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Topics - Doktor Howl

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Apple Talk / ANNNNND the boat is stuck again!
« on: April 15, 2021, 07:47:23 pm »

CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian authorities impounded a massive cargo vessel that blocked the Suez Canal last month amid a financial dispute with its owner, the canal chief and a judicial official said Tuesday.

Lt. Gen. Osama Rabie said the hulking Ever Given would not be allowed to leave the country until a compensation amount is settled on with the vessel’s Japanese owner, Shoei Kisen Kaisha Ltd.

“The vessel is now officially impounded,” he told Egypt’s state-run television late Monday. “They do not want to pay anything.”

There was no immediate comment from the vessel’s owner.

Apple Talk / Some random thoughts
« on: April 05, 2021, 05:58:44 pm »
Submarine helmsmen steer the boat, but can't see out a windshield.  I drive a car without paying much attention to what's in front of a windshield, so I have no advantage over the guy driving the submarine.

If I was a different kind of person, I'd have done something about my anger issues years ago.  But if I was that kind of person, I wouldn't have the anger issues in the first place.

People used to care about sports.  We still don't know why.  It was probably a hangover from cave man days.

If I could travel in time, you wouldn't be reading this.

GLaDOS is my spirit critter, but Mayhem is my moral anchor.

Getting old is bullshit.  Die when you're still pretty and don't ache so much.

Where 3 people meet in Eris's name, there is an argument and 20 years of acrimony.

Apple Talk / UNLIMITED 2021 FREAD
« on: April 01, 2021, 05:24:02 pm »
I liked 2021 better when the boat was stuck.

I mean, yeah, it dinged 10% of world trade and meant that ships had to sail all the way around Africa, where they died of scurvy and pirates...BUT it was in itself a monument to GREATNESS.  It was a stunning display of incompetence that only comes along once or twice in any given lifetime.  It was the "I SHOT MARVIN IN THE FACE" of the nautical world.  And perfection is perfection, even when you're talking about incompetence.

It was, as a friend put it, the polar opposite of the Apollo program. 

And it wasn't just incompetence on the part of the ship's captain.  At some point, everyone decided that there should be two canals North of Bitter Lake (the midpoint) but just one to the South.  So they did 150% of the work required for a single failure point, and still got the failure point.  Add to that all the people who tried to dig it out with a backhoe.

Then some schmuck comes along and says "Wait for high tide" and they float the damned thing.

I would consider it a personal favor if they went back and got stuck again.

RPG Ghetto / New campaign world notes
« on: March 29, 2021, 04:27:39 pm »
Timeline (this will be repeatedly edited)
IC = Imperial Calendar

0 IC: King Stake unites the petty kingdoms to create the Empire.  He styles himself "Emperor Stake I".
5 IC: The empire moves to pacify the barbarian tribes at the North end of the landmass (Cortland).
10 IC:  Barbarians resist being pacified, due to the popular (and powerful) druids and shamans leading them.
15 IC:  First rumors of The Six, monstrous evils that the Emperor made bargains with in an effort to finish the barbarians off.
22 IC:  Emperor Stake I dies after overindulging at a feast with his knights.  His son is crowned Emperor Pitt I, who severs contact with The Six, and everyone who dealt with them disappears.  The wars against the barbarians creak to a halt.
35 IC:  Emperor Pitt's bureaucracy is finished being assembled.  It is very efficient and leads to public content, as taxes are collected directly from the Imperial government, rather than being levied by local lords via "tax farmers".  Emperor Pitt gains a name as a builder, trying to outdo the ancients in terms of grandeur.  He succeeds to some degree.  The guilds and great merchant houses are established by this point.
71 IC:  The aged Emperor Pitt abdicates in favor of his son, who styles himself Emperor Burke.  The night of the abdication, Pitt vanishes, never to be seen again.  Emperor Burke continues his father's work, though by this point the bureaucracy has learned that it has the power to bind and loose, and begins to make and carry out plans of its own.
79 IC:  A full third of the bureaucracy vanishes in a single night, including most of the new power brokers.  Rumors are that the vanished bureaucrats were dragged into the cellars of the government building by barbarians in Imperial attire, led by the Emperor's First Knight. (The government building is built on the foundation of one of the ancient's structures.)  The empire reinvigorates to some degree. 
100 IC:  Emperor Burke falls in battle with the Northern tribes in what would otherwise be a minor skirmish.  His daughter is crowned Empress Fugue, and immediately begins a punitive war against the barbarians, regardless of clan or tribe affiliation.  Empress Fugue is not the builder her forefathers were, nor does she indulge in parties, etc.  She is driven by a need for revenge.
102 IC:  The barbarians are conquered, many enslaved.  Empress Fugue gives grants of land in the barbarian territory to reward her generals and legions.
115 IC:  Empress Fugue and almost her entire court disappear overnight, after returning to the capitol.  Within weeks (hours in some cases), rival claimants to the throne begin fighting.  Within months, the empire is torn back into its constituent kingdoms.  Most landholders in the barbarian lands are slain by resurgent barbarians (though some hold on and forge petty kingdoms, either by raw force or by making common cause with some of the barbarian clans.  The disappearance of the Empress and her court is never explained.  Late in the year, the capitol is abandoned, after multiple mass disappearances.
155 IC:  The present day.  The remains of the empire have decayed into petty kingdoms and robber barons.  The former capitol is overgrown and shunned by the peasantry.  Bandits, barbarians, and monsters roam the lands, preying on any travelers and weak communities.  Occasional mass disappearances of small communities occur at irregular intervals.

Apple Talk / 24 hour ban on FB for
« on: March 24, 2021, 11:25:01 pm »
...For saying that Hungary has its own language.


Apple Talk / Rush Limbaugh Jokes
« on: February 23, 2021, 04:42:42 pm »
What's the difference between Rush Limbaugh and the Hindenburg?

One was a flaming Nazi gasbag that ended badly, and the other was an airship.

Apple Talk / Boy, I'm Glad THAT'S Over (Hey Louie)
« on: February 23, 2021, 03:54:25 pm »

I hear you talking.  2020 is finally over and now we can get back to normal.  I hear you saying this and I shake my head at your stupidity.  You thought all of this *gestures vaguely* was a bounded event?  That somehow, magically, things would go right now that the year of horror is past us?

We didn't get a WEEK into 2021 without an insurrection (January).

We didn't get two months in with a super storm tearing up Texas (February), when Texas found out that what they'd been voting for was to remain separated from the other 47 contiguous states' grids.  So nobody can help them.  Now they have no clean water and ALSO found out that their bills from Gridly are priced by the minute and weighed by demand, so suddenly people are getting $10,000+ electricity bills.  And THEN Rick Perry gets on the TV and says Texans would PREFER this sort of 3rd world lifestyle, if that's what it takes to keep the mean old federal gubmint out of their business.  Score one more for the "rugged individualists," I suppose.

What will March bring?  Yes, we're still setting our calendars for catastrophe, because 2020 wasn't just a bad year, it was the year in which our mistakes began to catch up with us.  And it's not like our mistakes were an occasional thing. 

So don't think of 2020 as a bad stretch of highway.  Think of it as an on ramp.

Yours truly,

Apple Talk / Old Timey History Lessons with Dok.
« on: February 15, 2021, 03:57:15 pm »
#1:  Operation Plumbbob.

Once upon a time, kiddies, a man named Dr Robert Brownlee, from Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, was asked to examine whether nuclear detonations could be conducted underground. I guess it was believed that this would be less polluting, though by then we knew our nukes worked and we were mostly doing it because it made a loud noise.

So in Operation Plumbbob, the bombs were placed in deep boreholes, and a 2000 pound steel manhole cover was placed at the top of the shaft.

The first test, the manhole cover just flat-up disappeared.  The second test, they ran the highest speed camera they could, and they got the steel cover moving in one (1) frame.  They were able to calculate the speed of the manhole cover from that, which came out to 69.5 miles per second.

That's higher than the static escape velocity of the Earth (7 MPS) and in fact of the solar system with a starting point of Earth's orbit. 

This test was conducted 29 times.

So we flung 1 ton manhole covers at random into interstellar space as often as we could.  Which I approve of.  It will give aliens a much clearer view of us than Voyager 1 did.  Specifically, it will tell them to stay the fuck away from us.  We don't want to be friends.  Fuck off. Go home.

Aneristic Illusions / UNLIMITED Biden thread (for good or for ill)
« on: January 22, 2021, 08:14:17 pm »
I'll start:

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden has directed his intelligence community to study the threat of domestic extremism in the United States, an undertaking being launched weeks after a violent mob loyal to Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol.

The disclosure Friday by White House press secretary Jen Psaki is a stark acknowledgment of the national security threat that officials see as posed by American extremists motivated to violence by extremist ideology. The involvement of the director of national intelligence, an office created after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks to prevent international terrorism, suggests that American authorities are examining how to pivot to a more concerted focus on violence from radical extremists at home.

More at link.

Aneristic Illusions / So, how's that Brexit thing coming along?
« on: January 22, 2021, 12:49:47 am »
We're not hearing much over here, mostly on account of the news is preoccupied with the presidential thing.

Apple Talk / The Day Before The Day (Hey, Louie)
« on: January 19, 2021, 06:32:00 pm »

Well, by my watch, it is 22 hours and 43 minutes until the inauguration.  This makes me feel good, because Trump is leaving, but I am also filled with apprehension because of what the boogs might get up to.  They've already had to removed 2 national guardsmen from the guard for militia ties, and they've arrested over 125 people from the opening act of the insurrection. 

In the meantime, I keep hearing MAGA freaks scorning Biden's promise of "unity".  I'm not happy about that myself.  I don't want to unify with traitors and insurrectionists.  I'd rather just unify with the people that are still SANE and (somewhat) NORMAL.  As for the boogs and the guys walking around in confederate and/or Nazi gear, it would be more proper to reunite them with bricks.   

What really gets me, though, is those on the LEFT that want to "unite," that want "compromise".  We saw the compromise we got when they were in power (Merrick Garland, anyone?) even BEFORE Trump.  Anyone who wants to HEAL and UNITE and COMPROMISE with these freaks is free to do so.  But remember that old German joke about the guy sitting at a table with 5 Nazis.  You get 6 Nazis, as far as the rest of the country is concerned.

These are times that do not call for compromise. 

Or power-sharing, which is - and make no mistake about this - what the right thinks of when they hear anything like "compromise" or "healing" or "unity."

No, this are times that call for scaring the roaches back under the refrigerator.   

Now, I will maintain that we owe these traitors nothing at all, but in the sake of "reaching across the aisle," I saw we give them our GRINS.  And none of this half-hearted stuff, either.  I meant the kind of GRIN that makes their poop want to run away without them, and causes uninvolved people to scoot to the other side of the bus.

They though this was their time.  They were, as always, wrong.

This is OUR time.

Yours in the burning of the whole mess,

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