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masque
06 November 2012 @ 05:49 am
I drink too much, I smoke too much, I don't take nearly as much care of my health as I should. I tend to make a fool of myself on occasion, (especially when I've indulged too much), and I'm awkward as fuck.

But I try to do the best I can, and fumbling through life though I am, I still give a shit about the world. What I do may be far from the ideal way to achieve whatever my current goals are, but I try to do the best I can. I am therefore broadly content with myself.

Off I go to vote (once they open in a few hours).
 
 
masque
Back in Houston, after the rough drive to Ithaca.  The DC stopover was cool, we just needed more time.  Flying solo for the first time, pretty much ever, When I moved out of my parents' house I had a roommate, and I went from that to married.  Will have to get used to that, but the more pressing need is to get all my own shit packed for the move into the one bedroom apartment next month.  Cat does seem to be adjusting up there, but it's only been a few days.  I'll see how this goes.
 
 
Current Location: work
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
Tunes: Lawrence Lessig, Republic Lost audiobook
 
 
masque
18 November 2011 @ 06:13 pm
You can learn a lot about someone by the music they listen to. Hit shuffle on your iPod or mp3 player and write down the first 20 songs. No cheating or skipping songs that are shameful. That is the fun!

01. Stephen Batchelor - Turning the Wheel of Dhamma
02. Front 242 - Kampfbereit
03. NOFX - USA-holes
04. Stephen Batchelor - The Tyrant and the Monk
05. Stephen Batchelor- Self and Society
06. Cypress Hill - Hand on the Glock
07. Cypress Hill - Highlife
08. Front 242 - Happiness
09. Stephen Batchelor - God and Buddha nature
10. Kim Stanley Robinson - Blue Mars, track 23
11. NOFX - One Million Coasters
12. Matt Ridley - Genome audiobook - Intelligence
13. Cypress Hill - Money
14. Richard Dawkins - The Greatest Show on Earth - Chapter 12, Arms Races and Evolution
15. The Birthday Massacre - Under the Stairs
16. Front 242 - Body to Body
17. Front Line Assembly - Aussgang zum Himmel
18. Front Line Assembly - The Blade (Worldwide Mix)
19. Weird Al Yankovic - Money For Nothing (Beverly Hillbillies)
20. Tool - The Grudge
 
 
masque
Part 2 of however many end up following it up:
(I forgot to post it here when I wrote it.)

 
 
masque
By no means is it meant to be authoritative, but I think it's a decent working hypothesis for me to base future work off of, especially as I seek to go back to school.

 
 
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
Tunes: Steven Pinker, The Better Angels of Our Nature audiobook
 
 
 
 
masque
27 September 2011 @ 04:30 pm
I'm masque1223.  I've changed the name of the other person so as to not incriminate them.  The link is to an article where a boy masturbated himself to death.
(03:49:23 PM) (name withheld): http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=pt&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.g17.com.br%2Fnoticia.php%3Fid%3D99%26fb_comment_id%3Dfbc_10150214316958803_17067945_10150215952628803%23f26f10622
(03:51:06 PM) masque1223: yeah, you've told me about it before, with a different link. i think it was you, anyway
(03:51:25 PM) (name withheld): yep
(03:52:29 PM) (name withheld): at my peak, I never even came close to that.
(03:53:35 PM) masque1223: well, the standard has been set.
(03:54:25 PM) (name withheld): fatally so
(03:55:45 PM) masque1223: well, the runner of the first marathon died, too. now thousands of people do so every year without major consequences. he just had an inadequate training regimen
(03:56:03 PM) (name withheld): LOL
(03:57:21 PM) masque1223: if the olympics can deal with synchronized swimming and figure skating, i see no reason why it can't include events to show off sexual prowess, in multiple categories
(03:58:44 PM) masque1223: it might even engender healthier attitudes towards sex and tolerance of those with some of the more creative predilections
(03:59:25 PM) masque1223: better than this kid dying in vain. let's make him a pioneer
(03:59:32 PM) (name withheld): and thanks to you, I just conceived of synchronized wanking as an Olympic sport.
(04:00:14 PM) masque1223: has more of a useful purpose than synchronized swimming, that's for damn sure
(04:00:21 PM) (name withheld): heh
(04:01:11 PM) (name withheld): that's it, the Pornlympics.
(04:02:13 PM) masque1223: nah, fuck that. besides, they already exist. no ghettos for sexual events. put them in the real olympics, make people acknowledge that it's just as athletic, and should be respected
(04:02:58 PM) (name withheld): The only difference is, winners finish last.
(04:04:47 PM) masque1223: in some events, sure. but i can see others where time isn't the only consideration. distance ejaculation, men and women's events. orgasm intensity, measured with brain scans. there's a whole swath of areas to excel at
(04:05:15 PM) (name withheld): Heh. "And he stuck the landing!"
(04:05:23 PM) masque1223: yep
(04:05:35 PM) masque1223: relay races could be fun
(04:06:06 PM) masque1223: i mean fuck, it's more traditional. the olympic games originally had competitors in the nude
(04:06:56 PM) (name withheld): too true
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
 
masque
15 September 2011 @ 04:42 am
In the next life, who or what do you think you’ll be reincarnated into?
On a long enough timescale, stardust.  For different values of "life" than those intended by the question, of course.

 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
Tunes: How the Universe Works on the Science Channel
 
 
masque
08 September 2011 @ 07:58 pm
Just gonna keep listing them until they're all sold:
http://www.ebay.com/sch/illuminatibooks/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_from=&_ipg=&_trksid=p3686
 
 
 
masque
30 August 2011 @ 04:14 pm
<sarcasm>Seriously, fuck that guy. Who is he to make me question my deeply held ethical convictions!? What a prick!</sarcasm>

I am becoming more and more sympathetic to the ethical arguments for vegetarianism, now that I've actually been exposed to them properly.  I don't know that I'll be able to pull off a full transition, but I'd already been considering an attempt at adopting a more Mediterranean diet for health reasons, so I'll start with that and see how it goes.  How to adjust what I shop for seems like it's going to be one of the biggest problems.
 
 
masque
24 August 2011 @ 09:31 am
I am selling off my occult library. I'm still in the process of listing them, but this link should work even before I'm done listing them:
http://shop.ebay.com/illuminatibooks/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_from=&_ipg=&_trksid=p3686
 
 
masque
18 August 2011 @ 04:31 am
I hate it when being honest to a friend may kill a friendship.
 
 
masque
15 August 2011 @ 03:06 am
Part 2: Longer but funnier.

http://orbitalteapotlaser.blogspot.com/2011/08/what-fool-this-mortals-been-part-2.html
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
masque
14 August 2011 @ 07:51 am
This isn't the first actual post on my new blog, but it's the first one that really matters. More to come as I get it typed up.

http://orbitalteapotlaser.blogspot.com/2011/08/what-fool-this-mortals-been-part-1.html
 
 
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
Tunes: Sisters of Mercy, Some Kind of Stranger
 
 
 
masque
I have the 2003 Limited Edition (not Deluxe, just limited), the first with an index. It is autographed by Christopher Hyatt and numbered, although I'm at work and can't recall the number offhand. I no longer need it, and am considering selling it. Any offers?
 
 
masque
1 Cocktail glass, preferably the kind with a round base and then a column that tapers out. (My glasses come from the Houston Aquarium restaurant and BAR, if anyone actually cares. We have 8 of them, largely due to poor judgment.)

Fill round part with ice.

Fill round part with Mountain Dew (roughly 1/4 a can).

Add a shot of Captain Morgan Black Cask (100 proof).

Add a splash of Rose's blue raspberry mixer, until the rum and dew and the Rose's makes a nice blue-green color.

Add a shot of vodka (I use Monopolowa potato vodka, kept in the freezer).

Add a splash of Maraschino cherry juice, basically however much you feel like.

(Optional: add a splash of pineapple juice, however much you like. Optional because I didn't have pineapple juice when I made the originals, but now I use it, and it is pretty damn awesome.)

Top off with more Mountain Dew. (maybe another 1/4 of a can?)

Throw in as many maraschino cherries as you feel like (5-7 for me, but I really like them.)

Garnish with a slice of orange and pineapple, if you can be arsed to do so, and have cocktail swords or umbrellas on hand.

Enjoy.



For those wondering, it's called Keith's Sonic Screwdriver because I invented it while watching last week's episode of Doctor Who.
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
masque
29 May 2011 @ 06:33 am
Re-reading Hermetic Magic, I got to the part where Dr. Flowers explains his progression of vowels up the tree, leading to the Crown (Stephanos, heh), and that was frustrating me because I don't like the shape of his tree, and I don't like the path his vowels take, either. Either late last night or early this morning I figured out a way to use my preferred paths and allow the vowel path to lead to the Crown. Basically, I have a Middle Pillar path of A, E, and H, then starting from Eros I and O make a left hand path via Sophia, and Y and Ω make a right hand path via Nous. This way, I have 3 vowel paths, symmetry, and Gnosis is centered nicely between the trident ascendents.
I also like how the alternate O sounds are the ones that veer off, along with the long vowels I (ee) and Y (uu). I will simply assign the consonants in order in the blank paths, as I work my way up.

Perhaps it's not as elegant, mathematically, as Dr. Flowers' version but aesthetically, it suits me much better.

(Note: Dr. Flowers' version is slightly different from the one I posted the other day, he switches Sophia and Nous, renames Agathosyne to Eros, Arche to Stephanos, and Themelion to Arche Aionas. The description above refers to that version, for now. Eventually, I'll have a really nice version of my final form drawn up, at which point I will post a picture.)

Otherwise, I continue to do additional research, have been reading some of the Enneads and Corpus Hermeticum online at http://www.hermetic.com , those will have to do until I can get my hands on more authoritative translations, and later, versions in the original Greek.
 
 
masque
24 May 2011 @ 01:14 am
I have been getting back to the basics of magical practice, refreshing my memory and my skills, and reconsidering various things. I started out very basic, going back to doing the LBRP every day when I woke up and before I went to bed, but it bothered me. I switched to the Gnostic Pentagram Rite from Peter Carroll, but it's too abstract. While I know that the Qabalistic stuff is pretty syncretic, I really don't like using all the Hebrew godnames, and frankly, I've never been a fan of the language, either.

The main thing, of course, is that I don't believe in YHVH, and if I did, I'd hate him. I think the religions based on that entity are fairly toxic in general, and while all 3 do have useful, mystical traditions associated with them, it's trivial to show evidence that those mystical traditions are pagan in nature, generally going back to philosophical explorations that are mostly Greek. They're not all Greek, of course, there's Egyptian, Roman, a whole bunch of stuff from the various different peoples that have lived between the Tigris and Euphrates, but they do seem to all have a non-monotheistic origin, and the majority of classical (as in pre-medieval) materials that have survived and influenced modern magical practice are Greek, and therefore the Greek will be my focus.

I first read Hermetic Magic by Stephen Flowers years ago, before first joining the Temple of Set. I'm re-reading it along with a few other books. I had forgotten about it, but he includes an alternate Tree of Life in there, with 24 paths rather than 22, so that they correspond to the Greek alphabet. I don't know if he created it, or just found it. It's kinda thrown in the book without much comment, but it's stuck in my head.



I also found it here:
http://www.crcsite.org/GreekKabala1.htm
I haven't read the whole series yet, and it gets into a lot of the Christian stuff I'd like to avoid, but I still will finish reading it at some point.

I like that image, but I think for my own uses I'd restore 3-6 and 2-6, removing 8-10 and 7-10 to compensate. That gives me some nice nested hexagrams (unicursal and traditional) and pentagrams (averse and upright) in the top section there. I haven't worked out all the meanings of doing so yet, but I'm working on it.

So anyway, in addition to renewing my active work, I'm also apparently engaged in some Greek reconstructive work. So far, LBRP wise, I have replaced the Qabalistic Cross in my own practice with Sam Webster's Quantum Cross, which can be found here:
http://www.osogd.org/library/biscuits/milkStars.html
I like his whole rite, but at this point I don't feel like replacing all the Yahwist baggage with Thelemic baggage, even if I do consider myself at least mostly sympathetic with Thelemic goals. I'm just trying to get back to the pagan roots right now, so I'm just stealing the first part. Right now, for my daily praxis I'm doing that in combination with the pentagrams from Carroll's GPR, vibrating IEAOU while drawing them, and that's ok for now, but my goal is a full reconstruction of the LBRP, eventually.

The rest of this is a list of resources I've found while researching all this. By necessity of brokeness, all my research has been online so far, although I'm also re-reading Flowers' Hermetic Magic, I'm getting around to reading Garth Fowden's The Egyptian Hermes, and I plan on purchasing Keiren Barry's The Greek Qabalah when the books I have on eBay sell. The rest of this is just a big linkdump, mainly for my own reference, but open for comments for anyone else interested.
Beginning of Greek Qabalah series from the Rosicrucian Archive:
http://www.crcsite.org/GreekKabala1.htm
The Ancient Greek Esoteric Doctrine of The Elements:
http://web.eecs.utk.edu/~mclennan/BA/AGEDE/index.html
Lots of Wikilinks:
Sepher Yetzirah:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sefer_Yetzirah#Gnostic_elements
Marcosian Gnostics:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marcosians
Isopsephy:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isopsephy
Papyrae Graecae Magicae:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_Magical_Papyri
Corpus Hermeticum:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corpus_Hermeticum
Plotinus:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plotinus
Neoplatonism:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neoplatonism

And then some others I found:
Free Greek lessons online:
http://www.kypros.org/LearnGreek/
A work in progress, apparently, but looks like it will become useful soon:
http://isopsephy.com/
Always fun, has tons of material, including the PGM, The Corpus Hermeticum, The Enneads, and even versions of that Sam Webster stuff I posted:
http://hermetic.com/

That should be plenty for now.
 
 
masque
18 May 2011 @ 09:53 pm
Paperback of the first version of Perdurabo, Richard Kaczynski:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200609929695&ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT
Paperback Book of Sacred Magic of Abra-Melin the Mage, Abraham of Worms:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200609930257&ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT
Paperback Book of Ogham, Edred Thorsson:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200609933664
 
 
 
 
 
masque
25 February 2011 @ 04:16 pm
I smoked my last cigarette unceremoniously last night.

I could have made a big production out of it, bought another pack and waited to quit until a more portentious time, but fuck it, the addiction isn't worth all that.

I haven't been a really heavy smoker for a long time, for the last 7 years or so I've averaged a pack every 2 to 3 days, although more when I'm being social and drinking (drinking alone does not increase my cigarette consumption significantly). So it shouldn't be too big a deal to quit, I have done it before a couple of times, and mostly started back up out of boredom at work.

This is day one without a cigarette, and I am experiencing the illusion of cravings. I know that the cravings are illusions, because I had one of my yearly bouts with bronchitis a few weeks ago, and while that was going on, I went at least 5, maybe 6 days without smoking, with no cravings whatsoever. So the slight craving pangs I'm getting right now are not physical, they are psychological, because unlike a few weeks ago, my intention is to quit, so the reptile brain or whatever part of me is responsible for addiction is starting to panic.

So what I'm doing is amusing myself with the notion of meta-addiction. There is an addiction that I'm fighting, if a relatively minor one, but rather than let withdrawal actually bother me, I have adopted a pseudo-dissociated perspective, and have chosen to amuse myself by observing the onset of withdrawal behavior as if I was an outside observer. I have never used this tactic before, but right now, it does seem to be working, so I'm going to ride it out, and hopefully the utility of it will hold for the two weeks that seem to be the agreed upon consensus to kick the habit.
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
masque
18 February 2011 @ 05:03 am
 
 
masque
09 February 2011 @ 03:53 am
I'm selling off a chunk of my library, books my wife and I (mostly me) no longer need or want. I still have a handful to add, but the biggest chunk is done, thanks to the bookmobile app on my android phone. The list can be perused here:
http://books.google.com/books?uid=15360845624240335856&as_coll=0&source=gbs_lp_bookshelf_list
Generally speaking, I'm looking to sell at 25% of the cover price, but that is negotiable, especially for people buying a lot of books. Either comment to claim books, or email me at:
nyarlathotep23 at gmail dot com.

Also, here's what's available that's not on the Google list:
Full Runa-Raven list (plus out of print Llewellyn titles) with prices:
Llewellyn titles:
Book of Ogham, Edred Thorsson (first edition), retail $12.95, my price, $3.25
Northern Magic, Edred Thorsson (2nd print), retail $12.95, my price, $3.25
Rune Might, Edred Thorsson, (3rd print, signed, albeit "For Keith")
retail $9.95, my price, $2.50

Other titles:
Magic of the Norse Goddess, Karlsdottir, retail $20, my price, $5
Studia Germanica, Flowers, retail, $17, my price, $4.25
Rune-Poems Vol. 1, Flowers, retail, $17, my price, $4.25
Wendish Mythology, Flowers, retail $9, my price, $2.25
Johannes Bureus and Adalruna, Flowers, retail, $11, my price, $2.75
Rune-Song (plus tape), Edred, retail $20, my price, $5
Synagogue of Satan, Przybyzewski, retail $15, my price, $3.75
1957 Mabinogion hardcover, Gwyn Jones tr., $4
Gideon Bible hardcover, $1
Simon Necronomicon paperback, $1
von Eschenbach, Parzival paperback, $2
LaVey Satanic Bible paperback, $1
1918 Morals and Dogma Scottish Rite Masonry hardcover, $5
Lewis, The Screwtape Letters paperback, $1
Portable Nietzsche paperback, $2
Wilkinson, Symbol and Magic in Egyptian Art trade paperback, $5
Time Machine 11, Mission to World War II, $1
Adams, Life, the Universe, and Everything, $1
Adams, So Long and Thanks For All the Fish, $1
Rice, Interview with the Vampire, $1
Zukav, Dancing Wu Li Masters, $1
Houston Texans 2007 and 2008 Media Guides, $1 each
San Diego Chargers 2008 Media Guide $1
Boeke and De Benedetti, Gameface, Kickass Guide for Women Who Love Pro Sports, $4
Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy 3 part graphic novel adaptation, $6 for all 3.
 
 
 
masque
25 December 2010 @ 04:24 am


 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
masque
25 December 2010 @ 03:56 am
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
masque
25 December 2010 @ 12:40 am
hail santa
 
 
masque
24 December 2010 @ 04:06 pm
Lebowski-Jesus-Banner
 
 
masque
12 December 2010 @ 10:46 am
EBay  
Selling some stuff, check it out if you're interested:

The Silmarillion, JRR Tolkien, hardcover:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200553637192&ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT

INWO Subgenius, still in original plastic:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200553639453&ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT

Book of Lies, Brad Meltzer, hardcover:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200553640301&ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT
 
 
 
masque
10 October 2010 @ 02:20 am
Browsing Hulu at work, found the complete runs of two of my favorite shows:
http://www.hulu.com/black-books
http://www.hulu.com/spaced
If you wanted to know what the cast of Shaun of the Dead did before they made that movie, here ya go.
 
 
masque
13 September 2010 @ 10:26 pm
I'm not having a problem with the crossposting thing that people seem to be ranting about, but I know some people are jumping ship to Dreamwidth from LJ. I have no plans to leave LJ, but I did create a DW account so I can track those who do leave and still read their posts. If someone on my FL either leaves, or just has a DW account, please let me know, and I'll add you to my circle over there. Thanks.
 
 
masque
06 September 2010 @ 04:04 am
This will be mostly of interest to my gaming group, it's an email I'm reposting here for archival purposes. People are free to comment regardless, I'm open to input.

The next campaign will be using a mix of the Basic Fantasy and Dark Dungeons retro-clones which together do a fine job of emulating the BECMI/Rules Cyclopedia D&D feel that I'm going for. I'm planning on starting it off with Keep on the Borderlands, and from there expand into other Mystara stuff, although I'm sure I'll also be inventing my own material and cribbing from other sources like A Pirate's Guide to Freeport. No rush on that, however, as Keep on the Borderlands is a pretty full campaign in its own right. I was also considering running it with Tunnels & Trolls, but while I love me some T&T, converting the Keep would be a bit more involved, and T&T, while old school, has a different feel to it than old school D&D, which is more what I'm interested in running at the moment. I'm now going to lay out what changes I will make to the Basic D&D rules in this campaign:

Basic Fantasy already has certain options built in like a separation of races (dwarf, elf, halfling and human) and classes (cleric, fighter, mage, thief). It also uses ascending AC. I'm mostly indifferent to whether we use ascending or descending AC. If I have a preference, it's for descending AC, simply because that's what is already used in The Keep and the other modules in my possession, but if the majority wants ascending AC, that's fine, it should be trivial to convert THAC0 to ascending AC.

We'll also need to decide if we want to use Basic Fantasy's simpler combat, or the slightly more involved one in Dark Dungeons, as it uses the optional weapon proficiency system from the Rules Cyclopedia as the default system.

I'm definitely going to keep the race/class separation, as it allows for a little more variety. The only restriction is that dwarves and halflings can't be mages, but the other classes are open. Also, humans and elves can combine fighter and mage if they want to go through the trouble of doing so and are willing to pay the combined XP costs of both classes.

If people want to play druids or monks (mystics, in the terminology used in the book), we can probably work something out, but both of those are pretty rare in the setting, being fairly specialized, and I'm trying to keep it as simple as possible. As far as I'm concerned, both of those can probably be settled narratively with the roleplaying itself, rather than crufting it out mechanically (druid being an elven cleric, a monk being a specialized thief, that kind of thing).

The whole reason I'm enamored of this kind of old school game is that the rules are pretty simple overall, and one can wing all the fancy stuff that later iterations seemed to have the need to quantify and codify into millions of feats and thousands of fiddly little rules for every situation. If there is an actual benefit in play, such as the added flexibility of my alternate magical system below, great. If it can be hand-waved mechanically with little impact, I'd prefer to do so.

XP progression: The demi-humans get various special abilities and bonuses, humans don't get those but do get a 10% bonus to XP earned via the Basic Fantasy book, so that's different enough that I'm fine with just figuring level progression by class. I will, however, be using the DD XP progression charts for the expedient reason that they're not a whole lot different (slight variations between clerics and thieves, fighters and mages are identical), and the DD chart goes to level 36, whereas the BF one goes to 20. Also, I will be using 1GP=1XP, with the understanding that the XP for gold doesn't kick in until the gold is stowed safely post- adventure, not as soon as one obtains it. The XP from gold is also the only XP that human characters will NOT get the 10% bonus on, everyone shares in the loot the way that the party decides to divvy it up.

The biggest change to the rules as written is that I will discard the asinine Vancian spell memorization scheme and replace it with an alternate mana system. In terms of actual spell availability, it will roughly correspond to the spell level slots in the regular system, I will just assign a certain mana cost per level, and let the mages or clerics decide how they want to spend them. The mages will still need to learn the spells they want to be able to cast individually, whereas the clerics will have them granted by their associated deities (meaning that they'll have more available as a rule), but since they won't need to be memorized or pre-cast and the mage spells tend to have more combat utility, I don't see this as a major problem. For the mages, when they level up, they'll be able to channel more mana and learn more spells roughly equivalent to the old default slot system, and those spells will come as part of the leveling process. The mages will be free to learn additional spells at other times, they'll just have to lay out the cash to do so. The clerics' corresponding mana-channeling (or however we justify the ability in game) will also go up as they level, they just won't be able to add to their repertoire of spells beyond what their deities are willing to give.

For example, under the old system, a 1st level mage could cast 1 first level spell at 1st level, 2 first level spells at 2nd level, 2 first and 1 second level spell at 3rd level, etc. Under the new system, what are now known as first level spells would cost 1 mana, second level spells 2 mana, and therefore instead of futzing around with slots, a mage gets 1 mana at first level, 2 mana at second level, 4 mana at third level, etc. This has the nice side effect of reducing the confusion between character level and spell level, as the spells will just have a mana cost to worry about, and the mage is free to spend his mana how he wishes. The clerics have a different progression, but it will convert the same way.

The other reason for my choosing to use Basic Fantasy and Dark Dungeons is that they are both completely free to download, and if one does choose to purchase a hardcopy of them, they are priced at cost, the creators have provided these as a labor of love, and have no desire or need to make money off of them, so they are very affordable. Here are the links:

Basic Fantasy site with downloads:
http://www.basicfantasy.org/main.html
Print:
http://stores.lulu.com/basicfantasy

Dark Dungeons site with downloads:
http://darkdungeonsblog.wordpress.com/
softcover:
http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/dark-dungeons-softback/10992734
hardcover:
http://www.lulu.com/product/hardcover/dark-dungeons-hardback/10992864

I own them both in hardcover, but I'm a collector. B-)
 
 
masque
05 September 2010 @ 06:11 pm
I am coloring in the numbers on my onyx black Gamescience dice with the vintage white crayon from my Mentzner Red Box D&D set. It's 1983 in my house right now.
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
Tunes: Rocky Horror Picture Show Soundtrack, Don't Dream It, Be It
 
 
masque
14 June 2010 @ 05:08 pm
Go to newsweek.com and type in the Konami Code (up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, b, a) and then hit your enter key.  Use the arrow keys for the directions.

check this out after doing the aboveCollapse )
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
 
masque
18 May 2010 @ 07:53 pm


 
 
 
masque
18 April 2010 @ 08:34 am
At some point within the next 2 weeks (depending on when my loan money gets deposited) I will be the owner of a black 2009 Nissan Altima Hybrid. Anyone want to buy a used red 2000 Nissan Frontier cheap? It needs some body work, and has an intermittent A/C problem, but still runs just fine, engine wise.
 
 
Current Mood: excitedexcited
 
 
 
masque
01 March 2010 @ 05:19 pm
20 years ago today, the Secret Service conducted their infamous raid on SJG headquarters, seizing, amongst other things, the text of GURPS Cyberpunk, which while not the target of the raid, was considered by the MORON agents a "handbook for computer crime". After a long drawn out process, SJG sued and won their case against the SS. This incident was also a major impetus behind the foundation of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).

So go out and celebrate (not the raid itself, but the eventual victory) by playing some Hacker or other SJ games, or donate to the EFF. It's stick it to the (cyber)man day!

SJG's account of the raid.

EFF website
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
Tunes: I Fought the Law
 
 
 
 
masque
21 January 2010 @ 04:11 pm
Can someone tell me how to force the entries on my friends page to all use the same font, with the S2 format system? I've been trying to do it, but I can't find the option I need.
 
 
Current Mood: annoyedannoyed
Tunes: NOFX, The Decline
 
 
masque
03 January 2010 @ 09:56 pm
For those who like to make apologies for the Civil War and claim that the real cause was "states' rights", not owning people, I call bullshit.

The document in that link, "A declaration of the causes which impel the State of Texas to secede from the Federal Union.", published February 2, 1861, clearly lays out (along with similar documents published in South Carolina, Georgia, and Mississippi) that slavery is the cause, that states' rights are a PROBLEM for the South, especially when Northern states use their states' rights to neglect to enforce bullshit like the Fugitive Slave Law, rather than following the Federal Laws that the slave states would prefer, and then of course there is the expected (but still appalling) bigoted statements about the superiority of the white race over that of the African.

States' Rights is a bullshit dodge. If someone wants to point out the differences in economic bases between the North and the South at the time, and mention how most of the Southern soldiers didn't own slaves and were just stupidly following their leaders the way most people do, fine, I'm with you on that. I'm not out to condemn people's ancestors (most of mine came over via Ellis Island after the Civil War), but quit making the states' rights argument. It's crap.

Edit: My phrasing was bad. The cause of the secession was slavery, not states' rights. The cause of the war was the US government's unwillingness to allow the South to secede peacefully.
 
 
Current Mood: irritatedirritated
Tunes: Worker's Song, Dropkick Murphys
 
 
masque
25 December 2009 @ 09:31 am
I found a recipe online, but I've changed it up a bit, so here's my variation on it.

Scotch Eggs

2 pounds Owens country sausage
1 can Caledonian Kitchen lamb haggis
2 teaspoons crumbled dried sage
1 teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
.5 teaspoon cayenne
12 hard-boiled large eggs
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 raw large eggs, beaten lightly
2 cups fresh bread crumbs (I used Progresso Garlic and Herb breadcrumbs, but use whatever you like)
Minced Onions
Minced Garlic
Worchestershire Sauce
1 quart vegetable oil for deep-frying the eggs
1 slotted spoon

print a shopping list for this recipe
Preparation

Hard boil 12 large eggs, then shell them. Duh. Put them aside for now.

In a large bowl combine well the sausage, haggis, sage, thyme, and cayenne pepper. Throw in as much minced garlic and onion as you like (I like a lot), and then shake a shitload of worcestershire sauce into it. Me, I figure there's no such thing as too much worcestershire sauce. The haggis, when it comes out of the can is kinda dry, looks like dog food, actually, so I figure the extra worcestershire helps it mix well with the pork.

Get a pan or a cutting board, anything to hold the meat that isn't too sticky. What I do is just make 12 balls of the meat, and I flatten them as I go through the process of wrapping them around the eggs. Put your flour and your breadcrumbs into ziploc bags, and beat the 3 raw eggs like they owe you money. Leave them in a bowl or whatever you prefer.

Get your pot going with the oil in it, I use a deep saucepan, same that I use to make meatballs with sauce, the kind with 2 handles on the side, maybe 4 or 5 inches deep. I dump a full quart bottle into the pan. You only need this on medium heat at best, I had it hotter than that and after a while, on the 2nd or 3rd pair of eggs, it melted my goddamn plastic spoon. Next time I make them, I'll get a metal spoon first, but once I lowered the heat, to medium first, and then medium low, the eggs still cooked fine, if a little slower, but my second spoon survived the process.

This next part is messy as fuck. You may want to have some water going in the sink so you can rinse the egg and flour off of your hands throughout the process.

Take one of your sausage balls, flatten it with a bit of a depression in the middle, grab a hard boiled egg, and wrap the sausage around it fully. You'll probably have to work it a bit, making sure gaps don't develop on the other side. It's not really a problem, taste wise, if you leave some egg exposed, but it hurts the presentation of the finished product. Throw your meat encased eggs into the flour bag (I usually do 2 at a time) seal the bag, and bounce them around until fully coated by flour.

Open the bag, grab one of the balls, shake off the excess flour, and put it in the bowl with the beaten eggs. This is the messy part. Roll the egg around until it's covered with egg. You'll likely put some finger dents in the ball, but just roll it around in your hand and you're fine. Once it's completely coated with egg, shake off the excess, and throw it in the bag with the breadcrumbs. Again, I usually do 2 at a time this way. As with the flour, seal the bag, roll it around until you have a nice complete layer of breadcrumbs, and then put it on the slotted spoon and drop the whole thing into the oil. I usually cook 2 at a time.

When cooking the eggs, what I do is I lower them into the oil with the spoon, and give it a little wrist flick to flip it around and get the entire thing coated with oil. Once I have 2 of them in the pot, I periodically flip them around, so that all sides get even heat. When the whole thing starts to get a dark reddish color, it's probably done. You can actually let it go in the oil until the exterior is black, it doesn't really hurt the taste any, it just isn't as pretty. When they're done, I just pick them out with the spoon and put them on a plate with paper towels on it to soak up the excess grease, which is surprisingly little.

At any rate, repeat until you have 12 completed Scotch eggs. Supposedly they're traditionally eaten cold, but I personally prefer them warm, with brown horseradish mustard (Boar's Head deli mustard for the win). They do keep pretty well. I usually chow down on 2 right when I make them, and throw the rest in the fridge. I cut them in half and nuke them for a minute when I want one, and that seems to be all they need.

One of these days I'll make a batch up and then slice them all open and devil the yolks, but I haven't tried that yet. Just making regular Scotch eggs is a big enough pain in the ass (but so deliciously worth it) that I'm sick of the kitchen by the time I finish.
Tags: ,
 
 
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
Tunes: Fairytale of New York, The Pogues
 
 
masque
22 December 2009 @ 04:17 pm
 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
 
 
 
masque
14 December 2009 @ 11:44 am
I have canned haggis (no one I've found sells fresh in Houston) and single malt Scotch. I got a few cans of haggis, I figure I'll cook one up as is, and use the other two mixed with sausage to make Scotch eggs with. I guess I'll also figure out how to make mashed turnips and whatnot.
 
 
Tunes: Real MacKenzies Scots Wha'hae!
 
 
masque
05 December 2009 @ 02:17 pm

scotch eggs
Originally uploaded by keithjnielsen
My first ever batch of Scotch eggs. Delicious.
 
 
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
Tunes: Fields of Athenry, Dropkick Murphys
 
 
masque
04 December 2009 @ 11:28 pm
I'm finally writing again, collaborating on a project with my brother. I'll write, he'll draw, we both plot. Not gonna give too many details at the moment while it's still in the early design and rough draft phase, but it will involve zombies and pizza delivery.
 
 
Current Mood: excitedexcited
Tunes: Braveheart soundtrack
 
 
masque
11 November 2009 @ 02:06 am
So, I'm laying in bed this afternoon, still kinda half-dozing since it's before 2pm and I don't need to get ready for work until 4:30, and suddenly in my head I hear a distinct male voice that I don't recognize say:

HEY!

forcing me to shoot straight up, wide awake, unable to go back to sleep.

I hate it when that happens.

 
 
Current Mood: amusedamused
Tunes: Marilyn Manson, Cruci-Fiction in Space
 
 
masque
19 October 2009 @ 04:50 am
I am embarking on an experiment.

I am going to watch all 7 seasons of Beavis and Butthead back to back, and then listen to Gwar's entire discography. I have no idea what the result will be. I'm kind of curious to see if I can make my head explode like Michael Ironside's victim in Scanners, but that's probably too much to ask for.

Internets! Bring on the Deep Hurting!
 
 
Current Mood: indescribableindescribable
Tunes: GWAR, The Road Behind, from Episode 1 of B&B