Celebratory Screen-Shots: TESO Anniversary Event!

In light of the special events taking place during the three-year anniversary of the launching of The Elder Scrolls Online (TESO), I figured that I’d share a few screen-shots of the fun and festivities! If this doesn’t entice at least ONE of my readers to join in, then nothing will…but, that won’t stop me from enjoying this multi-layered, engaging, hellaciously fun game. With the upcoming addition of the Morrowind expansion, I expect to be playing for the next five years, at least!

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Anniversary voucher

Hmmm…a special cake?

The well-renowned chef

Better-looking than Gordon Ramsay…

…far easier to speak with…

…and much easier to please!

Giving the required ingredients

Waiting patiently with the crowd

Yes – it’s done!

Freshly-baked goods…

…let us eat cake!

Anniversary gift box after completing a daily quest – there are many!

Relaxing at a keep after battle

4 April 2017: This Day in History

Today marks the day that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated by a rabid racist at the Lorraine Hotel in Memphis, Tennessee. It was a year to the day that he gave a speech that is lesser-known, but infinitely more powerful than, the often-mentioned but woefully mis-quoted “I Have a Dream” speech. The “Beyond Vietnam” speech, given at Riverside Church on 4 April 1967, caused his relationship with the Johnson administration to deteriorate:

King had been a solid supporter of President Lyndon B. Johnson and his Great Society, but he became increasingly concerned about U.S. involvement in Vietnam and, as his concerns became more public, his relationship with the Johnson administration deteriorated. King came to view U.S. intervention in Southeast Asia as little more than imperialism. Additionally, he believed that the Vietnam War diverted money and attention from domestic programs created to aid the black poor. Furthermore, he said, ‘the war was doing far more than devastating the hopes of the poor at home…We were taking the black young men who had been crippled by our society and sending them eight thousand miles away to guarantee liberties in Southeast Asia which they had not found in southwest Georgia and East Harlem.’” King maintained his antiwar stance and supported peace movements until he was assassinated on April 4, 1968, one year to the day after delivering his Beyond Vietnam speech.”

That deterioration is prime evidence of the way white people expect Black people to toe the line of “respectability politics” by “taking the high road” while demanding that we “know our place.” If we dare speak out about our personal experiences in an open, honest fashion, whites close their ears, turn their backs, and accuse us of being “unreasonable” and “racially charged” – the same accusations which were levied against Dr. King during even the most peaceful marches he organized.

Dr. King was instrumental in advancing the cause for equality, even in the face of segregation, Jim Crow laws, and personal attacks on both himself and his family. He accomplished much in just under 13 years:

Some of Dr. King’s most important achievements include:

~ In 1955, he was recruited to serve as spokesman for the Montgomery Bus Boycott, which was a campaign by the African-American population of Montgomery, Alabama to force integration of the city’s bus lines. After 381 days of nearly universal participation by citizens of the black community, many of whom had to walk miles to work each day as a result, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that racial segregation in transportation was unconstitutional.

~ In 1957, Dr. King was elected president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), an organization designed to provide new leadership for the now burgeoning civil rights movement. He would serve as head of the SCLC until his assassination in 1968, a period during which he would emerge as the most important social leader of the modern American civil rights movement.

~ In 1963, he led a coalition of numerous civil rights groups in a nonviolent campaign aimed at Birmingham, Alabama, which at the time was described as the “most segregated city in America.” The subsequent brutality of the city’s police, illustrated most vividly by television images of young blacks being assaulted by dogs and water hoses, led to a national outrage resulting in a push for unprecedented civil rights legislation. It was during this campaign that Dr. King drafted the “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” the manifesto of Dr. King’s philosophy and tactics, which is today required-reading in universities worldwide.

~ Later in 1963, Dr. King was one of the driving forces behind the March for Jobs and Freedom, more commonly known as the “March on Washington,” which drew over a quarter-million people to the national mall. It was at this march that Dr. King delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech, which cemented his status as a social change leader and helped inspire the nation to act on civil rights. Dr. King was later named Time magazine’s “Man of the Year.”

~ In 1964, at 35 years old, Martin Luther King, Jr. became the youngest person to win the Nobel Peace Prize. His acceptance speech in Oslo is thought by many to be among the most powerful remarks ever delivered at the event, climaxing at one point with the oft-quoted phrase “I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right temporarily defeated is stronger than evil triumphant.”

~ Also in 1964, partly due to the March on Washington, Congress passed the landmark Civil Rights Act, essentially eliminating legalized racial segregation in the United States. The legislation made it illegal to discriminate against blacks or other minorities in hiring, public accommodations, education or transportation, areas which at the time were still very segregated in many places.

~ The next year, 1965, Congress went on to pass the Voting Rights Act, which was an equally-important set of laws that eliminated the remaining barriers to voting for African-Americans, who in some locales had been almost completely disenfranchised. This legislation resulted directly from the Selma to Montgomery, AL March for Voting Rights lead by Dr. King.

~ Between 1965 and 1968, Dr. King shifted his focus toward economic justice – which he highlighted by leading several campaigns in Chicago, Illinois – and international peace – which he championed by speaking out strongly against the Vietnam War. His work in these years culminated in the “Poor Peoples Campaign,” which was a broad effort to assemble a multiracial coalition of impoverished Americans who would advocate for economic change.

~ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s less than thirteen years of nonviolent leadership ended abruptly and tragically on April 4th, 1968, when he was assassinated at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. Dr. King’s body was returned to his hometown of Atlanta, Georgia, where his funeral ceremony was attended by high-level leaders of all races and political stripes.”

It’s a shame that the political landscape is returning to those days. The Voting Rights Act has been virtually stripped by the same people who most likely cheered and celebrated Dr. King’s assassination. People tell themselves the lie that racism is over, simply because the U.S. had a Black president, and use that as an excuse to denigrate the Civil Rights Act and claim that discrimination simply doesn’t happen to non-white people anymore. That is a load of rubbish that raises huge red flags to me whenever I see or it claimed anywhere, by anyone. I look at his words and actions as a whole and in context. Cherry-picking two quotes from one speech, as many are prone to do, is limiting and insulting – but it is the modus operandi of the covert racist, a group that has come out of the woodwork over the past couple of years. They have been emboldened and empowered as of late, so vigilance and resistance is a necessity – more so now than ever.

Mid-Week Amusements: Food & Comedy!

It’s a nice, relaxing Wednesday, and the delicious aroma of home-made beef stew is wafting through the house. Cooking is such an enjoyable thing to do, especially with fresh ingredients! I figured that I’d show a few of the vegetables which I like to use in stews, much like my previous post about the things I toss in with my chicken soup.

Onions, shallots, and garlic make up the base – I don’t think that any dinner is complete unless it has at least one of those flavourful bulbs included! Carrots may or may not be used, since the variety of root vegetables used more than makes up for their omission. These herbs and vegetables round out the meal:

Thyme

Rosemary

Oregano

Parsnip

Turnip

Rutabaga

Red potatoes

I love using fresh herbs of many different types…the picture below shows a few of my go-tos.

Baseball season is just around the corner – I’m looking forward to it, as always! When spring arrives, the “Boys of Summer” aren’t far behind…also, my comedy shows are back with new episodes, after being pre-empted by the overly long and drawn-out “March Madness.” Don’t get me wrong, I like basketball well enough. I just happen to prefer baseball, football (American, non-arena), and rugby if / when I can catch it on television!

Anyway, since I’m amusing myself with some choice comedy bits, I thought that I’d share them with you. Sometimes, a good laugh does a body good, and these clips had me in a fit of giggles!

Shining the Blacklight on American Democracy

Drumpf’s Agenda: Today, America…Tomorrow, the World!

Conan O’Brien talks about the United Airlines dress code

Conan O’Brien hits Comic-Con(R) Mad Max-Style (2015)

Finally, this post wouldn’t be complete without a couple of nods to yesterday’s post about bots and the role they play in various online scams. Behind every bot, troll, sock-puppet and cat-phish is someone looking to give you the old “Rick-Roll!”

Sunday Screen-Shots: Jester’s Festival!

Beginning last year, seasonal festivities began in my favourite MMO, the Elder Scrolls Online. The first one, appropriately titled the Witches’ Festival, was in October. The second one, held in December, was called the New Life Festival.

With the advent of Spring, the Jester’s Festival is in full swing – perfect timing as April Fool’s Day / All Fool’s Day draws near! Here are a few screen-shots of my various characters making merry, playing pranks, and having all sorts of fun with other players. Sometimes, one has to stop and smell the sakura ( / )!

I’ll have live footage of my festival antics broadcasting shortly. I think that people know where to find the link by now, so tune in and watch the show!

Savage Smilodon

A happy merry-maker

Marketplace merriment

Dancing at dawn

Playing with fire

Kicking back

Flashy fireworks

Dazzling the crowds

A sprightly dance – see the staff?

I found the Lord of Misrule: Drumpf the Jester-King!

Timothy Caughman: Victim of Domestic Terrorism

This is Timothy Caughman, the 66-year-old Black man who was brutally murdered in New York City on 20 March. His killer, James Harris Jackson, is a self-described “white supremacist” who harbored intense hatred for Black people in general, but Black men in particular. He turned himself in to the local authorities in the wee hours of 22 March, after stabbing Mr. Caughman multiple times with a 24-inch, double-edged sword:

On his Twitter page, 66-year-old Timothy Caughman described himself as a “can and bottle recycler” as well as an “autograph collector.” He hoped to visit California one day and expressed his deep love for this country on Election Day by standing in line and taking part in the democratic process. However, Caughman lived in a country where everyone did not love him back. Since the election of Donald Trump as president, the nation has seen a rise in hate crimes and bigotry. On Monday, Caughman became a victim of one of those hate crimes.

On March 17, Army veteran James Harris Jackson, 28, took the Bolt Bus from Baltimore to New York City with an extremely disgusting plan in mind: to kill Black men. Days later, Jackson crossed paths with Caughman as he collected bottles close to the Midtown homeless shelter where he lived. The altercation turned deadly when Jackson pulled out a sword and stabbed Caughman multiple times in the torso.

After the brutal attack, Caughman stumbled into a nearby police precinct with wounds to his back and chest, said Assistant Chief William Aubry, the commander of Manhattan South detectives, as reported by the New York Times. Caughman was then transported to Bellevue Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.”

A quiet man who was minding his own business became a victim of domestic terrorism, yet no buildings will dim their lights for him. Only the people who knew and cared about Mr. Caughman will be holding a candlelight vigil, or placing flowers near the place where his life was taken. The standard, ridiculous excuses of “insanity” are already being bandied about by heartless lawyers. They offer up that lame defense as if it were a valid excuse, but there is no defense or excuse for the inbred cretin who murdered Mr. Caughman in a most up-close-and-personal way.

I lit a candle for Mr. Caughman – it’s the least I can do. Doing a little bit, sometimes, is better than doing nothing at all. Many people don’t seem to understand or respect that. It’s a shame.

Sunday Screen-Shots: 22 January 2017

Random Ramblings; Myriad Musings

I selected some screen-shots of a few of the pets that I “own” in-game. Every warrior needs a good companion, especially we solitary roamers! A friendly ear is always good to have around.

😉

Winged Adder

Desert Hound

Floating Baby Jelly

Winged Orange Flame-Toad

Black n’ White Piggy

Turquoise Dragonfly-Pixie

Black Panthers

Miniature Mammoth

Sun Salutation

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Midweek Musings: International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day, and March is Women’s History Month. What, if anything, do these observances mean to myself and other women around the world? It depends on who you ask, where that person resides, and what their perspectives and experiences are. When I talk with others, I look for common ground and relatable experiences to initiate dialogue. Then, if I find a difference in personal experiences between myself and another, I ask questions in an attempt to learn about and understand that person’s unique experiences. The funny thing about this is, even the most basic questions that I ask of others never really get answered! This makes it difficult to know where another person is coming from, and makes it virtually impossible to meet them halfway with anything.

These hiccups in communication mostly occur in online interactions, especially when there are differences in language and culture. Mistakes in translation can create unintended offense on both ends. This is why I prefer speaking with others face-to-face: it’s easier to gauge the veracity and intent of the person with whom I’m speaking, and enables one to clear up any misunderstandings right away!

What does this observation have to do with International Women’s Day, you might ask? Plenty. After all, I am one woman in this big world. Therefore, my observations, experiences and perspectives are just as important on this day as that of any other real, genuine, XX-chromosome-bearing woman. International Women’s Day, and Women’s History Month, still seem more tailored for the Euro-centric and Anglo-identifying ones. Inclusion is still lacking, from what I see – but, that’s just my perspective!

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Saturday Songs for “the Quiet Beatle”

George Harrison: 25 February 1943 – 29 November 2001

I wanted to play some Saturday songs in honour of George Harrison, known as “the Quiet Beatle” of “Fab Four” fame. Today marks what would have been his 74th birthday, were it not for his untimely death in 2001 at the age of 58 due to complications from throat and lung cancer. He also survived an attempt on his life in 1999, when a madman broke into his house and proceeded to stab him multiple times. From Wikipedia:

On 30 December 1999, Harrison and his wife were attacked at their home, Friar Park. Michael Abram, a 36-year-old fan, broke in and attacked Harrison with a kitchen knife, puncturing a lung and causing head injuries before Olivia Harrison incapacitated the assailant by striking him repeatedly with a fireplace poker and a lamp.[166][168] Following the attack, Harrison was hospitalised with more than 40 stab wounds. He released a statement soon afterwards regarding his assailant: “[he] wasn’t a burglar, and he certainly wasn’t auditioning for the Traveling Wilburys.”

While I quite like the music that John, Paul, and Ringo put out after the Beatles went their separate ways, I always felt that George was the heart and soul of that group. His spirituality and gentle nature were qualities that I appreciated in him, and felt an affinity with. Here’s my little musical tribute to this legendary genius…enjoy.

Saturday Screen-Shots; Streaming Schedule!

My performance tests are complete – all systems are go! There are some minor glitches still holding up YouTube uploads, but everything else is running like clockwork and functioning as it should. I can now post a schedule for my gaming broadcasts, if any of you are interested in watching some real-time, live gameplay! I’ve even provided a survey if anyone has any suggestions or comments. The survey will be up for a week; the comments for this post will automatically close after two weeks.

For now, here are a few of my favourite past screen-shots from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, and The Elder Scrolls Online. More gaming action will be streamed within an hour of this post’s publishing…please tune in and check it out!

😎

Blood-covered statue

Goddess of dusk & dawn

Two moons

Beautiful aurorae

Dragon-rider

Surrounding a scroll

Outside the fortress walls

Relaxing in the bath-house

Underground refuge

Majestic statue

Thursday Thoughts: The Marches

On Friday, 20 January, Orange Hitler the Drumpf was sworn in as the 45th president of these divided United States. On Saturday, 21 January, people all over this country – and in places all over the world – walked out of their doors and into the streets. They wanted to make their voices heard and their displeasure known.

If you believe the “alternative facts” reported by the talking plastic bobble-heads over at FauxNews, or the racist, misogynist crap spewed on Breitbart and other nazi sites, the marches were only done in “liberal cities on the coasts.” I found that laughable, especially when Samantha Bee quite handily disproved that lie on her show last night. I also found it laughable because of what I learned yesterday while I was out running errands, and getting my annual eye checkup done.

I used to live in Seattle. I lived there for a little over a decade, then moved to Portland, OR and lived there for five years. I eventually moved to Vancouver, WA, and lived there for three years before moving to my current residence on the southwest coast of Washington state, which isn’t far from the Oregon border. I live approximately 35 minutes away from the coastal town of Astoria, Oregon.

I mention this because I didn’t attend any marches on Saturday. If I still resided in Portland, Seattle, or Vancouver, you can bet that I would have. I would have made a massive sign, then consigned anyone that I knew who could knit or crochet to make me a “rasta-style” pussy-hat. I would then have gotten my happy ass to the nearest group and joined all of the other “nasty women” and the men who love us, and walked along in support and unity. Since I’m out here on the coast, away from the “liberal cities,” I figured that there was nothing close that I could get to. The weather, as well as the crappy traffic in those places, made it pretty much impossible to go. I contented myself with calling my state representatives and letting them know how I feel about upcoming votes that they will be casting over the next few months.

Anyway, imagine my surprise when I saw the front cover of a local newspaper, the Chinook Observer. It showed a picture of people in Astoria, Oregon, marching on Saturday, sporting pussy-hats and carrying signs. Let me tell you: Astoria is not a city (population approx. 9,000). It is certainly not liberal (85% Republican), and it is far from diverse (main ethnic group: whites of Scandinavian descent). But on Saturday, there were at least 1,300 people marching in the cold and wet weather, showing support for all of the women who were marching in Washington, D.C. That made my heart and soul glow…even out here, in mostly-white, conservative communities, there are still people who aren’t happy with whom the electoral college selected to lead this country.

If I had known that a march was planned, I would have been there. Even though I’d stick out like a sore thumb, I would have been there and gladly linked arms with whomever wanted to. I’m sorry that I missed it…but, I’m glad that it happened. It gives me a bit of hope, and I feel just a tiny bit less alone out here. There are others who, at the very least, feel exactly the same way that I do. We’re exercising our rights to free speech until the dictator-at-large silences us the same way he ordered the silence of people working for our national park service, and those at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). We must speak out. We must protect the rights that WE ALL have, not curb and cut them, and give them to a select few.

You know the saying, “If you see something – say something!” Guess what? That’s exactly what’s happening. We see something – so, we’re saying something. We won’t shut up. In this brave new world, where lies are now being spouted and Tweeted on a daily basis, and “alternative facts” are hurled like simian fecal matter, speaking the truth and sticking to reality is more paramount than ever before. Nothing good has ever come from a “leader” acting in this fashion. We can’t go back to those times.

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