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  1.  

    I am not to speak to you, I am to think of you when I sit alone or wake at night alone,
    I am to wait, I do not doubt I am to meet you again,
    I am to see to it that I do not lose you. ~ Walt Whitman

     

    So tomorrow will mark one full year without Jessica in my life. A little over a year ago tonight was our last real conversation before she drifted off for the last time. I recounted some of that conversation in my blog about her death here. It was basically a pep talk meant to lift my spirits. Her last action was to give me a call to action that would help motivate me through what would be an impossible time. It's been almost a year, and ... wow. She was right when she said I could handle it, but it wasn't the straight shot of a path that they write in movies and books. 

    Before I start this, that blog I linked above is poetic, and was massaged and cultivated over a period of time as I started to work things through my head. Basically, it was far more nuanced and eloquent than what this will be. This is going to be a bit more ... normal speak. A tad more raw. I'm going to cover some shit that I've gone through in my life and that my family has endured this year. Some of it is going to be challenging to read if you are sensitive to trauma. I also had both my kids permission to talk about their experiences, so that should clue you in. This won't start out fun, but I want to make a point to myself and to others about something that is critical. Don't worry, it ends uplighting. This is me we are talking about, right? 

    So following my wife's death, shit sucked hard. That goes without saying. It's hard to convey what it feels like without feeling like you are grabbing a Wal-Mart metaphor. It just sucked. It got so much worse. The year has been an emotional gauntlet with one impossible challenge after another. Let's recap. 

    My oldest deals with significant anxiety and PTSD from an event that happened a few years back. This isn't your garden variety anxiety. My straight A student was unable to go to public school because being around anyone that was not family would send the kid into a physiological shock that would require emergency care. When I say PTSD, I mean it. Jessica was a damn great Psychologists and between her, me, and many colleagues we made tremendous progress with my oldest. Then .... no more Jess. The events that my kid witnessed with losing his mother was almost like hitting a reset button on all that hard work. At home he would be fine ... outside it was a different story. 

    Then in April, my daughter, the liveliest and happiest teen I've ever met, had her first birthday without her mom. It hit her hard. In response to her overwhelming pain, she attempted to sever her femoral artery. She attempted suicide and came frighteningly close to succeeding. After hospitalization and wound care and some healing she was placed in crisis care for a week until they determined she could continue with outpatient therapy. Problem is, the kid is kinda brilliant and had a mother with advanced mental health training. She knew what to say to get released. In May she tried again, this time with some prescription pills. Like last time, luck and luck alone played a role in me catching it in time. Rinse, wash, repeat. 

    Every time I thought we were through the worst of it, something else hit and hit harder than before. By the time summer came ... I couldn't help but feel like a complete failure. A failure to Jess, to my kids, and as a parent. I stopped paying attention to myself. I didn't see the signs. I kept dragging the kids on little missions of remembering their Mom. A road trip to places from out past to scatter some of her ashes. I was going through motions that I had heard worked for others trying desperately to fix what felt like my family shattering into a million pieces. Yet I kept up the act. The illusion that I was ok. Read that blog. How many times that I have to say "I'm good". I stopped eating and sleeping normally. I didn't want to dream of her. I didn't want to sleep in our bed. I actually started to manically redecorate the house to change things thinking that would work. All the while, I had a smile and joke for most. Most. I did find myself snapping at good people for almost nothing. A side of myself I only let out for people who acted like legitimate assholes. Not mean, just a smartass with a verbal scalpel. But most times ... I put on a happy face. 

    You see, There was a hubris and arrogance I possessed after Jess died. I thought I could be the rock that my family would lean on. I was no stranger to personal tragedy and complications. Since 1995 I lost my father to suicide, a child in still birth, and another infant after four months old when she could no longer continue fighting a poorly formed heart. Each tragedy I was the rock in the family. It hit me, sure. Yet, I picked everyone else up. I endured with a resilient spirit that became one of my calling cards. It's what my wife referenced before her death. There is nothing that this world could toss at me that could break me .... 

    2017 arrived and laughed it's ass off at me and my assumptions. 

    I assumed I could do what I did before ... process my pain and move forward ... slowly but with absolute certainty that everything will be fine. Focus on others and it will be fine. I was always a that person, and figured that I could bear her death with grace and poise.

    Boy what a big fat dumb idea that was. By the time October rolled around, the effects of the entire year broke through me like a pressure hose through toilet paper. The facade and veneer of a composed mourning widower crumbled and ... left me emotionally drained and bitter in a manner that could have very well become my new normal. It came very very close. My mind went to some dark places when the kids were asleep. I was failing my family. If something happened to them, and I was certain that it was a matter of time ... could I deal with that? Would that be what broke me? 

    Then, it happened. Nothing in particular, and  not in some instant, but it happened. Instead of the kids leaning on me, I found us three leaning on each other. My kids saw I was breaking. My kids caught some of the subtle hints of my private hell. I didn't have to be their rock, we could be each other's. Working through the loss of our Boss Lady and our other demons we were starting to heal together. That said, it wasn't enough. I also had a few close friends that kept on me and they certainly helped. You all know who you are. But as the saying goes, "I needed an adult." 

    I'm not embarrassed one damn bit to say that I found myself seeking a Psychiatrist and someone impartial to talk to. Hell, we lost one amazing woman, soul mate, mother. In a sense ... it's absurd to think I wouldn't need a professional mind miner. You miss someone like Jess in a way that makes everything that came before seem like a minor bump in the road. I sought therapy. I've lived most of my adult life trying to be a ray of light for everyone else, coaching and giving advice. Being that ear and shoulder when it was needed. Each of my own personal tragedies handled and minimized because others were far more important. Shit, I'm nothing special. I'm just an average guy who is the product of a decent parent, a solid upbringing, and a lot of patience. Even my insight and intelligence is simply the product of a natural love for reading. I'm not the star of my own show, I'm the guy that wants to make others shine. Why focus on myself when others are dealing with their own problems. It always felt selfish to me. And that's my biggest flaw. My own personal hamartia. I finally stepped up for myself and said I need to talk to someone. Holy hell it worked. A stranger with a piece of paper and some ephemeral medication helped. No matter how diamond tough you are, anyone can reach a moment they need to hit the pause button. I finally practiced what I preached. Go figure.  

    It's been a long ass road, and even though tomorrow is going to piss me off something wicked, at some point in December everything started to get better. The world started to make sense again. The anxiety, anger, guilt, and bitterness started to ebb away more and more. I was able to think clearly for the first time in a long while. I had almost forgotten what that felt like. And I was recently tested in a pretty dramatic and horror show sort of way. 

    The other day I laid down not feeling great at all. I knew something wasn't right but I didn't want to worry the kids (old habits die hard). I woke up and proceeded to redecorate my bathroom with more red stuff than I thought I had room for in my stomach. A fun present courtesy of (according to a gastroenterologist) years of stress, some unfriendly bacteria, and recently chasing headaches away with aspirin. 

    Had I just gone back to sleep, or didn't successfully fight through passing out due to losing over two pints of blood in a short period, I wouldn't be here. What was a simple duodenum ulcer became a larger wound. Pretty bad situation all around. Anyway, the good doc burnt and sutured the bad hole shut, dropped some meds to kill the H. Pylori, and situation fixed. 

    I'm still woozy at times, completely sworn off aspirin, and have some of the must horrible tasting pills that I have to endure ... but none of that is bothering me. I survived one really bad year and sometime in December ... started to feel like me again. Started to feel like .... I got this. Actually started to feel like 'we got this'. 

    My kids in the last few months have all made amazing progress. The oldest is prepping for college and is as close to normal as I have seen him in a long while. My youngest found her step too and is staring in a local musical. Madison, Faith, and myself ... we found strength as a family, in ourselves, and I like to think that we had one hell of a teacher in Jess. It was a longer and more difficult path for all of us than I expected, but we pulled clear. The house feels alive. I have that old bounce in my step, and it's genuine. 

    I miss the fuck out of her, but I know she would approve of the fact that we are making it through this after all. I know I mention her a lot. I did that when she was alive. When you have a family as great as I have, you talk about them. I say that because recently it's been intimated by someone that I am seeking pity from others. No. Even though I've been through hell and back, I'm lucky. I had and have love. I don't seek pity. But Jess was that kind of awesome, and I'll be dipped in shit if I don't carry her memory with me where I go right there on my sleeve. That's what love can do to you. 

    No pity ... just a whole lot of pride for my wife, my kids, and for the first time ... myself. What is broken can be fixed. If we can make it with help and family and friends, so can you. 

    Sorry for the long stream of consciousness. Felt like it was needed. ;)

    A Personal Year of Hell - Jan 21, 2017 - Jan 21, 2018 ... RIP

  2. I used to play and make Youtube videos actively for the Smash Bros Melee scene and I'm considering returning. My favorite thing about going to tournaments was recording myself playing the game with others and uploading individual funny moments to Youtube. Want to check out my latest 1?

     

     

     

    It would be nice if I could gain subscribers again, but even if I don't, I think I'm going to return just to help out the new players get better. Playing to win is too stressful and I'm not among the ultra talented. There's no point for me to hope to win. Maybe I'll also play hyper-aggro to make the game more fun for them. I play a variety of characters

  3. Forgot to post it here.

     

    Postive:

    My Holiday in Sussex, I stayed in hotel in Hastings, unlike in 2016 didn’t see much Hastings, but for 4 days staying there see much of the town include Hatsings Castle, some museum and Hastings park, even check the area me and my famliy use to stay. Also on that holiday get to see Bodiam Castle (which I was unable to see in 2016), Battle of Hastings battlefield & Abbey (which also unable to see in 2016), Chichester cathedral & market cross and Seven Sister cliffs (As well as Eastbourne, last famliy holiday we had there).

    After holiday in Sussex & back home, went on day out, (on May) Monday-Blackpool, went on Tower trip, Tuesday went to Ilikey, visited Cow &  Calf Rocks & Ilikey Moor, On Wednesday, Penshaw Mounment, also check out Sunderland, tell you about Thursday last and get to see Thirsk.

    Visited Hull, City of Culture 2017, four times. First, visited Humber Bridge, The Deep, Hull & East Riding Museum, & City centre, Second, Humber Bridge, third, went inside Spurn Lightship & Arctic Corsair and fouth, visited Maritime Museum, Hull City Hall (Didn’t went inside there did seen it few times) & Hull Minster.

    On February, on frist week off of the year, visited Byland Abbey, Yorkshire Air Museum and Brimham Rock.

    On October, My last week off, visited Holgate Windmill (in York), in Halifax- The Piece’s Hall & Halifax Minster and In Salture, a cat and Salture Mill.

    Second time to Blackpool, to Star Trek Exhibion

    Of course, having one week in February, two weeks in may and one week in October.

    Manchester United won Uefa Cup and League Cup in season 2016/17

    Seeing movies at cinema, Justice League, Star Wars The Last Jedi, Churchill, Lego Batman, Spiderman Homecoming, The Guarden of the galaxy & few others.

    10th Anniversary of Hatsune Miku

    10th Anniversary of Kagamine Rin

    Loving Wendys

    Seeing BB8 again on screen & Seeing Porgs

    Discoving Tempest & Princess Skystar.

     

    Negetive

    Someone/thing took money from my bank account, but bank stop it and renew my card. Worst bank sent messgae on my mobile about it I’m at work and phone at work. It fear me, fear it may happen again.

    Parents agrue, hear my mum went mentle and dad moaning. Can’t stand it.

    Football, Manchester City think they’re Barcelona. Even, won two trophies, European Super Cup was dissappointing  and after good start of 2017/18 season, things turn not good, lost to Hudderfield, Chelsea and worse, Manchester Sh**y (And over celebrating) and failed to defend League Cup, lost to Bristol City. Arsenal keep winning FA Cup. Also lost a match at Champions League. Thought Manchester United doing well, but not yet. Also annoying to hear negative toward Manchester United both Haters, non-fans & fans. And people saying England not winning the World Cup and saying Germany be winning the cup and knowing how to win.

    Leeds (& other UK Cities) disqualified from Europe’s Captial of Culture. Made me mad and even tweet about it and some f***ing remoaners start make excuses for EU.

    Craziness of Brexit haters, stop Brexit blur blur blur, EU flag everywhere.

    Craziness of Tramp Haters, what can I say, bunch of arogants what happen if Trump gone? Think they can get rid if him, they are the ones ruining America.

    P** off with some Bus Services . Also one time driver went pass our stop, not sure I press the bus stop button.  Bus drivers and service been p*** me off as always.

    Have swelling gum.

    Terror Attack in Manchester & London.

    Big Ben be slient for 4 years.

    Got new sofa, I don’t like. It’s two person sofa and can’t lay on it.

    Seeing some statues taken down in America and protesters wanted them down.

     

    Also on 2017

    Got a shed

    New Sofa & chair

    New Dentist

    New Doctor (Haven’t book yet)

    In Doctor Who, The Doctor become a Woman.

     

    2018

    At moment, not sure. There movies to look forward and planing a holiday and planning which places to go. Also World Cup, Don’t care England win the World Cup f*** anyone who disagree.

  4. Quick Review: Splatoon 2 (Nintendo Switch)

    This is a game that doesn't earn its praise, nor does it deserve it. While the base gameplay concept is fine and dandy, that is shooting ink everywhere and all that jazz, the actual PvP experience here is dreadful. You might think this game's whole point is ink spreading, but because of the maps and overall design, you will run into others constantly and the actual shooting mechanics show their true colors (pun?) within this combat. Aiming is horrible and twitchy. Using the analog stick feels so imprecise that any battle feels like a battle of pure luck, Considering you die within half a second anyways, that's what it all is, luck. There are also many weapon imbalances. Some weapons are terrible, while others are extremely overpowered. Weapons like the splatterscopes are far too slow for the whole objective, while weapons like the brushes and sloshers are so broken that it is hilarious, such as how when you attack with these weapons, the person you are attacking can barely see because ink is being splashed all over the place. Any other weapons, mostly they feel the same. Many automatic weapons feel very similar to each other and the only major difference is with sub weapons and specials. Again, some of those suck, others are stupidly overdone.

    I wouldn't mind all of this garbage if the overall game didn't feel so irritating in its execution. Losing makes you lose points on your weapons freshness, so this means that no matter how well you do, which I frequently outperform my team on the ink spreading objective, if your team sucks, then you will be punished for it. What if your internet has a hiccup for no reason out of nowhere and you disconnect for a split second, leaving the match? You get punished, losing freshness points further. Hell, what if Nintendo's own servers commit suicide and disconnect you even before a match fully starts??? YOU. GET. PUNISHED. Had that happen once. A match was loading and right when it shows the map itself, I got disconnected out of nowhere and there were zero problems on my network, so it was clearly Nintendo's problem and I lost freshness points. Awesome. Yay.

    The only other diversions are the completely pointless single player campaign that offers no real reward for anything and Salmon Run, a hugely overrated horde mode that features a tiny map and bosses as far as the eye can see. It is challenge in the worst possible way, throwing so much at you that there is no way to deal with it.

    Above everything else, the game just feels like a chore. Want to level up for more weapons? Eventually, and by that I mean really friggin fast, it takes forever to level up even once. Which makes it all feel like a grind. How about abilities? Want to unlock those? A grind. What about ability chunks to get specific abilities that you actually want on a piece of gear that you like? A grind. What about taking chunks off of gear you don't like to use for others which costs 20,000 gold to do? Griiiiiiiiiiiiiiind. For some reason, nobody mentions this type of stuff because everyone thinks Nintendo is the beacon of perfection. They aren't and this game's glaring issues are a testament to that. Also, there is no voice chat at all or a proper party system, obviously. The only voice chat you can get is with Nintendo's terrible phone app and...screw that noise.

    All in all, I want to like this game. Seriously, I do. That makes me even more frustrated. This game has so many good ideas, but not good execution. Considering that this is a sequel, that makes it even more confusing.

    Final Score: 4/10

  5. I want to be accepted as a person
    Latest Entry

          Just

                  Got

     a. Trail. Cammmmmm

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    I stole this from @SparkliciousSwirls and @Lightwinglicious yay! :raritysillyhat:What are you waiting for? Dew it! 

    1.- State something I learned about you by looking at your profile for 20 seconds. 

    2.- State a color you remind me of.

    3.- Name an element I think you belong to (water, fire, earth, air).

    4.- Let you know which MLP character you remind me of.

    5.- Ask you a question I want you to answer.

    6.- Find something I actually find tolerable about you.

    7.- Think of something to say if we were roommates.

    8.- State the food/flavor/smell you remind me of.

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    Hello, everyone, I last visited this website on September 24, 2015. I lost my password, couldn’t recover, and decided to leave this site behind. I left the MLP wiki (my wikia username is Gavin the Otter, it used to be Spike the Dragon) later on in May 2016. I regret not leaving both sites sooner. 

    After almost 2 years of absence from the MLP fandom, and no intention to return, I’ve decided to just come back here one final time, to tell everyone where I am in life now.

    In about November 2014, I became really depressed, and it lasted until about March 2015. MLP stuff just brings back too much bad memories, I’m sorry.

    My interest in MLP came to a halt in about February 2016, and a little bit later on, I realised that I had no interest in the show anymore. I also realised me getting into the fandom was a big mistake. Before I lost interest in the show, I really got interested in furries (primary fandom now), and I also got really into animes like Naruto, Attack on Titan, and kind of Fairy Tail too. I still think MLP is a decent show, but I doubt I’ll ever watch it again. 

    On a side note, in about February 2015, I became an atheist, after being a lifelong Catholic. Surprise, I’m a Catholic again, but not a super religious one, as I still hold fairly liberal viewpoints, but not super liberal ones. So, yeah, I’m once again a Catholic.

    I have nothing against the MLP fandom, as I did make a lot of good friends in it, but I feel like I should’ve left that behind me a long time ago. But I’m back again to end it on a positive note. 

    Thank you for anyone on this website who was my friend while I was here. I’m sorry if I’ve ever upset anyone here or made anyone uncomfortable, but I’m sure we can all put that stuff behind us now. I’ve became much more mature within the past few years, so I’m capable of not making such a mess over stuff now.

    So, yeah, there you have it. I’m no longer a brony, though I don’t hate MLP at all. I don’t regret getting into this fandom, but I made a lot of mistakes here. If you ever make a mistake, then the only thing you can do is admit it, learn from it, and attempt to not let it happen. I’m glad I’ve met anyone I met in the MLP fandom, because that’s just how things happened in my life, and I like my life.

    Thank you for reading this, I wish you all good luck in life, goodbye.

     

  6. Yes, I stole this. And yes, it's actually how it is supossed to go because Deviantart rules. And yes as well, I'll answer. And also yes, yes. :nom: 

    And yes:
     

    Quote
    1. What do you think the next forum trend will be? (Or what would you want it to be?)

    It will be about ships

    So yeah, ask because I'm bored :sealed: 

     1.- State something I learned about you by looking at your profile for 20 seconds. do I even need to look at it because I'm already a profile stalker 

     2.- State a color you remind me of. 

     3.- Name an element I think you belong to (water, fire, earth, air).

     4.- Let you know which MLP character you remind me of.

     5.- Ask you a question I want you to answer.

     6.- Find something I actually find tolerable about you.

     7.- Think of something to say if we were roommates.

     8.- State the food/flavor/smell you remind me of. 

     9.- Guess something about you.

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    I was going through my old journals on DeviantArt and I came across a "comment and I will" entry from two and a half years ago. Those seemed to be pretty popular, so I thought I'd copy it onto a blog over here and do it again. :P 

    So, all you have to do is leave a random comment on this blog, and then I will:

     1.- State something I learned about you by looking at your profile for 20 seconds. do I even need to look at it because I'm already a profile stalker 

     2.- State a color you remind me of. 

     3.- Name an element I think you belong to (water, fire, earth, air).

     4.- Let you know which MLP character you remind me of.

     5.- Ask you a question I want you to answer.

     6.- Find something I actually find tolerable about you.

     7.- Think of something to say if we were roommates.

     8.- State the food/flavor/smell you remind me of. 

     9.- Guess something about you.

  7. We all have our "new year's resolutions" like going to the gym, eating better, or trying to be more charitable Y'know, the ones that are held for a few hours. Mine are a little bit different.

    1.) Learn Linux

    In the past couple of years, I have found that I am much more of a tech guy than I ever realized. Building my own PC and helping others with their issues, at least to the best of my knowledge/Google skills. For me, learning a different operating system is the next step. I could learn MacOS, but I already established that I have no intentions of doing so. I intend to do this by building a separate machine, one that is fairly inexpensive (~$600, give or take) enough to where I won't have to worry about too much. I really want to do it to break free from Windows. Even though I have little issues with Windows 10, I feel Microsoft is going to really tighten the screws on what software, and possibly hardware is and isn't allowed to run on Windows.

    2.) Buy a new car

    It doesn't have to be brand-new, but I want something that I can say I actually want. I currently dive a 2009 Kia Spectra. It hasn't cause me any problems in the approaching 4 years since I took ownership of it, but it's not really the car I want to walk out to and just drive it. I also want a different car as I had my first accident in it. I'll spare the details, but the anxiety it cause me in the 2 FUCKING YEARS it took to finally settle it still sometimes haunts me.

    3.) Take better care of myself

    I admit that I don't take the best care of my body. I'm just going to leave it as that.

    4.) Be more social

    I think it's pretty obvious that I don't socialize very much. This goes back to 2016 when I was really beginning to shut people out after a friendship ended in a bad way. It was after this that I had thought that I wasn't meant to be in any relationship of any kind. This had been going back to 2012 when I broke up with my last girlfriend. In that time, I have become even more bitter and angry than ever previously. This resolution will be the most challenging since I will need to put myself in social situations that are familiar to me, but with a different mindset, one that I haven't tapped into in many, many years. One thing I can do right now is re-enable followers on my profile, which I did after this post was published. (Look at me typing as if I'm a few minutes in the future. :P)

    Also, I had Spotify playing in the background, and one of the songs that played was King by Lauren Aquilina. It always seems to pop up in times like this. It speaks to me very deeply. The only other song that has ever done that was The Sound of Silence.

     

  8. 2017 was an outstanding year for gaming, from the releases of strong Playstation exclusives like Tales of Berseria, Yakuza 0, Gravity Rush 2, Nier Autonoma, Horizon Zero Dawn, etc., to the return to form with Resident Evil 7, to the release of Nintendo's biggest hit in a while, the Nintendo Switch, to rave reception on top of releasing juggernauts like Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey, among others. But like every year, there's always the shitshows trailing it, such as the gross and growing popularity of loot boxes among developers, to some seriously dismal games, one of which I had the misfortune of buying at release

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    Power Rangers Mega Battles tries to cash in on both the heavy nostalgia as well as tie in with the surprisingly good Power Rangers(2017 Movie) but instead becomes an utter trainwreck. Right off the bat the game looks like a real cheap mobile game with seemingly no effort put into it(much like 90% of the mobile game market). Wanna know why I decided to play it? Several Youtube videos starting the first game has many people saying "hey this is pretty nice!", which admittedly is true. The game starts you out with a training segment while playing a pumping intro tune that gets you excited for the events that unfold....then you encounter the first enemies, and immediately you'll realize the games glaring failures. Attacking the enemies leave absolutely no impact and feels like cheaply made pinatas. Many enemies, while consisting of several classic Power Rangers enemies like Puddies or the Crows, among others, which are mainly just cannon fodder, however later enemies have stranger patterns that make them unreasonably difficult to hit, though that also has to do with the game's poor hit detection. This makes fighting bosses an even bigger pain in the ass as they have some really convoluted patterns that makes them more of a chore.

    The game's biggest insult is the Megazord fights, something that should be difficult to screw up, but they take the absolute worst route to take these. The moment you get into the Megazord you begin in....tank mode....shooting 4 glaringly obvious weak points(at least this makes the giant fights easier) then the Megazord goes into robot mode and you finally fight the boss....via quick-time events, everyone's favorite past time!

    The game also has the gall to charge $10 DLC if you didn't buy it within the first week, which nets you the new cast of characters(Rocky, Adam, Aisha and Kat) as well as an alt. costume for Billy and White Ranger Tommy, and considering there's nothing in the game for them, it isn't worth it

    In fact this dumpster fire isn't worth it. If you want your fix of Power Rangers in your games, there's a surprisingly fun beat-em-up for the SNES(or get the rom if you don't own one, or are just too lazy) that costs about as much as this game does but is much more worth it. What ever the case may be, avoid this game as it will give you as big of a headache as it does for Rita Repulsa

  9. Guys.... I know that I already asked it plenty of times in past, but..... after a really really really painful event that happened to me today, I have to ask you again, and I'm sorry to use a blog post for this but I really have to: people of MLPforums, do you still care for the Mane 6?

  10. Aha! I knew it!

     

    Every since Discord's reformation, I've been hoping for a an episode where chaos lessens or disappears in Equestria (through the efforts of a new villain, a misguided hero, or Discord himself,) and because of that, Discord begins to vanish, get sick, or otherwise become at risk of disappearing for good. It would be a lesson in the value of differences and free will, the charm of the chaos of everyday life, and finally, we got that episode! ...sort of.

    My main issue here is that I was hoping for this theme to be explored under a lot more higher stakes.

    I enjoyed this episode, but I really hope its not the last we see of this theme! There's so much potential in this storyline beyond just a tea party!

  11. :dashhat: I hope you all had a wonderful and joyous Hearth's Warming :oneheckofahat:

    In the comments, tell me what you got for Hearth's Warming :)

    Here's what I got:

    • A new gaming PC (you can read my "amazing" story about assembling it here)
    • A Nintendo Switch with Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Super Mario Odyssey (I've already beat both of them :wub:)
    • A copy of Cuphead
    • Some money from relatives, which I promptly spent on groceries because adult.
  12. Never thought I would do something like this but it came up due to what happened with this set.
     
    For those of you who play the My Little Pony Collectible Card Game, you should know that the newest set, "Seaquestria and Beyond", released not too long ago. Like previous sets, this one does further evolve the game by adding in new strategies along with strengthening current ones but there's one issue that is sure to truly piss people off, and that has to do with the rarities or lack thereof.
    I don't know what Enterplay were thinking--or smoking--when they made this decision, but essentially there are no foil cards in this set at all despite the rarities still being there. Super Rares are basically commons now with the SR suffix and Ultra Rares are also commons but with the UR suffix and a golden stamp designating their status as Ultra Rares. If you pardon my language here  but what the bloody hell happened that caused such a regression? :glimmer:
     
    Is Enterplay trying to cut costs by regressing back like this? Was it because the card art was incompatible with the foil technology? Or did they just rush this out in order to have something for the holiday season? It could be one of these answers or something else entirely but the fact is that this is just disgraceful and doesn't warrant shelling out a great deal for this set. Am I upset about this? Yes but I'm not completely blinded by anger. I'm sure others are upset about this too. When people get booster packs and boxes in any card game, they look forward to seeing what foiled cards they end up getting. Sure, it does borderline obsession but the point is that they want to see what they get.
     
    By taking away the foil and leaving us with what we got, Seaquestria and Beyond feels like a major step backward. Granted, I do like the stamp used on the Ultra Rare cards and they should retain it but don't take away the foil in the process. Now I know this sounds immature of me but I just had to vent out at this disgraceful action.
     
    If this is going to be the standard from now on, I feel Enterplay should be stripped of the license to publish this game and given to someone who knows what they're doing.
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    Nothing shows a history of nonsense as joking around with your friends and one of my moments shined a bit more than anything else.

    Around halfway through my time in boy-scouts (yes I am a girl, yes I was in boy-scouts, don't ask.) I went on a camping trip with some of my fellow members. We ended up deciding on a high altitude snow camping backpacking trip in the Rocky Mountains. The start of the trip was rather normal and it went about as simple as one could hope with a normal trip. We all had our own bags and me being the shortest person in the group, only about 4' 5" at the time, so some of the other peoples bags were taller than me which was quite weird. We quickly got on our hike where our objective was to go around the mountain which as a bit of a hike but we were all ready.

    So we all began to get on our way and the walking began like normal. To spare you the boring parts that walking entails (we just played word games and stuff) we eventually made it to our halfway point 3 days in and set up camp. At the camp site we were a bit too high up in the mountains and we ended up a bit oxygen deprived. We set up a campfire and since we were planning on waking up a bit later the next day and pushing our speed to test ourselves. We sat around and told stories, after a while one of my friends named Alex told a joke.

    "What's the difference between a piano and a jellyfish?"

    "You can't strum a guitar."

    ...

    ...

    ...

    Yeah, that was it, kinda a bit of a letdown thanks to all of that buildup huh but thanks to it we were all dying of laughter. None of us could stop laughing even though the joke made absolutely no sense afterwards. For most of the rest of the hike we couldn't stop thinking about it and it ended up becoming a solid inside joke with our troop.

    That's just one of my weird stories from my old story, hope you'll join me for the next one!

  13. It’s been awhile since I did one of these mall blogs. But the choice for this month is easy. Burlington Center Mall has been in a state of decline for about a decade now.  It seems the end is now in sight. The Burlington County Times reports that the mall may now be in the process of shutting down for good. http://www.burlingtoncountytimes.com/news/20171201/2-nonprofits-asked-to-leave-burlington-mall-amid-potential-closing

    Burlington Center opened in the Philadelphia suburb of Burlington Township, New Jersey in 1982 to great promise. It lies roughly halfway between Philly and Trenton in the I-295 and NJ Turnpike corridor. At the time it appeared well positioned to fill a retail gap in the region. It also sports a fountain sculpture made by the renowned Zenos Frudakis who has created many pieces of public art in recent decades. It’s kinda funny that the most frequent question isn’t what’s going to happen to the mall but what will happen to the elephant? 

    For the first 20 plus years of existence the mall did well.  But other malls in Cherry Hill, Moorestown, and Lawrenceville received expansions and upgrades while Burlington stayed put. Burlington also developed a reputation for crime after a gang fight at the mall in 2007.  This took a toll on business until the landlord could no longer make the mortgage payments.  After being foreclosed upon, the mall was auctioned off to a group called Moonbeam Investments.  They drafted some grand plans for redeveloping the property into an indoor/outdoor hybrid center. But the plans were never formally presented to the township and were seemingly shelved. In the meantime the mall continued to bleed tenants. Today in December of 2017 there are only about five stores left. Also, the wing containing the elephant fountain was walled off to prepare for demolition which never got underway. Dan Bell’s video dates from 2015 and it’s much worse now. Even the Foot Locker shown in the next, more recent video is now gone.  

     

  14. Over the long summer, my mandarin oranges developed and finally ripened into these delectable sweet treats! It's been about half a year from blossom to fruit and everyday was worth it :smug:

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    DSC08060.thumb.JPG.c6f480cd21e364df9ec901daed76b4c7.JPG

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    stormy_s_christmas_party_stream__please_read__by_stormblaze_pegasus-dbvo25s.thumb.png.8069c544993c76d3b5f13b0ed7d29f9b.png

     

    OPEN INVITE FOR EVERYONE ON THE FORUM! 

     

    I'm doing a Christmas party art stream - mics on, Discord voice chat will be streamed too and very likely to have my webcam enabled too so you can watch how drunk I get! 
    Denz is off at his work's Xmas party so im having one for myself. I plan to draw those who join the discord chat whilst drinking Cider through the "night". It's possible that Denz may appear late in and join in, but we're talking midnight kinda time - We'll see what happens. 


    So how does this work? How do I get an invite?

    2 Ways to join in the fun:

    ~ Join our Discord server and get on that voice chat and join in attempted singing and just general banter as if you would an Xmas party. 

    ~ Join the text chat on my Twitch channel and just watch the mayhem. 

    ***********Please only join the Discord chat if you are ok with having your voice streamed -otherwise please stick to the text chats. ****************

    Feel free to grab a drink for yourselves! I will be piping a playlist with Christmas songs mixed in the background on low volume too. This will be a total experiment! I do hope you come join in and enjoy! 

    SET YOUR ALARMS FOR DECEMBER 8TH @ 8PM GMT!!!! 


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    DISCORD SERVER (PLEASE GO TO "STORMY'S CHRISTMAS PARTY" ROOMS TO JOIN IN) 

    https://discord.gg/DccD474

    TWITCH CHANNEL

    https://www.twitch.tv/stormblazepegasus

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    Pasted from a post I made on a thread:

    Unpopular opinion, but I think that not much will change without NN.

    I know there's been a few instances where companies were caught blocking things, but the FCC has either fined or ordered them to stop, all without NN. One ISP in North Carolina was ordered to pay $15,000 by the FCC for blocking Vonage, and when Comcast blocked the BitTorrent protocol, the FCC ordered them to stop as well. Plus, many experts, such as Marc Andreessen (the creator of Netscape), Mark Cuban (multi-millionaire and owner of the Dallas Mavericks, with Internet start-ups in his history), and Peter Thiel (creator of PayPal and an investor in Facebook) have all stated that NN would extremely limit investment in broadband networks, since if they cannot charge Netflix or some other company for bandwidth as NN says, the ISP cannot get a return on all that fiber they've been installing in cities (as many ISPs have been doing).

    As for the "paid lanes"? That seems like a far stretch, and with many ISPs converting their existing bandwidth to fiber optic, they should be able to handle that traffic. Plus, you know how cell providers are starting to not charge for data on streaming services (such as T-Mobile not charging for data on Spotify, and AT&T not charging your data on DirecTV NOW)? Not allowed on NN. People love this policy, and a lot of people would hate to see it go.

    ----

    If you want to see the Internet become extremely unprofitable, where companies choose to not invest in websites or starting their own services, then NN is for you. ISPs like AT&T, Verizon, Comcast and the sort need to charge these companies for bandwidth in order to cover their network costs, and if they cannot do that, as Net Neutrality orders them to, they take a huge hit in their bank accounts, since that monthly fee you pay to your ISP cannot nearly cover the bill for bandwidth. Internet backbones like Cogent and Level 3/CenturyLink charge quite a bit of money (sometimes within millions of dollars a month to big services like Netflix), which ISPs also need to connect to the world as well (do a traceroute to a website, and you're likely to see a company like Level 3, Cogent or Telia pop up as one of the routes). If they cannot charge ISPs or services as well, they take a huge hit too.

    I don't know, maybe people want the Internet to become where people are afraid to invest in it, like it was after the dot-com bubble, where companies had lost millions in start-ups that would go bankrupt a year later. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  15. Hello everypony! ^^

    I was thinking on holding a vote about Who should return in January. You will decide which pony i already used should return for a whole month! :D 

    The deadline will be 31th of December.

    If you already voted, please share this post so more people can also vote :3

  16. Rhapsody
    Latest Entry

    Alright, so I know a lot of you will be saying, "hey, that’s not how Wasp looks!” But I drew this picture just after the Ant-Man movie came out with only the end credits scene of the wasp suit to go on, so chill. I will probably revise it soon.

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  17. Back in July, I made this blog post regarding NN.

    And then just recently, I stumbled upon this article.

    https://news.wgbh.org/2017/11/27/end-net-neutrality-will-cripple-first-amendment

    This is exactly what I was talking about. The internet is a medium of the public that can be used in many ways, especially voicing our opinions; speech! Just like unlimited political funding! (yes there are definitely some rules but it's essentially just like that).

    I concede that some websites may have a political bias (Pai referring to Twitter), but I'm afraid that this is the least of any concerns under net neutrality and getting rid of it isn't going to make the internet free and open if entire websites may not be able to sustain themselves under new rules (or lack of them).

    To limit the internet is to limit free speech, a constitutional amendment. I wish someone would realize this and bring this issue to the Supreme Court, present these ideas, and put an end to the debate about NN and keep things they way they are as they should be.