Speed ​​Dating Washington DC

[Econ] Urban Renewal Megaproject

2020.11.10 18:14 Erhard_Eckmann [Econ] Urban Renewal Megaproject

Urban Renewal Megaproject

An initiative begun by President Rubio and endorsed by the Republican Party, the Urban Renewal Projects designate a shift in focus in American cities from building out, to building up. After the refocusing of the Republican Party policy, a hard look was taken at city policies to help minority groups thrive economically, along with their businesses. It was determined that the best way to uplift minority groups across the United States would be to improve their quality of life and cities. Almost every major city in the United States has been neglected close to the city center almost since its inception, while new infrastructure expands the city limits. A mindset has formed that the wealthy keep moving out to newer infrastructure while the inner city is filled with minorities and public squalor, but that needs to change. If American cities can uplift their interior and overhaul their public image, the quality will improve, their property values will rise, and their wealth will grow as businesses thrive. The Republican Party is looking at making such economic growth possible, and has created the Urban Renewal Projects to give grants to municipalities to overhaul their jurisdiction by using Federal funding. President Rubio has set his priorities on Rust Belt Cities, Deep South Cities, Economic Hubs, and Aging Cultural Centers. The following cities have been designated as Urban Renewal targets:
  • Montgomery, Alabama
  • Mobile, Alabama
  • Jackson, Mississippi
  • New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Fayetteville, Arkansas
  • Memphis, Tennessee
  • Nashville, Tennessee
  • Savannah, Georgia
  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • Columbia, South Carolina
  • Charleston, South Carolina
  • Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Norfolk, Virginia
  • Richmond, Virginia
  • Alexandria-Fairfax, Virginia
  • Washington D.C
  • Baltimore, Maryland
  • Louisville, Kentucky
  • Charleston, West Virginia
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • New York City, New York
  • Buffalo, New York
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Detroit, Michigan
  • Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Cleveland, Ohio
  • Columbus, Ohio
  • Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Green Bay, Wisconsin
  • Los Angeles, California
  • Seattle, Washington
  • San Francisco, California

Roadways

One of the most notable and most complained about issues facing urban America is the quality of roads. It goes without saying, Alabama and Mississippi are not famous for their excellent roadways. It is very easy for a road to be build and be completely forgotten about. In some cases, decades have gone by where potholes have not been filled, lines have not been repainted, and storm drains haven't been dug. The United States loves to build something, and completely forget about maintenance; the Projects are a perfect example of this. Roadways that haven't been paved in over 20 years will be slated for reconstructing. These roadways will be slated for storm drain installation to keep the road tops clear. For those large roadways that cut through residential areas, noise walls will be installed where possible. Roadway quality will have to be certified to ensure it meets regulations and safety needs. Traffic cameras will be installed where possible to monitor traffic and enforce traffic laws. Major roads will receive lane additions to hold more traffic, but downtown areas will be given a specific bus/bicycle lane if not present already. This will help keep slow bus traffic and distracting bicycles off to the side. Where possible, traffic lights will be gradually phased down for favor of roundabouts to keep cities moving.

Mass Transit

One area that the US is significantly lacking is in mass transit. Only a handful of cities have subway systems, but all of them could greatly benefit from having them. Firstly, the existing subway systems like the New York City Metro and the DC Metro will need extensive upgrading, they are significantly outdated because their cities have no interest in keeping them up. The existing metros will be upgraded and given an overhaul for cleanliness and aesthetic purposes. New rolling stock will be brought out as well. For the remaining cities, while most have some sort of overground tram, they will be given funding to set up their own subway service. They will actively service the downtown areas and spread out expansively into the suburbs, this will allow for connection from the inner city to the outskirts so that when the urban renewal builds the city up and people begin to move back downtown, there will be total coverage of the area. It will be up to the municipalities what they charge and what they spend on maintenance and upgrading, but the federal government will provide 20% of whatever the expense is to maintain after construction.

Commercial and Residential Development

In the downtown areas, old, rundown, and empty buildings will have the land auctioned off to land developers so that high-rise residential and commercial buildings can be built in their place. Citizens will be asked if they would be willing to relocate and sell their inner-city land to developers so the area can be uplifted. No one will be forced to move, and it will completely be a by choice decision. In areas where the roads are being extended, if it would cut through a building, only in that case will eminent domain be used. All historical structures will be protected and retained in their current place. If there are residents that would prefer to remain in their place, developers will be allowed to bargain with the homeowners for the development to take place. Out of the rubble of the old, skyscrapers will rise up across the downtown areas with large-scale residential buildings to bring life back to the downtown areas. Cities will be recommended to institute a "no additional suburban expansion" policy, so that high-rises will gradually begin populating the city areas, and land can be preserved. American cities will gradually begin to look like the rest of the world, as apartment buildings will replace large suburban projects, mixed-use buildings along the street will house residents on the higher floors, and have commercial space on the lower floors to keep the cities vibrant. Old telephone lines will be removed, and external cabling will be integrated into underground systems to clean up the streets. Internet service cabling will also be upgraded to fiber-optic or the equivalent latest standard so that the utilities in America's urban areas will be the most up-to-date, which will allow for an overall increase of American internet speeds. On the tops of large commercial buildings, companies like Verizon, AT&T, among others will be permitted to install their latest 5G services to keep Americans connected as the height of cities grow.

Waste & Recycling Management

One of the biggest complaints for American cities is the poor waste management system, and how it contributes to a perception of unclean cities. Take New York for example, it is notorious for being an unclean city, but there is no reason it has to be that way. Cities should prioritize keeping up a clean image, and the federal government is willing to provide funding and services to keep it that way. Cities have been recommended to create volunteer public service programs for students or seniors to help clean their city, whether it be cleaning graffiti, picking up trash, or crosswalk assistance prior to school hours, there are plenty of opportunities that can be made available for those who want to make a difference in their cities. Recycling services should become customary in every city that doesn't have it already. Bulk trash pick-up days should happen once a month, even in cities, and trash routines should take place at minimum twice a week. While trash trucks are excellent for handling the cans and large dumpsters, oftentimes bags are left at the street level out of pure laziness. Shortly after trucks make their rounds, a smaller pickup with a small crew should roll through and collect any remaining trash and debris to help eliminate the perception of dirty American cities. Public trashcans should be made abundant, and as frequently emptied as the trash service takes place. Restaurants, grocery stores, and food-service businesses will also have a food-waste bin, which will be specifically for these types of businesses that will rotate as a trash service. The waste will be taken to natural composts which can be processed into fertilizer and bought back for local farmers, which is an innovative way for municipal governments to make money. Recycling can also be cleaned, and then sold back to manufacturing companies looking for raw materials like plastic, metals, aluminum, and glass. Sure, it will cost a little bit of money to keep America's cities clean, but the investor appeal and public enjoyment of the cities is priceless. It could be maneuvers like this that revitalize old cultural cities like Montgomery.

Cleaning Waterways

The various harbors, ports, bays, lakes, and rivers of America's cities are often one of the primary appeals for the location and tourism in the first place. The residents of the DC area would love a cleaner Potomac, as would those of LA and the bay. While America has been very keen to allow industrial ports and companies to thrive, it has often been at the expense of the residents of the city. There is no reason why these municipalities cannot have both good environment and economical success. For ports and lakes, city governments will subsidize submersible drones to help clean the undercarriages of freighters and outgoing vessels, to prevent trash sticking to them or bio run-off from other areas of the globe. Port authorities will be connected with businesses like 4Ocean to help turn old retired vessels into skimmers for lakes, oceans, rivers, and bay areas to pick up remnants of storm damage and other trash. For more narrow areas, the 4Ocean patrol vessels can be purchased to help clean the waterways. The federal government will provide subsidies to help make these options affordable to the cities, which will allow them to focus on cleaning up their near waterways. Lakes, and rivers near cities are typically used for tourism, fishing, and sometimes drinking water. The EPA has been tasked with being more proactive about testing these waters to make sure they are safe for drinking, and recreational activities. If pollutants and chemicals are detected that should not be present, they will notify the local authorities to put out a notice and will begin an investigation that could end up in a lawsuit, or evicting the person or organization responsible.
submitted by Erhard_Eckmann to Geosim [link] [comments]


2020.11.06 23:51 BGRC1984 Oil Tank Replacement vs. Heat Pump

Hey Everyone, I'm hoping I can rely on your experience for some advice as a new homeowner...
Two months ago, my wife and I purchased a home that was built in the early 1970's. The house has has an older, but still functional, oil heating system. The oil furnace and tank are both old, though I'm not sure exactly how old (furnace has maintenance records attached to it that date to the early 1990s) the tank and furnace are. The furnace is still functioning despite it's age, and I've had several professionals tell me that it could last for a long time still with just regular maintenance and replacement parts.
The oil tank on the other hand has a large dent in it's side, but is not leaking anything. There are signs of rust and corrosion on the exterior of the tank and the line running to the furnace. I don't know how old the tank is, but I'd say it's safe to assume it's at least 30 years old, if not older. We recently had a guy from our local oil company out there who was adamant that the tank needed to be replaced because of the dent, and that the cost for the new tank + install would be ~$3000. We live in Maryland outside of Washington, DC for reference.
I mentioned to the oil guy that at that price it might make more sense to just do a switchover to a heat pump or propane system (no gas lines near our house unfortunately). He pushed back pretty hard on that, saying that oil is safer, the price isn't any difference, and that his company could keep my furnace running indefinitely. This is all while he's telling me he needs to put in a new part to modulate the fan speed correctly ($200) which will take him 2-3 hours to do at a rate of ~$80/hour.
I recognize that he's biased, and everything he said was likely a sales pitch, but I was hoping for some unbiased advice. We aren't opposed to spending more upfront now to upgrade to a different system, but don't want to do so unnecessarily. I would prefer not to spend another $3k to lock ourselves into a heating solution that is inefficient and will cost us more in the long run.
Has anyone been in a similar situation? Do any experts or heating industry folks have an unbiased opinion they could share? I'd love to hear the opinion of an expert that isn't motivated by my wallet.
submitted by BGRC1984 to HomeImprovement [link] [comments]


2020.10.16 18:08 Rsubs33 [Game Preview] Week 6 - Philadelphia Eagles(1-3-1) vs Baltimore Ravens (4-1)

Philadelphia Eagles (1-3-1) vs Baltimore Ravens (4-1)
The Eagles dug themselves deeper into a hole and lost their title as Kings of Shit Mountain with their disappointing loss to the Steelers last Sunday. Rookie WR Chase Claypool made the Eagles defense look silly over and over on his way to 4 TDs, including a 35 TD reception with under 3 minutes to go to seal the game. Jim Schwartz thought that he is smarter than everyone else and believed it was a good idea to put his failing LB Nate Gerry on Claypool despite the fact Claypool had already scored 3 TDs on the day and Gerry has given up 23 receptions on 23 targets for 267 yards 4 TDs and a 154.6 passer rating. Schwartz will most definitely trott Gerry out there this week against the Baltimore Ravens who will have reigning MVP QB Lamar Jackson out there who can pick apart defenses with his arm and his legs. Schwartz will have to gameplan better than he has in previous weeks to keep Jackson contained and ensure talented Baltimore TEs Mark Andrews and Nick Boyle have someone covering them who isn’t named Nate Gerry. The Eagles have the talent on the defensive line to keep Jackson in the pocket and force him to beat them with his arm where the Eagles will get a boost in the secondary with the return of Will Parks who will make his first start for the Eagles after signing in the offseason. That said, the talent hasn’t been missing on the defense outside of the LB position, instead the gameplans have been nonexistent from Jim Schwartz who consistently decides his scheme is the most important piece and he can just run it regardless of what the offense runs. If that mindset continues expect another L for the Eagles and another big fantasy day for Lamar Jackson. On the other side of the ball the Eagles actually look like they are beginning to click. The offensive line held the Steelers top rated pass defense in check for the better part of the day and a weapon has emerged from the depths of the practice squad. In the past two games, Carson Wentz has a perfect passing rating when targeting Travis Fulgham who has consistently been able to find openings in the defense and make big catches for the QB. Wentz may get Jackson and Jeffrey back this Sunday as well which would give him some more confidence that guys can get open and make catches, both are currently listed as questionable, so we will see. This game most likely ends up as another L for the Eagles, but if they want any chance to win they are going to need their QB to make some big plays and they are going to need their defense to slow down the Ravens high powered offense. Go Eagles!
General Information
Posting Rules and Guidelines
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Score Prediction Contest
Date
Sunday, October 18th, 2020
Game Time Game Location
1:00 PM - Eastern Lincoln Financial Field
12:00 PM - Central 1020 Pattison Ave
11:00 AM - Mountain Philadelphia, PA 19148
10L00 AM - Pacific Wikipedia - Map
Weather Forecast
Stadium Type: Open Air
Surface: Grass
Temperature: 61°F
Feels Like: 61°F
Forecast: Clear. Partly cloudy throughout the day.
Chance of Precipitation: 0%
Cloud Coverage: 10%
Wind: South-Southeast 6 MPH
Betting Odds
Oddsshark Information
Favorite/Opening Line: Ravens -7.5
OveUnder: 46.5
Record VS. Spread: Philadelphia 1-4, Baltimore 3-1-1
Where to Watch on TV
CBS will broadcast Sunday’s game to a regional audience. Ian Eagle will handle the play-by-play duties and Charles Davis will provide analysis and Evan Washburn will report from the sidelines.
TV Map - Week 6 TV Coverage Map
Radio Streams
List of Eagles Radio network member stations with internet broadcast availability
Radio.com 94.1 Desktop Streaming
Listen to Merrill Reese and Mike Quick
Calling the game on 94WIP and the Eagles Radio Network will be Merrill Reese, the NFL’s longest-tenured play-by-play announcer (44th season). Joining Reese in the radio booth will be former Eagles All-Pro wide receiver Mike Quick, while Howard Eskin will report from the sidelines.
Location Station Frequency
Philadelphia, PA WIP-FM 94.1 FM and 610 AM
Allentown, PA WCTO-FM 96.1 FM
Atlantic City/South Jersey WENJ-FM 97.3 FM
Levittown, PA WBCB-AM 1490 AM
Northumberland, PA WEGH-FM 107.3 FM
Pottsville, PA WPPA-AM 1360 AM
Reading, PA WEEU-AM 830 AM
Salisbury/Ocean City, MD WAFL-FM 97.7 FM
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, PA WEJL-FM 96.1 FM
Salisbury/Ocean City, MD WAFL-FM 97.7 FM
Salisbury/Ocean City, MD WEJL-AM 630 AM
Salisbury/Ocean City, MD WBAX-AM 1240 AM
Williamsport, PA WBZD-FM 93.3 FM
Wilmington, DE WDEL-FM/AM 101.7 FM
York/LancasteHarrisburg, PA WSOX-FM 96.1 FM
Philadelphia Spanish Radio
Rickie Ricardo and Bill Kulik will handle the broadcast in Spanish on Mega 105.7 FM in Philadelphia and the Eagles Spanish Radio Network.
Location Station Frequency
Philadelphia, PA LA MEGA 105.7 FM
Allentown, PA WSAN 1470 AM
Atlantic City, NJ WIBG 1020 AM; 101.3 FM
Ravens Radio
Ravens Radio Gerry Sanduskey will return for his 14th season to handle play-by-play duties for the broadcast. Former Ravens Former Ravens players Dennis Pitta and Obafemi "Femi" Ayanbadejo will provide color and analysis during the game.
National Radio
Sports USA will broadcast the game nationally with Josh Appel handling the play by play and Brandon Noble will provide analysis.
Satellite Radio
Station Eagles Channel RavensChannel
Sirius Radio SIRI 133 (Streaming 825) SIRI 82 (Streaming 802)
XM Radio XM 227(Streaming 825) XM 383 (Streaming 802)
Sirius XM Radio SXM 227 (Streaming 825) SXM 383 (Streaming 802)
Eagles Social Media Ravens Social Media
Website Website
Facebook Facebook
Twitter Twitter
Instagram Instagram
Snapchat: Eagles Snapchat: bltravens
NFC East Standings
NFC EAST Record PCT Home Road Div Conf PF PA Net Pts Streak
Cowboys 2-3 .400 2-1 0-2 1-0 2-2 163 180 -17 1W
Eagles 1-3-1 .300 0-1-1 1-2 0-1 1-2 113 145 -32 1L
Football Team 1-4 .200 1-2 0-2 1-0 1-2 89 142 -53 4L
Giants 0-5 .000 0-2 0-3 0-1 0-4 81 133 -52 5L
Series Information
The Philadelphia Eagles vs Baltimore Ravens. Series tied 2-2-1
Series History
Head to Head Box Scores
First Game Played
November 16th, 1997 at Memorial Stadium, Baltimore, MD . Philadelphia Eagles 10 - Baltimore Ravens 10
Points Leader
Ravens lead Eagles (106-82)
Coaches Record
Doug Pederson: 0-1 against the Ravens
John Harbaugh: 1-2 against Eagles
Coaches Head to Head
Doug Pederson vs John Harbaugh: Harbaugh leads 1-0
Quarterback Record
Carson Wentz: Against Ravens: 0-1
Lamar Jackson: Against Eagles: 0-0
Quarterbacks Head to Head
Carson Wentz v Lamar Jackson: First Meeting of QBs
Records per Stadium
Record @ Lincoln Financial Field: Eagles lead Ravens: 2-0
Record @ M&T Bank Stadium: Ravens lead Eagles 2-0
Rankings and Last Meeting Information
AP Pro 32 Ranking
Eagles No. 20 - Steelers No. 6
Record
Eagles: 1-3-1
Ravens: 4-1
Last Meeting And Last Meeting at Site
Sunday, December 18th, 2016
Ravens 27 - Eagles 26
Baltimore (8-6) had a 27-17 lead and a first down at the Philadelphia 11 when Joe Flacco threw an interception to give the Eagles (5-9) another chance. Rookie Carson Wentz directed a drive that produced a field goal with 2:22 remaining. The Eagles got the ball back at their 41 with 1:39 to go. A 24-yard completion to tight end Zach Ertz and a pass interference call against rookie Tavon Young set up a 4-yard touchdown run by Wentz that got Philadelphia within a point. First-year coach Doug Pederson dropped his balls on the table and went for the victory, declining the conversion kick for a 2-point try. "I wanted to win the football game," Pederson said. Wentz threw over the middle to tight Jordan Matthews, who couldn't get his hands on a tipped ball and the Ravens won by a single point 27-26.
Click here to view the Video Recap
Click here to view the Stats Recap
Last 10 Meetings
Date Winner Loser Score
12/18/16 Ravens Eagles 27-26
9/16/12 Eagles Ravens 24-23
11/23/08 Ravens Eagles 36-7
10/31/04 Eagles Ravens 15-10
11/16/97 N/A N/A 10-10
Injury Reports Depth Charts
Eagles Eagles
Ravens Ravens
2020 “Expert” Picks
Week 6 - "Expert" Picks
2020 Team Stats
Eagles Season Stats
Ravens Season Stats
2020 Stats (Starters/Leaders)
Passing
Name CMP ATT PCT YDS TD INT RAT
Wentz 117 195 60.0% 1188 6 9 68.5
Jackson 86 135 63.7% 949 9 2 100.5
Rushing
Name ATT YDS YDS/G AVG TD
Sanders 62 316 79.0 5.1 3
Jackson 41 238 47.6 5.8 1
Receiving
Name REC YDS YDS/G AVG TD
Fulgham 12 207 104.5 17.4 2
Brown 22 319 63.8 14.5 1
Sacks
Name Sacks Team Total
Graham/Sweat 3.0 18
BowseJudon/Elliott/Queen 2.0 16
Tackles
Name Total Solo Assist Sacks
Gerry 40 21 19 0.0
Queen 42 30 12 2.0
Interceptions
Name Ints Team Total
Singleton/McLeod 1 2
Peters 2 3
Punting
Name ATT YDS LONG AVG NET IN 20 TB BP
Johnston 21 1080 62 51.4 45.7 10 2 0
Koch 15 684 53 45.6 44.3 7 1 0
Kicking
Name ATT MADE % LONG PAT
Elliot 9 7 77.8% 54 10/10
Tucker 11 10 90.9 47 17/17
Kick Returns
Name ATT YDS AVG LONG TD
Scott 7 124 17.7 25 0
Dunernay 7 238 34.0 93 1
Punt Returns
Name RET YDS AVG LONG TD FC
Ward 5 19 3.8 8 0 6
Proche II 10 88 8.8 17 0 6
League Rankings 2020
Offense Rankings
Category Eagles Stat Eagles Rank Ravens Stat Ravens Rank
Total Offense 322.4 28th 339.6 24th
Rush Offense 108.0 18th 160.8 3rd
Pass Offense 214.4 26th 178.8 31st
Points Per Game 22.6 23rd 29.8 T-8th
3rd-Down Offense 48.7% 7th 43.3% 16th
4th-Down Offense 33.3% T-28th 66.7% T-13th
Red Zone Offense (TD%) 66.7% T-12th 62.5% 19th
Defense Rankings
Category Eagles Stat Eagles Rank Ravens Stat Ravens Rank
Total Defense 355.2 13th 335.0 6th
Rush Defense 114.2 17th 92.0 5th
Pass Defense 241.0 17th 243.0 18th
Points Per Game 29.0 23rd 15.2 1st
3rd-Down Defense 44.9% 18th 36.5% 5th
4th-Down Defense 50.0% T-13th 33.3% T-5th
Red Zone Defense (TD%) 73.3% 27th 70.0% 26th
Team
Category Eagles Stat Eagles Rank Ravens Stat Ravens Rank
Turnover Diff. -6 T-30th +5 T-4th
Penalties/Game 6.2 T-20th 5.0 11th
Penalty Yards/Game 50.4 14th 37.4 8th
Recap from Last Week’s Games.
Eagles - The Eagles took on their cross state rival after coming off their first win of the season the week before and the Eagles feel flat on their face making the trip across the state. Jim Schwartz showed up with zero game plan and had no answer to runs by Chase Claypool, despite the fact the Steelers used similar plays earlier this seasons. Claypool owned the Eagles Sunday scoring 4 TDs including one with under 3 minutes left to put the nail in the coffin when Jim Schwartz put one of the worst coverages LBs in the league Nate Gerry on Claypool 1v1 with no help. The offense played their best game of the year this season with a break out game by Travis Fulgham, but Jim Schwartz and the defense never gave them a shot.
Ravens - The Ravens took on their division rival Bengals in Week 5. The Baltimore Ravens defense arguably put up the best performance by any team in the NFL this season, allowing just a field goal to an overmatched Cincinnati Bengals team in a 27-3 victory Sunday. Baltimore shut down Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati offense, holding the Bengals to just 205 yards on the afternoon while forcing three turnovers and completely dominating the line of scrimmage in the win. The Ravens would have had a shutout if not for a late field goal by the Bengals that was purely done to break the shutout.
Connections
Baltimore Head Coach John Harbaugh coached 10 years years for the Eagles as their Special Teams Coordinator and DB coach from 1998-2007.
Baltimore Assistant head coach/pass coordinatowide receivers Dan Culley spent 13 years with the Eagles as their WR coach and Senior Offensive assistant 1999-2012. Culley and Doug Pederson coached together from 2009-2015 as part of Andy Reid’s staff with the Eagles and Chiefs.
Baltimore QB Coach James Urban coached 7 years with the Eagles from 2004-2010 as an assistant to the head coach, offensive assistant/quality control coach and QB coach.
Baltimore LB LJ Fort played part of last season for the Eagles before he was cut, so that Jim Schwartz’s love child Nate Gerry could get more playing time.
Eagles VP of Player Personnel Andy Weidl worked for the Ravens as a scout from 2005-16.
Eagles Player Personnel Executive TJ McCreight worked for the Ravens as a scout from 1997-2004.
Eagles assistant director of player personnel Ian Cunningham worked for the Ravens for 9 years as a scout from 1998-2007.
2020 Pro Bowlers
Eagles Ravens
DT Fletcher Cox (Starter) QB Lamar Jackson (Starter)
OG Brandon Brooks (Starter) K Justin Tucker (Starter)
C Jason Kelce (Starter) RB Mark Ingram
LS Rick Lovato (Starter) FB Patrick Ricard (Starter)
TE Zach Ertz TE Mark Andrews
SS Malcom Jenkings (1st Alt) LT Ronnie Stanley(Starter)
OT Lane Johnson (1st Alt G Marshal Yanda (Starter)
OT Orlando Brown Jr.
OLB Matthew Judon
CB Marlon Humphrey
CB Marcus Peters
FS Earl Thomas
LS Morgan Cox (Starter)
General
Referee: Shawn Smith
Philadelphia has produced a 2-2-1 record in the all-time series vs. Baltimore, including a 2-0 mark at home. The Ravens are one of nine NFL teams that the Eagles have never lost to at Lincoln Financial Field (since the 2003 season).
Philadelphia ranks 3rd in the NFL with 18.0 sacks, trailing only L.A. Rams (20.0) and Pittsburgh (20.0). Brandon Graham (54.0) – tied for the team lead with 3.0 sacks – is 1.0 sack shy of surpassing Hugh Douglas (54.5, 1998-2002, ‘04) for the 4th-most sacks in Eagles history, behind Reggie White (124.0, 1985-92), Trent Cole (85.5, 2005-14) and Clyde Simmons (76.0, 1986-93).
Miles Sanders has produced the 3rd-most rushing yards (316) in the NFL since his season debut in Week 2, trailing only Dalvin Cook (439) and Todd Gurley (319) in that category.
Travis Fulgham led the Eagles with 10 receptions for 152 yards and 1 TD in Week 5 at Pittsburgh. Fulgham is one of only three NFL players to register 10+ catches for 150+ yards and 1 TD in a game this season (also Davante Adams and George Kittle).
Draft Picks
Eagles Ravens
WR Jalen Raegor LB Patrick Queen
QB Jalen Hurts RB JK Dobbins
LB Davion Taylor DT Justin Madubuike
S K’Von Wallace WR Devin Duvernay
OT Jack Driscoll LB Malik Harrison
WR John Hightower OT Trye Phillips
LB Shaun Bradley OG Ben Bredeson
WR Quez Watkins DT Broderick Washington
OT Prince Tega Wanogho WR James Proche
LB/DE Casey Toohill S Geno Stone
Notable Off-season Additions
Eagles Ravens
S Will Parks DE Calais Campbell
DT Javon Hargrave LS Nick Moore
CB Nickell Robey-Coleman DE Derek Wolfe
CB Darius Slay ILB Jake Ryan
OT Parker Ehinger
TE Jerell Adams
RB Kenjon Barner
Notable Off-season Departures
Eagles Ravens
S Malcom Jenkins TE Hayen Hurst
CB Ronald Darby OL James Hurst
RB Jordan Howard CB Brandon Carr
WR Nelson Agholor OL B.J. Finney
OL Halapoulivaati Vaitai WR Seth Roberts
LB Kamu Grugler-Hill DT Michael Pierce
RB Darren Sproles DE Chris Wormley
DT Timmy Jernigan ILB Josh Bynes
LB Nigel Bradham ILB Patrick Onwuasor
S Earl Thomas
Milestones
Eagles QB Carson Wentz (15379) needs 294 yards to move up to 4th on the Eagles all-time passing yards list moving ahead of QB Norm Snead.
Eagles QB Carson Wentz (907) needs 93 yards for 1000 career rushing yards.
Eagles WR Desean Jackson (6397) needs 68 yards to move up to 3rd on the Eagles all-time receiving yards list all-time passing WR *Mike Quick
Eagles WR Desean Jackson (34) needs 2 TDs to move into a tie for 7th on the Eagles all-time receiving TD list tying WR Jeremy Maclin
Eagles DE Brandon Graham (54) needs 1 sack to move to 4th on the Eagles all-time sack list passing DE Hugh Douglas
Eagles DT Fletcher Cox (49.5) needs 1 sack to move up to 6th on the Eagles all-time sack list tying DE Greg Brown
Eagles DE Vinny Curry (27.5) needs 2 sacks to move up to 18th on the Eagles all-time sack list tying DT Jerome Brown
Eagles TE Zach Ertz needs 112 receiving yards for 6000 career receiving yards.
Ravens RB Mark Ingram (1223) needs 27 yards to move up to 12th on the Ravens all-time rushing lists passing RB Javorius Allen and 112 yards to move up to 11th on the list passing RB Bernard Pierce
Stats to Know
Deep Passing
The body types are totally different, but WR Hollywood Brown poses a major deep threat to the Eagles defense, just as WR Chase Claypool did last week No WR in the league has more deep targets (beyond 20 yards) than Brown does, at 15, also catching 4 of 4 catchable deep balls. The next closes for the Eagles is Desean Jackson with 6 targets and 2 catches on 2 catchable deep balls.We don’t know if Desean will be a go for this game, but tell me which Eagle(s) you want defending Brown’s speed on deep balls or on end-arounds. Slay’s out and Mills is not fast. Looking at the QBs slinging these deep balls, Lamar Jackson is 7th in deep ball %, at 16.3% yet 24th in Adjusted Completion % (focusing the stat on QB agency). Wentz is slightly better in that statistic, good for 19th at 40%.
Matchups to Watch
Ravens Multifaceted Offense vs.Eagles Predictable Defense
The Ravens have a diverse offensive attack led by the reigning NFL MVP and a creative Offensive Coordinator that is more than capable of shredding the vanilla Eagles defense. Thus far in 2020, Schwartz has shown little in the way of molding his defense to help cater to the personnel he has in place that has also regressed in his tenure. I’ve said repeatedly throughout this season, as well as in the run up to this season, that the Eagles defense took several steps back in personnel and overall talent to where their strengths really can’t hide the deficiencies in the back end. Other than Darius Slay, the only member of the back seven who can cover, the Eagles struggle to match against opposing offenses in man and zone coverage. They have several hybrid players who theoretically are jacks of all trades and masters of none; in a cruel twist of fate, that was entirely predictable, the Eagles defense has players that struggle with any kind of basic trait that helps a modern defense leaving them as effectively jacks of no trade. Lamar Jackson will execute a diverse rushing attack with 3 capable RBs and his own athleticism that presents a unique challenge for every NFL defense to defend. The Ravens also have a quality offensive line to aid him in targeting a very good Tight End in Mark Andrews and other capable receivers. This offense uses motions and other misdirection plays, as well as play action, at near league leading rates. This is a problem for the Eagles defense as not only are they not talented enough to stop it, they struggle in alignment and execute against motion, misdirection, and play action. Their linebackers are unable to process coverage assignments and frequently blow assignments leading to big plays. Their corners, outside of Slay, struggle to cover at all. It’s a bad recipe for an overmatched defense. Schwartz will need to get this group to play at the level they did two weeks ago in San Francisco in an effort to slow down the Ravens offense. This is one of the best teams in the NFL. The Eagles offense can’t be counted on to continue to match its opponents in a shootout given their personnel limitations on that side of the ball. And when they do find success, the defense struggles to play complimentary football - just like last week. This unit needs to show up or this will likely be a blowout.
Eagles Receiving Weapons vs. Ravens Secondary
Even without Earl Thomas, the Ravens still field one of the best secondaries in the NFL and are capable of executing a number of coverage assignments. They possess two outstanding corners, Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters, who are able to match up with whatever scrubs the Eagles pull off the street this week. Travis Fulgham is fresh off a career day and looks like the first viable receiver the Eagles have had in some time but you have to figure at some point his sudden meteoric rise will normalize soon. That normalization could likely be this week against a formidable secondary. Regardless of when that comes, Fulgham has acquitted himself nicely in the offense and should be a full time starting forward. Absent the return of Desean Jackson or the season debut of Alshon Jeffery, this is a receiver group that is still mightily undermanned due to injury and a lackluster front office. Philly could stand to see a reemergence of Zach Ertz from the struggle bus and produce more than the very little he’s contributed this season so far. Lastly, the Eagles need Carson Wentz to pick up where he left off after a strong performance against the Steelers. PFF graded Wentz as a top 5 QB last week and it was easily his most complete performance of the season which is a notable brightspot in an otherwise disappointing start to the season. This Ravens defense is no joke and is very opportunistic as they force a lot of turnovers. Wentz’s margin for error is already very small given the situation around him but this game requires him to better manage the game on each play to give the offense a shot.
Eagles Decimated Offensive Line vs Ravens Attacking Defensive Front
The Eagles Offensive Line is a surprisingly decent group despite the ridiculous amount of injuries they continue to take on so far this season. The only projected starter left on the offensive line is center Jason Kelce. Lane Johnson is questionable heading into Sunday’s contest and hasn’t practiced this week. He likely won’t go as he’s been dealing with an ankle injury that’s plagued him since training camp. Even if he does return, Johnson is likely to continue to be plagued with the injury bug as long as he isn’t on injured reserve. Jeff Stoutland deserves all the praise in the world for coaching up the current cast of characters on the OL as they haven’t played as horribly as you might imagine against stiff competition. The Steelers defensive front is one of the best in football and the Eagles OL did more than enough to help put them in a position to win last week. They face another difficult test Sunday as they face a complete Ravens front with a DC in Wink Martindale that loves to blitz more than any DC in the NFL. Matthew Judon, Pernell McPhee, Tyus Bowser, and Calais Campbell are a strong unit; Martindale isn’t afraid to bring anyone on a blitz. This offensive line needs to continue to communicate well to handle the onslaught of pressure they are about to face on Sunday. They don’t have the depth of talent to be expected to win consistently; if they play like they did last week, that could be good enough. It’s a very tall order though.
Special thanks to MikeTysonChicken and abenyishay for their help in creating this Game Preview.
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2020.10.13 22:46 cincbus Introducing: The Spanish Royal Family

Royal Family Twitter: u/CasaReal
King Alfonso III (1886-1941)
Gonna go back one more generation than usual to start this wild ride.
Alfonso the III's father, Alfonso XII, died while his mother was pregnant with him, thus he was King upon his birth in 1886. She served as regent until his 16th birthday when he assumed full authority as King. After a series of poor choices, he aligned his fortunes to the dictatorship of Primo de Rivera, who fell from power in 1930. Municipal elections in 1931 resulted in a landslide victory for the Republican and Socialist parties, and they demanded the King abdicate the throne. The King went into exile but refused to abdicate.
While exiled, his eldest son, Alfonso, renounced his right to the throne to marry a commoner.
His second son, Jaime, renounced his rights to the throne because he was deaf.
This left his third son, Juan, as heir apparent. In 1947, General Francisco Franco declared Spain a monarchy yet again, calling it a “restoration”. However, he did not trust Juan as heir. As a result, in 1969, his son, Juan Carlos, was selected as King.
King Juan Carlos I (b. 1938) (abdicated)
Juan Carlos is the grandson of Alfonso XIII, the last king of Spain before the monarchy was abolished in 1931. He was born in exile in Rome, however was allowed back to Spain in 1948 to be further educated there. He joined the army, completing his officer training from 1955-1957. Afterwards, he spent time in both the naval school and the air force school, and later studied law, international political economy and public finance at the University of Madrid.
He was selected to be King of Spain over his father, Juan, by General Franco.
So, why did Franco bring back the monarchy? I found this answer online:
“We’re accustomed to believing a tyrant like Franco could do anything he wanted. Yet, in reality, his options were very limited, amounting to:
a) Do nothing OR appoint another military strongman to take his place.
b) Restore the republic.
c) Restore the monarchy.
There really are no further choices. Regarding (a), Franco was well aware that dictatorships are little more than the cult surrounding the person of the dictator, who is unable to transfer the cult to any 3rd party. So, a dead dictator equates to a dead dictatorhip, perhaps not immediately but before very long the ‘Franco Regime Without Franco’ was bound to implode. Franco accepted this to be an awkward truth, but he swallowed the bitter pill nonetheless.
Option (b) was never in the cards — Franco detested the Republic he fought to unseat and never even considered bring one back to govern Spain post-mortem.
That only leaves option (c). For Franco, the issue was not Monarchy Vs. Republic but rather (i) what sort of monarchy, and (ii.) incarnated by whom? The choices might seem straight-forward, but reality was rather complex since the legitimate heir to the throne (Juan de Bourbon, Count of Barcelona) was a man with whom Franco agreed on practically nothing. The Count of Barcelona made his political philosophies publicly know in the so-called Laussane Manifesto (Mar, 1945), the contents of which were diametrically opposed to the Franco Regime on practically all matters of importance.
Hence, in ’47 Franco did the only thing he regarded as workable — restoring the monarchy in theory but leaving the throne vacant, pending an eventual nomination to fill the seat. The temporary vacancy last 22 years when the Count’s son (Juan Carlos I) was officially designated as heir to the dual roles of head-of-state & commander-in-chief of the armed forces.”
Furthermore, Franco disliked Juan (father of Juan Carlos), whom he suspected of being an Anglophile (Franco despised the British and referred to Great Britain as “perfidious Albion”); he was also determined to be the sole arbiter of Spain’s destiny. And so he was. For the next thirty-six years, Franco remained the country’s unchallenged caudillo, or strongman, and although he declared Spain a monarchy once again, in 1947, he kept the throne empty, leaving Don Juan to languish and fret in neighboring Portugal, even as Franco himself assumed the role of dispenser of noble titles.
In a cruelly Shakespearean twist, Franco asked Don Juan to send him his son, Juan Carlos, who was then ten, to be educated and groomed under Franco’s supervision. In 1969, when Juan Carlos was thirty-one, Franco summoned him and informed the young man of his decision to make him his successor, with the title of King of Spain . (Excerpt from this article)
Juan Carlos met and consulted with Franco many times, standing next to him at ceremonies, publicly supporting his regime, and praising his government. Franco gave full control to Juan Carlos 3 weeks before his death in 1975. Juan Carlo’s position was further legitimized on 1977 when his father formally renounced his claim to the throne.
On paper, Juan Carlos retained fairly extensive reserve powers. He was the guardian of the Constitution and was responsible for ensuring that it was obeyed. In practice, since the passage of the Constitution (and especially since 1982), he took a mostly non-partisan and representative role, acting almost entirely on the advice of the government.
Juan Carlos enjoyed extreme popularity in Spain for many years until multiple scandals (detailed below) were made public about him and his family. As a result, he abdicated the throne on behalf of his son.
Coup D'Etat
Ever since the dictator Francisco Franco had died in 1975, Spain had been changing at the speed of light. Democratic reform was the watchword of the decade, and each reform came one after the other. King Juan Carlos had handed power to parliament and instituted a new constitution. It was all way too fast for Spain's conservatives. According to history.com, it came to a head on February 23, 1981. Lieutenant Colonel Antonio Tejero led 200 members of the civil guard in invading the Cortes, Spain's legislature building. They fired shots in the air and took the parliament hostage.
Spaniards were glued to their television sets for 18 hours as the band of civil guards held the Cortes. King Juan Carlos appealed to the Spanish army to condemn these renegades and affirm their loyalty to the new constitution. The army did and the bandits had to retreat in shame, thus preserving Spain's democracy.
Shooting of Little Brother
In 1956, at age 18, he shot his younger brother Alfonso in the head while the two were playing with a revolver. He has maintained throughout his life that it was an accident, however Alfonso passed away as a result of his injuries.
The financial scandal
Juan Carlos’s daughter, Princess Cristina, is married to Inaki Urdangarin. Urdangarin and his ex-business associate, Diego Torres, were the leading figures in the Nóos Institute, a non-profit that secured no-bid contracts from the regional governments of Valencia and the Balearic Islands using Urdangarin’s influence.Urdangarin and Torres also used their non-profit to divert around €6.2 million from public contracts secured for organizing sports events into private accounts. Urdangarin’s wife, Cristina de Borbón, sat on the board of a company, Aizoon, that was allegedly used to channel part of these funds. She was made to testify in the case, and was ultimately fined for having benefited from her husband’s scheme, but was acquitted of tax fraud complicity.
In June 2018 he was sentenced to 5 years and 10 months in prison; he is currently imprisoned in Ávila.
The hunting trip
In 2012 the King injured himself on an elephant hunting trip in Botswana. At a time when Spainairds were suffering from a lagging economy, this trip was viewed as obscene in terms of expenses and extravagance. Spain’s unemployment was at 23%, and nearly 50% for young workers. To make matters worse, he was the honorary president of the Spanish branch of the World Wildlife Fund.
The public was only made aware of the trip because the King was injured and had to be helicoptered from the scene. Even worse - his mistress was there with him.
Abdication
In 2014 Juan Carlos announced his plans to abdicate the throne in favor of his son, Felipe.
Post-Abdication Scandals
More recently, it emerged that Juan Carlos had accepted a previously undeclared “gift” of a hundred million dollars from Saudi Arabia’s late King Abdullah—allegedly a bribe in return for his help in arranging a lucrative fast-rail-construction contract.
Further roiling the public, one of Juan Carlos’s former lovers, a Danish-born events organizer named Corinna zu Sayn-Wittgenstein—who had accompanied him on his Botswana safari—has acknowledged that Juan Carlos had given her, some years ago, sixty-five million euros (worth about eighty-four million dollars at the time). This “gift” is believed to have come out of the funds given to Juan Carlos by King Abdullah.
The latest bombshell shaking the royal house involves secret audio recordings of princess Corinna zu Sayn-Wittgenstein, a German aristocrat living in Monte Carlo who for years has been romantically linked to the 80-year-old former king and now accuses him of using her name to buy property in Morocco, of accumulating a secret fortune hidden in several Swiss bank accounts under the name of one of his cousins, Alvaro d'Orleans Bourbon, of using fake cut-outs to commit tax fraud and of taking millions in commissions on state contracts.
As a result, the current King Felipe announced he would renounce his personal inheritance from his father and that his father would no longer receive a royal allowance. Afterwards, Juan Carlos vanished.
Exile
In August of this year (2020), Juan Carlos sent a public letter to King Felipe VI, saying that he would be leaving the country due to “the public repercussions that certain past events in [his] private life are generating.” Later reports speculated that he had either gone to Portugal, where his father, Don Juan de Borbón, lived in exile for part of his life, or to the Dominican Republic, which he has visited multiple times. It’s a sign that the figurehead of Spanish democracy understands that he has endangered his legacy—and the monarchy itself.
It has not been published where Juan Carlos is currently living, however photos have been obtained that appear to show Juan Carlos disembarking a plane in Abu Dhabi.
Read more:
https://www.vanityfair.com/style/2020/08/juan-carlos-former-king-why-is-he-in-exile
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-53642283#:~:text=Juan%20Carlos%20abdicated%20in%202014,took%20during%20Spain's%20financial%20crisis.
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-51902673
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-53415781
Marriage:
Juan Carlos married Princess Sofia of Greece and Denmark, daughter of the King of Greece in 1962. In an effort for young, suitable European royals to meet and mingle (and also to boost tourism in Greece), Sophia’s mother arranged a Mediterranean cruise on the Greek yacht Agamemnon in 1954. Several teenaged and twenty-something royals were invited on the trip touring a handful of Greek islands. Juan Carlos and Sofia were among the young royals on the cruise.
They met up at additional weddings and events over the next several years, and were officially reunited in Rome at the 1960 Olympic Games. The Greek royal family held a dinner for the Spanish guests onboard their ship, Polemistis. Following the Olympics, Juan Carlos and his family were invited to spend Christmas 1960 in Greece.
In 1961, Sofia traveled to the UK to attend the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Kent. Juan Carlos was picked to serve as her escort. Following the wedding, Juan Carlos spent the summer of 1961 in Greece and the two announced their engagement in 1961.
Due to Juan Carlos’ uneasy position in Spain, an Athens wedding was planned for May, the beginning of the tourist season in Greece. The celebrations involved 4 ½ months of nearly round-the-clock preparation headed by Colonel Dimitri Levidis, Grand Marshal of the Greek royal court.
Their marriage has never been a happy one and Juan Carlos is known to have had multiple affairs. Though the King is in exile, they remain married, however it is known that they have lived largely separate lives for many years.
Their wedding and more
You can see him giving a speech in English here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e4FJczB_aco
Queen Sofia (b. 1938)
Sofia is the eldest child of King Paul of Greece, and is the daughter, sister, wife, and mother of a King. She was educated at a boarding school in Germany, then studied childcare, music, and archeology in Athens. She was a reserve member of Greece’s gold medal winning sailing team at the 1960 Olympic games.
Sofia is now immensely popular in Spain. She is known to quietly endure the monarchy’s trials, putting her own professional obligations ahead of anything else. This was not, however, always the case. Throughout her reign she has been regarded with skepticism because of her foreign background and mediocre Spanish skills.
In 2008, Queen Sofía shared some of her political ideology during an interview with journalist Pilar Urbano. One of them was her belief that same-sex marriage should not be called marriage. "If those persons want to live together, dress up as bride and groom and get married, they can do so, but that should not be called marriage because it is not," the queen is quoted as saying in Urbano's book.
Her controversial comments about same-sex marriage particularly elicited outrage among liberal groups, and the Royal Palace quickly shared an apology but qualified it by implying she had been misquoted.
Though her husband is in exile, Sofia has remained in Spain and continues to undertake official duties on behalf of her son, the King. She is a vital weapon in Felipe VI’s battle to shore up the popularity of a monarchy hit by scandal and now, suggestions from some politicians that it might have seen better days. Consistently one of the most admired members of the Spanish Royal Family, the enduring affection and respect that Queen Sofía inspires will be needed by her son as he faces a turbulent future for the monarchy.
She speaks Greek, English, German and Spanish.
See her giving a speech in English
King Felipe VI (b. 1968)
Ascended the throne in 2014 upon the abdication of his father. He is head of state and commander-in-chief of the Spanish Armed Forces. He attended high school in Canada and studied at the Autonomous University of Madrid. He completed his academic studies by obtaining a Master of Science in Foreign Service degree from Georgetown, where he was the roommate of his cousin Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece.
From 1985-1993 he spent time completing his military training.
Felipe speaks Spanish, Catalan, French, English, and Greek.
He was a member of the Spanish Olympic sailing team at the Barcelona games in 1992 and was the Spanish team’s flag bearer.
Marriage:
The exact details around how Felipe and Letizia met are unknown, however it is reported that they met at a dinner party in 2003. They dated in secret for more than a year before surprising the public with their engagement in 2003.The two were married in 2004 in Madrid.
Her Gown
More on the wedding, more here
Watch their wedding (it POURED rain)
See Felipe meet Barack Obama (in English)
Author's Note: Google photos of Felipe. You won't be sorry.
Queen Letizia (b. 1972)
Letizia was born in Spain, the daughter of a journalist and registered nurse. She completed a bachelor’s degree in journalism as well as a master’s degree in audiovisual journalism. She worked as the evening anchor of the TVE evening news, the most viewed newscast in Spain. She reported from Washington DC in 2000 on the presidential elections, 2001 from Ground Zero, and 2003 from Iraq.
She was actually married once before Felipe to a writer and high school teacher after dating for almost 10 years. Their marriage lasted one year.
Letizia is far from Spain’s most popular member of the royal family. There was a public spat with her mother-in-law, and it made news when she scolded her fiance for interrupting her during their engagement interview.
She is known for her fashion and beauty. In 2008 she underwent surgery on her nose to “correct a respiratory problem”, however afterwards her nose was notably different.
Author's Note: I feel like I gave a negative impression of Letizia here, but to be honest it's a bit hard to find information about heher personality. I would love someone who is more familiar to fill us all in.
Watch her speak in English here
Felipe and Letizia have two daughters:
Crown Princess Leonor, Princess of Asturias (b. 2005)
Leonor is heir presumptive to the throne of Spain. She does not go by Crown Princess, but rather by Princess of Asturias, the title given to the heirs in Spain (like Prince of Wales in the UK). The Spanish monarchy operates under a system of male-preference cognatic primogeniture, meaning if Felipe were to have a male heir he would replace Leonor in the line of succession. Felipe and Letizia appear to be done having children, however.
In 2018, she was invested by her father with the Order of the Golden Fleece, the most senior order in Spain and the highest award the King can bestow. She is one of only 4 females to be inducted into it.
The other 3 women are Queen Elizabeth, Princess Beatrix, and Queen Margrethe of Denmark (no big deal!!!)
See the proud fathedaughter moment here.
In 2019, at age 14, she gave a speech in both English and Spanish at the Princess of Asturias Awards Ceremony. (such poise!!)
Another speech (her proud parents *I'm crying*!!)
Infanta Sofia (b. 2007)
Sofia is the second daughter of the King and Queen. She is a student in Madrid.
See photos of the family from Spain’s National Day on 10/12. https://twitter.com/CasaReal/status/1315601785382416384?s=20
Infanta Elena, Duchess of Lugo (b. 1963)
Elena is the eldest child of King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia, however because Spain operates under male-preference cognatic primogeniture, her younger brother Felipe is King of Spain.
She married Jamie de Marichalar y Saenz de Tejada in Seville and has two children:
Elena and Jamie divorced in 2009. She undertakes engagements on behalf of her brother, the King.
Infanta Cristina, (stripped of title Duchess of Palma de Mallorca) (b. 1965)
Cristina was born in Madrid, the younger daughter of the King and Queen. She is a sailor and competed in the 1988 summer Olympics. She completed a degree in political science from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, then an MA in international relations from New York University in 1990. She then worked at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris.
She speaks Spanish, Catalan, English, French, and Greek.
Cristina married handball player Inaki Urdangarin in Barcelona in 1997. They have four children:
I talked about this above, but she and her husband were investigated and tried for fraud for their ties to a corruption scandal involving a company they owned. Cristina was acquitted, however her husband is currently serving a prison sentence.
Because of the scandal, her brother officially stripped her of her title in 2015. Her right of succession and the royal title of Infanta were unaffected.
Read more about the scandal here
Jewels
http://www.thecourtjeweller.com/p/spain.htmlhttp://www.thecourtjeweller.com/2017/07/the-top-ten-spanish-royal-tiaras.html
http://www.thecourtjeweller.com/2017/07/the-top-ten-spanish-royal-tiaras.htmlhttps://www.townandcountrymag.com/society/tradition/g28621289/spanish-royal-family-summer-holiday-mallorca-photos-2019/
Vacation
Random note but the Spanish royals vacation in Palma de Mallorca for the summer each year and always produce some of my favorite family photos.
See some here, here, here, or just google them.
A Monarchy in Trouble
Though Felipe and his mother, Queen Sofia, are well-liked, support for the monarchy in Spain has always been thin at best. Coupled with all of the scandals discussed above, Felipe is tasked with saving a monarchy that at times is extremely unpopular with the public. He has had to publicly distance himself from his father, his sister, and other family friends involved in these scandals. This has eroded the appearance of family unity in the monarchy.
From an article:
Despite his attractive family and relative youth, Felipe has struggled to maintain the level of popularity he had heading into his current position. As head of state and commander in chief of the armed forces as well as king, he looks all-powerful on paper, but like many other royals his role is more figurehead than policy-maker. Spain's monarch is looked to for guidance and leadership, though, and he can certainly still be blamed when things go wrong.
Felipe, who in 2015 cut his own salary by almost 20 percent as the country continued to pull itself out of its recession, received a four-minute ovation after delivering his annual address marking the opening of Spain's new legislative session in February, in which he said that the opposing parties that have formed the current coalition government must come together, that "the time has come for words, for arguments and for reasoning, from a position of mutual respect."
To add to his troubles, Catalonia has been trying to split from Spain and gain independence for quite sometime, and Catalonian’s do not want a monarchy. In fact, they recently passed a non-binding motion condemning the monarchy in the wake of Juan Carlos’s departure from Spain. The proposal “Catalonia is a republic and does not want a king” was passed by 69 votes in favor and 65 against. In a recent article out of Catalonia, less than 15% of Catalans prefer having a king to a republic.
As a result, Felipe and Letizia have been pulling out all of the stops to present a united family front and a strong monarchy to the public - they have been undertaking public engagements more often, invited the press into their home, and we’re seeing more and more of their two daughters in an attempt to improve their favorability in Spain.
From 2018 - https://www.forbes.com/sites/ceciliarodriguez/2018/08/12/royal-family-in-trouble-spanish-monarchy-mired-in-new-ugly-scandal/#5b40b53d480a
From 2019 - https://www.forbes.com/sites/ceciliarodriguez/2020/06/09/spanish-monarchy-under-fire/#7910b8d41b26
From 2020 - https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/08/13/is-spanish-spain-juan-carlos-corruption-royal-family-finished/
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2020.10.03 21:00 Alekkkkkk I'm making the big switch! Long time Xbox player looking to build my first PC.

What will you be doing with this PC? Be as specific as possible, and include specific games or programs you will be using.
This will be for playing games with friends. We play a lot of Rainbow Six Siege, PUBG, GTA, and other big games like this. We will also be playing games like Minecraft, Fall Guys, Among Us, and other games like this that are more about having fun rather than being really competitive shooters. A little bit of everything really.
What is your maximum budget before rebates/shipping/taxes?
I'm looking to keep it around $1500. I can be flexible by a few hundred on either side though.
When do you plan on building/buying the PC? Note: beyond a week or two from today means any build you receive will be out of date when you want to buy.
As soon as all parts become available. My idea is to pick up a 3070 when they launch if it fits into my budget overall.
What, exactly, do you need included in the budget? (ToweOS/monitokeyboard/mouse/etc)
I have a monitor and a headset. It is my intention to use these. I guess that I need everything else though, keyboard, mouse, operating system, etc.
Which country (and state/province) will you be purchasing the parts in? If you're in US, do you have access to a Microcenter location?
USA, Washington, DC. I am able to drive to the Fairfax, VA and Rockville, MD locations.
If reusing any parts (including monitor(s)/keyboard/mouse/etc), what parts will you be reusing? Brands and models are appreciated.
Monitor and a headset
Will you be overclocking? If yes, are you interested in overclocking right away, or down the line? CPU and/or GPU?
I don't believe I will be.
Are there any specific features or items you want/need in the build? (ex: SSD, large amount of storage or a RAID setup, CUDA or OpenCL support, etc)
I think that I would like a SSD, right? That's fast? A good amount of storage would be fantastic as well.
What type of network connectivity do you need? (Wired and/or WiFi) If WiFi is needed and you would like to find the fastest match for your wireless router, please list any specifics.
Wifi, I don't want to have to run a cord across my apartment unless it's absolutely necessary. I very rarely run into issues with my internet while playing on my xbox. I am usually well over 100 mbps down. I just ran a speed test while streaming a show and using my laptop and I hit 235 mpbs down.
Do you have any specific case preferences (Size like ITX/microATX/mid-towefull-tower, styles, colors, window or not, LED lighting, etc), or a particular color theme preference for the components?
I would like something rather subtle, a cool matte case would be great. I don't really like a lot of RGB, but some subtle color or lighting effects would be cool.
Do you need a copy of Windows included in the budget? If you do need one included, do you have a preference?
I believe that I do.
Extra info or particulars:
My plan is to try and pick up a 3070 when they launch. And I am happy to wait a month or two until the newest components are released.
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2020.09.26 10:35 7101334 Galactic Hub - Origins Era 🍊

Updates
TL;DR - We're looking for a new capital planet (NOT moving the whole Hub!) and focusing on what we do best - wiki documentation and colony building - as well as trying to get the Star League competitive sports organization properly up and running.
Greetings Interlopers! We've entered what is, in my mind, undoubtedly the most exciting era of No Man's Sky since release - at the same time that we're approaching our 4th anniversary as a civilization!
Now that the Council has had a few days to grapple with the additions and repercussions of the Origins update, I'm prepared to lay out our plan for this glorious new era of interloping. My guiding philosophy for this era is, unlike many other eras, not to focus on innovating as much as mastering the innovations we've already made. This time is less about doing something new, more about doing what we do best, better than ever before.

The Search for a New Capital

SUBMIT CAPITAL CANDIDATES HERE
With the extinction of our iconic mascot diplos, our former capital planet, New Lennon in the [HUB10-6A] system, is no longer adequate to serve as the throneworld of our exceptional community. So, we must begin the search for a new capital!
To be clear, the Galactic Hub civilization is not relocating as a whole, only selecting a new capital planet from within our existing 11 regions. As I explained in more detail in another thread, it's like if America said, "The USA is still going to be in North America, but we're picking a capital besides Washington DC."
The final capital will be chosen following either one or two rounds of voting, and possible Council discretion, depending on how many capital candidates are submitted. And I have no idea how or what we will name it yet.
So what criteria are we looking for in our new capital? I've listed them below, roughly from most-to-least important. No planet will have all of this content, but the more it has, the better. If you can think of any criteria I missed, please let me know in a comment.
  • Diplos, specifically megafauna diplos (6m+, 5m+ might work). Diplos have been a symbol of the Galactic Hub since our earliest capital planet.
  • Greater Mushroom Beetles. It's unlikely that you will find these due to their rarity.
  • Visually appealing biomes: lush worlds, bioluminescent worlds, volcanic worlds with unique coloration, megaflora, or anything else with striking/beautiful visuals
  • Stormless conditions
  • Interesting topography/geography: large mountains, cave systems, underwater caves, unusual rock formations, etc
  • Rare new fauna (I don't want to specify too much further to avoid what some may consider spoilers, but send me a message if you're wondering exactly which new fauna would be considered rare at this stage)
  • Other appealing planets in the same system. evaluated under the same criteria
  • HUB1 (Arm of Vezitinen) or HUB10 (Savenix Instability) preferred
  • Known location of an Archive structure on the planet surface
  • Non-Uncharted system (This is the least important criteria - our capital could definitely be in an Uncharted system, I'd just prefer NPCs if possible)

New Colonies

SUBMIT COLONY CANDIDATES HERE
Colonies, organized settlements of multiple players within a localized area, have become one of the most popular features of the Galactic Hub over the last few update cycles. In the Origins Era, I plan to tap into this trend and have the Council designate official colonies with more frequency than ever before. And you can help us find colony candidates!
Unlike our capital planet, which must meet fairly strict criteria, colony planets can be based anywhere - from the deadly whiteout blizzard conditions of Mount Loper to the relaxing tropical breezes of Axby Delta, we interlopers shall settle across our 11 regions.
Any exceptional candidates submitted for the capital planet which are not selected will also be considered for future colony sites.
See the Colony Candidate Submission Thread (also linked above) for more info.

The Star League

The Galactic Hub Star League, our simulation sports organization, has hosted a handful of events but largely failed to fulfill its promise. That's no one's fault - the organization was my pet project, but I simply didn't have time toi give it the attention it needed, and previous directors were not able to get it off the ground.
I am confident that will change with the newest Director of the Star League, veteran interloper u/Kaboom443 (aka Federal Bureau of Investigation on Discord)!
Keep a close eye on this subreddit and our official Twitter for more opportunities to get involved in competitive Star League events very soon, from multitool PVP to starship dogfights to exocraft races to space-golf.

Wiki Documentation

The Galactic Hub Project, thanks largely to the Galactic Hub Exobiology Corps but also to other chapters and individual interlopers, documented over 900 pages between the Beyond and Desolation eras. That's an incredible wealth of data and knowledge, and everyone who contributed even 1 page to that effort should feel extremely proud of that.
Excellent as that is, we must document more than ever in this era, especially with such variety as we have now. Our wonderful interstellar neighbors at the AGT have even surpassed us in number of planets documented. We cannot have that!
In the Origins Era, I want a renewed focus on documentation by the average interloper. I feel that we have successfully formed dedicated organizations who have contributed massively to the wiki, but also that wiki editing might feel inaccessible to most GH citizens, even those interested in contributing. I will be working to fix that soon with a "Getting Started With Wiki Editing" thread, as well as working with the Council to find ways to further reward and incentivize the creation of wiki pages.
Our Wiki Templates, which greatly speed up editing for many people, can be found here.

Census Reset

ADD YOURSELF TO CENSUS HERE
As is our custom, we will be resetting the Galactic Hub Census very soon to reflect only entries made after the Origins update released. We do this to avoid our census becoming bloated with too many inactive players.
  • Please use the Google Forms link above to add yourself to the Census rather than editing the Wiki page. It'll be easier for when we reset.
  • Please only sign the Census if you have actually reached our space.
  • Entries without a valid home base location will not be included.
  • Your date of arrival in the Hub should reflect your arrival in the current Galactic Hub, not old Galactic Hub locations. No one (outside of the Council) arrived in the current Hub location before August 2018.

Other Notes

  • The Fauna Hall of Fame has been temporarily locked. has been updated and is ready to use for Origins content! The existing data will be preserved as a record and for players still playing on pre-Origins versions to contribute to, but all discoveries after version 3.00 will go into the new Fauna Hall of Fame.
  • Our beloved Funky Claude is extinct. Rest in funk.
  • Although I have not personally checked every colony yet, most reports I've received indicate that most of our existing colonies are basically unchanged, aside from the fauna.
  • Our other Galactic Hub Chapters continue to provide invaluable services to the Galactic Hub: security from the GHDF, data from the GHEC / GHSH / GHGS, and construction from the GHBG. The only reason I don't mention them as much as the Star League at this point is because they're functioning very well without me needing to touch any aspect of their operations. Although I have to say I've really enjoyed working with the GHEC to develop new fauna classifications.
  • On that note, a poll will be coming in the future for the community to select new 'scientific genus' names for the new fauna, like how diplos are known as "Rangifae" or cows are known as "Ungulatis." New fauna types added with the Origins update do not include genus names, so the GHEC will narrow down selections from the game code, their own suggestions, and suggestions from other research-focused civilizations. Once 3-5 final options are selected, the entire community will have a chance to vote to determine the permanent name of these fauna groups.
I think that covers it for now. I'm sure I'll have more soon. It's beyond great for me personally to be back in this capacity, and I cannot overemphasize how much I love this update. Good journeys interlopers!
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2020.08.28 18:09 HaulA28Augl Top Ten G-ay S-ex Da-ting New

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2020.08.09 08:39 Grampong Honeybee

Honeybee
Honeybee
Could you imagine where our lives would lead?
While I KNEW I would write this Snippet one day, I NEVER thought my Narrative would unfold like THIS, especially with a truly Soul-ripping twist I NEVER noticed until only minutes before the End over a decade later.
I try to avoid too much of my Life bleeding into my Snippets (some is unavoidable, since I write from my Experience). Not this Time, this Snippet shines the spotlight directly on the single biggest part of my Life (other than myself, of course), my Lifelong Love Honeybee.
A Lifelong Love is a very special type of Love, and each Life has room for only ONE Lifelong Love (but that one is FAR from guaranteed). There can only be ONE Love who meets you as a young adult, and continues with you on your Path for decades as together the two of you learn about each other and Reality, and then blaze a Path together into the Future hand-in-hand through births, deaths, jobs, burnt dinners, drunk relatives, and all the other Joys and Pains that Life brings.
For me, that Lifelong Love is Honeybee, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Our Lifelong Love has been sans pareille. She’s the Bestest Lifelong Love in History.
She was my Honeybee, and I was her Honeybee. What we are now to each other in this Impossible Year, and what we will be going forward, remains to be determined.
One Hundred Magickal Hours
On October 15th, 1987, I was home on leave, playing bridge at the local college when two of my buddies had to go to class, and Honeybee decided to Sit Down Beside Me, began talking, and started a Discussion with me. This was our first Moment together. She was a young beautiful brilliant cultured refined six foot blonde dressed in a true vision of late Reagan America with hairspray, Bass Weejuns, natural fibers, glasses with HUGE frames, shoulder pads, and more hairspray. Her Consciousness was blazing, and our Discussion added subject after subject such as why Bork had to be borked, to the impact of fire on the beginnings of civilization, welfare reform, etc. We were jumping from topic to topic, never losing the other, and both of us were having a great time.
An hour later, she had to go to class, but said she would return afterwards and we could continue our Discussion then if I was still here. My other buddy decided to take off and asked I wanted to come along. I said “Nah, she’s really smart and really cute. It’s worth an hour to see if she comes back.”
It’s obvious what happened an hour later.
Honeybee and I just kept our Discussion going hour after hour, topic after topic getting added, over dinner, driving around, back to her place and we talked until we fell asleep. OK, we did a few things OTHER than talking, but that was really just as offshoot of the talking (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it, ask Honeybee for her side if you want).
DC, the OG Road Trip
Friday evening, Honeybee had a road trip planned with a girlfriend of hers to Washington, DC, so I figured that this was going to be the last day I would spend with Honeybee before I had to return to base Monday. Coincidentally (synchronistically?), the driver had to bail so she drafted me into driving (IMO, more than a fair trade for few extra days with Honeybee).
This Road Trip set the standard for the many hundreds to follow.
Honeybee had her Violent Femmes tape, so we sang Blister in the Sun, Kiss Off, Gone Daddy Gone. The radio added I Got My Mind Set on You – George Harrison, Didn’t We Almost Have It All – Whitney Houston, I Think We’re Alone Now – Tiffany.
Everyone had a great time popping around DC for a couple days, Honeybee and I keeping that Discussion rolling. I found a treasure, a Magentalane album by Klaatu at a record store which would add many songs to our NEXT Road Trip like Mrs. Toad’s Cookies – Klaatu and our favorite to hear when we are almost Home, Magentalane – Klaatu
Black Monday
Honeybee was back in class Monday, and I needed to leave Monday evening. Honeybee and I realized that we had something Real and something VERY SPECIAL, but we lived 800 miles apart at the time. We agreed that we would try to see each other as much as possible, and when in the same city we were each other’s priorities, but otherwise we would live separate Lives and inform the other if there was “Something they needed to know,” which meant another Relationship which was rising in seriousness and a potential threat.
During our discussion, we noted that the stock market was crashing and had been the end of last week and this day would be called Black Monday. We laughed when we noticed that it started tanking roughly the same time Honeybee sat down to start our Discussion. We joked that us getting together had crashed the stock market.
The Honeybee Team Supreme
Together, Honeybee and I formed a Partnership capable of absolutely ANYTHING. Where I was weak, she was strong, and vice versa (and our strengths overlapped FAR more than they gapped).
My mental condition which Honeybee and I deduced as around the Asperger’s/Dyssemia area of the autism spectrum (we always refer to it as simply “Dyssemia”). My Dyssemia is inextricably linked to so many of my greatest strengths and weaknesses. While I have phenomenal intellectual capabilities, an Exceptional Memory which functions much like “Flashbacks” where I remember by reliving my Experiences with that information (both Good and Bad), and Math as my primary language, these abilities are achieved through a trade-off leaving me always an Individual, unable to join a Group or Consensus, and totally lacking in ANY “common sense”, lol.
Honeybee, OTOH, has her own set of phenomenal intellectual capabilities, her own Exceptional Memory which functions differently than mine (she considers mine “better”), fantastic language skillz, with a strong connection to and understand of the Consensus.
Honeybee can process data and multitask better than anyone, period. Watching her at full speed is an amazing sight. My specialties are pattern recognition, Gnosis, and penetrating focus. As individuals, we were Phenomenal. As the Honeybee Team Supreme, we were Transcendent.
Honeybee was the Yin to my Yang. We made an unbeatable Partnership, and proceeded to start taking Reality by storm.
Honeybee
I can't imagine how my life would be
If all your gravity did not hit me
Oh, don't you see?
Darling, my honeybee
Transplants
After spending a few years finishing college and taking the first few steps into the outside World, Honeybee and I recognized that we were “deadended” in our current location and decided to relocate. I wisely agreed with her when she suggested Central Florida because “If people save for a year or two to spend a week there, it’s GOT to be a good place to live.” And it hasn’t just been been a good place to live, it’s been SPECTACULAR!!! Honeybee made another of her great calls which possibly saved our Lives.
Honeybee and I packed every item we owned (and her cat who had adopted me as his hero) from The Old Apartment into a U-Haul and drove to the horizon to start our new Life without ANY idea where we were going to Live other than “Central Florida”. We were poster candidates for “Fools Rush In”, but Honeybee and I pulled it off yet again. We were truly The Honeybee Team Supreme, and nothing was impossible for us.
It was Just Like Heaven
But here we are
After all the messes and confessions
To the stars
That we never really owned as ours
The Honeybee Team Supreme’s Greatest Hits
Honeybee and I have shared so many truly spectacular Moments over our decades together. Here’s a sample of the highlights.
Travel
Honeybee and I took our first Road Trip the day after we met, and we never stopped until we recently parted.
The Honeybee Team Supreme does Road Trips RIGHT. The vehicle barely stops, bathroom breaks try to fit in gas stops, prepack food, we have it down after MANY hundreds.
Songs are chosen for singalongs, especially to stay awake driving. We started with our playlist from that OG DC trip and have added so many more like Goodbye Yellow Brick Road – Elton John, Paradise by the Dashboard Light – Meatloaf, One Headlight – Wallflowers, etc.
The Honeybee Team Supreme has been knocking out “Must Sees” for our Babybees as we enjoy them ourselves. A partial list:
Grand Canyon St Louis Arch NYC Washington DC Monument Valley Pike’s Peak Garden of the Gods Graceland Petroglyph National Monument Monticello Salt Lake City Yellowstone
We watched one of the very final Dreams Come True Fireworks performances from the top of the Contemporary Resort while eating unlimited sushi with an open bar as part of our hundreds of trips to Disneyworld.
Movies
Honeybee and I shared our Love of movies from the very beginning of our Conversation. We were both surprised we shared the same 40 year old black and white movie as our favorite: Holiday Inn. I had discovered it wrapping Christmas presents with my mother, as did Honeybee, so we naturally made this a Honeybee Team Supreme tradition.
We debated the “proper” ending for movies like Pretty in Pink, tossed themes back and forth, and were our own Honeybee Team Supreme version of Siskel and Ebert.
Honeybee and I Loved going to the movies, and 1999 the peak for us. Virtually every time we saw a movie, it was either phenomenal or fun. That was a GREAT year with Honeybee. Look at the movies we saw:
10 Things I Hate About You 13th Warrior American Beauty American Pie Any Given Sunday Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me Blair Witch Project Being John Malkovich Boys Don't Cry Cider House Rules Dick Dogma Election Eyes Wide Shut Existenz Fight Club For the Love of the Game Go Green Mile Iron Giant House on Haunted Hill Last Night Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels Matrix The Mummy Never Been Kissed Notting Hill Office Space Payback Magnolia Man on the Moon Mystery Men She's All That Sixth Sense Sleepy Hollow South Park Star Wars Episode I Stigmata Summer of Sam Talented Mr. Ripley Tarzan Thomas Crown Affair Topsy-Turvy Toy Story 2 Wild Wild West The World Is Not Enough
And just seeing the movies doesn’t cover the whole “movie experience”, because so many times our friends would add some of the best parts (like “Heavily Implied” taking on new meaning after American Beauty)
We Love Charlie Kaufman, Spike Jonze, Michel Gondry, and similar movies like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind with Wish You Were Here, Adaptation, etc. We Love classic movies, art movies, animation, etc.
Let’s just say Honeybee and I Love movies a LOT (and have a thousand discs still to watch).
Television
Honeybee and I were First Fandom for Reality TV, watching the OG Real World. While MOST Reality TV is beyond the Pale for us, we have passed this on to our Babybees. As a Hive, we watch Big Brother, Amazing Race, Project Runway, Top Chef, and similar shows and analyze the competitors and the competition (our Babybees are VERY astute).
Theatre
Live theatre has always been a special treat for Honeybee and me, and something we truly savor. Some of our favorites:
A spectacular performance of Fuenteovejuna at the Folger Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, DC in one of their rare non-Shakespeare plays.
An incredible college performance of The Mystery of Edwin Drood by Rupert Holmes of Escape (The Pina Colada Song) in the Annie Russell Theatre where the audience selection of the ending gave a lesser player a chance to shine, and boy did he.
So many local and community theatres like Manhattan South Studio Theatre, with productions like The Brady Bunch (The Second Coming of Jan), the Glass Jar, and countless others. Those shows took on additional special meaning when we knew the actors or writers.
The UNFORGETTABLE (unless you were my friend who slept through the whole thing) most self-indulgent FIVE hour Sherlock Holmes play EVER (with two intermissions). The second intermission included a police scene with a dead body in the middle of the road (we concluded the body was someone trying to RUN as fast as possible away from the Play, and that he was in better shape since he wasn’t going back inside for the rest), and ended with the announcement “IF anyone wants to go back in and watch, we will be starting soon.” We ALL rolled at the “IF”.
And, of course, Bandstand on Broadway.
Sports
My family’s relationship with Sports runs very deep and very wide. Honeybee jumped right in and she did a great job.
While I’m not sure she’s EVER understood the point of showing up to a spring training game over an hour early (“Why watch them bat when it doesn’t count?”), Honeybee REALLY enjoyed the one spring training game we NEVER saw. We met a few of my cousins before the game at the team’s hotel bar for a drink. Much like that Lays Potato chip, ONE drink is NOT possible when 1980 American League Rookie of the Year Super Joe Charboneau is buying using the Indian’s team expense account (Go Joe Charboneau for SURE). And when Super Joe is buying the drinks, getting you drunk, and telling story after story of his exploits, you never make it to the game. Those stories start with the famous ones that surfaced his rookie year, like drinking beer through a straw through his NOSE, him fixing that nose when it was broken using pliers and a few shots of Jack Daniel’s, and doing his own dental work, but they don’t end there. Honeybee and I both agree, once in their Life, everyone should have Super Joe get them drunk (it’s not to be missed).
Honeybee and I went to a LOT of sporting events, but my favorite Moment with her concerning sports was a Moment she took the initiative and Planned herself for me.
For Christmas in 2002, Honeybee gave me two tickets for us to see the North Carolina Scholastic Classic on January 20, 2003. That meant I was FINALLY going to get to see Lebron James play in my alma mater’s Green and Gold Irish jersey (Honeybee gave me one of those the next year). So Honeybee and I made another of our patented Road Trips, and I was not disappointed to see in person the phenomenon my brother told me could have jumped to the NBA after his freshman year of high school. LeBron did the IMPOSSIBLE, he successfully DEFENDED a 3 on 1 fast break (no human being should be able to do that). After I saw that, I turned to Honeybee and said “If he doesn’t get hurt and doesn’t lose his head, he can make a run at surpassing Jordan, because LeBron is drawing from the largest skill set I’ve ever seen with a perfect body.” Honeybee agreed and still does.
Concerts
Honeybee and I saw so very many great concerts together, there’s no way to do them justice. The best part for me was ALWAYS that I was sharing the experience with Honeybee (she ALWAYS makes even the most bland Experience wonderful for me).
We watched Crosby, Stills, and Nash open for the Grateful Dead at Three Rivers Stadium after wandering around for hours with the Deadheads (and we still have out tie-dye t-shirts).
Lifehouse, Everclear, and Matchbox Twenty performed a triple bill where a Joyous Art Alexakis who stole the entire show from Rob Thomas’ homecoming by having security chase him and his wireless guitar up and down the stairs of the Orena.
Wang Chung, Flock of Seagulls, Missing Persons, Gene Loves Jezebel rocked the House of Blues
We jammed to Experimental Jazz at the Disney Institute, countless concerts at Disneyworld (we skipped most because they didn’t fit our schedule well), etc.
Ushered in 2000 with Blue Meridian at the Have A Nice Day Cafe.
We stood right in front of the stage on Pleasure Island while Modern English sang Melt With You for food, followed by World Party in the rain.
Honeybee had to drag me away from Steve Kilbey of The Church when he was was too busy talking to me about my business and playing the “Proud Poppa” showing off his daughter’s artwork from college to remember to get ready for the concert in a tiny club.
Roger Daltrey delivered Tommy backed by the Cleveland Orchestra at Blossom in a performance Roger KNEW he had in him and had always wanted to give, and he gave that performance of his Life (we were so glad he didn’t “Die Before He Get Old” for Honeybee and I to have yet another of our Moments).
Our LAST concert was March 7, right before concerts went away, when we watched Michael Stanley Strike Up the Band One FINAL Time from the first row of the orchestra pit (if Honeybee and I never see another concert together, that was a Moment I’ll be happy to go out on).
People
The people who have crossed Honeybee’s and my Path, and walked with us for a while, demonstrate some SERIOUS “strength through diversity”.
Honeybee and I have yet to find people we don’t like (other than rude hurtful people, of course), and we have socialized across the entire social spectrum. We’ve gone out to dinner with couples who were having their version of our “smothered chicken”, we’ve joked with billionaires over which loge they watched the baseball team they own, we’ve watched Super Bowls and NBA Finals with hoop friends from pick-up games on the playground, we’ve plot doctored books and had the authors dedicate the book to us in thanks, etc.
Many interrelated circles of friends grew around the Honeybee Team Supreme, we had friends of all sorts. Honeybee and I struggled to figure out if we could fit TWO days at home a week into our social callendar.
Look around
We made a garden of the love we found
So many reasons I would fight to stay
You're the courage when I fade
Take a look at what we've made
Marriage
In 1996, I was working on our finances, and I shared with Honeybee that we would save about $3,000 if we were married, she got one of those looks of hers on her face, and I asked “Do you want to?” Not the most romantic or greatest of proposals, but she accepted anyway.
That great group of friends we assembled came together and threw us a FABULOUS Wedding, a bit Fandango style. We did everything backwards, a formal brunch followed by the ceremony in a beautiful rose garden. The reception was at a friends’ house, and then the after-reception of pizza and beer at yet another friends’ house around the block. Special people who shared a special day with us.
Missing were any rings. Honeybee is VERY particular about jewelry. She doesn’t like men wearing jewelry, so I have NEVER worn a wedding ring, at her request. As for her rings, at the time we could not justify the Engagement Ring she wanted, a 1 ½ carat emerald cut ring. I promised that ring to Honeybee, and she will have it, even if I have to give it to her at the finalization of the divorce as a “Thank you for having BEEN my wife” Ring rather than an Engagement Ring.
That silly ring, it wasn't meant to be
Luckily you saw in me
Something I couldn't see
”My Mind Is Gone, Is It EVER Coming Back!?!”
In late 2003, we succeeded in becoming pregnant with our first Babybee. The Collaboration we had been Planning and Loving toward had reached a new stage. still remember making special note of one of those Moments with Honeybee in early 2004 when we were Pregnant with our son. I brought her breakfast in bed (coffee for decades was standard, with extras like breakfast often added), and found her crying. I asked in a panic what was wrong, and Honeybee sobbed out, “My Mind is gone, is it EVER coming back!?!” All these strange Feelings and Emotions were taking over her Mind and Body, and she could tell that she was changing and becoming different than she had been before we got Pregnant.
I laughed and explained to her that those changes were her Body and Mind changing to give Birth to Babybee and become a Mommybee. I said that those changes were going to be in place until we decided to stop having children and breastfeeding, which was planned after our second child in about 5 years. That brought more tears from Honeybee and more laughter from me.
I NEVER should have been laughing, because I was horribly wrong about her Mind returning in 5 years. That wonderful incredible beautiful Mind she had shared with me for almost 20 years NEVER returned to what she shared with me before getting pregnant.
I NOW see the Moment of which I made that special note was NOT simply one of those tender Husband/Wife Moments that they look back on fondly (as Honeybee and I did so many times with this Moment, each of which now carries a touch of ash to me). No, this was the Honeybee I met in 1987, that incredible brilliant beautiful young woman to whom I instantly Bonded and Loved, with whom I started “officially” cohabiting in 1990, sweated out Midwest winters with windows open on a third floor of a Victorian house turned into a VERY cheap apartment (we did go out to dinner once a week for smothered chicken for under $20 total, tip included), packed every single one of our belongings into the back of a U-Haul to drive a thousand miles without a CLUE of where we were going to Live in 1993 (at once the Greatest and most Foolish thing we EVER did), started a business based on sharing my Love with others, launched her career and proudly watched her climb the corporate ladder saying “Farewell” to me, HER Honeybee
The Honeybee I Knew and Loved was actually saying “Goodbye” to me, and I didn’t Know it. I didn’t realize that my Honeybee I had Known and Loved for 16 years was leaving me, and from then on gradually my Loving Partner Honeybee would being replaced one tiny piece at a time by Mommybee, who does NOT Love me (or even understand I’m human) and sees me only as a resource for our Babybees.
I NEVER should have laughed, I should have been crying right alongside her. Now, I’ll be doing a LOT of crying not by her side waving Goodbye to my wonderful Honeybee in the Past who left me all those many years ago, but I never Knew she had gone. I’ve got a LOT of mourning to catch up on.
I’m giving you a horribly belated Goodbye now, Honeybee.
I’ve missed you so very much, especially these last few years. I’ve been so terribly Lost and Lonely without you (Mommybee abandoned our Discussion years ago, and you’ve only chipped in every so often since). I’m sorry I didn’t give you a proper Goodbye at the Time, but I didn’t Know you were going away Forever. We BOTH thought you were coming back. I didn’t even Know you were still Gone until last month. I really didn’t, Honeybee. Honest.
Such a fool
I took your love and I bent all the rules
You took the blow and didn't let it show
Stuck around to let me know
Built a family of our own
Male Light and Female Void
How could the Honeybee Team Supreme have missed such a crucial element, which eventually derailed their entire Plan? The answer is found in a VERY strange place.
Honeybee and I enjoyed exploring some of the most obscure areas of Reality in hope of finding Art and Artists. One of the most UNIQUE and GREATEST examples of Art we EVER found was the comic series Cerebus done by Dave Sim. IMO, Cerebus is the Finnegan’s Wake of comics and Sim is hands down the greatest living comic Artist. Sim’s 26 years of constant work on Cerebus produced that Artistic Alchemy where the Art and the Artist merge (which Sim later takes religious and visionary, producing an even MORE idiosyncratic work).
For all their magnificence, Sim and Cerebus are marred by what is a fatal flaw in most people’s eyes: Sim does not think or believe the genders are equal, and expresses his views in a strangely ham-fisted way which regularly melts down.
Honeybee and I LOVED extracting those parts which were Outrageous, and those parts which Sim had hit Truth (he has HUGE amounts of BOTH). Sometimes Outrageous and Truth were the same, as often happens in Art.
Here’s a summary of Sim’s system:
The Thinking Reasoning Male Light is Seminal Energy, while the Feeling Emotional Female Void is an Omnivorous Parasite.
The Male Light and Female Void can be combined by marriage into a Merged Permanence, with the components now called Merged Light and Merged Void. When Kids come Merged Light becomes Family Man.
All these Voids can be combined into a “Greater Void Wife and Kids” Omnivorous Engine, which serves the Vaginal Bottom Line. The Omnivorous Engine drives society through Lesser Void of White Collar Make-Work Programs.
The Female Void is essentially a black hole of resource need “For the Kids”, based on an Emotional and Feeling level. The Male Light cannot win on the Thinking and Reason level, as those are higher.
Many people see Sim’s Female Void as an Evil Woman, and dismiss him as a misogynist.
I’ve stripped as much of Sim’s “Simness” out of his system as I can. Here are some original sources for those who wish to read for themselves (insert all trigger warnings here): Male Light and Female Void, Reads, Tangents.
Mommybee
The Honeybee Team Supreme’s mistake is to think we were already a Merged Permanence which had avoided the Female Void issue. Honeybee is a Brilliant and Conscious woman, NOT a Female Void. We had been the Honeybee Team Supreme for almost 20 years, and no Female Void issues. We Knew the Female Void existed, but we thought we had the Female Void beat.
We were wrong. We were messing with Mother Nature, and it’s NOT nice to mess with Mother Nature.
We had not anticipated Mommybee being a Female Void and slowly robbing Honeybee of her Consciousness, leaving only Mommybee the Feeling Female Void.
When I joked with Honeybee when we were pregnant with our first Babybee, I had a general idea of the process, but the parts I missed were crucial. Emotion, Feeling, and Thought are progressive levels of abstraction, and the higher rests on the lower, with Thought supported by Feeling supported by Emotion.
My wonderful Conscious Honeybee had those three perfectly balanced, but when we got pregnant, Mommybee the Female Void which needs to provide for her Babybees ABOVE ALL ELSE disrupted her balance and Mommybee started to take over for Honeybee. As long as Honeybee and Mommybee agreed, all was well, but if they disagreed, Mommybee would win with Feeling and degrade Honeybee’s Consciousness a piece more.
I had NO idea that Mommybee was doing this until last month, so I kept executing the Plan which Honeybee and I had developed over 20 years. When Mommybee would criticize me and overrule me, I thought that was Honeybee, so I would try to Reason with her, explain that I was doing as we had Planned. Mommybee, the Female Void, saw Reason as a THREAT to her Babybees, and fought Honeybee’s Reason, and Honeybee played the rope in a Tug of War between me and Mommybee over her Babybees (a war I had NO CLUE was happening).
I am horrified that I was DESTROYING Honeybee when I was trying to follow the Plan the Honeybee Team Supreme had decided years earlier. But this Tug of War has been going on for 16 years, and Mommybee is clearly in control, with only little glimpses of Honeybee surfacing every so often.
Honeybee has lost her Consciousness, leaving Mommybee in charge until Mommybee can stop worrying so much because the Babybees are fully raised. That’s another five to ten years of Mommybee before there is much chance of Honeybee returning on a regular basis.
MAYBE.
What If?
Neither Honeybee nor I knew that us finally having the children to whom we so looked forward and had planned and worked for 15 years would unleash Mommybee and set in motion a process that eventually stole my Honeybee from me just like Alzheimer’s had taken my mother, one piece of her fabulous Mind disappearing at a Time until that incredible woman I Love so greatly was unrecognizable and GONE.
But if we HAD Known, would we have changed things (I would have changed how much I appreciated those days with just me and Honeybee, and then been prepared to adjust to Mommybee rather than blindsided)?
Other than being forewarned that Honeybee was going to transform into Mommybee, and preparing for that change, I don’t think there’s ANYTHING we would have done differently. Honeybee wanted me for her Love, her Partner, and the Father of her Babybees. She would have been incomplete without her Babybees, and I would NEVER want her incomplete for me to selfishly spend more Time with Honeybee, regardless of the Pain fulfilling our Dream of Babybees has caused me. Neither of us would have wanted anyone else to be the Father of her Babybees.
And I would never trade a Moment I got to spend with Honeybee for all the Pain and Suffering which Mommybee later inflicted upon me.
Soulmates
While Honeybee and I are Lifelong Loves, I thought for certain that we were also Soulmates, Ride together until one Dies, just like my parents with my father adding months to my mother’s Life through sheer force of Will and an eyedropper to feed her (and expert medical and legal skillz). In retrospect, I really should have paid MUCH more attention to how much Honeybee enjoyed For No One by the Beatles (she’s NEVER “needed” me, our Team Supreme was based on “Love” and “want”, NOT “need”) and the precedent of HER parent’s marriage, who separated and divorced when Honeybee and her brother were the same ages as our Babybees.
While Honeybee intended to be my Soulmate, Mommybee is NOT my Soulmate, she is a Female Void who has slowly taken over my Honeybee, one piece at a time.
Mommybee wants all my Resources and me to be happy just handing them over. I disagree, and that provokes Mommybee to attack me as if her Babybees’ Lives depend on it. Our differing POVs on this point DESPERATELY needs to be solved, but no solution is “pretty”.
Babybees
When I look at the Babybees which Honeybee and I Planned, Worked, and Loved so very hard to bring into Reality, I see that our efforts exceeded even our wildest Dreams. Our Babybees are absolutely spectacular, even more beautiful and brilliant than Honeybee and I could have ever Hoped. They are each special in their own ways, taking after Honeybee and I, yet adding their own unique spin. I could not be more proud of myself, Honeybee, Mommybee, and the Babybees in making this Collaboration a such a roaring success.
There will be NO Cat’s in the Cradle for me. I was with my Babybees CONSTANTLY with only a few hours off at a time until Mommybee decided to leave with our Babybees last month. I will always know that I was there during ALL their important formative years, because I’ve changed more diapers, driven to more sporting events, spent fewer days away from the Babybees, etc.
I even added my own new special touch to their education, riffing off Socrates, and taking his method to the next level. Instead of me focusing on pouring information and knowledge into our Babybees Minds by using questions to teach THEM, I let them teach ME their next lesson while I “played dumb”. This allowed me to focus their teaching attention at the exact point they needed to Know next, while giving them great confidence in their abilities to observe Reality and draw proper conclusions. I have helped them assemble models of Reality unlike ANY before them, totally unique and custom fit to THEM in new ways they found for themselves.
I look forward to the great Paths that will unfold before them. Those Paths will be Magickal and Marvelous. These Babybees of Honeybee and mine are truly special.
I just REALLY wish Honeybee and I could celebrate them. Or that I could celebrate them with Mommybee and our Babybees, rather than just watch their magnificent glory from a distance, which is what I anticipate happening.
But here we are
After all the messes and confessions
To the scars
That we never really owned as ours
One First Date
So, what’s next for me?
I’m going to Disneyworld, of course. What else would make any sense?
My Plan is to try and see what, if ANY, health dynamic might begin to be established between Mommybee and myself, now that I realize I am no longer married to Honeybee. Some sort of effective dynamic needs to be established because I’m going to be co-parenting with Mommybee for years, regardless of anything else.
Mommybee has agreed to take a day off her very important job (it really is, I’m very proud of how fantastically Honeybee/Mommybee’s career has progressed and I’m proud of the bits of help I’ve given her here and there, she’s a truly incredible woman) and leave the Babybees at her home so the the two of us can have a CHANCE to spend a day at Disneyworld as a couple like we we used to decades ago (the entire family tried a few weeks ago and didn’t make it long).
But I also have a Hope.
I’ve asked Mommybee to stay at her home with the Babybees this time and let me have the day with Honeybee.
I’m counting this as that “First Date” Honeybee and I always joked about NEVER having. At this point, I just want one day and one date with Honeybee, and this might be the LAST and ONLY chance I ever have.
I’m going to try and have a Moment with Honeybee and tell her how much I Miss her and I Love her. I Know now not to use those Facts and Logic which Honeybee Loves so much, but Mommybee despises when they conflict with her and her Babybees’ desires. I’ll focus on all those great Feeling and Emotions Honeybee and I had in the Past (and there were SO very many, and they were SO very great).
I’ll NEVER be able to fit all I want to say to Honeybee into a single Moment, even if we manage to stretch that Moment the entire day. But there is one thing I ABSOLUTELY WILL tell Honeybee.
“You’re the one. You’re the ONLY one.”
She’s my Honeybee, and I am her Honeybee.
She’s the Bestest Lifelong Love EVER.
For Crying Out Loud, I Love you, Honeybee.
And if our world comes tumbling down
I never could forgive myself for leaving out
You're the one
You are the only one
Won't you decide?
Won't you decide?
I want you to soar
Don't doubt anymore
(Little by little, we meet in the middle)
Won't you decide?
(What's your name?)
Won't you decide?
Snippet Playlist Alone Again, Naturally – Gilbert O’Sullivan Always on Your Side – Sheryl Crow, Sting Breakeven – The Script Circles – Post Malone Don’t Speak – No Doubt Far Away – Nickelback Happier – Marshmallo Here Come Those Tears Again – Jackson Browne Here’s Where the Story Ends – Sundays How’s It Gonna Be – Third Eye Blind In My Life – Beatles It’s All Coming Back to Me – Meatloaf My Immortal – Evanescence Rainy Days and Mondays – Carpenters The Reason – Hoobastank Reelin’ in the Years – Steely Dan She’s Gone – Hall and Oates Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word – Elton John Traces – Classics IV True – Spandau Ballet When We Were Young – Adele Winner Takes It All – ABBA Wonderwall – Oasis
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2020.08.06 14:42 Grampong Honeybee

Honeybee
Honeybee
Could you imagine where our lives would lead?
While I KNEW I would write this Snippet one day, I NEVER thought my Narrative would unfold like THIS, especially with a truly Soul-ripping twist I NEVER noticed until only minutes before the End over a decade later.
I try to avoid too much of my Life bleeding into my Snippets (some is unavoidable, since I write from my Experience). Not this Time, this Snippet shines the spotlight directly on the single biggest part of my Life (other than myself, of course), my Lifelong Love Honeybee.
A Lifelong Love is a very special type of Love, and each Life has room for only ONE Lifelong Love (but that one is FAR from guaranteed). There can only be ONE Love who meets you as a young adult, and continues with you on your Path for decades as together the two of you learn about each other and Reality, and then blaze a Path together into the Future hand-in-hand through births, deaths, jobs, burnt dinners, drunk relatives, and all the other Joys and Pains that Life brings.
For me, that Lifelong Love is Honeybee, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Our Lifelong Love has been sans pareille. She’s the Bestest Lifelong Love in History.
She was my Honeybee, and I was her Honeybee. What we are now to each other in this Impossible Year, and what we will be going forward, remains to be determined.
One Hundred Magickal Hours
On October 15th, 1987, I was home on leave, playing bridge at the local college when two of my buddies had to go to class, and Honeybee decided to Sit Down Beside Me, began talking, and started a Discussion with me. This was our first Moment together. She was a young beautiful brilliant cultured refined six foot blonde dressed in a true vision of late Reagan America with hairspray, Bass Weejuns, natural fibers, glasses with HUGE frames, shoulder pads, and more hairspray. Her Consciousness was blazing, and our Discussion added subject after subject such as why Bork had to be borked, to the impact of fire on the beginnings of civilization, welfare reform, etc. We were jumping from topic to topic, never losing the other, and both of us were having a great time.
An hour later, she had to go to class, but said she would return afterwards and we could continue our Discussion then if I was still here. My other buddy decided to take off and asked I wanted to come along. I said “Nah, she’s really smart and really cute. It’s worth an hour to see if she comes back.”
It’s obvious what happened an hour later.
Honeybee and I just kept our Discussion going hour after hour, topic after topic getting added, over dinner, driving around, back to her place and we talked until we fell asleep. OK, we did a few things OTHER than talking, but that was really just as offshoot of the talking (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it, ask Honeybee for her side if you want).
DC, the OG Road Trip
Friday evening, Honeybee had a road trip planned with a girlfriend of hers to Washington, DC, so I figured that this was going to be the last day I would spend with Honeybee before I had to return to base Monday. Coincidentally (synchronistically?), the driver had to bail so she drafted me into driving (IMO, more than a fair trade for few extra days with Honeybee).
This Road Trip set the standard for the many hundreds to follow.
Honeybee had her Violent Femmes tape, so we sang Blister in the Sun, Kiss Off, Gone Daddy Gone. The radio added I Got My Mind Set on You – George Harrison, Didn’t We Almost Have It All – Whitney Houston, I Think We’re Alone Now – Tiffany.
Everyone had a great time popping around DC for a couple days, Honeybee and I keeping that Discussion rolling. I found a treasure, a Magentalane album by Klaatu at a record store which would add many songs to our NEXT Road Trip like Mrs. Toad’s Cookies – Klaatu and our favorite to hear when we are almost Home, Magentalane – Klaatu
Black Monday
Honeybee was back in class Monday, and I needed to leave Monday evening. Honeybee and I realized that we had something Real and something VERY SPECIAL, but we lived 800 miles apart at the time. We agreed that we would try to see each other as much as possible, and when in the same city we were each other’s priorities, but otherwise we would live separate Lives and inform the other if there was “Something they needed to know,” which meant another Relationship which was rising in seriousness and a potential threat.
During our discussion, we noted that the stock market was crashing and had been the end of last week and this day would be called Black Monday. We laughed when we noticed that it started tanking roughly the same time Honeybee sat down to start our Discussion. We joked that us getting together had crashed the stock market.
The Honeybee Team Supreme
Together, Honeybee and I formed a Partnership capable of absolutely ANYTHING. Where I was weak, she was strong, and vice versa (and our strengths overlapped FAR more than they gapped).
My mental condition which Honeybee and I deduced as around the Asperger’s/Dyssemia area of the autism spectrum (we always refer to it as simply “Dyssemia”). My Dyssemia is inextricably linked to so many of my greatest strengths and weaknesses. While I have phenomenal intellectual capabilities, an Exceptional Memory which functions much like “Flashbacks” where I remember by reliving my Experiences with that information (both Good and Bad), and Math as my primary language, these abilities are achieved through a trade-off leaving me always an Individual, unable to join a Group or Consensus, and totally lacking in ANY “common sense”, lol.
Honeybee, OTOH, has her own set of phenomenal intellectual capabilities, her own Exceptional Memory which functions differently than mine (she considers mine “better”), fantastic language skillz, with a strong connection to and understand of the Consensus.
Honeybee can process data and multitask better than anyone, period. Watching her at full speed is an amazing sight. My specialties are pattern recognition, Gnosis, and penetrating focus. As individuals, we were Phenomenal. As the Honeybee Team Supreme, we were Transcendent.
Honeybee was the Yin to my Yang. We made an unbeatable Partnership, and proceeded to start taking Reality by storm.
Honeybee
I can't imagine how my life would be
If all your gravity did not hit me
Oh, don't you see?
Darling, my honeybee
Transplants
After spending a few years finishing college and taking the first few steps into the outside World, Honeybee and I recognized that we were “deadended” in our current location and decided to relocate. I wisely agreed with her when she suggested Central Florida because “If people save for a year or two to spend a week there, it’s GOT to be a good place to live.” And it hasn’t just been been a good place to live, it’s been SPECTACULAR!!! Honeybee made another of her great calls which possibly saved our Lives.
Honeybee and I packed every item we owned (and her cat who had adopted me as his hero) from The Old Apartment into a U-Haul and drove to the horizon to start our new Life without ANY idea where we were going to Live other than “Central Florida”. We were poster candidates for “Fools Rush In”, but Honeybee and I pulled it off yet again. We were truly The Honeybee Team Supreme, and nothing was impossible for us.
It was Just Like Heaven
But here we are
After all the messes and confessions
To the stars
That we never really owned as ours
The Honeybee Team Supreme’s Greatest Hits
Honeybee and I have shared so many truly spectacular Moments over our decades together. Here’s a sample of the highlights.
Travel
Honeybee and I took our first Road Trip the day after we met, and we never stopped until we recently parted.
The Honeybee Team Supreme does Road Trips RIGHT. The vehicle barely stops, bathroom breaks try to fit in gas stops, prepack food, we have it down after MANY hundreds.
Songs are chosen for singalongs, especially to stay awake driving. We started with our playlist from that OG DC trip and have added so many more like Goodbye Yellow Brick Road – Elton John, Paradise by the Dashboard Light – Meatloaf, One Headlight – Wallflowers, etc.
The Honeybee Team Supreme has been knocking out “Must Sees” for our Babybees as we enjoy them ourselves. A partial list:
Grand Canyon St Louis Arch NYC Washington DC Monument Valley Pike’s Peak Garden of the Gods Graceland Petroglyph National Monument Monticello Salt Lake City Yellowstone
We watched one of the very final Dreams Come True Fireworks performances from the top of the Contemporary Resort while eating unlimited sushi with an open bar as part of our hundreds of trips to Disneyworld.
Movies
Honeybee and I shared our Love of movies from the very beginning of our Conversation. We were both surprised we shared the same 40 year old black and white movie as our favorite: Holiday Inn. I had discovered it wrapping Christmas presents with my mother, as did Honeybee, so we naturally made this a Honeybee Team Supreme tradition.
We debated the “proper” ending for movies like Pretty in Pink, tossed themes back and forth, and were our own Honeybee Team Supreme version of Siskel and Ebert.
Honeybee and I Loved going to the movies, and 1999 the peak for us. Virtually every time we saw a movie, it was either phenomenal or fun. That was a GREAT year with Honeybee. Look at the movies we saw:
10 Things I Hate About You 13th Warrior American Beauty American Pie Any Given Sunday Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me Blair Witch Project Being John Malkovich Boys Don't Cry Cider House Rules Dick Dogma Election Eyes Wide Shut Existenz Fight Club For the Love of the Game Go Green Mile Iron Giant House on Haunted Hill Last Night Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels Matrix The Mummy Never Been Kissed Notting Hill Office Space Payback Magnolia Man on the Moon Mystery Men She's All That Sixth Sense Sleepy Hollow South Park Star Wars Episode I Stigmata Summer of Sam Talented Mr. Ripley Tarzan Thomas Crown Affair Topsy-Turvy Toy Story 2 Wild Wild West The World Is Not Enough
And just seeing the movies doesn’t cover the whole “movie experience”, because so many times our friends would add some of the best parts (like “Heavily Implied” taking on new meaning after American Beauty)
We Love Charlie Kaufman, Spike Jonze, Michel Gondry, and similar movies like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind with Wish You Were Here, Adaptation, etc. We Love classic movies, art movies, animation, etc.
Let’s just say Honeybee and I Love movies a LOT (and have a thousand discs still to watch).
Television
Honeybee and I were First Fandom for Reality TV, watching the OG Real World. While MOST Reality TV is beyond the Pale for us, we have passed this on to our Babybees. As a Hive, we watch Big Brother, Amazing Race, Project Runway, Top Chef, and similar shows and analyze the competitors and the competition (our Babybees are VERY astute).
Theatre
Live theatre has always been a special treat for Honeybee and me, and something we truly savor. Some of our favorites:
A spectacular performance of Fuenteovejuna at the Folger Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, DC in one of their rare non-Shakespeare plays.
An incredible college performance of The Mystery of Edwin Drood by Rupert Holmes of Escape (The Pina Colada Song) in the Annie Russell Theatre where the audience selection of the ending gave a lesser player a chance to shine, and boy did he.
So many local and community theatres like Manhattan South Studio Theatre, with productions like The Brady Bunch (The Second Coming of Jan), the Glass Jar, and countless others. Those shows took on additional special meaning when we knew the actors or writers.
The UNFORGETTABLE (unless you were my friend who slept through the whole thing) most self-indulgent FIVE hour Sherlock Holmes play EVER (with two intermissions). The second intermission included a police scene with a dead body in the middle of the road (we concluded the body was someone trying to RUN as fast as possible away from the Play, and that he was in better shape since he wasn’t going back inside for the rest), and ended with the announcement “IF anyone wants to go back in and watch, we will be starting soon.” We ALL rolled at the “IF”.
And, of course, Bandstand on Broadway.
Sports
My family’s relationship with Sports runs very deep and very wide. Honeybee jumped right in and she did a great job.
While I’m not sure she’s EVER understood the point of showing up to a spring training game over an hour early (“Why watch them bat when it doesn’t count?”), Honeybee REALLY enjoyed the one spring training game we NEVER saw. We met a few of my cousins before the game at the team’s hotel bar for a drink. Much like that Lays Potato chip, ONE drink is NOT possible when 1980 American League Rookie of the Year Super Joe Charboneau is buying using the Indian’s team expense account (Go Joe Charboneau for SURE). And when Super Joe is buying the drinks, getting you drunk, and telling story after story of his exploits, you never make it to the game. Those stories start with the famous ones that surfaced his rookie year, like drinking beer through a straw through his NOSE, him fixing that nose when it was broken using pliers and a few shots of Jack Daniel’s, and doing his own dental work, but they don’t end there. Honeybee and I both agree, once in their Life, everyone should have Super Joe get them drunk (it’s not to be missed).
Honeybee and I went to a LOT of sporting events, but my favorite Moment with her concerning sports was a Moment she took the initiative and Planned herself for me.
For Christmas in 2002, Honeybee gave me two tickets for us to see the North Carolina Scholastic Classic on January 20, 2003. That meant I was FINALLY going to get to see Lebron James play in my alma mater’s Green and Gold Irish jersey (Honeybee gave me one of those the next year). So Honeybee and I made another of our patented Road Trips, and I was not disappointed to see in person the phenomenon my brother told me could have jumped to the NBA after his freshman year of high school. LeBron did the IMPOSSIBLE, he successfully DEFENDED a 3 on 1 fast break (no human being should be able to do that). After I saw that, I turned to Honeybee and said “If he doesn’t get hurt and doesn’t lose his head, he can make a run at surpassing Jordan, because LeBron is drawing from the largest skill set I’ve ever seen with a perfect body.” Honeybee agreed and still does.
Concerts
Honeybee and I saw so very many great concerts together, there’s no way to do them justice. The best part for me was ALWAYS that I was sharing the experience with Honeybee (she ALWAYS makes even the most bland Experience wonderful for me).
We watched Crosby, Stills, and Nash open for the Grateful Dead at Three Rivers Stadium after wandering around for hours with the Deadheads (and we still have out tie-dye t-shirts).
Lifehouse, Everclear, and Matchbox Twenty performed a triple bill where a Joyous Art Alexakis who stole the entire show from Rob Thomas’ homecoming by having security chase him and his wireless guitar up and down the stairs of the Orena.
Wang Chung, Flock of Seagulls, Missing Persons, Gene Loves Jezebel rocked the House of Blues
We jammed to Experimental Jazz at the Disney Institute, countless concerts at Disneyworld (we skipped most because they didn’t fit our schedule well), etc.
Ushered in 2000 with Blue Meridian at the Have A Nice Day Cafe.
We stood right in front of the stage on Pleasure Island while Modern English sang Melt With You for food, followed by World Party in the rain.
Honeybee had to drag me away from Steve Kilbey of The Church when he was was too busy talking to me about my business and playing the “Proud Poppa” showing off his daughter’s artwork from college to remember to get ready for the concert in a tiny club.
Roger Daltrey delivered Tommy backed by the Cleveland Orchestra at Blossom in a performance Roger KNEW he had in him and had always wanted to give, and he gave that performance of his Life (we were so glad he didn’t “Die Before He Get Old” for Honeybee and I to have yet another of our Moments).
Our LAST concert was March 7, right before concerts went away, when we watched Michael Stanley Strike Up the Band One FINAL Time from the first row of the orchestra pit (if Honeybee and I never see another concert together, that was a Moment I’ll be happy to go out on).
People
The people who have crossed Honeybee’s and my Path, and walked with us for a while, demonstrate some SERIOUS “strength through diversity”.
Honeybee and I have yet to find people we don’t like (other than rude hurtful people, of course), and we have socialized across the entire social spectrum. We’ve gone out to dinner with couples who were having their version of our “smothered chicken”, we’ve joked with billionaires over which loge they watched the baseball team they own, we’ve watched Super Bowls and NBA Finals with hoop friends from pick-up games on the playground, we’ve plot doctored books and had the authors dedicate the book to us in thanks, etc.
Many interrelated circles of friends grew around the Honeybee Team Supreme, we had friends of all sorts. Honeybee and I struggled to figure out if we could fit TWO days at home a week into our social callendar.
Look around
We made a garden of the love we found
So many reasons I would fight to stay
You're the courage when I fade
Take a look at what we've made
Marriage
In 1996, I was working on our finances, and I shared with Honeybee that we would save about $3,000 if we were married, she got one of those looks of hers on her face, and I asked “Do you want to?” Not the most romantic or greatest of proposals, but she accepted anyway.
That great group of friends we assembled came together and threw us a FABULOUS Wedding, a bit Fandango style. We did everything backwards, a formal brunch followed by the ceremony in a beautiful rose garden. The reception was at a friends’ house, and then the after-reception of pizza and beer at yet another friends’ house around the block. Special people who shared a special day with us.
Missing were any rings. Honeybee is VERY particular about jewelry. She doesn’t like men wearing jewelry, so I have NEVER worn a wedding ring, at her request. As for her rings, at the time we could not justify the Engagement Ring she wanted, a 1 ½ carat emerald cut ring. I promised that ring to Honeybee, and she will have it, even if I have to give it to her at the finalization of the divorce as a “Thank you for having BEEN my wife” Ring rather than an Engagement Ring.
That silly ring, it wasn't meant to be
Luckily you saw in me
Something I couldn't see
”My Mind Is Gone, Is It EVER Coming Back!?!”
In late 2003, we succeeded in becoming pregnant with our first Babybee. The Collaboration we had been Planning and Loving toward had reached a new stage. still remember making special note of one of those Moments with Honeybee in early 2004 when we were Pregnant with our son. I brought her breakfast in bed (coffee for decades was standard, with extras like breakfast often added), and found her crying. I asked in a panic what was wrong, and Honeybee sobbed out, “My Mind is gone, is it EVER coming back!?!” All these strange Feelings and Emotions were taking over her Mind and Body, and she could tell that she was changing and becoming different than she had been before we got Pregnant.
I laughed and explained to her that those changes were her Body and Mind changing to give Birth to Babybee and become a Mommybee. I said that those changes were going to be in place until we decided to stop having children and breastfeeding, which was planned after our second child in about 5 years. That brought more tears from Honeybee and more laughter from me.
I NEVER should have been laughing, because I was horribly wrong about her Mind returning in 5 years. That wonderful incredible beautiful Mind she had shared with me for almost 20 years NEVER returned to what she shared with me before getting pregnant.
I NOW see the Moment of which I made that special note was NOT simply one of those tender Husband/Wife Moments that they look back on fondly (as Honeybee and I did so many times with this Moment, each of which now carries a touch of ash to me). No, this was the Honeybee I met in 1987, that incredible brilliant beautiful young woman to whom I instantly Bonded and Loved, with whom I started “officially” cohabiting in 1990, sweated out Midwest winters with windows open on a third floor of a Victorian house turned into a VERY cheap apartment (we did go out to dinner once a week for smothered chicken for under $20 total, tip included), packed every single one of our belongings into the back of a U-Haul to drive a thousand miles without a CLUE of where we were going to Live in 1993 (at once the Greatest and most Foolish thing we EVER did), started a business based on sharing my Love with others, launched her career and proudly watched her climb the corporate ladder saying “Farewell” to me, HER Honeybee
The Honeybee I Knew and Loved was actually saying “Goodbye” to me, and I didn’t Know it. I didn’t realize that my Honeybee I had Known and Loved for 16 years was leaving me, and from then on gradually my Loving Partner Honeybee would being replaced one tiny piece at a time by Mommybee, who does NOT Love me (or even understand I’m human) and sees me only as a resource for our Babybees.
I NEVER should have laughed, I should have been crying right alongside her. Now, I’ll be doing a LOT of crying not by her side waving Goodbye to my wonderful Honeybee in the Past who left me all those many years ago, but I never Knew she had gone. I’ve got a LOT of mourning to catch up on.
I’m giving you a horribly belated Goodbye now, Honeybee.
I’ve missed you so very much, especially these last few years. I’ve been so terribly Lost and Lonely without you (Mommybee abandoned our Discussion years ago, and you’ve only chipped in every so often since). I’m sorry I didn’t give you a proper Goodbye at the Time, but I didn’t Know you were going away Forever. We BOTH thought you were coming back. I didn’t even Know you were still Gone until last month. I really didn’t, Honeybee. Honest.
Such a fool
I took your love and I bent all the rules
You took the blow and didn't let it show
Stuck around to let me know
Built a family of our own
Male Light and Female Void
How could the Honeybee Team Supreme have missed such a crucial element, which eventually derailed their entire Plan? The answer is found in a VERY strange place.
Honeybee and I enjoyed exploring some of the most obscure areas of Reality in hope of finding Art and Artists. One of the most UNIQUE and GREATEST examples of Art we EVER found was the comic series Cerebus done by Dave Sim. IMO, Cerebus is the Finnegan’s Wake of comics and Sim is hands down the greatest living comic Artist. Sim’s 26 years of constant work on Cerebus produced that Artistic Alchemy where the Art and the Artist merge (which Sim later takes religious and visionary, producing an even MORE idiosyncratic work).
For all their magnificence, Sim and Cerebus are marred by what is a fatal flaw in most people’s eyes: Sim does not think or believe the genders are equal, and expresses his views in a strangely ham-fisted way which regularly melts down.
Honeybee and I LOVED extracting those parts which were Outrageous, and those parts which Sim had hit Truth (he has HUGE amounts of BOTH). Sometimes Outrageous and Truth were the same, as often happens in Art.
Here’s a summary of Sim’s system:
The Thinking Reasoning Male Light is Seminal Energy, while the Feeling Emotional Female Void is an Omnivorous Parasite.
The Male Light and Female Void can be combined by marriage into a Merged Permanence, with the components now called Merged Light and Merged Void. When Kids come Merged Light becomes Family Man.
All these Voids can be combined into a “Greater Void Wife and Kids” Omnivorous Engine, which serves the Vaginal Bottom Line. The Omnivorous Engine drives society through Lesser Void of White Collar Make-Work Programs.
The Female Void is essentially a black hole of resource need “For the Kids”, based on an Emotional and Feeling level. The Male Light cannot win on the Thinking and Reason level, as those are higher.
Many people see Sim’s Female Void as an Evil Woman, and dismiss him as a misogynist.
I’ve stripped as much of Sim’s “Simness” out of his system as I can. Here are some original sources for those who wish to read for themselves (insert all trigger warnings here): Male Light and Female Void, Reads, Tangents.
Mommybee
The Honeybee Team Supreme’s mistake is to think we were already a Merged Permanence which had avoided the Female Void issue. Honeybee is a Brilliant and Conscious woman, NOT a Female Void. We had been the Honeybee Team Supreme for almost 20 years, and no Female Void issues. We Knew the Female Void existed, but we thought we had the Female Void beat.
We were wrong. We were messing with Mother Nature, and it’s NOT nice to mess with Mother Nature.
We had not anticipated Mommybee being a Female Void and slowly robbing Honeybee of her Consciousness, leaving only Mommybee the Feeling Female Void.
When I joked with Honeybee when we were pregnant with our first Babybee, I had a general idea of the process, but the parts I missed were crucial. Emotion, Feeling, and Thought are progressive levels of abstraction, and the higher rests on the lower, with Thought supported by Feeling supported by Emotion.
My wonderful Conscious Honeybee had those three perfectly balanced, but when we got pregnant, Mommybee the Female Void which needs to provide for her Babybees ABOVE ALL ELSE disrupted her balance and Mommybee started to take over for Honeybee. As long as Honeybee and Mommybee agreed, all was well, but if they disagreed, Mommybee would win with Feeling and degrade Honeybee’s Consciousness a piece more.
I had NO idea that Mommybee was doing this until last month, so I kept executing the Plan which Honeybee and I had developed over 20 years. When Mommybee would criticize me and overrule me, I thought that was Honeybee, so I would try to Reason with her, explain that I was doing as we had Planned. Mommybee, the Female Void, saw Reason as a THREAT to her Babybees, and fought Honeybee’s Reason, and Honeybee played the rope in a Tug of War between me and Mommybee over her Babybees (a war I had NO CLUE was happening).
I am horrified that I was DESTROYING Honeybee when I was trying to follow the Plan the Honeybee Team Supreme had decided years earlier. But this Tug of War has been going on for 16 years, and Mommybee is clearly in control, with only little glimpses of Honeybee surfacing every so often.
Honeybee has lost her Consciousness, leaving Mommybee in charge until Mommybee can stop worrying so much because the Babybees are fully raised. That’s another five to ten years of Mommybee before there is much chance of Honeybee returning on a regular basis.
MAYBE.
What If?
Neither Honeybee nor I knew that us finally having the children to whom we so looked forward and had planned and worked for 15 years would unleash Mommybee and set in motion a process that eventually stole my Honeybee from me just like Alzheimer’s had taken my mother, one piece of her fabulous Mind disappearing at a Time until that incredible woman I Love so greatly was unrecognizable and GONE.
But if we HAD Known, would we have changed things (I would have changed how much I appreciated those days with just me and Honeybee, and then been prepared to adjust to Mommybee rather than blindsided)?
Other than being forewarned that Honeybee was going to transform into Mommybee, and preparing for that change, I don’t think there’s ANYTHING we would have done differently. Honeybee wanted me for her Love, her Partner, and the Father of her Babybees. She would have been incomplete without her Babybees, and I would NEVER want her incomplete for me to selfishly spend more Time with Honeybee, regardless of the Pain fulfilling our Dream of Babybees has caused me. Neither of us would have wanted anyone else to be the Father of her Babybees.
And I would never trade a Moment I got to spend with Honeybee for all the Pain and Suffering which Mommybee later inflicted upon me.
Soulmates
While Honeybee and I are Lifelong Loves, I thought for certain that we were also Soulmates, Ride together until one Dies, just like my parents with my father adding months to my mother’s Life through sheer force of Will and an eyedropper to feed her (and expert medical and legal skillz). In retrospect, I really should have paid MUCH more attention to how much Honeybee enjoyed For No One by the Beatles (she’s NEVER “needed” me, our Team Supreme was based on “Love” and “want”, NOT “need”) and the precedent of HER parent’s marriage, who separated and divorced when Honeybee and her brother were the same ages as our Babybees.
While Honeybee intended to be my Soulmate, Mommybee is NOT my Soulmate, she is a Female Void who has slowly taken over my Honeybee, one piece at a time.
Mommybee wants all my Resources and me to be happy just handing them over. I disagree, and that provokes Mommybee to attack me as if her Babybees’ Lives depend on it. Our differing POVs on this point DESPERATELY needs to be solved, but no solution is “pretty”.
Babybees
When I look at the Babybees which Honeybee and I Planned, Worked, and Loved so very hard to bring into Reality, I see that our efforts exceeded even our wildest Dreams. Our Babybees are absolutely spectacular, even more beautiful and brilliant than Honeybee and I could have ever Hoped. They are each special in their own ways, taking after Honeybee and I, yet adding their own unique spin. I could not be more proud of myself, Honeybee, Mommybee, and the Babybees in making this Collaboration a such a roaring success.
There will be NO Cat’s in the Cradle for me. I was with my Babybees CONSTANTLY with only a few hours off at a time until Mommybee decided to leave with our Babybees last month. I will always know that I was there during ALL their important formative years, because I’ve changed more diapers, driven to more sporting events, spent fewer days away from the Babybees, etc.
I even added my own new special touch to their education, riffing off Socrates, and taking his method to the next level. Instead of me focusing on pouring information and knowledge into our Babybees Minds by using questions to teach THEM, I let them teach ME their next lesson while I “played dumb”. This allowed me to focus their teaching attention at the exact point they needed to Know next, while giving them great confidence in their abilities to observe Reality and draw proper conclusions. I have helped them assemble models of Reality unlike ANY before them, totally unique and custom fit to THEM in new ways they found for themselves.
I look forward to the great Paths that will unfold before them. Those Paths will be Magickal and Marvelous. These Babybees of Honeybee and mine are truly special.
I just REALLY wish Honeybee and I could celebrate them. Or that I could celebrate them with Mommybee and our Babybees, rather than just watch their magnificent glory from a distance, which is what I anticipate happening.
But here we are
After all the messes and confessions
To the scars
That we never really owned as ours
One First Date
So, what’s next for me?
I’m going to Disneyworld, of course. What else would make any sense?
My Plan is to try and see what, if ANY, health dynamic might begin to be established between Mommybee and myself, now that I realize I am no longer married to Honeybee. Some sort of effective dynamic needs to be established because I’m going to be co-parenting with Mommybee for years, regardless of anything else.
Mommybee has agreed to take a day off her very important job (it really is, I’m very proud of how fantastically Honeybee/Mommybee’s career has progressed and I’m proud of the bits of help I’ve given her here and there, she’s a truly incredible woman) and leave the Babybees at her home so the the two of us can have a CHANCE to spend a day at Disneyworld as a couple like we we used to decades ago (the entire family tried a few weeks ago and didn’t make it long).
But I also have a Hope.
I’ve asked Mommybee to stay at her home with the Babybees this time and let me have the day with Honeybee.
I’m counting this as that “First Date” Honeybee and I always joked about NEVER having. At this point, I just want one day and one date with Honeybee, and this might be the LAST and ONLY chance I ever have.
I’m going to try and have a Moment with Honeybee and tell her how much I Miss her and I Love her. I Know now not to use those Facts and Logic which Honeybee Loves so much, but Mommybee despises when they conflict with her and her Babybees’ desires. I’ll focus on all those great Feeling and Emotions Honeybee and I had in the Past (and there were SO very many, and they were SO very great).
I’ll NEVER be able to fit all I want to say to Honeybee into a single Moment, even if we manage to stretch that Moment the entire day. But there is one thing I ABSOLUTELY WILL tell Honeybee.
“You’re the one. You’re the ONLY one.”
She’s my Honeybee, and I am her Honeybee.
She’s the Bestest Lifelong Love EVER.
For Crying Out Loud, I Love you, Honeybee.
And if our world comes tumbling down
I never could forgive myself for leaving out
You're the one
You are the only one
Won't you decide?
Won't you decide?
I want you to soar
Don't doubt anymore
(Little by little, we meet in the middle)
Won't you decide?
(What's your name?)
Won't you decide?
Snippet Playlist Alone Again, Naturally – Gilbert O’Sullivan Always on Your Side – Sheryl Crow, Sting Breakeven – The Script Circles – Post Malone Don’t Speak – No Doubt Far Away – Nickelback Happier – Marshmallo Here Come Those Tears Again – Jackson Browne Here’s Where the Story Ends – Sundays How’s It Gonna Be – Third Eye Blind In My Life – Beatles It’s All Coming Back to Me – Meatloaf My Immortal – Evanescence Rainy Days and Mondays – Carpenters The Reason – Hoobastank Reelin’ in the Years – Steely Dan She’s Gone – Hall and Oates Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word – Elton John Traces – Classics IV True – Spandau Ballet When We Were Young – Adele Winner Takes It All – ABBA Wonderwall – Oasis
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2020.07.27 12:45 27JJulbarium How to Find Someone on a Da-ting We-bsite ?

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https://preview.redd.it/v20i8w96qdd51.jpg?width=271&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=357812e6b83502e17890bcb0d9b0142889e27045
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2020.07.22 20:59 Po_Biotic Jackie Carzano, Sparkshot

Jackie Carzano, Sparkshot

"History is made by those who refuse to tread the beaten path. It is the reason people will remember me and not you."
Theme Song: Fury of the Storm
Date of Birth: June 25th, 1996
Appearance: Jackie originally had black hair and green eyes, but after her incident with a lightning bolt, Jackie's hair has turned a much lighter shade her eyes are now bright gold. She sports a scar in the shape of a Lichtenberg pattern on her right arm and stands around 5'5.
Mentality: Extremely confident in her own abilities. Jackie tends to takes actions that she deems necessary but would ruin any public perception of her and tarnish her family's reputation. So she takes care to hide her identity when dealing with more sensitive matters. However, she is quite public about her standard hero persona and does not hide her face. Her success has been great enough that most law enforcement turns a blind eye to her vigilantism.
Background:
A dual American-Italian citizen. Jackie has some Japanese heritage, which is what she uses to justify learning Japanese and her massive weeb-side. Jackie's father was at one point Italy's ambassador to the US. Even after his stint was over, Jackie's mother, an American citizen by birth, elected to stay in American with her kids, Jackie and Ryan, while their father returned to Italy to serve as a political consultant and run his businesses.
The night of the White Event, Jackie was out with friends when a freak storm came out of nowhere. Despite getting to cover, the storm seemed to follow the group. Eventually, the pavilion they were under was ripped up from the ground and a bolt of lightning flashed.
When everyone realized what happened, Jackie's arm was in massive pain and her hair had a new color to it.
Since then, Jackie has returned to her normal life, but she has also spent more than a bit of her time in Italy dealing with much of the corruption there surrounding her father's businesses.
Base of Operations: Italy/California/DC
Alignment: What would Jackie do?
Tier: Gamma

Skills

Adept in kickboxing and sojutsu. Taken a few HEMA courses.
Jackie has degrees in political science and physics, and is currently in law school online. She has experience lobbying in both the US and Italy. She has a lot of knowledge on Italian and Roman history, and could talk your ear off about Japan history, though the majority of this comes from Wikipedia and youtube videos.
Jackie speaks fluent English and Italian, and she is conversational in Japanese and Russian.

Equipment/Resources

Jackie has a net worth of $3 million. The majority of it comes from stealing from the mob. The rest comes from her "allowance" for helping people in Italy deal with corrupt businessmen and politicians.
She owns a brownstone in Washington DC and a high rise apartment/office in Los Angeles
Jackie owns both a katana and Italian rapier made out of tungsten carbide that she occasionally uses for hero related events, but they don't work super well with her powers, so they typically serve as wall decorations.
Jackie has two dozen, 2-kg Tungston needles she keeps on her person in case she is caught off gaurd without ferrofluid.

Powers

Symbiotic Parasite

Jackie has a parasitic organ bonded to her heart, spine, and the majority of her nervous system. This organ allows her to generate electricity and a highly conductive organic material similar in nature to ferrofluid.
This ferrofluid is matte black by default but can alter its reflection of light to anywhere along the visible spectrum. It has a density of 2000 kg/m3. Jackie can produce 150 kg per second and it shares her durability. Once it leaves her body, it will rapidly decompose unless Jackie maintains a charge through it. When a sufficient charge is placed through the ferrofluid, it can act as a solid.

Altered Physiology

Jackie can see all wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation. Her eyes can also perceive electric and magnetic fields.
Because of her parasite, Jackie is resistant or immune to most natural forms of poison and toxins. She is also highly resistant to radiation.
So long as Jackie's brain remains mostly intact, and the organ surrounding Jackie's heart remains functional, it can heal Jackie from nearly all injuries by building a body from ferrofluid and slowly mutating it into human flesh over the course of several hours.
Durability Type Unphased Tank Stagger Knockdown KO Other
Energy >100 kJ 100 kJ - 10 MJ 10 MJ - 12.5 MJ 12.5 MJ - 15 MJ 15 MJ - 30 MJ
Thermal -175o F - 650o F (158-616 K) 15 times resistant to thermal change, Flesh burns begin at 1000o F (810 K).
Energy Density 225 kJ/mm2 (285 on armor)
Crushing/Ripping >10 tons 10-30 tons 30-80 tons 80-120 tons 120-180 tons
Lifting Strength Striking Energy
25 tons 450 kJ
Flight Speed Foot Speed Combat Speed Reactions
320 m/s, 100 meters from combat speed 100 m/s 172 m/s 10 ms

Electricity Generation and Manipulation

Jackie's organ generates electricity at a rate of 425 MW, but can front this in bursts, up to 17 MJ bursts, 25 times a second. Jackie can store up to 2 GJ of electricity in her body. The electricity that is stored in her body can be dumped in charges up to 20 MJ, 30 times a second.
Jackie produces an EM-like field that extends in a 250-meter radius around her.
Within this field, she can detect electric fields, magnetic fields, and EMR. This is accurate to +/- 1.5 Watts. Once every 30 seconds, Jackie can deliver an EMP that can take out something on par with a back-up generator for a manufacturing plant. Every second, she can take out the equivalent of a cell phone, laptop, or security camera.
Within 25 meters of Jackie, she has control of magnetism that allows her to manipulate up to 12 tons of materials at speeds of 75 m/s. While she can only move 12 tons, she can exert 80 tons of force with this power.
The field protects Jackie from telepaths if she wishes. Telepaths who attempt to read her mind while within the field will feel as if they've been shocked by Jackie's full power. This is on by default.
Jackie is capable of changing the electrical potential of air and her ferrofluid, allowing her to effectively redirect the path electricity will take when arcing in open air. When she sets one of these paths, they remain in place for a minute or until she dismisses them. She can have up to ten created at once. A path takes 5 ms to form. These paths can also be used as a guide for her railguns. She can additionally change the potential of metal she is in contact with.
Jackie can solidify the electricity she creates in order to act as a shield. The electric shield can be up to 3 feet on a side and can block incoming energy that hits it. The energy it uses to block is drawn from Jackie's organ and when the organ cannot produce the energy to block something, it passes through the electricity. Once the shield has been deployed, Jackie cannot solidify electricity again until her organ has a second refill its charge.
Jackie's can use turn herself into a functional super magnet to fly.
Because of the electricity in her body, cameras detect Jackie as a static mass. This mass is recorded, but there's no identifying data of Jackie from the recordings.
Jackie can use her electrical bursts or continuous output as a form of offensive. This can be released from anywhere on her body on contact, or as a ranged weapon that can fire up to 150 meters feet at 343 m/s. These can either be electrical in nature or solidified kinetic lightning.
Heavy usage of her powers in an area can summon sudden thunderstorms, although this onset is not fast enough to provide her any help in dealing with most fights.

Railgun

Jackie can fire the ferrofluid from her body using a similar method to a gauss gun.
These projectiles are fed from the energy her body produces. The ferrofluid has limits on charge and mass that can go into a shot before it breaks down due to strange physics.
One of Jackie's standard railguns weighs 73 kg and fire at mach 2. Jackie can up this speed to mach 3.5, but the ferrofluid can only maintain a solid form of 24 kg in such a case.
Jackie can allocate the charge for a railgun and then hold it to charge up several railguns and dump them all at the same time. She can effectively hold 15 maximum powered shots before she must release one. However, she can hold over 100 charges of weaker shots as long as their total power doesn't exceed her standard limit. Charges can only be held for 45 seconds before they dissipate.
By manipulating residual electricity in the ferrofluid, Jackie can redirect each shot up to four times each, with no more than a 90-degree redirection on each shot. Shots redirect over the course of a meter. A shot that is redirected slows to mach 2 if moving faster.

EM Transmission

By concentrating, Jackie can feel the paths of electrical lines and currents to map them. With 10 ms of concentration, she can travel up to 10 kilometers along an electrical path to another open point on the point. She can do this once every second.
She is able to pick up on, identify, and understand all electronic communication and information in her field. This is not passive and she must be concentrating to actually view the information. Jackie's symbiotic organ is capable of breaking most common encryption protocols.
Notes:
  • When dumping charge into a railgun, Jackie's flight speed is limited to combat speed.
  • If she isn't physically carrying the ferrofluid when flying with railguns around her, her top speed is effectively 75 m/s.
  • Piercing on Railguns can't go above Jackie's own piercing durability.
  • KE on railguns is calced using relative speed.
  • Electricity can't jump from Jackie's skin to another object/person until a few ms after contact.
  • Jackie cannot charge her own storage.

Feats

General Feats
  • Shot out ferrofluid a line of ferrofluid as a railgun but kept it in a line toward her so she can restrain a meta and reel them in.
  • With well-placed EMPs and railguns shots to power stations, Jackie blacked a major part of a large city.
  • Can breathe if she has access to water by splitting the oxygen and hydrogen atoms.
  • Pulled an engine out of a moving truck, turned it into a railgun, and used it to derail a nearby train.
  • So long as her railguns stay in her "EM" field, she can use the field to prevent any shockwaves they make as well as the shockwaves created by her own flight.
  • Has solidified ferrofluid to act as a spear and used the power of the railgun for melee strikes with it.
  • Can use ferrofluid and electricity as speakers.
Symbiotic Parasite
  • Has hidden her identity when doing suspect activities by forming a suit of ferrofluid armor and changing its pattern and color.
  • When physically connected to the ferrofluid, Jackie can project her senses through it.
  • Sold a sample of the ferrofluid to a lab for testing and had it decompose after she was paid.
  • Has shaped her armor and been able to alter her voice through the ferrofluid to make people believe she is a man.
Altered Physiology
  • Botox and ricin are incapable of effecting her body.
  • Drank a spiked drink with no issues.
  • Spotted a robot disguised as a human by electromagnetic radiation they gave off.
  • Her eyes are sensitive enough to UV and IR light to see with those sources alone.
  • Read a person's lips from 300 meters away.
  • Can process images with minimal light.
Electricity Generation and Manipulation
  • Touched Gamma Mr. Brick and killed him with 5 seconds of continuous electrical discharge.
  • Prevented a 85 tonner from moving by shocking them.
  • Her EM field is sensitive enough to detect the presence of people in it, but not enough to judge body orientation from it.
  • A telepath who was incapable of reading Jackie's thoughts tried getting closer. The moment they stepped into her field, they felt like they were shocked. This caused no damage but pain.
Railgun
  • With the aid of another meta who gave her targeting coordinates, Jackie obliterated a bunker several over the horizon with her railguns.
  • Annihilated a tank with two shots.
  • Took out a Russian PMC group with 100 shots fired at the battalion.
  • Fired a Tungston needle as a railgun. The shot hit mach 3.5 and was capable of piercing through an MRAP.
  • Dumped a full charge into a railgun, then split that railgun into several smaller pieces to be fired as scattershot.
  • A railgun pieced clean through both sides of the haul of a cargo ship.
  • When out of ferrofluid, Jackie grabbed a nearby hunk of metallic salt and used it as a railgun projectile.
  • Formed an 80 kg railgun that hit mach 2 and was able to control, but she had to use part of a second burst to charge it.
  • Using electricity stored within her body, Jackie formed an 85 kg railgun that she was able to fire at 686 m/s. Past this point, either ferrofluid or speed started to be dumped.
EM Transmission
  • Made it from DC to San Diego in under ten minutes.
  • Can listen to the radio from anywhere.
  • Can speak over specific radio frequencies that she knows.
Stories and Events:
#1 A Slavic Problem
#2 Daddy's Little Girl
submitted by Po_Biotic to WWWVerse [link] [comments]


2020.07.20 01:03 Po_Biotic I hate gordon

Jackie Carzano, Sparkshot

"History is made by those who refuse to tread the beaten path. It is the reason people will remember me and not you."
Theme Song: Fury of the Storm
Date of Birth: June 25th, 1996
Appearance: Jackie originally had black hair and green eyes, but after her incident with a lightning bolt, Jackie's hair has turned a much lighter shade her eyes are now bright gold. She sports a scar in the shape of a Lichtenberg pattern on her right arm and stands around 5'5.
Mentality: Extremely confident in her own abilities. Jackie tends to takes actions that she deems necessary but would ruin any public perception of her and tarnish her family's reputation. So she takes care to hide her identity when dealing with more sensitive matters. However, she is quite public about her standard hero persona and does not hide her face. Her success has been great enough that most law enforcement turns a blind eye to her vigilantism.
Background:
A dual American-Italian citizen. Jackie has some Japanese heritage, which is what she uses to justify learning Japanese and her massive weeb-side. Jackie's father was at one point Italy's ambassador to the US. Even after his stint was over, Jackie's mother, an American citizen by birth, elected to stay in American with her kids, Jackie and Ryan, while their father returned to Italy to serve as a political consultant and run his businesses.
The night of the White Event, Jackie was out with friends when a freak storm came out of nowhere. Despite getting to cover, the storm seemed to follow the group. Eventually, the pavilion they were under was ripped up from the ground and a bolt of lightning flashed.
When everyone realized what happened, Jackie's arm was in massive pain and her hair had a new color to it.
Since then, Jackie has returned to her normal life, but she has also spent more than a bit of her time in Italy dealing with much of the corruption there surrounding her father's businesses.
Base of Operations: Italy/California/DC
Alignment: What would Jackie do?
Tier: Gamma

Skills

Adept in kickboxing and sojutsu. Taken a few HEMA courses.
Jackie has a degree in political science and physics. She has experience lobbying in both the US and Italy. She has a lot of knowledge on Italian and Roman history, and could talk your ear off abut Japan history, though the majority of this comes from Wikipedia and youtube videos.
Jackie speaks fluent English and Italian, and she is conversational in Japanese and Russian.

Equipment/Resources

Jackie has a networth of $2 million. The majority of it comes from a cache of money she stole from a mafia storehouse. The rest comes from her "allowance" for helping people in Italy deal with corrupt businessmen and politicians.
She owns a brownstone in Washington DC and an apartment in San Diego
Jackie owns both a katana and Italian rapier made out of tungsten carbide that she occasionally uses for hero related events, but they don't work super well with her powers, so they typically serve as wall decorations.
Jackie has two dozen, 2-kg Tungston needles she keeps on her person in case she is caught off gaurd without ferrofluid.

Powers

Symbiotic Parasite

Jackie has a parasitic organ bonded to her heart, spine, and the majority of her nervous system. This organ allows her to generate electricity and a highly conductive organic material similar in nature to ferrofluid.
This ferrofluid is matte black by default but can alter its reflection of light to anywhere along the visible spectrum. It has a density of 2000 kg/m3. Jackie can produce 150 kg per second and it shares her durability. Once it leaves her body, it will rapidly decompose unless Jackie maintains a charge through it. When a sufficient charge is placed through the ferrofluid, it can act as a solid.

Altered Physiology

Jackie can see all wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation. Her eyes can also perceive electric and magnetic fields.
Because of her parasite, Jackie is resistant or immune to most natural forms of poison and toxins. She is also highly resistant to radiation.
So long as Jackie's brain remains mostly intact, and the organ surrounding Jackie's heart remains functional, it can heal Jackie from nearly all injuries by building a body from ferrofluid and slowly mutating it into human flesh over the course of several hours.
Durability Type Unphased Tank Stagger Knockdown KO Other
Energy >100 kJ 100 kJ - 10 MJ 10 MJ - 12.5 MJ 12.5 MJ - 15 MJ 15 MJ - 30 MJ
Thermal -175o F - 650o F (158-616 K) 15 times resistant to thermal change, Flesh burns begin at 1000o F (810 K).
Energy Density 225 kJ/mm2 (285 on armor)
Crushing/Ripping >10 tons 10-30 tons 30-80 tons 80-120 tons 120-180 tons
Lifting Strength Striking Energy
25 tons 450 kJ
Flight Speed Foot Speed Combat Speed Reactions
320 m/s, 100 meters from combat speed 100 m/s 172 m/s 10 ms

Electricity Generation and Manipulation

Jackie's organ generates electricity at a rate of 425 MW, but can front this in bursts, up to 17 MJ bursts, 25 times a second. Jackie can store up to 2 GJ of electricity in her body. The electricity that is stored in her body can be dumped in charges up to 20 MJ, 30 times a second.
Jackie produces an EM-like field that extends in a 250-meter radius around her.
Within this field, she can detect electric fields, magnetic fields, and EMR. This is accurate to +/- 1.5 Watts. Once every 30 seconds, Jackie can deliver an EMP that can take out something on par with a back-up generator for a manufacturing plant. Every second, she can take out the equivalent of a cell phone, laptop, or security camera.
Within 25 meters of Jackie, she has control of magnetism that allows her to manipulate up to 12 tons of materials at speeds of 75 m/s. While she can only move 12 tons, she can exert 80 tons of force with this power.
The field protects Jackie from telepaths if she wishes. Telepaths who attempt to read her mind while within the field will feel as if they've been shocked by Jackie's full power. This is on by default.
Jackie is capable of changing the electrical potential of air and her ferrofluid, allowing her to effectively redirect the path electricity will take when arcing in open air. When she sets one of these paths, they remain in place for a minute or until she dismisses them. She can have up to ten created at once. A path takes 5 ms to form. These paths can also be used as a guide for her railguns. She can additionally change the potential of metal she is in contact with.
Jackie can solidify the electricity she creates in order to act as a shield. The electric shield can be up to 3 feet on a side and can block incoming energy that hits it. The energy it uses to block is drawn from Jackie's organ and when the organ cannot produce the energy to block something, it passes through the electricity. Once the shield has been deployed, Jackie cannot solidify electricity again until her organ has a second refill its charge.
Jackie's can use turn herself into a functional super magnet to fly.
Because of the electricity in her body, cameras detect Jackie as a static mass. This mass is recorded, but there's no identifying data of Jackie from the recordings.
Jackie can use her electrical bursts or continuous output as a form of offensive. This can be released from anywhere on her body on contact, or as a ranged weapon that can fire up to 150 meters feet at 343 m/s. These can either be electrical in nature or solidified kinetic lightning.
Heavy usage of her powers in an area can summon sudden thunderstorms, although this onset is not fast enough to provide her any help in dealing with most fights.

Railgun

Jackie can fire the ferrofluid from her body using a similar method to a gauss gun.
These projectiles are fed from the energy her body produces. The ferrofluid has limits on charge and mass that can go into a shot before it breaks down due to strange physics.
One of Jackie's standard railguns weighs 73 kg and fire at mach 2. Jackie can up this speed to mach 3.5, but the ferrofluid can only maintain a solid form of 24 kg in such a case.
Jackie can allocate the charge for a railgun and then hold it to charge up several railguns and dump them all at the same time. She can effectively hold 15 maximum powered shots before she must release one. However, she can hold over 100 charges of weaker shots as long as their total power doesn't exceed her standard limit. Charges can only be held for 45 seconds before they dissipate.
By manipulating residual electricity in the ferrofluid, Jackie can redirect each shot up to four times each, with no more than a 90-degree redirection on each shot. Shots redirect over the course of a meter. A shot that is redirected slows to mach 2 if moving faster.

EM Transmission

By concentrating, Jackie can feel the paths of electrical lines and currents to map them. With 10 ms of concentration, she can travel up to 10 kilometers along an electrical path to another open point on the point. She can do this once every second.
She is able to pick up on, identify, and understand all electronic communication and information in her field. This is not passive and she must be concentrating to actually view the information. Jackie's symbiotic organ is capable of breaking most common encryption protocols.
Notes:
  • When dumping charge into a railgun, Jackie's flight speed is limited to combat speed.
  • If she isn't physically carrying the ferrofluid when flying with railguns around her, her top speed is effectively 75 m/s.
  • Piercing on Railguns can't go above Jackie's own piercing durability.
  • KE on railguns is calced using relative speed.
  • Electricity can't jump from Jackie's skin to another object/person until a few ms after contact.
  • Jackie cannot charge her own storage.

Feats

General Feats
  • Shot out ferrofluid a line of ferrofluid as a railgun but kept it in a line toward her so she can restrain a meta and reel them in.
  • With well placed EMPs and railguns shots to power stations, Jackie blacked a major part of a large city.
  • Can breathe if she has access to water by splitting the oxygen and hydrogen atoms.
  • Pulled an engine out of a moving truck, turned it into a railgun, and used it to derail a nearby train.
  • Has solidified ferrofluid to act as a spear and used the power of the railgun for melee strikes with it.
  • Can use ferrofluid and electricity as speakers.
Symbiotic Parasite
  • Has hidden her identity when doing suspect activities by forming a suit of ferrofluid armor and changing its pattern and color.
  • When physically connected to the ferrofluid, Jackie can project her senses through it.
  • Sold a sample of the ferrofluid to a lab for testing and had it decompose after she was paid.
  • Has shaped her armor and been able to alter her voice through the ferrofluid to make people believe she is a man.
Altered Physiology
  • Botox and ricin are incapable of effecting her body.
  • Drank a spiked drink with no issues.
  • Spotted a robot disguised as a human by electromagnetic radiation they gave off.
  • Her eyes are sensitive enough to UV and IR light to see with those sources alone.
  • Read a person's lips from 300 meters away.
  • Can process images with minimal light.
Electricity Generation and Manipulation
  • Touched Gamma Mr. Brick and killed him with 5 seconds of continuous electrical discharge.
  • Prevented a 85 tonner from moving by shocking them.
  • Her EM field is sensitive enough to detect the presence of people in it, but not enough to judge body orientation from it.
  • A telepath who was incapable of reading Jackie's thoughts tried getting closer. The moment they stepped into her field, they felt like they were shocked. This caused no damage but pain.
Railgun
  • With the aid of another meta, Jackie managed to aim and hit a bunker several miles away with her railguns.
  • Annihilated a tank with two shots.
  • Took out a Russian PMC group with 100 shots fired at the battalion.
  • Fired a Tungston needle as a railgun. The shot hit mach 3.5 and was capable of piercing through an MRAP.
  • Dumped a full charge into a railgun, then split that railgun into several smaller pieces to be fired as scattershot.
  • A railgun pieced clean through both sides of the haul of a cargo ship.
  • When out of ferrofluid, Jackie grabbed a nearby hunk of metallic salt and used it as a railgun projectile.
  • Formed an 80 kg railgun that hit mach 2 and was able to control, but she had to use part of a second burst to charge it.
  • Using electricity stored within her body, Jackie formed an 85 kg railgun that she was able to fire at 686 m/s. Past this point, either ferrofluid or speed started to be dumped.
EM Transmission
  • Made it from DC to San Diego in under ten minutes.
  • Can listen to the radio from anywhere.
  • Can speak to over specific radio frequencies that she knows.
  • Can breath if she has access to water by splitting the oxygen and hydrogen atoms.
Stories and Events:
#1 A Slavic Problem
submitted by Po_Biotic to PoBsPublicBox [link] [comments]


2020.07.17 05:32 Po_Biotic Awestruck

Galen Abbot, Awestruck

"If you don't like the hand you were dealt, just draw your own. Your life is your own to make."
Theme Song: Move - Thousand Foot Krutch
Date of Birth: May 9th, 1995 - 25
Appearance: Awestruck stands 6'1 and weighs 180 pounds. He is in good shape for constant exercise and dancing. He has medium-length, wavy brown hair that he normally keeps pushed back.
His normal clothing style is simple, neat, and stylish.
Mentality:
Awestruck carries himself proudly and is quite relaxed at most times, even in dangerous situations. He believes in his own power and it shows. While he doesn't leave himself open to attack, he does not show fear when in the presence of an enemy. He respects those stronger than him and does not look down on those weaker than him. He believes you need to be strong to advance in the world but does not believe it is necessary for survival, nor does he believe strength comes only comes in the form of powerful metahuman abilities. He knows strength can come from natural intelligence, charisma, or influence. He is more than willing to protect those that need it and believes all have the power deep within them to achieve greatness with enough effort.
Underneath Awestruck's confidence, willpower, and exuberant flair lies residual feelings of resentment and animosity towards those who act superior due to wealth, class status, or intelligence, and towards those who looked down on him in the past. He carries an overwhelming desire to prove himself and to fit into the world around him.
Background:
A kid born with nothing and no future. Galen's parents were drug-addicted, low-income retail clerks in Appalachia. He wasn't even one-year-old before he was taken by CPS. He was simply another statistic in the system for the majority of his life, bouncing around various foster homes and strict Catholic private schools, only to be moved again a few months later for a multitude of reasons, always out of his control. When the boy turned 13, he was visiting Washington DC on a school field trip and decided he'd try his hand at street performing for some money since actual spending money was never something he had and he wanted a souvenir to take back home. He managed to catch the attention of a music industry executive that night who offered Galen a chance to be a background dancer in music videos. After obtaining permission from his foster parents, Galen was allowed to start. He quickly established himself as someone who had potential and continued to get larger and larger positions. When he was 16, Galen had enough money saved up that allowed him to do what he had always wanted to do. Get the hell out of Appalachia. With what little money Galen he had, he got a tiny apartment in NYC and began working in the dance scene out there. He currently works as a choreographer when he isn't busy with side projects.
Base of Operations: NYC
Alignment: Hero
Tier: Gamma

Skills

Galen is an amateur with a long sword and is currently taking HEMA lessons. Additionally, he has two years of serious MMA lessons under his belt and is currently the level of a purple belt in BJJ.
He is near-fluent in classical Latin and Italian from his years of Catholic school.
Galen is a naturally talented dancer and has won more than a few school talent shows with his Michael Jackson impression. Related to his dancing abilities, Galen is a skilled free runner, has a good sense of balance, and is very flexible for a guy.

Equipment/Resources

A messer with a 1.2-meter blade.
Foldable Ka-Bar for when he's caught without his sword.
Galen has a sizeable savings accounts to his name and makes $85,000 a year from dancing.

Powers

Panache
Awestruck exudes style and flair. When he desires it, music and sound effects will accompany his actions. Mundane weather and natural surroundings are under his control so he can make an entrance and fight in style. He has a superhuman sense of how to strike a pose. His smile literally shines. His hair will blow in the non-existent breeze or remain in illogical positions without any gel. Sparks will fly off his weapons when he strikes something.
Jaw Dropper
When Awestruck staggers someone their mouth falls agape and cannot be closed until they recover from the stagger.
Energy Aura
Awestruck is constantly wreathed in an aura of his own internal energy which provides him with enhanced physicals. Additionally, there are several applications he has with this.
This aura is effectively bottomless, but Awestruck has a limit to what he can draw on at once. This is represented by a pool that has 75 points, which refreshes over the course of an hour.
Weapon Enhancement:
Awestruck's aura wraps weapons in his energy, raising their maximum piercing capability to 250 kJ/mm2 when combined with his own strength. His slashing capability is 80% as effective.
Weapons become heavily resistant to damage, able to take 5 MJ before starting to take damage, 10 MJ before minor damage, 25 MJ before major damage, and 40 MJ before absolute failure. Lower level attacks will build up damage over repeated strikes. A weapon's piercing defense is double that of their own cutting ability.
Offensive
Name Description Point Cost
Savior's Slash Awestruck's sword phases through targets he does not wish to cut for one attack. 3 points
Hordebreaker Unleashes a visible energy slash. Carries Awestruck's slashing property at first, but drops off linearly to 50% strength until the slash disappears at 50 meters. The slash is three meters wide but can but made smaller if desired. Moves at combat speed. 5 points
Backbiter A phantom strike mirrors Awestruck's attack behind him for one strike. 3 points
Split Vision A phantom strike horizontally mirrors Awestruck's attack in front of him for one strike. 6 points
Waxing Crescent Extends the effective cutting length of Awestruck's next attack to 2.5 meters for one strike. 3 points
Will Breaker Raises Awestruck's striking strength to 24 MJ or 400 kJ/mm2 for two strikes. Additionally, this ability can be used to negate/reduce the energy of an incoming attack up to its limit. Reducing a weaker strike uses a proportionally lower amount of energy. 10 points
Defensive
Name Description Point Cost
Shared Strength When Awestruck is in contact with people or objects he lift, he can selectively grant them his durability (cannot go above his). This can be chained. This ability costs no points but Awestruck can leave them wrapped in his aura after breaking contact. 3 points per 5 seconds. The amount of protection and its length can be weakened for a lower point cost.
Steadfast Raises Awestruck's personal durability to that of his sword for one attack and reduces his knockback to a maximum of one meter. 5 points
Supplementary
Name Description Point Cost
Foothold Allows Awestruck to use his own energy as a platform to maneuver on for 60 seconds. 3 points
Memento Mori As Awestruck makes an attack, the target receives a vision of their death should they try and block or tank the blow. This vision lasts for one of their reaction times. It does not work on the same person multiple times within 10 of their reaction cycles. This is a mental and sensory-based hallucinogenic effect. 15 points
All Seeing Aura Provides Awestruck with a 3D view and low powered telekinetic sense of the surrounding area out to 25 meters for 50 milliseconds. 3 points
Mirage Generates a visual and auditory illusion of Awestruck for 5 seconds which he can control. He can have one of these active at once and it can travel no more than 50 meters from himself. Can move at his combat speed. 15 points
Flicker 15-meter teleport. Does not carry momentum. 5 ms second delay. 3 points
Brutum Fulmen Awestruck's next five strikes will cause no physical harm to targets he chooses, only being able to knock them out and exhaust them if it would normally KO/kill. 5 points
Metabolic Burn Rapidly burns off Awestruck's energy in exchange for rapid healing. 75 points would regrow limbs. 50 points would heal a mortal wound, 45 points would close a deep gash. 50 points would close scrapes and heal bruises. 20 points would lower stagger damage taken down to unphased damage. This healing can be channeled onto someone in contact with Awestruck.
Absorption Restores 5 points for every creature Awestruck kills or knocks out. Passive
Physicals
Durability Type Unphased Tank Stagger Knockdown KO Other
Energy >100 kJ 100 kJ-15 MJ 15 MJ-25 MJ 25 MJ-28 MJ 28 MJ-37 MJ
Thermal -200o F - 800o F (144-700 K) 25 times resistant to thermal change, Flesh burns begin at 1250o F (950 K).
Energy Density 315 kJ/mm2
Crushing/Ripping >10 tons 10-50 tons 50-110 tons 110-190 tons 180-240 tons
Lifting Strength Striking Energy
120 tons 12 MJ
Foot Speed, Acceleration Distance Combat Speed Reactions
150 m/s 200 m/s 8 ms

Feats

Combined Will Breaker, Waxing Crescent, Split Vision, Brutum Fulmen, Memento Mori and Savior's Slash into one strike as a finishing blow, but exhausted a massive portion of his energy in the process.
Easily stalled a bank robber until the cops arrived then styled on the man for a good five minutes in front of an audience.
Walked up the side of a building with Foothold.
Mirage can be made to do anything Awestruck is normally capable of and can appear to use his abilities.
Mirage fooled a tactical based, telekinetic sense, but not actual physical inspection.
Cut a tank in half down the middle with Waxing Crescent
Ran through a metal ship without stopping or taking damage, caused the vessel to begin sinking.
Can see underwater and at night as well as during the day.
His Energy Aura and Panache can function in a way to conceal his identity when he fights.
submitted by Po_Biotic to WWWVerse [link] [comments]


2020.07.16 18:26 stannsmash Offseason Review Series: Day 2 - The Washington Football Team

Washington is dead, long live Washington!

Division: NFC East

2019 Record: 3-13, 4th in NFC East

Coaching Changes

As the marketing says, this is a new RivERA. Almost the entire coaching staff has been replaced, except for the running back and special teams coaches, so let's all give a hand to Randy Jordan and Nate Kaczor for being survivors of the Rivera purge. Here are the highlights:
 

Head Coach: Ron Rivera replaces interim Bill Callahan

After an 0-5 start last season, and multiple season of mediocrity, Dan Snyder finally decided to pull the plug on Jay Gruden. Interim coach Bill Callahan did a...job. The question quickly turned to who would be the newest coach of the Washington Football Franchise. Would it be current OC and potential wünderkid Kevin O'Connell? Would they somehow steal away Mike Tomlin (remember this theory?) No. Enter in: Riverboat Ron.
Ironically, the only way that Washington was able to hire him was by defeating him: in week 13 of the 2019 season, Adrian Peterson and Derrius Guice stomped through Rivera's defense to the tune of 248 yards on the ground. That was enough to seal his fate with owner David Tepper, who was vocal through the season about the panthers status of mediocrity.
While one can reflect on Rivera's tenure as mediocrity, I'd argue it is anything but. As 2-time Head Coach of the Year, Rivera lead the Panthers to 3 1st place finishes in the NFC South, including a historic 15-1 2015 season where the Panthers made it to the Super Bowl behind MVP Cam Newton. Rivera is the winningest coach in Panthers history, with an overall record of 76-63-1. However, he was not Tepper's choice, and for that as a fan I owe Tepper one.
While I would not fault Jay Gruden for all of the Redskins issues the past 5 1/2 years, he seemed destined to stay at most mediocre, never even reaching the highs Rivera has seen. Key Gruden personnel such as Kirk Cousins, Jordan Reed, Chris Thompson, Josh Norman, Josh Doctson, and more are long gone. Rivera has a brand new cast to work with, and I am excited to see it.
Rivera is a proven head coach with a long and public track record. He is known for being a big believer in a strong player-oriented team culture, and god knows this team needs some major culture help, especially in the front office. Looking at you, Mr. Snyder. GRADE: A
 

Offensive Coordinator: Scott Turner replaces Kevin O'Connell

Losing Kevin O'Connell to the Rams is disappointing, no way around it in my mind. Could the Rams get bitten in the rear and throw a green coordinator into the wind? Maybe. But out of all personnel we didn't keep, this one stung the most.
However, one must not dwell on the past too much. Enter in Scott Turner, son of Norv Turner. Turner comes over from Carolina where he was first the QB coach under his father, and then suddenly replaced his father once Rivera was fired. Some highlights of Turner include:
  • Being the Brown's receiver coach during Josh Gordon's monstrous 2013 season
  • Vikings QB coach during Teddy Bridgewater's best years
Yeah that's about it. He is young and hungry, and honestly, I am pretty happy with this choice as well. I have faith in him to develop Haskins, who is the future of the franchise as of now. Hopefully he does not fall out of favor as his father did with our favorite owner. GRADE: B+
 

Defensive Coordinator: Jack Del Rio replaces Greg Manusky

The Redskins defense in my opinion has been underwhelming in recent times, and in large part I blame Greg Manusky for this result. The Redskins defense last year ranked 27th overall, which any Washington fan will tell you is at best a slight shame and at worst a goddamn tragedy. Sure, our secondary was nowhere to be seen. Sure, we we're extremely injured a lot of the time.
But here's the worst part: our front 7 is actually really good. I mean come on: Jonathan Allen, Daron Payne, Matt Ioannidis, Ryan Kerrigan, Montez Sweat, and more should amount to one of the most potent QB rushing attacks of the year. However, the stats show that this is just not true. PFF listed us outside the top ten and in a more general sense the defense overall just seems too ooze mediocrity.
Enter in Jack Del Rio. This man has over 30 years of NFL experience, having multiple positions as both Head Coach and Defensive Coordinators in the past. While his head coaching career has not always been consistent, his defensive strengths are quite apparent. While Wade Phillips was responsible for the Super Bowl winning Broncos of 2015, we cannot forget that Del Rio groomed that defense for years prior, bringing them to the big game as well the year before. His earlier success in Baltimore and Carolina must also be mentioned, but my main point is this: Jack Del Rio is tiers above Manusky.
Del Rio and Rivera are on the same page, and switching to a 4-3 base defense with Del Rio should pay dividends to our defense, particularly our front seven. Look for a strong pass rush with Del Rio under control. GRADE: A
 

Quarterbacks Coach: Ken Zampese replaces Tim Rattay

Zampese formerly worked for the Greatest Show on Turf helping Kurt Warner, Isaac Bruce, and Torry Holt achieve offensive supremacy over the league. He worked for 12 years in Cincinnati, developing both Carson Palmer and Andy Dalton. In addition, he helped to develop Baker his rookie year under literal the dumpster fire of a head coaching regime Hue Jackson had in 2018. After seeing many of Haskins sexy throws to McLaurin, Gandy-Golden and Co. on Instagram, I feel some safety in the QB department for once. GRADE: A-
 

Head Athletic Trainer: Ryan Vermillion replaces Larry Hess

If there's one thing that reminds me of a Washington Football season, its injuries. While Washington was not the only injured team, it definitely felt like one of the worst last year. At the end of the day, the blame falls on random injury luck, proper practice, and the athletic training staff. Larry Hess had been employed by Washington for 17 years, so this move may be seen as a long time coming, especially concerning some of the particularly bad injuries of recent years.
Vermillion has rep with Rivera, as he is the former head trainer for the Panthers. While the Panthers have had some injury troubles of there own as of recently, I am still hopeful that Vermillion and his staff can help the situation over here. GRADE: B
 
 

Free Agency

Players lost/cut
Player Position New team
Chris Thompson RB Jaguars
Colt McCoy QB Giants
Case Keenum QB Browns
Ereck Flowers OG Dolphins
Josh Norman CB Bills
Trent Williams OT 49ers
Montae Nicholson CB UFA
Jordan Reed TE UFA
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie CB UFA
Wendell Smallwood RB UFA
Tony Bergstrom OL UFA
Donald Penn OT UFA
Vernon Davis TE Retired
Key Losses:
  • Ereck Flowers: Flowers had been written off as a bust. His tenure in New York and Jacksonville were both at best mediocre, and at worst disgusting. He gave up tons of pressures, and questions about his devotion to the team were at play. However, Washington was able to reignite Flowers by transitioning him from a tackle to a guard. In this new role, he only allowed two sacks while starting all 16 games. In the end, he was able to get the best pay-day back home in Miami, and for that I cannot hold any ill-will.
 
  • Josh Norman: 5 years. $51.1 million guaranteed. $75 million total. Honestly, I believed in Josh Norman when we first signed him. Coming off an All-Pro year on a stacked 2015 Panthers roster, Norman was proud to declare himself the best corner in the whole league. If you'd ask Norman today, he may still very well agree with that assessment. However, both the film and numbers point to Norman as a one year wonder. He was never able to replicate his 2015 success here, and was barely able to follow receivers like Revis or play the zone like Sherman. I would consider this the worst Redskins free agent signing of the Jay Gruden regime, hands down bar none. At least Matt Jones gave us some 100 yard games. His best games for us were against Cody Kessler and Matt Barkley. I am glad this is over with.
 
  • Trent Williams: Oh Trent-y boy, the pipes, the pipes are calling. I am truly sad to see Mr. Williams suit up for another organization this fall, assuming there will be a football season. Trent has been one of, if not the best offensive lineman in the entire NFL since being drafted 4th overall in 2010. Even as poor football and asinine front office moves surrounded him, Trent remained grounded and supportive of Mr. Snyder's hope to win football games. However, this relationship quickly turned for the worse. I could write this whole page about the Trent Williams saga, so instead I shall link this.
Goodbye Silverback.
 
  • Jordan Reed: If you thought the Trent Williams saga hurt me, oh boy you are not ready for this. Jordan Reed was probably my favorite Washington player up until last season. I was at his first big game in 2013, and boy was it a sight to see. A 3rd round TE from Florida, Reed was a bright spot on a more distant 3-13 Washington Squad still hoping for RG3's knees to spring back to life. When Reed was on fire, he was on. In his heyday of 2015 and 2016, Reed was a top tier Pro-Bowl talent TE possessing the quickness of a WR with the strength and build of a TE. However, we all know how this story ends. In 2013, he only played 9 games due to concussions. In 2014, he hurt his hamstring twice throughout the season yet still played in 11 games. As stated earlier, 15' and 16' were the golden years, but his hamstring came back to derail almost his entire 2017 season. By last year, he had over 9 known concussions, and one can only assume his hamstring is not in good shape. This is a classic example of injuries destroying a once promising career. If you are ever in need of watching some electrifying tight end plays, check this out, I promise you will not regret it. Thank you Jordan!
 
Players signed
Player Position Old team Length Salary
Wes Schweitzer OG Falcons 3 years $13.5 mil, $4 mil guaranteed
Kendall Fuller CB Chiefs 4 years $40 mil, $23.5 mil guaranteed
Logan Thomas TE Lions 2 years $6.145 mil, $2.25 mil guaranteed
Sean Davis S Steelers 1 year $4 mil, $2 mil guaranteed
Kyle Allen QB Panthers 1 year $675k
Thomas Davis LB Chargers 1 year $3.5 mil, $1.75 mil guaranteed
J.D. McKissic RB Seahawks 2 year $3.27 mil, $1 mil guaranteed
Peyton Barber RB Buccaneers 2 year $3 mil, $600k guaranteed
Cornelius Lucas OT Bears 2 year $3.8 mil, $1 mil guaranteed
Richard Rogers TE Eagles 1 year $1 mil
Cody Latimer WR Giants 1 year $1 mil, $137.5k guaranteed
Kevin Pierre-Louis LB Bears 1 year $3 mil, $1.5 mil guaranteed
Jeremy Vujnovich OG Cardinals 1 year $825k
Ronald Darby CB Eagles 1 year $3 mil, $1 mil guaranteed
Mike Liedtke OG Buccaneers 1 year $750k
Key Additions:
  • Kendall Fuller: We are proud to welcome our 2016 3rd rounder and new Super Bowl Champion back to DC. Fuller has proven himself as a formidable slot cornerback, and should be a day 1 starter immediately. In fact, I could see us playing him on the outside if need be, as our secondary will become stretched dry rather quickly. If we can trade for Malik Jefferson, we could finally have all pieces of the Alex Smith trade back on the roster, including Alex Smith himself (hang in there buddy :( ).
 
  • Thomas Davis: A 3x Pro Bowler and bonafide former team leader of the Carolina Panthers, Thomas Davis is a welcome addition to our locker room. While at age 37 he may not start or play the most downs, his presence and familiarity with Rivera lends kindly to helping younger defensive players adjust and learn the new system.
 
  • Ronald Darby: Darby has never played a full 16 game season, and the past two seasons in particular seem to be injury ridden. However, our secondary is in need of a #2 to step up behind Fuller and if Moreau cannot make a leap then Darby better be a frog. This one year, prove-it deal will show whether or not Darby is ready to play with the big boys now.
 
Players resigned
Player Position Length Salary
Jon Bostic LB 2 year $5.1 mil, $2.25 mil guaranteed
Caleb Brantley DT 1 year $750k
Nate Orchard LB/DE 1 year $1 mil, $137.5k guaranteed
Aaron Colvin CB 1 year $1 mil, $137.5k guaranteed
Brandon Scherff OG 1 year $15.03 mil guaranteed (franchise tag)
Important Resigns:
  • Jon Bostic: The former 2nd rounder has bounced around the league since 2013, but with Reuben Foster tearing his ACL in training camp last year, Bostic was thrust into the starting LB slot. While far from perfect, Bostic played surprisingly well last year, recording 105 tackles, a sack, and a pick. It is unclear whether Bostic's ceiling is much higher then this going into year 8 of his career. The signing of Thomas Davis and an even better D-Line could help Bostic shine more as there is less pressure on him. Overall, a good team friendly extension on a starte1st off the bench quality player.
 
  • Brandon Scherff: Except for some penalty troubles, Scherff has been the most consistent offensive lineman this team has had in the past five years who is not upset at our current front office. While I am unsure if he was worthy of the Pro Bowl this past year, he is a stud OG and I am glad we have kept him his whole rookie deal. Hopefully a long-term can be worked out soon (though the deadline may have just past for franchise tagees), but keeping him on the franchise tag is far down the list of personnel issues.
 
 

Draft

Round Number Player Position School
1 2 Chase Young DE Ohio State
3 66 Antonio Gibson WRB Memphis
4 108 Saahdiq Charles OT LSU
4 142 Antonio Gandy-Golden WR Liberty
5 156 Keith Ismael C San Diego State
5 162 Khaleke Hudson LB Michigan
7 216 Kamren Curl S Arkansas
7 229 James Smith-Williams DE N.C. State
UDFA N/A Thaddeus Moss TE LSU
UDFA N/A Steven Montez QB Colorado
UDFA N/A Isaiah Wright WR Temple
UDFA N/A Johnathon Johnson WR Missouri
Grades and Thoughts:
  • Chase Young: How much more can be said about this guy? Young was known for months to be the consensus number one talent of the draft, and that has not changed in the past months. He is a forced to be reckoned with, and putting him alongside our other D-Lineman is a scary sight. The often made comparison is that of the Bosa brothers, who both came into the league and wrecked havoc upon entry. I see Young doing the same thing, having a minimum 10+ sack season. Fear the predator y'all. GRADE: A+
 
  • Antonio Gibson: Almost every analysis I have read about Gibson describes him in one of two ways: 1) A swiss-army knife 2) A football player. While I can't disagree with either, these both seem to be big buzzwords that cable football analysis loves to float around to tons and tons of players. No matter how you describe him, Gibson's highlight real speaks for itself. Most project him into a RB role in our system, and with Chris Thompson setting sail with Jay Gruden Gibson can not pick up the slack here. If he can provide support to Peterson and Guice, great! If he could improve our dismal receiving unit, even better! I like this pick, but can also see it failing if Rivera and Turner cannot utilize him correctly. GRADE: B+
 
  • Saahdiq Charles: Using a picks here on the O-Line was a smart move, as our bench before the draft was extremely thin. Charles has been a part of one of the best O-line's in the nation at LSU, helping Clyde Edwards-Helaire run over the entire goddamn SEC. While there was a distraction of off-field issues, i.e. his six game suspension in his junior year. My understanding is that this stemmed from maturity issues and possible failed drug tests. Without these concerns, Charles would not have fallen to this round. Even with the character issue, his on the field product is fantastic, and if there was any coach to help Charles stay the right path it would be Ron Rivera. GRADE: B
 
  • Antonio Gandy-Golden: My information on Gandy-Golden and Liberty football in general is extremely limited, but the little I have seen is fantastic. At 6'4, 223 lbs Gandy-Golden is prototypical size and his highlights at Liberty reflect that. He is able to utilize is wingspan to have a large catch radius and contend for aired out balls. In addition, while his 4.6 40 yard dash may be slightly underwhelming, his speed on tape is evident and can work. As the receiver competition is wide open, Gandy-Golden can easily become the number two receiver on this squad if he puts in the work. And according to social media, it appears he is trying. GRADE: A
 
  • Keith Ismael: Another offensive linemen, but I struggle to see Ismael in any role besides backup this year. Ismael was solid player for his three year college career, and learning behind our O-line can do him well to bring him up to NFL speed. I can see him sitting behind Rouiller most of the year, but there's always the potential for something more if he is a diamond in the rough. However, I would have liked for a TE selection here. GRADE: B
 
  • Kamren Curl: Curl seemed to be an intrenched starter for Arkansas, but it is hard to see what is exactly unique with his skill set. At 6'1, 206 lbs he has the body of a safety or even cornerback, which tracks as he played both positions in school. The most known information about him is that he was suspended for flirting with a cheerleader his sophomore season, but if that is his biggest character concern then I don't really care. In addition, he later cleared the confusion, noting that the cheerleader just wanted a photo with him. GRADE: C
 
  • James Smith-Williams: A depth signing for our defensive front, which is all good in my book. However, this deep dive into the man shows that Smith-Williams has the potential to be more then a name in DC. His injury history is very troubling, but if he can put that Big Bang Theory Sheldon brain of his to our team then I am all for it. 7th rounders are the time for risks, and Smith-Williams case is a unique one where the injuries are not as much a concern for me. GRADE: C+
 
If the only player we keep out of this draft in the next 5 years is Chase Young, it will still have been a success. However, I have a feeling that other players will make an impact here, particularly with Gibson or Gandy-Golden breaking out in a rushing or receiving competition. For Kyle Smith and Rivera's first draft, it could have gone a lot worse. The amount of BS spewed about us drafting Tua or trading down was EVERYWHERE online before the draft, so I am jus glad we didn't mess it up as bad as we could have. Overall, I'd rate this draft a B+, with the rating going higher if any of these other players break out as well.
 
 

Name Controversy

Look, both you and I know that this subject has been beaten to death, especially on this subreddit. So let us just establish the facts:
  • There has been ample push to change the name since the 1990s.
  • Dan Snyder said in 2013 that he would never change the name. "It's that simple. NEVER — you can use caps."
  • This month, Fedex, along with other major sponsors such as Nike and PepsiCo called on Snyder to change their name or face financial doom.
  • July 13, 2020 Snyder issues a press release stating the name and logo are both officially retired.
There are many more specifics and points of contention on this issue, and I think this WaPo graphic does a good job illustrating other key times that the name has been discussed or been a point of contention.
My thought? About damn time. Look, I understand that the name is offensive and have been all for changing it, but more importantly I just want us to focus on what ideally should be more pressing for this writeup: the players and the game. The politics of the name has been a distraction and disgrace to the proud men who have worn this city on their back for decades. Do not get me wrong: the actual name itself holds little meaning to me personally. However, I am younger than many fans of the team and understand the attachment some have had for their entire lives. Yet, I do not think we need to forget about Theismann, Baugh, Jurgensen, Doug Williams, Rypien, Riggins, the Hogs, and more just by retiring the name. I say, let this begin a new era in Washington football history where we can be remembered for playing a game we enjoy and love, not hurting others if we do not need to.
My personal preference for a new name as of now is Red Wolves. Maintaining the colors and HttR (Howl to the Red Wolves!) sounds nice, and the animal is theoretically indigenous to DC and the southeast US even as we may not see it commonly. If trademarks issues can settle, I believe we will hear the new name before the next season.
 
 

Sexual Harassment/Misconduct Issues

After finishing the Washington Post article today, I was left with a feeling of disgust and sadness, but not shock. Football has always been known as a "boy's club," and seeing women in positions of power in any NFL organization is not common. This is the reason why. While I do not know the situation of every front office, I would not be shocked if this is more common then one would suspect.
Now, do not get me wrong: this is disgusting and Snyder should be ashamed of himself. Letting this persist for over 20 years and clearly not giving any shits is despicable. I do not want to defend these actions in any manner. These men have done disgusting things, and the fact that Snyder has let them slide and persist for all this time is plain gross. This is a question about human decency and respect: do you respect your fellow person enough that you control what you say around them? That you think before you act? Clearly the Washington Football team has not cared about its female employees nearly enough. This is hurtful for everyone, male, female, non-binary, whatever. Please, just consider your fellow person when you are living your life. This is not hard.
 
 

Projected Lineup and Position Groups

 
Offense:
QB1: Dwayne Haskins
QB2: Kyle Allen
This should be Dwayne Haskins year to fully realize himself as a starting quarterback in the NFL. While I love watching his sexy instagram workouts, I can only get so worked up before needing to see the real deal. Since being thrown into the fray last year, we saw Dwayne progress in his decision making, but keep improvements in accuracy, particularly throwing mechanics, should be a focus this year. Even with a...subpar supporting cast (more on that later), this should be Simba's year to break out, or at least show that he is worthy of his first round draft selection.
I don't expect Allen or even Alex Smith (if he has recovered enough, which I am doubtful of) to give Haskins a run for his money. While Rivera has never stated he is sold on Haskins, do not think any other QB will start this season (barring injury.) Washington is committed, at least for this year, to Dwayne Haskins.
 
RB1: Adrian Peterson/Derrius Guice
RB3: Antonio Gibson
It is really a toss-up here whether or not AD or Guice starts, but if history is cyclical then Peterson will get the nod soon enough. I really want Guice to do well, and when he has not been injured he has done fairly well. However, I have little hope that his knees keep holding up, especially considering how much we may need to rely on our run game this year.
Peterson is old, but has shown to be consistent enough when we have a semblance of an offensive line. Our run game is decent, definitely not the worst in the league, but could be close to it. I imagine Gibson may fulfill the role of a receiver back, catching out of the backfield or taking hand-offs. He is bigger than Chris Thompson, but elusive enough that I could see some similarity in usage, especially as a rookie.
 
TE1: Jeremy Sprinkle
TE2: Richard Rogers, Logan Thomas
TE3: Thaddeus Moss
Sprinkle gets the nod here as the number one due to his experience in DC, but as the new regime is in town this is really anyone's game. Stat-wise Rogers and Thomas are relatively consistent, and while Moss has the obvious name recognition he is not even a lock to make the current roster. Sprinkle has always been subpar as a pass catcher, decent as blocker and not much else. Hopefully someone here breaks out or a trade swings through, otherwise this is one of our worst position groups on the roster.
 
WR1: Terry McLaurin
WR2: Steven Sims Jr.
WR3: Antonio Gandy-Golden/Cody Latimer
WR4: Trey Quinn
"McLaurin and then everybody else" is the best way to sum up our receiving unit. Scary Terry is once again our biggest threat and should have just as good if not a better year than 2019 as Haskins' accuracy issues (hopefully) clear up. I Like Sims Jr. as a returner, but his results as a receiver have been inconsistent. Perhaps he could be used similarly to Antonio Gibson, as I see him getting end around hand offs having big success. Gandy-Golden looks promising, but small school talent can be hard to adapt to the NFL. Latimer is a solid depth signing, and I am very unsure if Trey Quinn is worth his roster spot. While I mentioned the Tight End group being poor, this group is equal in that regard. Hopefully our run game can carry once again.
 
LT: Geron Christian Sr.
LG: Wes Schweitzer
C: Chase Roullier
RG: Brandon Scherff
RT: Morgan Moses
Scherff is a bright spot on this mediocre group, but he has had some penalty troubles and the contract situation for him is still unclear as for the future. Geron Christian should hopefully start and have improved since last year, and Schweitzer seems to be a decent signing. I like Rouiller under center for now. Saahdiq Charles and Keith Ismael could both become starters, but I have a feeling Rivera will not want to throw them into the fire early on. Overall I'd categorize this group as "eh?" and hope that our RBs can find enough holes. Haskins has also been improving his mobile game so escapability could be a needed factor with this line.
 
4-3 Defense:
LDE1: Chase Young
LDT: Matt Ioannidis
RDT: Daron Payne
RDE: Montez Sweat
This is by far the best position group on the entire roster. Calling these four the only starters is somewhat a misnomer, as Rivera and Del Rio will be frequently subbing in and out many linemen. Kerrigan and Jon Allen should still have large roles, but these are my choices based on durability and past success. Chase Young should be a stud, and I have heard him having between 10-15 sacks this year. Ioannidis has been a 5th round gem for us, leading the team in sacks last year. Payne and Sweat are both young and have shown some success, and I am hopeful they can both remain at worst starter level linemen. If our line is not getting after QBs like crazy this year, some big questions will need to be raised.
 
WLB: Cole Holcomb, Josh Harvey-Clemons
MLB: Jon Bostic, Thomas Davis
SLB: Ryan Anderson
While not as impressive as the linemen, our LB core is still a solid group. Thomas Davis brings in some leadership to an otherwise young group. Ryan Anderson will finally be playing in his natural position as a 4-3 LB. Both Bostic and Holcomb were impressive last year, though I am hoping their coverage (particularly Holcomb's) could improve. Harvey-Clemons is good for our depth, and solid rotation player. Overall not a flashy group, but should get the job done with the pressure all being up front.
 
CB1: Kendall Fuller
CB2: Ronald Darby, Greg Stroman
CB3: Fabian Moreau, Jimmy Moreland
FS: Sean Davis
SS: Landon Collins
The only unquestionable starters here are Fuller and Collins, and even Collins has been looking down as of recent. My dark-horse candidate is Jimmy Moreland, who impressed in last years preseason before being hidden or unnoticeable during the regular season. Moreau is decent, and Sean Davis is as good as Montae Nicholson ever was (especially considering his legal issues.) The loss of Quinton Dunbar is not sad whatsoever, and while his play was above-average, his robbery skills are very poor. This is the biggest whole in the defense by far, and my guess is that our team will ride or die by this secondary. If the front 7 is doing what it can to apply pressure, there will be some slack here. However, do not be surprised if next years writeup has many different players here.
 
Special Teams:
K: Dustin Hopkins
P: Tress Way
KR: Steven Sims Jr.
PR: Steven Sims Jr.
I want Tress Way to have my children so that they will be blessed with his punting genes. After a couple years of flying under the radar, Way was finally recognized in 2019 with a Pro Bowl and Second-team All-Pro nod. I am upset that Brett Kern got the nod over him for First-team, but the recognition is still appreciated. Hopkins is decent, though he does have a tendency to miss some close kicks (cough vs. Bengals in London cough), but he has provided stability to kicking for years now. Sims emerged last year as our return man, and with him bringing us our first return touchdown since 2015, I'll let him stay. Perhaps Gibson will try returning as well, who knows.
 
 

Schedule Prediction

 
Home against the Eagles: Loss
3 out of the past 4 years Washington has lost its openers, with two of those loses being against the Eagles themselves. Be ready for growing pains with a new name, coaching staff, and supporting cast. This season is not gonna get any easier.
 
Away against the Cardinals: Loss
This game could be a close one, but the Cardinals seem to be on the up with Kyler and Kingsbury. There air raid will be too much for the DC secondary, especially playing in Arizona.
 
Away against the Browns: Win
It's the Browns for god sake. Josh Norman had a game winning pick a couple years back for us against them. Sure, their QB was Cody Kessler, but different year same stories. No more Freddie Kitchens, still the same Browns.
 
Home against the Ravens: Loss
It's the Ravens. Enough said.
 
Home against the Rams: Loss
McVay and Co. should have our number here. Even without Gurley the Rams passing attack should be enough to take us down. The real downfall of our team is the secondary, that should be a pattern to notice. I'd like to believe in a Haskins comeback win here, but who knows.
 
Away against the Giants: Loss
Going into the Meadowlands, I expect a game similar to the late OT thriller of last season, with the Daniel Jones reigning supreme again. Saquon will distract our defense enough that number one receiver... Sterling Shepard will bust us up. Clap man Garett gets us again.
 
Home against the Cowboys: Win
Come on now, it's the Cowboys. Dak is overpaid, blah blah blah. Coming back home and wanting to prove ourselves after a crippling loss last week, I think Simba can pull off a nice home win here.
 
Home against the Giants: Win
Revenge game of the 2019 QBs, and this time Haskins will stay on top. Expect a nice performance from McLaurin, and Chase Young destroying Mr. Jones.
 
Away against the Lions: Win
I'm praying that Chase Young is able to get after Stafford enough that he does not pull a come back against us here, but I expect this game to be close as well. Perhaps Okudah has a pick six, why not.
 
Home against the Bengals: Win
Haskins vs. Burrow. Burrow vs. Young. A bonafide 2019 tank-bowl matchup. I feel we have the upper hand here, but really this game should be a shit show. Should be juicy though.
 
Away against the Cowboys: Loss
Playing in Jerry World is ass, though I'll never forget Colt McCoy leading us to victory on Monday night. No way in hell we go 2-0 against the Cowboys, so mark this down as a loss.
 
Away against the Steelers: Loss
Big Ben is back and can run around in the pocket, meaning even with ample pressure his offense will do better than ours.
 
Away against the 49ers: Loss
It's the Niners, and they mean business. Last year's game was a 9-0 snoozefest for some reason, so I'm guessing this one will be 30-27 shootout. Should be fun to see a potential Trent Williams vs. Chase Young matchup.
 
Home against the Seahawks: Loss
Russell Wilson.
 
Home against the Panthers: Win
Rivera fights his old team and...wins?? Yep, even with Teddy B I feel our defense will keep us afloat. Shaq Thompson is scary, but I am not particularly afraid of Donte Jackson and Eli Apple... Haskins will now probably throw three picks.
 
Away against the Eagles: Win
Ending the season on a positive note, what?? Yes, this one may be a stretch. However, if the Eagles are in the number one spot, my guess is that they would rest their starters against ours. Then again, I have no clue who will win the East so your guess is as best as mine. At any rate, I am ready to 100 percent lockdown Wentz this game, maybe.
 
Final record: 7-9, miss the playoffs, 3rd in NFC East
In my book, this would be an OK first year for Rivera. Coming in with so many green players and an entirely new system can lend itself to mediocrity, but building off of this year is crucial in my book to finally escaping out of the limbo which Washington has played in since Snyder bought the team in 1999.
Draft wise, this should set us up for a pick between...12-15? A solid early/mid-first, probably drafting a receiver, tight end, or secondary player depending on who pans out this year.
 
 

Training Camp Battles to watch

 
  • Wide Receivers:
Like previously mentioned, it is unclear who will be receivers 2 and 3 behind McLaurin. Kelvin Harmon and Steven Sims Jr. emerged as early contenders, but as noted earlier Harmon tore his ACL. Latimer was ok last year on the Giants, but can he beat out Gandy-Golden or Sims Jr. at the top of the chart. I believe players such as Trey Quinn, Cam Sims, Johnathon Johnson and Isaiah Wright are all fighting for a roster space, so seeing them as starters is extremely unlikely. Predicted Winners: Antonio Gandy-Golden and Steven Sims Jr.
 
  • Tight Ends:
This whole roster spot is a toss up. I truly am hoping that Sprinkle gets a kick in the rear to elevate or somebody else steps up, as he was far from a special talent last year. His name makes sense, as he was only able to Sprinkle in a few catches from Haskins and Keenum throughout 2019. Both Richard Rogers and Logan Thomas aren't impressive, so the hope for fans is that Thad Moss or an unknown player such as Marcus Baugh is able to claim the spot. No matter who wins here, the position will be weak. Predicted Winner: Jeremy Sprinkle
 
  • Cornerback:
The battle here lies between all players not named Fuller or Darby. Known Redskins names such as Fabian Moreau, Greg Stroman, Jimmy Moreland, and Danny Johnson are all fighting to be the number 3 corner or remain on the roster in a bench role. I feel at most one of these players will be cut, but overall secondary job security should remain steady for 95 percent of Washington players. Predicted Winner: Fabian Moreau
 
 

Offensive and Defensive Schemes

Offense:
One of the points I've read stressed about Scott Turner is his ability to fit the offense for the QB. As this will be his first full time OC job, it is unclear exactly what schemes he plans to run, but I assume it will be up to date with the fast and mobile trends of stat and data driven offenses today. Perhaps we shall see some similarities to his father, who utilized both Air Coryell and spread techniques in Carolina.
 
Defense: Base 4-3, 4-3 Under
As mentioned before, Del Rio and Rivera are shifting our defense from a 3-4 of the past to a 4-3. This should help our rush game significantly, with players such as Ryan Anderson and Chase Young being able to fit in the scheme quite naturally, For more in depth coverage, be sure to read this Hog's Haven post which will explain it more in depth.  
 
Thanks for reading! Let me know your thoughts down below. Agree, disagree? This was my first year writing, so I hope it was bearable to read!
Offseason Review Hub
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2020.07.15 10:58 Po_Biotic Awestruck

Galen Abbot, Awestruck

"If you don't like the hand you were dealt, just draw your own. Your life is your own to make."
Theme Song: Move - Thousand Foot Krutch
Date of Birth:
Appearance:
Mentality:
Awestruck carries himself proudly and is quite relaxed at most times, even in dangerous situations. He believes in his own power and it shows. While he doesn't leave himself open to attack, he does not show fear when in the presence of an enemy. He respects those stronger than him and does not look down on those weaker than him. He believes you need to be strong to advance in the world but does not believe it is necessary for survival, nor does he believe strength comes only comes in the form of powerful metahuman abilities. He knows strength can come from natural intelligence, charisma, or influence. He is more than willing to protect those that need it and believes all have the power deep within them to achieve greatness with enough effort.
Underneath Awestruck's confidence, willpower, and exuberant flair lies residual feelings of resentment and animosity towards those who act superior due to wealth, class status, or intelligence, and towards those who looked down on him in the past. He carries an overwhelming desire to prove himself and to fit into the world around him.
Background:
A kid born with nothing and no future. Galen's parents were drug-addicted, low-income retail clerks in Appalachia. He wasn't even one-year-old before he was taken by CPS. He was simply another statistic in the system for the majority of his life, bouncing around various foster homes and strict Catholic private schools, only to be moved again a few months later for a multitude of reasons, always out of his control. When the boy turned 13, he was visiting Washington DC on a school field trip and decided he'd try his hand at street performing for some money since actual spending money was never something he had and he wanted a souvenir to take back home. He managed to catch the attention of a music industry executive that night who offered Galen a chance to be a background dancer in music videos. After obtaining permission from his foster parents, Galen was allowed to start. He quickly established himself as someone who had potential and continued to get larger and larger positions. When he was 16, Galen had enough money saved up that allowed him to do what he had always wanted to do. Get the hell off the east coast and go west. With what little money Galen he had, he got a tiny apartment in Los Angeles and began working in the dance scene out there. He currently works as a choreographer when he isn't busy with side projects.
Base of Operations:
Alignment: Hero
Tier: Gamma

Skills

Galen is an amateur with a long sword and is currently taking HEMA lessons. Additionally, he has two years of serious MMA lessons under his belt and is currently the level of a purple belt in BJJ.
He is near-fluent in classical Latin and Italian from his years of Catholic school.
Galen is a naturally talented dancer and has won more than a few school talent shows with his Michael Jackson impression. Related to his dancing abilities, Galen is a skilled free runner, has a good sense of balance, and is very flexible for a guy.

Equipment/Resources

A messer with a 1.2-meter blade.
Foldable Ka-Bar for when he's caught without his sword.
Galen has a sizeable savings accounts to his name and makes $85,000 a year from dancing.

Powers

Panache
Awestruck exudes style and flair. When he desires it, music and sound effects will accompany his actions. Mundane weather and natural surroundings are under his control so he can make an entrance and fight in style. He has a superhuman sense of how to strike a pose. His smile literally shines. His hair will blow in the non-existent breeze or remain in illogical positions without any gel. Sparks will fly off his weapons when he strikes something.
Jaw Dropper
When Awestruck staggers someone their mouth falls agape and cannot be closed until they recover from the stagger.
Energy Aura
Awestruck is constantly wreathed in an aura of his own internal energy which provides him with enhanced physicals. Additionally, there are several applications he has with this.
This aura is effectively bottomless, but Awestruck has a limit to what he can draw on at once. This is represented by a pool that has 300 points, which refreshes over the course of an hour.
Weapon Enhancement:
Awestruck's aura wraps weapons in his energy, raising their maximum piercing capability to 350 kJ/mm2 when combined with his own strength. His slashing capability is 80% as effective.
Weapons become heavily resistant to damage, able to take 5 MJ before starting to take damage, 10 MJ before minor damage, 25 MJ before major damage, and 40 MJ before absolute failure. Lower level attacks will build up damage over repeated strikes. A weapon's piercing defense is double that of their own cutting ability.
Offensive
Name Description Point Cost
Savior's Slash Awestruck's sword phases through targets he does not wish to cut for one attack. 3 points
Hordebreaker Unleashes a visible energy slash. Carries Awestruck's slashing property at first, but drops off linearly to 50% strength until the slash disappears at 50 meters. The slash is three meters wide but can but made smaller if desired. Moves at combat speed. 5 points
Backbiter A phantom strike mirrors Awestruck's attack behind him for one strike. 3 points
Split Vision A phantom strike horizontally mirrors Awestruck's attack in front of him for one strike. 6 points
Waxing Crescent Extends the effective cutting length of Awestruck's next attack to 2.5 meters for one strike. 3 points
Will Breaker Raises Awestruck's striking strength to 28 MJ or 400 kJ/mm2 for two strikes. Additionally, this ability can be used to negate/reduce the energy of an incoming attack up to its limit. Reducing a weaker strike uses a proportionally lower amount of energy. 10 points
Defensive
Name Description Point Cost
Shared Strength When Awestruck is in contact with people or objects he lift, he can selectively grant them his durability (cannot go above his). This can be chained. This ability costs no points but Awestruck can leave them wrapped in his aura after breaking contact. 3 points per 5 seconds. The amount of protection and its length can be weakened for a lower point cost.
Steadfast Raises Awestruck's personal durability to that of his sword for one attack and reduces his knockback to a maximum of one meter. 5 points
Supplementary
Name Description Point Cost
Foothold Allows Awestruckto use his own energy as a platform to maneuver on for 60 seconds. 3 points
Memento Mori As Awestruck makes an attack, the target receives a vision of their death should they try and block or tank the blow. This vision lasts for one of their reaction times. It does not work on the same person multiple times within 10 of their reaction cycles. This is a mental and sensory-based hallucinogenic effect. 15 points
All Seeing Aura Provides Awestruck with a 3D view and low powered telekinetic sense of the surrounding area out to 25 meters for 50 milliseconds. 3 points
Mirage Generates a visual and auditory illusion of Awestruck for 5 seconds which he can control. He can have one of these active at once and it can travel no more than 50 meters from himself. Can move at his combat speed. 15 points
Flicker 15-meter teleport. Does not carry momentum. 5 ms second delay. 3 points
Brutum Fulmen Awestruck's next five strikes will cause no physical harm to targets he chooses, only being able to knock them out and exhaust them if it would normally KO/kill. 5 points
Metabolic Burn Rapidly burns off Awestruck's energy in exchange for rapid healing. 300 points would regrow limbs. 150 points would heal a mortal wound, 100 points would close a deep gash. 50 points would close scrapes and heal bruises. 50 points would lower stagger damage taken down to unphased damage. This healing can be channeled onto someone in contact with Awestruck.
Absorption Restores 5 points for every creature Awestruck kills or knocks out. Passive
Physicals
Durability Type Unphased Tank Stagger Knockdown KO Other
Energy >100 kJ 100 kJ-15 MJ 15 MJ-25 MJ 25 MJ-28 MJ 28 MJ-37 MJ
Thermal -200o F - 800o F (144-700 K) 25 times resistant to thermal change, Flesh burns begin at 1250o F (950 K).
Energy Density 350 kJ/mm2
Crushing/Ripping >10 tons 10-50 tons 50-110 tons 110-190 tons 180-240 tons
Lifting Strength Striking Energy
120 tons 15 MJ
Foot Speed, Acceleration Distance Combat Speed Reactions
150 m/s 200 m/s 8 ms

Feats

Combined Will Breaker, Waxing Crescent, Split Vision, Brutum Fulmen, Memento Mori and Savior's Slash into one strike as a finishing blow, but exhausted a massive portion of his energy in the process.
Easily stalled a bank robber until the cops arrived then styled on the man for a good five minutes in front of an audience.
Walked up the side of a building with Foothold.
Mirage can be made to do anything Awestruck is normally capable of and can appear to use his abilities.
Mirage fooled a tactical based, telekinetic sense, but not actual physical inspection.
Cut a tank in half down the middle with Waxing Crescent
Ran through a metal ship without stopping or taking damage, caused the vessel to begin sinking.
Can see underwater and at night as well as during the day.
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2020.06.30 20:01 goodamerica Diploma Privilege: What This Moment Demands

JUNE 26, 2020 08:55:45 PM Vania M. SmithEdited by: Tim Zubizarreta
Vania M. Smith, a J.D. 2020 graduate of the Catholic University of America, discusses the racial and socioeconomic inequities facing 2020 Bar Exam students and calls for diploma privilege...
COVID-19 has forced jurisdictions across the country to make decisions regarding the administration of this year’s Bar Exam. These decisions have altered the date, location, format, and portability of results; and have done so in ways that are anything but equitable. What has resulted is an atmosphere of stressful uncertainty and confusion that has laid bare the inherent socioeconomic and racial inequities of this antiquated rite of passage into the legal profession. To steal an oft tested phrase on the MBE, in the interest of “fair play and substantial justice,” bar examiners across the country must accept that the protection of this ritual through the administration of either in-person or remote exams during the COVID-19 crisis is unfair and unjust. Diploma privilege is the equitable solution this moment demands.
The formula for bar preparation is quite simple. Graduate from law school, pay $2,000–$5,000 for commercial bar preparation programs and study materials, quit or delay the start of a job to study for 8–10 weeks, spend 6–10 hours per day studying, pay the necessary fees which range from $500–$1,800, and sit for the bar exam. This formula was already fraught with socioeconomic and racial disparities prior to COVID-19. However, when the effects of a global pandemic are injected into the administration of the bar exam, the inequities become alarming.
Traditional graduates often leave law school with substantial debt and are given limited time after graduation before payments commence. The lucky graduates were able to complete the prerequisite unpaid internships, work as a paid summer associate, and land a firm job that will cover bar preparation expenses. But what about graduates with limited resources, no familial financial support, and no firm job to bridge the gap? What about the graduates who worked full-time during law school and were unable to accept unpaid internships? What about non-traditional students with dependent children? Enter COVID-19 and we now have a class in crisis. The country is in the midst of record unemployment. Graduates relying on jobs in the service industry for basic income are out of work. Law firms are bracing for a recession and have all but halted entry-level hiring. As jurisdictions continue to push the standard administration of the July exam deeper into the calendar year through October, graduates are forced to go without a source of income longer; amassing more debt, and possibly losing entry-level positions to February 2020 examinees, who are now licensed attorneys. This socioeconomic crisis also makes the very process of getting a seat at the bar exam fundamentally unfair. As accessibility to exam dates has fluctuated throughout the summer, graduates with economic means have paid multiple jurisdictions in hopes of getting a seat where a portable score is offered. Graduates have positioned themselves to take the bar exam in preferred jurisdictions only accessible via travel and hotel stays that many cannot afford.
Once a seat is secured, how does a graduate prepare during a pandemic? Public libraries, coffee shops, and law schools have been closed since March, forcing bar examinees across the country to study at home. For the select few, home during the crisis is back with their parents, with access to conducive study space; but for the vast majority of examinees, cramped apartment living is the norm. In a typical summer, a conducive study environment could easily be achieved by providing recent graduates with access to study rooms in public libraries, space on law school or college campuses, or an office setting on breaks or after hours. However, these potential equalizers are all closed. As I write this article, home for me is in a neighborhood in Washington, D.C. where the unemployment rate is four times the national average. Schools and summer camps are closed due to the ongoing pandemic. In short, everyone is at home. This creates an environment where noise is a constant distraction. This is even more of a barrier to success for those with children at home who have to balance being caregivers and studying at the same time, including many who had to finish law school while home-schooling their children. Finally, extreme mental stressors are rampant. Black students have long faced obstacles to bar admission. Currently, only 5% of U.S. lawyers are Black. The civil and racial unrest resulting in protests across the country have evoked undeniable feelings of fear and despair. In addition, COVID-19 has disproportionate serious or fatal effects on Black people, further contributing to Black graduate angst. Overall, cases in the US have exceeded 2.6 million and the number of deaths has reached 122,000. Students are rightfully scared. Examinees have faced this illness themselves, or in their families and friends. Many know someone who has died from COVID-19. How can graduates possibly be expected to prepare for an exam of this magnitude at a time like this? But in some jurisdictions, graduates have been told the show must go on.
Jurisdictions conducting in-person exams are requiring temperature checks and masks for examinees. In Kentucky, examinees have been warned that if they fail the temperature check they will have to wait for the next administration of the exam. I can think of no better incentive for a desperate examinee to conceal symptoms, potentially exposing others to the virus. Examinees will use shared public restrooms and common areas on breaks that create additional exposure to touchpoints. In Philadelphia, lunch breaks will be in bustling public areas near the Convention Center, after which examinees will return for the afternoon session. Some courts have already made the decision to shut down and move in-person hearings to 2021 because there is no vaccine or effective treatment for COVID-19; yet these same courts believe it is acceptable to administer an in-person bar exam.
In Washington, DC, Maryland, Indiana, and Louisiana, the bar exam will be administered remotely. This option was offered by the National Council of Bar Examiners (“NCBE”) for jurisdictions that believe in-person examination would be impossible. The notion that such an administration could possibly be fair and equitable is preposterous. It assumes, as many policies of the NCBE have always assumed, that the majority of bar examinees are 25-year-olds with no children, with access to sufficient in-home testing environments, and with financial resources necessary to “make it work.” Sadly, this creates another barrier to admission to the profession for those that do not fit this profile. In addition to inadequate testing environments, examinees also face inequitable access to reliable internet—a necessity for exam administration. For example, the internet service provider in my area often conducts unscheduled maintenance without warning. There is no guarantee an interruption will not occur during the exam. It is also unfair to assume all students have internet access beyond their cell phones or have the required robust speeds. This is why law schools still have computer labs, even in 2020. But these labs, like the campuses, are still closed as the health crisis continues.
Safe, equitable administration of the bar exam via in-person testing is not possible. The US reached its highest number of new cases to date on June 24th. Unfortunately, the number of new cases is still rising. There is no way to limit touchpoint exposure throughout the examination day. There is no way to know if an examinee is already infected by mere temperature checks. There is no equity in an in-person administration during a pandemic that adversely affects some examinees based on race, age, and pre-existing conditions. There is no safe option for the immunocompromised. Masks are not enough and are an added stressor. Bar examinees should not have to face fear for their health and survival, and that of their loved ones to take the bar exam. The continued closure of the courts, the implementation of online trials, and convening of professional conferences via virtual platforms through year-end demonstrate the courts are well aware of the dangers of public settings. Moving forward with in-person bar examinations with knowledge of that danger is unconscionable.
Equitable administration of the bar exam via remote testing is not possible. There is no equity of the testing environment if each examinee is taking the bar exam in their own home. There is no equity if some examinees are forced to incur the expense of a hotel room or business incubator space to take the bar exam due to an unsuitable home environment. No equity can be guaranteed as it relates to the reliability of in-home internet, the possibility of power outages due to inclement weather, and other external factors outside of the examinee’s control.
It could not be clearer that the administration of the bar exam during a global pandemic with a simultaneous period of civil unrest is irresponsible. Moreover, the NCBE’s rationale that administering the bar exam is essential for the protection of the public is hypocritical. Specifically, the current president of the NCBE was admitted via diploma privilege, but now actively advocates against it.
This moment is unprecedented. Lawyers are trained to use skill, logic, justice, and fairness to meet the moment. Diploma privilege is what this moment demands.
Vania M. Smith, M.P.A., J.D., is a 2020 graduate of the Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law, where she was the 2019 National Trial Competition (NTC) Champion. Her scholarly interests are Professional Responsibility and Legal Ethics.
Suggested citation: Vania M. Smith, Diploma Privilege: What This Moment Demands, JURIST – Student Commentary, June 26, 2020, https://www.jurist.org/commentary/2020/06/vania-smith-diploma-privilege-racial-economic-inequities/.
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2020.06.30 17:55 digital4kcollector screen passes

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2020.06.30 17:26 DukeDKraft The Institute Director - Chapters One through Six (Pages 1 - 30)

Chapter One
Tuesday, July 16th, 2019
In a warehouse parking lot near Walter Reed Medical Center, the Mormon institute director fumbled with the cellophaned pack, retrieving and lighting his first cigarette in thirty-eight years. He barely inhaled as he smoked it through, surprised how familiar it was to his senses. The ash glowed orange and the smoke spun his head as it wafted out the car’s open windows. He looked at his hands as he lit his second, wondering if the small tremors were from the fresh nicotine, the high stakes of the day or another dose of guilt settling into his bones.
Ben Samuels remembered he’d scarcely heard his alarm go off that morning, as he’d been up and dressed. His wife had hit snooze and returned to her sleep. She didn’t think to check on him, nor make an effort to rise. Would Marge have done different had she known what was happening? Maybe, maybe not -- she’d become so distant over the past months.
He stared down at his cigarette.
I bet she’d notice this.
.....
That morning alarm rang as Ben stood with a vacant gaze out his kitchen window, oatmeal bubbling on the stove. Dawn’s light gathered across the plain backyard, the sky clear and the grass begging a mow -- the start of a hot July day in Morgantown, West Virginia. Oats done, he grabbed milk from the fridge and made his way to the table, wholly uninterested in the meal.
He pushed aside his old high school yearbook and opened his laptop, commencing a read-through of his regular websites as he ate -- the Mormon Newsroom, USA Today, Consumer Reports and Amazon, the last to check on a backordered hedge trimmer blade. Only then did he reluctantly click onto the front page of the local paper. He finished his breakfast as he re-read the article detailing John Southland’s bike accident. Though it failed to identify him by his correct name, Ben knew it was his old college roommate under the police blanket in the photos.
He sighed and picked up his yearbook for the third time since learning of John’s death, or John’s murder or whatever it had been. Rogers High School, Spokane, Washington. Class of 1979. Page forty-four, Samuels before Southland, both their senior pictures on the same tuxedoed page. He ran his finger along a faded ballpoint line drawn circuitous between the two of them, “Race On!” written in the margin. Forty years and now a funeral instead of a class reunion, not that John would have attended anyway.
Should he call the authorities? Wake up Marge and tell her everything? His main thought was to do nothing. The paper showed the situation in-hand and it was really none of his business. But Ben couldn’t shake the dread that had gripped him during John’s surprise visit the week before.
He looked around his quiet kitchen half-expecting a calamity to break out. Nothing out of order besides the squeak of the air conditioner, he took a bright yellow USB thumb drive from his pocket and inserted it into his computer. He keyed down and opened the lone video file, still amazed at John’s resolve. There it was -- a silent and grainy footage, a prisoner restrained and bleeding at the end of a penitentiary hallway. Two men exiting the frame, the bald one halfway out and unrecognizable, the other tall and in view. The tall man turning back. Ben winced as the man pulled out what must have been a syringe full of something evil and plunged it into the prisoner’s neck. The prisoner struggled, then slumped at his feet. Ben scooted his chair close and watched again -- starting, stopping, reversing and witnessing once more. It was the most horrible thing he’d ever seen. But had John been correct?
He looked up at Marge’s knick-knacks on the plaster wall. Staring back was a kitschy cross-stitch their oldest daughter had finished fifteen years prior. It read ‘Just Do It,’ the famous quote from both the Mormon prophet Spencer Kimball and a certain Oregon shoe company.
John Southland had been so convinced and so desperate for help. Ben had heard him out in his institute office but done nothing. Now he was dead, like he’d predicted, and Ben had his evidence.
Just Do It.
He turned and rummaged through a worn-out credenza drawer, finding a red envelope. He grabbed a half-sheet of paper, searched for a location on his web browser, wrote his note and sealed it up. A final glance at the cross-stitch and the decision was made. Ben quietly put his dishes in the sink and hurried to his car, an uneasy three-hour drive to Washington, DC ahead of him.
 
Chapter Two
Two Weeks Prior
The only thing interesting about the old split-level colonial atop North Tremont Avenue was its view toward Greensburg’s historic beaux-arts courthouse. The county kept it lit at night and John Southland had come to appreciate its ostentatious dome. He gazed at it most evenings with cold beer in hand, sitting on the concrete steps outside the postwar brick and clapboard home.
The panorama was between telephone wires and across a wide working-class valley, the house on the wrong side of the tracks and long-ago apportioned into three separate apartments to maximize revenue. John had been given the walkup on the main floor -- a creaky sitting room in front of a Formica kitchen with two worn-out bedrooms down a hall. Beneath him was a small basement unit, the third apartment accessed from the blacktop alley around the back.
For most, it would be a dilapidated and bleak place to live. For John, it was a mansion. He reveled in the freedom and the space, twenty years of incarceration fresh in his rearview mirror. The small pleasure of a beer with a view seemed almost magical from day one.
He hadn’t met many neighbors yet. There’d been an occasional ‘Hello, I’m Jimmy Montano,’ but John had remained quiet, taking to heart his WITSEC Inspector’s advice to start slow with the introductions. He filled his plate instead with his new job and all the rules and regulations that came with being a parolee within the U.S. Marshals Service Witness Protection Program. The secret he held also made him careful, a ticking bomb tucked an inch below his veneer.
There’d been only one purchase beyond the necessities, an old Bianchi Celeste from a pawnshop owner who had little concept of its worth. They agreed on a hundred dollars and soon the mint green racer was performing like a European custom. John set out to regain his pre-prison cycling form, spending his evenings and off-days riding the hills of Pennsylvania’s Westmoreland County. He was careful to not cross the government line as WITSEC rules didn’t allow such excursions for at least six months.
His other pastime was more critical -- finding Ben Samuels. Early attempts had been fruitless. His old friend’s name was nowhere to be found on the Mormon Church’s voluminous website. John checked multiple times, waiting over a month before calling the 800 number in Salt Lake City, not wanting one shred of connection to the threat that beset him. Out of options, he used the counter phone at the downtown library after a final attempt searching the site.
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, how may I help you?”
“I’m trying to get in touch with one of your employees. A man who works for your church.”
“Name please.”
“Ben Samuels.”
“Which department?”
“No idea. Sorry.”
“Just a moment.”
The woman was quickly back on the line. “Yes, I found him. He works for the CES.”
“CES?”
“Church Educational System. I’ll transfer you.”
The phone clicked and another woman picked up the call. “CES, how may I help you?”
“Ben Samuels, please.”
“Who?”
“I’d like to speak with Ben Samuels.”
“…May I ask who you’re with?”
“No one, ma’am. I’m just trying to reach him.”
“He no longer works here, in our offices.”
“Can you transfer me to his location?”
“Please hold a moment.”
“I’m an old friend of his.”
“Yes sir. Please hold.”
The line switched and John found himself listening to what he recognized as the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. It was thirty seconds before someone came back on.
“This is Associate Director Oscar Trejo, may I ask who’s calling?”
The authority in the man’s voice made John want to hang up. “…James. James Montano. I’m trying to reach Ben Samuels.”
“I see. Well, I can tell you he’s no longer here.”
“Does he still work for your church?”
“For the time being. He’s out east, in West Virginia.”
John stood up straight. Ben was nearby. “Do you have a number?”
“I must ask, are you with the press?”
“The press? You mean like a reporter?”
“Yes sir.”
“No, nothing like that. Just a friend.”
John held his breath. The administrator paused, then relented. “…OK, I’ll take you at your word. I’ll give you back to my secretary and she can provide the phone number to the Morgantown Institute.”
John didn’t wait, hanging up as the Tabernacle Choir started a new hymn. He walked back to his allotted computer terminal and keyed in “Mormon Institute, Morgantown West Virginia.” The screen refreshed and the location came up. It was no more than an hour away.
The proximity and the urgency of the story he needed to share made the trip too tempting, WITSEC rules be damned. He bummed a ride from a co-worker as soon as he could. They left early and were back in Greensburg by noon, John sullen and quiet on the way home.
He’d tried his best to convince Ben in his office, but it didn’t seem his former soigneur was going to help. It left John only one option. He called his WITSEC inspector and made an appointment to share what he knew. At least the video on the remaining USB thumb drive was in good condition. He’d become adept at hiding it, choosing a space under a loose floorboard the day he arrived.
He was anxious the night before the meeting. The last thing he wanted was to be hurled back into prison on some sort of technicality. He tossed and turned until settling into a deep sleep after 2am, oblivious to the quiet crunch of a C-rake lock pick and the turn of his front door knob.
.....
John woke to the barrel of a Glock pistol shoved against his shoulder, the beam of a flashlight dancing across the bed.
“Wake up.”
John rolled over. The handgun and nine hundred lumens flashed in his eyes. “What’s going on?”
“Get dressed. You’re going for a ride.”
“What? Turn that light off.”
“Get up. That’s the last time I’m going to tell you.”
John scooted to the edge of the bed. “Who are you?”
“A friend or a nightmare. Your decision. Like I said, it’s time for a ride. Put on your bike gear.”
John’s head cleared. He stood and didn’t ask any more questions -- the intruder wasn’t playing a game. He went to the dresser and pulled on his lone pair of bike shorts, then picked up his socks and cycling shoes.
The man tossed him a T-shirt hanging from a chair. “Slow and steady. Head out the front door.”
A panel van waited outside. Its cargo door was open and a driver sat behind a tinted window. John’s Bianchi was already stowed in the back. He got in and sat beside it while the man with the gun jumped in after him and slid the door shut. The van pulled away from the curb, the Glock held steady toward John’s chest.
John didn’t understand. Why the bike? If they were going to kill him, they’d have shot him in bed. Did they know about the video?
“Where are we going?”
The man wagged his gun. “Shut up. Just sit there.”
Maybe it was something else? Someone he’d testified against returning to settle a score? A midnight visit from one of the cartels? There were too many enemies to keep straight and it would do no good to ask. He went quiet, focusing his eyes beyond his captor, out the back windows.
He could tell by the streetlights and the storefronts they were headed south on State Highway 119 over I-70 toward Uniontown, and that they turned east on Pechin Parkway after the county fairgrounds. Even in the dark it was easy to track the route. He’d ridden it several times over the six weeks he’d lived in Greensburg.
A mile further and the van came to a stop in front of a deserted cement plant. The driver got out and walked away. In the distance, John heard a chain rattle and a gate swing open. There was a whistle back toward the van.
The man with the gun turned on his flashlight and slid open the door. “Put on your shoes.”
John did as he was told and followed him outside.
“Forgetting something?”
“What?”
“Your bike. You can ride home from here.”
A car’s headlights appeared around the bend as John stepped back to the van. The car slowed as it passed and the man lowered his gun. John thought to jump into the road, but it went by before he had the chance.
The man was undeterred. “Get your bike and ride.”
John pulled the Bianchi forward and onto the ground. He spun it around and climbed on. The man turned off his flashlight and stepped close, the scene illuminated only by the van’s taillights. John noticed his captor was at least four inches shorter than himself.
“One more thing.”
The man leaned in and thrust a five-inch tactical knife through John’s right side, even with his stomach. It penetrated his abdomen, slicing his liver, spleen and tearing through his intestines. John screamed and collapsed to his handlebars, the knife held hard inside him, the pain both sharp and dull. The man wrapped his other arm around John’s back and held him steady.
John gasped, his gut burning and blood starting to spill. “Why?” The man yanked the knife out and dropped it to the ground. He grabbed his gun and pressed it to the back of John’s skull. “Justice for the people you murdered. Now ride home. If you make it, you’ll live.”
John didn’t move, blood flowing down his side. He tried to speak but fluid pooled in his throat.
The man gave him a shove. “Ride!”
There was nothing left to do. John pushed off and clicked into his pedals, his right hand pressing his wound and tears streaming down his face. The Glock followed his every move.
Fifty yards, one hundred yards and forward. John was delirious and confused with only his God-given talent keeping him upright. He thought of Greensburg, his new home. The stone steps, the beer. His new job, his new life. There was no way he’d make it. A cry for help on the main road was his only hope. But there had to be separation. He had to get away. He ignored the wound and tried to stand from his saddle, pouring what little he had left into the bike.
He’d made it almost a half mile before he sensed headlights gaining on him, the whine of a powerful engine closing in. John tried to swerve, but the blood loss caused his reactions to slow. The empty cement truck hit him square at forty miles an hour, its barrel spinning as the undercarriage bounced over him like an animal in the roadway. John’s last thought was of his old college roommate, a final prayer sent skyward that Ben Samuels would do the right thing.
 
Chapter Three
Tuesday, July 16th
The courier service delivered the red envelope to the front security desk of the Robert F. Kennedy Justice Building during the lunch hour. It was examined and time-stamped by the Mail Services Risk Assessment Team and hand-delivered to Susan Rivas, the United States Solicitor General’s Confidential Secretary. The unusual color caught her attention. She found it odd, a short note marked “For the immediate eyes of the United States Solicitor General only,” with no return address. Deciding it was warranted and straightening her skirt, Susan took it through the whitewood archway into the solicitor’s office.
She found Walter Peterson alone and busy, three hours into a session of summer prep for the upcoming autumn Supreme Court term. He’d finished the lunch she’d brought him from the executive dining room and there’d been no other interruptions since the morning’s staff meeting. He glanced up as she passed the flag array by the chesterfield sofas, coming forward to his desk. Handed the envelope, he emptied it and read the half-sheet scrap inside.
“I am an LDS Institute Director. I know what you are doing. Meet tonight at 10pm, 5300 West Cedar, Bethesda, Maryland.”
Susan stood silent, watching him turn it over and look back at the envelope. He found a similar result -- there was nothing indicating authorship outside shaky penmanship. He looked at her and again at the letter. “Who delivered this?”
“Mail Services brought it to my desk. Any idea what it’s about?”
“No.”
“Anything you’d have me do?”
“…Nothing. I’ll check it through Chris later.”
“Are you sure? I could have him come over, maybe the FBI as well?”
“I’ll take care of it.”
Susan was used to the abruptness. She knew to be on her toes around the solicitor. “Alright. Anything else for me?”
Peterson re-read the short message and then laid it down. “Has SCOTUS gotten back about October’s schedule? Everyone was concerned this morning. The session is still three months away, but it’s normal to have a draft docket by now.”
Susan shook her head. The Supreme Court’s administrative officer had told her it would be several more days. Peterson grunted and adjusted his reading glasses. “What about the Penitentiary Commission? I’ve made a couple site visits as the attorney general requested. If I’m going again it needs to be soon, before we ramp to full speed for the fall.”
“I’ll check that for you. The calendar has a Commission meeting next week. You know, the AG isn’t expecting you to attend everything as you’re doing this ad hoc.”
“All hands on deck, Susan. Besides, it gets me out and around the country. Boots on the ground, so to speak.”
“Yes sir.”
He nodded and returned to his files.
Susan had to hide a half-grin as she walked away. The idea of her venerable Mormon boss a ‘boots on the ground’ anything was farcical. Bald, obese and unfit for any activity requiring sturdy shoes, she’d never met a man more behind the desk, blue blood and patrician. A woman on her block was LDS and Susan knew her to be the sweetest neighbor around. She couldn’t imagine Peterson neighbor to anyone.
She glanced back from the doorway. Peterson had picked up the phone and was starting a call, the anonymous note in his hand. Susan turned to her workstation and watched the PBX screen. Deputy U.S. Marshal Chris Powers’ line went active five seconds later.
 
Chapter Four
Ben found more time on his hands than he’d anticipated after watching the courier deliver his note. He drove north out of downtown to the small Bethesda warehouse he’d chosen online. Arriving, he found it unfenced and back from the main road, secluded with hills and heavy trees bordering two sides. He circled it and set the stage. Light pole placements were noted, as was the fact there were no exterior cameras in place. He marked a corner spot to park and patted himself on the back as he left. It seemed perfect.
He continued north on Old Georgetown Road through DC suburbia and past a large shopping area. His Honda Accord then merged east onto the Capital Beltway. He smiled as mecca quickly appeared on his left. Though half-hidden in the dense summer green, it stood elegant and soaring above the landscape. The Washington, DC LDS Temple, the single-most recognizable Mormon setting on the American east coast. He exited Georgia Avenue and was soon in the busy parking lot, the spired white building in front of him.
Ben felt no inclination to go inside. It was enough to be on the grounds, even in the summer heat. It brought the first bit of peace since his visit with John. He found a garden bench across from his car, walked over and sat down. Bowing his head, he offered a short prayer for guidance and help -- even a sign that he was on the right path.
That the solicitor general was also LDS and had probably sat on the same bench loomed large in his mind. Walter Peterson was one of the most famous Latter-day Saints in the world, Mormons looking to him with much the same esteem as the senior leaders of their church. A cult of personality existed, his name mentioned in the same breath with Hall of Fame LDS athletes, entertainers and politicians. Few Latter-day Saints were held in higher regard. A surprise appointment by an unconventional president three years prior, Peterson’s Senate confirmation had been can’t-miss television for Mormons across the country. His legal acumen and forceful confidence impressed everyone and left his church community beaming with pride.
Peterson being such a prominent member of his church had been the tipping point in Ben’s decision to confront him. As the good solicitor surely desired protection of his image and standing, Ben reasoned he’d be amenable to such a discussion. The hope was for a brother-to-brother recognition, some sort of ease-the-throttle-back, get everything on the table, save-face. Foolish? Yes. Dangerous? Maybe. He at least took comfort that Mormons were well-known for such admirable foolishness on occasion.
An older, Sunday-dressed couple turned toward him, smiling and holding hands as they walked. Ben shook his head and sighed. His own marriage was far from a mirror image. As Peterson had risen, he’d gone the other way. Purpose had eluded him since his demotion and transfer to West Virginia, his wife feeling the effects even more so. Though they’d both fought depression and a sense of futility in their new surrounds, Marge had isolated herself to the point their relationship had started to strain -- Ben’s ‘what can I do to help’ met too-often with a cold stare and the covers pulled tight.
The couple approached. Ben realized he had no tie on and probably looked out of place. He compensated by standing to greet them.
The woman smiled. “Such a beautiful day to be at the temple.”
“Yes Ma’am.”
She stopped and pointed to cars across the parking lot. “The different license plates are always so interesting.”
“Excuse me?”
“Look at that row. People here today from Virginia, Ohio, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Massachusetts. I love that. Summer vacation must have them on the road -- so nice they chose to come to the House of the Lord along their way.”
Ben played along, pointing at his car backed into its spot. “What about that one?”
The woman looked and then turned back, perplexed. “I have no idea, it doesn’t have a front plate.”
Ben smiled. “That’s mine. I live in West Virginia where front plates aren’t required.”
The woman laughed. “We’ll include you in our count anyway.”
Keen to beat the heat, the woman’s husband patted her arm and looked toward Ben. “You have a nice day.”
Ben stood staring at the cars as they walked off. It was interesting commentary, something to share with his students back at the institute in Morgantown. He thought of all the license plates he’d owned over the course of his life. Washington, Arizona, Florida, Texas, Utah and now West Virginia. He’d have a nice display for his garage had he kept them.
Then, an instant realization of a flaw. Ben looked down the walk at the elderly couple and back at his car. If Peterson had his plate checked, he’d discover who he was. Ben wasn’t ready for that. If John Southland had been correct, Peterson was a menace. The short-lived peace in his heart evaporated. He felt the entire impetuous idea unravel, the grand confrontation less noble by the second.
You’re going to get yourself killed.
He returned to his car with his shoulders low and exited the lot without another thought toward the temple. He headed west, toward the shopping centers on Old Georgetown Road, intent on lunch and little else.
 
Chapter Five
June 1st, 1990
CES Area Director Oscar Trejo waited for his boss on the eighth floor of the LDS Church Office Building. He was off the clock and self-conscious minus a suit, visiting Salt Lake City on a vacation day to attend a family function. He hadn’t planned on the summons and was glad he at least had a white shirt and tie to wear.
Ushered into Associate Director Ronald Hayes’s large office by a secretary and left alone, Trejo found an oversized U.S. map propped on an easel beside the desk. Multi-colored stickpins were placed in college towns throughout the eastern United States. Trejo figured they were potential sites for the new Regional Select Institutes, knowing Church Educational System leadership had appointed Hayes to oversee the project. He was studying the map when the Associate Director entered and shut the door. Trejo pointed at the stick pins and spoke with his usual candor. “Are these what I think they are?”
Hayes smiled. “If by ‘these’ you mean potential Regional Select Institute sites, the answer is yes.”
“May I speak freely, sir?”
“I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
Trejo ran his index finger down the right side of the map. “I don’t like it.”
“What’s not to like?”
“These ‘RSI’s. I don’t like the concept or the philosophy. Are we really going to encourage these students to not come to Brigham Young University or institute programs in Utah, urging them instead to stay back east for college?”
“That’s the general idea, yes.”
Hayes scooted past Trejo and sat down at his desk. He opened the center drawer and retrieved a paper-clipped set of four index cards. Trejo continued as he moved to a chair opposite his boss. “Why would we do that? How is it better than bringing them out west? Many of the eastern programs have less than a hundred students.”
Hayes took a deep breath and looked across the desk. “How are you, Oscar?”
Trejo grinned, realizing he’d jumped ahead. “Fine, sir.”
“Wife and kids?”
“Everyone’s good. They’re all waiting for me at my in-laws’. We’re attending a high school graduation tonight.”
“Who’s graduating?”
“My wife’s sister.”
“Wow. I know you’re the youngest of our Area Directors, but to have a sister-in-law graduating from high school is quite something. How old are you?”
“I’m thirty-eight, my wife’s thirty-three. She’s the oldest in her family, with eight brothers and sisters. This is the last of them.”
“Well, I hope you enjoy yourselves. When are you heading back to Arizona?”
“Tomorrow. The family will stay here a while, now that school’s out. How did you know I was even in Utah?”
“Simple. I called your office in Phoenix and found you were on the road. Your secretary gave me the number where you were staying.” “How can I help?”
“For starters, let me address your point about low enrollment at our eastern institutes. What about the students there now, Oscar? Don’t you think they would appreciate extra resources and more LDS kids joining them?”
Trejo ignored the logic. “It seems like we’re conducting an experiment which might hurt more than help in the long run.”
“The long run is why we’re doing this. The idea is to foster organic, regional growth. LDS students staying in their home areas to attend college, meeting others doing the same, marrying and settling where they’re from. Growing the church that way.”
“Sounds pie in the sky.”
Hayes shuffled his cards. “What about your Arizona Area? If I’m not mistaken, you have over five thousand Mormon students attending non-LDS colleges and their adjacent institutes down there. Why not shoot for those numbers elsewhere? Ignoring these sorts of things not only stalls the growth of our institutes outside the inter-mountain west, it very well hinders the growth of the church in those regions as well.
How many of these kids who come to Utah wind up going back to where they’re from after they graduate? And what happens to those areas of the church when they leave? Like a leaky faucet, a constant drip of strength exiting the very places that not only need them, but the spots these young folks call home. And where do they wind up? They either stay here, where we already have an overflowing strength, or land in a third place with no roots and a yearning to move yet again. No Oscar, I don’t see it like you seem to anymore. Fortifying institute programs to retain many of these students in their home areas is what we should be doing, and these RSI’s are just what the doctor ordered.”
Hayes doled out the index cards across his desk. Trejo sat forward and watched. College Station, Texas; Gainesville, Florida; Blacksburg, Virginia and East Lansing, Michigan. Texas A&M, the University of Florida, Virginia Tech and Michigan State -- already four of the largest institute programs east of the Rocky Mountains. Hayes looked up and continued. “These are the four we’ve decided to start with and the groundwork has already been laid. Marketing materials have been drafted and Church architects have visited the sites, submitting plans to renovate and expand each one. I now have to recommend additional staff, including full-fledged assistant directors at each location.”
Hayes picked up a card and got to his point. “Tell me about this fellow you have in Mesa, Ben Samuels.”
“Samuels? Great guy with a full head of steam.”
“So I’ve heard. He has a Master’s in Higher Education and was baptized in an institute font. If his interview goes well, I’m thinking of sending him here….”
Hayes handed Trejo the card in his hand. Trejo took it, reading it aloud. “Gainesville, Florida. The University of Florida.”
He turned serious. “Well, if you’re going to do this, I think Ben’s perfect. Amazing really. How did you hear about him?”
“He’s inquired about moving from our high school seminary programs to the collegiate institutes.”
Trejo smiled. “He’s an interesting case study. A convert who never attended high school seminary, now teaching it and doing quite well. He’s been in Mesa several years and seems content, but it wouldn’t surprise me if bigger things were ahead for Ben.”
“He grew up in Spokane, Washington, right?”
“I think so. He joined the church while attending Washington State University, in Pullman. He’s told me that. His wife introduced him to the missionaries, back when they were dating.”
“I look forward to meeting him.”
“I have a different idea for you. If you’re serious about this ‘homegrown’ business, why not assign someone who happens to be from Florida to be the new assistant director? Send that person home and leave Samuels in Arizona. We’d hate to lose him.”
Hayes put his elbows on his desk and leaned forward. “Excellent question, Oscar. It goes to my larger point. We’ve actually looked into that, at all four sites. Would you believe we don’t have a single qualified CES employee who hails from Texas, Florida, Virginia or Michigan? Think about that -- it’s a telling fact. Twenty or thirty years from now, we hope to find a different circumstance. Maybe you’ll be sitting in my chair by then. If you are, I hope you’ll find more options than I have today.”
Trejo wasn’t ready to quit. “I still don’t like it, sir. As a parent, I’ll do everything I can to get my kids to one of our church colleges and would only consider something like an RSI as a last resort. I wouldn’t even want them at the major Arizona universities attending the institute programs I oversee. I want them here in Utah, where we’re at our best.”
“I understand, and we’re not interested in weakening the church schools. This will be an additional, fortified resource to work in tandem with what we have here in the inter-mountain west. Let’s not forget, these institute programs already exist. Our goal is to strengthen them, create a few gems to shine bright and give the LDS students from these areas another solid option to consider.” “What about financial considerations? One of the great benefits of church colleges is the tithing-supported low cost. Certainly BYU is a cheaper option than the University of Florida.”
“We’re working on that as well. As part of the roll-out, LDS endowments and scholarships will be set up and encouraged at each RSI site. We’ll be asking the membership to consider donations. It’ll defray the cost differences and further enhance the visibility and viability of the programs.”
“Do you think you’ll get much in the way of contributions?”
“I’m confident we will. These programs might be small, but they’ve had their successes over the years. We’ll be reaching out to the alumni, as well as the general membership. I believe it will work, and work well.”
“Florida would be lucky to have someone like Ben Samuels. Why not send him to Washington, where he’s from? I’m sure he’d love that. I visited his classroom a couple months ago. He had a Washington State banner on his wall.”
Hayes reached over and retrieved the card from his area director. “No, it’s east of the Rockies where the interest lies. If these four programs are successful, we’ll expand from there. As you’ve said, it seems Ben will do well wherever he’s assigned. At least for now, it’s Florida that’s in the cards for him.”
 
Chapter Six
Tuesday, July 16th
Ben was still smoking when the black SUV entered the parking lot and disappeared to the other side of the warehouse. Opening his door, he cursed himself for being so dramatic with the cigarettes. He’d smoked for three hours straight, more in remembrance of a life long passed than any desire to calm his nerves. He got out, stubbed his last one and threw the almost-empty pack in a nearby dumpster.
Enough of that.
He took a deep breath and headed the other way around, rehearsing what he would say.
I know what you did. I know what you are doing…
The SUV’s yellow fog lamps brightened his path as he turned the final corner, the vehicle fifty yards ahead. A man was standing outside the open driver’s door. He reached in and flipped on the high beams, assaulting Ben’s eyes with a blinding white.
“That’s far enough.”
Ben stopped and raised his hands halfway as the man came toward him. He was short and thin, quite the opposite from what Ben knew of Walter Peterson’s large build. The man’s suit, tie and confident gait identified him as a deputy or agent, a man with a badge and a gun. He approached, looked Ben over and then patted him down, spinning him around to double-check.
“What’s your name and what do you want with the Solicitor General?”
“I need to speak with him.”
“I need to see some ID.”
“I’d rather not disclose who I am. Is he with you?”
“Did you write that note?”
Ben started to answer but saw another man climb out of the SUV, shutting the door behind him. “Chris, it’s ok, send him over.” Chris forced a smile. “I guess you win. Follow me.”
Peterson’s thickset frame cast a wide shadow in the dim light. Tall and overweight to a fault without a hair on his head, he resembled a former athlete who’d let himself go, his glory years decades behind him. He was dressed to match his guard, but as they came to the passenger side of the SUV, Ben could tell his suit and tie were from a much better store -- the United States Solicitor General before him.
Ben hesitated then stepped close, an image of his dead friend appearing in his mind. Peterson wrinkled his nose and leaned back on his heels. “Who are you and what’s this cloak and dagger business about?”
Ben glanced at Chris, astonished he’d made it to the moment at hand. He turned and looked Peterson in the eye. “Never mind who I am. I’m here about James Montano.”
Peterson raised his eyebrows. “Who?”
“I’m sure you know the name.”
Peterson scraped his shoe across the asphalt. “The note you wrote this morning. You’re an institute director for the Church? Where?”
“Yes, I work for the Church out here. Telling you that was the only way I could get this meeting. But I’m not here to talk about me. I want to talk about James Montano.”
“Again, I don’t know anyone by that name. To be honest, this is quite strange. If you aren’t going to tell me more about you, this little waste of my time is over.”
Peterson turned and reached for his door. Ben gathered himself and brought forward his case. “I think you killed him…. And if you did, I know he’s not the only one.”
His fist on the handle, Peterson stared at the reflection in the window and seemed lost in thought. He then straightened and swung back, his demeanor cold, his voice that of a seasoned prosecutor. “First, would that be cigarettes I smell? Mormon institute director? I think not.”
Ben tried to reply but was cut off.
“Second, I have no idea what you’re talking about and it’s obvious you don’t know what you’re doing here. Third, though I haven’t had the privilege of an introduction, you seem to know who I am. I would think that might give you pause. I know nothing of a ‘James Montano.’ I suggest you slink back to your car and head home before you find yourself in serious trouble.”
Ben pressed as Chris stepped forward to intercede. “James ‘Jimmy’ Montano, AKA John Southland, witness protection case WS436C. Found dead in a ditch three days ago, south of Greensburg, Pennsylvania. He came to me last week, told me everything and gave me proof.”
Peterson’s bald head cocked to the right, his eyes widening at the mention of John’s real name. He dropped his hand from the SUV’s door and started toward Ben, raising his chin like a prizefighter sizing up an opponent.
Ben caught his breath and stepped back. Chris grabbed his arm and shuffled him off, letting him go in front of the headlights.
“Stand still with your hands where I can see them. Stay like that until we leave.”
Awash in the light, Ben watched as Chris went back behind Peterson, who stood glaring his way. He opened the rear passenger door and tugged on the solicitor general’s coat.
“Come on boss, let’s go.”
Peterson sneered and shook his head, then turned and climbed back into the vehicle. Chris retreated to his driver’s seat and put the SUV into reverse. Ben stayed put, his nerves shot and mind racing, the taste of something much worse than cigarettes in his mouth.
.....
Peterson pulled out his phone and sent a text to Neck, stationed nearby in a stand of hackberry trees.
-Stand down.
He looked out the window and up the hill, catching a glimpse of his lanky security assistant lowering his sniper rifle. Peterson then turned toward the windshield and took stock of the so-called institute director. Just under six feet tall and waspy white, he had a pot belly, balding salt and pepper hair, cheap shoes, wire-framed glasses and a skittish demeanor. The typical build of a fellow Mormon in his mid-fifties. Though he resisted the thought, he had to admit -- every box was checked.
“Proof? What proof could he have?”
He ordered Chris to step on it and they were gone.
 
END OF EXCERPT....
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2020.06.28 01:07 startaquizbowlteam Quizbowl Competition Names: A Brief Census and Guide

One consistent theme of posts in this subreddit is that there's no consistent name for "quizbowl"-like activities around the country. There are many regional variations on quizbowl and lots of different names given to quizbowl, which often results in some confusion. Thus, here is a brief overview of each of these names (feel free to add your own in the comments!) so that people can better understand where they come from and to what extent they comport with quizbowl more generally.
Note that within all of these different names for quizbowl, the quality of the questions and competitions varies considerably. What matters is less what the competition is called and more what the format and the questions are.
One of the biggest differences is the degree to which questions in different quizbowl competitions are pyramidal--that is, are constructed to avoid misleading players and to fairly distinguish between players with different levels of knowledge. You can read more about the concept of pyramidality here, but do note that some companies and places that claim to be "pyramidal" are not actually pyramidal in terms of how they write their questions.
Everything here is just my opinion, of course.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Quizbowl or Quiz Bowl: this is the most common name for quizbowl competitions in general. Sometimes you might see "Academic Quiz Bowl" to signify that quizbowl is more academic than just trivia. Regardless, most of the time quiz bowl is some kind of buzzer-based competition in which players use a buzzer to signal when they're ready to answer a question. The extent to which a given quizbowl league or format is pyramidal though varies widely depending on the question writeprovider.
Academic Bowl: This is another variation on the name "quizbowl" that varies a bit by region, but overall doesn't seem to be consistently in one area or another.
Academic Challenge: Common in New Jersey, Ohio, Wyoming, and various smaller areas like Berks County, PA. Rules differ dramatically between local formats, though in general these are often not pyramidal.
Academic Competition: Somewhat unique to Pennsylvania, with local counties sponsoring things like the Chester County Academic Competition.
Academic Decathlon: A separate company that operates a separate competition that consists more of taking tests on specific subjects, though there is a "Super Quiz" portion that is somewhat quizbowl-ish. Pretty much a different thing entirely and not quizbowl.
Academic League: Specific to a few counties like San Diego CA and Salem NJ but occasionally used in other areas. Often not pyramidal, though some specific academic leagues in San Diego have adopted pyramidal questions.
Academic Olympics: Used in Reno, NV and Horry County, SC as well as a few other areas. Often includes a quizbowl-ish portion, but may have other events as well.
Brain Bowl: Sometimes used in Florida, though it can also refer to specific competitions related to the human brain.
Hi-Q: A relatively ancient (dating back to 1948) form of quizbowl that hasn't changed much since. Local to a few areas where a certain paper mill company was based (Green Bay WI, Delaware County PA, Northern Seattle, and Northern Alabama).
It's Academic: A long-running TV quiz show with its own unique format. Used to be in a lot of cities, now limited mostly to the DC area.
Knowledge Bowl: Common in Minnesota, the Dakotas, Colorado, Washington State, and some other places like the Mid-South. Usually uses questions from Academic Hallmarks, though that may change as the company has changed ownership recently. Often not pyramidal and may have written tests in addition to buzzer-based rounds.
NAQT: NAQT is a specific question-writing company. It is not a specific format or type of question (a common misconception); NAQT questions can be used in a wide variety of formats. NAQT questions are always pyramidal, though they vary in length and difficulty depending on the specific type of set (some NAQT speed round questions can be 1-2 lines, though most used at weekend invitational tournaments are 3-4 lines).
National Academic League: Specific to Utah, Wichita, and some other areas. Has a rather out-of-date website. Is decidedly not pyramidal.
Quick Recall: Almost entirely a Kentucky-based name that comes from the Kentucky Governor's Cup competition. Quick Recall itself is slightly different than quizbowl and usually not as pyramidal, but sometimes this term is used to include any kind of buzzer-based competition in KY.
Scholastic Bowl: Used primarily in Illinois for the state competition and in Virginia for their state competition as well. As of 2020, Illinois and Virginia's state competitions are pyramidal.
Scholars Bowl: Tends to be most common in Kansas, Vermont, and the Deep South, though the formats greatly differ. Kansas Scholars Bowl is somewhat notorious as one of the most highly-regulated types of quizbowl in the country while Vermont and Alabama use NAQT questions with some small variations in format (i.e. like worksheets or different timing rules). [EDIT: as pointed out in the comments, this is also a very common name for quizbowl in Missouri]
Subject-Specific Quizbowl: here you have things like Certamen for Latin, Science Bowl, National Ocean Science Bowl, National History Bee and Bowl, etc. Each of these formats differs in their level of pyramidality as well--NHBB tends to be very pyramidal while Science Bowl continues to have multiple-choice question tossups that are pretty much the opposite of pyramidal.
Varsity Quiz: A long-running Las Vegas TV competition run by the Kiwanis.
Hope this helps clear things up for people; feel free to add more local formats too!
submitted by startaquizbowlteam to Quizbowl [link] [comments]


2020.06.13 23:51 ankit77 Advice moving 5 boxes cross country (24x24x24 inch, each under 50lbs)

Hi, I'm moving from San Francisco to Washington DC and have 5 boxes that are 24x24x24 inch, each weighing less than 50lbs. My moving dates are flexible and shipping speed does not matter at all for me. What's the cheapest and most reliable moving option I should consider for this job?
submitted by ankit77 to moving [link] [comments]


2020.06.08 14:22 rusticgorilla Lost in the Sauce: 5,000+ covid deaths a week with no end in sight

Welcome to Lost in the Sauce, keeping you caught up on political and legal news that often gets buried in distractions and theater… or a global health crisis.
I may do another protest/police-focused post this week, since it could not be included here.
Housekeeping:

Nominees and appointees

Fired-State Department Inspector General (IG) Steve Linick testified to Congress that he informed at least three top Pompeo aides that he was reviewing Pompeo and his wife’s use of government resources. Linick’s testimony undercuts Pompeo’s defense that he couldn’t have fired Linick in retaliation because he was unaware of what investigations the IG was pursuing.
  • Linick also told Congress that before he was fired, he had also submitted a formal document request for records related to Pompeo's and his wife's use of resources. Congressional committees have requested voluntary testimony from the three Pompeo aides. "There's more information we need," one of the lawmakers said. "If we are unable to obtain it voluntarily, it should be subpoenaed."
Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Chuck Grassley said he will block two of Trump’s nominees from confirmation until the administration explains watchdog firings... However, these two nominees - director of the National Counterterrorism Center and an undersecretary at the State Dept. - are relatively unimportant to Trump and are unlikely to spur action from the White House.
Trump’s appointee to the United States’ foreign aid agency has denounced liberal democracy and “our homo-empire.” The appointee, Merritt Corrigan, also wrote that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban is “the shining champion of Western civilization.”
The Senate confirmed Trump’s nominee Michael Pack to lead the agency that oversees Voice of America despite the fact that Pack’s nonprofit organization is being investigated for possible tax violations. The vote was 53-38, with eight Democratic caucus members not present and Sen. Manchin (D-WV) voting in Pack’s favor.

What is Congress up to?

The Senate Intelligence Committee approved a measure that would require presidential campaigns to report offers of foreign election influence to federal authorities… The committee adopted the measure behind closed doors in a classified setting, adding it to the Intelligence Authorization Act, a bill setting policy for the intelligence community. Senate Republicans, however, are preparing to remove the provision from the bill when it heads to the Senate floor.
  • Sen. Warner has repeatedly tried to pass the bill in the Senate, but it's been blocked by Republicans, including Sen. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee. After she blocked the bill in June 2019, calling it a "blatant political stunt," Trump tweeted his appreciation for her efforts.
Senate Foreign Relations Cmte. Chairman Jim Risch (R-ID) has abandoned efforts to get Pompeo to testify in a routine annual budget hearing… Risch has tried for months to persuade Pompeo to testify but has given up so as to preserve “political capital,” he reportedly said.
  • TO BE CLEAR: Republicans have given up on even the pretense of standard oversight. Sen. Risch is rubber-stamping everything from the White House in order to keep Trump happy.
The House Judiciary Committee has lined up whistleblowers to testify about alleged political interference inside the Justice Department as AG Barr continues to rebuff efforts by the panel to reschedule testimony he committed to in March. The whistleblower hearing has yet to be formally scheduled.
House Judiciary Cmte. Chairman Jerry Nadler has introduced legislation to cut $50 million from the DOJ’s General Administration account, which funds the Attorney General’s personal office… Nadler says the bill, which is unlikely to pass the Republican-controlled Senate, is a response to “continued defiance of Congress and improper politicization of the Department of Justice.”
  • Nadler: “The American people deserve answers from Mr. Barr about actions the Department has taken to harass states during the coronavirus epidemic, his improper interference in cases against President Trump’s political allies, and much more. Because the Attorney General refuses to appear before Congress to provide those answers, we must now use our budgeting authority to compel answers and to reign in his deplorable behavior.”
Senate Republicans authorized Homeland Security Cmte. Chairman Ron Johnson to issue a wide range of subpoenas as part of an investigation into the origins of the Russia probe and allegations of wrongdoing by top Obama administration officials. The Senate Judiciary Cmte. is scheduled to authorize Chairman Lindsey Graham to similarly issue dozens of subpoenas this week.
  • Graham's subpoena authorization covers 53 officials, while Johnson's names 35 individuals. Of those, there's an overlap of two-dozen names including John Brennan, James Clapper, James Comey, Lisa Page, Peter Strzok, and Susan Rice.
The GOP continue to push a Biden-Ukraine conspiracy, but last week Ukrainian prosecutors announced they found no evidence of wrongdoing on the part of Hunter Biden.
Former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein testified before the Senate Judiciary Cmte. last week about the origins of the Russia probe… The hearing was not newsworthy, with Rosenstein refusing to be pinned down on anything. “He both meekly defended the investigation and meekly defended the president’s conduct with respect to the investigation—and, in order to do the latter, he, like Barr, overread the degree to which the investigation exonerated the president.”

The courts

D.C. Circuit sets a hearing on Michael Flynn's petition to force the district judge on his case to grant DOJ's motion to dismiss the prosecution for June 12.
  • The Justice Department is pressing forward with its criminal case against a former business partner of Michael Flynn, Bijan Rafiekian. The filing makes several mentions of Flynn’s integral role in the work that led to the two foreign-agent-related felony charges against Rafiekian and maintains the government’s position that Flynn was a co-conspirator in his business partner’s crimes — a curious stance as the government seeks to drop the criminal case it brought against Flynn more than two years ago.
The D.C. Court of Appeals affirmed that the White House unlawfully suspended the press credentials of Playboy Magazine reporter Brian Karem… The three-judge panel ruled that the suspension violated Karem’s constitutional rights because the White House had no written rules or advance notice about what would constitute unprofessional behavior that could temporarily cost him his press pass.
The DOJ has formally asked the Supreme Court to overturn a lower court decision granting House Democrats access to redacted grand jury materials from Mueller’s investigation…
The Trump administration has asked the Supreme Court to make it legal to ban same-sex couples from adopting… The DOJ argued that adoption agencies should be allowed to turn away same-sex couples “because it adheres to the belief that marriage is the union of a man and a woman”. Throughout the brief, the department argues that religious freedom must be protected above all else.
A former staffer on Trump's 2016 campaign has filed a new challenge against Trump's use of nondisclosure agreements, asking a New York court to rule in a lawsuit that the agreements drawn up by the campaign are "null, void and unenforceable."
Judge in Jeffrey Epstein grand jury case has ties to those with a stake in outcome… Krista Marx, the Palm Beach chief judge who also heads a panel that polices judicial conduct, has potential conflicts of interest involving three prominent players embroiled in the Epstein sex-trafficking saga: a state attorney, a sheriff, and a former state attorney.

Voting and elections

Both Trump and his press secretary committed voter fraud using residential addresses on their registrations that were not their residences. Kayleigh McEnany cast Florida ballots in 2018 using her parents’ address in Tampa, even though she lived in Washington, D.C., and held a New Jersey driver’s license. Trump cast a Florida ballot this year using a business address in Palm Beach, where he had promised the town government he would not live.
Derek Chauvin, the Minneapolis ex-cop accused of killing George Floyd, allegedly voted illegally in two Florida elections. “While living in Minnesota, working there, paying taxes there, Derek Chauvin cannot claim residency in Orange County,” a Florida candidate for election supervisor writes.
Texas appeals court blocked a lower court ruling that would have allowed people to mail in their ballots to avoid being exposed to the coronavirus. This won’t be the last word in the matter - the courts have been going back and forth on the matter for the past two months.
A judge ruled that Tennessee must give all of its registered voters the option to cast ballots by mail during the coronavirus pandemic. The ruling is likely to be appealed.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court will try to decide whether to remove 129,000 voters from the rolls… The justices declined last Monday to immediately take voters off the rolls and may not rule on the case before the election.
Good read: Stacey Abrams op-ed: I Know Voting Feels Inadequate Right Now. “Voting will not save us from harm, but silence will surely damn us all.”

Coronavirus

America is still experiencing a minimum of 5,000 confirmed deaths from the coronavirus per week, with many states experiencing spikes in cases over the past few days. Charts,
  • For example, Florida has had the most new cases in the last 4 days of any 4 days in the whole outbreak (and that’s not taking into account that the state is undercounting). Texas has seen the most new cases of any 5 days during the outbreak, as has Arizona. Utah, California, Arkansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee also have increasing cases. NYT and JHU.
ICUs across the country are pretty full. In 12 states, plus DC, more than 70% of beds in ICUs are occupied. CDC. Rising ICU bed use “a big red flag.”
Amid a shortage of swabs for COVID tests, the factory Trump visited in Maine will have to throw out all swabs produced during the president’s visit, likely due to Trump and associates refusing to wear face masks. Nearly a third of Maine nursing homes reported last month they had no nasal swabs to collect specimens.
Local health officials relied on the CDC to track Americans returning from China in February, but the data was flawed. “Just let them go,” CDC told local officials frustrated by the inability to track potential early spreaders.
The US has failed to spend more than 75 percent of the American humanitarian aid that Congress provided three months ago to help overseas victims of the virus. “Little to no humanitarian assistance has reached those on the front lines of this crisis in the world’s most fragile context,” executives at 27 relief organizations wrote to the aid agency’s acting administrator, John Barsa, in a letter dated Thursday.
How a St. Petersburg company with no history in medical supplies won a $10 million coronavirus contract. The Trump administration handed out large contracts without much vetting. As a result, a Florida-based company was granted a contract in the first week of its existence.
A section of the House’s coronavirus relief bill championed by Virginia Dem Gerry Connolly contains billions for defense contractors. The provision would cover executive compensation and other perks for defense and intel contractors. The legislation’s wording mirrors what an industry group proposed.
Former Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) has booked his first lobbying client, a company promising a COVID-19 cure and led by a California businessman who’s been collaborating with Rudy Giuliani on a documentary on Joe Biden and Ukraine.

Miscellaneous

Trump ordered nearly 10,000 US troops to leave Germany. The move is the latest twist in relations between Berlin and Washington, which have often been strained during Trump’s presidency.
In another move that is sure to make Putin happy, Trump pressed to invite Russia to this year’s G7 summit. Trump and Putin spoke by phone last Monday and reportedly discussed the meeting. Other members of G7 have spoken out against the idea.
  • Reminder: Last month, Trump announced the US is withdrawing from the Open Skies treaty, another move that allows Russia more freedom to operate as a rogue power.
A federal judge ruled against the Interior Dept. in its attempt to disestablish the reservation land of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe… “The DC District Court righted what would have been a terrible and historic injustice by finding that the Department of the Interior broke the law in attempting to take our land out of trust,” said Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Chairman, Cedric Cromwell.
A Twitter Account That Copies Trump's Tweets Word For Word Got Suspended Within 3 Days. Does Twitter have special rules for President Trump? Yes, and this account just proved it.
Civil rights leaders say they’re ‘disappointed and stunned’ after call with Facebook’s Zuckerberg and Sandberg… Zuckerberg gave “incomprehensible explanations” for not taking action against President Trump’s “looting ... shooting” post.
Environmental news:
  • Trump rule changes will allow Alaskan hunters to kill bear cubs, wolf pups in their dens.
  • The Trump administration moved forward Friday with plans to scale back a century-old law protecting most American wild bird species despite warnings that billions of birds could die as a result.
  • President Trump vowed Friday to open the nation’s only national monument in the Atlantic Ocean to commercial fishing. He signed a proclamation declaring the opening after attending a roundtable discussion with commercial fishermen in Bangor, Maine.
  • Trump signed an executive order instructing agencies to waive long-standing environmental laws to speed up federal approval for new mines, highways, pipelines and other projects given the current economic “emergency.” Critics say the move will disproportionately impact communities of color.
Immigration news:
  • Report finds ICE detention centre is using a disinfectant over 50 times a day that causes bleeding and pain
  • Homeland Security’s Inspector General Is Opening A Review Of The Department’s Treatment Of Pregnant Detainees. The announcement comes following BuzzFeed News’ report of a woman giving birth in a detention center near San Diego.
  • ICE special agents detain Floyd protester in NYC. "The fact that he's a man of Puerto Rican descent is really concerning because it raises questions about racial profiling," said Terry Lawson, of the Immigrant Defense Project.
  • The Trump Administration Said It Didn’t Change Policy To Deny Housing Loans To DACA Recipients. Emails Show Otherwise. New documents show that the Trump administration moved to block young undocumented immigrants from federal housing loans in 2018.
  • People are sawing through and climbing over Trump’s border wall. Now contractors are being asked for ideas to make it less vulnerable.
  • Supreme Court rules immigrants who fear torture can appeal deportations in court
  • Dozens Of Immigrant Families Who Were Separated At The Border Likely Shouldn't Have Been, An Internal Report Found
submitted by rusticgorilla to Keep_Track [link] [comments]


2020.05.06 06:03 assessment_bot [ Non-Fatal ] [ 04/24/2020 ] IAI 1125, Fort Lauderdale/ FL

On April 24, 2020, about 1520 eastern daylight time, an Israel Aircraft Industries 1125 Astra SP, Venezuelan registration YV3427, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport (FXE), Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The airline transport pilot, commercial copilot, and one passenger were not injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.
The pilot reported that he was conducting a takeoff on runway 27 with the intended destination of Simn Bolvar International Airport (CCS), Maiqueta, Venezuela. During the takeoff roll, at rotation speed, the airplane did not respond when the pilot pulled back on the control yoke. He tried to rotate again, and the airspeed was in excess of V1, about 130 knots. With no response, he performed a rejected takeoff with maximum braking and full reverse thrust. The airplane departed the end of runway 27, proceeded through the overrun, and into the grass beyond the runway. The airplane pivoted to the left and came to a stop in the grass, near the perimeter access road. The crew and passengers exited the airplane and were met by first responders.
Inspectors with the Federal Aviation Administration responded to the accident site and examined the wreckage. The nose and right main landing gear collapsed during the accident sequence and the airplane sustained substantial damage to the forward fuselage and right wing. The passenger cabin was loaded with cargo, which was offloaded and weighed. First responders observed fuel leaking from the right-wing fuel tank.
The wreckage was retained for further investigation. The airplane was equipped with a cockpit voice recorder; it was removed and shipped to the NTSB Vehicle Recorders Laboratory, Washington, DC for readout.
Category Data Category Data Category Data
Event Id: 20200427X70009 Investigation Type: Accident Accident Number: ERA20LA162
Event Date: 04/24/2020 Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL Country: United States
Latitude: 26.197222 Longitude: -80.170834 Airport Code: FXE
Airport Name: Fort Lauderdale Executive Injury Severity: Non-Fatal Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Aircraft Category: Airplane Registration Number: YV3427 Make: IAI
Model: 1125 Amateur Built: No Number of Engines: 2
Engine Type: Turbo Fan FAR Description: Part 91: General Aviation Schedule:
Purpose of Flight: Personal Air Carrier: Total Fatal Injuries:
Total Serious Injuries: Total Minor Injuries: Total Uninjured: 3
Weather Condition: VMC Broad Phase of Flight: TAKEOFF Report Status: Preliminary
Publication Date: 05/04/2020
http://www.ntsb.gov/_layouts/ntsb.aviation/brief.aspx?ev_id=20200427X70009
submitted by assessment_bot to NTSB_database [link] [comments]