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  1. The Schuylkill Mall: 1980 to 2017. 

    The doors can be closed any day now, so if you're near Frackville, PA, I suggest you visit as soon as possible.  This mall is symptomatic of the economic decline of the Pennsylvania coal region more than the current trend away from mall shopping.  The mall was one of several planned and built by Crown American in largely rural areas near Interstate highway exits.  Another one, the Shippensburg Mall, is also along I-81. That mall is very weak and possibly dying as well, but that one isn't in imminent danger of closing.  The same can't be said of the Schuylkill Mall.  

    The previous owner of the Schuylkill Mall declared bankruptcy last year due to declining sales.  Subsequently, the property was auctioned off and purchased by NorthPoint development, a company which specializes in building logistical facilities.  At that point, the writing was on the wall.  In May the tenants were given 60-90 days to vacate.  We're now beyond the end of that period and the mall's website was taken down.  I don't know if any inline stores are left. But it was announced that demolition will start from the Bon-Ton (already closed) to the Pearl Theater side, allowing the movie theater to remain until the end of the year.  

    Anyway, that's the condensed version of what's happening now.  So, why is the Schuylkill Mall cool and why should anyone care? Because it's one of the best examples of vintage 1970s and 80s retail architecture. :)  There are now a number of good videos on Youtube featuring this mall which will help preserve the memory of this place and this chapter in the Frackville area's history.  The first one is from Dan Bell which includes an old school commercial that I could have sworn I saw first hand back in the day. This was recorded in 2015. 

    The thumbnail highlights a vintage Spencer's storefront and the video goes on to show the distinctive tile and fountains seen throughout.  It's a shame almost none of this will be preserved.  But I am happy to say that the coal miner statue has found a new home at a nearby mining museum and amusement park.  http://www.knoebels.com/ride-play/attractions/mining-museum

    And just for giggles, here's another walk though the mall.  This one is from February of this year and you can already see how much deader it is.  

     

  2. So, I've been noticing a lot of cool stuff lately. However, it requires a PC.

    Pony maker (yikes), ponytown (which I want to try) and other games pretty much require a PC in order to work. Now, I don't have a computer, and I don't need one. But these games and such require a PC. I don't have $300+ for a PC, so basically I'm screwed here.

    Not everyone is a card carrying member of the PC master race. Pony developers really need to develop with other devices in mind.

  3. MGSV:

    -Several Stuff

    Formula 1 2016:

    -Several Online Races

    --Trophy Earned: Top 3( Achieve a podium finish in any game mode )(Silver)(Common 84.98%)

    --Trophy Earned: Taking It Online( Complete an Online Race )(Bronze)(Common 52.13%)

    --Trophy Earned: From Dawn Till Dusk( Set-up your own Time of Day scenario and complete a race )(Bronze)(Uncommon 29.69%)

    --Trophy Earned: Not In The Corners( Politely ask your Race Engineer to stop talking to you out on track )(Bronze)(Uncommon 48.42%)

    --Trophy Earned: Competitive Streak( Complete 5 Online Races )(Bronze)(Uncommon 39.65%)

    --Trophy Earned: Save For A Rainy Day( Create and race your own weather scenario )(Bronze)(Uncommon 30.74%)

    --Trophy Earned: Tweaking( Use the Multi Function Display to adjust your set-up while on track )(Bronze)(Common 67.33%)

    --Trophy Earned: Winning Streak( Win a total of 5 Online Races )(Silver)(Uncommon 25.00%)

  4. One of my weak spots as a fan of this show is pony politics. Good or bad, if a My Little Pony episode revolves around the main characters struggling to adjust to new responsibilities - especially if said responsibilities are related to diplomacy - then I'm bound to get some enjoyment out of it. "Triple Threat" is a little too predictable to be on par with "Party Pooped," my favourite episode of this type, but it delivers the sympathetic internal conflict which always drives these episodes, and has a lot of charming and funny moments to boot, as well as a great moral.

    If anything brings "Triple Threat" down, it's the story itself, which is very predictable and is often expected to drive scenes with few jokes to liven things up. "Triple Threat" admirably gives its story more time to breathe than many episodes this season, but it still refuses to add any twists or even unexpected quirks, and while there's enough fun moments to carry the rote narrative, it's simply too familiar to sustain attention through the entire 22 minutes.

    Still, this is a major improvement over the likes of "Forever Filly."

    When Spike accidentally invites both Ember and Thorax to Ponyville on the same day, he fears that if they meet, their contrasting personalities might lead to a breakdown in relations between the two species. In order to prevent this, he enlists Twilight and Starlight to keep the two leaders apart, and in the meantime, the map calls on him to solve a friendship problem, adding even more stress to his plate.

    "Triple Threat" is not very polished story-wise. Spike appears to have invited Ember and Thorax on the same day entirely due to disorganization and absent-mindedness, which is rather unlike him, and nobody ever suggests that they allow the two to meet and see what happens. Spike knows both personalities enough that his belief that they could start a war is about as founded as Starlight's fear of Nightmare Moon returning in "A Royal Problem," and there's never even the slightest doubt that Ember and Thorax will get along just fine once they actually meet. Even the introduction of the Cutie Map is superfluous and predictable: it's immediately apparent that the greatest friendship problem is the one Spike has created, and his attempts to find a friendship problem amount to a couple mildly amusing sight gags at most.

    But that's unsurprising at this point in season 7. Thankfully, this episode has stronger comedic chops than others like it, and every time it sinks into tedium, another solid joke pops in to make the episode entertaining again. Be it Twilight's bizarre fixation on chairs, Ember munching on the palace walls, or Thorax getting distracted by pretty objects, the episode is filled with fun moments, and even the return of the Cutie Map provides a distraction from the weak story. "Triple Threat" is hardly the show's most fun episode, and it doesn't have the rapid-fire jokes or joyous mood of something like "A Flurry of Emotions," but it's still frequently entertaining, and much of this comes down to its main characters.

    On one hand, Thorax is somehow even more charming than in his previous appearances. His gentle demeanour leads to a lot of solid moments, and although none are quite as good as his arrival in Ponyville, simply getting to see him be gentle and sweet is a delight. He's just so earnest and chipper that even the moments where he's dryly reacting to the plot have a little charm to them, and his dynamic with Spike continues to be organic and pleasant. He's here to tell Spike about some Changelings who don't want to share love, and this marks the second episode in a row which set up a future episode. It's nice to see My Little Pony experimenting with serialization, but the rest of the episode treats Thorax's issue as not being respected enough by his people at large, so this moment of setup only bogs the episode down.

    On the other hand, Ember is massively improved over her debut, largely because the show has placed more emphasis on her aggressive mannerisms. She does what she wants, and isn't happy when anyone gets in the way of it, and although it's not always fun to watch her be inadvertently rude due to not understanding pony customs, gags like seeing her munch on the pillars of Twilight's castle are irresistible, and it's just nice to see her made slightly more distinctive than she was in "Gauntlet of Fire." The episode even tries a little harder to separate "pony customs" from "friendship," as Ember briefly mentions at least one trick scares ponies was very popular among dragons, although it still sometimes falls into the trap of conflating the two.

    The episode's best moment comes at the end, when Ember and Thorax finally meet. They misinterpret each other as attempting to threaten Spike, but as soon as they realize they're both Spike's friends, they also discover that Spike had been trying to keep them apart, which upsets them. Later, they get an adorable scene of talking to each other about their problems, and agreeing to help each other with them. Ember doesn't understand friendship, so Thorax helps her react to problems by talking instead of with displays of aggression, and Thorax is struggling with being respected. so Ember teaches him how to assert himself. In the end, they showcase these lessons by expressing their anger with Spike, and while both serve as good lessons on their own, that additional lesson of giving contrasting personalities a chance to get along is very solid as well.

    And then there's Spike, who one would think is way too young to be in any sort of diplomatic role, but who is sympathetic in part because of that. As with "Party Pooped," half of the fun here is just watching Spike freaking out, although without "Party Pooped's" frantic pacing it does get old after a while. Since season 4, Spike has been fairly reliable for starring in episodes about overcoming some sort of insecurity, and while his episodes are rarely the most polished of the show, I still think that the show is at its best when it revolves around insecurity. Here, we see that Twilight's tendency to freak out over insignificant things has begun to rub off on him, and while the episode proceeds to belabour that point unecessarily, it remains sympathetic nonetheless. Spike gets some funny moments, but they're not as common as those of his guests, and at times his constant worry goes from sympathetic to just tedious.

    Finally, both Twilight and Starlight are present here. Twilight's winning streak continues with a quick gag about how Spike learned his panicking from her, and the weird introduction of an obsession with chairs is a blast, but she's not given nearly as much to do in the second half of the episode. Starlight, meanwhile, is finally coming into her own as a character, but I must admit that I'm still not particularly interested in her. Her mild snarkiness feels kinda hypocritical given the absurd things she does, and since the mane six and Spike often have lines just like that, it doesn't set her apart very much either. Furthermore, because she's very similar to Twilight, the two have a somewhat uninteresting dynamic, and "Triple Threat" chooses to joke about their similarity rather than actually emphasize what differences exist in an amusing way. She does appear to have an easier time manipulating Ember and Thorax than Twilight does Thorax, and that amusingly reflects her past, but while that further sets her apart from Twilight, it doesn't really match the big gags which everyone else has, and she's not given very much to do in the back half either.

    Still, "Triple Threat" has plenty of moments, and while these mostly come from Twilight, Ember, and Thorax, Spike is also sympathetic and relatively charming, and it's just interesting to see another pony episode which deals with diplomacy, even if the novelty is starting to wear off. Despite the rote plot, the episode is frequently entertaining, and the combination of a delightful climax and not one but three great morals does at least a little bit to make up for the predictability. Thorax and Ember are two of the best characters she show has introduced in recent years, and their charms would have been enough to elevate the episode, but as always, it's Spike and his relatable insecurities which give his episodes their heart. Not the best episode, but solid.

    Score:
    Entertainment: 7/10
    Characters: 8/10
    Themes: 9/10
    Story: 4/10
    Overall: 70/100
     
    You can find more episode reviews at my offsite blog
  5. (This blog will be about the antagonist of my LoE/VKMK (Virin, Kelbas, Mothra and King Ghidorah) movie. Keep in mind, that this one is more evil than the main MLP villains.)

     

    Name: Kelbas

     

    Family: None (deceased by the series' start)

     

    Gender: Male (confirmed by the American people)

     

    Species: Collective Spirits of the Victims of WWII (currently), Irradiated Prehistoric Amphibious Reptile (formerly)

     

    Age: 65 million years old (prehistoric giant monster)

     

    Occupation: King of Evil and Terror

     

    Residence: Earth (before the transportation to the humanized Equestria)

     

    Enemies: Virin, Mothra, King Ghidorah

     

    Abilities: Atomic Breath (a lighter red colour), Energy absorption and projection, Spiral heat ray

     

    Weaknesses: Wounds from the inside (or from a powerful, combined blast of both fire and atomic breaths from Virin)

     

    Anti-Kelbas weaponry: Oxygen Destroyer (only on planet Earth; takes no damage from any man-made weapons)

     

    Length: 120 meters

     

    Height: 60 meters

     

    Weight: 30,000 metric tons

     

    Eye colour: White

     

    Skin: Dark gray

     

    On the back: Dorsal plates (from Godzilla)

     

    Status: Destroyed

     

    Personality: Malicious, evil, malevolent, wrathful, vituperative, cold, brutal, violent, destructive, heartless, cruel, perilous, obstreperous, ruthless.

     

    Origins (fully explained in the chapters, before it'll be coming here):

    Kelbas was a chaotic creature, who was the evil brother of Xeisan and Brandrun, that was killed by the Oxygen Destroyer in the years before Godzilla had awoken. Although people sees him as a creature of chaos, he is attacking only by instinct, or by a will to survive, as if doing destruction just by his nature.

  6. I got one of two new pony videos coming up. This is an updated version of my last one I did which was a top 5 favorites, this time, my favorite song from each season. My next after this will be me explaining what my top 5 favorite episodes are and why. 

     

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48mCCiyPPuo&feature=youtu.be

     

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    Recent Entries

    To start off my little series, I'll be following Applejack and what she learns in the episodes most central to her character. today we'll be looking over Applebuck Season

    Lesson: “While friendship is about giving of ourselves to friends, it’s also about accepting what our friends have to offer.”

    Take Aways: 

    When someone is trying to point out your flaws, you shouldn’t just blindly ignore them or get offended. Try to figure out why you’re doing what you’re doing, how it could be done better, and if you should even keep doing it. On the subject of character, there is no excuse for stubbornly staying stagnant. Accept help when you need it, and admit responsibility for your flaws.

    Be sure to sleep regularly.

    Even if you’re an expert at something-- even if you’ve been doing it for years and you know all the ins and outs-- don’t assume that your knowledge means you can do it on your own without fail. Fact of the matter is, you can’t do everything on your own. If you do, your method either stagnates, or you eventually start biting more than you can chew. Ask for help. Ask for advice. Ask for criticism. That’s how you grow.

    Your pride can not only hurt you, but your friends, family, and community as well.

  7. This will be about the movie sequels; Rainbow Rock, and Legend of Everfree: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack's antagonists.

  8. Two days ago, Sega released Sonic Mania digitally for the Switch, PS4, and XBox1. (The PC version's delayed till 8/29). But the manual's already posted.

    The focus is on Page 3 below:

    003.jpg

    Focus on the Motobug at the far right underneath Heavy Rider.

    The Sonic Mania Team (consisted of The Taxman, Stealth, and many others, many of them former Sonic fangame hackers from Sonic Retro) named him Jimmy and gave him identical move sets in honor of Polygon Jim, a Sonic fangame hacker who passed away in 2013. Jimmy was most known for creating a fan-hack of Motobug in Sonic 1.

    It might be my all-time favorite Easter Egg in any Sonic game. Excellent tribute, guys! ^^

  9. Rebellious
    Latest Entry

    Headshot of my oc Cailyn

    smile.png

  10. Celestial Flight
    Latest Entry

    Alright, so I've been thinking about this for a while, but there really is only one reason I came back on here, and that was to roleplay. but the number of members on here has dwindled drastically since I was on here last (late 2013/early 2014) and a lot of my roleplay ads get ignored. Not just that, but the roleplays I am/have been in, usually end up not lasting very long or just going stale. I'm also starting to feel not very welcome here, so I am thinking it may be for the best that I kind of take a lurker status hiatus, where I am simply on here to respond to pms with people who can only contact me on here and possibly respond to a game or two, but other than that, I won't be doing much. Besides, it's not like anyone here would really miss my presence anyway...

    Sincerely,

    A. Freak

  11.    So, on my excursion out of the house today, I felt some shopping was necessitated to ease recent stress. So, I went out to buy some new Yugioh cards, and good thing I did because it gave me some... just beautiful comedic material for you lovelies! Firstly I feel its important to post the whole card so that you all know, even those of you even less in the know of this Trading Card Game then I (and yes... I am pouring an awful lot of money into a game I don't understand how to play, Hey, I'm a shopaholic, so sue me!), that these are indeed... actual, genuine products & ideas somebody came up with and put on a physical item. Especially this first one here! Starting off strong I am!

     dr._frankenderp.jpg   Yes, yes this is pretty much the Ditzy-Doo of this franchise. Note, if you will, the three faces behind him of just...equally just, bags of garbage "evil" scientists that have preceded him in the world of these cards. His expression just sells it all the better! "C'mon! What do ya want from meh? Ah'm doin' the best I can with only one arm!" *Tooooooot!*                  That's going to be my headcannon for him. Those head whistles just go off randomly, like in the middle of an important presentation or while he's sleeping & he's just gotten so used to them that he won't know what your talking about if you point them out.

     And, if you're not aware by now, the Yugioh company does love its puns.

    Caninetaur.jpg   PUPPY!!!

      I know its probably computor made, but that is still gorgeous art! Super adorable & super intimidating at the same time! I'm surprised this isn't more of a thing! And speaking of taurs on cards, go look up the Leotaur while we're at it! Just a beautiful plume of a golden mane on him! (I got me a picture limit here, I can't throw 'em all up at once!) ...and speaking of beautiful fellows...

    Vivid_Knight-_SHSP-_EN-_R-1_E.png   OH, MAH, COD, BECKY!  Look! At those ears! They're. Just. So big n' bouncy!

      It's enough to make even me jealous, and I'm sure you all know how my ear-preening I do on my own time! Crimeinitly! I could get lost on those ears for days!

     And if there's another thing about me you haven't caught onto yet, Yeah, I am quite the furry too!

    Animals are important to me, you know? That's one of the reasons I was in there in the first place, to find me some good cards to build me a Beast deck, and I did succeed after all.

    Chow-_Chow-_Chan.jpg  I can just see him now. You ask him an incredibly important question, like the meaning or life, or if he wants din-din.

      He pauses... contemplates sagely for a full minute's pause while tapping his chin...  "Hmmmm...   ....   WARF!?" 

    I did also manage to find two of the seemingly famous Rescue Cat that is also super adorable along with its hardhatted comrades-in-fluffy-paws, the Rescue Rabbit & Rescue Hamster. Though, really, I don't know about that team's effectiveness. I would think that most cat owners would reluctantly agree that bounding to you in times of strife isn't exactly what their chosen pets are known for. But, well, a good team knows how to pick their battles and be the most efficient they can be! And so... please... gird yourselfs. For super-adorablitity... Seriously, you might hemorrhage a few organs out here... I warned you...

    emerging-emergency-rescute-rescue-macr-e                                                     I'd kill for that ferret.

      But, onto a different kind of cute! I'm sure some of you in the franchise likely know her by her fan art (No! Not "Dark Magician Girl!" Sheesh! Who prefers blonds anyway?) Here is!:

    Thunder_Nyan_Nyan-_TP6-_EN-_C-_UE.jpg    I shall name her "Josie, the Pussycat!"

     There's just something about her that gives me this mental image of her saying: "After this super awesome drum solo, I'm gonna do this cute little dance where I stick out my tushie!!! BFFS!"

    ...maybe I watch too much anime too, but... Huh, a redhead that doesn't almost completely terrify me & cause me deep concern for the well-being of anyone around her. Why do all the redheads have to be Tsunderes, am I right?

     But! Another thing I was in there was to find some way of playing the water attribute without playing a bunch of scary fishies. Fish are more food than friends in my honest opinion, and I'd prefer my chosen diet to not be seen consistently with three-foot teeth & head-mounted lazer cannons. Do think I reached a good compromise though! While I don't have enough yet, the Ice Barrier tribe seem to be truly formidible up in my own style!

    Warlockofthe_Ice_Barrier-_TF05-_JP-_VG.p

     And so too to go with it, think I found me an amazingly good mechanical companion to go with him! Because Imma Icy Bugger!

    Snowman_Creator-_ABYR-_EN-_C-1_E.png I don't know if you can tell...

     But there seems to be a very small gremlin of some sort behind the control panel... one who's cheeky grin seems to match the output of snowmen. As I've learned from a certain Doctor Who episode, if I was to have my own endless army of minions I would certainly pick snowmen! 

       By now, I feel certain you may have come to yet another conclusion about me. One I'm beginning to pick up on myself. See, if I'm to have my minions charging into my duels for me and repeatedly dying for my cause, even if its only theoretically metaphorically, I want them to be redeemable. Not some super-trumped up, misshapen, wormy demon or fiend that clearly is enjoying being used to hurt others. Sure, you know I have several dragon decks, a real good stone golem deck built for defense, but I like putting on the indomitable front to put off a siege. No, I like my army to know its all in good fun. Be it the Ghostricks who run on teasing your opponent into playing by your/their rules & aggravating them into a long game or the style & graceful elegance of the Melodius Divas & Performapals who are just simply there to put on a good performance & dazzling display whether or not the audience is willing to cut them any slack and let us win, its about having fun regardless the outcome! I want them to vicious in ability and fully capable of dishing out the hurt if it comes to it, but still more than capable of being both my & your friends! I want 'em cute! 

       ...then again, nagas & hydras and giant venomous snakes also slip into my consideration of "cute", so, didn't say I was completely infallible in that category!

       And don't get me wrong. I understand dabbling in the dark arts and weilding souleaters but... I like how the Amorphages theme but... just knowing those pictures exist is going to give me some vicious nightmares some day... I'd much rather not have my cards seek revenge on me & eat me alive in the off-chance that ever does happen!

     

                        ...Wait... is having a catgirl eat you alive any less terrifying than the giant tentacle demons doing it?

  12. Untitled-1.thumb.png.f478f1c3baedf327dda8758fd11972b6.png

    [Spoilers]

     

    Hello and welcome to Edgelord Academy™ where we talk about condiluted backstories, overly emotional ideals, psychotic behaviors, and sibling rivalries. Today's topic: self-inflicting injuries. If you're reading this, it probably means you've been accepted into Edgelord Academy™ by means of mistake or tampering. We only have one rule on our establishment: To type in blood red to express our innermost emotion. Without further ado, strap on your headphones and prepare to blare TDG or anything Linkin Park for maximum p l e a s u r e.

    As I mentioned above, today we're talking about the Queen of ALL EDGE. The one, the only, Tempest Caramel Chip Cherry Pie Shadow. Y'know, that one mare with the broken horn. Because bones don't regrow on your face, apparently. 

    I have a bone (ha) to pick with the people who write these backstories. While I don't really know what to expect from a well-developed backstory, something about Tempest's and Starlight's backstories prove to be really underwhelming motivation. Cutie marks take Starlight's friends, ok? What did you do for the rest of your life? Tempest breaks her face and her dreams of going to be a princess are spoiled, ok? While that's certainly a more realistic motivation when compared to Starlight Glimmer's evil plot, someone would figure she'd get over the fact her face is broken. 

    For those who haven't read the book and don't mind spoilers for something that won't be explained in the movie (at least, I doubt in detail), let me explain why Tempest has temper. 

     

    A long time ago, Tempest Shadow fell and broke her face while fighting a bear.

    Simple enough? The book explains they live somewhere in a village within the plains beneath Canterlot (so, around Ponyville), but my question is, didn't they have a hospital or someone who was proficient in medicine at the time? Couldn't Tempest have collected her broken horn AFTER it fell off and brought it to someone who could've fixed it? IT'S BONE; BONE GROWS BACK. While full regeneration isn't possible, I'm certain they could've bandaged it back together and let it heal after a good few months. Of course, that'd defeat the purpose of a villain, so she's gotta go venture to the desert for some odd reason and strike deals with the Storm King who, in the trailer, does not look very menacing. 

    I managed to blow through the book in a good 40 minutes or so. It's an interesting story and it's nice to get a more complete version of a character we have yet to be introduced to. (I wish I could've read the comics instead. . .) However, the book itself seemed a bit incomplete. If you plan on reading the MLP Movie Prequel novel, read it an hour before you go to see the movie. At least then it'd make more sense and feel like a sound timeline. Seriously, the book ends the second the movie begins. It was an enjoyable read, but it seemed very empathetic and monotone throughout. It was nice to see Tempest explore some of the lower regions of Equestria and the book even introduced some new cities and towns never seen before. Other than that, I read it merely because Barnes and Nobles had it and I was interested in seeing more from the movie. I doubt the book is necessary to understand the villain. If it is, I'll let you know whenever the movie comes around. 

    Short story even shorter, Tempest Shadow wants to be Celestia's student and become an alicorn but breaks her face and is forced to travel Equestria because she doesn't want to be embarrassed about her disability. She's also got some kind of PTSD? But it's more of an allergy to whenever somepony asks about her face (which only happens twice in the book). All you have to say is, "It broke in an accident", and no one would bother you again. Jeez, gotta make everything so dramatic, Tempest.

     

    If you want to read this book, try reading the comics instead (assuming they tell the same story).

     

    -Rebus

     

    I'm streaming a marathon of Ponies the Anthology on my rabb.it room on AUGUST 18th, 2017 at 6PM Cent, 7PM East. It's a Friday evening, so try to make it! As all Anthology movies, there's a bit of profanity that won't be censored; don't go if you're offended by f-bombs or whatever Anthology Team presents.

    https://www.rabb.it/Visualboy011

    Either way, thanks for reading and I'll be back with more eekwestreea grills tomorrow or the following afternoon. 

     

  13. First, the theme of the episode seemed excessive in the execution. But it's not exactly rare that the writers do that and go all the way, like here with what amounts to mass insanity, making one wonder why the mane 6's popularity never seemed to have been received like this before the book publishing.

    Second, the episode obviously conveys the point that if you adress the masses, better not let them know you too well and let you not know them too well. It's not desirable and not good, but sometimes the world can be tough as nails. But these situations are exactly where one has to decide to make an effort, to not just swim with the current, because the water stinks. Identify what is your sphere of responsibility and what is others and then avoid overextending. Going out of your way is commendable, but responses to that should be taken as indicators of whether it is appreciated.

    Which leads me to the third point: This episode could almost be seen as a critique of the MLP fandom (but also of society and fandoms in general). And it is also how I feel about it sometimes. People have all kinds of reasons for liking the show, but the probably most valuable and most-needed part is often not really taken to heart. Or mind, if you will. Actually making an effort to make the spirit of Equestria come to life not just in easy but especially also in testing times, through honing character, I often felt that missing, including after my observations and experiences at conventions. In spiritual lingo one would say "bliss junkies".

    The eventual song number took me a minute to thaw to because it was so bluntly thrown against the problem, and I could predict the (non)reaction to it (At one point I cynically thought that after it the rabble would probably ask for free concert tickets.), but it was a really nice, uplifting piece whose lyrics at times also felt to me like adressing the fandom. Felt a bit like a celebratory review to a last season actually, like a looking back at a long journey. Which made it even more touching. They also contained some headscratchers though. Do they really like what's flawed about people or do they have an easy time overlooking it when willingness to work on oneself is there? And Dashie's cocky confidence gives her the courage to fail? I thought she always had that and it was to not-quite cover up her fear of failure. (Little gem from me here: Failure is that which is at war with failure.)

    Very nice conclusion: Just accept that you cannot adress the masses with high virtue material and expect it to be integrated. Unsurprisingly then it was foals who were still open to it, and those who are are the ones deserving to receive your attention and energy.

    The episode is also art in that it offers people an empathic experience regarding the type of fans aimed at. Watching that mass insanity is painful, and you might go: "What warranted this suddenly?". That's how it makes the writers feel. When the mane 6 sing their beautifully uplifting song and then right after it - BAM - NOTHING received, that moment really sucked, right? You go: "This is becoming horribly cynical if not even an episode's highlight can solve the problem anymore". That is how it makes the writers feel. Over 20 minutes you are having their experience, so that you hopefully understand them and recognize the value of what's important about the show.

    And the end was conveying the lesson of how to avoid overextending. Did you notice Applejack was first in mentioning they need to deal with the problem at hand, and Twilight said she should stay in the friendship moment? Applejack sang in the song that she has a tendency of wanting to please everypony. The mane 6 there had to focus on their close friendship to recharge their spiritual batteries for a bit in the face of overwhelming hostility.

    I myself certainly had and still have to learn in a painful way that it is alright to give up hope on some people or to lose respect. It is a bow of appreciation to the good things in you that said people do not appreciate. They can eventually pick up the bread crumbs if they're lucky. They would just choke on more than that. Going all missionary on them would only feed the insatiable and signal that they have power over you, which is what the whole madness is based on. Sometimes it is wiser to let people stew in their own juice.

     

    P.S.: At this point I thought: Oh yeah, Dashie, REALLY skillful attempt at a disguise, especially for you. :twi:

    7x14_RD_great_disguise.jpg.ef64ef3214ed3967a4a6c136b9773a3b.jpg

     

    P.P.S. (Pinkie Pie scriptum):

    599270b150949_WinkiePieDowlphin.thumb.jpg.7a49a404649bac6fabb18cb520dea085.jpg

  14. *ahem* well this is a developer episode isn't it:

    Mane 6 = creators and developers of the show

    Fan ponies = the Brony fandom

    2 fillies = those that learned and the intended 7 year old audience.

    Hints that led to this discovery:

    Exhibit A- a pony yells, "are Pinkie Pie and AppleJack related or what"

    Exhibit B- Twilight says "I didn't realize our friendship lessons could lead to anti-friendship"

    Exhibit C- two fillies are young and learned something plus no fangasms.

    Anyways here is some explanations,

    So to begin I do not think this is a way to tell the fandom that the creators are annoyed or want to go back to their intended audience or anything, but it is a lesson for us all. The mane 6 try to make themselves more public with their lessons and it backfires completely...how so, fans form for the characters themselves and not the lesson kind of the way we do with our Mane 6 Fanclubs. There are even the haters of certain mane 6 characters and well the creators are tired of hearing complaining about certain things and then when they try to fix it to the fandom's wants we want them to go back because it failed miserably. If there is something that needs to be learned its that we ask for too much and want to surpass tv-y guidelines when the show can't. Then came the song (or explanation in this case) that once over the fan ponies were still arguing not caring about what the mane 6 (creators) are saying. We see the mane 6 (creators) get extremely stressed out and Twilight (the big boss) is the one to blame. Alright enough with this review...I'm just going to say this...

    WE NEED TO CHILL OUT, THESE PEOPLE ARE DOING THEIR HARDEST TO PLEASE US AND WE GET PISSED OFF BECAUSE ITS NOT WHAT WE WANTED, WELL GUESS WHAT, IT'S THERE SHOW THAT WAS ORIGINALLY MEANT FOR 7 YEAR OLDS AND WE TOOK THEM FOR GRANTED, ONLY CARING FOR THE CHARACTERS AND THE STORY OTHER THAN THE LESSONS THE SHOW IS TRYING TO TEACH...LESSONS THAT WE THROW AWAY TO ARGUE ABOUT HOW MUCH THIS EPISODE SUCKED BECAUSE THIS CHARACTER WAS IN IT AND THE PLOT WAS TRASH AND THE CHARACTERS NEED TO CHANGE AND BLAH BLAH BLAH...WE ARE ADULTS AND WE ARE ARGUING ABOUT A CHILDREN'S SHOW LITERALLY A CHILDREN ORIENTED SHOW. IF IT WASN'T FOR THE PEOPLE WHO WATCH THE SHOW AND LEARN THE SHOW WOULD'VE ENDED BY NOW AND GEN 4 WOULD BE GONE...THERE WOULD BE NO MOVIE THERE WOULD BE NO MORE MANE 6...

    *ahem* *fixes tie and red face goes back to its normal color*

    Okay now that I'm done ranting I am going to finish this on a high note,

    We need to let the creators do what they do and appreciate what they do for us, we need to stop complaining about Twilight's wings and Starlight and Sunset only there for money purposes...we take everyone for granted and don't appreciate its creation and continuation...I learned a lot from this episode literally a lot...it sucks knowing that the fandom is always at war with itself over the simplest and the dumbest things...we bully each other and lose focus of what we have...I actually enjoyed this episode a lot more than half of the episodes in the show because it was the developers way of telling us to chill out and let them do their job like we do ours as a fandom and keep the show going and making the developers happy to do the show. A lot of shows cancelled themselves and youtubers have quit because they lost the enjoyment of their job...do you really want the show to cancel itself and we never see the likes of MLP ever again...(stretching it)....but come on we all used to love each other and now, now we are in a civil war over every little thing...I loved this episode and hope to see more like it, keep up the good work MLP FIM the I have learned so much from you and appreciate you as a whole, from the creators to the show itself...I guess I should sign off but for once I'm just going to say...see ya next time.

  15. Afternoon everypony! After a far too long of a hiatus, I am happy to announce that the latest chapter of Batmare Begins, "Flint Meets Steel," is now officially up! If you're a first time reader of it, you can click here to get to the fic itself. A huge thank you to my long time followers for your patience and understanding, and I hope you very much enjoy the chapter! To any new readers, likes, favorites, and follows are always appreciated, and to all of you, as always feel free to leave comments below, especially if you yourselves have any questions, critiques, or suggestions! :proud:

    Lord willing, the next update will take far less time to put together, but I guess I can't say for certain seeing as real life business tends to always get in the way in some way or another. For now, I hope you enjoy this latest update, and thank you again for your continued interest in my story and characters, it's a huge part of what makes writing this all worth it to begin with. Have a good day everypony, until next time, this is Batbrony signing off! I'm off!!! *cue dramatic exit* :muffins:

    1209840__safe_artist-colon-segraece_derpy+hooves_princess+luna_bubble_female_mare_open+mouth_pegasus_pony_sitting_smiling_spread+wings_stars.png

  16. 412bfc988e736f2ff30acb2f02df4ec1968bdd94.png

    The night I've been waiting for all year. The night I finally see Metallica live! :D

    IMG_20170809_193330.thumb.jpg.3eeb89d83aca6cb595c9ba3a9e661303.jpg

    This is me. My hair's already messy from Avenged Sevenfold

    IMG_20170809_205312.thumb.jpg.a01840936b110e156dcbe83a1b228c9a.jpg

    The band performing the song "Atlas Rise!" from their latest album, Hardwired to Self Destruct. The stage is massive with a giant stylized M and A at each end.

    IMG_20170809_210230.thumb.jpg.999d8fb2f11ae2eaff3aff8a8e30dc31.jpg

    "The Memory Remains", this concert will be a great memory.

    IMG_20170809_212559.thumb.jpg.c9b3a8d46f706ed0b927a3bd07c5aa73.jpg

    Before performing "Moth into Flame," James Hetfield has to make sure his microphone is working, referring to what happened with Lady Gaga at the Grammys. 

    IMG_20170809_213627.thumb.jpg.e21a4ceaddad111b543a40aea195bc25.jpg

    Light show during "Wherever I May Roam"

    IMG_20170809_215139.thumb.jpg.41f5c5634c3f928ee5064acd62080d19.jpg

    Rob Trujillo performing "Anesthesia (Pulling Teeth)" while footage of the late Cliff Burton play in the background.

    IMG_20170809_220845.thumb.jpg.20f1e16ac0ffca089cf67c760e43a894.jpg

    Spectacular laser lights during "One."

    IMG_20170809_224548.thumb.jpg.924e72fbe1828a679b4f3fb2c229a4c9.jpg

    Pyro during "Battery" illuminating the stadium.

    IMG_20170809_225554.thumb.jpg.edb0b4cb5c30ff29e76ded25558d45b6.jpg

    James showing his #MetinSeattle guitar pick just before the last song.

    IMG_20170809_225658.thumb.jpg.f1cf426a9706cdb3de59a52222c7609e.jpg

    Fireworks going off during "Enter Sandman."

    Thank you, Metallica! ^_^:pinkie::D:yay::icwudt:B)

  17. I have been avoiding all movie spoilers with a meticulous level of dedication.  As soon as the first teaser was released, I began avoiding most pony content.  I stayed away from the forums for the most part, and I avoided watching anything pony related on youtube except for older things.  I was determined to be completely surprised.  I didn't want to know anything about the movie.  Absolutely nothing.  I wanted to walk into the theater completely blind and just be totally surprised.  But earlier today, I accidentally saw a thumbnail for a trailer.  That was to be expected, since I'm not going to completely avoid the internet.  (I mean, without youtube, what would I do all day?)  Upon seeing the picture, I was immediately and greatly disturbed.  I wouldn't have been bothered by it, because you can't tell anything about the plot from a thumbnail, but it was the animation style that upset me.  I had no idea that they were changing the appearance of the characters.  I mean, I had heard something about a new animation studio being used, but I just figured that it would improve the quality, not alter the actual character models.  I needed to know if this was really how they look in the movie, or if the thumbnail was misleading, so I clicked the trailer, left the sound off, paused it, scrubbed through a bit, and just click a few still frames so I could see what they look like without spoiling the plot.  Honestly, I am devastated by this new style.  I am shocked and horrified that they would actually change them like this.  They don't look right.  Not at all.  These aren't the characters I know and love.  I expected the movie to be upgraded and look fancier.  In fact, I wanted that, but I didn't want the basic shapes and models to be altered!  I just wanted some fancier lighting and depth.  Characters shouldn't be altered this way.  Take the Simpsons, for instance.  Now, completely disregarding the drop of quality of the content, the show never changed the way the characters looked, not even for the movie, and that was the right call.  The movie stepped up the game for lighting and made it look fancier, but the characters were still the same.  When you watched the movie, you felt like, "Oh, yeah, this is the Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie that I've always known."  But the ponies in this movie trailer look all wrong.  I expect franchises to evolve, JUST LIKE MLP DID, but not mid-generation like this.  You can't (rather, shouldn't) alter characters that we've come to know and love.  These just aren't the same ponies anymore.  They're fan art interpretations.

    Is this cool?

    598abcaa3ee87_MLP-Twilight.thumb.jpg.f9266bf68618c90e3f7450d0c89c2858.jpg

    Yes.

    And this?

    598abcc0df842_MLP-RainbowDash.thumb.jpg.bf8c2de99b0d799dde02e1db4391a563.jpg

    Again, absolutely.

    How about this?

    598abcc75a6f0_MLP-Rarity.thumb.jpeg.00969e14a898d8b4ca4b569bd6ae49b9.jpeg

    Heh, gotcha!  It's Ghostie!  (For all you old timers on the forums.) :lol: But seriously, again, it's awesome.  But I wouldn't want the actual show to look like any of these, because these are NOT THE ACTUAL CHARACTERS.  These are fan art interpretations.  And that's what this movie is.  Just a big fan-made youtube video.  And don't get me wrong, I love fan-made youtube videos.  But it's not the real characters.

    I am actually very sick over this.  Upset enough, in fact, that I don't know if I even want to go anymore.  And today I was planning on working on my skirt to finish my EG Rainbow cosplay that I was planning on wearing to the movie.  Now I don't even know if I want to see it.  This animation style change feels like a complete betrayal, a travesty of MLP.  Now, I'm still sane enough and rational enough to admit that the only reason I feel this way is because I'm a sick, sick person.  And I don't mean sick as in twisted.  I mean sick as in ill.  I'm autistic and clinically depressed.  (Heh, there you go, anti-bronies.  Have some ammo.  A fucked up person who couldn't fit into real life was drawn to ponies.  Surprise, surprise, huh?)  Now, I'm not telling you this to try to get attention, or to brag in some sick way about how screwed up I am.  I'm simply stating the facts.  I realize that I'm such a sick, sick person who is so miserable that I've placed an extremely unhealthy level of importance on this franchise.  I've used FIM as a crutch, sometimes to the point of being the only thing to keep me alive.  I built walls of ponies around myself to try to shield myself from the pain of my own existence.  When one has no self-worth and no confidence, it becomes horrifying easy to let fictional franchises become a tether that you attach your life to, even when you actively try to prevent that from happening.  If you let yourself become dangerously attached as I have, then it can come crumbling down at the drop of hat.  Escapism is a house of cards.

    I am pathetic, and this is my own pathetic problem.  I'm sure that my opinion is an incredibly unpopular one.  I just wanted to express it.  I am probably the only person who is bothered by this at all.  I just have to deal with this, and I don't know how.

  18. Yesterday, my father and I went to see the Western Illinois Threshers Inc. 50th Annual Show in Hamilton, IL. There were many old tractors, a couple oil pull threshers, some garden tractors, some automobiles, and a few Mack trucks. This website describes it more in depth: http://www.westernillinoisthreshers.org/

    Here is an Oil Pull thresher/tractor (being used to turn the belt for a sawmill that is outside of the picture).

    CORRECTION: This is an Advance Rumely steam tractor/thresher (being used to turn the belt for a sawmill).
    * I had been looking at the actual Oil Pulls in the rest of my photos and accidentally typed the incorrect information for this particular tractor in this photo. Anyway, I may as well also add that "thresher" is a name given to tractors that can be used to "thresh" wheat from the hay -  "thresh: to separate the grain or seeds from (a cereal plant or the like) by some mechanical means, as by beating with a flail or by the action of a threshing machine.

    *I have to give thanks to Linctex over on BobIsTheOilGuyForums for pointing out my mistake, as I had posted this same thing over there for my fellow gearhead buddies to see:

    https://bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php/topics/4480332#Post4480314


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    If you want to look at a plethora of pictures of old tractors, download this .zip file I uploaded here: 

    Threshers_at_Hamilton_IL_8-4-17.zip

    Backup link on Dropbox just in case: 

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/uywtb77pdpzzwjw/Threshers at Hamilton IL 8-4-17.zip
     

    Note: Both my father and I took photos with our own cameras. I wound up taking more photos, but didn't realize until after the fact that my camera lens was causing some minor distortion (blurriness) on the left 10% of the photo (due to deterioration of the polarized film or something on the lens's glass), but it's barely noticeable and doesn't ruin the photos at all, as the photos are 90% pristine and everything that's needs to be in focus is totally fine. Just a little bit of stuff on the very left of the pictures might be a bit blurry is all. My father's camera didn't have this problem, so his photos are all 100% fine, though he did take less than I did. Anyway, it's not a big deal.