Miscellaneous Feeds

[XG4U 2018-10-01] Pride & Repentance

Furiously Eclectic People - Mon, 10/01/2018 - 19:03

Pride & Repentance

We're dealing with two passages of 2 Samuel.

One was when Uzzah died when he touched the Ark,

    When they came to Nacon’s threshing floor, Uzzah reached out to the ark of God and took hold of it because the oxen had stumbled. Then the Lord’s anger burned against Uzzah, and God struck him dead on the spot for his irreverence, and he died there next to the ark of God.
    2 Samuel 6: 6-7 (HCSB)

This was far less about Uzzah than about David. He broke the rules on how to transport the Ark. It wasn't to be carried by cart or oxen. A consideration is that if nothing happened after a non-Levite (not that they were allowed to touch it either but it was their duty to transport it) touched the Ark, the people would lose respect. As well, for Uzzah, it was his death but as far as can be seen it did not affect his salvation. So there were two infractions, one being the disrespectful mode of transit and the other being touched as opposed to it being properly carried on staves safely away from touch.

...and the second when Michal was barren;

    David returned to bless his household. But Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, “How the king of Israel honored himself today, uncovering himself today before the eyes of his servants’ maids, as any vulgar fellow might shamelessly uncover himself!” David said to Michal, “It was before the Lord, who chose me in place of your father and all his household, to appoint me as prince over Israel, the people of the Lord, that I have danced before the Lord. I will make myself yet more contemptible than this, and I will be abased in my own eyes; but by the maids of whom you have spoken, by them I shall be held in honor.” And Michal the daughter of Saul had no child to the day of her death.
    2 Samuel 6:20-23 (NRSV)

The latter issue with Michal/Michel (depending on translation) is a little harder to connect at first. We don't know for sure the reason why she was barren. It isn't mentioned that God made her barren because of her words. The probable purpose of the passage is to show the distinct difference between the humble house of David and the prideful house of Saul where Michal was from. The barren connection could be from God, from David no longer taking her to his bed, Michal being too snooty to bed David or something else entirely. We simply don't know.
...

The first passage was more about the overall neglect of the ark and the second passage was something we just don't know however it's mentioned to speak about humility versus pride. If one sees the latter as a response to the former, perhaps an image is clear of David making a grave error and then choosing humility to God in repentance.

To look at a bigger picture, read the whole chapter. Notice how David is angry that his actions caused the death of Uzzah in such a way and how it humbles him so much he wavers in his ability to even care for the Ark. When he sees how the Lord blesses Obed-edom who’s house was in interim holding the Ark, David took a new stride with it and decided to push aside his pride and arrogance.

David sins and the ramification was Uzzah’s death which led to David’s shock not only at the consequence of his behaviour but also at his own behaviour itself that led to the consequence. He then repents, humbles himself and is blessed. To highlight this at the end of the passage, Michal sees David's vulnerability and humility responding to it with a venomous verbal attack. David's response and our lesson is that humility before God and others is more desirable than being prideful.

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[EHM 2018-10-01] Exhibition 5 Bruins @ Canadiens

Furiously Eclectic People - Mon, 10/01/2018 - 18:51

Shipachyov-Lehkonen-Drouin
Hischier-Deslauriers-Hyman
Thornton-Jokinen-McCarron
Koivu-Tatar-Dawes
Alzner-Valiev
Sergechev-Muller
Hicketts-Honka
Price-Lindgren

As usual, the opposing team scored first. We must work on it however this tight game went to a shootout that we lost. Price, Jokinen, Lehkonen and Drouin all failed us.

Koivu and Tatar showed some more chemistry and everyone else looked pretty good. Muller is being given more slack than the average player because we gave up a 2nd rounder for him and he projects to become a good player.

Jokinen has arrived as a PTO. As if we needed more wingers to choose from....

The Beast had an Exhibition game seeing Raaymakers do well in nets with Valcourt, Miceli and Addison getting the three stars of the game. Petti didn't do well. The AHL crackdown on rough-stuff hurt the IceCaps in their Exhibition with the Wolfpack. Pezzetta was ejected after beating the blades off Cormier. Danault showed why he almost made the Habs; Pontarelli and Juulsen also had a good game.

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[EHM 2018-09-30] Exhbition 4 Sharks @ Habs

Furiously Eclectic People - Mon, 10/01/2018 - 18:48

Winger Jussi Jokinen accepted a try-out offer with the Habs and has started practice but is not slated for this game. While time may not allow, there is some expectation the team will try him with fellow Fin Mikko Koivu.

Ship-Goulet-Baun
Hisch-Domi-Gall
Thorn-Lehk-McCarron
Koivu-Tatar-Dawes
Muller-Weber
DeSimone-Green
Hickets-Honka
Lindgren
Price

Lindgren played a perfect game in nets with 24 saves. The Habs outshot the Sharks 35-24.

DeSimone showed some rookie weaknesses in his game for the first time - cracking here and there but Lindgren just kept the wall up. Muller started to get some groove, not playing exceptional but his best yet. Honka had a tremendous game getting a goal, assist, 2 PiMs and 2 shots. He played almost 20 minutes.

Dawes and McCarron outplayed Lehkonen, Tatar, Baun and even Domi. Dawes had an especially good game despite being on the fourth line. Koivu finally found himself while playing with Tatar and Dawes. McCarron is looking to take Hyman's spot with Thornton both being able to play Centre as needed.

4.5

The Habs sign backup goalie Yegor Zenko and both the Beast and IceCaps have their first scrimmages. Alexander Sudnitsin rejected seven teams (including the Habs to sign with CKSA Moscow).

Fresh out of Habs camp, both Victor Mete and Alexis Loiseau were a few steps ahead of everyone else in initial physicals with the IceCaps. David Pacan lacks game-fitness despite his skill and Michael McNiven is either tired or possibly feeling down.

In Brampton, the physicals showed Etienne Brodeur and Luke Ripley all fired up while physicians are concerned Kyle and Cavar are not up to the upcoming contests. Matt Boudens is injured in the first scrimmage, knocking him out of the running for the team.

Unlike the IceCaps two 2-2 ties in their scrimmages, there were some blowouts in the Beast's initial games. Guys were flying everywhere and exploiting vulnerabilities whenever possible.

C Mike Cichy and RW Garrett Vermeersch stood above the rest.

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[EHM 2018-09-29c] Exhibition Trois - Sens 3 @ Habs 6

Furiously Eclectic People - Sun, 09/30/2018 - 03:37

McNiven was pulled after twelve minutes (3 goals in 5 shots) and Ryan Ruck finished the game making 15/15 saves.

Valiev and Honka continue to gel. Domi had a stellar game with 2 goals and 2 assists; Gallagher just behind him acquiring 3 points himself. Koivu seems to be having trouble finding linemates that compliment him.

The battle for the remaining spots goes on as Tatar, Lehkonen, Byron and Hyman all had a solid outing.

Habs won 6-3.

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Montreal Canadiens Pre-Season 2018-19

Furiously Eclectic People - Sun, 09/30/2018 - 02:46

Sixty-six players. Whew! That's a lot.

Andrew Shaw and Shea Weber were out with injury and Paul Byron missed some. I believe Byron will be back in top form (with a nice shiny new contract) whereas I doubt Weber will feel 100% until next season or possibly by the post-season if the Habs make it. He's projected to play by December however after injuries and surgery, even though a player gets ice-time, it doesn't mean we can expect his star quality play. Patience is needed to heal so he'll be the superstar again next season.

I'm skeptical that Shaw can make a full recovery and return. His last concussion was really bad and personally I think he should retire instead of risking his neck. He seems like a good guy and has NHL talent but he can't handle the physical aspects of the game. If he returns, it needs to be as a different type of player.

Guys I think are getting a spot no matter what

Danault-Tatar-Gallagher
Domi-Drouin-Lehkonen
Plekanecs-Deslauriers-Hudon
3 open forward spots with a temporary fourth as Deslauriers was injured in Exhibition.

Alzner-Weber
Mete-Juulsen
Schlemko-Petry
Weber is injured so someone else will fill a spot.

Price
Niemi

With all that stated, it's not that I agree, it's just what I expect. As well, Kotkaniemi will at least get his nine games if not the full season considering how much Julien has been praising him. That's the same reason Schlemko is on my list. Sure, he's an okay player but considering Julien's praise, there's no reason to keep him off the list. I'm more likely to be wrong about Juulsen or Mete but I hope not. They're both exciting players.

Players fighting for the leftover spots
- and remember, there are also three floater spots that both Bergevin and Julien seem to like carrying despite it's negative impact on morale.

Defense: Simon Despres, Xavier Ouellet, Mike Reilly, Jordie Benn (in reserve at Laval there will also be capable players like Brett Lernout and Rinat Valiev.
Forward: Joel Armia, Michael Chaput, Jacob De la Rose, Nikita Scherbak, Matthew Peca and of course Jesperi Kotkaniemi (special mention should go to players I just happen to like in Michael Pezzetta, Michael McCarron, Nick Suzuki)
Goalie: It was never in question. Lindgren is good and he's even good enough to play backup or #1 but Price and Niemi are simply the guys who will take it and in fact Niemi will be a very sturdy backup. The real question in nets is Price. Is he healed? Is he ready?

Let's start with defense. Our top six are pretty set but with Weber out we need another and Benn is likely the favourite. No, not because he's the best. No he didn't have a good year last season. No, he didn't have a good camp this year. He didn't even play well in exhibition. I don't think he successfully completed a single pass. When Benn first arrived a couple years ago he was on a mission to prove himself and appeared to be a defensive specialist no one could get around. He also showed that the penalty-kill was like a home he would defend with his life. Then last year happened and he looks worse this year. I don't know what's wrong. Something behind the scenes? It's hard to believe he just became a poor player. I suspect something else however I'd like to see him traded. Despite that, I think he's the favoured player to start in the lineup.

What about the other three? Well one will stay with the team and the other two probably put on waivers. Reilly is an exciting skater who seems to go end to end at will. Despres gives it 100% and looks like a guy who really wants to play. He's solid and makes good decisions. Ouellet is the guy who dives across the ice at the last second to save his team. He also makes good decisions, hits and works hard. Reilly fits best with what Julien says he wants. If it was me, I'd keep Ouellet and Despres, demote Reilly to the Rocket and trade Benn.

My choice:
Alzner-Petry
Mete-Juulsen
Ouellet-Schlemko
Despres
Weber (injured)

What I expect of Julien/Bergevin:
Alzner-Petry
Mete-Juulsen
Reilly-Schlemko
Benn
Weber(injured)

It should be noted that Despres is on a PTO and not signed so he's easy to let go and forget. As well, in my choice it will be very tough to lose a player when Weber comes back whereas in Julien's choice, I think he'll already know. There is also the possibility of one of or neither Juulsen or Mete making the team as they are exempt from waivers however this will negatively impact their development in my opinion and be a mistake. Juulsen is one of the smoothest skaters I've seen in years and Mete has dependable written on his forehead.

Forwards... With Deslauriers out and Kotkaniemi in we have a lineup emerging.

Danault-Tatar-Gallagher
Domi-Drouin-Lehkonen
Kotkaniemi-
Plekanecs-

Hudon will most certainly be in there but whether as a third or fourth line remains to be seen. Before I get going I have a few things to say about three that went to Laval. Pezzetta is exciting and maybe he isn't NHL material yet but I would have liked to see him get more ice-time and attention. He's also a natural centre. Suzuki went back to Junior and while that wasn't a total surprise, the fact that Kotkaniemi was lauded and Suzuki sent packing surprised me a bit. Kotkaniemi may well have talent and even looks like Lehkonen did his first year albeit he plays a much smaller game and is afraid of contact - especially in the corners. I saw him avoid making plays because he didn't want to receive the hit. It's taken Lehkonen three camps to look like he's ready for the NHL. Lehkonen had a fantastic camp but it's his third. It seems like they plan to go that same route with Kotkaniemi. My only issue with it is that Suzuki had a better camp and played better in exhibition. He is right now the better player. In a few years that might change if the analysts were wrong about their placement of Kotkaniemi at the draft where we selected him #3 instead of Brady Tkachuk (who is going to have a stellar career in Ottawa). Lastly, McCarron has been derided by 'fans' for a long time when he fills a niche so badly needed on the team. He has size, plays big, can control the puck and make a good pass. His skating is sub-par but it's also leagues better than it was last year. He was asked to develop that skill and he did. He works hard and deserves a shot centring Tatar and Gallagher.

So, we have four wingers and an extra to add from what's left knowing that when Deslauriers comes back, he's staying and Hudon is taking one of those spots now. So, four more spots total.

Joel Armia hasn't shown me much to stand out. The Habs traded Simon Bourque for him. I didn't see much of Bourque but Armia is an easy risk. He has talent and is willing to work through traffic.

Michael Chaput had a decent camp and sometimes looked pretty good in his exhibition games. He certainly wasn't lazy but looked more like a centre than a winger. He's on the bubble.

Jacob De la Rose seems to be a favourite. I didn't notice much about him in camp so I can't say how that went but his exhibition experience was not especially good. He plays with size and can move opposing players but doesn't show any of the other skills necessary to succeed at the NHL level. He's okay but seems unhappy and unpolished when forced to the wing. He also wants to be at centre and plays better there although probably not as solid and influential as when Froese was there. Froese was one of those players who himself never looked spectacular but made his two wingers into better players. I guess I'm also influenced because I keep hearing about how Jacob is such an amazing player by analysts. They puff him up.

Nikita Scherbak is a big guy who plays a small game. He shows bits of talent but nothing to tell us he's ready for the NHL. He should be effective with the Rocket.

Matthew Peca... He's a tougher egg to crack. Unfortunately he was downed with a groin injury during camp and it's hard to say if it's a chronic thing or not. Prior to the injury he looked like a lock for fourth line centre to me. He was exceptional in that role. His one game back from injury was not. He did play well and hard but also had his pocket picked and made a couple errors in his own zone. He's one I'm rooting for. Once healed, and if he stays hungry, he's the guy.

I forgot to include Agostino above. That is simply because I see him in Laval. As well..... Byron? He limits the choices and makes us a better team. Sorry Paul. You are also an exciting player the Habs need. Byron really can fit anywhere up front and excels the more ice time he gets.

Danault-Tatar-Gallagher
Domi-Drouin-Lehkonen
Kotkaniemi-Hudon-Armia
Plekanec-Chaput-Byron
Peca-De La Rose

I'd rather see De La Rose developing in Laval but I think Julien will keep him. In the least, hopefully he goes down when Deslauriers comes back. I really want tro see Scherbak succeed however I think he needs some more time in the AHL. I'd be happy to be wrong as he has the tools to make it. I just don't think he's quite there yet. If he stays, it's likely at Armia's expense. I also still see a chance for McCarron to rise back up but it depends on how serious Julien is about his new 'system.'

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[EHM 2018-09-29b] Exhibition 2

Furiously Eclectic People - Sat, 09/29/2018 - 18:53

Shipachyov-Deslauriers-Drouin
Hischier-Byron-Gallagher
Thornton-Dawes-Reaves
Koivu-Lehkonen-McCarron
DeSimone-Muller
Sergechev-Hicketts
Honka-Valiev
Price
McNiven

Price got the start against the Flames and had a solid game. We won 5-2 so there was a lot of offence. Muller continues to disappoint although it's hard to tell if he was a bad acquisition or if he just hasn't had time to gel with the time. He'll be given more time but either makes the team as an extra or is traded since we gave up a 2nd round pick to claim him off RFA waivers.

Sergechev excelled while Hicketts and Valiev also played admirably on defense. Honka wasn't great but he's been slotted already to play with Valiev on his off side. It may take a bit for Honka to get used to playing on the left side. It's also open for Valiev and Honka to switch sides.

DeSimone played well making it hard to send him down to the IceCaps however I doubt he'll convince the brass he's ready no matter how well he plays.

All six forwards who are vying for three spots had a chance to play and Lehkonen stepped up as the highest rated player of the game. Unfortunate to decision makers, the rest of the group also played well.

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[EHM 2018-09-29] Exhibition (post-training camp)

Furiously Eclectic People - Sat, 09/29/2018 - 18:48

Things look a little different now.

Shipachyov-Rychel-Dadanov
Hischier-Domi-Gallagher
Thornton-???????-Hyman
Koivu-???????-???????
Lehkonen, Dawes, Byron, Goulet, Reaves, Deslauriers, Baun, Drouin

Sergechev-Weber
Alzner-Green
Honka-Valiev
Ouellet, Hickets

Price
Lindgren/McNiven/Zenko

Goalie Ruck has also just agreed to a contract offered some time ago. Unfortunately for Ruck, because he chose to miss training camp, he'll likely have to prove himself from the farm before getting a chance in the pros. It does add pressure on Zenko though because now he may be sent back to Europe for the year as signing him would leave the Habs with a floater goalie over the three levels (NHL/AHL/ECHL).

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[EHM 2018-09-27] Day 8 Last Day for most Try-Out players

Furiously Eclectic People - Thu, 09/27/2018 - 20:32

Other than prospect Rene Wolf not playing particularly well and Martin Reway getting injured, the final scrimmages of camp were muted. Certainly Zenko was still being praised by the coaching staff but no one really stepped up. Conversely it might have been that everyone played so tightly they didn't let anyone else break out. Each game was either a tie or 1-0.

Head coach Bob Hartley listed Steve Aeschlimann, Jesperi Kotkaniemi, Sergei Matveyev and Rene Wolf as his favourite prospects.

The ones he saw potential but thought needed to step up their game over the next year were Josh Brook, Adam McCormick and Kalevi Honkanen.

Hartley dismissed Kyle Baun to the chagrin of Kersus who's in negotiations to resign the RFA.

There was some debate about Suzuki's potential however and the Habs only have until next June before his rights expire.

Kersus also took to the media praising prospect Alexandre Goulet and even brought him back on an extended tryout. It's unlikely he'll make the team this year but Kersus wanted him to feel part of the team in preparation for a breakout year next time. He also mentioned that Sergei Matveyev has not lived up to expectations and needs a better off-season next year to make the team.

Scrimmages:

Highest rating in Scrimmages:
G Yegor Zenko,
F Kerby Rychel,
D Mike Green

Worst rating in Scrimmages:
G Lars Haugen,
D Simon Bourque,
F Sergei Matveyev

Positive Scrimmage surprises:
F Nicolas Deslauriers,
F Zach Hyman,
D Rinat Valiev,
F Martin Reway,
D Nick DeSimone

Negative Scrimmage surprises:
D Noah Juulsen,
F Zach Poirier,
D Simon Kindschi,
F Brendan Gallagher,
D Victor Mete,
D Alexei Bereglazov,
F Nico Hichier,
F Michael Pezzetta

So far in Exhibition games (# of games played):

Highest rating in Exhibition Games so far:
G Alexandar Georgiyev(2),
F Max Domi(6),
F Martin Reway(1),
F Kerby Rychel(4),
D Shea Weber(6)

Worst rating in Exhibition games so far:
G Lars Haugen,
F Lukas Vejdemo,
D Mirco Muller

Positive Exhibition surprises:
F Michael McCarron,
F Alexandre Goulet

Negative Exhibition surprises:
F Jesperi Kotkaniemi,
F Mikko Koivu,
D Alexei Bereglazov,
D Victor Mete

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HackMoor 2018/09/20 No Quorum, Worst Version of Axis & Allies Ever

Furiously Eclectic People - Thu, 09/27/2018 - 14:54

Games are on Thursday nights sometime after 6:30PM at World's Best Comics, 9714 Warwick Blvd Newport News, Virginia 23601.

We had a mushroom and hamburger pizza, it was pretty bad. If that was any indication of the what was to come, I would have left right then and there.

The previous session was cancelled due to my evacuation from Hurricane Florence. Although it turned out it didn't hit my area after all.

PART 1.

++++ START OF SESSION ++++

We did not have a quorum with only three Players, so I pulled out two boardgames sitting in my car, Axis & Allies classic (1984) and Axis & Allies 1942, 2nd Edition. Then I called one of my Sons who won't play HackMaster, but is willing to play anything else. Bringing myself out of GM mode, that made 5 Players. I then submitted we play one of the two games and put it up for debate.

I heard nothing but a glowing review from one Player about the new version, stating that the unit density is lower and can be played in about an hour or so. He also brought in one of his kids with the expectation he had to leave early. Another Player said he hadn't played any version in over a decade. So the only favorable opinion was for the new version, so we tried that.

We opened the box and yes, the map was different than the classic. The main thing was that they printed satellite view "terrain" style on the global map using mainly dark colors and small print for territories. The player aid cards were also in small print. Coupled that one of the flourescent bulbs in the room was out it made for a fairly dim experience. A couple of us turned on flashlights on our keychains to look at various items on the board. The map also seemed smaller.

That should have been my first clue.

After set up we started playing, next thing we noticed was that the board was "crowded" and we could not tell one territory from another due to the pieces. A good thing the original had were cut outs of areas on the edge of the board to put your pieces in for small territories. I missed that. They also eliminated money, instead relying on players to constantly audit their Victory Point track on the map. (Which was another thing, the old system had a separate board to keep track of victory progress and thus away from roving hands, cuffs and elbows.) In the old system you had a fistful of money, if you lost money but no territories changed hands and remained static, you can simply look at the numeric position of your piece and collect a new Turn's funds. Also if you have money left over from a previous turn, you now have to remember the Delta. Thus the Victory Point track was a lively area of the board instead of only when territories changed hands. (Or we could have used double-entry bookkeeping with two tokens on the Victory Point Track, but there would be no way to note which token was which.)

So a half-hour into the game, the Player who recommended this version because it was shorter to play, stated he had to leave in a half hour. He also apologized, noting that this was an even "different" version than the "new" version he was accustomed.

Operationally, the Japanese Player did not perform a single attack, thus delaying the timeline in favor of the Allies.

So we completed two turns and did not get far.

++++ OUT OF CHEESE ERROR ++++

BT

BBBB

PART 2.

++++ CHARACTER ROSTER ++++

[Omitted due to lack of HackMaster this session]

++++ RECORD KEEPING ++++

PART 3.

This is also posted on three forums, and a blog.



--

Tracy Johnson
Old fashioned text games hosted below:

BT

NNNN

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[EHM 2018-09-26] Training Camp Days 3-7

Furiously Eclectic People - Wed, 09/26/2018 - 17:30

Nothing super eventful despite a scrimmage and a few exhibition games. Zenko and Georgiyev have showed up to vie for a positions in nets. Three of the six defense positions are now up for grabs with Weber, Alzner and Green holding theirs but Juulsen and Mete being completely outplayed by other postential candidates leaving Sergechev in the middle.

Rychel has been ruling the camp and seems to be riding his success from last year and still trying to take his game to a higher level. Zach Hyman has been a bit of a surprise. He was invited to camp at the last minute as there was some space simply to gear him up for IceCaps camp however he's shown some chemistry with Thornton and picked up the best scrimmage ratings on the team; all while nursing a groin injury.

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[EHM 2018-09-25] Training Camp Day 2

Furiously Eclectic People - Tue, 09/25/2018 - 23:45

With Zenko really turning heads in nets, Dawes, Reway, McCormick and DiSimone also had a good day with Ranger, Juulsen, Bourque and Haugen looking quite poor.

McCormick has his work cut out for him to beat out favourites Sergechev and Mete although there are rumours that Sergechev is secretly on the trade block. Zenko is making it look like Lindgren AND Haugen will be playing in the AHL but the coaching staff will also have to decide where Zenko will develop best. Ranger and Bourque not shining is no real surprise. Bourque turned heads at his first camp, but almost wasn't invited to this, his third camp. Once a promising prospect, he's pretty much labeled a middle AHL or top ECHL defenseman for his career. Ranger was brought in simply to see if it will give him some jump at the IceCaps camp in a couple weeks. Juulsen is surprising everyone by not shining.

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[EHM 2018-09-24] Training Camp 1

Furiously Eclectic People - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 16:52

Day 1

No surprise out of the gates that Price and Weber were cheered by the peanut gallery while Broll and McNiven were derided. In the first scrimmage, Yamamoto suffered an injury that pretty much ruined his chances at making the team this year. A promising prospect that will have to prove himself this year in the WHL or he might get buried.

Shipachyov, Hyman, Byron, Rychel, Green and Suzuki all looked good in those first scrimmages while Pezzetta, Matveyev and Luukkonen seemed like cold fish out of water.

With Yamamoto out, there are now only 6 players vying for 3 contested spots with 5 outliers that could possibly spoil someone.

On the side, Beast veteran centreman Castonuguay was injured for the length of training camp in an exhibition match probably due to a lack of players currently available for the Beast to ice.

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[2018-09-22] EHM 2018 Leadup to Camp

Furiously Eclectic People - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 15:29

Leading up to 2018 Training Camp:

While Price is barring injury or trade, his backup is likely between Lars Haugen and Charlie Lindgren. Drafted prospects Zenko and especially Georgiyev have been impressive in training leading up to camp though so time will tell. McNiven is also at camp but projects to start with the Beast again this year and Luukkonen is playing in an international tournament missing a couple days of camp.

On defense we expect Weber to stay with the most minutes but his partner is up for grabs. It's expected Alzner will either play with Green or Juulsen with Sergechev taking whichever spot Alzner doesn't have. With Weber the favourite is Mete. Bereglazov and Honka will be fighting for the reserve D spot while Kindschi, McCormick, Ouellet, Wolf, Brook, Hicketts, Nother, Tuukanen (also missing a couple days for a European tournament) and Valiev are just here for the experience. Hicketts has been impressive in the lead-up training.

The expected lineup on foreward has changed dramatically with Thornton's ability declining so much in the off-season. While his experience is invaluable, consultants list him as unworthy for a spot on the team. Hishier has also not developed as much as expected despite winning the Calder and may lose his place on the top line.

Shipachyov-Rychel/Byron-Dadanov
Hischier-Dawes/Lehkonen-Gallagher
Koivu-Tatar-Reaves/McCarron/Yamamoto
Thornton-Domi-Drouin
Danault-Deslauriers/Aeschlimann/Goulet-Baun

That gives you an idea going in where player's may slide in however Lehkonen has shown he can play either wing and Dawes seems to only play well on the top two lines. Byron is good but Rychel looks better so far. Many other forwards are here for the experience but I wouldn't count out Hudon, Matveyev or Suzuki. Suzuki has already shown some chemistry with Rychel and Dadanov. Hudon is desperate for a spot after playing in Europe for a few years but is projected to play with the IceCaps. Matveyev looks good on paper but I haven't seen him play with the big boys yet. Kotkaniemi does not look ready for camp. A few players are also here to work on skills before the AHL/ECHL camps like Alexandre Ranger, Alexis Loiseau and David Broll.

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[2018-09-21] EHM Off Season 2018 Retrospective

Furiously Eclectic People - Fri, 09/21/2018 - 20:50

It's a new season for Kersus' EHM Montreal Canadiens. Some things look the same and others look different.

Price still sits as the undisputed goalie however everything after him is very much disputed.

This is Kersus third year at the helm. His first year was a disaster and he attempted a huge rebuild while losing a battle out of the basement. With some maneuvering at the draft he was able to snag Nico Hischier. Some good Free Agency acquisitions saw the Habs shock everyone to top the league and win the Cup in his second year. Now expectations are high for a repeat.
The Cup winning lineup was as follows:

C-LW-RW
Hischier-Pacioretty-Gallagher
Thornton-Rychel-Dadanov
Shipachyov-Galchenyuk-Dawes
Drouin-Byron-Raffl
LD-RD
Taormina-Weber
Daley-Klein
Alzner-Davidson
G
Price
Fucale (sometimes McNiven in the playoffs)
Scratches - Marleau, Kozun, Lehkonen (all switched in and out with the third or fourth line) however Dawes only came in during the playoffs as that was when his previous contract ended.

While the defense remained basically the same people, Weber was the only player to consistently play the same spot. All five other defensemen moved around him. Daley was a bit of a disappointment (brought in mid-January in exchange for Condon and Benn who went to the Penguins) but still played well. Alzner was a steadying influence if nothing spectacular. Davidson filled a hole well on the second line but was outplayed by another as time wore on. Taormina periodically performed like a star and other times like he belonged in the AHL but overall exceeded expectations. Klein as well exceeded expectations; starting in the AHL he came up later in the season to not only claim a spot on the pro roster (from Jerabek) but to cement himself as a second behind Weber despite Kersus positioning him as an extra. This caused a rift between Klein and Kersus where at the end of the season, Klein was willing to remain unsigned instead of even talk with Kersus about a new contract.

As for forwards, Shipachyov started as RW on the top line and ended up centering the 3rd or 4th line. This may sound like a demotion for Ship however he struggled to Centre his own line all season and only in the end and during the playoffs did he show he could fill a needed Centre position while Gallagher went from 4th line to 1st; finally gelling with Pacioretty again as no one else really could. Drouin was a disappointment all season and even winning the Cup he was a fringe player. Thornton was a key player and helped Rychel step up his game and even reclaimed Dadanov as a premiere player. While Weber wore the C, Thornton was sensational.

Lehkonen continued to improve despite often having his minutes limited. Marleau may have brought some leadership to the dressing room however he never found a place that fit on the ice - performing poorly all season. To some degree that was also Galchenyuk's problem. Not that he had any leadership but he couldn't gel with the other players and floundered from position to position. Michael Raffl was a late claim off waivers who took over for poor Teddy Purcell. Purcell was a solid reserve forward however when Raffl became available there was no longer any space for Purcell who didn't get claimed off waivers and didn't even get play-time on the farm. There were a lot of sad feelings about that situation however Raffl was a good pickup and able to perform better than Purcell. Kozun was a solid fourth liner who played the bulk of the games during the season. Byron may have played the final game where the Habs won the cup but he spent most of the season with the Brampton Beast and then the St. John's IceCaps in the playoffs.

Price did okay and Fucale was admirable as a young backup. Poulin, McNiven, Lindgren and MacIntyre all played between the AHL and ECHL. Other temporary goalies like Kuhn and Caron came in when injuries occurred. Poulin was admirable and solid, McNiven probably played a little above himself because of the good players around him however his own abilities seem stunted. Lindgren showed that he has the talent however he would get tired, injured and make poor decisions later in a game. MacIntyre played the season with the Beast (ECHL) on a tryout contract and impressed all observers despite getting few games behind McNiven. He was offered ridiculous amounts of money to have a shot with the Habs but perhaps the offers came too late and he went to Switzerland.

The Habs AHL affiliate lost the league finals in game seven to the Checkers and Nikolai Goldobin was the fan-favourite player.

In the ECHL the Brampton Beast absolutely dominated the Alaska Aces to win the Kelly Cup. Chase Nieuwendyk, a try-out player, was the fan-favourite; Baker was the defenseman of the year and held the +/- record; Addison won the sportsmanship award and all-star MVP; Boni as coach of the year (two years running); D'Agostini was the playoff MVP.

Max Pacioretty was the fan-favourite with the Habs and made the first all star team. Hischier and Lehkonen making the rookie all-star team with the former taking the Calder. Drouin ballet hopped to the Lady Byng and Bob Hartley, for good reason, won the Jack Adams. Price took the Conn Smythe with Shipachyov on his heels.

Ship started slow and took all season to find his way in the North American game, but once he did... Wow.

I don't think enough can be said on how Rychel flourished while playing with Big Joe Thornton and Flashy Dadanov. This line got better and better, taking an AHL player and making him into the star of many games. This isn't to take away from Rychel's potential however he's now an example of how to develop a player properly. This stands out with a franchise that's blown many prospects from poor development.

Off-Season
F Shumakov was traded to Detroit for D Ouellet.
The rights to G Skinner, 3rd and 5th picks to Philly for the rights to Cody Ceci.
Prospect C Mattila to Tampa for prospect C Suzuki.
F Pacioretty to Detroit along with a 7th pick 2023 for F Tatar, D Hickets, 1st and 2nd picks 2019.
F Raffl and F Friberg to Vancouver for D Cederholm.
D Ceci to Dallas for D Honka and 2nd pick 2019.
C Bradley to Capitals for C Kotkaniemi
C Galchenyuk to Phoenix for LW Domi
Prospect Staum with 5th and 6th picks to Blue Jackets for prospect Kindschi and 7th pick.
FA Signings: Reaves, Koivu, Green, Bereglazov, Haugen
Released: Davidson, Klein, Taormina, Daley, Fucale, Poulin, Greening, Redmond, Martinsen, Purcell, Marleau, Kozun, Hrabarenka

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HackMoor 2018/09/06 Raising of Grok and Honda, Battle, and GM Craziness

Furiously Eclectic People - Sat, 09/08/2018 - 18:47

Games are on Thursday nights sometime after 6:30PM at World's Best Comics, 9714 Warwick Blvd Newport News, Virginia 23601.

We had a split half sausage, half pepperoni pizza.

PART 1.

++++ START OF SESSION ++++

The evening started out as planned. I fully expected the players to bring their "Raise Dead" player cards which they did, well "Minor Raise Dead" cards which earned them two flaws each. So we went through the rigmarole of rolling their flaws.

Ninety minutes later, as we ate our pizza at the same time.

Then came the mitigation of these selfsame flaws. Hitting upon the prior offer of 15 Player Cards for a Wish one player took that option. (Reminding me I had to up the ante by stating a second wish will cost them 30 cards. I think its a good plan, and prevents hoarding of cards.)

I had the Player write down the Wish properly. Upon receipt I had to declare that half the Wish was null and void. As the Player had written two wishes and forgot to connect them with an "and" clause. The first half of the Wish was to remove all the new flaws. The next half asked for +5 weapons and armor for everyone. Anyway, the wisher chose to remove the flaws. Besides I told them, saying "everyone" would have given +5 weapons and armor to their enemies also. (I used the example from Bruce Almighty where everyone wins the lottery.)

Then a Player who was game wealthy simply offered to "buy" everyone these weapons. (He should have mentioned this earlier and saved us the trouble.)

Into the second hour we finally started fighting the battle with the monsters reported arriving at the end of last game, 10 Hell Hounds, 5 Trolls, and 2 Fire Giants.

One early outcome of the battle was the Party's set of 5 Hell Hounds were released to meet the other 10 Hell Hounds. Both sets of Hell Hounds promptly set to sniffing each others asses and nullified half the 10 Hell Hounds by doing whatever lonely Hell Hounds do.

The Fire Giants were content to throw boulders from the back and let the remaining Hell Hounds and Trolls perform the charge of the Light Brigade.

All went well, Hell Hounds were dying, Trolls were dying as much as they're able. (It was declared they'd be burned later before they could fully regenerate.)

Lastly, one lucky Troll rolled a natural 20 to hit on Jacko, Thus by convention should be a critical hit. Jacko said that wasn't so and we argued, his point his armor class was so good that a natural 20 as a critical hit wasn't a critical hit. Citing some rule that I think was from a lesser product.

I cited the rule that says "Any time a character rolls a natural 20 on his to hit rolls, he scores a critical hit."

Then the player countered that a monster is not a character, it only applies to characters.

Aaaaaaaaaagghhhhhh!

Being told a critical hit isn't a critical hit made me lose it. So I said I'd had enough and declared "game over".

Shortly thereafter Player corrected himself a bit later as he a rule that said otherwise. (I haven't found that rule as of press time, but I'm sure it's there somewhere.)

It was late anyway.

The game was not over, and only shut down for the night, it was all good.

++++ OUT OF CHEESE ERROR ++++

BT

BBBB

PART 2.

++++ CHARACTER ROSTER ++++

CHARACTERS
Zamon, a fifth level Thug.
Grok the Dwarf, a third level WitchRanger (Battlemage subclass of Magic User).
Aerys, an Elvariel, a Fingersmith (Thief class).
Baronet Huang - a Master of the West Wind of the Stone Tiger Order, (Monk class).
Numrendir - a human Conjurist (a Conjuror, Magic User subclass)
Junkbot Jackson - a human Tracker/Friar (a Ranger 5th and Cleric 6th level).
Jacko, an Albino Dork Elf, a Multiclass (Infiltrator, Ranger and Battle Mage).
Serena 2.0 - First Level Battle Mage Second (a Protege of Jacko).

NPCs/Proteges:
Baronetess Honda - a Human Datai Samurai, Steward of Catan (formerly Temple of the Frog)
Gnomex, a Gnome Adept of Geardal Ironhand (Cleric class.)
Tanzen - a Fae-Born first level Exciter. (Fourth level Invoker, a Magic User subclass).
Fundisha - a half-Elf Swordsperson/Tout (Fighter and Infiltrator, a Thief subclass).

CAPTURED CHARACTERS (both PCs and NPCs)
Gerry Castagere, human Fingersmith, (Thief class) and ever loving devotee of Elefus, abandoned to the Blood Cult in the City of Brass on the Plane of Fire.

MISSING/OFFLINE/RETIRED CHARACTERS
Count Elefus, a human Abbot of Heimdall (Cleric class). RETIRED
Felipe the Dwarf, a third level Sigil (Chosen One subclass of Cleric).
Sir Weasel, human Guild Soldier, Warlock, & Champion (Thief, Magic User, & Fighter classes) he stayed back in BlackMoor.
- and nine Pilgrim henchmen of various levels. (They wear hoodies.)
Slade Wilson - Dwarven Professional (a Bounty Hunter, Fighter subclass) Left behind at Catan.

BT

BBBB

++++ RECORD KEEPING ++++

PART 3.

This is also posted on three forums, and a blog.



--

Tracy Johnson
Old fashioned text games hosted below:

BT

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HackMoor 2018/08/30 Alt-Grok and Honda Fall

Furiously Eclectic People - Tue, 09/04/2018 - 00:49

Games are on Thursday nights sometime after 6:30PM at World's Best Comics, 9714 Warwick Blvd Newport News, Virginia 23601.

We had an extra large meat lover's pizza, rather than remove pepperoni for our intransigent pepperoni hater, I had them put the pepperoni only on one half of it.

PART 1.

++++ START OF SESSION ++++

Disclaimer, due to separation of party members by event sequencing, there are unreported elements of this session.

While the Wish is still being worked on, it entails retrofitting Jacko to be a maximized multiclass, which I view as no big deal.

The party was still in the mushroom forest following the trail of the thief who stole their most precious magic items. I explained the trail got dusted over after the last battle with the Roper and the party had found two exits the one leading to the Roper and the one they had skipped.

Meanwhile I introduced the new Player as character Zamon, a fifth level Thug that happens to be a survivor from last year's Blackmoor Dungeon Festival. If you recall the summary from two weeks ago I had introduced him after the Roper's battle had dusted over the tracks they were following. No, his tracks were not the same tracks. This did not prevent Jacko from shooting him in the back on first discovery, a second time even while in the surrender posture. Having confirmed Zamon was not the thief they were looking for, he was allowed to join the party. And of course this was before the Battle with the Ettin at the other entrance/exit.

Also as a side note unreported last week. The Party encountered 4 random Hell Hounds but they recognized Zamon as they had all been living in the mushroom forest for over a year, and were kept as his pets.

(Based on the map that went with the adventure, these exits were 80 feet wide. A copy provided with this post. This map includes the previous encounter and battle with the Pyrohydra and Minotaur Lizards.)

Aerys decided to scout out the beyond the entrance. She flew out overhead

Meanwhile the new character Zamon, volunteered to do the same thing and went the same way on foot.

Aerys returned and reported back that the path branched out in two directions. One path led to a 400 foot waterfall, the other led to a warm water mineral pool. AND that she decided to go to the mineral pool and take a bath. So she grabbed her soap and a towel and flew back.

Zamon was still out.

While the party was waiting, Aery's to bathe, the rest of the Party were surprised by an attack by three Spirit Nagas. They appeared out of nowhere, giving up their invisibility spell to strike. Being smarter than most monsters, the Nagas skipped the two dozen dwarves and went straight to the Party's central core. Deciding randomly they struck Huang, Honda, and Grok. (We didn't have a playing piece for Grok because his Player was absent. However I had and unpainted but primed exact duplicate, for this purpose, we call him Alt-Grok.)

Since these were surprise attacks. The monsters struck first. The one that struck Huang hit, but Huang is immune to poison and was saved. Alt-Grok was struck next and he failed his saving throw, dying immediately as was Honda.

Honda's Player announced that Honda was not dead, and that he was going to play a card. (These are the Official HackMaster cards that give Player's benefits such as a free Raise Dead or something as mundane as .25 Intelligence increase, or removing a trap.)

So I asked, "Where's the card?"

The Player says "It's at home. But it doesn't matter, I'll bring the card next week."

"Yes it does."

Then another Player assisted by saying: "That's like having a flat tire and saying not to worry, only to find out you left your spare tire at home."

So I deferred. Noting that if Honda gets raised from the dead, it will have to occur next session. Knowing there was another encounter coming.

Meanwhile Splish, splash, while Aery's was taking a bath.

Otherwise the Party defeated the Spirit Nagas. The one that failed on Honda realized its mistake and went for the next character in line, Jacko and nearly broke a tooth. The Party got its return strikes and defeated the three Nagas before they could kill anyone else.

After the battle Zamon returned reporting the same thing about the split path.

As he was making his report, creatures were approaching from the same entrance that Aerys and Zamon had just scouted. 10 Hell-Hounds, 5 Trolls, 2 Fire Giants, (you could almost add a Partridge in a Pear tree.)

And no, these Hell Hounds are not the same clan as Zamon's Hell Hounds.

I declared this battle will be fought next week.

++++ OUT OF CHEESE ERROR ++++

BT

BBBB

PART 2.

++++ CHARACTER ROSTER ++++

CHARACTERS
Zamon, a fifth level Thug.
Grok the Dwarf, a third level WitchRanger (Battlemage subclass of Magic User).
Aerys, an Elvariel, a Fingersmith (Thief class).
Baronet Huang - a Master of the West Wind of the Stone Tiger Order, (Monk class).
Numrendir - a human Conjurist (a Conjuror, Magic User subclass)
Junkbot Jackson - a human Tracker/Friar (a Ranger 5th and Cleric 6th level).
Jacko, an Albino Dork Elf, a Master Espion (Infiltrator, subclass of Thief).
Serena 2.0 - First Level Battle Mage Second (a Protege of Jacko).

NPCs/Proteges:
Baronetess Honda - a Human Datai Samurai, Steward of Catan (formerly Temple of the Frog)
Gnomex, a Gnome Adept of Geardal Ironhand (Cleric class.)
Tanzen - a Fae-Born first level Exciter. (Fourth level Invoker, a Magic User subclass).
Fundisha - a half-Elf Swordsperson/Tout (Fighter and Infiltrator, a Thief subclass).

CAPTURED CHARACTERS (both PCs and NPCs)
Gerry Castagere, human Fingersmith, (Thief class) and ever loving devotee of Elefus, abandoned to the Blood Cult in the City of Brass on the Plane of Fire.

MISSING/OFFLINE/RETIRED CHARACTERS
Count Elefus, a human Abbot of Heimdall (Cleric class). RETIRED
Felipe the Dwarf, a third level Sigil (Chosen One subclass of Cleric).
Sir Weasel, human Guild Soldier, Warlock, & Champion (Thief, Magic User, & Fighter classes) he stayed back in BlackMoor.
- and nine Pilgrim henchmen of various levels. (They wear hoodies.)
Slade Wilson - Dwarven Professional (a Bounty Hunter, Fighter subclass) Left behind at Catan.

BT

BBBB

++++ RECORD KEEPING ++++

PART 3.

This is also posted on three forums, and a blog.



--

Tracy Johnson
Old fashioned text games hosted below:

BT

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HackMaster 2018/08/23 Offing an Ettin named Marc (short)

Furiously Eclectic People - Thu, 08/30/2018 - 20:17

​Games are on Thursday nights sometime after 6:30PM at World's Best Comics, 9714 Warwick Blvd Newport News, Virginia 23601.

​We had an extra large meat lover's pizza, rather than remove pepperoni for our intransigent pepperoni hater, I had them put the pepperoni only on one half of it.

PART 1.

++++ START OF SESSION ++++

We continued building the returning Player's character and had only time for one encounter afterwards. It was an Ettin named Marc Bolan to which they promptly dispatched both heads. It was a guard Ettin, whose only job was to sound an alarm in the case of intruders. They killed it so quickly the only chance it has was the possibility it would hit the gong on its death fall. Since there are 8 facings in any combat I judged it's head would bang a gong if I rolled a one. It did not however, get it on.

​One item of note, since I was short of Player cards I offered a Wish for anyone turning in fifteen of them.​ Jacko promptly took advantage of it.

The wish is still being worked on.

++++ OUT OF CHEESE ERROR ++++

BT

BBBB

PART 2.

++++ CHARACTER ROSTER ++++

CHARACTERS
Grok the Dwarf, a third level WitchRanger (Battlemage subclass of Magic User).
Aerys, an Elvariel, a Fingersmith (Thief class).
Baronet Huang - a Master of the West Wind of the Stone Tiger Order, (Monk class).
Numrendir - a human Conjurist (a Conjuror, Magic User subclass)
Junkbot Jackson - a human Tracker/Friar (a Ranger 5th and Cleric 6th level).
Jacko, an Albino Dork Elf, a Master Espion (Infiltrator, subclass of Thief).
Serena 2.0 - First Level Battle Mage Second (a Protege of Jacko).

NPCs/Proteges:
Baronetess Honda - a Human Datai Samurai, Steward of Catan (formerly Temple of the Frog)
Gnomex, a Gnome Adept of Geardal Ironhand (Cleric class.)
Tanzen - a Fae-Born first level Exciter. (Fourth level Invoker, a Magic User subclass).
Fundisha - a half-Elf Swordsperson/Tout (Fighter and Infiltrator, a Thief subclass).

CAPTURED CHARACTERS (both PCs and NPCs)
Gerry Castagere, human Fingersmith, (Thief class) and ever loving devotee of Elefus, abandoned to the Blood Cult in the City of Brass on the Plane of Fire.

MISSING/OFFLINE/RETIRED CHARACTERS
Count Elefus, a human Abbot of Heimdall (Cleric class). RETIRED
Felipe the Dwarf, a third level Sigil (Chosen One subclass of Cleric).
Sir Weasel, human Guild Soldier, Warlock, & Champion (Thief, Magic User, & Fighter classes) he stayed back in BlackMoor.
- and nine Pilgrim henchmen of various levels. (They wear hoodies.)
Slade Wilson - Dwarven Professional (a Bounty Hunter, Fighter subclass) Left behind at Catan.

BT

BBBB

++++ RECORD KEEPING ++++

PART 3.

This is also posted on three forums, and a blog.



--

Tracy Johnson
Old fashioned text games hosted below:

BT

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HackMoor 2018/08/16 The Return of a Player

Furiously Eclectic People - Thu, 08/23/2018 - 02:11

​Games are on Thursday nights sometime after 6:30PM at World's Best Comics, 9714 Warwick Blvd Newport News, Virginia 23601.

We had a large ​sausage pizza.

PART 1.

++++ START OF SESSION ++++

​The party continued to pursue the tracks in the mushroom forest​ and found two major exits. Because the map showed eighty foot wide squares, and the exits were one square wide, it left a lot of room for latitude to exit the forest. The tracks of however skirted the first exit they found led them to the next.

When the tracks led to the next exit the party lead, Jacko was attacked by a Roper. (Essentially it looks like stalagmite or tree trunk with tentacles and a mouth.)

He overcame it easily, it even hit once, but Jacko made his Saving Throw vs. Poison.

At that point a player walked in and re-introduced himself. He had left my game many years ago, even before I changed venue to World's Best Comics.

He was completely unrecognizable. He had lost 185 pounds and sported a beard.

In any case we dropped everything and commenced his rolling up of a new character. He rolled up a Thief archetype, subtype still to be determined. We used the GriftMaster's guide to determine Urchin days and learned the following:

- He was Lower Upper Class

- His father was alive but his mother was not.

- His reason for becoming a Rogue was that he was misunderstood as a kid. He rebelled against everything and everyone. Though he had no particular yearning for the roguish life, he followed it just to spite his parents.

- His character served 6 months jail time for vagrancy where he met and experience criminal who introduced him to the "trade". However, his advice was tainted by the fact that he, too, was in jail.

- After getting out of jail, he displayed enough promise (and coin) to enter a local guild for training. There he learned the fine arts of his class, and got to hobnob with the finest members of his profession. His mentor was the best of the best. Not only did he teach him all the basic and advanced techniques, but he also passed on lessons from his years of experience, and gave excellent hands-on examples. His mentor's knowledge of the street was only average however, having spent some time as a freelancer and as part of an adventuring Party, knew how to get things done. Even so, his training was top-notch, his mentor made sure he was well prepared, thus gaining the ability to backstab two levels higher. (Sounds like people at my work.) He also gained a plus 10% on all musical skills. and a free weapon proficiency.

- His training was not without some drawbacks, he later served two more stints in jail once for 6 months and once for 3 months. The former included a month in solitary having been accused of stealing bed sheets, so he was placed there without a ball or any other form of amusement and developed agoraphobia. During his latter internment he was forced to juggle rocks for the guards to entertain them. When he dropped one, they'd throw it his head and he now suffers from short term memory loss. But he gained the juggling skill and four rolls on the Mastery die.

We then had to conclude for the night and my returning Player's character generation will resume next session.

++++ OUT OF CHEESE ERROR ++++

BT

BBBB

PART 2.

++++ CHARACTER ROSTER ++++

CHARACTERS
Grok the Dwarf, a third level WitchRanger (Battlemage subclass of Magic User).
Aerys, an Elvariel, a Fingersmith (Thief class).
Baronet Huang - a Master of the West Wind of the Stone Tiger Order, (Monk class).
Numrendir - a human Conjurist (a Conjuror, Magic User subclass)
Junkbot Jackson - a human Tracker/Friar (a Ranger 5th and Cleric 6th level).
Jacko, an Albino Dork Elf, a Master Espion (Infiltrator, subclass of Thief).
Serena 2.0 - First Level Battle Mage Second (a Protege of Jacko).

NPCs/Proteges:
Baronetess Honda - a Human Datai Samurai, Steward of Catan (formerly Temple of the Frog)
Gnomex, a Gnome Adept of Geardal Ironhand (Cleric class.)
Tanzen - a Fae-Born first level Exciter. (Fourth level Invoker, a Magic User subclass).
Fundisha - a half-Elf Swordsperson/Tout (Fighter and Infiltrator, a Thief subclass).

CAPTURED CHARACTERS (both PCs and NPCs)
Gerry Castagere, human Fingersmith, (Thief class) and ever loving devotee of Elefus, abandoned to the Blood Cult in the City of Brass on the Plane of Fire.

MISSING/OFFLINE/RETIRED CHARACTERS
Count Elefus, a human Abbot of Heimdall (Cleric class). RETIRED
Felipe the Dwarf, a third level Sigil (Chosen One subclass of Cleric).
Sir Weasel, human Guild Soldier, Warlock, & Champion (Thief, Magic User, & Fighter classes) he stayed back in BlackMoor.
- and nine Pilgrim henchmen of various levels. (They wear hoodies.)
Slade Wilson - Dwarven Professional (a Bounty Hunter, Fighter subclass) Left behind at Catan.

BT

BBBB

++++ RECORD KEEPING ++++

PART 3.

This is also posted on three forums, and a blog.



--

Tracy Johnson
Old fashioned text games hosted below:

BT

NNNN

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A Sense of Ownership

The Rational Man - Tue, 08/21/2018 - 03:33

When I was studying behavioral psychology there was a point when I came across this phenomenon called the Endowment Effect. A friend showed me this video recently and it reminded me of when I’d studied it.

It’s really fascinating how early our sense of ownership develops. There is a school of thought (one I happen to agree with) that this need for ownership is an innate part of out psychological firmware – it’s something we’re born with. We value things more highly once we believe we own something. It makes perfect sense that this would a selected-for part of our evolution. Individuals that possessed this Endowment Effect, theoretically, might have been more adaptable to their surroundings by having something on hand that would aid in their survival at the cost of a competitor. For early man this was likely to be physical tools, but this Endowment Effect would also extend to our progeny and long-term female partners – more on this later.

By extension, our belongings literally become a part of us. This is observable even on a neurological level. Furthermore, our belongings have an essence that becomes unique to us. In other words, we wont settle for (even exact) imitations of our stuff even when they are exact duplicates.

As you might expect from a TED video, the bias towards making this ownership dynamic one of being a bug, rather of a feature, of human development is evident. The new-agey narrative goes like this – if we’re ever to reach the utopian state of egalitarian equalism the Village would have us believe in, we need to somehow unlearn this innate Endowment Effect we evolved to hold. This anti-materialist sentiment is part of a larger socialist/collectivist message that seeks to disempower us by convincing us that this connection to our things is innately bad. Issues of socialism, communism, collectivism, capitalism, etc. are beyond the scope of this blog, but it’s important to consider the drive behind this ‘anti-materialism’ push and how it affects our sense of ownership in intersexual dynamics.

I think it’s interesting that we have a part of our psyches that evolved for ownership; a part of our nature that is decidedly unegalitarian.

If you’re ever read Dawkin’s book, The Selfish Gene, you kind of get a clearer picture of it. Selfish, self-concerned, organisms tend to survive better than overly altruistic or egalitarian ones. Now before you tell me, “On no Rollo, Bonobos are the peacenik, free loving hippy example of egalitarianism in the wild” have a read of The Naked Bonobo and you’ll understand how deliberately false that impression is. If anything Bonobos are far better examples of the more visceral side of Hypergamy in humans. Self-interest is the driver of a great many survival instincts and adaptations in all animals.

Getting back to humans here, combine that evolved, adaptive, selfishness with a hindbrain level, intrinsic sense for ownership – one in which we feel as if it has a direct connection to ourselves – and you can see what social constructivists and equalitarians are trying to undo in humans. If you watch today’s video you’ll better understand this deep connection we have with the things we, selfishly, consider our own. There is a neurological connection between our sense of self and our things.

I’ve mentioned the concept of ego-investment in our belief systems many times throughout my past essays. Briefly, ego-investment is phenomenon of being so intrinsically connected with our beliefs and ideologies that they become part of our personalities. So, to attack the belief is to, literally, attack the person. In a similar fashion the connections we apply to our things also become (to varying degrees) part of who we are. In essence we invest our egos into the things we consider ours – and the greater the effort, cost or the applied significance involved in getting those things the greater the injury is to the self when they are lost, destroyed, damaged or stolen.

In the video there is also a mention of how original items are more valued than an exact copy of those items. Again, this is part of the evolutionary side of humans investing their egos into those things. There is a limbic level need to know that these items are our things because only those things somehow contain the essence of us. Also in the video it’s postulated that the higher price of common items owned by celebrities we admire are a cost we’re willing to pay because we believe part of that celebrity’s essence is somehow contained in that item.

Why is it that we evolved to place such importance in knowing that some thing is ours, and only that thing is ours? Why do we, sometimes obsessively, need to imbue that thing with the essence of us? Why is this (apparently) part of our evolved mental firmware?

The Need to Know

I’m going to speculate here a bit. I think a strong argument can be made for men’s intrinsic need to verify his own paternity being linked to the Endowment Effect. In fact, I’d suggest that this ownership need can extend to not only a man’s children, but also to the women (even potential women) in his life. This isn’t to say women didn’t also evolve this sense – women display the Endowment Effect as much as men – but I’m going to approach this from the male side for the moment.

The video refers to this compulsive need to verify the authenticity of a thing as ‘magical thinking’, but is it really so magical? I think the writer and researcher would have us think this dynamic is silly because it’s ‘just a thing’ right? We shouldn’t place such a high degree of importance on a bicycle or an old guitar. That’s just vulgar materialism, right? Granted, some things, heirlooms maybe, can have sentimental value, but ultimately even those might well be replaceable too. It shouldn’t be so important to know something is magically your own.

Unless the thing that’s your own is your only shot at passing something of yourself into the future.

The butter knife that Elvis used to spread peanut butter on his peanut butter and banana sandwiches could be anything you can find at Walmart, but if his ‘essence‘ was in someway invested in that knife (and anyone cared to know about it) that part of Elvis might go on into perpetuity. That seems like childish magical thinking until you realize that the only part of the average person’s essence that might actually do this is their children. And until just recently, evolutionarily speaking, there wasn’t any completely dependable way to know if a man was 100% invested in his own ‘things’ – his progeny. His kids would carry on his essence, so in our evolved past it made sense to be obsessive-compulsive about the things that we’re one’s own.

As I stated, women also exhibit this effect as well, and I’d argue for much of the same reasons. Though, in none of the research related in this video was this Endowment Effect controlled for by sex – at least none that I’m aware of. Again, this is conjecture, but I would think that with the intrinsic certainty a woman has in knowing a child is her own, and the collectivist communal nature of women in hunter-gatherer society from which we developed, it might be that women place a higher ‘endowed’ value on different things than men do. I think this effect may be more pronounced in an era where women are almost unilaterally in control of Hypergamy.

I recently saw a video of a fertility doctor who had either used his own sperm to fertilize women’s eggs, or completely random samples to father about 40 children. The women, the children (mostly female) were absolutely aghast that he was their father or some donor who they would never know had contributed to half their DNA. The idea that the selection and control of Hypergamy was taken from them was worthy of the death penalty. Yet this is exactly the control we expect men to relinquish in this age. We will pat men on the back for abandoning their evolved instinct to ascertain paternity. We’ll tell a man he’s a hero for wifing up a single mother and “stepping up to be a father” to a child he didn’t sire and at the same time pretend that father’s are superfluous. We’ll change ‘Father’s Day’ to ‘Special Person’s Day’ and tell men they’re insecure in their masculinity for preferring a son or daughter of his own – but try to remove that control from a woman, try to tell her that Hypergamous choice wasn’t hers to make and it’s tantamount to rape.

“She was never yours, it was just your turn.”

I think it was my fellow Red Man Group friend Donovan Sharpe who coined this phrase. I might be wrong. I’ve read this around the usual Red Pill Reddit subs and other manosphere forums, but it wasn’t until last month (July) when I read yet one more story about a husband whose wife was leaving him and was in the process of Zeroing him out when he decided to kill her, their three kids and then himself. You can read the Twitter reaction to this here:

Five more casualties of the Feminine Imperative:https://t.co/2wx04PIbPG

— Rollo Tomassi (@RationalMale) July 11, 2018

Naturally women were appalled at the deaths of the wife and kids, as they should be. Pre-divorce women will prep months in advance for their new singleness. Often they’ll check out of the marriage and live without any real connection to their, usually Beta, Blue Pill conditioned, husband who languishes in this Blue Pill hell for the duration it takes his wife to establish a new mental persona and finds a way to exit the marriage. She’s already gone from the marriage, but the typical Blue Pill husband believes that he is the source of her discontent and resorts to anything he can to ‘keep things fresh’ or ‘rekindle the old flame’ that a feminine-primary popular culture tells him should be his responsibility. Unfortunately, this guy’s situation is typical of middle aged men today, and I honestly believe is the source that drives suicides and murder-suicides in this demographic. This man was going to be Zeroed Out and he knew it was coming.

That’s when I thought, ‘Was this guy’s turn with her just over?’ Was it as simple as that? If you read this couple’s story there wasn’t a history of him losing his mind. If anything Matthew Edwards was a pretty dedicated and invested father. No history of depression, suicidal tendencies or abuse; just another average frustrated chump who built a life for himself likely based on his Blue Pill conditioning.

But his turn was over and he likely believed the soul-mate myth. How was he supposed to live with out her?

The fem-stream media offers up their standard pablum – “Misogynistic society teaches men that they’re entitled to women’s bodies. Men need to be taught that they don’t own women.” or something similar that goes entirely against a man’s evolved Endowment Effect. What exactly does a man get to think is his own if not his family? When a woman finds out that her Hypergamous choice was made for her by a fertility clinic doctor rather than herself they’re out for blood – again, rightfully so. Then why are we surprised that men, particularly men in Matthew Edwards demographic, resort to murder and suicide when faced with losing everything they’ve invested themselves in.

Now this week we see another, almost identical, tragedy in Colorado this week.

I hate being right all the time.https://t.co/lparvfPOFI

— Rollo Tomassi (@RationalMale) August 16, 2018

And once again we have what looks like another guy being Zeroed out and another quadruple homicide. How man more of these murder-suicides (or just murders in this case) is it going to take before we collectively see the commonalities in all of them?

I had a conversation with several women in the wake of this latest tragedy and every one of them couldn’t wrap their head around why the guy would kill his kids? They could understand why he might kill his wife – the assumption being her unborn child was sired by guy who wasn’t him – but not his kids. I think this is interesting in the light of how men and women approach paternity/maternity and the Endowment Effect. The best answer I could come up with is that a man doesn’t want that part of him to go on into the future without him. The idea that his kids bear some of his essence and he would rather erase that essence entirely than live or kill himself with the knowledge that his children wouldn’t have him in their lives. Killing a wife might be the result of an uncontrolled rage, but killing your kids takes premeditation – there has to be some point to the act, some reasoning (corrupted as it may be) that made sense to him.

The Strategic Pluralism Theory is from a research study by Dr. Martie Haselton:

According to strategic pluralism theory (Gangestad & Simpson, 2000), men have evolved to pursue reproductive strategies that are contingent on their value on the mating market. More attractive men accrue reproductive benefits from spending more time seeking multiple mating partners and relatively less time investing in offspring. In contrast, the reproductive effort of less attractive men, who do not have the same mating opportunities, is better allocated to investing heavily in their mates and offspring and spending relatively less time seeking additional mates.

From a woman’s perspective, the ideal is to attract a partner who confers both long-term investment benefits and genetic benefits. Not all women, however, will be able to attract long-term investing mates who also display heritable fitness cues. Consequently, women face trade-offs in choosing mates because they may be forced to choose between males displaying fitness indicators or those who will assist in offspring care and be good long-term mates (Gangestad & Simpson, 2000).

The commonalities in every one of these murder-suicides is a Blue Pill conditioned, Beta husband who by all indications was playing by the First Set of Books. By all indications these men would fit into the second type of man mention in Strategic Pluralism Theory – they did everything right, they played by the rules, they did their best to invest themselves in their mates and offspring and likely believed they’d earned some Relational Equity from it. But then, their turn was over with their wives. For whatever reason they were faced with a complete loss, a Zeroing Out, of everything they believed they owned. The things they invested so much of their lives in, the things they worked so hard for, the things that retained his ‘essence’, the things they invested their egos in were all being taken away from them. When faced with such a reality men tend to look at only two options; remake and rebuild what they had in the knowledge that this too might be taken from them, or they can simply erase all themselves and all the ‘things’ they were attached too.

Categories: Miscellaneous Blogs

HackMoor 2018/08/08 Finally a Hack Night

Furiously Eclectic People - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 03:10

​Games are on Thursday nights sometime after 6:30PM at World's Best Comics, 9714 Warwick Blvd Newport News, Virginia 23601.

We had a large steak and fresh mozzarella pizza.

PART 1.

++++ START OF SESSION ++++

It has been two months and two days since the last official Hack. If you recall he party had descended from the fighting the Pit Fiend into a forest of 80 foot tall mushrooms.

Aerys had gone ahead to search for the thief that had stolen​ the Party's valued magic items. All he found was his own stolen dagger embedded in one of the mushrooms trunks.

At this point one of the players took his character option. Because the party was participating in the yearly Blackmoor Dungeon festival and had been down there for a week. It was Jacko's time to use one of his magical devices to portal himself in and commandeer the Party. I forget why he was away, maybe it was schooling at BlackMoor U. He may have been a few hours early in the timeline, what the heck.

Meanwhile the party was now down on the forest floor following the tracks that Aerys had found. Eventually it led to an encounter. with some giant lizards that live amidst the mushrooms. I did modify the encounter a bit. The text actually said the forest was populated with "Monitor Lizards". However that seemed a bit strange since none of the encounter tables, listed any Monitor Lizards to be found. So I simply slipped a dozen into my own personal table. Oh and to enhance the encounter a little bit more, instead of Monitor Lizards, I made them Minotaur Lizards.

Now the fight was more or less typical, although as soon as they defeated the first Lizard, two more arrived. then four, then the remaining five. It took awhile.

After that, the party encountered the 11 headed Pyrohydra and also defeated that.

​Lastly after the party had silenced the last encounter they heard singing.

Fee, fi, fo, fum...

++++ OUT OF CHEESE ERROR ++++

BT

BBBB

PART 2.

++++ CHARACTER ROSTER ++++

CHARACTERS
Grok the Dwarf, a third level WitchRanger (Battlemage subclass of Magic User).
Aerys, an Elvariel, a Fingersmith (Thief class).
Baronet Huang - a Master of the West Wind of the Stone Tiger Order, (Monk class).
Numrendir - a human Conjurist (a Conjuror, Magic User subclass)
Junkbot Jackson - a human Tracker/Friar (a Ranger 5th and Cleric 6th level).
​​Jacko, an Albino Dork Elf, a Master Espion (Infiltrator, subclass of Thief).
Serena 2.0 - First Level Battle Mage Second (a Protege of Jacko).​

NPCs/Proteges:
Baronetess Honda - a Human Datai Samurai, Steward of Catan (formerly Temple of the Frog)
Gnomex, a Gnome Adept of Geardal Ironhand (Cleric class.)
Tanzen - a Fae-Born first level Exciter. (Fourth level Invoker, a Magic User subclass).
Fundisha - a half-Elf Swordsperson/Tout (Fighter and Infiltrator, a Thief subclass).

CAPTURED CHARACTERS (both PCs and NPCs)
Gerry Castagere, human Fingersmith, (Thief class) and ever loving devotee of Elefus, abandoned to the Blood Cult in the City of Brass on the Plane of Fire.

MISSING/OFFLINE/RETIRED CHARACTERS
Count Elefus, a human Abbot of Heimdall (Cleric class). RETIRED
Felipe the Dwarf, a third level Sigil (Chosen One subclass of Cleric).
​Sir Weasel, human Guild Soldier, Warlock, & Champion (Thief, Magic User, & Fighter classes) he stayed back in BlackMoor.
- and nine Pilgrim henchmen of various levels. (They wear hoodies.)
Slade Wilson - Dwarven Professional (a Bounty Hunter, Fighter subclass) Left behind at Catan.

BT

BBBB

++++ RECORD KEEPING ++++

PART 3.

This is also posted on three forums, and a blog.



--

Tracy Johnson
Old fashioned text games hosted below:

BT

NNNN

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