A thousand years christina perri lyrics
No matter all the other issues with some wuxia c dramas, my biggest issue is how a lot of these c dramas have a rushed ending.
2023.04.01 15:21 silveryfeather208 No matter all the other issues with some wuxia c dramas, my biggest issue is how a lot of these c dramas have a rushed ending.
I don't know if it's story telling style or what but I hate how there's a big epic battle or something and then one character dies. One thousand years later... He or she comes back. No explanation. Like in the show it never really explains how reincarnation happens or whatever. And then. Boom he or she is back.
I just wish these type of c dramas give us maybe at least an episode of explaining how she or he gets the dead one back. And then maybe one episode to show us their life after rather than just like one second of them seeing each other. Not even a kiss.
It does give me so much to long for...
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2023.04.01 15:20 Jonseroo The Uncanny Valley
Forty years ago I saw a man killed by a garbage truck. When I tell people that they imagine him being crushed by the mechanism inside it, and then I explain that it was a car crash, and they are awkwardly relieved, although the man was just as dead. Slow crushing is macabre, whereas a traffic accident is a violent death but a familiar one, and not shocking, unless it happens in front of you. When it happened in front of me there was a woman there who was more brave than me and went to help him, but it was too late, his head just lolled back in his seat and then she hurried away. I don't know what she saw. I kept walking. I was only a teenager. People say, "It was like a car crash, I couldn't look away." You must learn to look away, as I did. But sometimes it is harder to look away. There are things that are worse and more darkly fascinating to look at than a car crash, things that seem commonplace or mundane at first but that are openings, portals which tempt our imagination, yet are dangerous to delve in. Look away. Look away now. Don't even read this.
And yet you are still reading? I promise you will regret that. I can say with absolute certainty that you will regret having read every line on this page when you get to the bottom.
We went to the supermarket today. My wife and I. There was something there. Well, of course. There were many things. It's a shop full of things. And people. But there was also SOMETHING. As we walked in we both saw it. There was a man squatting down to examine a shelf of items. I thought at first that they were pot plants? I don't know for certain. I was so focused on the man that I had no peripheral vision. He had his back to us. After we'd passed him we both remarked upon what we had seen. But my wife was luckier than me. The way our marriage works is that my wife has one job, her actual paid job, and I do all the other stuff like the housework, the childcare, house repairs, feeding the cats, mowing the lawn, and patiently listening to my wife endlessly complain about being the only one with a job. Ha. That's just my little joke, like we're friends, me and you, and I am telling you a funny story, rather than what I am really doing. Laughter is so genuinely human. Let's just enjoy a frivolous moment together first. Like the calm before the storm. Before I tell you something that I can guarantee you won't find funny, something that will make you curse me for telling you, as if I am not already cursed by the events of today.
When I realized we had forgotten to pick up a trolley on our way in I knew that our division of labour meant that it was my allotted role to go and get one from OUTSIDE. I had to walk past him again, which was okay, I guess, because I only had to see him from the front. He wasn't scary from the front. From the front he was just a person.
But pushing the trolley back into the supermarket I had to put on my bravest face to walk past him again, FROM BEHIND. I had to see it again. I saw the thing. I am still seeing the thing.
I have seen some gristly things before this. On construction sites, where men with loose clothing become nonchalent around machinery. Even plumbers and electricians are sometimes less than careful to make sure everything is tightened and secured safely. Or men working on roofs, inured to the drop beneath them, and oblivious to each other. You know what I am talking about, don't you? You know what it is that I have only dared to hint at, until now. If you don't, then look away, damn you! Look away and protect your sanity whilst you still can! Or read on, read my ghastly revelation, for I must write, I must tell someone what I saw today.
The squatting man in the supermarket wore a belt that was too big to hold up his trousers. He had the worst builder's bum I've ever seen. His buttocks were unnaturally pale and shiny, and entirely hairless, except for the absurdly wide gap between them, full of a bramble tangle of thick, dark, wiry hair.
I mean, you don't expect to see that in Sainsbury's. It's not Walmart.
There was such a unusual distance between his buttocks. I couldn't fathom it. When my wife sits on the carpet, leaning over whatever tedious work stuff it is she does, I sometimes see a mere inch-long faint line of the top of her bumcrack exposed, and I like to put my fingertip in it. It is something she finds disagreeable, but tolerates as one errant thread in the rich tapestry of our relationship. With this guy I could have dropped a golf ball down his crack. I didn't! I didn't have one on me.
I caught up with my wife and 'it' was all we talked about on the way round the aisles. Not in a giggling, puerile way, but in low tones of whispered horror. And as I looked at my wife...let me first tell you about my adoration of my wife. She is such a beauty. Like Cleopatra or one of those fellows. I have taken five thousand photos of her, with her facing me in much less than half of them. In that supermarket I realized that, for the first time in eighteen years, I no longer wanted to see her fat bottom, which had previously been a constant source of such happiness and excitement for me. I tried to visualize it, this perennial source of husbandly satisfaction, but all I could see was the squatting man's uncanny valley. I'd had what alcoholics call a moment of clarity, or a realisation like that which made Archimedes shout "Eureka!" in his bath. I didn't shout anything, though. I don't like to make a scene.
I've had girlfriends before, and they have all had bottoms, which I have viewed with unchanging delight, and seen as part of the whole sexual melange of a person. But I never before today grasped the now unavoidable truth, that bottoms are dark and foul and I'd even go so far as to admit that that's where people poo from, even the women.
I can't go back to being slavishly devoted to my wife's bottom, or anyone's. I am forever cursed. Tainted. Yes, tainted is the exact word. This man has touched my mind with his taint.
I don't know how long he had squatted there before we arrived, or how many lives he has changed. Maybe there will be a drop in the birthrate.
I guess I will have a lot more time on my dry hands now that I am not thinking about my wife's bottom so much. So that's good. Maybe I could do something more worthwhile? I did think I might become a writer. Sadly, I have found that when I write things most people hate what I have written. Really, really hate it, and hate me too, and want to tell me that, bitterly. But the odd person enjoys it.
Yes, they would have to be a very odd person.
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2023.04.01 15:20 AutoModerator [Get] EPC Institute – Matt Bacak – Email Marketing Specialist (incl. Bonus) Download Course on Genkicourses.com
2023.04.01 15:17 YaaliAnnar NoP: Lost and Found (37)
First Previous Memory Transcription Subject: Tresn, arxur farmer
Date [Standardized Human Reckoning]: 2136–09-28
The day I learned about humans was a calm one. The sun had slid close to the horizon and with a basket of herbs and spices, I made my way back to the farmhouse where Taksak and I lived. When I arrived my mentor was waiting for me to prepare our dinner. He asked me for three portions instead of the usual two with the third one being unseasoned.
As I was going about my business, I heard a sound that caught my attention. It was the telltale noise of an airship landing in front of Taksak's farm. I hurried to the farmhouse's kitchen window to see what was going on and the reason for the third portion became clear. I saw a betterment officer stepping out of her vehicle. Her visit was out of schedule, so that means she is bringing some intel. Taksak seemed unfazed by her arrival but I was pretty sure that he was also in the dark with me.
My heart was pounding with anticipation as I returned to prepare the three portions of meals for the day. Our ancestors, blessed they are, had always emphasized the importance of plants in our lives. Some plants had medicinal properties that could cure sickness, while others could be used as seasonings to enhance the taste of our food. They taught us that there was more to food than just meat and that the plant world held great value as well.
My mind was filled with me thinking about what sort of news she was bringing today.
I finished preparing the meals and arranged the dishes on a tray. I took a deep breath to steady my nerves before making my way to the dinner table where the officer had been sitting with her brother. I placed the first dish in front of my mentor first, the second dish graced the betterment officer, and last, I placed mine before I sat.
Taksak and I used a small dagger as befitting of the civilized way of our ancestors, while his sister grabbed the pieces of raw meat with her claw. We ate in silence, each of us lost in our thoughts as we savored them. The Betterment Officer, who had been quiet for most of the meal, eyed the sauce we had been dipping our meat in. Curiosity getting the better of her, she ended up trying it as well, and her face lit up with pleasure as she put the meat into her maw. As she finished her meal, she dipped her piece of meat in every bite, I suppose she approved of it.
After we finished our meal, the woman fished into her satchel and took out a data chip.
"You didn't get this from me," she explained, her voice barely above a whisper. "If you get caught with this, I will deny any involvement."
I tried not to think about what would happen if we were caught with them. Death would be the best-case scenario.
Without another word, the taciturn arxur gathered her things and left us alone in our living room.
"Tresn, bring me the reader," Taksak instructed me, his voice low and urgent.
I didn't hesitate for a moment. I ran into our bedroom and retrieved the reader that Taksak had asked for. The old device was a modified pad with its connectivity disabled. Taksak had the physical module removed, ensuring that whatever we open in that device, stays in our farmhouse. After I handed it to him, Taksak inserted the data chip into the reader and we were presented with a document on the screen.
The front page was printed in large letters saying that this document is classified. The preface of the document described that the original copy was written in ventongue, which was then translated into our speech. I recalled that when Taksak's sister last came here, she brought news about uncontacted species. Everything about the new species made more sense then. They had just attacked Gojid's core world, weakening the prey. With their Cradle left defenseless, our people swooped down.
Taksak and I huddled over the secret documents, poring over the details of the new species and their way of life. According to the text, the Federation had not tainted them with the prey's way of life, allowing them to evolve in their way. They had been able to maintain their carnivorous diet and maintain a society that was not based on violence and cruelty. Taksak seemed lost in thought. His eyes scanned the text as he absorbed the information. I could feel the wheels turning in his mind as he considered the implications of what we were reading.
The document ended with a section filled with pictures revealing these elusive creatures. Their soft features and their lack of natural weapons made them appear almost prey-like. It was as if a mad biologist had modified a prey species to have binocular vision. As we swiped through the pictures, we saw glimpses of their society and their way of life.
Seeing these species, My feelings of jealousy and longing intensified. These creatures lived in dense, vibrant settlements full of life and energy. I could almost feel the excitement of their festivals and rites, imagining myself lost in the sea of people. Despite their dense settlement, they had managed to preserve vast tracts of wilderness, filled with four-legged predators that roamed free in their natural habitats.
One obscene image, in particular, caught our attention. It showed a human feeding a predator with striped fur markings. These creatures had so much meat that they could afford to feed it to their animals. Not only that, but this new species also brought some of the predators into their civilized places, treating them almost like members of their own families. One image showed a small orange predator with pointy ears being held by a human, as though it was their child.
And then, we saw it. A photo of four-legged animals with side-facing eyes grazing on a lush green field. Cattle, I realized with a jolt. Non-sapient cattle, to be precise.
"Sir...look!" I exclaimed, nudging my mentor. "They have non-sapient cattle!"
But when I turned to face him, my excitement turned into concern. A pang of deep sadness etched his face and tears were streaming down his cheeks. For a moment, I didn't know what to do or say. I had never seen my mentor like this before.
"This...might be what we could have been," he said at last, his voice trembling with emotion. "If we had not been contacted from the sky… If we had been left to develop our way of life, perhaps we could have been like this."
The older arxur placed the reader away on the side table. He sobbed, as though a lifetime of sorrow had come crashing down upon him, and he could no longer keep his emotions in check. I could feel my own emotions flaring up in response to his grief. I reached out to offer some form of comfort. But before I could say anything, Taksak pulled me into a tight embrace and we wept, feeling the pain that we shared, a pain that was rooted in all that we had lost as a people.
Outside, our cattle slept in peace under the shade of their pen without a care in the world.
Memory Transcription Subject: Johan, human exchange program participant
Date [Standardized Human Reckoning]: 2136–10-02
We spent a few days exploring the island of Bali, and the news of the Gojids' threat faded into the background of our minds. However, our peaceful respite was short-lived because the arxurs swooped in after the Gojids' defenses were destroyed by the humans. In terror, we felt like we were leading lambs to the slaughter.
Damn if we do and damn if we don't.
The bad news didn't stop there. We also received an update from the Federation's Special Session on humans. It was revealed that almost forty species said outright that they wanted to exterminate humans.
We received letters from both UNOFA and the Office of The President of Nusantara ordering us to stay in Bali until further notice. We were trapped on the island, and the beauty of the island didn't feel enjoyable anymore. A couple of days later, the UNSC Space Force began bringing back thousands of Gojids that they had managed to save from the opportunistic invasion. Some of the rescued Gojids were still in various space stations, waiting for resettlement.
President Fatimah Lim offered Nusantara as a sanctuary for the gojid refugee. Her offer was met with mixed reactions from the public. Some applauded her compassion and generosity, while others criticized her for using the refugees as a political tool to win votes in the upcoming election.
Regardless of the motive behind the offer, the logistics of providing adequate shelter, food, and medical care for the refugees were not that challenging. Kalimantan has some open areas where the damage from the palm plantation was in the process of being rolled back and we were in process of making a new farming village near the capital. The place has a lot of greenery but not outright jungles like the rest of the Island.
Which is why we were being shipped to Kalimantan. Despite the venlil's protest, they believed that Vani could act as the healthcare provider for the refugee and provide some "familiar face" for the poor gojids.
My van has taken me to many different places over the years. I had driven it as far as Kuala Lumpur thanks to the bridges. However, our destination this time was a bit different. We were headed to an island to the north of Java where bridges don't make sense. For the first time in my life, I had to ride a ferry. I was dreading of leaving my van, but then I learned that the ship was big enough to accommodate my mobile house.
When we came near the port of Buleleng, my van informed me that the area was commandeered by the armed forces, and I sighed as my steering wheel folded out while the system asked me to drive. With my manual guidance, we arrived at the port where several armed force members already stood waiting. They noticed my van's license plate and my vehicle told me that its driving sub-system had been subsumed by the armed forces. I let them lead my vehicle to a garage on the ferry. The giant vehicle itself looked more like an aircraft with clipped wings than a boat.
To my surprise, I met the familiar faces of Lieutenant Ayu again when I got off my Van into the passenger deck. From the lavish deck, all we could look at was the monotonous water passing us at high speed. Seated on one of the comfortable couches, Vani asked why the vessel only flew a few meters above the water's surface. I admit I wasn't sure of the answer, so we did some research together. We discovered that the ferry utilized a phenomenon known as Ground Effect.
The Capital was situated beside a large river, making it easy for us to reach it by ferry. However, the journey to Kalimantan was a long one, and the ride would take overnight. The government had made arrangements for us to retire to a cabin while we rode the ship to its destination. I was surprised to find that it looked nothing like a ship cabin and more like a luxurious hotel suit. The spacious room was furnished with a comfortable bed, a cozy seating area, and a large window looking out onto the sea. I was about to remove my shirt and get ready for my venlil when the cabin's door chimed. Opening my door, a private stood in the corridor, bringing a batik suit for me to wear for the meeting with the president. The government also tailored Vani with a bespoke batik apron.
I realized that there will be a lot of photo ops, and being a politician, the president wanted everyone to look uniformed and at their best.
In the morning, we found ourselves back in my van on the shore of Balikpapan with a couple of the government's armored vehicles before and after us. They had yet to relinquish their control over my vehicle so we had no choice but to wait and follow their lead. I had been briefed earlier that we were going to meet the president at the Capital spaceport, but I still didn't know the specifics of what the meeting would entail. The drive to the spaceport was a short one and we arrived in less than an hour.
I was deposited in the middle of the spaceport. Launchpads were arrayed in grid position, with ample distance between them. Not far from us, three mobile platforms had also been parked, I presume to transport the refugees.
The president and her retinue were already there to greet us. Her attire was simple yet somehow exuded an air of extravagance. Her entire attire from the head wrap to her pants was colored deep red. A batik stole hung around her kebaya and a large eight-spoked sun pendant hung from her neck, glittering in the bright sunlight. Here we also saw other familiar faces standing beside the president such as Zara Karun, the UN Representative for Nusantara. The other people in the group were members of the president's cabinet relevant to the event, all dressed in matching batik suits similar to mine.
"Greetings Johan and Vani." she greeted us in Bahasa.
"I hope the ride here was sufficient?" President Fatimah sounded like a canteen auntie back in school that would give a bit more portion to the student. This contrasted with her business-like tone whenever she appeared in the media, and I couldn't tell which one is her actual demeanor.
"It was more than sufficient, madam president. Thank you for entrusting us here." Vani answered. "I have to warn you that I know about gojid anatomy as much as your doctors do."
"It's alright Vani. You're here to give them a familiar face."
The shuttle that carried the refugees had just landed. The door opened and a bunch of giant hedgehogs tumbled down onto the launch platform. These poor people look confused and shaken. One alien in particular, however, climbed down the platform stairs ahead of their people and ran toward us, one human armed force member hurried to shadow him. The Gojid stopped at a speaking distance and they looked at us in a very human way. They even stared at Vani for what felt a bit too long before the venlil replied with a nod.
"Greetings Humans. My name is Bolad. Thank you for hosting us here." subtitles appeared when they spoke with their tongue. Their pitch there was similar to Vani but I can't tell if that was feminine or masculine for a Gojid.
"Are they a man or woman?" I whispered to Vani.
I was hoping that the venlil could tell me, but then he just asked for everyone to hear. "Are you a man or a woman?"
I guess I assumed too much of him. If Vani has difficulty distinguishing human gender, of course, there's no reason to think that he can tell other species apart.
"I am a man. Also, as you can tell already, I am like you." He put his paw on Vani's shoulder.
"You're gay?" I blabbered without even thinking properly.
The Gojid looked at me, his face twitching before he started speaking.
"Human, I know your people are not cruel. So I will assume that there is something lost in translation here and you did not mean to ask if I am happy. My homeworld is being desecrated by ferocious predators and my family is probably dead. Happiness is a distant concept at this moment."
"He was asking if you are attracted to people of the same gender." Vani stepped in to clarify.
"That is an odd euphemism. Do you call those who are attracted to different genders 'sad'?"
The president coughed. "In any case, we are honored to host you in our land for as long as you need." She looked toward the shuttle, where the gojids are huddling around in the launchpad.
"Perhaps," the president continued "We should visit your people."
Bolad led us toward the rest of the refugees, some of which had climbed down the launchpad toward the tarmac. When we got close enough to converse with them, one of them spoke.
"What have you negotiated with them?" The gojid held a small child with them. "How much of us did you promise to them in return for our safety?"
Bolad replied with an even tone. "I have not negotiated anything with the humans," he said in a firm tone "They have agreed to protect us."
The Gojid turned their head from side to side, a gesture I never saw Vani ever do before. "And you believe them?"
"It is getting tiring to keep reminding you that humans do not eat people. Look at this venlil. He is still intact after weeks of being here."
"Yeah, but he's diseased like you." the other gojid replied, and even with only subtitles translating their speech, I can hear the venom in their intonation. "I bet they think you're honorary predators."
It dawned on me that on our first encounter, Bolad meant that both he and Vani were diagnosed with the P-word Disease. I wondered if verbal abuse like this was what he had to deal with back in his homeworld.
"I'm as much a predator as you. The amount of murder I had made is zero." I said, trying to temper my voice as I held my anger. "If we want to eat you, why do we even bother bringing you down here?" My voice got a bit shakier, but before I said something that could jeopardize the president's political career, she patted my shoulder.
I looked back and the president shook her head slightly. "Let me speak to them."
"If you want, we can arrange for you to be transferred to Venlil Prime." She added. "However, that will take time and for the time being, why don't we visit the camp we have made for you? You must be tired and hungry. Hopefully, a rest can calm you down."
The Gojids murmured amongst themselves as we guided them toward their transportation. Their voices were low and tense and despite the language barrier, I could feel their fear and suspicion.
As I suspected, the mobile platform was meant to transfer them. We didn't have the measurement of a Gojid, so instead of using buses, several moving platforms had been provided to transport the spiky aliens. It was the same platform we use to transport cargo, but now, instead of having a big metal box on top of it, the platform has a clear wall installed around it and plush carpet on the floor. One by one the gojid climbed on the platform, including Bolad and Vani. Zara Karun advised that the humans shouldn't come with the refugees.
Alone in my van, I question whether we would need to transfer the refugees to Venlil. Although it made sense to send them away due to the looming invasion threat, I have a feeling that it might put the venlils in danger, especially if the Federation member responsible for the attack found them guilty by association.
I hope Vani's homeworld was not also under a similar threat.
Afterwords: If the gojid refugee is non-canonical, so be it. I want to write about the hedgehogs.
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2023.04.01 15:17 deathpulse_bot Deathversary: Marvin Gaye
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Died on April 1st, 1984 at 44 years old, of ballistic trauma.ref
Marvin Gaye, renowned singer, songwriter, and producer, passed away on April 1, 1984, at the age of 44.
Born on April 2, 1939, in Washington, D.C., Gaye found success in the music industry early on, launching his career with Motown Records in 1961 and signing a contract in 1962. With timeless hits such as "I Heard It Through the Grapevine," "What's Going On," "Mercy Mercy Me," and many more, Gaye reached superstar status and went on to become one of the most influential artists of all time.
Gaye was the recipient of numerous awards, including twelve Grammy Award nominations and two wins, four American Music Awards, and a Lifetime Achievement Award. His music was also awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Bill Clinton in 1996.
The other major contribution of Marvin Gaye was his activism. He was always an advocate of social justice and spoke to racial injustices through his lyrics. He was a leader in the civil rights movement, and his advocacy was instrumental in creating broader dialogues about social justice.
In addition to music and activism, Gaye was an experienced boxer and a professional basketball player.
Marvin Gaye left behind a legacy of classic songs, a steadfast commitment to social justice, and a devoted fan base. He will be remembered for years to come.
for more details, and to see who else has died on 04/01
2023.04.01 15:15 AutoModerator [Get] Marisa Murgatroyd – The Experience Product Masterclass 2023
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Download course here: https://www.genkicourses.com/product/marisa-murgatroyd-the-experience-product-masterclass-2023/ [Get] Marisa Murgatroyd – The Experience Product Masterclass 2023 https://preview.redd.it/yz3etu5sf6ra1.jpg?width=768&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=8b415b81f690e2b83b9d42699bc5986f4cd9d183
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In this Module you’ll:
- “Experiencify” your program with the 10 Core Experiences of The Experience Formula™ to create an engaging experience that works with (rather than against) the brain to get your customers “hooked” on taking action and getting results
- Watch as your students spontaneously put down distractions and excuses and become “achievement machines”, focused on taking action, getting results and bringing more customers your way
- Embed a powerful process for gathering success stories right into your course, so you can quickly have dozens if not hundreds of glowing testimonials (this is how I ended up with 1480 testimonials and counting for EPM!)
2023.04.01 15:12 sadpony96 Accessing patient records after Dr retired??
Basically I was a patient of a Psychiatrist (Psychiatrist A) for several years, with regularity and then on/off depending on my needs and finances. I have been going through it lately and when I looked him up to make an appointment after a year or so gap his website said he has retired. I made an appointment with a different Psychiatrist (B) and it was an absolute disaster so I won’t be continuing, he was just really arrogant and didn’t listen to me at all.
Here’s where I’m concerned - I went to Psych B to discuss ADHD symptoms I’ve been struggling lately. Psychiatrist A had diagnosed me with this but as at the time I wasn’t experiencing many symptoms of it and had other needs we didn’t treat it or focus on it in my therapy sessions. Psych B said I would need to pay for an ADHD assessment but as I mentioned I have already been assessed by Psych A, Psych B he didn’t listen to me at all. As Psych A has retired I don’t have any of my patient records from him and don’t know how/if it’s possible to obtain them. My GP doesn’t seem to have them either.
It’s a really disgusting thing with mental health provision that the most vulnerable people have to pay hundreds and thousands for crucial support if they can’t wait 1/2 years or are ignored by the NHS. I am far from wealthy, in fact I’m unemployed due to poor mental health and so I obviously don’t want to pay another half grand just to ‘get proof’ of something I already know I have. What can I do? Thank you so much for any advice x
submitted by sadpony96
to MentalHealthUK [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 15:10 throwawayy4509867 [TOMT][Music Video][2010s] A little girl is bored and plays with an imaginary friend who is wearing a bunny mask in an EDM music video.
EDM song only lyric I half remember is something like "hey is that painting staring at me". I'm pretty sure the little girl (8-11 years old) is drinking a carton of apple juice at the start. The imaginary friend is a young woman wearing mostly (all?) black with a bunny (possibly different animal?) mask. They're in a big house with a pool. Thank you in advance!
submitted by throwawayy4509867
to tipofmytongue [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 15:06 sadnesslaughs To finally solve all problems caused by humans, God made six new earths, to separate everyone depending on their sins. Earth 1 being for the best people and Earth 7 being for the worst sinners. Every 50 years, angels arrive and re-judge people to decide if they should stay, go up or down.
“It’s been fifty years already? Time flies on Earth 7. I remember how dull the years felt all that time ago. How bored I was with my immortality, sitting around with the other self-righteous on Earth 1. Or shall I just call it Earth? What do the angels refer to it as?” Alex asked, paying little attention to the angel. He had been struggling to open his can of soup for the last ten minutes, banging it against the side of his worn-out kitchen table. The pointed edges of the table piercing the top but not quite busting it open, spilling droplets of red tomato soup all over the table.
“We call it heaven. You were a holy man back then; a crowning achievement of what faith could do for a person. We still believe you are that holy person, which is why we are begging you to reconsider this crusade you’re performing. These people will repent on their own. They don’t need you to torment them into submission.” The angel pleaded; body hidden by a ray of golden light. On Earth 1, the angels were visible, a figure that those holy humans could comprehend, but as one moved lower down the Earth’s, the angels became more obscured, their features not visible behind the protective holy lights.
“Really? You think this is reforming anyone? Have you even looked at the world outside? Feel free to glance out of the cracks in my walls. It’s hell on this Earth. You put the worst of the worst together and expected them to play nice?”
“We believed that it would be in their best interest to be separated. It would offer them a chance to self-reflect without harming anyone else.”
“Without harming anyone else? So, it’s fine if they kill each other?”
“I didn’t say that.”
“It’s implied. I agree with you, I would rather they kill each other. Unfortunately, that doesn’t give them a chance to reflect on their mistakes. All you’ve done is given them access to a playground of sin, one where they have even fewer consequences.” Alex banged the can against the edge, the top spilling open, spilling a wave of red liquid over the table. “Want some soup?”
“I’ll pass. Don’t you think this is better? We created a heaven and hell using your Earth, a way to organize people into categories. No one dies anymore. They simply live and reflect on their lives until they earn their way to Earth 1.”
“How many people here do you believe will earn their way back?”
“I believe every sinner has a chance to-“
“Honestly. Without the shit, how many do you think will earn their way back without me?”
“Five, maybe ten.” The angel sighed.
“Five or ten every fifty years. This place is going to get overpopulated at this rate. That’s not even counting the new arrives. Sure, Earth 7 is a hard place to get into, but it’s an even harder place to leave. Imagine living around murderers and sinners and trying to avoid killing someone. Even if you kill to protect yourself, you’re still technically a committing a sin.”
“God says one must forgive his enemies. As an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.”
“Fifty years of turning the other cheek is hard. Which is why I’m helping. These people need someone to fear. A threat that makes them uneasy about sinning.”
“Alex, this isn’t the way to do things. You need to trust god’s plan.”
“What plan? We hear nothing from him for thousands of years and then suddenly we all sent to these Earth’s without warning. That was his grand plan? This isn’t what I devoted my life to. God teaches sinners how to grow. He doesn’t throw them into the too hard basket and leave them to kill one another.” Alex sipped his soup, downing the cold liquid and tossing the can onto the floor.
“This is a different way of teaching.” The angel said, picking up the can from the floor, looking for a bin to put it in. When it found none, it simply crushed the can into light. “You still choose to eat, even with immortality?”
“Even if hunger won’t kill me, it still doesn’t feel nice to starve. Plus, one can for me means one less for the others. I plan to weaken them until they are forced to become better people.”
“That isn’t the way. What if you shared the can? Wouldn’t that send a better message?”
“Heh, you angels really don’t have any clue what these people are like. These aren’t people who have just sworn during church or tripped someone over. These are the worst of the worst. People that don’t understand the difference between right and wrong. Suffering is their only way to salvation. They need to experience fear and pain.”
“I don’t think we will see eye to eye on this. I hate to say it, but you won’t be advancing to Earth 6 this time.”
“Mm-hmm. You can just send a letter next time. Don’t bother showing up.” Alex murmured, noticing the hint of a flashlight outside, the light poking through a crack in his wall. The light moving around the back of his house as he crept closer to the wall, peering out of the hole, watching as a small group of looters made their way to his shed.
“Please. I can tell what you’re thinking. Share your supplies with them.”
“You know, maybe you’re right.” Alex said, giving the angel a moment of hope before he reached for a remote underneath the kitchen sink. With the remote in hand, he waited until a looter opened the shed door before setting off the explosives. “Oh, what a shame. Nothing left to share.”
The angel grimaced, unable to look at the destruction. Smoke pouring from where the shed once was. The looters didn’t die, but it would take some time for their bodies to fully heal. Alex opened the backdoor, staring down the group.
“Welcome to hell, newbies. I’m going to torment you until you repent for your sins. If you’re smart, you will take this warning and follow the rules I’ve set. If you don’t, I’ll make sure you never get a moment of rest; you will always be looking over your shoulder for me.”
Alex watched as the group slowly healed, staring at the man in horror before scurrying into the darkness of the night. Alex was certain some of them would be back. Most people that ended up in hell weren’t the type to conform to rules, at least not at first. They would make a few attempts on his life and may even succeed, but without being able to kill him, they could only halt him for so long. Even trapping Alex wouldn’t last forever. The most successful trapping attempt lasting five years until the lock on his cage door rusted, and he broke free.
“You have set up rules?” The angel questioned.
“I have a few posters outside. A few guidelines on how to avoid contact with me. If they behave themselves, they won’t get much trouble from me. It’s the ones that continue their old habits that need to fear me.”
“I see. When you were a religious man, did you believe in the devil?”
“I did. It makes sense that if there is a god, there would be a devil.”
“The devil was never real. At least not until you arrived here. Your tale shares some similarities to the devil’s too. You both serve a similar purpose, although while the devil was a prisoner of hell, you appear to be a warden. I believe you have become the devil of Earth 7. I just wonder if you will stay a warden forever or end up a prisoner, too?”
“I’m no devil. I’ll return to Earth 1 when the evil repents. I just don’t plan to leave until I do god’s job for him. Even the wicked deserve to go to Earth 1. Even if they have to be forced to better themselves.”
“Hm. That answers my question. I’ll be taking my leave.”
“Please do. I need to go check my security camera. This place might look like it’s falling apart, but that’s just to trick anyone stupid enough to enter it. I have traps, a bunker and everything I need to make them repent. You’re just putting me in danger by being here.”
“Very well. Farewell.” The angel shone even brighter, causing Alex’s senses to overload, unable to hear anything but white noise as the angel left him with one word. “Prisoner.” Before vanishing.
submitted by sadnesslaughs
to Sadnesslaughs [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 15:02 infadibulum A most very pointless core memory.
I fear that the implications of this story are in truth not pointless, however in the spirit of the sidebar this story had for 5 years been a story that noone would want to hear, but I have wanted to tell.
The story begins in the sleepy old town of Redacted, Australia. I had been working a somewhat unregarded job maintaining smoke alarms for real estates. This detail is important when I explain that in my duties I visited over 400 houses per month. Over 20 a day. Almost always these houses I had never been to before. With that sheer volume of jobs it's easy to imagine that they all would become a blur. Houses often unique, but every job the same. As the years passed thousands of times I would knock a door, spend a few minutes there before leaving.
Tyler Durdens single-serve small talk kind of stuff.
Faces forgotten instantly.
On my last day with the company I had looked into the stats. Nearly 20,000 houses I entered.
Now, years later when i reminisce on that time, I did one job.
One job that I remember.
Not only remember, but picture so vivdly in my mind that I could retrace my very steps; When I left my car, walked through the overgrown courtyard, and made my way up the steps. Knocking on the door. I remember it because it led me to him. Our interaction was short-lived. 5 minutes at most, and though I tell that my memory of it is undamaged, I cannot honestly say I carried out my work, because this time, I was visiting a sage.
After a breif introduction and typical small talk he asked one question of me. The question had no answer, or rather, the answer was irrellevant. It was the question that lingered with me through these years.
I dwelled on this question for the rest of the day, and many days after that. Why did it stir something in me at the time? I thought highly of this many as soon as he asked it, although time did not permit me to stay, though I think I would have liked to. I've had many encounters where I have felt I liked someone shortly after meeting. But this was more, I felt trust almost.
I found my answer about a year ago.
There was no mystical epiphone found in the subtext of a tome. I chanced to happen across a video that discussed this specific phonomenon. I was destined to as well, as it was in research for sales, and building human connection that I found it.
The video has been lost to me now, but the jist of the advise was this: Sortly after meeting someone, make a positive observation about them, and then link it to a absoulely random guess about what that person does.
That question, asked of me by that man all thouse years ago was exactly "You seem to be very philosphical, are you a guitarist?"
Now, it sounds like such a stupid thing to ask. But it's really not. I don't think I need to unpack why a question like this would be so inerasable from someones memory. It's the synergy of some of the most basic principals of human connection, bundled together in a phrase that is just utterly unexpected.
It's amazing how things like this can linger on your mind. So simple it was, but it took me off guard. At the time it made me laugh when he asked. It seemed stupid almost, but inside me something changed. I answered his question and then was on my way.
I hope I meet that man again. I think I'd remember his face. It may have been the get-rich-quick tactic of establishing a bond, but this tactic paid off. I've yet to pay this forward to someone else, the more I've reflected on it the more I feel I need courage to ask it. Maybe you, reader will be brave enough to give it a go. Who knows, maybe the person who you ask it to will never forget you, because maybe they won't be a guitarist either...
submitted by infadibulum
to PointlessStories [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 15:02 hotpotato138 Story of my past dating experiences.
I dated a woman in 2015. We used to be in nursing school together. I asked her out on Facebook and she agreed to meet me. We exchanged numbers and talked on the phone for awhile. Then we set up a date. We went to dinner at a small restaurant. She offered to pay, but I told her she can pay next time. After dinner we went to a park and walked around for awhile. We held hands. I told her my dick was getting hard by holding her hand. The first date went well.
For the second date, I invited her to my apartment. I made her lunch. Then we watched a movie. She was a black American, Christian woman. She had a daughter from a previous boyfriend. She was fairly hot and couple years younger than me. She believed in waiting till marriage for sex after having premarital sex.
For the third date, she invited me to her place. We watched a movie there. Then she cuddled with me. My hand was on her boob. I didn't have any place to put it because the couch was small. She didn't care. The next day we ate lunch. She ordered pizza for me.
We decided to be friends because we didn't feel compatible enough for dating. Then we stopped being friends because she thought I was "boring." Boring is subjective, so I don't care.
I almost went on a date with another woman, also in 2015. I was in Las Vegas visiting my friend. I asked out a woman who gave me a temporary tattoo. She agreed at first. Her friend came to pick her up when we were walking towards a restaurant. She must have called her before our "date." It would've been better if she rejected me instead of wasting my time. I don't get angry for getting rejected.
I am an Indian American guy. I posted a picture of myself on Hot or Not when I was 19. My average rating was a 8.6/10 from thousands of girls. I don't know if that website is real or not. I still look the same at 32.
I don't think I am a virgin because of being unattractive or fear of rejection. I have been rejected before and it hasn't hurt me too much. I felt disappointed for awhile.
I think I'm a virgin because I don't try to date much. I don't think lack of trying makes me an involuntary celibate. Plus the number of women I asked wasn't a large enough sample. If a person asks hundreds or thousands of women or men, and gets rejected by all, they might be an involuntary celibate.
When I dated those women, I believed premarital sex was okay. Now, I think it's wrong for me. I prefer to wait till marriage now. My dating preferences also changed now.
submitted by hotpotato138
to virgin [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 15:01 PIeasantPain Can a company steal from my account, and refuse to repay?
Management stole thousands from impound account. Pocketing refunded property taxes, diverted insurance premium payments, all over the course of several years.
I have clear evidence of this, including financial losses and physical property damage. The company will not repay any losses or damages, although they have admitted fault. Several of the documents received explicitly state a course of action that even the statement constitutes criminal conduct.
I can't get legal counsel to take the case, and after submitting documentation... I get completely ghosted. No response to inquiry of any kind.
Can companies just completely ignore contractual obligations and do whatever they want without facing any penalties these days?
submitted by PIeasantPain
to legaladvice [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 14:41 kasprile Incomplete order remedies
I own a small tree farm and nursery. Each year I drive from northern Wisconsin down to central tenessee to purchase a large trailer load of bare root trees. I have bought from this person for two years now, a different person the first year was much better, a fellow farmer pushed me onto this guy…
Each year after driving 800 miles each way, taking off of work, having customers orders lined up and everything he does not have all of my order as ordered and sends me back short trees or not even having some kinds. Like apples last year or maples this year, after explicitly telling me he had then in stock at the time of orderingZ last year he admitted to selling them out under me before I got there cause someone offered to pay extra fee to them…
This year with him not having the maples l have angry customers and out thousands of dollars in sales and getting bad reviews for not fulfilling orders
What are my remedies? Can I demand he deliver my trees to me since I did my part and it is his fault I do not have them? Sue for lost sales?
Could I cancel the check please f he refuses to fix the situation since the oral contract was to get all of those trees at once and actually would have bought elsewhere had I known?
submitted by kasprile
to legaladvice [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 14:35 Shrimperor DLC Wave 5 announcement: Sommie Mirage Sessions #XBC
The last DLC brings the series' celebration to an epic conclusion.
Kyoto, April 1st 2023
Nintendo, Intelligent Systems, Monolith Soft and Atlus announced a new a DLC wave for the latest Fire Emblem game, Fire Emblem Engage, aiming to not only conclude the celebratory 17th title of the series, but also bring beloved series together.
Here's the synopsis from the game's home page:
After saving Elyos and the mirror world, Alear and the gang find themselves summoned in For called "Shibuya", a highly advanced society with no magic or dragons in sight...Atleast on the surface. Features
Journey with Alear through this mysterious place as they meet Idols that can summon Emblems, find the connection between the worlds of the Emblem and learn the origins of Sommie.
A new lyrical collection
- Return of paired Endings: The dlc will bring back the much beloved paired endings, including the ability to pair up the Emblems, heroes of the past, with other characters. This feature isn't available in the localized version.
- Engage ver.2: When Engaging Characters now take on more powerful & sytlish forms! Dragon characters will have futuristical mechanical dragon wings and flying characters will ride air planes, as an example. These forms are known as Carnage Forms.
- RPG gameplay: Between the challenging and strategic battles of Fire Emblem enjoy dungeon and filed exploration and challenging small party RPG gameplay!
- Chain attack music: Whenever more than 3 characters take part in a chain or session attack, the music changes during the duration of the attack!
The DLC will feature various beloved Fire Emblem tracks remixed and sung by Fortuna entertainment Idols.
- Doors of Fate, by Mamori Minamoto
- Together we ride, by Toma Akagi and Eleonora Yumizuru
- Dark Fall, by Yoshiro Tsurugi
- End of All, by Kiria Kurono and Tsubasa Oribe
- Opera of Light ver.2, by Itsuki Aoi feat. Alear & Veyle
In addition to that, songs from other games will get a remix as well. "Weight of Life" by Vocaloid Adult Tiki and more. Please look forward to it. The Scientist Xenologue
Focusing on the origins of Sommie, this story revolves around a child destined to change the world, his strangely familiar red and blue doll and the mysterious picture. Discover the truth of the worlds with 12 highly strategic Fire Emblem maps and fun and challenging RPG gameplay between them! New Emblems, Units and Classes
Upon clearing the Xenologue, the following Emblems will be available for the main game
- Emblem of Wings, Tsubasa & Caeda.
Focusing on Spd and Magic, this emblem is able to attack and support with Magic and lances.
Sync skill: Session attacks. If an ally in movement range breaks an enemy, this unit performs a chain attack. If Tsubasa targets an enemy weakness (including during chain attacks), all allies in range will join in on the chain attack!
Engage Skill: Soaring girl. Avo+50 against attacks effective on the engaged unit.
Engage Weapon: Zandyne. Powerful Wind attack that breaks sword units. Effective vs. Fliers.
Engage Attack: Grand Finale. Powerful Area wind magic that also heals allies. Power increases with nearby number of allies.
In addition to that, more Emblems whose identities & abilities will be revealed later will also join you!
- Emblem of the Forseer.
- Emblem of the Chad.
- Emblem of the Eternal Now.
- Emblem of the Joker.
Clearing the Xenologue will also provide you with a new unit
A dragon who once helped Fortuna entertainment slay the shadow dragon, she returned performa to her world with her many songs and actions. More than 2000 years have passed in her world since she helped slay the shadow dragon.
A Manakete capable of using powerful dragon stones and the full power of Emblem attacks.
- 100% Clear Bonus: Sommie Rider.
A powerful class that only Dragon units can reclass into. This class provides access to every weapon and high stat caps and growths across the board. Due to power, only one unit can have access to it per run. Super Smash Bros. mode
A new mode available once you 100% the game. You can play all of it in the style of the much beloved party game, Smash bros. 80+ Fire Emblem characters are ready to duke it out in the land of Tellius!
The DLC will launch on April 20th for 69$
submitted by Shrimperor
to fireemblem [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 14:35 AutoModerator [Get] EPC Institute – Matt Bacak – Email Marketing Specialist (incl. Bonus)
2023.04.01 14:34 autotldr Israeli police kill Palestinian man near Al-Aqsa in Jerusalem
This is the best tl;dr I could make, original
reduced by 63%. (I'm a bot)
Israeli police have shot and killed a Palestinian man at an entrance to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, raising fears of further violence. Summary Source FAQ Feedback Top keywords: Palestinian#1 police#2 Israeli#3 compound#4 Mosque#5
Palestinian worshippers at the entrance to the site on Saturday said police shot the man at least 10 times, after he tried to prevent them from harassing a woman who was on her way to the holy compound.
Israeli police have boosted their forces in the area as tens of thousands of Muslim worshippers from Jerusalem and the Israeli-occupied West Bank gather for Ramadan prayers at Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Noureddine said police tried to force Palestinian vendors and worshippers out of the area after the incident, beating him and others with batons.
In previous years, Ramadan has seen Israeli police attack Palestinians gathered around Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, Islam's third-holiest site.
In 2021, the expulsion of Palestinian families from their homes in Jerusalem served as a catalyst for widespread Palestinian protests across Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory.
Post found in /worldnews, /AutoNewspaper, /ALJAZEERAauto and /AlJazeera.
NOTICE: This thread is for discussing the submission topic. Please do not discuss the concept of the autotldr bot here.
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2023.04.01 14:32 odonovj Blackview 8800pro is HORRIBLE
I've had it for less than a year and for the past 7 months the screen was flickering and then down the right half side of the screen is burnt, I think that's the term. there's no way to return it, there's no one to return it to. Alibaba doesn't back it except for maybe 30 days or something pathetic like that. So why did this happen, I couldn't tell you. maybe it dropped once, I can't remember but they claim that it's so rugged blah blah and another blah. Why do screens burn? and why within a few months? Anyhow on the page, the phone or device sounds fantastic, that's why I was a sucker and bought it for something like $400 But reality shows that it's a big lie. it's most likely not shockproof, and it's definitely not waterproof, especially around the microphone but that should be no surprise if you think about it. There is no support, ya I'm sure you can find what they refer to as support but I'll give you a thousand dollars if you can prove to me a real problem that you were able to get resolved. So don't blame anyone but yourself when this device fails you and you get stuck with a heavy useless brick. Back to my google pixel 4, I go!
submitted by odonovj
to blackview [link] [comments]
2023.04.01 14:30 Tharkun140 Jade Empire has some of the best and some of the worst writing in video game history
Jade Empire is... weird. It's like Bioware's odd middle child, squashed between more popular franchises and placed in a setting very different from the company's other games. I'm still not sure if I like the gameplay, but I have strong, clear and very mixed opinions about the story. It somehow manages to combine writing so good I want to gush about it, and so garbage I want to rant about it angrily. And so I will do both, in exactly that order.
Extreme spoilers from this point on. Like, story-runing ones.
The Best (main villain)
Sun Li is the best twist villain I've ever seen and there is barely any competition.
Now, when I say "twist villain" I don't mean just any villain who has a twist associated with them, but rather a character who gets introduced as non-evil or insignificant, but ends up being a villain in a twist of some sort. This is quite common and quite easy to mess up, with Disney animations like Big Hero 6
being most famous examples of how this trope works and how it often doesn't work. All too often the twist villain is just two different characters, good one and evil one, with the latter replacing the former midway through the story. A decent story will have some clues or foreshadowing that makes the twist itself
agreeable, but the villain usually doesn't have any... continuity to them. It's just "I was actually a completely different person all along" which tends to be rather unsatisfying more often than not.
Wll Sun Li isn't like that.
The twist itself is excellent. It is foreshadowed at many different points all throughout the story. It doesn't come out completely out of nowhere, but the sheer suddenness and audacity with which your teacher betrays you, not to mention your character freaking dying
hits like a truck. And if you replay the game knowing the twist, everything makes just as much sense, or more sense, or a completely different kind of sense with lines like
That is the armor of a man who knows no remorse, no pity.
being just gold. But I'm more impressed by the how Sun Li changes when his villainy is revealed, or by how little actually changes about him. His calm, polite mannerisms don't go away. He does get angry once or twice during the final battle, but the game showed him being capable of this exact kind of anger at points where (though you couldn't tell at the time) he loses control of the situation. It even seems like he still cares about the MC after his betrayal, and though it turns out he didn't care for his other students very much, that concern was an entirely informed attribute that was actually contradicted by some things we've seen. It's like with Felix in Red vs Blue
where if you'd paid attention to the way character acts rather than what people are saying about him, you'd have known how much of a POS he was way before the grand reveal.
Of course, Master Li did lie about some things. He did put on a mask, however imperfect that mask was. But that's why everyone keeps referring to him as the "Glorious Strategist" and why the twist feels entirely earned. You knew he was capable of some insane planning and deception, and of very dark deeds at that. He was the one who planned the attack on the Dirge, and admits to it almost at the start of the story. His actions and behavior as a fake good guy are explainable not just by some new information you get after the twist, but by things you knew well in advance. The continuity I was talking about is preserved perfectly
in a way I don't recall seeing anywhere else.
Also you can let him kill you and he builds you a statue in return. Not a bad guy all things considered.
The Worst (other villains)
I think Sun Li manages to be so great mostly by siphoning off good writing from other villains. The various minor antagonists you face throughout the game are mostly forgettable, and the major ones have... major problems with how they're written, at the very least.
First you have the Emperor Sun Hai, the actual main villain for most of the story. He made a ruthless, but necessary choice to attack the Dirge and kidnap the Water Dragon, ending a decade-long drought and likely saving his whole empire. Naturally, he gets presented as a... power hungry asshole with no positive qualities or depth. Not that he is presented as much at all, given how we only get to interact with him once and hardly see him at any other point. And while I know pure evil villains aren't always bad, for such a major antagonist to be this flat and boring... yeah I would have done things differently.
Then there is Death's Hand, who has a cool design and a very nice plot twist associated with him, but there's an issue; The two possible resolutions to his story are presented as the precise opposite
of what they should be. In the penultimate chapter you get a choice to either kill him and release him from his... predicament, or recruit him into your party so that he may atone for the evils he took part in. And the latter option is presented as the evil one.
Not only is this really weird (I know the guy wants to die, but that doesn't mean he deserves it and the heroes kinda need all help they can get at that point) it discourages the player from seeing the "keep Death's Hand alive" route, which is more interesting on every level and gives the character a far more proper ending than "he dies lul" in the epilogue.
And then there is the fucking Water Dragon
. The water goddess designed as the big good of the story, who somehow manages to be the most despicable character by a wide, wide
As mentioned earlier, there used to be a drought which cost Jade Empire hundreds of thousands of innocent lives over the course of a decade. Throughout these ten years
the Water Dragon, who had more than enough power to stop this famine, just watched everyone die of hunger and thirst because of some vague notion of balance that is never actually explained. Even when her own devout followers were dying by hundreds against the Imperial Army, who I remind you was trying to save thousands of innocents from slow death,
the Water Dragon didn't give a single fuck until Sun Hai dragged her from her cushy seat, cut her open and ended the drought. This action results in plenty ghosts being unable to move on to the afterlife due to the Water Dragon being imprisoned, but forcing her to make rain didn't have any downsides itself, so... the only reason the game's conflict is even happening is because she was a nuclear-grade asshole in a way that benefitted nobody, including herself.
And yet when we see her imprisoned before the final battle, we are supposed to feel sorry
for that monstrocity. Freeing her so that she can restore her crappy world order, not having learned anything from this whole mess she made, is a treated as the good choice,
whilst taking the power for yourself is so evil that your companions literally start trying to murder you
the moment you make that choice. Great loyalty guys, that's totally the thanks I deserve for everything I've done for you and the people around us. I'm also glad we are not allowed to even suggest
this dragon twat did anything wrong, or that there may be non-selfish reasons for enslaving her. This final choice is so ethically and logically botched it makes Fallout 3
look like a shining example of video game morality done right.
Granted, one of your companions makes an off-hand remark about how other lands somewhere are experiencing droughts because the Empire is getting rain instead of them but A) How does this person know this and why would I trust them and B) Why would things be set up that way? Even assuming rain never falls on oceans or uninhabited areas in this setting, only falls in growth seasons, water evaporates at maximum speed and there genuinely isn't enough of it for everyone, surely there must be a better way to spread out rainfall than bountiful showers followed by years of drought? And you can't tell me "that's just how things are" or anything like that, the entire plot of the game happens only because this specific element of the setting is explicitely shown to be alterable, and because we have the power over it. But if you try to use that power and help people you are suddenly evil or "Closed Fist" even though it should be the opposite by the game's own damn rules.
For better or worse, the narrative ends up forgetting the whole drought thing by the end. If you choose to free the Water Dragon, Jade Empire keeps prospering without mention of any famines, and it's in no way implied to be a bad thing in any way. I guess it's no longer drought time, and the Water Dragon decided not to take back the water we owed her? Whatever, the writers clearly didn't care so why would I care? This whole aspect of the plot is such a mess I'm actually somewhat glad the game isn't more known, since nobody deserves to make that stupid final choice.
At least the actual
final choice is really good. Letting Sun Li win is really funny, whilst still somehow making more sense than the other two endings. I know what I'm doing if I ever replay that game.
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2023.04.01 14:29 storytimestorytime10 Most affordable scooters worth buying?
Hey everyone! Perhaps I’m beating a dead horse here, but after years and 12,000 miles of riding an electric scooter (yes, the ones that go 20 mph and you stand on them and kick) I’m feeling like I want something a bit quicker that I don’t have to charge every 10 miles.
In the past I rode a Vespa GTS for a few thousand miles and loved it. Also had a buddy 50 and loved that. Also yes, I have my motorcycle endorsement
My question for you today: What are the cheapest scooters in the USA that are worth buying? My main focus is reliability and a top speed of at least 25-30 mph. I’ve been eyeing a Honda Navi (because it’s a cheap Honda) and the Metropolitan because I love the style and storage. Are there any other great reliable scooters out there for ~$2-3000?
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2023.04.01 14:29 GabyAndMichi Queen's evil or scrofula and the politics of sex and power.
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“...Throughout her reign Elizabeth continued a number of rituals of medieval kings that demonstrated the continuing power of the aspect of sacred monarchy. We can see, however, the gendered nature of the way she approached these ceremonies. Throughout her reign Elizabeth used the royal touch to cure people of the disease, scrofula, known as the king's evil. Being able to cure through touch suggests the power Elizabeth had as a religious figure, a sacred monarch, and the value of her self-presentation as Virgin Queen. …Lancastrians claimed that Edward IV could not touch since he was not the rightful king. Wrote Fortescue, he "wrongly claims to enjoy this wonderful privilege. Wrongly ... [since] this unction is powerless because Edward had no right to receive it."
Sir John went on to argue by analogy, and scornfully asked: "Would a woman who received ordination thereby become a priest?
" Clearly not. Continuing this line of argument, Fortescue added that a usurper would not be the only one unable to cure by touch. Many duties likewise are incumbent on the kings of England in virtue of the kingly office, which are inconsistent with a woman's nature, and kings of England are endowed with certain powers by special grace from heaven, wherewith queens in the same country are not endowed. The kings of England by touch of their annointed hands they cleanse and cure those inflected with a certain disease, that is commonly called the King's Evil
, though they be pronounced otherwise incurable. This gift is not bestowed on Queens.
Yet less than a century later, both Mary and Elizabeth were touching for the king's evil, and following other practices including blessing metal for cramp rings (also used for healing)
and conducting other religious services attached to Easter, such as washing the feet of the poor on Maundy Thursday. It is worth considering how practices described as inappropriate and unworkable in one century could be accomplished the next, and the implications for understanding the nature of Elizabeth's role as queen and the function of monarchy and its religious aspects in the sixteenth century
. It is useful to look as well at Mary's reign to see the similarities and differences in religious practices of a queen regnant, one Catholic who marries; the other a Protestant Virgin Queen.
We should not assume that Elizabeth appropriated these functions for purely political reasons as a means of encouraging loyalty, though that was a strong element. Queen Mary I touching for Queen's Evil or Scrofula.
As Max Weber has noted, the use of religious conventions are helpful in establishing the legitimacy of rule**. Further, some sociologists, of the Durkheim school, argue in a positive theory of ritual that "religious beliefs and practices not only create and sustain the fundamental social structure of a society, but maintain the members' sense of reality
."** But religious feelings probably also infused Elizabeth's gestures. Historians have traditionally described Elizabeth as a politique who was very knowledgeable about Christianity but had little religious conviction. But the work of such scholars as William Haugaard and Margaret Aston suggests far otherwise
. Scarisbrick is correct that Elizabeth was no zealot, which was a difficult issue for the Protestant zealots of her time to come to terms. But because Elizabeth did not agree with their version of Christianity does not mean that she was not devout. It was serious enough for Elizabeth to organize worship in her chapel as she wanted it. Writer Max Weber. The little silver cross she had in her private chapel infuriated reformers, but was important enough to her that she refused to remove it.
John Jewel's letters to Peter Martyr are filled with the despair this caused him. Jewel wrote him November 16, 1559, "The doctrine is every where most pure; but as to the ceremonies and maskings, there is a little too much foolery. That little silver cross, of ill-omened origin, still maintains its place in the queen's chapel. Wretched me! This thing will soon be drawn into a precedent. There was at one time some hope of it being removed .... But as far as I can perceive, it is now a hopeless case. Such is the obstinacy of some minds
." Elizabeth had originally wanted the cross and candlesticks set up throughout her kingdom, but had finally agreed with church leaders to ban them, and in the central place of the proscribed crucifixion, the royal arms were displayed, thus conflating even more monarchy and worship.
Elizabeth refused, however, to take the cross and candlesticks out of her own chapel. Iconoclasts were so distressed that in both 1562 and 1567 they made attempts to destroy them. In 1562 an unknown reformer managed to do so.
Bishop John Parkhurst wrote gleefully to Bullinger (August 20, 1562), "The crucifix and candlesticks in the queen's chapel are broken into pieces, and, as some has brought word, reduced to ashes. A good riddance of such a cross as that!
" Elizabeth, however, replaced them and they were a target again five years later, as de Silva explained in a letter to Philip II (1 November, 1567). "On the 25th whilst they were performing what they call the service in the Queen's chapel an Englishman went up to the altar and cast down the cross and candlesticks upon which he stamped, and at the same time shouted heretical and shameful words
Elizabeth was inclined at first to treat this leniently. She told de Silva "that the man was mad and did not know what he was doing, recounting to me some of his follies, amongst others that he thought our Lady and St. John, who were on either side of the cross, were Jews who wanted to crucify Christ again
." De Silva was far from convinced, calling the man "an evil-minded rogue
." In December the man tried to destroy the sacred objects in the chapel again, and this time "he was at once arrested and taken to a private prison whence he was transferred to the Tower
." Given the conflicts over Elizabeth's private worship, we might wonder what Elizabeth's true religious feelings were
. De Feria reported to Philip in 1559 that she had told him "she differed very little from us as she believed God was in the sacrament of the Eucharist and only dissented from three or four things in the Mass
She went on to say that "she did not wish to argue about religious matters
," something she tried to avoid whenever she could. Five years later she told de Silva, referring to the beginning of her reign, that "she had had to conceal her real feelings to prevail with her subjects in matter of religion, but that God knew her heart, which was true to His service
." Of course, we do not know how sincere Elizabeth was in her discussions with either of the Spanish ambassadors, or if she was concealing her real feelings here as well. Bacon said of Elizabeth that she did not want to make windows into men's souls, and neither did she want a window made into her soul.
She was content to believe that God knew what was in her heart, about her faith as in so many other matters, and to let it be
. Sir Francis Bacon.
Yet her behavior in both the Maundy ceremony and the touch ceremony certainly give us hints as to her religious attitudes. In performing these ceremonies Elizabeth not only continued kingly practices but also the practices of medieval women saints; though Catholics did not allow women to be priests, they had not excluded women from the miraculous, particularly miraculous cures, and this power seemed closely connected with the saints' purity and virginity.
The many revered female saints, as Scarisbrick points out, "tempered male authority and ... asserted the dignity of womanhood.
" But these saints had been swept away, and many reformers had no use for virgins. Yet Elizabeth presented herself as a Virgin Queen, echoing the cult not only of the Virgin Mary, but also perhaps those of such saints as Frideswide and Uncumber
, both of whose shrines had been destroyed in 1538, both of whom were said to be daughters of kings, and both of whose power came from their determined virginity.
Uncumber, daughter of a pagan father, prayed to God for aid when her father attempted to force her to marry. She immediately grew a dense, curly beard, which was sufficiently off-putting for her suitor to leave her at the altar. Her father, in his fury, had her crucified.
In England, especially from the fourteenth century onward, Uncumber was the saint to whom unhappy wives prayed for succor, to be "disencumbered" of their husbands as Thomas More scornfully put it.
There were images of Uncumber in Norwich, Bristol, and Somerset as well as Westminster itself. But Lord Mayor of London Sir Richard Gresham had the Westminster statue taken down in August 1538. If Uncumber's beard might suggest a parallel with the male, kingly aspect of Elizabeth's self-representation, St. Frideswide, patron saint of Oxford, is a more direct comparison as a healer. St Uncumber.
Frideswide supposedly lived in the late seventh and early eighth centuries. The daughter of Didanus, an under-king, she was piously educated and early had a calling for a religious life. Despite her vows King Algar wished to make her his wife because of her beauty and wealth.
He threatened to burn down Oxford if Frideswide was not delivered up to him. Frideswide managed to escape. When Algar caught her she prayed to St. Catherine and St. Cecilia, and he was immediately struck blind. It was Frideswide's own prayerful intervention, once he repented, that restored his sight.
Frideswide founded a monastery and was known for her healing, possibly learned from her abbess/ aunt. Her shrine was decorated with delicately carved plants, all of which were known for their healing properties, to demonstrate Frideswide's great gift as a healer. St. Frideswide.
Her most remarkable healing was when a leper conjured her in the name of Christ to kiss him. Despite what was described as his "loathsome condition
" and her "fear of infection
," Frideswide made the sign of the cross and gave the leper a kiss. "Immediately the scales fell from him, and his flesh came again like that of a child
." She was able to cure a fisherman who was subject to violent fits, perhaps by casting the devils out of him. In some versions she also healed a blind girl, perhaps echoing the blindness and recovery of sight of Algar.
The relics of St. Frideswide were preserved in a beautiful shrine at Oxford in a chapel dedicated to her. During Lent and again on Ascension Day, the Chancellor of Oxford, and principal members of the University, along with the scholars, came to the shrine in solemn procession proffering gifts.
Especially during the twelfth century there were numerous instances of the faithful being miraculously cured after a pilgrimage to her shrine.
Of those who came to be cured, women outnumbered men two to one, and many of these diseases had to do with specifically female maladies
, including madness or severe pain caused by intercourse. Prayers at St. Frideswide's shrine also cured one knight's daughter of scofula, which makes the identitification of Frideswide with Elizabeth even more powerful.
In the later Middle Ages St. Frideswide's shrine was Oxford's richest church, and St. Frideswide's fair, sanctioned by a charter from Henry I, was the most important one in Oxford.
The fair received particular attention in 1382 and 1384 because of a dispute between the University and St. Frideswide's Priory over jurisdiction. St. Frideswide must have been a well-known saint in the medieval England. In "The Miller's Tale" Chaucer has the carpenter call out "Help us, seinte Frydeswyde!"
...We have no direct evidence that Elizabeth saw herself as a continuation of such saints as Uncumber and Frideswide.
Nor that those who thronged for her touch were consciously making such a connection. But surely the tradition of the virgin saint as healer would resonate as well for a Virgin Queen who healed by touch. Throughout medieval and early modem England there was a strong belief in magical healers, and the king was the most magical of all.
Kings had touched to cure the afflicted in England since the time of the saintly Edward the Confessor. After the Norman Conquest it seems that English kings saw the effect of the French people spontaneously going to their king to be cured and copied the measure as an effective means to gain religious-political support.
Yet the practice seems to have waxed and waned in England in the Middle Ages. Despite Fortescue's concerns, there appears to have been relatively little touching for the king's evil by English kings in the fifteenth century, and we have no records of either Edward IV or Richard III touching, though Edward did have cramp rings made to distribute, another form of magical healing
. Henry VII, after a century or more of comparative neglect, restored the ceremony of the touch to all its dignity and established a full ceremonial, with a set office of service. Henry, whose claim to the throne by the right of primogeniture was weak, used a number of techniques to assure his prestige, including claiming his descent from the mythological King Arthur and producing a round table repainted in the Tudor colors of white and green which he claimed was the original round table.
In the same way he named his eldest son Arthur.
Touching for the king's evil, which could only be accomplished by the Lord's anointed, and which suggested the work of Christ himself, would be another means to assure his position.
The touching became highly ritualized, and Henry VII gave each of the affiicted a gold angel as well as the king's healing touch. Just as touching increased the monarch's prestige, so too did maintaining the practice of washing the feet of the poor on Maundy Thursday, the day before Good Friday and a time of year heavy with religious portent.
By the Tudor period the monarch had become clearly associated with the Maundy ceremony. The ceremony of washing the feet of the poor, done in imitation of Christ washing the feet of his disciples at the end of the Last Supper, was a part of the Easter vigil and had been included in the church service for many centuries.
In the Bible Christ told his disciples, "If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet, ye also ought to wash one another's feet I For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done unto you
." The Mandatum, or rite of the Washing of the Feet, was thus originally a simple act of charity very common in the Church. It became a liturgical rite sometime between the fifth and the seventh century. By the eleventh century the practice was being carried out in Rome. The Pope washed the feet of twelve subdeacons at the end of the evening Mass on Holy Thursday
. When the other Holy Thursday rites were moved to the morning hours during the fourteenth century, the Mandatum remained a separate service to be held in the afternoon. The ceremony of the Maundy was known in Britain by at least 600.
…When Mary became queen in 1553, she continued these ceremonies
, investing them with great dignity as well as obvious personal feelings of piety. Elizabeth continued them as well. One reason that these ceremonies became so ritualized is that these functions were part of a larger theatricalization of royalty intended to achieve and demonstrate power.
By the sixteenth century, the monarch had become even more important symbolically; the image of the monarch, idealized as God's representative on earth, was a means to secure the people's allegiance
. The Tudors, who ruled without a standing army or an extensive police force, had their power "constituted in theatrical celebrations of royal glory
," in Stephen Greenblatt's words. For queens ruling instead of kings, this aspect of power through ritual and spectacle could be particularly important, though Elizabeth took much more advantage of it than Mary. The Mandatum.
…Elizabeth was far more aware of how to use spectacle to enhance the prestige of the monarchy, which she did from the very beginning of her reign in her coronation ceremony and procession through London the day before her coronation
. Thus we know even more about Elizabeth's practices, and have a number of accounts of both her Maundy ceremonies and her touching for the king's evil. For Mary as a woman to continue these practices was already an unusual situation, but as a Catholic Mary wanted to re-establish practices that were not only royal but Roman.
For Elizabeth, the situation was more difficult and complex. She was a woman ruler, a "female-king" who had also to balance the variety of demands on her for religious reform.
Looking at what ceremonial she retained and what she let go gives us an insight not only into Elizabeth's religious sensibilities, but also a glimpse into the cultural attitudes of the English Renaissance toward religion and queenship
. The use of these religious ceremonies fit well with Elizabeth's self-presentation as the Virgin Queen, an image she presented to her people as a means to replace the Virgin Mary and help heal the rupture created by the break with the Catholic Church. Elizabeth and her Councillors deliberately appropriated the symbolism and prestige of the suppressed Marian cult in order to foster the cult of the Virgin Queen
. This proved a powerful resource for Elizabeth in dealing with the political problems of her regime. The identification of Elizabeth with the Virgin Mary, which developed in the mid-1570s, was very effective in encouraging loyalty to the queen. Re-enactment of Queen Elizabeth I touching for Queen's Evil of scrofula.
The worship of the Virgin Mary had been especially popular in England in the late Middle Ages, and well into the early sixteenth century. Simply denying her power and prestige, as Protestant reformers did, did not lessen the tremendous appeal the Virgin had for the popular imagination; it simply left a void.
The image of Elizabeth as a Virgin Queen helped to fill this void and at the same time was politically valuable since many English Protestants came to love and revere Elizabeth as they had previously loved and revered the virgin. People began to suggest that one ought to say, "Long live Eliza!" instead of "Hail Mary!"
John Buxton describes the famous picture of Elizabeth being carried to Blackfriars as "like the Virgin Mary in a religious procession: a comparison her subjects did not hesitate to draw.
We can see this identification in many other contexts. A number of the symbols used to represent Elizabeth as Virgin Queen-the Rose, the Star, the Moon, the Phoenix, the Ermine, and the Pearl-were also symbols that had been used previously to represent the Virgin Mary.
Roy Strong suggests that, although Protestant England banned religious images as idolatrous, images of the monarch were accorded the kind of ceremonial deference reserved for religious icons.
In time, many of her subjects did accept Elizabeth as an acceptable substitute for the Virgin Mary, and their adulation assumed a religious coloring
. For example, many of the members of Elizabeth's court believed that having the queen visit on progress was tantamount to having their house blessed.
The rainbow portrait, loaded with symbolism.
Lord Burghley wrote about Elizabeth's visit to Theobalds as "consecrating" it
; Burghley treated her so splendidly there that she visited a number of times, which was a great if costly honor. Elizabeth's progresses were critical in systematically promoting the cult of the Virgin Queen for people of all classes all over the country. Sir Robert Burton suggested the very sight of the monarch could "refresh the soul of man."
Magnificent, idealized portraits of Elizabeth also functioned to legitimate her power and gain loyalty. The celebration of Elizabeth's accession day, November 17, took on religious significance and the trappings of a religious festival, in part, suggests David Cressy, "to compensate for the reduction in holy days" in the calendar. In fact, this day was sometimes known as "the queen's holy day."
The festivities included public thanksgiving for her safety, sermons, and the ringing of bells, in addition to the more expected and secular contests such as tournaments and signs of rejoicing and triumph.
After the abortive rebellion in the north in 1569 and the bull of excommunication of 1570, public celebrations marking Elizabeth's accession began spontaneously
. The first was in Oxford in 1570. They soon spread through the kingdom and were established officially. Elizabeth's government felt a need for a public display of celebration that demonstrated that all the threatening dangers had been overcome.
The day "attracted much of the festive and liturgical energy that had formerly been reserved for saints' days
." Her accession was formally introduced as a church holiday in 1576, with a specific service and liturgy
. …From then onward November 17 was kept as a day of patriotic rejoicing, "in the forme of a Holy Day
," as Thomas Holland said in a sermon in 1599 to answer those that "uncharitably traduced the honour of the realm
In at least some years, two days after the accession day festivities, on November 19
, there were further sports to celebrate St. Elizabeth's day
, the queen's namesake. "Then the nineteenth day, being St. Elizabeth's day, the Earl of Cumberland, the Earl of Essex, and my Lord Burgh, did challenge all comers six courses apiece; which was very honourably performed
." Another day of organized public celebration was September 7, Elizabeth's birthday.
There were prayers in church, ringing of bells, bonfires, and parties. One prayer asked God to bless Elizabeth and curse her enenues, to fight against those that fight against her .... Bless them that blesse her. Curse them that curse her .... Lett her rise. Lett them fall. Lett her flourish. Lett them perish.
…The celebration of Elizabeth's birthday was particularly offensive to English Catholics because September 7 was, coincidentally, the eve of the feast of the nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Catholics such as Edward Rishton complained that the English Protestants were ignoring this holy day
, "and to show the greater contempt for our Blessed lady, they keep the birthday of queen Elizabeth in the most solemn way on the 7th day of September, which is the eve of the feast of the Mother of God, whose nativity they mark in their calendar in small and black letters, while that of Elizabeth is marked in letters both large and red. And what is hardly credible, in the church of St Paul, the chief church of London ... the praises of Elizabeth are said to be sung at the end of the public prayers, as the Antiphon of our lady was sung former days
But many of her loyal subjects regarded the fact that Elizabeth should share the nativity of the Virgin Mary as more than simply coincidence; they considered it a divine omen.
It proved to them that Elizabeth and the Anglican Church were sustained and sanctified by divine providence. This belief was further intensified by the date of Elizabeth's death, March 24, which was the eve of the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary.
Soon after the queen died one anonymous Latin elegy asked, "do you wish to know why it was on the Eve of the Lady that the holy Eliza ascended into heaven?
" The answer emphasizes the direct parallels commonly perceived between Elizabeth and the Virgin Mary: Being on the point of death she chose that day for herself because in their lives these two were as one. Mary was a Virgin, she, Elizabeth, was also; Mary was blessed; Elizabeth was blessed among the race of women .... Mary bore God in her womb, but Elizabeth bore God in her heart. Although in all other respects they are like twins, it is in this latter respect alone that there are not of equal rank. And touching for the king's evil became even more popular in her reign.
Both her chaplain, William Tooker (1597), and her surgeon, William Clowes (1602), wrote books about scrofula and Elizabeth's remarkable talent for healing it through touch. It seems clear that Elizabeth chose to keep the ceremonies that were most public and had greatest value as spectacle and allow the less public ones to fall into disuse. Elizabeth expressed herself eager to cure by touching throughout her reign.
During her reign, instead of a fixed season for touching as had been done previously, occasions were arranged according to Elizabeth's inclinations, particularly when she felt a divine directive or when she was strongly importuned by the applicants or their patrons.
Sufferers would give their names to the royal Surgeons, who would examine each patient carefully to be sure the disease was really the Evil and there were no impostures.
They would then submit a list to the queen who would appoint a day, usually a Friday, Sunday, or feast day. The ceremony often took place at St. Stephen's Chapel in the ancient palace of Westminster, though Elizabeth also touched to heal while on progress, thus not only presenting the ceremony through the mediating filter of her Court, but also demonstrating this prestige through the theatricalization of ritual in other parts of her kingdom.
Her chaplain William Tooker described how intensely she prayed to be able to transmit the healing touch. "How often have I seen her most serene Majesty, prostrate on her knees, body and soul rapt in prayer . . . how often have I seen her with her exquisite hands, whiter than whitest snow, boldly and without disgust, pressing their sores and ulcers
*, and handling them to health ...* how often have I seen her worn with fatigue, as when in one single day, she healed eight and thirty persons of the struma
…Though clearly aware of the value of the theatricalization of holy ritual, we may assume that Elizabeth did not touch simply for the propaganda value it afforded her. She apparently took the ceremony very seriously, and at times did not feel that at that specific moment she had the inspiration to cure by touching.
At Gloucester, when throngs of the afflicted came to her for her aid, she had to deny them, telling them, "Would, would that I could give you help and succour. God, God is the best and greatest physician of all-you must pray to him.
" It is possible that Elizabeth may have refused to touch because she was menstruating, which would have made her touch polluting. This may also be why Elizabeth did not touch in a fixed season, since this sometimes might have coincided with her periods, which were irregular.
Popular culture in medieval and early modern England believed the touch of a menstruating woman could have disastrous effects on men, cows, gardens, bees, milk, wine
, and much more, even if medical authorities of the time denied it.
The effectiveness of the queen's touch was a potent political force for her, and a weapon against the ire of the pope. Indeed, the Protestant English feared the pope, whom Sir Walter Mildmay, for one, described as England's "most mortal and capital enemy." They believed that each Maundy Thursday he pronounced a solemn anathema against all heretics and enemies.
There was particular concern after the pope issued a bull of excommunication against Elizabeth in 1570. English Protestants publicly discounted the papal bull on the grounds that Elizabeth still had the God-given ability of a true monarch to cure by touch, and even English Catholics as well as Protestants continued to go to Elizabeth to be healed by her touch. Excommunication bull, 25th february 1570.
…Writing at the end of her reign, her surgeon William Clowes prayed for Elizabeth, whose long life, much happines, peace and tranquility, let us all (according to our bounden dutyes) continually pray unto the Almighty God, that he will blesse, keepe and defend her Sacred person
*, from the malice of all her knowne and unknowne enemies,* so that shee may forever raigne over us, (if it please the Lord God) even unto the ende of the world
*, still to cure and heale many thousands moe, then ever she hath yet done*. Clowe's prayer, that Elizabeth might live and rule and cure until the end of the world, projects her not only into the sacred but beyond human into the divine.
But we do need to take care how seriously we accept this prayer.
In fact, Elizabeth in 1602 was a woman close to seventy years old, who was, in some people's eyes, especially after the Essex rebellion and its attack on both her person and her monarchy, clearly failing
. And while imagery of the sacred was part of the way her people viewed Elizabeth, it was only one aspect of a multi-sided presentation; her gender and questions around her sexuality were also important and possibly troubling aspects of the way the English viewed their queen.
Yet for at least some of her subjects the discomfort they may have felt in seeing a woman rule and perform such actions had been lost in appreciation for all Elizabeth had done as a sacred monarch, one who both blessed and cured with a queen's touch
- Carole Levin, “Elizabeth as Sacred Monarch.” in The Heart and Stomach of a King: Elizabeth I and the Politics of Sex and Power
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2023.04.01 14:29 kingu42 Reports: Walmart (NYSE: WMT) Acquires USPS in Surprise Deal
Projecting Changes for Retail Shipping Industry
By Associated Press with contributions from Abha Bhattarai (Washington Post)
Updated 8:12 EDT with comments from Treasury Secretary
In a surprise move, Walmart (NYSE: WMT) has announced that it has acquired the United States Postal Service (USPS). The deal, which is valued at $80 billion, is the largest acquisition in Walmart's history.
“The deal utterly changes the reach of Walmart+’s same day delivery market making most every address in the United States eligible for at will delivery of Walmart’s products and services,” noted one analyst. “Make an order at 10pm, it is delivered by your postal worker the following morning. Not since Amazon Fresh was attempted and later failed due to their limited distribution centers has such a fundamental chance to the landscape of retail delivery taken place.”
Others were not so pleased by the news – a Black Rock investment analyst noted that this puts in doubt the Amazon delivery contract which could dramatically cripple Walmart’s strongest competitor. “Hopefully regulators will step forward and prevent Walmart from cancelling this contract, but at this time, we’re recommending sell to our customers as we don’t see any method which would preserve Amazon’s existing deal, they’d be just like every other shipper using the new service.”
The acquisition is also seen as a way for Walmart to improve its reputation with customers. The USPS has been criticized in recent years for its slow delivery times and soaring prices. By acquiring USPS, Walmart will be able to improve the quality of service and make it more affordable for customers to ship packages stated a company press release given to reporters.
The acquisition is likely to face scrutiny from regulators, who will be concerned about Walmart's growing power in the retail market. However, Walmart has said that it is committed to working with regulators to ensure that the deal is approved.
The unexpected move has caught the four major unions of USPS surprised, union president Brian Renfroe who is currently negotiating for a new contract for the National Association of Letter Carriers gave a terse 'no comment' to reporters outside of L'Enfant Plaza when news broke, and negotiations immediately broke down. Later, he was reported to have said that he was going to fly to Bentonville, AK to begin negotiations anew with the new owners.
A national business agent who requested their name not be used stated that the NALC is looking forward to being the first union to have a real contract with Walmart and is angling to represent all unionized employees within the new combined company. "I'm just glad it was us at the negotiating table when this news broke, can you imagine if it had been the rural union?"
If the deal is approved, it is likely to have a significant impact on the retail industry. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen's office referred reporters to USPS for any further comment but noted that the deal would completely pay off USPS' existing treasury debt and the Treasury Department would not give their nod to the deal without Walmart fully accepting retirement benefits responsibility for 172,000 active retirees from USPS.
Walmart will become the largest retailer in the United States, and it will be able to use its size and power to negotiate better prices with suppliers. This could lead to lower prices for consumers. No word yet if Walmart plans to rename the United States Postal Service, but analysts predict that it could be named Walmart+ Delivery to capitalize on Walmart's existing assets.
The acquisition is also likely to lead to job losses at the USPS. Walmart has said that it plans to reduce the number of USPS employees by 20%. This could lead to layoffs for thousands of workers. Taking a page from Walmart's existing policies, most of those layoffs will be in management and middle management with stations being run by employee leaders, leading to large savings.
Shares of UPS (NYSE:UPS), FedEx (NYSE:FDX), and others within the shipping industry are sharply down with financial markets worried that Walmart's cash infusion could finally solve many issues, including equipment and facilities in disrepair.
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2023.04.01 14:21 toursoman6 Wadi Shab
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Wadi Shab is a picturesque canyon located in Oman, which offers a unique coastal trekking experience. This hidden gem is perfect for adventure-seekers and nature enthusiasts who are looking to explore the rugged beauty of Oman's coastline.
https://toursoman.com/wadi-shab-oman/ Introduction: Wadi Shab, A Coastal Trekking Adventure
Located in the Al Sharqiyah region of Oman, Wadi Shab is a popular tourist destination, which is gaining recognition for its beautiful landscapes and unique coastal trekking experience. The wadi is situated in between the mountains, and as you approach it, you are welcomed by the stunning turquoise water that flows through it. This article will take you on a journey through Wadi Shab and share some of the highlights that make it a must-visit destination. Section 1: Getting There
To reach Wadi Shab, you will need to drive approximately 140 kilometers from the capital city of Muscat. The journey takes around 1 hour and 30 minutes by car, and you will pass through several small towns and villages before arriving at the wadi. It is recommended to hire a car or take a taxi to get there, as public transportation options are limited. Section 2: The Trek
Once you arrive at the wadi, the trek begins with a short boat ride across the water. After disembarking, you will follow a narrow trail along the edge of the water, which leads to a series of natural pools and waterfalls. The trek is relatively easy, and the trail is well-maintained, making it accessible to most people. Section 3: Swimming in the Pools
One of the highlights of the trek is swimming in the crystal-clear pools that are scattered throughout the wadi. The water is cool and refreshing, and it's the perfect way to cool off after a long hike. As you swim, you can look up and see the towering cliffs that surround you, creating a truly unique and awe-inspiring experience. Section 4: Exploring the Caves
Another exciting feature of Wadi Shab is the network of caves that can be found throughout the wadi. These caves were formed by the water flowing through the rock over thousands of years and provide a fascinating glimpse into Oman's geological history. You can explore the caves on foot or by swimming through them, but be sure to bring a flashlight, as some areas can be quite dark. Section 5: The Waterfall
At the end of the trek, you will reach a breathtaking waterfall that cascades down into a large pool. This is the perfect spot to rest and take in the stunning surroundings, or you can jump into the pool and swim under the waterfall. It's an exhilarating experience that will leave you feeling invigorated and refreshed. Section 6: Tips for Visiting Wadi Shab
Before you embark on your adventure to Wadi Shab, here are some tips that can help make your visit more enjoyable:
Section 7: Best Time to Visit
- Wear appropriate clothing: As the trek involves swimming, it's best to wear lightweight clothing that dries quickly. You should also wear sturdy shoes with good traction, as some areas can be slippery.
- Bring plenty of water: It's important to stay hydrated, especially in Oman's hot and dry climate. Make sure to bring enough water for the entire trek, as there are no shops or vendors along the way.
- Respect the environment: Wadi Shab is a protected area, and it's important to respect the environment by not littering or damaging any of the natural features. You should also follow any instructions given by the guides or locals.
- Hire a guide: While the trek is relatively easy, it's recommended to hire a local guide who can show you the best spots and provide insight into the history and culture of the area.
The best time to visit Wadi Shab is between October and April, when the weather is cooler and more pleasant for outdoor activities. During the summer months, temperatures can soar, making it challenging to enjoy the trek. It's also important to check the weather forecast before visiting, as flash floods can occur during heavy rain. Section 8: Other Nearby Attractions
If you have extra time in the area, there are other nearby attractions that you can visit, including:
Plan your trip to Wadi Shab through tours Oman.
- Tiwi Beach: A beautiful beach located near Wadi Shab, with crystal-clear water and white sand.
- Bimmah Sinkhole: A natural sinkhole located in Bimmah, which is believed to have been formed by a meteorite impact.
- Ras Al Jinz Turtle Reserve: A turtle sanctuary located near Sur, where you can watch endangered sea turtles laying their eggs.