getting ready to pick up the rental car. 1:30 p.m. The rental car company will charge $125 when I drop it off Monday morning, however, my $300 CSR annual travel credit just reset so I’m expecting it to be credited back right away. 3 p.m. Arrive for my appointment at the plant shop. I LOVE IT HERE. It’s a little outdoor oasis and all the plants are healthy and gorgeous. The women running it were lovely too. I purchase three 6” plant babies: mother-in-law's tongue, Wandering Jew, and polka dot. $85 4 p.m. I’m at IKEA looking for a plant stand and room divider option for my studio. I wind up with a few picture frames, sheer curtains and a rod, two throw pillows and covers, a lampshade, and plastic hangers for laundry drying. The shelf I wanted for the plants was out of stock. $117.59 6 p.m. Stop at a Target nearby to grab a bottle of wine for a dinner party tonight. There should be six of us in my friend’s backyard. Also grab a NYX lippy, toilet paper, and a USB cord since my phone is about to die. $54.02 6:30 p.m. Arrive at my friend’s yard and it is lovely. Flowering bougainvillea and a lemon tree hug the dining table. Her street is lined with the tallest palm trees and it just feels so California. After dinner, wine, cake, and dancing, I head home smiling and happy around midnight. Call a very sleepy J. to give her a rundown. Saturday - Day 5 $58.27 9 a.m. Awake to Happy Birthday messages from family and friends. My mom and stepdad call and I chat with them for a bit. Mom sent me a lovely bouquet of flowers and they both pitched in to buy my e-scooter earlier this month. I have leftover dinner party cake and tea for breakfast. The cake was made with quinoa flour and carob chips, so I’m calling it healthy. 11 a.m. People are (understandably) backing out of the park hang due to the poor air quality today, but a few friends are still down so I start getting ready. I check BAAQMD’S website and it’s in the unhealthy range for sensitive groups, although I wonder if we’re all more at risk due to COVID. My sister calls and I see she’s sent me $150 in birthday money. I sent her this exact amount for her birthday last month; I agree it is a bit silly. J. also sends me $140 for a floor mirror I’d been eyeing. It is WAY TOO MUCH because I make triple what she makes. I vow to sneak it back to her somehow. Put on a midi-length polka dot romper and rainbow Tevas, pick up my friend about 10 minutes away and head to the park. We stop at a bodega in her neighborhood and I run in to grab chips, salsa, guac, and brie. $33.32 3 p.m. Having fun at an empty park spread out in a circle on our own blankets. We debate the discographies of Brandy and Monica (it’s Brandy, no contest) over snacks and wine. I ask everyone to take a pic of someone else with my Instax camera as little keepsakes. My car friend gives me a card and a bottle of wine. I really appreciate these folx. 8 p.m. Car friend and I grab chicken tacos and Mexican limeade from a place with outdoor seating before I drop her home. $24.95 10 p.m. Home and FT with a sleepy J. for a bit and watch Frozen II in bed while responding to Instagram birthday wishes. I gotta say it was a good day (Ice Cube voice). Sunday - Day 6 Daily total: $219.17 7 a.m. Why am I awake? Is this the waking up early in your old age everyone speaks of? I have never been an early riser. Text with J. since she’s two hours ahead and rises with the roosters. Stare at the comically hideous IKEA pendant lamp shade I put up yesterday. It looks like a wet wad of toilet paper cum crumpled up homework. I decide to head back to IKEA after seeing the one in Palo Alto has the glass shelf unit I want to house the plants. 10 a.m. I want to take a self-portrait in my living room since my coffee table is currently full of said plants and three bouquets of flowers and it looks like a mini botanical garden. I decide to curl my hair and put on makeup and lipstick. I pair it with a bright yellow floral dress and gold jewelry. 12 p.m. Photoshoot over and I catch up in my group chat before making the trip to Palo Alto. The IKEA line is snaking around barriers in the parking lot like the entrance to a music festival. I regret this decision immediately and decide to head downtown instead to get lunch and stop by West Elm. I bookmarked a mirror there but want to see it in person. The mirror is stunning but at $500 I’m not ready to bite just yet. I get soup and salad at Mendocino Farms and eat on their patio ($16.55 with tip). The ice cream shop across the street is calling to me. I get a scoop of Brown Sugar Banana with hot fudge and almonds ($8.50 with tip) and FT J. to show her because she’s obsessed with ice cream. With sustenance, I head back to IKEA and the line has thankfully died down. I get a new lamp shade, the shelf unit, and another picture frame for a limited-run poster by a local artist that says “what the fuck” — because 2020 ($102.03). $127.08 5 p.m. Stop by Target, Trader Joe’s, and the gas station ($20 offset by CSR) in the city before making my way home. I book a car every few months and do all.the.errands. I was hoping to find planters at Target but no such luck. I get a can of shaving cream and some comfortable looking olive-green paper bag waist pants ($31.67). TJ’s haul includes collagen protein powder, avocado, lettuce, labneh, balela salad, pineapple chunks, flax bread, corn chowder, and a bottle of wine ($42.85). The cashier sees it was my birthday yesterday (I know) and he disappears for a minute only to return with a little bouquet of flowers. I get emotional. $74.52 Sidebar: The past few years have really shown me that your friends will show up for you and people love you for just being your authentic self. I am always so blown away by it. I am working on getting better about accepting and feeling like I am deserving of generosity and love. My therapist is helping. 7 p.m. I am late to the Lovecraft Country watch party and probably have to skip it tonight, but I luck out and find a parking spot in front of my building. Have corn chowder with some leftover cheese and crackers from the park for dinner and pineapple chunks with a leftover cupcake for dessert. I am determined to put the shelf unit together and put up the new lamp shade tonight. I order a few self-watering planters on Amazon ($17.57 after a gift card balance is applied). $17.57 2 a.m. Finally in bed after finishing chores neglected from the busy weekend, writing out a few thank you cards, and taking a long, hot shower. I see an email from the Professor warning us the homework this week will take a few hours, so plan accordingly. Monday - Day 7 Daily total: $18 7:30 a.m. No. 8:30 a.m. I return the rental car and walk home before putting myself together for a 10 a.m. Zoom. The rental company emails the receipt ($125.64 offset by CSR). Listen to The Daily while checking various banking apps and see the $300 bonus from opening a Capital One 360 savings account a few months ago was credited. Make a smoothie with frozen spinach, avocado, blueberries, pineapple, collagen protein powder, and unsweetened coconut milk. 11:30 a.m. Still on Zoom while writing this money diary and looking at the syllabus for class (Financial Accounting). It requires an e-textbook, but I sign up for the 14-day trial because the purchase button isn’t working. 12:30 p.m. Break for a lunch of TJ’s Mexicali salad and a side of cheese and crackers. Make my cheapo coffee as well since I’m anticipating a long day of work and school. 3:30 p.m. I’ve been doing what we’ll call working for the past three hours. Now on a call about some ad placements we’re doing for an upcoming virtual event. The next meeting gets canceled, so I play catch up from my PTO days. 5:00 p.m. Decide that’s enough for the workday since I’ll be in the actual office tomorrow morning to meet the IT guys. Unload and reload my mini dishwasher then reread my syllabus to get a better understanding of this week’s assignment. Although my program was already online-based, it’s not all that user-friendly and stuff hides in weird places. I see several other confused individuals have posted on the Ask the Instructor board. 6:30 p.m. Take a study break and order sliders and fries from the pub around the corner. I will likely regret this later when I get heartburn but nothing else sounds good and I rarely feel like cooking (I am Fran Lebowitz in her April New Yorker interview). $18.00 11:00 p.m. I’m texting with a friend about the artwork she’s been posting on Instagram. It’s fantastic and I ask her if it’s for sale, and ask if it was ok that I even asked her that. She’s an interesting, sort of mysterious woman I met through another friend a couple of years ago. She said she’d been quietly selling them but was afraid to really put herself out there. I encourage her to do so immediately. We discuss the pieces I’m interested in and she offers me a much too generous F&F discount. I object but she says, “strangers can pay full price.” I will send her $100 + shipping tomorrow morning once she tallies it up. I shower, watch the season finale of I May Destroy You (whewwww), and make it to bed around midnight. Reflections: I normally budget $800 each paycheck for general spending money; I don’t budget everything out by category. Food is always up there. This was a higher spend week, but I accounted for the household stuff with Craigslist sales and the $300 Capital One bonus. I also made about $350 in birthday money. Overall, it was a great week. Take a shot every time I say birthday. Breakdown: Food & Drink: $218.48 Home: $322.19 Health, Beauty, Clothes: $96.51 Other: $86.52 Weekly Total: $723.70
2020.08.24 05:18 john14325Rebook every WWE PPV (WrestleMania 1 - 37) part 1
WrestleMania 1 Ricky Steamboat vs Don Muraco An opening contest to get the crowd fired up for the new fan favourite on the scene and also a kick start to a feud that will pick up as 1985 rolls on. King Kong Bundy /w Jimmy Hart vs Jimmy Snuka Snuka was on his way out, while Bundy is getting the monster heel push since arriving on the scene. Bundy destroys Snuka on his road to the top of the card. Bruno and David Sammartino vs The Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff /w Freddie Blassie Bruno really should have been involved in David's match at the proper version of this show, so we right that wrong by putting the Living Legend in tag team action in the Garden against the tandem of foreign heels. Junkyard Dog vs Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake /w Johnny V Just a filler match to get the popular JYD on the show with a win to keep the Garden crowd hot The US Express(c) /w Lou Albano vs Paul Orndorff and “Cowboy” Bob Orton World Tag Team Championships A solid title defence for the new tag team champions. Heel miscommunication similar to the end of the original main event takes place towards the end of the match as an errant cast shot from Orton to Orndorff costs the challengers the titles, leading to Orton turning face over the Spring/Summer. Tito Santana vs Greg “The Hammer” Valentine(c) /w Jimmy Hart No DQ match for the Intercontinental Championship The "workrate" match on the card as this hot rivalry gets to play out on the big card. The No DQ stipulation comes from countless title defences on the house show circuit in which Valentine managed to hold onto the gold by way of disqualification/countout. Tito reclaims the I.C belt here as the Garden goes nuts and the feud continues into the summer where the classic cage blow off still takes place. It also gives us our first Mania title change since the tag belts are being retained. Andre The Giant vs Big John Studd /w Bobby Heenan $15,000 Body Slam Challenge Keep the same. Wendi Richter /w Cyndi Lauper vs Fabulous Moolah /w Leilani Kai This means I don't get the Women's title defended on the show, but this is what the feud was all about anyway as Richter is out for revenge on Moolah for costing her the title at the War to Settle the Score. Lauper is in Richter's corner to counter the presence of the new champion and they celebrate the win to Girl's Just Wanna Have Fun. Hulk Hogan /w Mr. T vs Roddy Piper(c) /w Paul Orndorff WWF Championship Piper beats Bob Backlund for the gold in late 1983 and goes on a long run as champion until he’s finally dethroned by Hulk Hogan beginning Hulkamania in the main event of the first ever WrestleMania. The Wrestling Classic Note: Instead of a 16 man tournament we get an 8 man tournament with the winner facing Hulk Hogan for the WWF Championship at WrestleMania 2. Ricky Steamboat vs Randy Savage Since there’s less matches on the card, we can give the matches more time and we open the match with two up and comers and they tear the house down in their first encounter with Savage getting the win. Davey Boy Smith vs Dynamite Kid The two members of The British Bulldogs go at it in a friendly exhibition to see who’s the best and the young Davey Bog Smith gets the win. Junkyard Dog vs Roddy Piper The extremely popular Junkyard Dog gets the win advancing in the tournament. Paul Orndorff vs “Cowboy” Bob Orton Their big feud that started earlier in the year at WrestleMania culminates here with both men wanting to be WWF Champion. Orndorff gets the clean win. Randy Savage vs Junkyard Dog Junkyard Dog gets the win in a great 15 minute match. Davey Boy Smith /w Dynamite Kid vs Paul Orndorff Orndorff gets the win advancing to the finals of the tournament. Paul Orndorff vs Junkyard Dog We advance to the finals of the tournament and Orndorff cheats to beat Junkyard Dog getting nuclear heat from the crowd. Hulk Hogan(c) vs King Kong Bundy /w Bobby Heenan WWF Championship Bundy continues to dominate over the spring and summer and becomes Hogan’s biggest challenge to date. Hogan manages to retain in the main event to send the crowd home happy. WrestleMania 2 Note: The event is held in Madison Square Garden second year in a row instead of three separate locations. British Bulldogs /w Lou Albano vs The Hart Foundation /w Jimmy Hart The night's action kicks off with some hot tag team action as two teams who had been going at it for the better part of the past year face off and fire the crowd up. The Bulldogs get the win to keep them strong as future contenders in the tag title hunt. Mr. T vs “Cowboy” Bob Orton Boxing match The Saturday Night Main Event match happens here. Orton had been knocking out superstars in boxing contests heading into Mania so he issued a challenge for the show, answered by the A-Team star. T knocks the Cowboy out after a couple of rounds to end this angle. Randy Savage(c) /w Miss Elizabeth vs Tito Santana Intercontinental Championship Savage had beaten Tito in controversial fashion earlier in the year to capture the I.C title, so we get a rematch here on the big stage to blow the rivalry off. Savage comes out on top in what is a solid battle between two capable performers - quite the improvement from the I.C match on the original Mania 2 card. Bruno Sammartino vs Roddy Piper /w Bob Orton Our main event in New York sees the retirement match of the Living Legend as he does battle with one of the most hated men in the company. The Hot Rod takes the fight to the legendary former champion but Bruno does not back down. Ultimately interference from Cowboy Bob Orton, making his presence known for the second time in the night, leads Piper winning. A heel beat down follows, but Sammartino comes back and drives the tandem from the ring to go out to a standing ovation. Dream Team(c) /w Johnny V vs The Killer Bees World Tag Team Championships After some back and forth tag team action, the champions retain after heel shenanigans, continuing their reign and setting them up for a run against the Bulldogs over the next few months Leilani Kai vs The Fabulous Moolah(c) Women’s Championship Since we aren't getting another title change on the show, I'm getting a change here to pop the crowd. Since there weren't all that many challengers out there to fill this slot, Kai has turned face, sick of Moolah hogging the spotlight in the division. She gets the win against her former mentor in a quick encounter to fill out the card. William Perry, Bill Fralic, Ernie Holmes, Russ Francis, Harvey Martin & Jimbo Covert (w/Eddie Jones) vs Big John Studd, Iron Sheik, Nikolai Volkoff, Hercules Hernandez, Ted Arcidi & Adrian Adonis (w/Freddie Blassie) We get the NFL vs WWF cross promotional match here in a big ten man tag. Big John Studd leads a team of WWF superstars against the selection of NFL players captained by Chicago's own Refrigerator after taking offence to the NFL stars being part of Mania. This turns into an all out brawl that is thrown out when fighting occurs amongst all the participants in the match. Chicago gets its moment as Perry and Studd have a confrontation as the ring clears, with the Fridge sending the giant packing. Andre The Giant vs King Kong Bundy /w Bobby Heenan The build here is essentially a replica of the Hogan/Bundy feud from the original card, with Bundy going on an unstoppable tear heading into Mania and sidelining the great Andre at the Saturday Night's Main Event a few weeks before. Andre gets his revenge here to end this feud. Jake Roberts vs Ricky Steamboat Jake is fairly new on the scene here and has picked a fight with another rising star in the Dragon. The two put on a solid outing with the Snake going over here with the DDT after some back and forth action. After the match, Steamboat faces the wrath of the python and this feud will continue as the year rolls on. Hoss and Terry Funk /w Jimmy Hart vs Junkyard Dog and Hillbilly Jim Another hot tag match on the show here as JYD recruits another man from down south to battle the redneck Funk brotherhood. This essentially replaces the Funk vs Tito/JYD match from the original card which was one of the highlights of the show. Jim's addition hurts the match a little, but its still a wild brawl. George Steele vs Don Muraco w/ Mr Fuji Filler match here before the main event. Steele gets the win for the crowd as Muraco starts to move down the card. Hulk Hogan (c) vs Paul Orndorff Steel Cage match for the WWF Championship I've accelerated the Hogan/Orndorff feud to kick off before this show so that Hogan can have a big program heading into Mania. Orndorff gets his title shot due to winning The Wrestling Classic. Orndorff uses sneak attacks over the next few months to weaken Hogan and that’s when WWF President Jack Tibet books a steel cage match in the main event of WrestleMania. Hogan manages to retain here to end the night on a high, but the feud will continue and culminate inside a steel cage at The Big Event over the summer. WrestleMania 3 Ricky Steamboat /w George Steele vs Randy Savage(c) w/Miss Elizabeth Intercontinental Championship The match of the night wouldn’t change it for anything. Tito Santana vs Harley Race Loser must bow match The King wins the match forcing Santana to bow but is then beaten down by Santana. Roddy Piper vs Adrian Adonis Hair vs Hair match Piper wins and makes Adonis pass out to the sleeper and proceeds to shave his head. The Hart Foundation vs The British Bulldogs(c) World Tag Team Championships The Hart Foundation win in a great tag team match. Jake Roberts vs The Honky Tonk Man /w Jimmy Hart We keep the feud the same but Roberts manages to get the win. The Rogeaus vs The Dream Team Rogeaus win. Hulk Hogan(c) vs Andre The Giant WWF Championship Perfect main event I’d keep it the same.
2020.08.20 17:32 GreyBuildings679The Thing They Carried
part 2- final My Grandma was a formidable woman, she stood at a good six-feet tall, with broad shoulders and a significant girth that would make a linebacker jealous. She had emigrated from Ireland when she was a young girl, her family settling in the Western part of Washington along the Pacific, and buying up swaths of land, that accumulated into a sizable property of over 110 acres. She was partially handicapped, her right hand mangled, the pinky, ring, and middle fingers worn stumps streaked with accumulated red scar tissue. It was a sore subject, and one she refused to discuss with me, despite my rampant curiosity. I would unintentionally stare at the mass of flesh sometimes, and she would lower her gaze and make a tutting sound, scolding me. My father and she were never particularly close, he had been sent to boarding school as a child, and I don’t think he ever fully forgave her for his exile. When he lost his job, and with no other options we were forced to move in with her, a fact that we all begrudgingly accepted. Grandma’s house in itself was a marvel, an old Victorian with ornate wood carvings and painted in a dark crimson. It stood in the center of a sprawling field of wildflowers and native grasses that was bordered by old-growth forest. The towering trees that called it home, had escaped the genocide of the Washington logging boom, and held with them an ancient quality of some bygone era, demanding reverence. About a mile into the woods was a pristine river, with clear waters, that held a variety of fish, making it a prime fishing spot. I had read the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in my last year of school and fancied myself like the book’s protagonist, relishing in my new environment, and even asking my Dad and Grandma to start calling me Huck, instead of my given name Luke. A request that made my Dad roll his eyes and put his head in his hands. The three of us operated like separate cogs in a machine that summer, with our own specific purposes that required little interaction with each other. Focused on applying for jobs my Dad locked himself away in his office. Whereas my Grandma had her own routine, a bizarre set of rituals she completed every morning without fail. It would start with making a hearty porridge mixed with nuts and berries, which was laid by the base of a small oak tree. She would then stand facing towards the woods, and write small notes on paper, before burying them in the Earth. The last and most peculiar of the ceremonies was she would then unravel a spool of red thread, circling the border of the house, intertwining it in between the trees. She used the same string to make my Dad and I bracelets, which she adorned around our wrists. When I would question her behavior, she would give me a small smile, and say with a slight Irish twang, “Minda ya business now, Luke.” As for myself, I let my imagination run wild, making games for myself to keep occupied, sometimes even going to the creek to try and catch a fish. There were not many people nearby, let alone kids I could play with. Grandma’s neighbors to the South had a daughter my age, around fourteen with frizzy hair and freckles named Maggie. I was coming to the age where girls were just starting to get my attention, and felt a slight wave of nausea when I saw her, butterflies in the stomach. I didn't have a car to take me anywhere or money to spend. As such, I was particularly grateful when Maggie would drop by, whenever she could escape her chores so that we could hang out. It was a scorcher of a day in early July, and after playing outside in the morning, I was laying down on my back in the living room, staring at the ceiling, and marinating in my own sweat. Grandma came through holding a hamper of wet laundry and took her foot poking me in the ribs. “Come on now Luke, no point wasting the day. Help me hang the washing outside.” While the house had a dryer, she was insistent on air drying, claiming the sun made the clothes smell better. Rolling over on my stomach I let out a moan of protest before following. The line was tied up by the side of the house between two magnificent oak trees, red string tied at their bases. “The pins are in the coffee bin over there,” Grandma said, indicating with her chin. It was what she called a white laundry day, the one time of the month when she would clean all our sheets and the tablecloths. I took a handful of pins, stringing up the ivory and beige linens, which billowed around me, like dancing ladies. When I needed more, I went back to the bucket, looking up as I did. To my surprise I saw my Grandma walking in the distance towards the woods, her back turned to me. Curious, and abandoning my laundry duties I scampered after her. She was a good quarter-mile away from me but walking painfully slow. “Grandma! Grandma! Wait up!” I yelled. She was standing towards the periphery of the woods, her greying white hair braided and flapping behind her like a dog’s tail. I felt something seize my wrist, and like a boomerang, I snapped back. Craning my neck, it was my Grandma, clenching tight. “No further now Luke. No further.” Was I dreaming? My eyes went back to the figure in front of me, standing still. I sucked in my breath turning again to the familiar face of my Grandma, she was so close I could see the tiny black pores that speckled the top of her nose. Her eyes were wide, the whites stained red from broken blood vessels. She pulled me away, back in the direction of the house, her good hand like a vise around my arm. Walking away, I felt a cool breeze grace the back of my neck that sent a shiver of goosebumps down my arm. I let my gaze wander, returning to the person or thing still by the woods, this time it was faced towards me, her visage just like my Grandma’s, except for an insidious smile unfurling. I didn’t say anything for the rest of the day and remained quiet during dinner which was a gooey stew of potatoes and beef. My Dad ate heartily, declaring it his favorite meal, placing his hands on his protruding belly. “Go on dear, grab a beer and watch some telly. I’ll tuck Luke in.” Grandma said with a sly eye. She brought up a large mug of tea, placing it on my nightstand, and sat on the corner of my bed. She rubbed her two remaining fingers together on her right hand and looked at me curiously. “Ya seen what I’ve been doing around the house every morning, have you, Luke?” “Yes, Grandma,” I said, watching as her keen eyes narrowed in concentration. “I need to tell you a story of sorts, but I’m going to need you to pay attention, just like if you were at school. Can you do that for me?” I nodded my head. “When I was young, maybe just a bit younger than you, my family and I moved here from Ireland. The reason we left our home was that my Da did something very, very, very bad.” Grandma let out a sigh. “When we came here, we carried something with us, it wasn’t our luggage or anything we could see, we didn’t even know we brought it. I learned to think of it, like a disease, a cold, except it didn’t go away. My sister and I, in rudimentary terms, called it The Isn’t. “The Isn’t?” I repeated, her stiff white chin hairs wobbled, as she bobbed her head up and down. “On account, we are the is.” She said, bringing up her hand to her chest, and placing it on her cherry-colored nightgown, and then resting it on my knee. “And the thing you saw out by the woods today is The Isn’t.” “I need you to pay attention real close now. There are three ways that The Isn’t shows itself, three different forms. The first being what you saw today. A person will come out of the woods on one side, walk across the field, and go into the forest again. Sometimes it will be someone you know, other times it won’t, but they’ll always be moving slow. They don’t talk or go anywhere else but that invisible straight line. Sometimes they’ll stick out their hand as if they’re asking you to take it. Whatever you do, make sure you don’t take that hand. Do you understand me? “Yes,” I said, my mind was racing with questions, but hanging on to every word that was coming out of her mouth. “The second way The Isn’t will come is through a nasty man that sometimes lingers by the property. I wouldn’t want you talking to any strangers, but this man in particular. I only have seen him a handful of times but he smells something awful, like sulfur and fruit past its prime. Be wary as he’s a tricky fella, he’ll try and bargain with you, get you to trade something for something else. No matter what he has, whether it be gold coins or gemstones the size of my head, don’t you dare trade with him. You’ll have to say, I won’t trade before he’ll go on his way.” I felt sick to my stomach, overwhelmed. The dinner from earlier began to gurgle and bubble in my stomach. I could feel the warm liquid entering my throat. “The last, and the most horrible in my opinion, is The Isn’t will be like when it walks across the field, but this time it will talk, just as I am talking to you here right now, it will be an exact likeness, an undetectable difference. I remember one time I spent all day talking to a friend of my father's in the woods, turns out it was The Isn't and I was none the wiser." Grandma cleared her throat, and her voice lowered. “There’s a cave, about two miles from the river. It’s hidden, and if you walked by it you might not even see it, but it runs deep, real deep. If I had to guess, that’s where The Isn’t lives. When the Isn’t comes in its third form it will try to convince you to follow it into the cave. Don’t follow it, no matter what.” I bit my lip feeling my body tremble, my heart raced under my cotton pajamas. “What happens? What happens if you take the hand of The Isn’t or bargain, or follow it into the cave? What happens?” There was a weariness about my Grandma, her shoulders slumped forward. She let out a deep breath, about to say something, when my Dad called, “Ma! The dishwasher’s acting up again!” He said, his loud voice bellowing from downstairs. She got up from the bed, moving to the doorframe, hesitating before she left. “If any of those things happen, I won’t be able to save you, my dear Luke.” I was riddled with anxiety with this newfound information and became increasingly anxious as I went about my days, always looking behind my shoulder, jumping at the slightest loud noise. Maggie lost her patience with me, saying “You remind me of a frayed rope.” Marching off towards her home. The first time I saw The Isn’t again I went running back into the house, locking my door and cowering underneath the covers. The second time, I ran inside, but held my breath, looking out the window as it went past. The third time I went about my business, all but ignoring the intrusion. The Isn’t tended to materialize at odd hours, at the brink of dawn or late at night. As it appeared, the birds, crickets, and all the other chatty wildlife would go mute, as if they sensed something abnormal, something wrong, in their presence. The Isn’t had a clear preference towards my Grandma’s form, though sometimes it would be someone unrecognizable, a young girl, an old man, one time a wobbling toddler. I admittedly became complacent, underestimating The Isn’t. Was this what I had been so petrified of? I got cocky. Leaning against one of the oak trees I was staring out into the field when a young heavy set woman, stark naked came into view. Her greasy hair clung to her bulging back fat, that trembled as she moved. Her legs were thick, pockmarked like whip cream, and coming together at the intersection was her horrible hairy sex, bright pink and angry looking. Her hands were clasped by her sides, she was moving with a sense of urgency, and for a moment I questioned if it was The Isn’t or a real person. As The Isn’t approached the woods on the other side, she turned, pushing out her hand, as if she was willing, almost daring me to take it. I smirked, puckering my lips, taunting the invite. The woman’s face remained unchanged, as she began to convulse, her Jello like body violently moving back and forth, twisting, and bending her back, till her head was almost level with her knees. All the while, her eyes bearing into me, never breaking contact, as she propelled herself into the forest. I was unnerved and retreated back to the house. I didn’t see The Isn’t for a week after that. In the meantime, I began seeing Maggie more, who asked me to take her into town for a movie. I agreed, not wanting to admit to myself that I was going on a date. The day of our big date arrived, and that afternoon, I got my fishing gear heading to the creek and parking myself under a large cedar tree, casting my line into the moving waters. My eyes felt heavy, the warm glittering sun rays came down from atop the forest canopy, kissing my skin, I dozed off. I awoke to a smell, a brutal and pungent combination of sulfur and rotten fruit, that filled my nostrils, making my insides quake. The hairs on the back of my neck stood upright. Inside my rib cage, my heart began to palpitate, rattling away, as if my body understood before my mind what was coming. Jolting upright I surveyed my surroundings. In a moment of confusion, my panic subsided, as everything around me looked normal. From where I was seated, the river pushed up against the bank on the other side, which stood about a foot taller, constructed of rocks and exposed tree roots whithered away at by erosion. The trees opposite to me were blackened and mangled, deceiving my eyes to what was hidden amongst them. Just as my heart rate was beginning to drop, I saw a man, standing across from me. He was camouflaged into the environment, clothed in decaying, matted clothes. He was skinny, gawky, and bent, his limbs elongated, and his body contorted in an unnatural way. Worst of all was his face, like his garments, his skin was weathered, with a consistency of tissue paper, paled to a light sickly grey, that his hollowed black eyes shone out from. He sauntered to the edge of the bank, he moved like a marionette, as if invisible strings were pulling at extremities, making them flail about in multiple directions. “That… sure is a nice fish.” He said, his voice deep and cluttered like he was gurgling stones as he spoke. From my position, my eyes went to the rod in front of me, on the hook was a fat wiggling trout. A lapse of excitement and joy, provided a needed alleviation from The Isn’t as I pulled it onto the shore, basking in the glory of my catch, it was the biggest I had caught yet, maybe a ten-pounder. “I’m mighty hungry.” The grey-faced man said, opening his mouth, he only had several yellowed teeth, that looked like they were just hanging on by a string of skin. He stuck out his tongue, wide, white, and bristly, making a smacking sound as it circled his lips. “Sorry,” I said, heeding my Grandma’s advice not to trade, and I began to pack up my gear, anxious now to get away from The Isn’t. His mouth had become downturned, staring at me blankly. His expression reminded me of a look my old neighbor’s dog had when I finished a bit of food without giving him any. “I got so many things.” The man opened his jacket and out fell a pile of golden coins plopping into the water. His hand disappeared into his jacket pocket, retrieving a diamond the size of a baseball, shinning in the light with clarity. “Anything you say. Anything you want.” My mind went numb seeing the treasures, continuing to pile in front of him. My eyes clung to gold, as I drifted, thinking about bringing it home to my Dad, telling him we wouldn’t need to worry about money, or him getting a job now. That we would be okay, and all for just a fish. It seemed foolish not to take the man up on his offer, downright stupid. He came closer, stepping down from the ridge with a long leg into the water, and propelling himself a foot away from where I was standing. His smell was even more poignant than before. Up close it became clear that the deteriorating flesh on his face was moving, festering with insects and maggots their outlines indents underneath the skin. I caught my breath. “No thank you,” I said spinning around heading back towards home. Ahead I could see the clearing of the field when my view became blocked by a shadow. It was him again, this time leaning against a tree. His face turned towards me in a crooked grin. “I’m huwngwy… please feed me.” He pleaded, sliding to the ground, and crawling on all fours, like a wounded animal. “Be…be…. Merciful.” “No!” I said, crying now, I was petrified, my bladder let go, a cascade of urine coming down my pants. The grey-faced man changed his demeanor, snarling, his chin jutted out. “Come on you fucking, shit eating maggot.” He jumped back onto his feet, creeping towards me. “Give me the fucking fish or I’ll slice you open from your asshole to your eyeballs.” He began to laugh, a wicked cackle that made my blood run cold. He was singing, his voice high and chilling, “Gut you open like fish, eat all your tiny bits, your eyes, your nose, your juicy toes. Your goopy brain, I’ll eat it up. Feed myself till I’m stuffed. Till there’s nothing left of you. lick your bones till they’re clean, throw them back to the stream.” A line of drool fell from his mouth. He was licking and smacking away. “Here!” I said and panicked threw the fish at him, leaving my rod behind, and veering away. I ran hard, till I was out of breath, and my ribs hurt. Gasping I made my way out of the forest, I could see Grandma’s red house, and shot myself towards its direction. Stumbling towards the entrance, I heard my name, “Luke!” Turning my head, there was Maggie. She had straightened her unruly hair and was wearing a light blue summer dress. She looked as lovely as a cold pitcher of lemonade on a hot summer day. In the midst of everything, I had forgotten about our date. Jogging up to Maggie I felt my cheeks redden as I realized I was in soiled pants. “Hey,” I said still struggling for air. “I’m so sorry, but can we do a raincheck?” Maggie’s brow furrowed, “You forgot, didn’t you?” “I just don’t feel so good.” I didn’t know what to say, so I looked at the ground avoiding eye contact with her. “Hey. Don’t worry about it. Why don’t we do a picnic tomorrow?” I could tell she felt bad for me. “You can make the sandwiches though. I’ll come by around noon.” She waved goodbye, as I stood there, mortified. Sprinting into the house, I slammed the door behind me. I declined dinner that night and took a shower, the water scalding hot, I scrubbed myself, till my skin was pink like raw chicken. As the water washed over me, I ran through the events of the day, I didn’t break any rules, I didn’t trade with The Isn’t, the strange grey-faced man. I should be fine. I repeated the words like a lullaby. A storm had come in, the rain was splattering on the windowpane, as thunder murmured not too far away. Sleep evaded me, as I lay on the bed, eyes open, when I smelt it again, that rotten egg smell, that filled me with dread. Stumbling out of bed, I went to the window, looking out onto the field, and squinting to see if I could see The Isn’t. There was a loud thump below me, looking downwards, I jumped back. Clinging to the base of a swinging tree was the grey-faced man, holding and climbing upwards, his monstrous limbs bent like a daddy long legs. He shot me a smile, his mouth opening with those horrible jagged teeth. I fell hitting the wood flooring and scooting to the wall, where I sat paralyzed. Amongst the hallowing wind, there was a sound of scurrying, he was inching his way closer. A loud boom of thunder was followed by lightning that lit up the sky with light, as it did the grey-faced man came into view in front of my window. I tried to scream but I couldn’t, my throat sealed shut. My window being opened, emitting a sharp squeaking sound as a gust a wind forced its way in, along with that debilitating putrid smell. There he was, his neck extended in my room, drool and rain dripped onto the floors. From his pocket, he took out the trout from earlier. “Good eats.” He said, ripping into the fish’s flesh, chunks of meat scattered onto his clothes and his face. He sucked away at its eyes, popping them into his mouth, licking the dead carcass. Extending his arm, he opened his hand, revealing a palm-full of precious gems, colorful rubies, emeralds, and sapphires that glistened in the dark. “Trade.” He said gurgling. Something clicked inside my head. “No! No! No!” I screamed. “I don’t want to trade with you!” As I said it, the lights in his eyes went out, like a candle being extinguished. He slunk back from the window, retreating into the night. Heaving with tears running down my face, the door of my bedroom was flung open. My Dad went for the light switch, flooding my room in warm yellow light. “Luke, what the hell?” He looked at me, his face contorted in concern. A dead fish lay on the wet floor. Later I pressed my ear against the door as I could hear my father yelling at my Grandma that night as the storm raged on. I only caught bits of it. “You pulled the same shit on me when I was younger.” “How dare you scare him, terrorize him with your bullshit.” “You’ll never see us again. EVER!” The next morning the weather subsided and there seemed to be a relative peace in the house. Sitting at the breakfast table, my eyes went back and forth between my Grandma and Dad like a ping pong ball, trying to glean some indication of what had happened. When my Dad put his breakfast plate in the sink, retreating upstairs, my Grandma whose gaze had been downwards, met my stare, and indicating for us to go outside. I told her what had happened with the grey-faced man near the river and the night before. She made a tutting sound when I mentioned how I gave him the fish. When I was done talking she let out a sigh, “You got lucky my Luke. The Isn’t seems to be more brazen than from what I remember, never seen it come by the house, not even close.” She picked up a wet piece of string on the ground examining it. “I promised your Da I wouldn’t hang the red thread anymore. The Isn’t doesn’t like red.” Towards the tree line, a figure emerged. It was The Isn’t in my Grandma’s likeness. I had become so used to it by now, I didn’t bat an eye. “Can’t we show him?” I said. “I mean if he sees you here, and The Isn’t over there in your form, he’ll have to believe The Isn’t is real, won’t he? “I’m afraid, trying to show him anything now will just make him angrier.” There was a sadness in her eyes, “And just so you know, that’s not my form The Isn’t is using.” I looked to her, confused. “It’s my twin sister, Margret’s form.” She was touching her mutilated right hand as he spoke. I knew that my Grandma had a sister, but not that they were twins. “The Isn’t took her when we were barely thirteen.” A tear slid down her cheek, and she held up her right hand, sticking out her two remaining fingers. “It almost got me as well.”
2020.08.20 00:45 GreyBuildings679The thing they carried- part 2
Jolting upright I surveyed my surroundings. In a moment of confusion, my panic subsided, as everything around me looked normal. From where I was seated, the river pushed up against the bank on the other side, which stood about a foot taller, constructed of rocks and exposed tree roots whithered away at by erosion. The trees opposite to me were blackened and mangled, deceiving my eyes to what was hidden amongst them. Just as my heart rate was beginning to drop, I saw a man, standing across from me. He was camouflaged into the environment, clothed in decaying, matted clothes. He was skinny, gawky, and bent, his limbs elongated, and his body contorted in an unnatural way. Worst of all was his face, like his garments, his skin was weathered, with a consistency of tissue paper, paled to a light sickly grey, that his hollowed black eyes shone out from. He sauntered to the edge of the bank, he moved like a marionette, as if invisible strings were pulling at extremities, making them flail about in multiple directions. “That… sure is a nice fish.” He said, his voice deep and cluttered like he was gurgling stones as he spoke. From my position, my eyes went to the rod in front of me, on the hook was a fat wiggling trout. A lapse of excitement and joy, provided a needed alleviation from The Isn’t as I pulled it onto the shore, basking in the glory of my catch, it was the biggest I had caught yet, maybe a ten-pounder. “I’m mighty hungry.” The grey-faced man said, opening his mouth, he only had several yellowed teeth, that looked like they were just hanging on by a string of skin. He stuck out his tongue, wide, white, and bristly, making a smacking sound as it circled his lips. “Sorry,” I said, heeding my Grandma’s advice not to trade, and I began to pack up my gear, anxious now to get away from The Isn’t. His mouth had become downturned, staring at me blankly. His expression reminded me of a look my old neighbor’s dog had when I finished a bit of food without giving him any. “I got so many things.” The man opened his jacket and out fell a pile of golden coins plopping into the water. His hand disappeared into his jacket pocket, retrieving a diamond the size of a baseball, shinning in the light with clarity. “Anything you say. Anything you want.” My mind went numb seeing the treasures, continuing to pile in front of him. My eyes clung to gold, as I drifted, thinking about bringing it home to my Dad, telling him we wouldn’t need to worry about money, or him getting a job now. That we would be okay, and all for just a fish. It seemed foolish not to take the man up on his offer, downright stupid. He came closer, stepping down from the ridge with a long leg into the water, and propelling himself a foot away from where I was standing. His smell was even more poignant than before. Up close it became clear that the deteriorating flesh on his face was moving, festering with insects and maggots their outlines indents underneath the skin. I caught my breath. “No thank you,” I said spinning around heading back towards home. Ahead I could see the clearing of the field when my view became blocked by a shadow. It was him again, this time leaning against a tree. His face turned towards me in a crooked grin. “I’m huwngwy… please feed me.” He pleaded, sliding to the ground, and crawling on all fours, like a wounded animal. “Be…be…. Merciful.” “No!” I said, crying now, I was petrified, my bladder let go, a cascade of urine coming down my pants. The grey-faced man changed his demeanor, snarling, his chin jutted out. “Come on you fucking, shit eating maggot.” He jumped back onto his feet, creeping towards me. “Give me the fucking fish or I’ll slice you open from your asshole to your eyeballs.” He began to laugh, a wicked cackle that made my blood run cold. He was singing, his voice high and chilling, “Gut you open like fish, eat all your tiny bits, your eyes, your nose, your juicy toes. Your goopy brain, I’ll eat it up. Feed myself till I’m stuffed. Till there’s nothing left of you. lick your bones till they’re clean, throw them back to the stream.” A line of drool fell from his mouth. He was licking and smacking away. “Here!” I said and panicked threw the fish at him, leaving my rod behind, and veering away. I ran hard, till I was out of breath, and my ribs hurt. Gasping I made my way out of the forest, I could see Grandma’s red house, and shot myself towards its direction. Stumbling towards the entrance, I heard my name, “Luke!” Turning my head, there was Maggie. She had straightened her unruly hair and was wearing a light blue summer dress. She looked as lovely as a cold pitcher of lemonade on a hot summer day. In the midst of everything, I had forgotten about our date. Jogging up to Maggie I felt my cheeks redden as I realized I was in soiled pants. “Hey,” I said still struggling for air. “I’m so sorry, but can we do a raincheck?” Maggie’s brow furrowed, “You forgot, didn’t you?” “I just don’t feel so good.” I didn’t know what to say, so I looked at the ground avoiding eye contact with her. “Hey. Don’t worry about it. Why don’t we do a picnic tomorrow?” I could tell she felt bad for me. “You can make the sandwiches though. I’ll come by around noon.” She waved goodbye, as I stood there, mortified. Sprinting into the house, I slammed the door behind me. I declined dinner that night and took a shower, the water scalding hot, I scrubbed myself, till my skin was pink like raw chicken. As the water washed over me, I ran through the events of the day, I didn’t break any rules, I didn’t trade with The Isn’t, the strange grey-faced man. I should be fine. I repeated the words like a lullaby. A storm had come in, the rain was splattering on the windowpane, as thunder murmured not too far away. Sleep evaded me, as I lay on the bed, eyes open, when I smelt it again, that rotten egg smell, that filled me with dread. Stumbling out of bed, I went to the window, looking out onto the field, and squinting to see if I could see The Isn’t. There was a loud thump below me, looking downwards, I jumped back. Clinging to the base of a swinging tree was the grey-faced man, holding and climbing upwards, his monstrous limbs bent like a daddy long legs. He shot me a smile, his mouth opening with those horrible jagged teeth. I fell hitting the wood flooring and scooting to the wall, where I sat paralyzed. Amongst the hallowing wind, there was a sound of scurrying, he was inching his way closer. A loud boom of thunder was followed by lightning that lit up the sky with light, as it did the grey-faced man came into view in front of my window. I tried to scream but I couldn’t, my throat sealed shut. My window being opened, emitting a sharp squeaking sound as a gust a wind forced its way in, along with that debilitating putrid smell. There he was, his neck extended in my room, drool and rain dripped onto the floors. From his pocket, he took out the trout from earlier. “Good eats.” He said, ripping into the fish’s flesh, chunks of meat scattered onto his clothes and his face. He sucked away at its eyes, popping them into his mouth, licking the dead carcass. Extending his arm, he opened his hand, revealing a palm-full of precious gems, colorful rubies, emeralds, and sapphires that glistened in the dark. “Trade.” He said gurgling. Something clicked inside my head. “No! No! No!” I screamed. “I don’t want to trade with you!” As I said it, the lights in his eyes went out, like a candle being extinguished. He slunk back from the window, retreating into the night. Heaving with tears running down my face, the door of my bedroom was flung open. My Dad went for the light switch, flooding my room in warm yellow light. “Luke, what the hell?” He looked at me, his face contorted in concern. A dead fish lay on the wet floor. Later I pressed my ear against the door as I could hear my father yelling at my Grandma that night as the storm raged on. I only caught bits of it. “You pulled the same shit on me when I was younger.” “How dare you scare him, terrorize him with your bullshit.” “You’ll never see us again. EVER!” The next morning the weather subsided and there seemed to be a relative peace in the house. Sitting at the breakfast table, my eyes went back and forth between my Grandma and Dad like a ping pong ball, trying to glean some indication of what had happened. When my Dad put his breakfast plate in the sink, retreating upstairs, my Grandma whose gaze had been downwards, met my stare, and indicating for us to go outside. I told her what had happened with the grey-faced man near the river and the night before. She made a tutting sound when I mentioned how I gave him the fish. When I was done talking she let out a sigh, “You got lucky my Luke. The Isn’t seems to be more brazen than from what I remember, never seen it come by the house, not even close.” She picked up a wet piece of string on the ground examining it. “I promised your Da I wouldn’t hang the red thread anymore. The Isn’t doesn’t like red.” Towards the tree line, a figure emerged. It was The Isn’t in my Grandma’s likeness. I had become so used to it by now, I didn’t bat an eye. “Can’t we show him?” I said. “I mean if he sees you here, and The Isn’t over there in your form, he’ll have to believe The Isn’t is real, won’t he? “I’m afraid, trying to show him anything now will just make him angrier.” There was a sadness in her eyes, “And just so you know, that’s not my form The Isn’t is using.” I looked to her, confused. “It’s my twin sister, Margret’s form.” She was touching her mutilated right hand as he spoke. I knew that my Grandma had a sister, but not that they were twins. “The Isn’t took her when we were barely thirteen.” A tear slid down her cheek, and she held up her right hand, sticking out her two remaining fingers. “It almost got me as well.”
With most of the issues being due to bad wiring or loose/too tight screws I feel like it is time for a good post-unboxing checklist, to be walked through pre-assembly. Even though I do not have my unit shipped yet, I've seen enough issues and fixes that I can compile this post. If you have any feedback or anything that needs to be added, please let me know and I will amend this post.
So, you now have an partially assembled CR-6 on your desk:
A base with the motherboard and bed.
Follow the steps to ensure everything is in order.
The base - the guts
Ensure you have the voltage switch at the side set correctly.
Flip the unit and open up the cover.
Ensure the motherboard is properly screwed in, with all the screws. Consider actually unscrewing it so there is no metal dust or loose screws under the motherboard, causing shorts.
The wiring should have good insulation and at the end the heat shrink should be properly applied. Check each wire.
On the motherboard the connectors are hot glued in, but check for proper seating and no damage. This can come down to 3mm, like in this post [IMGUR mirror].
Disassemble the power switch. Ensure the live connection is good. Ensure the connectors to the power supply are nice and tight. Close up the unit.
The base - the bed
The bed moves on V-rollers. Two are fixed and should have their screws tight enough not to have play. Don't overtighten because you'Il damage the bearing.
The third wheel of the bed contains an eccentric nut. You can use this to tighten the bed to the slots in the frame. Refer to this post and the video of Just Vlad. Ensure the bed does not have play, but it should not have any resistance either.
Move the bed back and forth, gently. The bed, while moving, should not have resistance anywhere on the track, you should feel no binding. The bed should not wobble either. Try this by applying a little bit of pressure, just like the auto-leveling system would do.
Check the connector that provides power to the bed. 5, Check the connector to the stepper motor that drives the bed. Ensure it is plugged in well. 6, Ensure the belt of the bed is properly tight. You shouldn't be able to play guitar on it but prevent it from having to much play. Be careful, with the belt tighteners it is easy to apply too much pressure!
Ensure the stepper motor is fixed to the frame and the grub screw is tight, refer to this post.
The gantry - pre-assembly
Let's check the gantry now. Disassemble the fan cover and ensure the hotend screws are not loose. The may otherwise interfere with auto bed leveling.
Ensure all the wires on the hot-end are properly insulated, have heat shrink properly applies, and all the connectors are nice and snug.
Re-assemble the fan cover. 4, Now, let's go to the extruder. Loosen the screws a bit, we will tighten them later.
Tighten the nuts at the top of the gantry.
While you're at it you can also install the handle.
Ensure the X-axis stepper is fixed properly to the gantry.
The base revisited
Before assembling the gantry ensure all nuts on the base are fixed.
The gantry - assembly
Put the gantry onto the frame. Put the bolts in but not fully tighten them yet.
Changing between left and right tighten the bolts a little bit each time.
The gantry should now be properly attached to the frame.
Check whether the the X axis is on both sides fairly parallel to the bed. Move it gently down and use calipers. Adjust as necessary (how?).
Mention your firmware version and the batch of Kickstarter (if ordered through Kickstarter).
Take pictures of relevant cabling.
You need at least to have your backer number, and printer serial number. Take pictures and videos. Use simple English. Find the warranty / after-sales card which states the way to contact Creality. It should be [email protected] or [email protected]. Don't forget to mention you ordered though their official campaign on Kickstarter (if applicable) - otherwise they might turn you away to the reseller.
2020.08.18 05:14 Not_very_socialI listened to Mike Keller's preaching so you don't have to.
Have you ever wondered how on earth JRod managed finagle an engagement with the Kellers (aka ANNA DUGGAR's family)? The answer is here in this recap. And because I don't like to read through paragraphs of text to find out the answer to a question, I will TL;DR: Mike Keller is Jill 2.0. He is the male version of Jill, only without the 80's hooker makeup and malnourished children. He is just as batshit crazy as she is, full of recounting stories of harassing--sorry--saving innocent bystanders in public, possessing an utter lack of ability to realize his social faux-pas, and just being a downright, horrible, judgemental, hypocritical person. He and Jill are two peas in a pod; he just doesn't have social media to broadcast it in full. He finds the Rods perfectly normal.. Below you will find ALL CAPS and *italics* to note when his voice goes HIGH pitched or especially crazy sounding, which is quite often. I was only able to stand recapping the worst of the worst. So sit back, grab a beverage of your choice, and take a look at the mind boggling drivel that pings around in Mike Keller's brain. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- It starts out innocent enough: Nurie just finished playing the piano in the corner and get sup to go to her seat as Mike passes her getting up to the pulpit. "Isn't that beautiful how she plays?? We are blessed, so blessed." Awww. He then makes his son David hand out a papers to everyone. All these people are inside during a pandemic. After some bible talk, Mike starts talking about ThE boOk Of MoRmOn. Funny thing is, he says it in a dun-dun-dunnnnn voice, like he's going to talk about something scary. He then begins shit on the Book of Mormon and it's history, calling it a "stunning, devised fable." He says all this with a straight face and no self-awareness: "SUCH A FAIRY TALE". "Stinking false fairy tales." "It's a fairy tale!" Ahh, I see where Nathan gets his repeating words from. WTF, LISTEN TO THIS QUOTE: "Joseph Smith just was a pervert, he committed adultery with over 20 women." LMAOOOOOOOO OK father-in-law of Josh Duggar. In case it's not clear, MK is not spending this sermon talking nice things: he's basically going to shit on everyone and be judgemental in a type of voice I can only describe as Southern accent with a judgey Valley Girl tone. (*Note: This is not against Southerners or people from the Valley, just awful Mike.) Mike on Joseph Smith: "The Mormon church says what, he died as a what? As a Martyr." Bursts into a fit of giggling. "What a JOKE. What a joke. What a religion--they are SO BRAINWASHED. SO BRAINWASHED." The lack of self awareness! On to the Jehovah's Witnesses. Mike talks about the papers he passed around to the congregation to bash the JWs and how WRONG they are with their SILLY beliefs. He solidifies his critique with the following gems: "What a baloney sandwich!" "Why don't you just admit he was WRONG." "What a handsome looking guy" (He said this about Charles Russell, who's picture is on the paper, so I had to include it.) Talking about the JW founder(?) Charles Russell hooking up with the maid in front of his wife: " Well she divorced him. I'm not complaining about." OK FATHER OF ANNA DUGGAR, remember summer 2015? Mike whines about how these "CULTS" are booming: there is a Mormon church and JW in every city! Yes, he used the word CULTS unironically. Mike can't believe that JW sees Baptists as false! Hey JWs, MIKE and the BAPTISTS are the TRUE CHURCH, YOU are the false ones. Now talk about Angels. MIKE suddenly starts SCREECHING so loud the audio buzzes and I actually jump a bit. He is raving about TARTARUS, the lowest part of HELL. "IN-SEC-TOIDSSSSSSSSSS." He hisses this word at least twice, maybe three times when talking about locusts You can tell he's so proud to have learned it. "We can have fun in church!" When is that going to start happening? Now talking about Sodom and Gomorrah turning into ashes. I'm sure this will be a nice story. Sure enough, Mike talks about God using his "little pinky!" to rain a meteor shower of descruction down on them. He then goes on a tangent of Priscilla and her husband, the fabulous David Waller, going to Israel and randomly deciding to go to Sodom and Gomorrah to dig through the ashes. Mike claims they found balls of sulfur, which they gift one to him. This causes Mike to realize that Hell is not just hot, but it stinks. "VEXED" Mike gets VEXED everyone. Mike talks about getting VEXED when he used to work a real job to support his family, because the guys he worked with were a bunch of "drunks, heathens, and pot heads". Poor Mike! Heathens, drunks, and pot heads VEXED him all day long with their "bad language", no wonder he wanted to work in prisons! Don't get him started on the music. Mike can't STAND when music is played in public. When he hears it he thinks: "Ugh, I need to take a bAAAth!"...Mike recommends turning on some good Christian music, take a bAAAth, listen to some Bible verses...These are all great recommendations on how to clear your head from heathen music. You're Welcome. I am so sorry to people of Silver Springs, KY who had to put up with this next part. So Mike decides that God is telling him to go on a date with his wife to this restaurant called Sunnys. The following happened: 1) Mike claims he tipped well (doubtful), 2) He asks the poor waitress if she thinks you can get to heaven by being a good person, and he rudely dumbs down his voice to act like he's her to say "Yes, you can." Ass. 3) He freaking gave her a bunch of tracts. 4) He uses the bathroom for several minutes and is forced to listen to the "hillbilly redneck" music blaring on the speakers. He then proceeds to warble out a sample: "I'll take a bullet for yoooououou." VEXED VEXED VEXED. Mike is vexed! Big sigh; Mike figures he'll move on to mocking what's going on in the news now: protesters and riots. As he's reading a bible verse, he once again randomly starts screeching "RIOTS!!!!!!!!!!!!" I did NOT need to hear your voice octave passing my cat's yowling you old coot! By the way, did you guys know that one of these riot leaders is a MARXIST?? What they believe allows them to riot. Mike says this is SATANIC & EVIL. Oh my God when will this end...Ten minutes left. Mike claims 100 years ago, Jerusalem was a desert with nothing going on and "pathetic." Freaking asshole doesn't even know that Jerusalem was a diverse city with many thriving communities living side by side. By the way, Seventh Day Adventists are SO. BRAINWASHED. (*Valley Girl tone intensifies*) Speaking of brainwashing! Mike has a special treat for you all: "How many of you would like to be brainwashed?" What, again? Mike says he will brainwash you all now, TeeeHeee! His voice gets very high and he's so giddy as he explains how he's going to do it, so close your eyes! So, a man left home jogging, turns left, continues jogging, turns left, continues jogging, turns left, continues jogging, turns left, continues jogging until he reaches home again and sees two men in masks. Who are the masked men? Well, the man's jogging around a baseball diamond and when he hits home, the umpire and catcher have masks on. TeeeeHeeee! He actually asks Nurie what she was thinking about, who had the masks on? Poor girl was so confused she thought he was saying "MASCOT." Is homegirl so sheltered she can't decipher different accents? Is she hard of hearing? What did the story have to do with brainwashing? No one knows because Mike never explains. "BUT THESE PEOPLE ARE SO BRAINWASHED" he belt out. Shifting gears, Mike is talking about going to Daytona to a....Girl's mall? Girl's model? I dont't understand him. Maybe I was too hard on Nurie. Anyways, he claims a really bubbly Mormon girl just comes up to him wanting to talk. Sure, Jan. Mike makes her read a prayer and several verses AT LEAST TEN TIMES. That poor child. But the point is, after the 12th time, she realizes she's saved through Jesus! And she gets so excited when she realizes it! As Mike explains, "She was so satanically brainwashed," but luckily he was there to help. Mike brings up Satan and teh IlLuMiNaTi. Oh bug off. Oh no, Mike is kinda sad because Nathan is a better "soul winner" than him. Maybe not in prison, but definitely what he calls "the free world." He really really calls the secular world the free world, and I bet he has no idea how true that is. Anyways, years ago, Nathan and David BEGGED Mike to take them soul winning with him. Please daddy they begged! So kindly Mike decides to take them to the best soul winning place there is--McDonalds. Inside, Nathan harasses some pour dude who must have been lonely or not in a good place because they talk for 30 minutes with Nathan leading him to Jesus. According to Mike, this guy showed up to Bible study the next day, and still comes years later. Thankfully, Mike is not as good as Nathan is to harassing people, BUT he did win one soul: another restaurant emoloyee. Recently at a Cracker Barrel, Mike got to "witnessing" the unable-to-leave door greeter. His voice gets SO high as he squeals: "We didn't just go to a wedding, WE WENT ON A MISSION TRIP! He pumps his arms up and down like someone told a kid they were going to Disney World. SPEAKING OF THE ROYAL WEDDING: Everyone, JRod was actually telling THE TRUTH. Mike starts gushing about the wedding, and says he doesn't think he's EVER seen such a beautiful dress. So he really did love Nuries puffed sleeves. I guess after his hussy daughter refused to wear any for her wedding earlier in the year, Mike was very appreciative. He weirdly mentions how nice it was ironed and cost a fortune to dry clean, but it was worth it. His voice gets all dreamy as he talks about the "*perfect* wedding, *perfect* dress, *perfect* first kiss", then he literally "ahhhhhhhhs". He talks about how blessed they are to have Nurie in the family. He ends it by giving the most obnoxious prayer, and with that, I'm off to find some wine and blast heathen music to help cleanse my brain.
Hello all. So I took delivery a few weeks back on a 2020 Mustang GT Premium with a few added options. Thought I would write down a few thoughts on the whole process / my thoughts on the car itself. Background Starting in March, I knew I wanted to replace my current car (a 2017 Lincoln MKC) with another Mustang. I had a 2012 V6 that I really enjoyed. Originally, I was going to order / locate a 2020 Ecoboost Premium. I located one but the dealer trade fell through. After doing a little research, I figured with the way residual values seem to work for this car the GT would actually end up being cheaper to own for 4-5 years. For some other strange reason, the GT was actually significantly cheaper for me to insure. The Order: I went to my dealer with a general idea of what I wanted to order. I was stuck between Kona blue with a white stripe and grabber lime without a stripe. I added the 10 speed automatic and and Bang and Olufsen stereo. The stereo was a must have for me. I tried the basic stereo and it didn't have enough power in my opinion. I was on the fence regarding the digital dash package and all the things it came with. I ended up not going for it. I was undecided on the color at the time of order, so the dealer actually ended up ordering both cars for me. I gave them a $500 deposit. The timeline was as follows:
May 25th - Deposit Given
June 23rd - VIN generated
July 1st - Car enters production
July 10th - Ford actually lost the car
July 17th - Car was delivered to dealer
About Ford losing the car: So the car never got scanned as it left Detroit, so they were not sure what truck / train it was loaded onto. Somehow it ended up at the correct dealer. I went in the evening of the delivery date after hours to take a look at the car. (https://imgur.com/a/U5OhoNu). The car was pretty dusty but I didn't notice any imperfections. I went in the next day to finalize everything. The car was bought Ford A/X/Z plan so the price is set and cannot be negotiated. The dealer did try to play some games claiming a price increase between the date of order and delivery, but backed down after I threatened to leave. After about an hour, I left with the car unwashed and unprepared. All I had them do was remove the window stickers. My logic was that Kona is such a dark color, I knew their wash would swirl it terribly. As soon as I got it home, I washed it myself with my foam cannon (https://imgur.com/a/0B4rxtx). Since bringing it home, I have put about 1000 miles on the car and have a pretty good grasp of how I feel. Exterior: First off, the paint color is gorgeous. Kona blue is a color I am happy I went with. It does seem to get dirty pretty easily, but a quick foam and rinse seems to fix it right up. The Pirelli tires (P Zero Nero) that it came with get a lot of flak online, but I do not have any issues with them. They have never lost grip or felt squirrelly, even in extreme rain. The S550 is a much improved design than the S197 in my opinion. To me, the car is much sleeker than the S197. I really like the look of the daytime running lights and the car looks a lot more aggressive this generation. I am happy that all GTs now have quad exhaust. The stripes seem to be of high quality. They are straight and don't have any noticeable bubbles. I really like the look of the stock wheels. (https://imgur.com/a/ePDy9W0). Interior: (https://imgur.com/a/0xvaD3g) The interior on this generation is a solid improvement compared to my 2012. You get a lot less plastic and much more soft touch. The toggle switches are cool, Sync 3 is very nice, and the gauges are clear. It is a ton of fun to mess with the colors for ambient lighting and MyColor. I like the screen in the middle, it tells you enough without sacrificing the retro look this car is going for. The seats are very comfortable and are heated / cooled. The leather quality is average for a Ford. The upgraded B&O stereo has a ton of bass (might be the giant sub in the trunk) and is well worth the $900 it costs. You do lose a bit of trunk space (https://imgur.com/a/AcCzKAh), but I think it is a worthy sacrifice. Visibility is good. This car is not hard to see out of and I never feel uncomfortable driving it. The suspension is actually a lot softer than I expected. It is firm enough where I don't feel like a boat captain, but it also isn't so hard that my ripe old age back (23) starts to hurt as it did sometimes in the 2012. My only real complaint is that the center where the shifter / cupholders are located is hard plastic. At 45k, this should be soft touch like the doors. The backseat is also very plastic. The walls and roof are all hard plastic back there. Definitely feels cheap, but I can see why they did it. I don’t plan to ever have anybody sit back there. Overall, interior is a huge upgrade from 2012. It is a lot quieter when you want it to be and is a much nicer place to be. Edit: I almost forgot about another reminder of the interior quality. All of the stitching on the dash isn’t real. It’s molded into the vinyl. I’ve attached a picture (not mine) https://imgur.com/a/C7eulGr Tech: I didn't option any of the driver assistance things. I think for 1k you get lane keep, adaptive cruise, automatic emergency breaking, auto high beams, and rain sense wipers. Those are features I do not really value. The stereo and built in infotainment is nice and seems pretty responsive. I really like the ambient lighting and "My Color" gauges where you can customize the color of everything. The selectable drive modes and steering feels are nice. I can tell a difference between the modes and steering feels. I usually leave the steering in sport and the mode in sport +. It seems to be the best balance. The FordPass app is really a game changer. (https://m.imgur.com/a/b8cYrnG) It is 100% free and you can start, stop, track, lock, and unlock the car from your phone. It also tells you things like tire pressure, gas in the tank, and oil life. I believe GM charges for this and I do not think it is available on FCA cars. I was told FordPass was standard even on the 25k base Ecoboost which is really impressive. My only real complaint with the tech, is that you cannot view the song you are playing in the gauges, you have to look over at the center screen. This was something my Lincoln did that I liked. Power and Handling: (https://imgur.com/a/s5lgCVT) I don't have a ton to say on this other than what others have said. The Coyote 5.0 is a wonderful engine. Paired with the A10 transmission, it is kind of always what you want it to be. In normal mode, it is a quiet cruiser that shifts smoothly and gets really good gas mileage (I have been averaging 22-24 MPG). When you drop it into sport and floor it on an on ramp, you hit illegal speeds very quickly. It really throws you back. The track apps are nice, but I do not see myself using them a ton since this is a daily driver. Hitting the start button and hearing a cold start and feeling the rumble never gets old. It is refreshing to have a car put a smile on your face whenever you hit the gas. The only issue is this engine puts out a ton of heat. If you drive it at all, the hood and prop rod are way too hot to touch. I do kind of wish they used struts rather than a prop rod. Quality Issues: Thus far, I have had three issues I have had to fix on the car. First, there was a small cloth wire or something sticking out where the A pillar meets the dashboard. I used a plastic tool for taking phones apart to stuff it back under the dash. Next, there was a slight creak that developed. The dashboard was rubbing against the speedometer . I used a tool and stuffed some electric tape wrapped around itself and that seems to have stopped the squeak for the last week and a half. The last issue was two pieces of glass (drivers window and rear window) had some scuff marks. I used a polish and they came right off. Other than the squeak, nothing too serious has happened. Sometimes, CarPlay doesn't connect and won't connect unless I turn the car off and turn it back on. I am not sure if this is the car or my phone. This car definitely feels more solid than my 2012 did and doesn't seem to creak at all. Overall Impressions: I am happy with the value at 45k. The speed and sound are amazing. It never ceases to put a smile on my face when I hit the gas. Other than the plastic center, interior quality is nice. It certainly isn't a luxury car, but I am happy with the. The paint color is great and has a ton of metallic in it. It's annoying to keep clean, but when it is clean it looks great. MPG has been much higher than expected. I am getting the advertised 25 - 27 mpg on the freeway as long as I drive conservatively. Even when I am being obnoxious, it never gets below the teens. The interior is certainly louder than my Lincoln, but that is expected. It is a pleasant place to be and the features included in the Premium package are well worth the cost of admission. I sat in a non premium package car, and there was a ton more plastic. I would honestly probably take an Ecoboost Premium over the basic GT. (Don't crucify me, this is a daily driver so I need some comfort) The rumble coming from under the hood seems to make every other shortcoming the car has go away. When you consider that you are getting 460 HP with a 0-60 under 4 seconds, from 36 - 50k, it really is a great value as long as you have your expectations in check. I looked at the Mustang and Challenger mostly. This definitely feels sportier and seems to have included more options for the money. In my opinion, the Camaro is not a very attractive car and I did not care for the interior / visibility of it. Price was 45k. After my discount and incentives, I paid right around 37k. At that price, this is a bargain for what you get. If you have any more questions or want pictures of anything else, please feel free to ask!
2020.08.15 23:00 TrofuldsAn unnecessarily long analysis as to why I think Ride or Die is the best written book in Pixelberry's library
Okay, I want to start this by saying that while Endless Summer is my favorite book due to emotional attachment, I still think that Ride or Die comfortably surpasses it and every other Choices story when it comes to writing quality. I've been consuming some truly kino media like Steins;Gate, The Last of Us Part II and Better Call Saul in the past few months but seeing that the tumblr side of the fandom was having a ROD Appreciation Week made me have the book constantly wrestling for time in my mind along all those other things that I greatly enjoyed (Obviously, I'm not trying to imply this is anywhere near the same level of quality as these other pieces, cause that'd just be stupid) but yeah, I've been wanting to talk in depth about why I hold Ride or Die in such high regard for a long time now, so this post is for me, for anyone else that might be big fans of the book or even for people that didn't like it and don't understand why it's a fan favorite. It's also my late, not proofread contribution to the appreciation week since I can't really draw for shit. PREMISE AND THEMES Quick summary, it’s a story about growing up and finding oneself that focuses on an 18 year old girl in her last weeks of high school that joins a criminal crew without even realizing it due to her sheltered life making her feel like she missed out on her teenage years for the past 5 years since, after her mother’s death, her dad became incredibly protective of her. As she grows attached to the crew she gets deeply immersed in their world until she realizes what the pursue of freedom, fast cars and bad boys/girls truly entails. Of course, you all know that. So, themes. Most Choices stories don’t have any big, noticeable theme that encompasses the entire story they’re trying to tell, which is completely fine since you can still write a good, compelling story without it (Unless you’re David Benioff). Of course, while not necessary, overarching themes elevate a story a lot more in my eyes if executed properly and I feel like Ride or Die excels at it. And what are these themes? Well, obviously, it’s up to every individual’s interpretation but to me the three biggest stand outs are freedom, obviously; the choice between someone’s own past and future; and how the typical Bad Boy Romance is not always the cheesy, idealized life most of us are used to. I’ll explain how the story presents these themes in the following segments. ELLIE WHEELER, aka THE MC I’ve raved about her at almost every chance I get because I feel like I can make a pretty compelling argument as to why she’s the best MC and one of the best characters PB’s ever written, but it’s about time I finally sat down to properly explain this stance. I might refer to her as Ellie at times instead of MC since I just don’t like having an essay this big and introspective and just referring to her as MC, even if I didn’t actually keep her default name myself. So, let’s start from what most of the ROD MC masterrace knows about, she’s different from 95% of the MCs. She has a clear goal, a clear personality and, one of the most rare traits in MCs, her dad’s an actual character and he has an actual relationship with her. She’s also far from perfect, she’s an incredibly smart young woman that lacks “street” knowledge and as she gets in deeper and deeper with the MPC, her previous and new relationships suffer because of it, because she doesn’t know how to juggle both sides of her life. The hardships Ellie has to face are both products of the environment she lives in and a product of her mistakes, which acts as a nice balance so that she doesn’t come of as a bumbling idiot that fucks up everything for everyone and an overly perfect protagonist who’s only flaw is that the world just plots against her so that there can be a story to tell. Her goal is a pretty simple one, she wants to go to Langston university, her dream school. The thing that stands out to me is how she never betrays her dream and it’s always present in the back of her mind, well, technically you can choose to skip out on all of her classes but that always seemed really out of character to me, so I’m not really taking that into account, since she expresses that she loves to learn and she sees it as a challenge to be better than herself from yesterday. She manages to involve Logan into her school life so she isn’t fully distracted from her studies and even when she’s living on the Gramercy Garage, she still finds time to study for her finals. Even when everything goes to shit and she starts losing sight of who she is, Logan, Colt and Mona know that being a criminal is not the life she’s meant to live and it isn’t until after prom that she realizes who she really is. There’s so many choices throughout the story that, while ultimately not relevant to the outcome, I feel can add a lot of character to her if you’re willing to “headcanon” a bit, so minor things such as picking the color of her car due to it being the same as Logan’s or the one Colt or Mona suggested, choosing to listen to rap music as she’s driving the MPC around since it can be seen as a rebellious sort of music that her dad probably wouldn’t have approved of, treating Brent’s party invitation as something of no importance to her, getting a tattoo… wait this one’s supposed to be big, why does no one acknowledge it dammit? Then there’s also some bigger choices such as her being able to tell Riya that she’s most excited about being able to leave LA on the first chapter or being able to choose to stay with Logan and help him fight Salazar, choosing to focus on her studies even when living with the MPC, and so on. Now, how is she tied to the themes I mentioned above? Well, it’s clear that her desire for freedom and independence is what initially leads her to want to be a part of the MPC’s life, when Kaneko brought her to the garage for the first time she didn’t quite see them as criminals, but as people that lived as they wanted and were still, well, humans. She’s constantly seeking her own freedom from her dad’s overbearing presence and from her own boring life and she achieves it twice, one is the fake freedom she got when she ran away after her dad found out about her involvement with the MPC and the second one is what I like to think of as her true freedom. The definition of true freedom is tied to the second theme I mentioned, the choice between past and future, after the Brotherhood attacks her and her LI after prom she realizes that she can no longer try to keep on living both lives, the nerdy valedictorian girl and the criminal that gets a thrill by being behind the wheel, the inability to choose between one and the other is what initially landed her into that mess and it’s only by finally choosing that she’s able to get herself and everyone else from the MPC out. It’s a very unique way of showing a character being strong, she got herself out of the mess she herself helped cause and she did it without the conventional strengths of MCs such as being a warrior queen, a part of an alien entity that transcends time or a literal vampire. Ultimately, she chose to embrace her future (And her past, in a roundabout way), her long time dream, which meant letting go of the life and people that once made her feel so free and alive and by doing so, she got the freedom she desired so much while also finding who she truly was and what she valued in life. That’s also tied to the third main theme I mentioned, in the end she couldn’t keep on living an idealized version of the bad boy romance where you get to keep a good life out of living on the wrong side of the law and while I could definitely go more in depth about how she embodies this theme, I’ll do that when I talk about other characters, since I’ve already talked about about Ellie a lot. LOGAN The cover boy, the boy with the car, the “bad boy”, the mandatory “good boi” LI, the only Love Interest that has managed to rival Quinn Kelly in terms of how much I love them. I feel like the love for all 3 LIs is mostly evenly distributed on this sub but I’ve definitely seen some people say that Logan is kinda boring compared to Colt and Mona and honestly, that just couldn’t be further from the truth in my mind. Prepare for another long ass analysis. Being a fan of the anime/manga series Attack on Titan has made me gain a great, great appreciation for story recontextualization and that narrative element is exactly what Logan brings to the story at the end of Chapter 10 and boy, did Luke and the team knock that shit out of the park. ROD Ch. 10 is notorious for being the chapter that officially turned the book from an initially hated book that people were slowly warming up to, to a current fan favorite as far as online communities are concerned, seriously, you can look up the discussion for that chapter in the search bar and the first comment you’ll see if someone taking back everything negative they said about the book and then it’s just constant praising for the next 6 weeks. Why did all of that happen? Because of how much starts making sense or becoming clearer because of the reveal that Logan initially started dating (?) MC because he was trying to get whatever intel her dad had on them from her, seriously, everything becomes so clear after the end of the chapter, everything starts falling into place like a carefully crafted Lego build, be it for the stories’ themes or for characterization of characters like Colt, Mona, Kaneko, Jason and Logan himself. Let’s focus on Logan for now though. A couple of chapters in, as we start learning more about his life, we can see that Logan is someone that’s never truly had someone in his life that could show him true human love and bonds, the closest he has to that prior to Ellie is his “cousin” Vaughn. Initially, it seems like a weak attempt at making the titular bad boy seem like a layered character, specially since he seemingly just fell for a random girl that literally stumbled upon him on a high school parking lot, but in reality the reason his fake interest in Ellie started to become reality was exactly because of the lack of proper, meaningful connections, which we couldn’t have known until after Colt reveals the truth. As we know, Logan always had the mentality that, no matter how good a crew might be, he should always be ready to bail when the heat was too much, that’s a philosophy that he adopted and he knows that any criminal that’s as good as him will share the same sentiment, which we get to see as being the case when the MPC immediately disbands after Kaneko’s death but Ellie isn’t a hardened, professional criminal, she’s a girl that, while certainly enamored by the allure of their life, still sees them as people, not as mere means to an end that are just fun to hang out with, which is why she doesn’t run away after the escape from the mall or the encounter with Salazar’s crew at the drive-in cinema, that’s not something Logan thinks people are capable of, why would such a saint of a girl not get away from them after things like that? That’s when Logan’s guilt enters the scene and he tries to undo what he now considers to have been a great mistake since he’s slowly catching real feelings for the girl that was just supposed to spill all of Detective Wheeler’s info and leave them as soon as she realized how dangerous their life was, but how is he supposed to do that when doing so would mean losing this person that’s so incredibly unique in his world? We see how his guilt starts weighing on him more and more as the story progresses, until he almost does something very stupid by almost revealing the truth right before the stadium job so he probably wouldn’t have lasted much after that but, for better or worse, Colt was the one that revealed everything and once again Logan turns Ellie’s world upside down. For the rest of the book, he does everything in his power to show her that, while he was lying in the beginning, he actually did come to care for her a lot, even if his actions might’ve pushed her into the arms of Colt or Mona, or at least acted as the final push. Regardless of that, after the MPC disbanded there was only one person I could see appearing on Riya’s doorstep when I played through ROD during release and that was Logan, because it just made all the sense in the world in my mind. Backtracking a bit, we know from his two diamond scenes on the early chapters that Logan dropped out of high school but he always liked to learn about random stuff, hence him reading while on the road, and that he always toyed with the idea of going back (He also says that he’d probably be graduating that year if he hadn’t dropped out, which tells us that he’s the youngest of the 3 LIs, which is a neat detail), so I always saw that as him showing up not just for Ellie’s sake but also for himself in a way, since it’d be a good way to live out the life he never had, even if just for a few hours. Speaking of prom night, I absolutely adore how when he tells Ellie he loves her, she can reply with “Logan… no you don’t.” since it’s only natural she wouldn’t believe him 100% since not only did they get together through a web of lies spun by him and Kaneko, but because as far as she knows, Logan can’t possibly know what real love feels like. Fast forward to the final chapter and it’s time for the MPC to go their own ways, for real this time to avoid getting entangled with the FBI and, even if Logan wasn’t your actual LI he still gets to show not that he’s completely accepting of the fact that he isn’t the one Ellie loves, and on both cases he shows that he also grew to truly love her by deciding to not be a part of her life any more, because it just isn’t feasible for her to pursue her dreams while also being involved with potential suspects on the FBI watch list, so he chooses her future over his because he can’t and he won’t let her risk her future for something as small as a space rock lucky enough to burn up in her atmosphere for a moment and with that, a request for Troublemaker to give ‘em hell and a brief but tense showdown with Detective Wheeler, he speeds off into the night. COLT KANEKO The actual leather wearing bad boy of the story that sauntered his way into the hearts of many fans, both as a character and a love interest, he’s sarcastic, he’s funny, he’s soft only with the MC and he’s also a multilayered character, how could he not be liked? I want to preface this section by saying that, just like with really popular LIs such as Jake Mackenzie, Damien Nazario or Ethan Ramsey, I could never bring myself to like Colt in a romantic way, even though I can certainly see the appeal of their route but even then, just like the aforementioned gentlemen, he’s still one of my favorite characters of the series regardless of that, simply because of how much he brings to the table. So without further ado, let’s get started with Mr. “Christ, who caaares?” Kaneko’s unnecessarily long essay. The thing I love about him the most is how the most important aspect of his character are his personal relationships. Right off the bat we can see that Colt has a bone to pick with Logan due to their relationship with Kaneko, he’s always butting heads with Logan and Kaneko at the beginning because he resents both, the latter for sending him away to college and not being willing to let him in on the family business and the former for, in his eyes, being the son Kaneko always wanted, not knowing that the only reason his dad kept him away from the business and seemingly replaced him with Logan was because if Jason actually harmed the MPC he could live with the loss of Logan on his conscience, but not Colt’s. As time goes on Colt finds himself slowly warming up to Ellie, even if he initially just thinks of her as one of his dad’s mistakes waiting to blow up in their faces, and even if he does relentlessly teases/annoys her it’s very obvious that he can connect with her because of her complicated relationship with her dad and she can understand him, they both love their dads immensely but they severely disagree on the view they have of their respective child. And against Colt’s predictions, Ellie proves herself as a valuable asset to the crew (Not knowing until later on just how deep that rang true) and he eventually starts falling for her as well, which is what sets the Chapter 10 plot twist in motion. After the MPC manages to steal the super cars for the Brotherhood, Kaneko opens up to the idea of letting Colt into the business, since it’s clear he won’t just pack up and leave for college anymore, especially after Kaneko is shot and threatened by the Brotherhood and he has to rely on Colt’s plan of kidnapping one of their members and at some point he reveals the truth about their current situation to his son, where Colt finds out about the truth behind Logan and Ellie but it isn’t until after the stadium heist that he makes shit hit the fan by starting a fight with Logan and spilling his secret. That always seemed to me that it came from a place that’s equal parts being mad at Logan for using Ellie like that but also him seeing it as a petty opportunity to sow discord between them, which is why she later has the choice to unload on Colt for deliberately keeping the truth to himself until the right moment. This also marks the moment where the somewhat toxic, somewhat supportive, somewhat wholesome and entirely complicated romantic relationship between them can start to flourish, since Ellie obviously doesn’t see Logan in the exact same way she did 24 hours before and depending on the player, she could’ve actually started to develop her relationship with Colt (Or Mona) prior to the reveal. Something I haven’t seen being mentioned about Colt’s arc is how him being misjudged by both Ellie and Kaneko plays a huge role in it. After Ellie leaves the MPC, he decides to put the rest of his plan in motion, luring The Brotherhood into a illegal casino’s vault using the member they kidnapped and kill them via toxic gas. Toby completely disagrees with their actions and decides to recruit Ellie to help him stop the crew from crossing a line that they seemingly haven’t crossed yet, yes they’re criminals but much like Ellie’s initial impression of them, they’re not psychos and much less murderers, they’re people; so she sets out to stop them with the help of Toby and a Logan that’s desperate for atonement but her biggest mistake was assuming that Colt isn’t the kind of person that can kill another person if it means protecting those he cares about. This is where it gets incredibly interesting and compelling, since not only does her misjudge of character ruin Colt’s entire plan but there’s also the possibility that she had been working for Jason and the Brotherhood the whole time, so in some cases they might’ve actually escaped the trap directly because of her and not indirectly and it doesn’t stop there, since as a result the MPC lose their entire advantage and are once again being targeted by The Brotherhood and that directly leads to not only another huge reveal from Kaneko’s part but also his death, him sacrificing himself so that the crew could escape as he let’s Colt know that he wishes for him to just let go of this life and do something better for himself. Before the rest of the MPC reunites at Gramercy Park, Colt tells Ellie about how he’ll kill them all, he’ll rebuild the garage and kill them all before finally breaking down on her arms as his loss catches up to him, right before the Mercy Park Crew splits up once again. In the end, the two people Colt cared about the most failed at truly understanding him, his dad kept him at an arm’s length for a long time, missing out on time with his son because he never considered the fact that what he wanted for Colt was not what he wanted for himself, despite of all the risks it might entail, and Ellie played a part in Kaneko’s death by not realizing that Colt would be willing to cross such a fucked up line if it meant protecting the people and legacy he cared about so much. Those two factors play a huge role in the rest of the book since they’re the reasons why Colt is pushed dangerously close to a downward spiral that will most definitely only bring him more pain at the end of the book. After Jason is dealt with, he laments the fact that he and Ellie met under such circumstances and not in a classroom where they could annoy each other and become friends and/or significant others but he doesn’t lament his current situation, he’s dead set on becoming the king of LA, on carrying on his father’s legacy, now more than ever. I’d argue Colt Kaneko is the biggest cautionary tale in this book about the dangers of the often glorified life of the bad boys and fast cars and how it can consume you, he was very special to Ellie and Kaneko but they didn’t fully understand who he was, how he was shaped by his ideal future and they couldn’t see how the most important thing for him was his past, his legacy and as a result, he’s alone against a dangerous world, but that’s a danger that he very much welcomes. If any of you have done Colt’s romance route and feel like I missed out on anything, do let me know in the comments, I feel like my appreciation for him only grew more as I wrote his section. MONA The bad girl, the loner, what even is her real name? I’m also going to dedicate an analysis to her but I also want to direct you to a post from a few months ago by user u/elbenji who has reviewed ROD from a WLW perspective that I think you should also check out if you’ve got the time. Anyway, Mona’s turn. So, who’s Mona? Well, she’s kind of the Drake Walker of the book, which is a role that you don’t usually see being filled by a female LI. She doesn’t seem to like anyone, she’s pessimistic, she rarely misses the chance to mock people, she’s damn good at her job and she’s loyal to no one but herself, to some she might actually be the worse person of the 3 LIs during the early chapters but as everything else in this book, the layers to her start to show the more the story advances. She shares Logan’s worldview of everyone only being out for themselves but unlike Logan, she knows that not everyone is necessarily like that but in her eyes those people are in for a rude awakening from the world at some point for being dumb enough to think that they can count on someone else and that’s why she’s borderline condescending towards Ellie when the topic of interpersonal relationships comes up between them. If Colt is shaped by his future, Mona is shaped by her past. Once upon a time she used to be little Miss Perfect like Ellie, honor roll, on the path to valedictorian, the whole thing, until she met a girl that she fell in love with, a criminal that made her enjoy life to its fullest and ended up becoming her whole world until one day they got caught and were taken to interrogation separately where Mona, fully trusting of her partner, lied about their involvement but was still arrested because her girlfriend ended up giving her up in exchange of freedom. That event shaped Mona’s entire philosophy, when it came down to it, people would always put themselves above everyone else and after Kaneko gave her back her freedom that’s the only code she stuck by, her own personal freedom and survival became the most important thing in Mona’s life, even when the man that saved her was in danger she considered multiple times to just leave the MPC to their luck. That is, until she met Ellie Wheeler. Obviously, in typical Pixelberry fashion, Mona doesn’t have as much screen time as her male counterparts but what she lacks in screen time she more than makes up in both narrative and thematic relevancy. As mentioned previously, Mona’s always reminding Ellie how out of her depth she is and treating her like a dumb girl that doesn’t know what she’s doing (Which, to a certain extent, is true) but when shit goes south after the stadium heist it turns out that she’s the only LI that never actually played with Ellie’s feelings and was always straight (Heh) with her, it’s things like this that I love immensely about ROD, the 3 love interests have so many layers to them, they do good and bad things and they feel like actual people that exist in this fictional Los Angeles, their actions are a product of what’s established as their characters, not just as stuff that happens because the plot needs it to. Back on track, just like with Colt, this is the point where Ellie and Mona’s relationship really takes off if the player chooses to and unlike Colt, her going after Ellie feels like it comes off from a place of actual concern since she understands what she’s going through, regardless of whether their relationship is platonic or not at that point, she still sees a girl that feels like she’s got no one left that she can trust in, so she takes it upon herself to be there for her, slowly shedding her walls that she’s put up for so long, probably without even realizing it. After the failed job at the casino, Mona once again contemplates leaving the MPC in the middle of the shit storm but Ellie manages to get her to help since she owes Kaneko that much at the very least, only for her to find out a few minutes later that Kaneko knew The Brotherhood were corrupt cops from the beginning and never confided in them with that information and, in another cruel twist of fate, Kaneko ends up sacrificing himself so that Ellie, Logan, Colt and Mona could run away, once again, giving Mona her freedom. As the MPC discuss their course of action after that, she breaks and let’s out what’s probably my favorite quote in Choices: ”You wanted freedom? The fast cars, the bad boy, that whole life? This is it… and it’s not for you. Go home, for everyone’s sake.”, in that moment she let’s the entire pressure of the situation get to her and unleashes on Ellie, the main reason why they’re all in that whole mess. It’s an incredibly cathartic quote that perfectly encapsulates what ROD is all about, the criminal life is not something one can just juggle as if it were a part time job that’s there for the thrills, it can only lead to a life that most people, if presented with the choice, would never want for themselves. When I read that for the first time I completely forgot that I was just reading a story on a Visual Novel app where you’d never expect to find writing of such quality. I can perfectly feel Mona’s anguish and anger in that quote, the whole weight of the events of the book finally come crashing down on us after we read those words and it’s just such a great feeling that I’ll never stop praising. Let’s get to prom night though, much like Mona going after Ellie on Chapter 11, I feel like her showing up for her prom is still really fitting and the diamond scene that follows after is arguably the best wlw dirty thirty in the app, the dialogue during it is just top tier to be honest. But even better than it to me is the scene after that, where she decides to join The Brotherhood if it means Ellie gets to run away from them since they’re obviously looking to tie up lose ends, it is especially hard hitting if she’s your LI but the version with Colt or Logan is still amazing and I especially love how she uses the hot wiring skills Mona taught her to run away. After the Mercy Park Crew’s last ride together, Mona ends up taking a bullet for the girl that reminded her so much of herself and as Ellie drives her to the hospital she talks about how hard she’s going to be to forget, before reaching the hospital and walking herself inside, knowing that she’d be imprisoned once again by the end of the day. I’ve seen a fair share of people that were unhappy with Mona having to deal with such harsh consequences but I personally love, lover the end of her route since Mona’s always been about self preservation and only being there for herself but meeting Ellie gets her to slip, she starts caring for her and in the end chooses to give up on her freedom if it means Ellie gets to walk away with hers, in a way being the complete opposite of what her ex-girlfriend was to her all those years ago (The dramatic irony can be turned to 11 if you choose the options that show her slowly adopting Mona’s philosophy during the final chapters, so she can slowly become more cynical as Mona slowly sheds hers). In the end, Mona might not be free but she’s still on her element, she’ll be on a place where she’d have to count only on herself and while she’ll definitely have to face some time for her crimes, I’m pretty sure she’d thrive in prison. End of Part 1 Okay, I initially wanted to talk about the supporting characters as well but this shit is truly living up to its title at almost 5K words, that’s already a decently sized one shot, so I’ll stop here since I still want to post it close to the appreciation week, though I might make some edits here and there as I reread it later on but I'm too lazy to do that right now. If I see there’s a good reception for a stupidly long post like I’ll probably get to work on the second part where I talk about Kaneko, Jason, Detective Wheeler, Toby, Ximena and Riya and Darius, as well as maybe analysis for other books that I hold in really high regard such as the Endless Summer trilogy, Open Heart or It Lives Beneath. If you actually made it all the way here, I just want to thank you for taking the time of your day for reading my semi-coherent thoughts and definitely let me know what you think, if you agree, if you disagree, if you think I should go outside, etc. Thanks for your attention.
2020.08.15 18:25 chrisfisher25How my girlfriend broke up with me
On july 14th 2020 i meet rene on badoo app. At 12:13pm it went good and fast i manged to get her number. The same day at 2:35pm we were texting alot she told me she was at her grandmother cottage that day. she promies she would come see me tomorrow on july 15th she was luckly close to me that day. She was only 50mins away she got here at 1pm. We watched movies and cuddled and hugged and kissed iv notice she was on her phone abit. And had people texting her on snap she told me she made a group chat on snapchat that said S.L.U.T something. And it was concering to me i asked her why did she call it that she told me the chat room is all talk about boys and dirty stuff. I tryied my best to trust her it was a good time spending with her she was shy. I remembered we keep looking back at one another and we both kept smiling and saying yes when we catch each other looking. I felt that i must have met the love of my life cause no girl ever drove this far like she did that met so much to me it made me feel special inside. Before she left she made a plan to come see me again for saturday july 17th. we went to the room and she became very emotional she started to cry and shutdown. And would not tell me i took my time and told her whats wrong and eventually she told me she felt that she was not good enough for me. She told me she viewed herself in a bad way that she thinks she ugly and fat she told me that her father is a abusive alcoholic and dose not work and drinks alot and sleeps alot. That he dose not drive that aswell her mother and her hole family body shames her and there not self awere what they do. I find that odd and not true how could someone bodyshame someone else and not be awere of what they did iv told her with a sincere heart that she was beautiful. And told her shes beautiful just the way you are she rejected what i say it was odd i could not call her beautiful sexy or cute or say anything possitve about her body or the way she looked. She made promies she wont leave me aswell she wants to be with me it was practically official that we were boyfriend and girlfriend. I did my best to emotionally suport her after awhile we cuddled in bed had a good time when she was ready to leave rene on july 15th. left to go home at 5:08pm she told me she would let me know if she gets home she automatically tells me what shes doing if shes hangingout with her friends or not or if she driving or not. And let me know if shes home or not. She works usaly 2xs a week not that long of a shift. She put in so much effert that she texted me so much aswell called me and i was able to call her. She would even text me every chance she had at work even tho she had not breaks. when it came to a 4 hour shift she told me working there sucked she told me she worked there for 4 years. And they would not let her do more hours she told me. She was upset and said she wanted to quit her job. She called me to let me know we kept reinsuring one another that we loved eachother and made promies to aswell. Rene came here on july 17th she left her place at 7:04pm. She arrived here at 9:05pm. My birthday was coming up rene knows this cause i told her we watched movies and cuddled and kissed had a fun time. We went to bed late we cuddled as we fell asleep as usal. Shes on her phone looking on snapchat she had a werd chat room called S.L.U.T something. Shes been acting werd with her phone not letting me see who shes texting. Her contact info langue was set in japanes so no one would know what number. it was werd and done on perpose. I did not say anything cause iv been trying to trust her the next moring july 18th. Me and rene did not do much we just cuddled while watching tv. She drove me to tim hortons aswell latter in the day we wanted to order food she order from uber eats we had pizza pizza. Were we watched comdey horror movies we would kiss and cuddle. And say we loved each other we went to bed and she was on her phone alot. Not really allowing me to see what she was doing it was werd. Like she was hidding something she gets texts from her friends and family and people i dont know. Every time she was here and she would send a pic on snap of my apartment as proof. But why cant she do that with me. She allways listens to the japanese band she was obess with them that it became not normal. She on tic tok and other apps to shes glued to her phone. And iv notice she brings her cellphone into the washroom. And shes in there for a long time that a few times when she was here i had to knoc on the door to see if shes ok. This is odd like i swear shes texting someone when shes in there. July 19th we both got up we had a chill day relaxing watching movies cuddling kissing her. Being on her cellphone alot texting people on sanpchat hidding what shes doing. It was super werd and not normal for the rest of the day. When it was night time we went to bed and planed to meet her grandmother the next day. She drove me to her grandmothers place on july 20th we stoped at walmart in Strathroy ontario. Rene needed to get a bathing suite. She told me it cost alot so we hoped back in the car and drove to her grandmothers place. The ride was 1 hour and 30mins were i met her sister there and her mother and her some guy there. First we went to see the anaimals there horses cats dogs chickens and such it was good. Iv notice he kept getting renes attention and rene would go off and spend time with him. Rene made a remark to me saying hes very competitive and i got this werd feeling like this is not right at all. He was constantly telling her to come here getting her distracted. Rene and i went down stairs with her sister they both are a fan of this japness band. But the werd part she became so excited to the point she closed her legs tightly and she used her hands and grabed her private parts and she moaned like she just orgazmed. After that she put a pillow covering her private parts it made me felt unloved. I wished she had the same feelings for me like she did for them. Shes crazy fan for them her mother offered to buy dinner we had poutine it was good. Me rene and her sister and the guy we all went swimming in the pool we had fun playing pool games the water was warm. Me and rene spent time alone in the pool and we got out changed our clothes. We played a few games on the tv the wii Jeopardy. After the game we left to go home. We listen to country music it felt great while she kept holding my hand. She said things that got me upset tho. She stoped at a gas station to grab some stuff.it was my birthday that day rene bought me a vap from there. It was nice of her to do that when she drove back to my place we watched a movie called Fullmetal Alchemist. July 20th she left at 7:48pm we texted our good goodbyes we texted and things were little off on her end but i kept it to myself until she came on. July 22nd she left at 12:59pm she texted me while she was driving that day. At 2:57pm that shes less then an hour away. I waited 40mins and i went out to wait for her. I dont recall what time she only stayed the night there we watched movies and cuddled same as usal. July 23rd she left at 1:21pm. July 23rd she texed me when she was home. she made a text that made me upset at 3:35pm. She said My friend is a big strong man and carrying shit for me. This is werd to say that. She added me on snap that day at 5:01pm. She went to her friends she texted me saying Get ready for me to call you drunk as shit later. Her friends told her to throw her phone in the fire. Things got werd she told me she was transferring money to her friends. But she told me a differnt story when she got here latter that week. She texted me that night on july 23rd at 11:47pm saying she mite not go home tonight it was very werd. She has the full right to go home its like she was doing somthing shes not supose to do. aswell her friends are foricing her she called me later that night 2xs at 1:14am. on july 24th early in the morning she was drunk. Doing werd things on the phone herd moaning and sex nosies on the end of her side. I told her she wont tell me and it stoped. I herd nothing she would not talk to me. This is getting werd i cant trust her at all at this point. July 24th rene left at 1:31pm she came here at 4:30pm. She told me she did something messed up on the 23rd. When she was at her friends getting drunk. She dose not remeber what happen. Thats not a good sign she pulled a $20 out of her bra and she did not remeber how it got there. She would not tell me she shutdown and said nothing. I was upset i was sure she did somthing sexual when she was drunk and she stayed the night there. She would not tell me at all we cuddled and kissed and watched movies with her we order food. Aswell made plans for july 25th. We wanted to go fishing in Tillsonburg ontario. I introduce rene to my fishing buddy from church he drove us to tilsonburg he talk to rene about cars and roads and drama about it. Rene was holding my hand and getting close to me. She was on her phone on and off she texted someone so fast. It was werd like she was hidding something she prevented me from seeing who she was texting to. It seemed off to me but i kept it to myself. When we got there we were fishing i cought lots of bass and sunfish and bluegill and rene seemed off after a few hours. She started to wonder off away from me it was odd cause she went on her phone and messaged someone. She wondered farway on the dock it was very long of a dock. And when i slowly walked up when she was on her phone she had so many tabs open. That she closed them down when i got close to her. It was werd she told me she was looking at what bugs live here. She took some pictures of dragonflys. But iv notice every time i walked away i seen that she would close out of the website she was on. google looking at bugs she was doing something else. I was upset so i slowly went back to her and sat down and fished with her after we left tilsonburg. We went to McDonald's i payed for everyones meal i had the same as rene. Rene was upset i texted her cell even tho i was beside her. And i texted her on july 25th at 7:17pm whats wrong? She would not say. I felt upset like did i do something so when we got home to were i live i told her whats wrong. She became very emotional and cryed and shutdown and told me she did not want to screw this up. She was upset when my buddie from church told her just to pick the rod up if a fish hits. As well the relationship. i told her its ok i will teach you how to fish. So when she was clam and ready we watched a movie on netflixs called spirited away we were holding hands vaping. I got hooked on vaping it helped me to stop smoking cigarettes. It was bed time she was tired so i paused the movie we went to bed. She was on her phone doing stuff on snapchat and other apps like that tic tok. july 26th we got up and we finished the rest of the movie. We relaxed and chilled had fun it was great i kept feeling like this was not real i never had someone who loved me this much. She left at 2:30pm that day. On july 26ths at 5:48pm. She texted me saying home safe i thought she was home i texted her a few time she said she loves me and she said she was driving still. It confused me alot. At 7:16pm that day i was confused it made no seance to me. She told she was home safe she texted me saying. I was. But my friends guinea pig passed. So we're just driving around. I asked her when it was the next time she will see me. She dose not know cause she works. But it has never been were work shifts change it was allways friday and sunday she works she screenshot my text cause i watched a movie it was werd. She screenshot it cause what i said it was funny. I said thats mad i asked her if she was home now at 9:16pm. I asked if i can call her and she said yes at9:17pm. When i was on the phone i can here that she was texting someone else. I aksed her and she told me a differnt story that it was the washer going. I was having a hard time trusting what she said the texting sound started to slow down cause now i know she was being cautious. I texted her while we were on the phone but she did not text back. I kepted texting 5xs every so many mins i found that werd and strange. Even tho she was still awake on the phone. I told her on snapchat at 3:02am i vocied my concers about the $20 how she got it she told me the messed up part. I masturbated while we were on the phone. I muted myself and didn’t want to tell you because I thought it was weird. And she told me finally how she got the $20. Rene said I was teasing you, I didn’t think anything of it but I realize now that it sounds really bad.But it made no seance cause she e-tranferd money to her friend explain that.but i did not say that to her. She told me her friends would back her up by telling me go ask them. They will tell me the same thing. I felt like she told them so if i do the would tell a lie. It should not take this long for her to tell me this? On july 27th at 2:26pm Another notification popped up on badoo app saying rene was online. I told rene why she still had the app on her phone i explained that every time she gose online it send me a notification. I told her this she told me shes been trying to find away to delated the app. I had a hard time trusting her iv told her do you need help. She told me she will just unstall the app. I found that werd but i tryed to trust her best i can. She kept saying she was trying to delete the app but how could someone dose not know how to to that i kept it to myself by trusting her. She told me Honestly I can't tell you what I was doing cause I can't remember. I was probably clearing out notifications. What I can tell you is I have deleted all dating apps and haven't talked to anybody since I started talking to you. It really came off being fishy to be honest it made me upset. How can you not remember she was on it that day?? She told me that She was upset. That she did not want to have this conversation with me. It was more odd she told me that i was taking it a differnt Way. That she was not leading me on thats when she slowly started texting less. I was texting her 3xs and waiting. It started to slow down the texting intervals 6 mins apart at 2:57pm she told me that her My messages aren't sending but they were tho?. The texting kept getting slower the intervals widen more now. Its every 14mins she was texting me. I texted her 3xs and waited i asked her if she deleted her acount off of badoo. She said i love you it was werd. She told me I feel insecure because I'm worried one day you'll find someone better or someone who makes you feel better than I do. And I don't want that to happen. I want to be with you forever. She wanted me to call her again tonight. July 27th 4:25pm she told me I'm always afraid I'll hurt you. It was werd she told me she was hanging out with her friends at noon tomorrow. The texting intervales kept happening slow 5:47pm. She told me she had to run out and do something normaly she tells me and i dont have to ask. I waited over an hour i called her that night ruffly at 9:43pm i hung up the phone but when we were on there she seemed off. I herd her texting but i said nothing about it cause she told me it was the washer. She woke up early allmost 8pm. I asked her if she had any plans for today she told me Yep. Today I'm hanging out with my friends at noon, we're going to play some games probably. The text intervals kept happening. She told me she got disctracted watching tv it was werd it dose happen tho. But she never did that to me but this kept happening more and more she started to say. She was not good at replying fast. It was not true cause she was texting me alot every min it was fishy. The intervals kept happing. July 28th the texting intervals got worse i waited 20mins i texted her after and noramly she would tell me if she was sleepy or not so i would know i waited 2 hours for a reply back. This is werd i texted her 5xs in the 2 hours. She told me she passed out at her friends place. Then it happen again i waited 2 hours and 30mins some thing going on. She told me i had to trust her she started actting werd. July 29th at 5:17pm. She just out of the blue ask me if i was home? It was odd the last few days i was not aloud to call her cause it would ring 3xs and it came up she forward it to voicemail. I left a message she did not call back this kept happing so we made a plan for her to call me 11pm. It was the only time i can call her once a day it was odd knowing that she mostly not busy. Just relaxing everytime we made this plan it gets pushed aside. And i waited for hours and hour we were on the phone. She was not talking as much i send her many texts she was being werd making sounds and she would. Not respond i herd texting sound from her end its werd. That when we call at night and suposively shes asleep? From expicerince if we sleep while were on the phone it wont hangout up until 7am or 10am. Then it will hang up by itself. But i strongly know she had to hang up then night. Calls were getting shorter were i wake up and im not on the phone with her. It used to last the hole night usaly until she wakes up or hour before she wakes up. But now its werd for it to only last 3 hours or 4. And i know she had to hang up. The texting responce intervals kept getting worse. Were she would reply 15mins or so. It was very werd it was allso off or seemed off. That rene never sleeps or feels sleeply druning half of the day again this happen at. July 30th 6:03pm and i texted her a few times and she did not respond till 8pm. July 31st at 12:10pm rene made a trip for us a while ago. And she told me maybe not to sure. It was off she told me it was supose to be this Augest coming up she told me they have not been talking about it at all. I asked rene if i can call her at 7:20pm. And she told me shes watching a movie. It seemed off cause i used to be able to call her even when she was with her friends or watching movies. It was off the texting intervals got worse she decided on saturday that she wanted to pick me up. She had an idea how she would make her father say yes. By when she drive her father to get beer by asking him if he can come. If he would say no rene told me she would make her father stranded. And make him get the beer himself. She to the 407 ETR she took and told me when she got her. In a bad way she loved me this much she payed $60. To used the road but early that day she became dissmissive when i voiced my concers. She would tell me off i dont want to talk about it this. Started to happen 1 week ago rene headed out at 4:26pm she got her around 6:30pm it was rainy out. Rene drove to pick me up on saturday augest 1st at 6:30pm she took the 401 ramp toaw that cost money. It was a rain day when i got in the car she told me off that she loves me this much that she payed $60. To take the fast rote to come pick me up. We listen to music it was good she holded my hand it felt great like we were one. I belived her with her words that she promies to never leave me and she would marry me. she asked that qestion to me first that she loved me so much she wants to marry me. Aswell wants me to moive up with her shes planing to moive up there this year in perrysound ontario with her friends. It was rainy when she was driving. I kept looking at her having the thought man she loves me i could not belive this is really happening. We listen to country muisc on my phone she loved it she got excited on one of the songs. While she was singing it when we got there dark ruffly 9:30pm. In Newmarket ontarion. She had to pick up her sister from work aswell her friend and we quickly droped them off. Then rene drove to her friends house that was a block away from hers and she helped me introduce them to me. I was shy when meet new people having the thought would we get along. Would they understand what crapy life i had?. Would they be able to emphasize and not be judgemental. Would my words be herd and validated. We then went to here car after i met then. And she drove to her familys house were i met her brother. He was nice and friendly short spoken. Me and rene went down to her room she told me dont mind the mess it was messy and disorganized. But i was not judgemental about it after we went back up and watch a movie on disney plus the movie was Hercules. It was her favoite movie aswell mine. About half way threw the movie we were hungry so she order on uber eats McDonald's. She got the qaruter pounder with fries and cocacola drink. And i got the combo 5 fries. And the same drink the uber driver took longer cause they had to get gas. After we ate and the moive was done we went to bed. She was on her cellphone alot on tic toc and social media and snapchat. After we feel asleep the next day. Augest 2nd. She had to work st tim hortons she got off at 5pm. She lived very close to it ike it was a 3 min walk to her work place. She was a baker there she came back here at break to see me for 15mins. I was downststairs in her room until she was done work. I was tired that day and i still was sick from eating raw chicken from arbeys. After she was done work she came to her room she immediately went to her phone and aswell her nintendo switch. She likes to play animal crossing while she was doing this she put on music. She told me her friends invited us to dinner we went upstairs and iv met her father. He drinks alot all the time he made bodily threats towards me. that i did not like. Rene came back i did not know were she went we left there around 5:30pm. She drove there even tho it was a block away we went to his apartment house. It was disorganized he said he lived with hes father. I asked him when rene sleeps here were dose she sleep?he told me she slept on the ground. I had a hard time trusting that allso he said she sleeps on the couch in the shead. I allso had a hard time beliveing that. Cause rene told me this area is a sketchy area bad area. We all sat on his bed and his girlfriend was there to. They brought alcohol rene had a drink to she had plam bay. They decided they want to get fast food. Rene drove all of us to McDonald's. We order food then we went to walmart were we he got chips and snacks there. Me and rene went to the sport area to look at fishing gear and work out stuff. Iv notice it was kind of werd that her guy friend was allways wanting not to be far away from rene. Aswell close to her it was a fishy feeling And worried me. After wal mart rene drove us to Little Caesars were the guy friend and his girlfriend.It was kind of werd he was talking more to rene then to his own girlfriend. He was outside of the car leaning into renes window was very close to her. Gave her kind of more then just a friendly look. It was really werd after he got the pizzas and crazy bread she drove us around fairy lake in Newmarket. We went back to her friends place. We all sat down on his bed we ate played games on his tv but iv notice he keeps looking at my girlfriend. Rene all the time it was really werd. After about an hour they wanted to go outside to the backyard for them to smoke weed. It was rainy out it was getting dark out they had a shed. There was a chair and a couch but it was werd cause he kept wanting to get close to rene. He sat beside me on the couch while rene was on my lap it was really werd something must be going on. I was upset rene smoked up with them while she was on her phone rene asked her mother to pick us up. When she was there her sister was in the car too. Her mother asked us if we wanted anything from tim hortons i said no. My stumic was still acting werd from arberys this has been going on for about a week her mother drove us home. And me and rene watched some tv for a bit and then we both headed to her room and went to bed. Monday augest 3rd. We relaxed for awhile it was a rainy day her sister wanted to do things so rene drove use to walmart to get food. Me and rene walked off to the clothing area and looked around. Then we walked by with her sister in the cheskout area i steped on yellow paint with my flipflops. We went to the car and i wanted to go to winners. We went there rene said i would look hot in sweat pants so i got name brand sweat pants. So i would look hot for her i did this for her we cheaked out after rene drove us to get buster juice. Her sister offer to buy it. It was nice of her to do so. I got the same drink that rene did. It started to poor down rain we got in the car fast. My mask broke so i fixed it we head back to her familys house rene thought she had unbrellas in the back of her car. No not there we quickly grabed the food and ran inside. Rene went back out with and unbrella and few mins latter came back. We went downsrairs for a few mins and went back up and watched the unbrella Academy. Iv notice she was mostly on her phone texting on snap and messages and video games. We were cuddling and vaping i saw her allmost close to super time. Rene went on this app soon as she open it. It open up a 2 setting chatroom. The app im sure she was on was game for couple and its a dating app chatroom. someone said hi she said hi back. And she notice i was looking and she froze iv notice her hands were shacking fast. Then she quickly log out of the app. She was acting skittish with her phone. Like she was being very carefull when i was around. This been going on for awhile we had poor mans soups for super. Its mashed potatos corn and beef with bread. It was good i helped then peeled the potatoes after super we still watched the tv show. Then rene and i got ready to leave to head to my place. While she was driving we listen to music she ask me if i wanted to see the beautful weiw that she dose not take as much. Or the normal view thats a little faster we wanted the beautyful veiw. She drove to orangeville ontairo. We went to MacDonalds she did not want to get anything. I got a large TT coffe and we headed back to my place. She drove there nice areas while she was holding my hand. on and off alot while listing to music she loved poetry songs we allso listen to them. She go so excited when she listening to the song she was singing alot. I kept looking at her seeing her beautiful smile that iv just captured that moment with her. Like i never wanted this moment to end it was so peaceful to see her happy. While she was singing to me and looking at me with those beautiful eyes. She got a call from one of her friends she was upset that her mother is abusive to her. Rene made a plan to see her soon to spend time with her. Rene kept driving we saw a lake view it was beautiful. She told me this was why she came down her was to see. Later we were in a country view she pointed on my right side view look at the sunsetbclouds. I looked too it was getting darker out we were closer to london and i told her i had to go. She eventually drove me to a gas station were i used the washroom. She wanted to go but i told her there was a spider eyeballing me when i was using the washroom. I pointed it to her she said never mined she hated spiders. When she got to london and went to my place she used the washroom. We sat and she turned on netflixs and we watched the lion king the newest one. Halfway i was hungry so she offerd to drive me to McDonald's we got the same thing as usal. we went back home finished most of the movie we went to bed. While she was on her phone she was on tic toc and other social media and snapchat texting the S.L.U.T group. We feel asleep and when i woke up iv notice she was allready fully awake before me on her phone doing stuff. it was now augest 4th we relaxed and she wanted to go somewere good. She drove me to Tim hortons and she got us matching braclets blue with word dream on it. and coffee so we went to rock glen at 4:17pm. She said she loved it she wanted to see it again. While at rock glen she was on Reddit reading about the worst breal ups she read some to me aswell she was on snapchat. Were she took pictures of me behind my back were she did not asked me. It was uncalled for. Iv seen the story on snap. Were she said i payed attention more to fishing then her. It was not true she took the picture as soon as i cast in a good spot. Then i would give her full affection. We went to a weed store were she got edable cocolate. and i stayed in the car when she got in i put on a song called bedrock by young money. She new this song she sang to it. I felt that iv captured another moment with her it felt like time slowed down. We went to harveys she wanted to go there i payed for our meals. we went back to my place and watched a disney moive called tangled. She was on her phone alot she took the weed edables. She told me ten mins latter when she somkes weed or when she high. She gets really horny i got upset made me wonder what she dose if she gets this way when im not there. She showed no signs of it towards me. It was werd cause i was her boyfriend she was on her phone playing games and once someone on snap sent this❤💝💕 to her. She emeaditly swiped the message away i asked who was that she did not say anything. I was really upset i told her i love you. She did not say she was on her phone then i said it again and she looked me in the eyes and she said i love you. Her eyes moved side to side fast when she said that to me. we went to wendys at night time and i bought her a cocolate frosty. aswell I was holding my unbrella for her we went to the hasty market were she grabed a big bottle of cocalco. We went back to my place and finished the movie. And we went to bed she was on her phone doing the same thing. She told me if i fall asleep she will tale pics of me i told her dont its not right. She said she wont but idk cause when i woke up she was fully awake on her phone on apps and looking up vidoes. And on snapchat to. We got up and watched a few shows of the unbrella Academy. and she quickly went to tim hortons and i got a coffee. After she went to the gas station to put air in her tires and told me she did not need to get her break cheak until end of this month. She droped me home and i kissed her she had to leave to go home on augest 5th. She hardly texting me much or putting in effert like she said she keeps saying she is when shes on her phone. Shes glued to her phone she kept changing the plan she was supose to see me on augest 10th. But she pushed me to augest 11th. We made that plan before she left she changed it. Cause it was one of her friends birthdays she want to get drunk with her. Rene got upset at me for voicing my concers when plans keep changing when we agreed to a plan. She allso canceld our phone time at 11pm. To go drinking with her friends and stay the night there next morning augest 6th. I texted her she did not respond cause she told me she was going to Toronto early. So i called her and i told her when she was with me in newmarket she was on an app that open to a chat room. she told me she dose not remeber. she then told me she dose not know what she has on her phone. She told me she did not have to get ready until 30mins latter. She became dissmisive and told me she had To go she played mindgames. She told me before i voiced my concers that she dose not have to get ready until half an hour but after i told her she became very avoident. And told me she had to leave i told her i love you. she said it bad in a low voice she hung up. She was going to toronto with her friends that i met in newmarket. She told me they were getting art suplys but did not. Thats werd they went to an art Museum she kept changing her plan. She wanted to stay the hole day with them she promied to text me but she did not. she started to make snapchat story on storymode but she would not text me. It was werd she was on snapchat the hole time she was in toronto. her bitmoji character came up she was on there. Her character was holding a phone with a bubble on top with 3 dots in the bubble. She was texting other people on there why was she not texting me like she promies. I called her that day when i did. her friend that i met told me off that shes crying in the washroom cause he said i was gaslighting her. for voicing my concers he told me to get a life that i was 25 that he has autism to. But its a lie cause u never tell of another autistic person that. He was not showing he has autism at all. he would not listen to me he jumped striaght to conclusion to fast. And made threats to me that he has beef with me. He hung up when i was still trying to expain myself. Rene texted me shes driving at 1:26pm. She told me she unsure if she wants me to call. She started to text me less to the point it was hours. She told me she was talking to her sister to catch up on things. Shes not been text me as much something is going on. She dose not want to tell me i felt unloved. 4:18pm she texted me saying shes driving now again shes texting me less im waiting hours on end. She was playing headgames saying if i wanted this relationship or not many times. She said she dose not know if she forgives me for voicing my concers or not. She told me that she not certen if she loves me. On snapchat she herd that her friend picked up when i called rene. I had an apointment that day i told her and i explain whats going on to my consuler. And he help me worte this to rene. Hey rene I value our relationship i have a problem but i want the outcome to be good for us. Somethimes i feel that when i other people out themselfs between our relationship that it becomes difficult to built trust i wont to build greater trust with you help me know how we can do that when i call you im anticipating that your going to pick up and not another person can i count on you to pick up? I did not appreciate what your freind said about me of course its not true and its awkward to defend myself when we hardly know eachother hes jumpimg to conclusions. I would not do that to you. She conpalined to me that i cant add any of her friends were she lives it was werd. Augest 6th at 6:05pm she canceld our plans to call for tonight. She told me I'm not going to be able to call tonight probably. I'm going to my friends house to get drunk and I will most likely be spending the night there. 6:08pm. that she needs time to think about this and the relationship. I waited till 8:44pm. I did something wrong. Last time i told her before she took me to newmarket i was in the hosptial for food poisoning and she did not respond. I texted her again she did not say are u ok. what happen nothing. she said sorry i got distracted. So i lied by saying i was in the hosptial she went on snapchat and looked at my loction she told me my loction was on by the way. She asked was i really in the hosptial and i was honest i said no. I explain why i did lie. She stoped texting me for the hole night i texted her on snapchat aswell her cell. I said this Please let me know if you forgive me. Idk if this relationship is over or not. Please let me know i love you still idk if you do after what iv done im sorry if i made you cry and got you mad please text me or would be best to call thanks. She texted me at 10:13am on augest 7th. She said I will call you later today after I get off work. I waited till 7pm and i texted her she gets off at 7pm. I said Let me know when ur ready to call thank you. I waited 30 mins unusal she texted me unstead of calling me like she said. and she told me the realtionship is over she said I’m ending this relationship. At this moment I believe that there are personal issues affecting both of us and until we can sort them out it is not good for either of us to be together. I’m sorry but I truly believe that after what happened yesterday and last night I can’t trust you anymore and it would be best for the both of us to go our own separate ways. I called her and she picked up iv tryed every way to fix it by starting off as friends she said no were done done. She could have had the decintce to call like she said. But she took the cowerds way threw text she went on snapchat and called me a phyco for lieing once. Her friends and sister made her think she was in the right and i was wrong that day. She when to Toronto were she was at somoens house she probly had sex with some guy shes hardly in toronto In the relationship she would not tell me about her exs. Aswell would not tell me if she still has contact with them iv notice when the waters get ruff like voicing my concers. She will walk away and not talk about it. Aswell when she dose it makes things worse it was not right of her to cancel plans we made when shes upset she said she vauled the relationship as an 8. But she showed a 4 in the last week she was putting more effert with her friends i guess she did not sincerely loved me i gave her a promies ring to merry her on augest 1st she kept saying she will never leave me she loves me she wants to have kids with me. She wanted me to movie with her in perrysound ontario this winter she made all these promies that she did not kept. To this day i still love her with all my heart i admite i did some wrong things. But non of the less when things get tuff she throws in the towel all i can say i hope rene sees this I love you i hope you forgive me and i hope my dreams come true by having someone who really wants me for me and means it with sincerely words and heart.
2020.08.14 04:00 flashyamoebaTheresa Irving Soldati / Lady Fisto
Name / Alias: Theresa Irving Soldati / Lady Fisto
Age: * 20
Alignment:* Fight Gurl
Public Information:* Recent arrival to Devilfish. Know for starting fights with anyone interested. Physical Appearance Standing 5' 6" tall, this fair-skinned woman has a very aggressive feel about her, and she has a small bruise on her torso which resulted from a fight years before. She has a narrow face with a rounded jaw, a large nose, small ears, and very thin lips. Her brown eyes are narrow, and she has plucked eyebrows. She has long, blond hair which usually tied in a ponytail. She wears light eyeshadow and an obvious foundation. She has long arms, a narrow torso with lightly defined muscles, bony hips, and long legs. In costume: https://cdnb.artstation.com/p/assets/images/images/026/364/583/large/kyoung-hwan-kim-ccn-f.jpg Mentality Is here for a good time not a long time. Pretty conflict-oriented on account of her shard. And hedonistic and while she did have a perfectly average amount of self-control before her trigger event she sees much less need for restraint now. Bit of a bully. Can be perfectly cordial with people who she has already set up a pecking order with. Resources Studio apartment in the cheap part of town. Electric scooter. Wealth Level: 4 Equipment Armor more meant to look good, doesn't provide any real protection. Arming sword she got off etsy, plastic zip ties, first aid kit. Skills European style sword fighting, ambidextrous, a basic understanding of psychology, great barista, first aid, Power: Lady Fisto has a Striker power that activates when she pulls on her wrist, either wrist. Her hand will detach and in its place, one of six powers will take shape over the course of five seconds. I will roll a 1d6 in bot commands. She can pull on her wrist at any time to remove the weapon and I will re-roll a d6 in bot commands. She can actively choose to deactivate her power by pulling on her wrist, removing the weapon, and willing her hand to reform. She can detach both hands but tends not to do this as it leaves her without hands to grab and manipulate objects. She can ask someone to pull her wrist and her power would activate. Power 1: A flaming sword will pop out of her wrist. The blade is a meter long and on fire, about as hot as a campfire. That's it. Power 2: A 6 meter long whip will pop out of her wrist.. The whip splits into three segments at the 4 meter mark. The whip is prehensile and can be used to grapple people and things. After cracking the whip it is followed up by a brief 40 mph gusts of wind hitting the spot struck by the whip. Power 3: A large mace head forms at her wrist. When she strikes something with the Mace head she can make it explode. The explosion is powerful enough to crack multiple bones easily. If someone was struck directly in the head they would die. Power 4: A large gauntlet in the shape of a wolf's head forms. The mouth of the gauntlet works and if it bites someone an entire dire wolf sized mechanical wolf will pop out. The mechanical wolf is as strong as a dire wolf. Lady Fisto has no control over it, but it will treat those Lady Fisto regards as enemies as enemies itself and leave allies alone. Limited to one wolf, but Lady Fisto can then use a new power. Disappears after an hour, when destroyed, or when Lady Fisto wills it. Ppwer 5: A jackhammer comes out of her wrist. The jackhammer had two modes. Against inorganic material it will behave like a normal industrial strength jackhammer. Against organic material it will instead inject the organic material with a topical anesthetic and paralyzer. Generally getting struck in 3 spots will take someone out of the fight. Takes about 20 seconds from being injected to paralysis. Power 6: Steal claws sprout from her wrist. The claws are sharp but regular sharp. When Lady Fisto slams her claw into the ground, sharp steel bars emerge from the ground in a 20-foot cone. The cone is 60 degrees Fisto also has a Brute package to go along with her Striker power. She can deadlift 4,000 pounds, and her skin is equal to class 3 body armor and plate mail. She also has a slight healing factor mostly useful outside of battle to recover from fights far quicker than a normal person. Trigger type Single Natural Example The time for retribution was now. Theresa ripped off her Starbucks apron and pulled on her wrist. "Okay asshole you think a latte and a date with me is an acceptable order? Let's go, bitch!" Her hand popped off and a jackhammer formed from her wrist. She charged at the customer jack hammer moving wildly. Smack, smack, smack, the jackhammer hit against the customer. He recoiled more from surprise then actually pain. Theresa took this time to pull at her wrist again, the jack hammer falling off and a long whip taking its place. She struck at him with the whip and seconds later a strong gust of wind formed despite them being inside a Starbucks. The wind knocked the man over and the paralytic started to take effect before he could stand back up. She pulled on her wrist again and three long metal claws popped out of her wrist. She slammed her hands into the ground in the direction of gawking onlookers. Sharpened metal rods popped up from the ground between her and the onlookers, creating a barrier between the. She flipped them off with her other hand and started walking home to figure out where she was going to find a new job. Backstory: Theresa Irving Soldati was just your average Ashton college student. Pursuing a degree in psychology at Ashton U while interning at the parahuman asylum for college credit. Unfortunately, instead of actual experience in the field of psychology, she mostly worked as a glorified receptionist. Only spending 1 out of 5 workdays learning something relevant. This all changed the day of the Asylum breakout. She was manning the desk when Guillotine showed up. She tried to hit the panic button, but he was faster. He threw several power enhanced coins at her, she tried to protect her face by putting up her arms. This protected her face, but her arms ended up horribly cut up. She triggered lying in a pool of her own blood, wounds on her arms streaming out blood in the center of the Asylum. Starting Reputation: -2F?
2020.08.13 19:46 MrMarshmallow[COMC] Started Collecting in 2012. Recommendations Welcome. Let's Play Some Games!
https://imgur.com/a/ztMKnDR Hey boardgames, I hope you're doing well (and staying safe!) As the title says, I have been collecting since 2012. On and Off really. Above is a pic of my current collection. There are a few games not pictured. Favorite Games Overall - Pandemic, Root, The Crew, Gloomhaven (Jaws of the Lion), Shakespeare, Robinson Crusoe, Targi Party/Drinks - Cockroach Poker, Skull, The Mind, Red7, Roll and Writes, Cinephile, Blockbuster New and Enjoying Gloomhaven (Jaws of the Lion) - Finally broke into the Gloomhaven club and I can see what all the hype is about. My friends and I are doing a campaign and absolutely loving it! Marvel Champions - I collected a few packs of the LoTR LCG a long time ago, but this is the first LCG where I am up-to-date. Really enjoy this is both a solo and multiplayer game (usually three and under). What Would I Change There are a lot of games in my collection that I just don't get to the table as often, and it might be time to start selling (or, giving away to friends and family). Games like *Bomb Squad, Arctic Scavengers (*prototype) Hot Rod Creeps, Garden Dice, etc. Where did my interest start? I've always really enjoyed board games, but it was around 2012 (Senior In college) when I started purchasing a lot of my own games. Since then, I've loved building a collection and playing games with all of my friends and family. Let's Play Games! A lot of my friends and I have recently been playing a lot of Tabletop Simulator. While it can never replace the sensation of being in the same room and the tactile feel of board games, we're having fun with it. Would love to play a game sometime. :D
2020.08.11 02:31 beamclRewatching Josiah and Lauren’s honeymoon episode and I am not remotely convinced that they can even stand each other 🚻
I know it’s been speculated that Josiah is gay but after rewatching Josiah and Lauren’s honeymoon episode I’m not convinced that they’re even really friends. They’re definitely not comfortable together and don’t seem to know each other at all. There’s a perpetual look of disgust on Lauren’s face when they go on their hot rod date and to get coffee (for the first time ever) while they’re in Austria/Germany. These dates take place after their first night as a married couple but Lauren never shows any honeymoon sparkle or an inkling that she’s happy. She pulls away from him constantly. Josiah talks a lot when they’re at the coffee shop, which is what his siblings say he tends to do whenever he’s really nervous. I know we say that the majority of the Duggar children are subtly forced into courtships by JB but Josiah and Lauren give off a very different vibe to me that is deeper seeded. This episode is not your typical awkward Duggar couple talking head. It’s straight up cringe. There’s a scene where Josiah is standing in front of the window in their hotel room and says “I learn every day that Lauren is perfect. I still ask myself, wow how did I get to marry her?” After this rewatch I’m pretty much 100% convinced in the arranged marriage theory for these two. —— UPDATE: Ok, so I just watched Bella’s birth on TLC go. Lauren’s body language towards Josiah right after the baby is born is VERY telling. Again, she pulls away and seems very annoyed by him. Minute 25 onward. Awkwarddd
2020.08.09 20:39 thehorrorwriter2My werewolf novel Lunar Loons is on Amazon! Feel free to check out the first chapter below
Not many people believed in werewolves back then. Not in Havana (pronounced Hayvanna), Florida anyway. But shit changed on that Monday in May... at least for the unfortunate patrons and employees at Crawford’s diner. The restaurant had been there since the seventies. Not so much a mainstay as a survivor. People in Havana liked the breakfast, the lunch. The cheese grits and fried chicken. But come around sundown, Tallahassee, Florida offered the nightlife. The chain restaurants, the clubs, the cute bars and pretty young people. The type of glitz and glamour Havana just couldn’t afford to match. With his daddy’s inheritance money, Jackie Crawford bought the abandoned shack-turned-Havana-mainstay. He had a prime location, after all. Right outside the city limits and on that slab of highway leading straight down to Florida State University, Florida A&M, and Tally’s unique vibrancy. Normally, Crawford’s would be packed during the day, but turn into a ghost town by the time evening gave way to darkness. The customers inevitably migrating to bigger and better things. Especially on the weekends. But still, this Southern-fried restaurant wasn’t a bad accomplishment for a black man opening up his first and only business in the first few years after segregation. Of course, May meant the dead season. Summer semester a lull for the Tallahassee traffic. A lull in students and commuters. With the arrival of May, so went Tally and Havana’s commerce. Jackie always prepared for this exodus. From mid-May to early-August was when the employees mostly served him and whatever local stragglers appeared. And today was no different. Monday evening brought about nothing but a stray customer or two. Jackie hid in his usual corner booth. Paperback in hand, glasses in tow. Aside from the occasional glance at the Atlanta Braves game on a bulky T.V., Jackie’s only other entertainment was the whisky mixed into the strongest coffee in town. Crawford’s hadn’t changed much in fifty years. Not on Jackie’s watch. The small town diner vibe was captured in the form of stained booths, big windows, and bar stools. Toward the back of the diner, a dusty jukebox offered no tracks past 1981. Just strictly Motown, rock n’ roll, and the occasional doo-wop. All personally curated by Jackie himself. Standing behind the counter, the lone waitress stared at the homemade hours sign: Sunrise-Sunset. The sign Jackie had Scotch-taped to the glass door entrance numerous times over the decade. Needless to say, Molly Campbell was damn ready for that sunset… For this dull shift to end. At forty-two, Molly could be doing better. At least, that’s what she kept telling herself... but a GED and a handful of community college credits at TCC only got you so far. Especially for this born-and-bred Hayvanna hostage. She scanned the desolate diner. Only one customer left, not counting Jackie. Over by the bathrooms, in the diner’s darkest terrain lurked a tall man Molly had never seen before. He kept to himself right from the start. Never spoke to Molly outside of growling his order: steak and eggs. Medium rare. This customer was quarantined on his own island. Come to think of it, Molly realized she hadn’t even gotten a good look at him. The man’s scruffy facial hair covered his brown skin. His eyes avoided hers. He wore a dark trench coat weeks before Memorial Day, here in the sizzling Florida sunlight. Molly was shocked when the guy had ordered seconds... especially considering his wiry physique. Indulging in an internal countdown, Molly ran her fingers along the cash register. The Braves game on a painful commercial break. Neither the man nor Jackie were saying a word. One glance at Molly’s cell phone offered no solace. Such was the life of a single, working-class woman... one living off a modest if not minimum wage. At least, she didn’t have to wear a hideous apron and even uglier uniform… She talked Jackie out of that in 2012. Sighing, Molly pushed her long red bangs away. Felt the sweat stick through her jeans and gray t-shirt. Crawford’s never a place of class but cheap Southern comfort. But no Monday evening would be complete without Burl Ward walking in at seven-thirty. Not that Molly minded. Beneath the stained collared shirt was a stout man. And beneath Burl’s fuzzy beard was a warm, round face. Nothing but smiles and dignity. He waved over at the owner. “‘Sup, Jackie!” rang Burl’s Southern accent. Moving at a glacial pace, Jackie looked up. His hand slower than his gaze. “Hey there, Burl!” Molly couldn’t help but crack up. Burl made his way to his usual spot by the door. In a booth all on its own… and far away from the stranger. Grinning, Burl waved at Molly. “Hey, what’s going on, Molly!” On instinct, Molly grabbed a notepad and headed for this ‘patron’ saint. No need for menus. “Just waiting on you!” she cooed. “Oh really!” Burl replied. “I must be the man of the hour!” “Always!” yelled Jackie’s rasp. Molly stopped at Burl’s booth. Her pen and notepad at the ready. “Just the usual?” Burl gave the table a light slap. “You got it!” Molly smiled… until she looked off toward the other side of the diner. Toward the mystery man in booth number ten. He sat facing the opposite direction. Just staring at the wall. The bland ornaments before him displaying All-Americana caricatures like smiling waitresses, delicious dishes, and hot rods. A portrait of 1957 struggling to resurrect itself. The sight unnerved Molly. Sure all she saw was the back of the man’s head, his buzz cut and nothing more. But there was still the trench coat... How quiet he was. Something’s not right, Molly worried. “You know me too well,” Burl continued. Back in Crawford’s mode, Molly forced a smile for Burl. “Yeah. That’s what happens when you come in everyday,” she teased. Partly out of attraction and partly out of tipbait, she leaned in closer. “I think we’d be out of business without you.” Burl just sat there in a schoolboy silence. His grin in a nervous excitement. With that, Molly strutted away. Flaunting her ass for what she knew would be Burl’s eager gaze. Of course, she wasn’t wrong. Burl watched her walk all the way up to the counter. Not that Molly was complaining. Recovering, Burl looked off toward the back. His turn to notice the man in the trench coat. To feel that slight unease... Molly got ready to enter the kitchen. She brushed aside her fluttering bangs once more. About to push the door- “Hey, Excuse me, Molly,” Jackie’s voice startled her. Molly saw Jackie glide right past her. A short and pudgy blur. The speed well beyond his seventy-nine years. Before she could react, Jackie snatched her notepad. “I’ll tell Zach,” he reassured her. “Okay,” Molly said. Recovering from the ‘scare’, Molly watched Jackie enter the kitchen, the door shutting behind him. Molly couldn’t help but smile. Why so jumpy, she told herself. We’re about to close. Sighing, she confronted the diner entrance. The glass doors and many windows showed only a small sector of the parking lot. To Molly’s relief, only Burl’s black F-150 was seen amongst the employee vehicles (including Molly’s clunker Camry). And no cars were coming down that highway anytime soon… However, once Molly surveyed the diner, her relief was short-lived. Now she couldn’t shake the lingering dread. Not because Burl was immersed in his cell phone but because she realized she hadn’t seen Trench Coat Man’s vehicle. Hell, she never saw him in one. Considering he paid thirty minutes ago, maybe this guy couldn’t leave... At first, Molly wanted to rationalize the fear, but such a skill wasn’t one of her strengths. She looked back out those front doors. Maybe the weirdo had parked further down, somewhere by the alleyway. In the excess spots Crawford’s hadn’t needed since the 90s. Sure, the guy could’ve been homeless. Or a harmless drifter… God knows, Crawford’s got many of those… Just none this fucking creepy. Molly couldn’t suppress the paranoia. She never could. Especially with the sun now fading fast. Nightfall was upon the diner. * 7:55. Still no one had gone near the jukebox. And the weird guy still hadn’t left. Molly ditched her cash register station. Who the Hell knows what Jackie and Zach are doing back there? With a flirtatious flourish, she stopped at Burl’s table. Put a hand on her hip as she beamed her baby blue spotlight on this valued customer. “You like it?” “Mm-hmm!” Burl responded. He lowered his fork, the pecan pie melting in his mouth. “It’s amazing like always, Molly!” Chuckling, Molly tapped the table. “I made it especially for you...” “I can tell!” Outside, streetlights began to cut on. One out of three did anyway. Molly looked out a window. Besides the humming lights glowing above the front door, her surroundings stayed in those twilight shadows. Thank God this place closes at night, she thought. “Say, Molly,” Burl began. Shattered from her thoughts, she smiled at him. Burl struggled with his words. The semi truck driver now skidding on emotions rather than wheels. “I know you’re usually busy on the weekends… but, uh..” Molly didn’t interrupt. She just kept her gaze on him. Burl wasn’t bad-looking after all. And in Havana, any man without kids or a rap sheet was a plus. Nevermind, a steady job. “Would you, uh, want to go to Tally with me Friday night?” Burl finally got out. He flashed a toothy smile. “Maybe go see that new Marvel movie or-” “I’d love to!” Molly replied. “Great!” Burl let out a sigh. Motioned a trembling hand toward the waitress of his dreams. “Do you want me to pick you up…” Confident, Molly nodded. “I think I can switch shifts with Suzie.” She turned. Then wished she hadn’t… Trench Coat Man was now sitting on the other side of the booth. Far away from his food and empty glass of Cherry Coke. He just sat motionless and still. His beard somehow messier and longer. “So pick you up at your place?” Burl asked. Molly faced him, her seductive coolness rattled. “Uh, yeah-” The kitchen door burst open. Jackie Crawford was off and running. A man in a hurry. Startled, Molly and Burl both looked toward him. Jackie gave a quick wave. “Melissa called! I gotta go!” “Aw, okay,” Molly responded. Jackie rushed past them as he headed straight for the door. Toward the intensifying darkness. He pointed Molly toward the kitchen. “Just hold down the fort and make sure Zach don’t do anything stupid!” “Yes sir-” The owner was out before Molly could even finish her sentence. The front door closed quick, sealing everyone inside. Jackie Crawford seen for only a second under that clinical lab lighting before disappearing into the twilight. Molly had handled the stress of closing on her own with or without an idiot like Zach. Even when Burl was there. Just never with a weirdo in a trench coat lurking inside. “Who’s Melissa?” Burl quipped. He smiled at Molly. “Ol’ Jackie got himself a hot date?” “Naw, it’s his daughter,” Molly replied. “Gotcha. I forgot he had a few kids-” Molly staggered toward the counter. “Hold on a sec.” “Oh, I’m sorry.” “You’re fine!” Molly went straight toward the kitchen door but stopped by the register. Unable to resist one more look at that fateful booth. Trench Coat Man still avoided eye contact... Only now he had both hands on the table. Big, hairy hands. “Y’all closing?” she heard Burl ask. Molly glanced back at him. “Uh, yeah, about to.” “I can wait on you-” “Yeah, that’s fine!” Molly flashed another glance at the man. Somehow, his hands got bigger. The beard furrier. Eager to escape this dread, Molly rushed inside the kitchen. Like a rec room, Crawford’s kitchen was a break from the burden of restaurant work. One much needed on the busier nights. Amidst this cluttered conglomeration of pots and pans were several grimy sinks. Stoves and ovens in various states of decay. Molly sweated upon stepping inside. Her nostrils ambushed by the smell of grease. Her gaze greeted by steam… and cigarette smoke. Groaning, Molly walked toward a far-off corner. “Zach!” she cried as she waved the smoke away. Molly then stopped right in front of the man who’d never be employee of the month. “What the Hell are you doing?” Sitting on a stool, Zach smiled at her. The twenty-four-year-old not fresh out of college or the service. But about to be fresh out of cigarettes. “Yo… Molly,” said a shrill Southern whine. He slouched back against a counter, letting more stains pile up on his white tee and apron. Molly glared at him. “Jackie lets you smoke back here?” “Sometimes…” Molly noticed Zach holding a dying cig in one hand, his phone in the other. A YouTube show called Wolf Women displayed on screen. “Hell, he never lets me!” Some concern crashing his chill, Zach nodded at the cig. “Hey, you ain’t gonna tell him, are you?” Molly shook her head in dismay. Crawford’s version of a disappointed mother scolding a slacker son. “Jesus…” Zach shushed her. “She’s coming on!” “Who!?” Zach pointed at his phone. “Listen.” A wild AWOO echoed through the room. One man-made… or woman-made. “Whoo, welcome back to our Full Moon Stream, bitches! I’m your host Anne not Annie, and we’re in hour twelve of our twenty-four hour full moon special!” Anne’s voice was deep and engaging. Her natural talent and experience obvious. “What is this shit?” Molly asked. Zach waved the phone around. Two women seen on screen in a low-budget paranormal channel. “That’s Anne and Julie! They do all that monster and paranormal shit!” Still Molly was confused. “They’re the wolf women!” “And tonight we’ve got some clear skies!” Anne continued, the passion palpable. “Perfect for that full moon about to come out for all y’all crazy motherfuckers!” Not impressed, Molly pointed toward the door. “Well, I’m going back out.” She waved toward the mess. "And clean this shit up a little! We’re about to close in case you couldn’t tell.” “Yeah, yeah,” Zach muttered. Molly snatched the cig out of his hand. Zach stood up, finally showing life. “Yo, what the fuck, Molly!” “No smoking, Zach.” She took a quick puff. I need it more than his ass. Unable to argue, Zach grumbled as he ran a hand through his curly blonde locks. At the mercy of Jackie’s most-trusted employee. Jackie’s only trustworthy employee. “I’m sure it’s gonna get pretty damn crazy out there,” Anne’s voice continued. “Oh yeah!” her younger co-host Julie added. Grinning, Molly handed Zach the cigarette back. “Don’t tell Jackie.” She winked and made her way out. Zach smirked with relief. “Remember, clean this shit up!” Molly yelled. Zach just smirked. “So be sure to watch out for those lunar loonies,” quipped Anne in her lethargic tone. With smartass style to spare. “Or lunar loons, whatever you assholes prefer.” In the diner, Molly shut off the T.V. The Braves were taking it on the chin anyway. She walked toward Burl. His arm was draped over the booth. His beer gut dangling from excess food. Nothing but crumbs on his plates. Molly stole another look outside. Nighttime was getting closer. Now the full moon could be seen… A nocturnal spaceship in the sky. Vivid and bright even when it wasn’t at a hundred percent. “You can keep the change,” Burl said. Molly came to a stop as Burl slid the receipt toward her. Two twenties on top of the twenty-four dollar tab... Not to mention Burl’s scribbled phone number. A scribbled smiley face included. “Just text me about Friday,” Burl said. “Aww,” Molly gushed. She pocketed the receipt. “I will...” Burl surveyed the restaurant. “Y’all ready to run me out?” “Yeah, it’s about that time.” Molly turned. The good moods gave way to diner dread. Trench Coat Man was still there. “Naw, I understand-” “Why’s he still here?” Molly said to him, keeping her voice low. “What?” Being discreet, she faced Burl. All while Molly’s eyes kept watch on the mysterious man. From what little Molly saw of it, Trench Coat Man’s face offered no tells. He was a wax figure. A hairy one at that. “He’s been here for hours,” Molly told Burl. Getting an adrenaline rush, Burl re-adjusted his Ford cap. Even the sight sent chills up his spine. “You want me to do somethin’?” “Naw. I can handle it.” Molly flashed him a smile. “But thanks.” “Okay. If you need me, I’m right here.” Now Molly had to gather up the courage. She hated confrontation… now here she was shivering in May. In Jackie’s makeshift sauna. Behind a stern glare, Molly walked up to booth number ten. “Uh, excuse me, sir.” Burl was watching. For once, not just Molly’s ass either but out of concern. The diner had now gone completely silent, desolate darkness plastered against every window. Molly got closer and closer. Her steps cautious. Still the stranger hadn’t reacted, much less moved. “Sir, we’re closing.” As she stopped a few feet away, Molly still had no clear view. The trench coat was draped over a body that’d gotten bulkier since the man first walked in. Molly could now see a cup of coffee at his sharp fingertips. The mug filled to the brim, the coffee long cold. “We close at eight, sir,” Molly said, her tone shaky. “I’m sorry but you need to go.” Still no response. Molly leaned in closer. Daring to even put her hand on the table. “You’ve already paid but we’re closing.” She gave a nervous smile and nodded toward the door. The Scotch-taped sign. “We don’t serve customers when the sun goes down.” There was nothing. Not a word. The black man looked to be in a catatonic state. Hypnotized by his own hands. Frustration joined Molly’s fear. “Please,” she sighed. “I don’t wanna call the-” Still looking down, the man waved her off in a soft dismissal. His long, sharp fingernails glistening in the dim lights. Human talons that emerged from deep within the skin... Molly took a scared step back. And then she heard the man give her a guttural growl! A murky low sound devoid of humanity. The stranger still didn’t look at her... those cries were warning shots. Or at least, Molly sure hoped so. “Oh God…” Molly muttered. A hand grabbed her shoulder! Molly jumped and whirled around, startled. “Oh God!” “It’s just me,” Burl reassured her. Standing behind Molly, he loosened his grip. His concern obvious. ”You okay?” “Yeah...” She looked toward the man. Burl following her every move. “It’s just…” Burl patted her shoulder. “I got it.” Gladly, Molly staggered back. Letting Burl take over. The trucker stared down the man. Burl standing tall and strong. In a way anyone else would find intimidating. “Hey, buddy.” Burl said in a voice offering anything but friendliness. “She said they’re closing.” Then Burl saw Trench Coat Man’s hands. The clawed paws. They’d only grown bigger. The fingers elongated. Black fur spreading all across the stranger’s skin with startling quickness. Suppressing his nerves, Burl motioned toward the man. “Hey, it’s time to go now! Come on!” But the man wouldn’t budge. Wouldn’t talk. Wouldn’t even look at Burl. Molly saw how the beard swallowed the man’s face up. Covering his entire neck... His shoulders were only broader. His frame at war with the trench coat. Burl looked over at Molly. A quick exchange of nervous glances. Molly reached toward him. “I’ll just call-” Dodging her grasp, Burl turned his attention to the man. Now the trucker was pissed. His face red, his eyes irate. Not only out of ego but to show off for Molly. “Did you hear me!” he shouted. Burl slammed his fist on the table. Coffee splashed from the cup, the dishes and Molly jumped but the stranger didn’t flinch. Their hands never moved. “Burl-” Molly started. “I got this!” he interrupted. Still playing tough, Burl leaned in closer. “If you don’t leave right now, we’re calling the cops, buddy! You hear me!” He reached toward the stranger’s arm. “Get the Hell out!” Like a gunshot, the kitchen door slammed open, startling Burl and Molly. They turned in time to see Zach step out of the kitchen. His shit-eating grin instantly made Molly groan. “Really!” she cried. Laughing, Zach leaned against the front counter. “Hey, I finished cleaning!” He put the phone in his apron pocket. “Can we go now?” Molly glared at him. “No! Hell no!” Zach’s smile vanished. His eyes got big, his expression entering fright. “You just scared the shit out of us!” Molly continued. Behind her, a blood-curdling snarl erupted! The man’s growl at full throttle. “Oh shit!” Zach screamed. Burl and Moll turned around but it was too late. The stranger’s hand shot straight into Burl’s neck! Extended claws and all! Blood sprayed across Molly’s horrified face. The paw moved back-and-forth, rummaging through Burl’s flesh, muffling his painful cries... Journeying through his jugular! The man’s hand twisting what were essentially multiple knives. Creating a blender of gore! Burl’s beard turned crimson. His screams grew murky, drowned out by the blood pouring from his mouth. Now standing over six feet tall, the stranger’s red eyes glared at the group. His trench coat ripping at the seams. The khakis full of tears... None of his clothes able to withstand the transformation! Struggling against the paralyzing panic, Molly stumbled back, teardrops sliding down her face. And when Burl’s dying body began to convulse, she could only scream! “Aw, fuck!” Zach yelled. Snarling, the stranger lurched back, hoisting Burl off the ground! Dark wiry hair coated the man from head to toe, even overtaking his beard. His nose contorted into a snout, his ears sprouting into furry antennas. Toenail claws pierced through the Nikes. From outside, the full moon was a spotlight illuminating what was close enough to a werewolf... At the mercy of the lycanthrope, Burl’s head swiveled about, the claws a string controlling the trucker’s movements. Burl looked on at Molly. Faint tears mixed in with his blood. “No!” Molly cried. “Burl!” Weeping, she backed up against the counter. Her and Zach’s helpless sights glued to the looming execution. Trench Coat Man then got to work. His paw gripped tighter inside Burl’s neck, squeezing the pulpy grue from this human fruit. A crimson waterfall came pouring out! Fueled by euphoria and a literal bloodlust, the man opened his mouth and went straight for it. All of Burl’s blood and bits fell right into the carnivore’s clutches. On to the huge tongue and ferocious fangs. War paint for his fur. “Jesus fucking Christ…” Zach said. The werewolf retracted his paw in a sadistic flourish! A prized chunk of flesh stuck amongst the claws. The meat almost medium rare. Burl fell to the ground. The Ford cap tumbled off before getting soaked in blood. Burl was somehow still alive… but not for much longer. His mouth moved but nothing came out. His neck a sprinkler shooting out red spurts. He turned and faced Molly. His stare sad and fading fast. Distraught, Molly put her hands over her mouth. “Oh God… Burl…” Now the werewolf confronted the two survivors. His red eyes narrowed. A sliver of a smile appearing amongst the fangs. “No!” Zach cried. He turned and veered toward the front door. “Fuck this!” “Where are you going!” Molly shouted. Worried, she yanked Zach’s arm, stopping him. “Call the police!” “Fucking let go of me!” The werewolf let out a chilling howl! An air raid siren of the wild. His audience showed terrified expressions… Just the reaction he wanted. Behind the creature, the full moon stayed a spotlight. The diner center stage for this massacre. Burl’s neckpiece still in the werewolf’s grasp, leaking gallons of blood. Between the added muscles and gooey saliva, Trench Coat Man’s transformation was complete. “I ain’t sticking around!” Zach yelled at Molly. He gave her a rough shove and bolted for the glass door. “Zach!” she cried. Covered in sweat and her favorite customer’s blood, Molly looked back at the werewolf. With sickening showmanship, the creature consumed Burl’s flesh off its claw. A delicacy that could only be enjoyed in slow, methodical munches. Finger-lickin’ good... Molly watched in disgust. Shivering in the Florida heat. Glowering, the wolfman made her watch every bite. Working his way down each claw, each gooey piece of meat one by one. Molly couldn’t watch any longer. She turned away in horror. Then the sadness hit once she saw Burl lying motionless on the ground. He was paler than ever. His dead eyes still on her. The neck still spewing blood. “No… Burl…” Molly said. The werewolf released another howl! One of glee rather than anger. The creature loving this lycanthrope limelight. Backed up against the counter, Molly retrieved her phone. A desperate attempt at 911... Until she heard heavy footsteps near the front door. Molly looked up to see Zach ready to push his way out. In a frenzied panic, Zach waved her over. “Come on!” Molly jammed the phone in her pocket and rushed toward him. The adrenaline carrying her courage. The creature fixated his glare on her. Growling, he reached out and swung a left hook, the outstretched paw just missing Molly! More of Burl’s blood hit her but Molly cringed and kept going. She stopped next to Zach. “Let’s go!” “Alright!” Zach responded. He was ready to lead the way. Ready for this triumphant exit. He threw himself against the door. A simultaneous BANG and SQUISH smashed against the glass! Both Zach and Molly jumped back. Reserves of fear surged through them. “Shit!” Molly screamed. Like a splattered bug, Jackie Crawford’s body was pressed hard against the glass. Blood dripped down the door. Through the cracked glass, Jackie’s eyes were wide open in fear, his mouth wide open to scream. Deep slices and scratches leaving his dead face in fragments. Under the vague lights, Jackie’s organs and intestines were seen dangling out. Gory sausages and scrambled eggs his diner could’ve used… Jackie himself a human blockade trapping everyone inside! “Aw, fuck!” Zach yelled. His quick pathetic attempts to budge the door went nowhere. “We’re fucked!” Molly grabbed Zach’s arm. “Come on!” Using all her might, she dragged him toward the kitchen. Zach stole a solemn look at Jackie’s corpse. “But Mr. Crawford-” “We have to go!” Molly shouted. She pressed on, even as their feet kicked up blood. Struggling through the crimson quicksand. The next roar was loud! And close... Turning, Molly saw the werewolf lunge toward them. But she wasn’t gonna stop! Instead, she picked up the pace. Channeling enough strength to carry the nervous twenty-four-year-old with her! She could feel Zach’s every tremble and shiver. The werewolf’s heavy breathing echoed all around them. The smell of carnage all the more nauseating in the heat. Molly and Zach passed the front counter. The kitchen door well within reach. Still holding on to Zach, Molly reached for it. But then Molly felt a sudden pull from a primeval force! “No!” Zach screamed. Molly felt Zach fly out of her grasp! Then felt the counter’s brute force slamming into her hip. She cried out in pain. “Molly!” Zach screamed. He gasped for breath. His screams quickly suppressed into a whimpering. Like a frightened mother, Molly looked on, her terror at a crippling crescendo. “Oh God… no!” Lurking just a few feet away, the werewolf raised Zach in the air. Both clawed paws sunk deep into the cook’s neck. The red rivers flowing all along those furry arms. Zach struggled and kicked his feet. Squirmed in the creature’s sharp clutches. An agonizing, low yell was all that could escape his lips. Now part of the show, Zach could do nothing but participate in the evil performance. Molly unable to do anything but be a helpless audience. “Zach!” Molly screamed. Savoring the sadism, the werewolf faced Molly. He held on to Zach with ease. Held Molly’s attention with relish. The monster exhibiting great strength and agility… “Let him go, Goddammit!” Molly cried. “Drop him!” The werewolf’s smile of fangs returned. Now he clasped his claws tighter into Zach’s neck, creating a slow rise of the guillotine’s blade… Zach with no choice but to watch those paws get tighter and tighter. Wolfman enjoying every second of it. Zach lurched back, his face contorting in pain. Blood instead of words came out his mouth. His swaying, his swinging, his pitiful attempts at escape only heightened the torture. And sped up his own inevitable demise. Unable to hold back tears, Molly rushed toward them. “Zach!” The werewolf’s guillotine was ready to come hurtling down… In a triumphant squeeze, wolfman compressed his claws! A sudden clap burst through the flesh, popping the jugular balloon! Blood sprayed across Molly. Her hair now even redder. Zach’s head tumbled straight down! Straight to the floor. Molly jumped back on the first bounce. Fell back against the counter on the second. And then let out a devastating scream when the severed head came to a rest! Zach’s eyes blinking before death. Blood and gore gave the diner a long-needed renovation. Now the werewolf lunged in for a feast, gnawing and munching upon Zach’s neck. An all-you-can-eat buffet of human flesh. His snarls and grunts full of pleasure as he made his way down to Zach’s collarbone… Wolfman always one messy eater... Molly stood still, going out of breath. Simultaneously shocked and scared. Act II of the violent production continued. Zach finally stopped blinking. His severed head an all-too-real prop. The werewolf now turning most of Zach’s neck into a disappearing act. The surreal sight chilled Molly to the bone. There was the gore. The werewolf’s carnal strength. His chorus of excited snarls. “God…” Snapping out of her disturbed daze, Molly retrieved her phone and immediately started dialing 911. Another howl rejuvenated Molly’s anxiety! She stopped and confronted the creature. Now able to see the man hadn’t grown much taller… just scarier. Especially covered in her co-workers’ blood and grue. He’s a rabid wolf on two legs... During the feeding frenzy, the werewolf howled again and again. Long bellows from the depths of a dark soul. Even amidst the scattered blood, Molly could see the saliva slinging off his mouth. She felt her heart sink. Felt her hands tremble. She knew... Wolfman was ready for Act III. Molly made her way behind the counter. Got ready to mash the call button. When a CRASH erupted*!* Glass flew everywhere! One shard stuck out the back of Zach’s head. A growl drifted through the diner! Then more howls… a whole creepy chorus of them. Frightened, Molly looked on as the call connected Jackie’s mangled face leaned in through the broken glass, perched right up above the door handle. Now Molly got a better view of those deep slices. How Jackie’s face had been turned into shredded cheese. The old man’s tongue hanging out in dead dog fashion. But what elevated Molly’s terror wasn’t the dead boss. Nor how the shattered door revealed an even brighter full moon. What shook her to the core were the howls roaring through the rural isolation! Howls so similar to Trench Coat Man’s... just as hungry and unsettling and fierce. They’re everywhere! “No…” Molly said. She turned toward the werewolf. He stood there, confident. Zach’s decapitated corpse at his feet. The monster ready for back-up. “911, what’s your emergency?” said a disembodied female voice. The first calm voice Molly Campbell had heard in an eternity. Panicking, Molly put the phone to her ear. Wishing she could dissolve through the iPhone and straight into the operator’s arms. “Come to Crawford’s Diner! It’s on the Tallahassee highway, and. And there’s animals in here, they’re killing everybody!” At first, Molly was wanting to sound collected but that was fucking impossible right now. There was no night breeze. Nothing that could soothe Molly’s sweltering unease. Especially once she saw Trench Coat Werewolf turn toward the door. And then heard more of those emphatic howls entering the restaurant. Of course, the operator couldn’t match Molly’s intensity. No one could. “Ma’am, what’s your name-” “Two people are dead!” Molly screamed. Trench Coat Werewolf’s guttural growl erupted, making Molly cringe. The sound a battle cry. “Just hurry! Send somebody!” “Ma’am, we’ve got-” A ferocious energy knocked the front doors down, sending Jackie’s corpse SPLATTERING near the counter. Right in front of Molly. “Oh God! Mr. Crawford!” Molly shouted. All the glass glistened around the three dead bodies. For a second, Molly stood transfixed by the sight. Particularly the glowing remnants clustered along the werewolf’s fur… Jewelry for the creature’s gory glory. “Ma’am!” the operator’s voice said, finally showing some concern. ROARS ripped through the atmosphere. Each of them scary, but each of them different in tone and strength. “Ma’am, are you there!?” the operator continued. Clutching the phone, Molly scanned the battlefield. Trench Coat Werewolf stayed right where he was, baying at the front doorway. All the other howls and snarls got louder. Their power rattled the other windows. Molly even felt the floor tremble… “Aw, fuck…” she cried. Heavy footsteps scurried about outside. They were fast, frenetic. The sounds of stealthy stalkers. “Ma’am!” the operator said. Molly now backed into the kitchen door. Her feet crunching countless glass, forming a maddening rhythm, interrupted only by the occasional puddle of blood. But no matter the horror, Molly couldn’t turn and run. Couldn’t force herself to look away or cover her eyes. No matter how much the dread decimated her or how disturbing this crime scene was or how sickening that smell of grease and death had swelled, Molly just had to see more. The star werewolf looked right at her. The sinister smirk marking Molly. With triumph, he leaned back and let out his loudest howl yet! One straight from the heart. Driven by excitement. The stuff that wolfpacks are made of! Molly didn’t have time to react. In a split second, the werewolf’s supporting cast leaped through the other windows! Four in a row. More sparkling crystals for the diner’s tomb. But Molly couldn’t move. The sweat and blood kept the clothes stuck to her skin. The heat melting her into the door. Besides the unease, she was awestruck. Trench Coat Werewolf’s final act had left her anything but disappointed. Somehow, the reveal seemed worth the tragedy. Worth the slaughter. A female werewolf now stood hunched over by the door. She was almost as tall as Trench Coat and just as muscular. Her business suit tattered and torn. Long blonde hair scattered amongst the dark fur. Amidst the smeared blood, faint make-up could be seen on that horrifying face. Lipstick adding a vivid red for her fangs. The other creatures stood a little bit shorter and skinnier. Juvenile delinquents dressed in high school clothes. The jeans with more holes and tears than usual. One male put an arm around his female companion. An obvious young couple. Lycanthrope love. All those red eyes stayed on Molly. The saliva smiles as well. The snarls surrounded her. The growls and howls. All the creatures walking on long lumbering legs. Together, they formed a rabid congregation commanded by that strange man in the trench coat. Molly remained slouched back against the door. She had no choice but to show fear… and fascination.What she was seeing was beyond human comprehension. Cryptic Cryptids that no one had ever seen before… or lived long enough to tell the tale. “Ma’am, are you there!” shouted the operator. The alarm shook Molly from the hold of this extraordinary encounter. From the grip of the weird, wondrous werewolves. Through the terror, Molly felt each and every creature watching her. The werewolves enjoying the torturous tension as they deliberated on their dessert. Business Suit licked her lips. “Hello!” the dispatcher shouted. “Ma’am!” Molly jammed the phone to her ear. Submerging it into her skull. Her subconscious. “Send someone!” The gang of wolves took a menacing step closer. Their congregation in sync. One of the teens pretended to lunge at Molly while another swiped their paw in the air. Cheap tricks to make Molly flinch that worked. Molly’s grip grew tighter to the phone. Hanging on for dear life. “We’re sending someone-” the operator started. “Bring a shitload of silver bullets!” Molly interrupted. With the tumultuous start of a turntable, the jukebox erupted with The Platters’ “Blue Moon”. The bombastic harmonies startled Molly, making her drop her phone. The incessant tempo matching her pounding heart. Her fright. “They’re on the way!” said the operator, her yells buried beneath the song. Blue mooon… Another howl hit Molly! She looked toward the jukebox. The eyesore antique aglow with life. You saw me standing alooone... Molly saw a creature leaning against the jukebox, this werewolf the de facto leader of the teenage pack. His blue jeans and black leather jacket even tighter over the fur and muscles. The young man bringing I Was A Teenage Werewolf to chilling 2020 life. Without a dream in my hearrrt…. Crawford’s speakers never sounded so loud. The doo-wop was deafening. The backing vocals baying for blood. The creatures roared with approval! This classic track ready to get the werewolf party started… much to Molly’s unease. Without a love of my owwwn! The gruesome group got closer. Their growls and fangs horrifying. Having fun, the teen leader slid a claw along one of the tables. The long, agonizing screech further unnerving Molly’s soul. Trembling, Molly pointed at the werewolfpack. Unable to feign toughness. Not when she was this fucking scared. “Get the Hell out of here!” She got nothing but two choruses. The Platters’ elegant and pretty. The creatures animalistic and savage. One full of soul. The other merciless. . Blue mooon, blue moon, blue mooon, blue moon “Get the fuck out!” Molly screamed. The monsters marched for their prey. For Molly. Trench Coat Werewolf got in the lead. With a smirk and a snarl, he raised his left paw to lead the charge. These wolves faster on hind legs than all fours. A shivering mess, Molly pushed open the kitchen door and jumped inside. Into a bomb shelter of stifling humidity and trash but an upgrade over the diner’s carnage. She grabbed a steak knife. A long, drawn-out howl was heard. Molly whirled around. One hand ready to slam the door, the other clinging to the first silver weapon she saw. Snarling for flesh, the werewolves charged past the counter. Their claws and teeth ready to devour anything in its path. * Sitting between Julie and Mack, Anne took command of the latest call. “So what happened?” she said into the mic. “I was terrified!” shouted the caller, the familiar voice emanating off the speakers. The voice belonging to none other than Molly Campbell. “I didn’t know what to do, the werewolves just kept coming after me!” Her heavy breathing overtook the airwaves. Her sobs theatrical. “They were hungry, Annie!” “Anne not Annie,” Anne replied with snark to spare. Her co-host Julie chuckled. “Mr. Crawford and Burl were dead!” Molly continued. “They slaughtered them!" Decades of radio and podcasts helped Anne hide her smirk. But still in her mid-twenties, Julie was unable to repress the laughter. “I’m serious!” cried Molly’s defensive wrath. “I’m not lying, Anne! I saw them kill them at Crawford’s diner! They did it!” Skeptical, Anne stole a look at the laptop. Many lights were beaming on screen. Dedicated callers awaiting their turn at a North Florida fifteen minutes of fame… “They, they were closing in on me!” Molly yelled, her voice getting shriller. “They were running inside the kitchen, Anne, I’m telling you! Every single Goddamn one of them! You've gotta believe me!" 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This method can get you there, but it has its pitfalls! Drive-in 'B' film movie starring Chuck Connors and Lori Nelson. We all know the struggles of dating someone wack or being single, but dating someone that's a little TOO hot is pretty stressful as well. And Justin Baldoni ... Need a professional amp but can't drop a million bucks? Check out the Fender Hot Rod Deville for the most cost effective, pro sound possible! Become a Patron... The New Fender Blues Junior, Hot Rod Deluxe and Deville III 3 Three http://www.andertons.co.ukutm_source=youtube&utm_medium=chappersvideo&utm_campaign=Fender... 'On The Table' by Silent Partner _ No Copyright Music. NARRATED BY DAVE. In the 1950s hot rods were becoming a menace. No longer confined to racing on the dry lakes of California, these junkers turned street racers were causing a ... Drag Strip Riot! Teenagers gone wild! Rare classic hot rod film from the 50's. 2018 45th annual Turkey Run at Daytona Beach, FL Speedway. Thousands of custom cars and trucks at America's largest outdoor auto and truck show and flea mark... To support my efforts to create more clips please donate to me at www.patreon.com/allinaday. I did not have a hot rod car back then but I had friends who did...