South bend firefighters blues festival

22 Blue in 2022: 'THE QUICK LIST'

2023.05.31 19:00 Future_Vehicle_8307 22 Blue in 2022: 'THE QUICK LIST'

22 Blue in 2022: 'THE LIST'

Build Supermajorities of Democrats in the US House and US Senate

Here’s “22 Blue in 2022: ‘A Quick List’”:
  1. Florida 2. Ohio 3. Kansas 4. North Carolina 5. Kentucky 6. Arizona7. South Carolina 8. Georgia 9. Texas 10. Michigan 11. Nevada 12. Pennsylvania13. Missouri 14. Wisconsin 15. Iowa 16. Arkansas 17. Oklahoma 18. Indiana19. Colorado 20. Alabama 21. South Dakota 22. North Dakota
The 2022 Midterm Election is the most important midterm of our lifetime.Democrats must behave as if our lives depend on this midterm, because our future depends on the outcome.
”We the people” must deny the Republican party political power at every level of government for decades to come “in order to create a more perfect union.” With 48 States having some statewide contest(s), November 8th, 2022 is our best chance the Democrats will get to do that for the rest of this decade, at least.
”The List” encourages the election of a Democratic Supermajority in the US Senate in 2022. This is the best chance we will have to create a Democratic Supermajority in both Chambers of Congress for the remainder of this decade. This midterm could be a devastating loss for the democrats if good patriots ignore this election. If Americans of good conscience band together instead, we could could begin the exile of the Republican party from power, not for years, but for decades to come.
“The List” is a set of suggestions about where to focus collective activism today.
The election of Democratic Supermajorities to both chambers of the US Congress is the best outcome we can strive towards in the 2022 Midterm Election for many reasons. Among them: breaking the decade of gridlock in Congress, supporting President Biden’s agenda, and his re-election in 2024. My personal favorite is that this could commence the decades-long political banishment of the GOP from power, which the Republican Party so richly deserves.
The Republican party has proved itself treasonous on many levels. They are traitors to Humanity by supporting Trump. Traitors to the Nation for supporting Putin. Traitors to the government and betrayers of the constitution through their apologies for the 1/6/21 insurrection. To safeguard our country and the world, we must block the Republicans from power at the ballot box, at all levels of government, for at least a generation.
Political game playing may be inevitable among humans. Change the numbers, and then change the rules, if not the game. Cynical refusal to play at this time in history cedes power to NAZIs manipulated by Active Measures. That is a surrender to crypto fascism, not radical thinking, mere cynicism, or hipsterism.
In 2022, Patriots must unify to crush the Republican Party at the ballot box. We can defeat them in every State, at every level. We need the biggest turnout at the voting booth of any Midterm ever. We need to raise more money for candidates and organizations than we did during the entire 2020 campaign season if we are to accomplish this. We need to do this in the next six months.
This is what a “Blue Tsunami” REALLY looks like.
Electing a Democratic Supermajority in Congress is our hope for the future and retribution for America’s enemies. “22 Blue in 2022” is a roadmap to the beginning of that journey. “22 Blue in 2022” is our war plan. ”22 Blue in 2022” is our electoral battle cry. “22 Blue in 2022” is a way forward out of gridlock, a way to non-violently thwart those who would poison the body politic with their hate.
If we don’t try this hard in 2022, Trump will go unpunished and metastasize by 2024.
Resist In Power, my sisters, my brothers, and my others.
Resist Together, and elect a Congressional Supermajority in 2022!
See The “FULL 22 Bue in 2022 List”, With Dozens more links to the organizations and candidates that you can support to help Create a Democratic Congressional Supermajority in 2022!
National Democratic Organizations
Democratic National Committee (DNC): Directly to the DNC: DNC DIRECT DONATIONS
Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC): Directly to the DSCC: DSCC DIRECT DONATIONS
2022 Senate Republican Target Races:

Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC): www.dccc.orgDonate Directly to the DCCC: DCCC DIRECT DONATIONS
Democratic Governors Association (DGA): Directly to the DGA: DGA DIRECT DONATIONS
ALL Links are to party organizations, candidates, voter groups, voting information, and navigation within this site. There may be additions or subtractions over the course of the campaign. No portion of any donations to any of the candidates or organizations listed above goes to “22 Blue in 2022.” We take none of it! All donations through “22 Blue in 2022: The List” will be tax deductible unless otherwise noted at the destination site.
WITH THESE EXCEPTIONS: The “Donate” button at the top right of each page (“Donate” is Substack’s designation, not in my control) AND these links below, which each Support “22 Blue in 2022”:
Buy a $2.22 Weekly subscription and Become a “22 Blue in 2022” Precinct Captain Buy a $22.22 Monthly subscription and Become part of the “22 Blue in 2022” Squad Buy a $222.22 Annual Subscription and join our “22 Blue in 2022” Steering Committee Buy a $2222.22 Annual Subscription and Become a “22 Blue in 2022” Founder
Subscriptions/Donations to “22 Blue in 2022” ARE NOT Tax Deductible!
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2023.05.31 18:59 Big-Basis-2872 My journey so far

We had known each other for about 3 years before our first union. I’ve always had this magnetic pull towards her but we never had a lot of time together. My mother randomly invites me to this festival I felt iffy about going to but I went anyways. As i was packing before leaving, I felt that I was about to meet someone very special.
The day we re-met (10/2022) was when I arrived at the fest. I was relaxing at my moms camp and there she was, in all her radiance. I spoke out to her, we instantly hit it off, and evidently her and my mom became friends the day prior. I felt this undeniable feeling of love for her which threw me off with how early it was. Regardless, I knew what I was feeling was as true. The conversations we shared felt so aligned. I remember her mentioning that she already started building a relationship with her future daughter and for some reason her name really stuck out to me. As we were talking with my mom, my mom invites her to stay and help out with our land in Brazil. She replies ecstatically and shared how she’s been wanting to move to South America since she was a child.
After the festival, the universe managed to align us both to attend another festival the weekend after. On the first day of the fest, we both thought it would be a good idea to host a little changa ceremony (smokable ayahuasca) to start off the weekend grounded before everyone indulges in other substances.
The whole ceremony was beautiful. She was taking care of all the little things I wasn’t thinking about and vise versa. I served her last, she didn’t finish her bowl, and I had this intuitive feeling to take a hit of it as it was still ignited. Although it was a small hit, I was blasted in along with her. I saw her in the most beautiful radiant light. She was a goddess, the divine feminine; the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. She told me she saw me as a god, the divine masculine. We looked around and saw that our entire soul family was there cheering us on and elated that we were aware of our connection. I remember crying with joy as I returned, thanking the universe for that experience. Shortly after we held each other as we shared our first ‘I love you’.
Later that day as we were sitting and listening to the music, she turns to me and says “so we’re soul mates right?” and I replied with “we’re at least soul mates, no doubt about it”. I begin to see this giant energetic vortex coming down straight from the sky in between the both of us as she says “we’re twin flames”. It instantly all made sense, the unexplainable connections, synchronicities, and signs from the universe. She then hits me with “you have (daughters name’s) eyes”. I was never really interested in having kids but this made me feel happy and excited. The relationship was already so beautiful and divine, I can’t even imagine what an experience it would be to raise and teach and learn from her. I knew there would be nothing but growth, love and healing emanating from that relationship.
As time goes by I notice that she sometimes doubts that experience. I almost had to remind her or reassure her at times. I also noticed she wouldn’t always reply with “I love you” when I would say it to her. It never bothered me for a second. I honestly thought it was cute that she felt overwhelmed with the feelings. It took her quite some time to open up into that space of love and vulnerability but I don’t think she fully got to that space.
Things were progressing beautifully in my eyes. We were serving changa whenever and wherever it was needed; we were able to offer so much healing to our friends and family. My future son came to me and she deeply resonated with his name and shared that she had been seeing it everywhere for months and knew she’d meet someone important with that name. We were making all the right moves towards moving to Brazil to build a healing center and homestead there. She got further in Duolingo than I got (I grew up learning Portuguese lol), got her dog all ready for the trip with vaccines and a passport, sold her valuables. We had told all of our friends and family that we were moving for good; we just didn’t buy out tickets yet.
She sits me down to talk and shares how she wants to work on how she’s always running. She shares how she never lived in one place longer than 6 months growing up so she never had any long lasting friendships/relationships and if there was any problems, she never had to work on them. She said she needed some space to think and be alone. Four days goes by and she comes by my house after work with all my things and says that she believes it’s time for our romantic relationship to end. She says that I deserve someone who knows and that she wasn’t sure herself. I asked if she still believed that we were twin flames and she said she didn’t know if she believed that concept but that she knew we have a strong soul connection. She said she felt that our soul contract was completed and that we taught each other everything we needed to. She did say that she wanted to still be close and that I am her best friend. I didn’t resonate with any of what she said but I accepted things as they were. My whole reality was shattered. That was the last possible thing I expected to happen.
3 days after I joined a mushroom ceremony my mom was hosting. I felt very very deeply but it was needed. My son came to me to reassure me that everything was okay. He taught me to step more into my masculine and become more of the ‘lion’ im meant to be to fully support my family. My daughter came to me the days prior and has continued to come to me through dreams and meditation. I saw her face in detail the other night.
I had the opportunity to come to Brazil with my mom later that month and I took it. I’m currently in Brazil and I’m glad I took that step. I’ve been dreaming of her here. I saw her meditating right next to me around the fire with my family. I had a dream of us in a style of home that is commonly built in this area (I didn’t know until the other day). I have been noticing a lot though. I spun fire for the first time and I thought she’d be the first to support me since she introduced me and taught me a lot of what I know (she didn’t). I noticed she unfollowed me on Duolingo and had blocked me from all her story posts and mine. I notice emotions that come up that don’t feel like mine. I feel like it’s coming from her. I can literally feel her the minute she reads a text I send. I find it interesting because she normally gets over relationships much faster than this (not that it was a normal relationship).
It hurts me but at the same time I have so much compassion because I know she’s going through it. I know all of this is needed and I know she’s my twin. Nothing can shake that out of me but it feels like there’s two sides of me that are constantly conflicting each other. My ego wants an explanation and to understand but my soul knows things beyond my ego’s comprehension. All I can do now is work on myself and trust. I know I’m not being punished and I know the best is coming to me. The universe has helped me get this far and I trust it doesn’t end there. The journey is like no other. Wow
Any insight is much appreciated
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2023.05.31 18:52 Ok-Climate553 Sometimes the ending is deserving of the beginning

So I’ll start at the beginning : it was a warm sunny day in March as my best friend N and I logged our bags into her faded blue malibu. We started our 14 hour trip south to Panama. It was senior year of college and the taste of freedom mixed with a touch of sadness thick in the air. This was our last chance- last time to truly be young wild and free before adult life smacked us into monotonous reality.
We were both newly single and eager for the promise of beer and boys on the horizon. After a day and a half we made a pit stop in Georgia and then a few more hours passed and we were finally there. We dropped off our things and immediately went in search of liquor. Cars full of boys honked at us as they rolled by. “We should make a promise” N turned to me and said “that no matter who we meet what happens in Panama stays in Panama”. I pledged with a pinky promise to seal the deal.
Four years later I still talk to the guy I met there.
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2023.05.31 18:38 jendefer [PODCAST] Dicey Stories: Wesnoth tabletop roleplaying, story #10 out

Announcing a new story in the Wesnoth: Echoes of Invasion series from my tabletop roleplaying group's actual play podcast, Dicey Stories. The release of each episode’s audio is accompanied by a serialized, narrative write-up of the adventure. So if you like to read Wesnoth stories, we've got you covered. And if you like to listen to TTRPG actual plays, we've got that for you, too.
Closing Time – Tric and Heppa wind down their time in South Tower, enjoying the close of the Full Bloom festival, spending some time with their new friends, and—once they’ve dragged their feet long enough—finding an artifact for Thrandolil.
All 5 podcast episodes have been released, and all 18 scenes of the story are published. This arc contains spoilers for the Battle for Wesnoth campaigns Eastern Invasion and Liberty, as well as references to the Rise of Wesnoth, Legend of Wesmere, and the Hammer of Thursagan.
Our story is set during the Silver Age of Wesnoth, three decades after the events in the mainline campaign Eastern Invasion. Our characters are young elves from a small forest on the edge of the Estmark Hills, two cousins both eager to avoid settling into a boring career. Their first adventure together is to seek an artifact on behalf of a researcher in their village, a task which sets in motion events that will change their lives in ways they never imagined. The themes of Echoes of Invasion include belonging, healing, responsibility, judgment, and legacies.
Echoes of Invasion is played using the Genesys roleplaying system now published by Edge Studio. We also occasionally reference the Mythic Game Master Emulator’s event meaning tables for inspiration.
If you'd like to know more about the background for our game, including seeing the beautiful character portrait done by freelance artist Del Borovic, check out our campaign page:
Dicey Stories is a tabletop roleplaying game actual-play podcast with emphasis on storytelling. We release a new Wesnoth: Echoes of Invasion episode mid-week. The audio is accompanied by a serialized write-up of the adventure on our website. The podcasts generally clock in around 30-90 minutes. Find us on the platform of your choice at
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2023.05.31 18:33 jendefer [Actual Play] Dicey Stories Episodes 201: Wesnoth

This week we wrap-up our current arc, the season 1 finale of Wesnoth: Echoes of Invasion. Season 2 starts right back up next week, though.
Closing Time – Tric and Heppa wind down their time in South Tower, enjoying the close of the Full Bloom festival, spending some time with their new friends, and—once they’ve dragged their feet long enough—finding an artifact for Thrandolil.
Part 5 of 5 – Tric and Heppa fend off the skeletons uncovered by Ulf’s excavation.
We release a new Wesnoth: Echoes of Invasion episode mid-week. The audio is accompanied by a serialized write-up of the adventure on our website. The podcasts generally clock in around 30-90 minutes. Find us on the platform of your choice at
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2023.05.31 18:24 OscarNotTheGrouch recommendation for backpack that fits camping gear but could also use for travel

i’m going to a camping festival this summer, and thinking flying might be an option for me. i have a 2 person tent and sleeping bag, possibly a little mattress to go with it. I’m looking around online but I would also want a backpack that I could take travelling with me (say if i go to europe, or south america). looks like 65L could fit it, but it seems overkill when it comes to travelling with it/using it as a carry on.
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2023.05.31 18:03 London-Roma-1980 NON-CONFERENCE MATCHDAY 11 RESULTS

Basketball on Naismith Island is a game of 40 minutes. If you don't play all 40, you can lose a winnable game. See below.
#1 UCLA 80, #8 Michigan 77. Every defensive positioning matters; every play matters; every call matters. It's how you remain the #1 team in the land.
Bill Walton took a charging foul from Chris Webber with 12 seconds left, then sealed the game after being fouled on the inbound, as the Bruins (11-0) stole one from the Wolverines (9-2) to run their winning streak to 48 games in a row.
"I don't know what the complaint is. I had the position, I was far enough away from the basket, and I kept myself still. Chris [Webber] ran into me. It was the right call," Walton claimed.
While block/charge calls will always be controversial, it helped that the result of the collision took Webber's shot off-line. This wasn't a case of Michigan losing the lead on the call; reverse it, and Webber would have gone to the line down one. Still, the feelings of coming close and being so far resonated in the Michigan locker room.
"You can't do that -- you can't make that call," Webber griped after the game. "You gotta let us play, man."
Walton led all scorers with 18 points; Juwan Howard led Michigan with 17.
#3 Kentucky 82, #5 Kansas 81, OT. Wilt Chamberlain has never fouled out. Critics would say that stat plays too heavily in his mind at crucial points in the game -- that if you get a fourth foul on him, he becomes weaker on defense and passive when he should be going for blocks.
Is that what happened here? Obviously we'll never know, but the talk will become louder.
Anthony Davis' dunk over Chamberlain -- whose block attempt seemed to be a product of hesitation -- provided the difference with 1.2 seconds left as the Wildcats (10-1) took out the Jayhawks (9-2) after 45 minutes of end-to-end action.
"Coach [Adolph] Rupp told us that late in games, you could go to the rim," Davis said after the game as Kentucky fans swarmed him. "I didn't know how many fouls anyone had, I just knew that we were one down and the best chance I had was to get inside and dunk it down. I was able to do that, and we won the game as a result."
For his part, Chamberlain denied that his four fouls affected the final play. "I thought I had an angle to block it, but I wouldn't have gotten my hands there in time. I was out of position trying to guard [Dan] Issel on the final play. That's not how you zone."
Chamberlain had a monster game, putting up 19 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists, and 3 blocks. But it's another number that everyone will focus on -- 4, his foul total for the game.
John Wall led Kentucky with 15 points.
#4 Duke 73, #6 Michigan State 71. A common joke through the years has been that it just isn't a Duke season until they make someone hate them by ripping their proverbial hearts out.
Kyrie Irving's three-pointer as time expired silenced the partisan Michigan State crowd and lifted the Blue Devis (9-2) to a bounceback win over the Spartans (8-3) in a game both teams sorely wanted for different reasons.
"We needed that win, man," Duke forward Grant Hill, who led all scorers with 16 points, said after the game. "You come off a loss, you're facing an even tougher team, you gotta dig down deep. This was a gut check. We got what we needed."
Irving's last-second heroics -- or villainy, depending on whom you ask -- wiped out an incredible performance from Spartan guard Scott Skiles. With Jason Richardson in foul trouble and Magic Johnson as a shooting guard, Skiles turned back the clock and put up 11 assists to go with his 7 points. He found Johnson (14 points) with 7 seconds to go for the sky hook over Elton Brand that gave Michigan State a 71-70 lead and sent the crowd into a deafening roar.
That roar would go eerily quiet soon after.
#25 Illinois 87, #12 Connecticut 70. Eddie Johnson had been hearing noise from the Auburn faithful saying he was an impostor and that the "real" Eddie Johnson resided on the Plains. Your move, Auburn.
Johnson stunned and thrilled the crowd by putting up 27 points with the help of seven three-pointers as the Fighting Illini (9-2) stole one from the Huskies (8-3), who had no answer on defense for Johnson's hot hand.
"Incredible," Huskies coach Jim Calhoun said while shaking his head at the post-game press conference. "I don't think I've seen something like that in some time. We knew [Derek] Harper could cause trouble, and I figured we had Red [Kerr] contained, but sometimes it's the last guy you expect."
As Connecticut attempted to double-team the red-hot Johnson, he made the passes needed to keep Illinois on track. Meyers Leonard was a major recipient of those passes, ending with 15 points of his own.
Cliffy Robinson led the Huskies with 16 points.
#2 North Carolina 101, #22 Florida 56. Note to self: never, ever, ever, EVER face Michael Jordan coming off of a close loss. Ever.
Jordan, who when given the green light is almost unbeatable, scored 33 points and had 10 assists as the Tar Heels (9-2) gave a rude welcome to the Top 25 to the Gators (8-3), disheartening the Florida crowd and leaving coach Billy Donovan without answers.
"You know, when you look up at the scoreboard and it's the first half and there you are down 30, 35 points... you try to tell your team to take it one possession at a time, but you know they're thinking about how big that hill is to climb and how close they are to the point of no return," Donovan said. "We spent the second half trying to get our plays in order so that when SEC season began, we wouldn't run into this trouble."
Jordan, for his part, wanted to make a statement in this game. With 6 minutes left in the second half, Jordan even seemed to refuse to come out of the game, much to his substitute Vince Carter's chagrin. Eventually Dean Smith called a timeout to remind Jordan who the coach was.
"Michael's competitive, and we usually like that," Smith said after the game. "Usually."
#9 Notre Dame 78, #11 Ohio State 68. Is Digger Phelps on pace to be a Coach of the Year? He has to be the leader at this point.
With John Havlicek off to a hot start, Phelps went to a bigger lineup, moving Austin Carr to point guard and bringing LaPhonso Ellis in to stop Havlicek's slashing to the hoop. It paid off: only two of Havlicek's 22 points came in the second half as the Irish (9-2) stormed back to beat the Buckeyes (8-3).
"Coach asked me to step up, and I was able to today," Ellis said after the game. "You're facing a tough lineup like that, and you gotta hope for the best. I was able to come through for the team."
Ohio State led 40-33 at the half, but a monumental turnaround began when the Irish cut off Ohio State's top scorer. From there, Adrian Dantley took over, getting 17 of his 22 points in the second stanza -- a near mirror of Havlicek.
"Whatever I said at halftime I need to bottle, don't I?" Phelps joked after the game.
#15 Southern Cal 64, #7 Syracuse 55. Both teams went to a zone defense to unsettle the opposing outside shooters and cut down the passing lanes. It worked, but one team found just enough offense to put themselves over the top.
Bill Sharman's 15 points led all scorers as Syracuse missed 22 of 25 three-point attempts and the Trojans (9-2) knocked off the Orange (8-3) in a game meant for the basketball purists.
"We got them to use almost all of the shot clock on every possession," Sharman said after the game. "When you get a lead, you gotta play airtight defense. I've talked to the guys about being ready to give 110% on both sides of the ball, and it worked tonight."
The first half of this game proved to be a war of attrition. Syracuse missed all 11 of their three-point attempts, while Southern Cal committed four different violations of the 30-second shot clock. The teams went into the locker room tied at 24.
"We need to forget this game as soon as possible," admitted Orange guard Dave Bing, who had 12 points. Carmelo Anthony finished with 10, but on 1-12 shooting from outside the arc.
#18 LSU 66, #19 Georgetown 57. The anticipated matchup was between big men Shaquille O'Neal and Patrick Ewing Sr. That matchup was a battle of the bulls, but it was the shooting guard matchup we should've watched.
Pete Maravich had 21 points, outscoring Allen Iverson by 10, while O'Neal and Ewing had 16 points each. That was the difference, more or less, as the Tigers (8-3) knocked off the Hoyas (7-4) in a bruising clash between two power teams.
Coach Dale Brown was happy with his team's performance after the game. "It was a slow game, it was a half-court game, but we still found the outside shooting we needed to make it work," he told reporters. "It was necessary that we get this win -- I believe we can make noise in the SEC."
Hoyas forward Alonzo Mourning was frustrated all day by Bob Pettit cutting off passing lanes and keeping him from getting the ball. In the end, Mourning had only 7 points.
"I don't know how he did it," he said. "That guy's so underrated, man."
Meanwhile, in our featured game...
#17 DePaul 107, Rhode Island 77. In a surprise move before the game, coach Ray Meyer sat George Mikan and went small-ball, having Terry Cummings take the tip and Quentin Richardson join the starting five. It paid off big-time.
Richardson had 9 points, but he opened others to thrive in an up-tempo game as Mark Aguirre put up 25 points and the Blue Demons (8-3) established the pecking order over the upstart Rams (7-4), surviving their speedier style and winning in it.
Rhode Island coach Frank Keaney was disappointed, but not worried. "Our style is something we practice every day. When the time comes, we'll be ready to steal games with it. We need games like this to show our guys how much work they still have left to do if they want a postseason bid."
Sly Williams led the Rams with 16 points.
  1. UCLA 80, 8. Michigan 77
  2. North Carolina 101, 22. Florida 56
  3. Kentucky 82, 5. Kansas 81, OT
  4. Duke 73, 6. Michigan State 71
  5. Kansas 81, 3. Kentucky 82, OT
  6. Michigan State 71, 4. Duke 73
  7. Syracuse 55, 15. Southern Cal 64
  8. Michigan 77, 1. UCLA 80
  9. Notre Dame 78, 11. Ohio State 68
  10. Indiana 85, West Virginia 64
  11. Ohio State 68, 9. Notre Dame 78
  12. Connecticut 70, 25. Illinois 87
  13. Texas 92, Oregon State 56
  14. Arizona 92, Iowa State 58
  15. Southern Cal 64, 7. Syracuse 55
  16. Maryland 82, South Carolina 65
  17. DePaul 107, Rhode Island 77
  18. LSU 66, 19. Georgetown 57
  19. Georgetown 57, 18. LSU 66
  20. Minnesota 74, Detroit Mercy 66
  21. Alabama 73, Wichita State 63
  22. Florida 56, #2 North Carolina 101
  23. Iowa 71, Clemson 65
  24. UNLV 105, Old Dominion 67
  25. Illinois 87, 12. Connecticut 70
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2023.05.31 18:02 Sad-Energy7966 Might be a dumb question.. (newbie concert goer)

Okay so I’ve never been able financially to go to a real concert or festival before but I’m finally able too and want to go to the blue ridge festival in VA especially since Sleep Token will be there.
My question is— I’m looking at the daily line ups and I’m seeing like 30+ bands just on Friday alone. How long is each segment or how many songs roughly would I actually be able to hear from sleep token?
Sorry I have no idea how these things work!! 🥲
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2023.05.31 17:58 hanas_lin Petersburg: Trailblazer Amaza Lee Meredith celebrated in new audio documentary series Black pioneer broke through racial and gender barriers in architecture and artistic design: Meredith’s Azurest South completed in 1939 on VSU campus

PETERSBURG — One of the first Black woman architects, Amaza Lee Meredith from Petersburg, will be celebrated in the latest episodes of the New Angle: Voice audio documentary series created by Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation.
According to historian Jacqueline Taylor, Meredith [1895-1984] studied at Virginia Normal and Industrial Institute, now known as Virginia State University [VSU]. In 1947, she enrolled at Teachers College in New York City.
One of Meredith's best documented works is Azurest South, located on the VSU campus. Completed in 1939, it served as her home/studio and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1993. National Historic Landmark status is pending.
The Virginia Department of Historic Resources describes Azurest South as being located in the Chesterfield County town of Ettrick and Meredith's design as a compact, clean-lined dwelling. It is among the Commonwealth’s few mature examples of the International Style, a style which developed in Germany following World War I and espoused a complete break with traditional architecture.
The architect shared the house with her partner Edna Meade Colson [1888-1985], a leading Black educator and activist. In 1986, Azurest South became the official Alumni House for the Virginia State University Alumni Association, a dream of Meredith's.
Dinwiddie: 5K obstacle courseRugged Maniac: Social Butterfly shares muddy, wild, memorable experience, gallery, video
First-ever event in Old TownePetersburg community festival ArtSpring 2023: Juried art show, live music, food vendors
Sag Harbor, New York: Azurest North
Meredith’s life will soon be in the popular imagination: Actor Laurence Fishburne is producing a new HBO Max series based on Colson Whitehead’s novel "Sag Harbor," a place where Meredith and her sister Maude Terry developed a destination resort for middle-class Blacks. HBO Max is an American subscription video on-demand over-the-top streaming service.
Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation [BWAF] executive director Cynthia Phifer Kracauer leads this effort. She conceived and produced the audio documentaries with noted writer and editor Alexandra Lange Ph.D. and the acclaimed producer Brandi Howell.
The production team traveled to Petersburg, Charlottesville, Richmond and Manassas and interviewed preachers and historians like Grady Powell who document how Meredith founded a department at a university, taught art at Virginia State and more.
On Sag Harbor, Azurest North has been listed since 2019 as part of a historic district. The Sag Harbor work includes two residences by Meredith, including her family’s cottage where Meredith’s drafting table could be found.
Find Meredith’s audio documentary at and other podcast sites/platforms. The episode debuts today, Wednesday, May 31.
Restaurateur's first dine-in eateryPetersburg: New family-owned, seafood restaurant offers table, booth, bar, patio seating
Love story: Magnolia and MaxwellChester: Dogs fall head over paws in love, date six years, forced to part ways
— Kristi K. Higgins aka The Social Butterfly, an award-winning columnist, is the trending topics and food Q&A reporter at The Progress-Index voted the 2022 Tri-Cities Best of the Best Social Media Personality. Have a news tip on local trends or businesses? Contact Kristi (she, her) at [email protected], follow @KHiggins_PI on Twitter @socialbutterflykristi on Instagram.
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2023.05.31 17:58 StardropScavenger [USA] [H] Various Games for N64, GameCube, Wii, Switch, Gameboy, Gameboy Color, Gameboy Advance, DS, 3DS, PS1, PS2 Switch Consoles, GBA SP Consoles Switch Cases, Game Guides [W] Cashapp, Venmo or Zelle

Good morning , everyone! I have quite a bit of things for sale today, ALL prices include shipping via the payment methods mentioned above. Happy to provide photos upon request, and all orders will be going out within 24-48 business hours!
Zelda Tears of the Kingdom OLED Switch BNIB + Tears of the Kingdom Carrying Case BNIB $390
Nintendo Switch HAC-001 Red/Blue Joycon Console w/ Box, includes animal crossing (powerA controller, and Mario Kart Case) $225
Pink Gameboy Advance SP Pearl 101's (both consoles have scratches on them. Screens are both fine.) $90 each
IPS Famicom Custom Gameboy Advance SP (overall condition is good.) $150
Paper Mario BOX/MANUAL/INSERTS ONLY! (Notes: The box has several creases, it has been kept in a box protector to prevent further creasing, the inserts do have a "wrinkle" to them. Manual looks good $200
Goldeneye 007 $25
Mario Party w/ manual (manual does have wear) $50
Diddy Kong Racing w/ manual $30
Animal Crossing [Disc only; resurfaced] $35
GameCube Start-Up Disc (the disc only; no case or player.) $130
Go! Go Hypergrind (Includes case, manual and disc. The artwork has like a "wrinkle" to it, shows wear. The manual has a bend on the bottom right corner, and the disc has some white residue on the ring.) $375
Fire Emblem Path of Radiance CIB #1 (Very good condition, disc has little to no wear. Manual/inserts look good also.) $265
Fire Emblem Path of Radiance CIB #2 (Very good condition, disc has little wear. Manual/inserts are nice.) $260
Fire Emblem Path of Radiance #3 (Missing insert, includes the case, manual and disc. Very good condition as well.) $250
Rune Factory Tides of Destiny CIB $25
Rune Factory Frontier CIB $35
Love Esquire [New] $40
Octopath Traveler $50
Trails of Cold Steel III Extracurricular Edition $60
Liar Princess and Blind Prince [New] $55
Fire Emblem Engage Divine Edition + [New] Tarot Cards (no STEELBOOK OR GAME INCLUDED!) $70
Dragon Warrior Monsters 2 Cobi's Journey $40
Dr. Mario Classic NES Series $15
Final Fantasy Tactics $25
Final Fantasy Legend [Includes Worn Box, Manual and Map] $80
Fire Emblem $70
Fire Emblem Sacred Stones $65
Gameboy Camera [Color: Blue] $40
Golden Sun: The Lost Age $40
Harry Potter Prisoner of Azkaban and Goblet of Fire $15
Lord of the Rings The Third Age $15
Lufia The Legend Returns (Part of label missing) $35
Mario vs Donkey Kong [Game and Box only] $30
Mario vs Donkey Kong $15
Mario Kart Super Circuit [Player's Choice] CIB $50
Mega Man Battle Network $60
Mega Man Battle Network 3 White $20
Mega Man Battle Network 4 Blue Moon $25
Mega Man Battle Network 5 Team Protoman $25
Shining Force: Resurrection of the Dark Dragon $60
Shining Soul $60
Super Mario Advance [Bundle] - Includes 2, 3 and 4 $50
Random Games Bundle - Includes: Dora, Frogger (not working), Final Fantasy IV (loads, then doesn't work), Star Wars Jedi Battles (loads, then doesn't work), Sonic Advance, Incredibles, Finding Nemo, DBZ: Legacy of Goku, Cartoon Network Speedway, Star Wars Flight of the Falcon, Side Pocket, I Spy Challenge, Top Gear Rally (2 copies), Dungeons & Dragons Eye of the Beholder, Mario vs. Donkey Kong, Tetris Worlds, Namco Museum 50th Anniversary, Simpson's Road Rage - $85
Nintendo DS/3DS
999 [loose] $40
Cooking Mama 5 [loose] $35
Etrian Mystery Dungeon [Soundtrack Bundle, Sealed] $200
Fantasy Life [loose] $40
Final Fantasy Fables Chocobo's Tales [CIB] $25
Fire Emblem Awakening [World Edition] $35
Fire Emblem Fates [Special Edition] #1 [CIB, with wear to the box] $500
Fire Emblem Fates [Special Edition] #2 [Missing artbook] $470
Heroes of Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes [CIB] $30
Kingdom Hearts RE:Coded [loose] $15
Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance [loose] $15
Legacy of YS Books I & II [Has outer box, case, manual and game. No soundtrack] $125
Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time 3D [loose] $20 each
Legend of Zelda Majora's Mask Skull Kid Figure [No Game] $80
Mario Kart 7 [CIB] $15
Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney & Ace Attorney Justice For All [both loose] $35
Pokemon Sun and Moon Steelbook [No games] $60
Pokemon Sun [Loose] $15 each [1 sold]
Pokemon Alpha Sapphire [loose] $30
Pokemon X [Loose] $30
Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Gates to Infinity [Loose] $25
Pokemon Soul Silver #1 [loose, placed into new shell; old one broken but included.] $75
Pokemon Soul Silver #2 [loose, has some stuff on the back of it.] $100
Pokemon Soul Silver #3 [CIB] $160
Pokemon Black 2 [Loose] $120
Pokemon Rumble Blast [in rough condition] $15
Project X Zone 2 [CIB] $90
Resident Evil 3D The Mercenaries [CIB] $25
Senran Kagura Double D Edition [Soundtrack Sealed] $70
Super Princess Peach [CIB, wear to cartridge] $105
Suikoden II [Loose, has wear to disc and some scratching] $100
Harvest Moon Back to Nature [CIB] $50
MS Saga: A New Dawn [CIB] $125
Dragon Quest V Guide $100
Dragon Quest I-VIII Symphonic Suite Collection $70
Harvest Moon Animal Parade Guide (tear on front cover, very minor.) $110
SWITCH CASES ONLY NO GAMES AT ALL FOR $120 [List: Carrion, Mario & Sonic At The Olympic Games 2020 Tokyo, Pokemon Shield, Pikmin 3 Deluxe, Lego DC Super Villians[Steelbook], Pokemon Brilliant Diamond, Zelda Skyward Sword, NEO The World Ends With You, Super Mario Party, Wolfenstein II, Mitopia, The Mummy Demastered, Super Smash Bros Ultimate, Ninja Saviors, No More Heroes 1 2 3, Travis Strikes Back]
Zelda Phantom Hourglass Cel Art Print $20
Zelda Feather DS Stylus $30
Zelda Ocarina of Time 3D Soundtrack $30
Avalon Code [Case,Manual, NO GAME] $40
submitted by StardropScavenger to GameSale [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 17:35 Classy_Seamstress Do you think these babies are too young to be separated from their mother? Someone left them on my porch last night and I'm trying to figure out what to feed them.

Do you think these babies are too young to be separated from their mother? Someone left them on my porch last night and I'm trying to figure out what to feed them. submitted by Classy_Seamstress to kittens [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 17:22 TheMonkeyButcher [Christopher Ward] C65 came in today

[Christopher Ward] C65 came in today
Hi all, my Christopher Ward C65 Dune 38 mm came in today and I wanted to spread the joy by sharing a short video.
I ordered the watch at the end of March as I wanted to treat myself for my 30th birthday with my first automatic watch. I came across Christopher Ward via this subreddit and was intrigued. The C65 looked amazing in the marketing shots, so I took the jump and hoped for the best. As CW does not have physical stores, I hoped for the best.
However, I did not like the pictures that I saw on fora and became hesitant on my purchase. I think it was mostly due to the crème / beige colour of the dial. Thanks to the 60 day return policy, I decided to wait this out. Ultimately, it was worth the wait and the watch looks spectacular. Honestly, it looks far better in person than in pictures.
In person, the Watch feels well build and luxurious. I noticed that CW had issues with mild scratches on the dials in the past, so this was the first thing I wanted to inspect. I couldn’t find one single scratch in the interior or exterior of the Watch. I guess that CW has upped their quality control.
The seconds dial looks awesome with its harpoon at the end. I also really like the new logo. The logo looks sleek, modern and luxurious. It is far better than the old logos (looking at you “full written name” logo).
This watch is also my first watch with lume. I was surprised how quickly you could see it. The Watch colored beautiful blue when walking up the stairs during the day. Curious what it will look like this evening.
Lastly, the strap. I picked the canvas webbing strap as I thought it would look the best with the crème / beige dial. The strap is well made and comes not flexible out of the box. The trick is to bend it by hand so that it will gain some flexibility when wearing.
submitted by TheMonkeyButcher to Watches [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 17:06 JohnDanger95 Just a few from the last couple of trips out.

Just a few from the last couple of trips out. submitted by JohnDanger95 to bassfishing [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 17:06 Classy_Seamstress (OC) Someone left 4 kittens on my porch last night...

(OC) Someone left 4 kittens on my porch last night... submitted by Classy_Seamstress to aww [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 16:56 AnomXadE Toxic Masculinity in the Trades.

If you clicked on this because you were angry about a whiney liberal or in agreement with the title, please take a few breaths. We are all the same and there is no good that will come of fighting and not hearing each other out. It is okay to disagree. So please I would like a real discussion.
I am a traditional conservative type of guy. A grew up in blue collar hard labor trades in South East Texas.
I love the feeling of putting in the work and being able to step back and see the work you have accomplished.
I have been a welder, a carpenter, a painter, a roofer, and a tree topper, and have served in the Navy. I have felt great pride and kinship with the people I have worked with. Men and women, but mostly men.
I worked with a welder, he was 56 years old and had been working in the field for 2 decades and he made 2 dollars more than myself at the time. He had to take medication that he could barely afford and his benefits weren't great. He loved welding and he was very skilled a great mentor.
But he believed the only way to prove yourself is to hurt your body and push through it, "don't bitch" "try acting like a man". These were some of his manly insights.
He was a tough gut but still he was getting to the point were his health was declining and he sometimes could make it a whole shift.
This kind of behavior is something I've seen time and time again in my time working in the trades. Scares, missing fingers, deafness, respiratory issues, all of these and more. From what I've seen there is a macho disposition of men, especially older seasoned men, in the trades. And I believe this is toxic to men, and their quality of life.
This is my own experience. This may not be true everywhere. My hope is that a new wave of integrity and pride in work, but also care for one another for health and quality of life.
Please let me know what you think.
submitted by AnomXadE to skilledtrades [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 16:55 Intelligent-Tip-4556 Price of Abortion Pills Elukwatini

Price of Abortion Pills Elukwatini
Price of Abortion Pills Elukwatini
Price of Abortion Pills Elukwatini
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The Price of Surgical Abortions in Elukwatini is performed on the same day in the leading clinic the price is affordable even if students can afford it you will not have to stay in the clinic we use morden machines. This procedure is known as a manual vacuum aspiration and is recommended for women who are 8 weeks pregnant a small device opens the cervix and then gently stretches it using dilators and the contents of the uterus are removed through a suction tube it always takes 30 minutes and you start drinking the womb cleaning pills. Call us today at 0769909369
submitted by Intelligent-Tip-4556 to u/Intelligent-Tip-4556 [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 16:53 atxrobotlover B-Movies for B-Lovers

Background: My mom and I watch movies over Plex to help us stay in touch, we are 70s, 80s and 90s lovers. We mainly like practical effects, monsters, and seriously bad sets. To find these gems I usually have to scour ebay for VHS, rip them to digital, and put them up on Plex.
If you like B-Movies with huge plot holes, bad acting, sets and props that make you laugh at how awful they are, or just like extremely cheesy movies ... here are 5 that stood out over the last month.
Digital Man (1995)This movie is an odd duck. On all accounts this movie should suck: Bad acting? Check. Bad special effects? You know it has 'em. Story that was put together as shooting was taking place? Of course. It's got ridiculous sci-fi guns and armor that the actors were clearly embarrassed to wear and use while filming. It's got actors you will recognize who must have just started out, like a fresh-faced Adam Baldwin and Clint Howard (he even has some hair), and even Amanda Wyss from "Better Off Dead". This movie should be a slam dunk into the B-Movie toilet but somehow it all works, and even though I felt like I should be mocking this film as I watched it, I was pretty into it.
Primal Rage (1988)If you like movies where a team of Chads who like to be jerks with a side hustle of attacking women, who then contract some mad scientist cooties and turn into MegaChads and ruin a Halloween Party full of college kids ... this movie is what you are looking for. Honestly 3/4 of the budget must have been spent on the Halloween costumes for the party. It's actually the the best part of the movie. This film also embraces all that is 80s, including a pop-infused theme song that's played repeatedly for random reasons, big hair and mullets, girls wearing aerobics outfits, and lots of Rabid-Chads killing people.
Curse of the Blue Lights (1988)What do you get when you get a bunch of horney teens, throw them in a creepy graveyard, and let them make out until they inadvertently summon murderous ghouls? This movie. And maybe 100 movies just like it? For real, this is a movie you put on and go make a meatloaf or something because you can literally miss up to an hour of the film, come back, and figure out exactly what's going on.
Roller Blade (1986)I petitioned IMDB to rename this movie "SkateBoobs". I am not going to insult your intelligence and explain why. I watched this movie TWICE, doing irreparable harm to my brain, and I still have no idea exactly what it was about. Skate-Nuns who call themselves the "Bod Sisters", because they like to skate-fight in skimpy outfits and then relax in a hot tub of skate-goo, fight some other guys who are also on roller skates, look like they wandered in from the "Mad Max" set. Why? Boobs, of course. At some point in the filming the director decided that boobs were just not enough, so threw in some female full frontal nudity to really cement the movies together into a nudity-fueled roller-skate extravaganza. Do I recommend this movie? I mean, hell yeah I do. The only other movie that comes CLOSE to the boob-to-skate ratio I demand in my post apocalyptic roller-boob movies is Roller Blade Warriors: Taken By Force.
Dog Tags (1987)I've sat here for a good ten minutes, trying to find a way to describe this movie. I can't. Everything about this film was stupid: The soldiers were super dumb, wandering around a jungle dripping with bad guys, but they screamed at each other and argued at the top of their lungs about stupid things. The angst and emotion were also cranked to 12th gear, each guy had to take time out (usually during firefights) to talk about feelings and how hard their life was. The really, REALLY odd part which I also confirmed with my mom when we finally finished the movie: I kept expecting the soldiers to break into Broadway numbers, like "Hamilton" style but much, much worse. I have no idea why this was a thing but it's real, the actors looks like they just got done on a run of "West Side Story" and decided to make a long, boring war movie.
Hope this helps someone find some good B-Movies, we managed to watcha group of stinkers this month and no real gems that stand out. If you are a B-Movie lover you might find something good here, though!
submitted by atxrobotlover to horror [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 16:50 JamesKPolk-on Is Testicle Festival family friendly?

I’ve been planning on going to Round the Bend’s testicle festival in Ashland. I was wondering if it was a family friendly environment. Can I bring the kids or should I leave them home?
submitted by JamesKPolk-on to Nebraska [link] [comments]

2023.05.31 16:41 MrC_Red [Update] 100 Great Rock Albums list CHANGES

It's been over a year since the original 100 Great Albums post. Since December 2021, I've listened to 375 Rock albums in total (just for fun, I'm getting paid for this!). Looking back at the original albums, I noticed I have a few with only 1 or 2 listens, whereas now I always try to aim for 3 at the minimum. So as this is a good midpoint (as I plan on stopping at the 20th post), I decided to revisit these certified classic albums and maybe upgrade/downgrade the ratings after more listens. I'll continue to edit grades on other posts if my opinion changes on them later on, but the 100 list got so popular that I feel like it should be left unedited.
Here's the format: Album (year) original grade [orig. Listens] // NEW GRADE {additional listens}
  1. Bob Dylan - Freewheelin' Bob Dylan (1963) B+ [2 listens] // A- {1 listen} More time to digest his lyrics only makes it better. Hard Rain, Blowin in the Wind and Masters of War are still the best here. He had the wisdom and poise of a 70+ year old man, as a 22 year old...
  2. Bob Dylan - Bring It On Home (1965) A- [3 listens] // A+ {2 listens} I can't overemphasize how great side two is of this album is. The songs aren't as musical as side one, so the lyrics are center stage and Bob Dylan ALWAYS captivates your attention. The electric guitar side is even better than I originally thought, but man does the second side has some of his best songwriting.
  3. The Beatles - Help! (1965) B+ [3 listens] // A- {1 listen} This is the album where I think they started making legit "respectable" music. The early Pop music they made before is nice, but it's not that fulfilling. The variety made this age very well: Hide Your Love Away, Ticket to Ride, Seen a Face, Dizzy Miss Lizzy, Help!, Yesterday. It doesn't help that every album that followed it is considered one of the greatest albums of all time, but at this point, it was head and shoulders their best.
  4. Beatles - Rubber Soul (1965) A++ [5 listens] // A+ {4 listens} Highway 61 Revisited gets the credit as being the album to kick off the Rock renaissance of the 60s, but imo, the "album arms race" started with this one. Without it, the musical landscape isn't the same as the concept of an entire album of worthy material wouldn't have been as widely adopted. With the praise out of the way... it's pretty one note. A great Folk Rock album, but as it's often compared to other albums (cough Pet Sounds), it doesn't hold a candle to them.
  5. The Beatles - Magical Mystery Tour (1967) B+ [3 listens] // A {3 listens} This is fun, bro. No it's not a legendary album, hell, it's not really a fully formed one as it's really a soundtrack compilation album. But looking at all the songs, they're just fun. Even a half assed Beatles album is still incredible (no I haven't listened to Yellow Submarine, why do you ask?).
  6. The Doors - Self-Titled (1967) A- [2 listens] // A++ {3 listens} Wow, this is why multiple listens are super important. Many of the songs I thought were "so so" are so much better compared to other Blues Rock I've heard so far. Ray Manzarek is a god on the keys and Jim Morrison is pretty magnificent on every song. It still feels dated, as it's not super complex in it's song structure (like in LA Woman), but every song is great. JUST short of a masterpiece.
  7. The Who - Tommy (1969) B [1 listen] // D++ {1 listen} I was being generous on the original post, I really didn't like this album. After one more listen, I really hate it. The story is complete nonsense and the music really doesn't make up for it. But that's not why I hate it so much; it's the length. If you're gonna be a late 60's mess, be your flamboyant mess and get in & get out. But it's an overly long, drawn out, bore of an album. It's mind boggling that anyone would prefer this over Quadrophena. Pinball Wizard is a great song tho, but don't tell anyone I said that.
  8. King Crimson - In The Court of the Crimson King (1969) A- [1 listen] // A {1 listen} listening to Moody Blues' Days of Future Passed made this album a better listen. That jazz prog rock, with a laid back feel instead of completely psychedelic. The rest of the album (outside the intro) was a better listen this time around with better context, as I remember being bored with much of it. Now that I'm familiar with early Prog Rock, this doesn't feel as foreign anymore.
  9. The Beatles - Let It Be (1970) B+ [3 listens] // A {3 listens} yea, I'm a Beatles stan. Yea, it's probably the weakest Studio Era album. Yea, I enjoy the atmosphere of this album more than the music itself; as a last who-rah of a crumbling friendship that can only be held together by creating music, as that is where the only fun is still found amongst these guys. Do I like to pretend that Don't Let Me Down is apart of this album, so I can grade it higher? Also, yea.
  10. David Bowie - Hunky Dory (1971) A+ [2 listens] // A {2 listens} this is Art Rock. Not being a glam/hard rock fusion makes it less heavy than its successor. It also suffers for not having multiple strong anthems to hold the entire thing. Changes, Life on Mars, Andy Warhol, Queen Bitch are all great songs, but I doubt any are in Bowie's top 5. The other songs don't hold up as much I remembered.
  11. Carole King - Tapestry (1971) A- [2 listens] // A {2 listens} Joni Mitchell's Blue was the driving force this time around. That personal folk storytelling, with that lively piano yet cozy, warm atmosphere. With more listens, I don't really love the lyrical composition as I just love the tone of the thing. I can sit next to a warm fire (or on a window sill) and turn this on and relax. I understand what the genre of Soft Rock is going for now.
  12. David Bowie - the Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (1972) A+ [2 listens] // Masterpiece {3 listens} Probably didn't give this one too much thought when grading it, as I think I just fell in love with a few songs on it and forgot about the rest. Listening to this front to back... it's flawless. I tried to find a song that wasn't good or that was kinda boring, but they're all perfect. I've listened to Ziggy Stardust and Starman COUNTLESS times in the past year, and will randomly get guitar riffs from random songs off this album to pop in my head. Of his 4 albums I've listened to, I still think Low is his best, as the atmosphere of that Side B is unmatched. But this album is what I'd consider objectively perfect, as every song is great. Easy masterpiece, and a great example of why sitting with an album is just as important as giving it a bunch of listens.
  13. Queen - A Night at the Opera (1975) A- [2 listen] // A {2 listens} Fun stuff. I enjoyed the multiple vocalists being apart of it instead of only Mercury, made it feel like a "stage play" with a revolving cast. I think I might have been a bit to harsh on this one, as most of the album wasn't that memorable, with how amazing Bohemian Rhapsody is. I didn't understand what this album "was" with it's vaudeville style, but now, I see that it's this halfway point between the Hard Rock and the Prog Rock of the 70s, with that theatrical flair to make it standout. Definitely worth checking out.
  14. Sex Pistols - Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols (1977) B [2 listens] // A- {2 listens} In 1987, Rolling Stone listed this as the 2nd best album of the last 20 years (since 1967) only after Sgt. Pepper's and man, did that made it easy for me to view this as overrated. I think since listening to more Punk Rock that followed this, I start to see how much better they've done with this compared to others. The guitar playing actually changes throughout the song, Johnny Rotten is actually expressive and feels spontaneous, and the drumming is creative. But the real change in opinion is the guitar playing: the riffs on many of these songs are undeniably awesome, which gives Rotten so much to work on top of. My biggest gripe with Punk Rock is how repetitive some bands can be. Now after more listens to this, I can absolutely NOT say the same can be said about this album. It's varied and expressive; how Punk Rock should be.
  15. Steely Dan - Aja (1977) A [1 listens] // A+ {1 listen} better than I remember. The jazz rock combo is really good, it really leans into the jazz instead of simply using it as an aesthetic. It's not Prog whatsoever, just jazz with traditional Rock instruments. Honestly, you can barely tell if this would considered Rock at all. You really got to like jazz to love this tho. It has that free flowing feel of that genre, from the instrumentation to the flow of the singer. Great album! I'm assuming Steely Dan is hated by the rock community because of this heavy leaning into jazz. Which is understandable, but that doesn't mean they don't make phenomenal music.
  16. AC/DC - Highway to Hell (1979) B+ [2 listens] // B {1 listen} They haven't quite moved away from the Blues sound yet. Back in Black is a pure distillation of what Hard Rock should be as a stand alone genre, but they don't quite have that confidence in being that brash yet. Bon Scott does a lot of heavy lifting as Angus Young doesn't have that swagger in his solos yet. A lot of the songs aren't super great, but they at least still carry energy. Highway to Hell is a fantastic song, but the majority is just meddling around in this laid back blues style.
  17. Dire Straits - Brothers in Arms (1985) B [1 listens] // B- {2 listens} I originally wrote this off as one that I "just didn't get", with how insanely commerically successful it is. Now after listening to their Self-Titled album, it actually becomes even more disappointing as you know how much more they're capable of. There's such a signature style on it and this throws all of it away in exchange of a 80s soft rock sound. Walk of Life and So Far Away are good tunes, due to the guitar hooks; everything else is just shallow.
  18. Pixies - Doolittle (1989) A- [2 listens] // A+ {2 listens} Now, I view this band on the level of the Beatles or Velvet Underground as one of those influential bands that changed music. At the time, Doolittle was too weird for me, but with much more context from this era, this is just insanely great. Compared to Surfer Rosa, the versatility is on a different level. While it is great and varied, it's not exactly "great" in any one area, so I can see why the bands that were influenced by them are viewed as better, as their stuff would've been more focused in one style instead of all over the place. Great album, legendary band.
  19. Alice in Chains - Dirt (1992) A [2 listens] // Masterpiece {4 listens} This album is a grower. Every time I listen to it, I like another song from it. The harmonies are God tier, the guitar riffs, God Tier, the choruses, God tier. Layne Staley and Jerry Cantrell... peanut and jelly. I've given out 2 masterpieces to grunge albums (Nevermind and Ten), so what makes this different from those is that Dirt takes its time in developing songs. So many of these songs start slow and somber, and quickly turn aggressive and passionate! Gnarly riffs on one song, than a few minutes later, you're listening to soft vocals behind a rough, tortured voice. Not a bad song on here, hit after hit, I got to say it's a masterpiece.
  20. Nine Inch Nails - The Downward Spiral (1994) A [3 listens] // A+ {2 listen} the word "gritty" might get thrown around a ton by me, but I still haven't heard such a brutal, harsh sounding album while still having pristine production value. It's nasty and mean. Even in the slow moments, you can feel the pain, anger, or sadness in his voice. Compared to other stuff, it doesn't have that much replay value to it, as it's not exact what one would call "musical". But you got to call it what it is: art.
  21. Green Day - Dookie (1994) A [2 listens] // A+ {1 listen} It's just good music. Yes, the ceiling isn't as high as it could be, but it's so enjoyable that it is always a fun listen. The album is on point from start to finish, it's one of those "if you like one, you like it all" love it or hate it kind of deals. From Burn Out to When I Come Around is just Pop Punk perfection; the backhalf doesn't hold up compared to the start, but it's all still very good.
  22. Weezer - Self-Titled "The Blue Album" (1994) A- [1 listen] // A {2 listens} I only gave this one listen and only revisited it after listening to Pinkerton. Isn't not as dismissable as I originally remembered, as I only gave it one listen. It's more POP- punk thank pop-PUNK compared to Dookie, which led me to not care for it as much. And it's pretty good pop, with a punk style to give it some edge, I guess. I still like Pinkerton more than it, but it can definitely stand alone as a good album itself.
  23. Oasis - Definitely Maybe (1994) A [2 listens] // A+ {2 listens} Liam Gallagher is really good... but Noel Gallagher is the truth, bro. That dude knows how to make a great song. They aren't super complex, but they're all have perfect execution. Mix in that Wall of Sound effect with the guitars, it makes this stand out even more from the overwhelming stacked albums of the 90s. The non-single tracks aren't as strong compared to (What's the Story) Morning Glory?, as that album is damn near perfect imo. Great debut album.
  24. Radiohead - The Bends (1995) B+ [1 listen] // A {2 listens} If Radiohead didn't make this album, I highly doubt I would've listened to this. Which is a shame, because this is a really good album. On the flip side, being a Radiohead album also did more harm than good, as it gets massively overshadowed. I admittedly did a half assed listen to "get to the famous stuff". Fake Plastic Trees, the Bends, and Black Star are great songs. I've listened to Ok Computer so much that I come to think of it as their official "start" of their sound, when in reality, they set the stage on The Bends of what can be possible down the road. Also, they toured with Alanis Morissette with the album, so extra bonus points!
  25. Arcade Fire - Funeral (2004) A- [2 listens] // A+ {2 listens} better than I remembered. I definitely thought it was borderline pretentious, with how the song structure is when I originally listened to it. Now, without that stigma, it's not THAT abstract and I've come to admire the creativeness of it. I always love when there's women vocalists, to mix up the sound and so many different instruments add even more to the variety. It always feels like a new listen, with how many things I'll forget to notice and remember again.
  26. Lcd Soundsystem - Sound of Silver (2007) A- [1 listen] // A {2 listens} The first 4 songs are awesome; Get Innocuous with it's multirhythmic layering is my textbook PERFECT song, a 21st century "Remain in Light" homage. The rest just loses this energy and it's never found again. Compare the first track with the last one and it sounds like two different projects. I know you can call me a hypocrite with how much I love Remain in Light, but at least with that one, it's only the last song and not half of the album. Seriously tho, Get Innocuous is a top 10 song of all time
  27. Tame Impala - Currents (2016) A- [1 listen] // B+ {1 listen} Didn't expect my feelings to decrease, but compared to Lonerism, this is so mid. The lack of a real "great" song (Rihanna's Same Old Mistakes clears) makes it tough to love. It is consistent though, so it's still a good listen; just not a memberable one.
Albums I revisited, but no change in opinion. I feel like with these, I need to explain/defend myself more than I did on the original reviews:
  1. Beach Boys - Pet Sounds (1965) A+ [4 listens] // {3 listens} After listening to a good chunk of their discography, I've come to two conclusions on Pet Sounds: 1) This album is truly lightning in the bottle as they NEVER reach it's level of consistency in quality from track to track. 2) Baroque Pop, while groundbreaking, came and went as fast as it arrived, mainly due to how abstract it is compared to its successor, Psychedelic Rock. Beyond that, there are a few skips that are solely due to wild creative mind of Brian Wilson. As a musical genius, dare I say better than Lennon and McCartney, but as a songwriter? Not even close imo. Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper's are all great albums, while Pet Sounds can be argued to be their only great album (Wild Honey is also a good listen). I know bringing up the Beatles can be annoying, but the Beatles made great "hit singles" with their song layout, while about only half of the tracks on Pet Sounds are what I'd consider a traditional song. That's probably why I don't think it's so amazing (I kinda feel the same about progressive Rock) as I tend to favor music with a concise structure; even as unoriginal the structure may be.
  2. Jimi Hendrix Experience - Are You Experienced? (1967) B+ [1 listen] // {1 listen} I can't get into it. The songwriting isn't there, especially compared to the stuff that would follow it. This is him at his rawest, but it's a reason why Medium Rare is the most commonly cooked steak.
  3. The Rolling Stones - Let It Bleed (1969) B+ [2 Listens] // {3 listens} Thought I would flip on this album, but surprisingly didn't change at all. I still think Gimme Shelter is the best Rolling Stones song and I still think You Can't Always Get What You Want is still a phenomenal album closer, but everything in between is pretty lackluster (besides Live With Me).
  4. Pink Floyd - Dark Side of the Moon (1973) A [4 listens] // {1 listen} I do enjoy this album more now I know how other Progressive Rock bands sound like, but not enough to raise it a grade. I enjoy Time and the whole second side much more and the "emptiness" of the genre doesn't bother me as much. But the first half is still a little too abstract for my liking. However, I do see how people can view this as their GOAT album with how groundbreaking it's release was at the time and outside of only other Pink Floyd albums, there's nothing else in this genre that really matches the "entering another world" feel it creates.
  5. Pink Floyd - Wish You Were Here (1975) A [2 listens] // {1 listen} Similar thoughts to DSotM, but this one has the more catchy "songs" and partly why I love it more. Welcome to the Machine and Wish You Were Here are fantastic, but overall not enough meat for my liking.
  6. The Ramones - Self-Titled (1976) B [2 listens] // {2 listens} I decided to give the Godfathers of Punk another try since I surprisingly came over to like the other Godfather, the Sex Pistols. And yeah... still isn't my thing. Way too one note, monotone singing, guitar takes over too much of the sound, etc. There are a few good hooks here and there, but you basically hear the entire song in the first 15 seconds. Everything I hate about Punk, stemmed from this album and made a lazier copy.
  7. The Smashing Pumpkins - Siamese Dreams (1993) A+ [2 listens] // {1 listen} apparently the Smashing Pumpkins aren't considered grunge? If that's the case, comparing them to a Noise Rock band like a Sonic Youth or a Faith No More, they don't they don't rock out as much as I'd like. Also, I don't like how a few of these songs sound similar to each other. Today and Hummer of course are all top tier songs, but it's just not as much of a comprehensive project as Mellon Collie. Yea, it's definitely not grunge, as it would be much harder if it was.
  8. Radiohead - Ok Computer (1997) A++ [2 listens] // {4 listens} Close, but no cigar. The first 3 songs and the last 3 songs are PERFECT, it's the stuff in between that makes it fall just short. The run of Karma Police into Fitter Happier to Electioneering is also a great moment in the album. Honestly, it's just Exit Music being "okay" that really stops it from being considered a masterpiece in my eyes. Still one of the greatest albums of all time, but not perfect in my eyes. This album is my perfect barometer for an A++ grade; it's objectively a perfect, but on the subjective level, there's nothing that makes me "adore" it. I completely understand how anyone thinking an A++ album I graded is a masterpiece, as I have to personally love it that extra step for it to get to that level.
  9. Radiohead - In Rainbows (2007) A++ [3 listens] // {3 listens A+/A+/A++} Let me end it on a positive review: I didn't really give a thorough listen to it at first, as I don't remember much from it. Over time, my opinion on it dropped as I truly didn't see why people find it so special as they do. Ok Computer easily has the better individual tracks, Kid A is easily the most experimental. After finally revisiting it, maybe because it's a great midway between the two, with a weird electronic-rock-jazz fusion. Feels like there's not a single wasted second; every beat and note is meticulous. It's more chilled and laid back, which threw me off on the repeat listens. The hodgepodge of electronic and experimental sounds, being used in this traditional lofi style instead of being a fast paced one, was the curve that made it hard to love it at first, but now I think that's what makes it unique in its execution. A LOT of these rhythms could have been large and bombastic, and I kinda admire it's restraint in remaining "down in Earth". Also the album cover is noteworthy, where it feels completely spontaneous, never fully knowing what to expect going in. Definitely deserves its high praise
Albums I also revisited, but no change in opinion. Don't have too much to add on these, but listed them as my grades are concrete on these compared to the ones I didn't choose to listen to:
  1. The Velvet Underground & Niko - Self-Titled "The Banana Album" (1967) A+ // Venus in Furs maybe one of the greatest songs ever composed
  2. Cream - Disraeli Gears (1967) A+ // It still holds up, so damn awesome
  3. Bob Dylan - John Wesley Harding (1967) B+ // yeah, he's kinda rambling on this one
  4. The Stooges - Fun House (1970) A- // it's "the Stooges", possibly their best
  5. The Rolling Stones - Exile on Main Street (1972) B+ // Nope, still didn't love it, still a mess
  6. Elton John - Goodbye Yellow Brick Road (1972) A++ // One I thought wouldn't have held up. I shall never question Sir Elton's greatness again
  7. The Eagles - Hotel California (1975) B // Great start, gets worst as it goes on
  8. Patti Smith - Horses (1975) A- // labeling this "Punk Rock" is a nicer way of calling this weird af
  9. The Clash - London Calling (1979) Masterpiece // Not only is there not a bad song here, but every song is perfect. Not great... PERFECT
  10. U2 - Joshua Tree (1987) B+ // I can't deny that there are some good songs on here, even if I'll never listen to it again
  11. The Cure - Disintegration (1989) A // after 375 Rock albums, Plainsong is still the greatest opening track
  12. U2 - Achtung Baby (1991) A- // you gotta admit Bono is pretty cool on this one
  13. Nirvana - In Utero (1993) A // love the Bass guitar's tone on this one, rawer contrast to Nevermind. I'm glad I didn't grow up in the 90s, as this will always sound so new and fresh to me :)
  14. System of a Down - Toxicity (2001) Masterpiece // Similar to Hybrid Theory, if this wasn't labeled as "Nu-metal" (and maybe didn't get so overplayed and copied), even the most pretentious critic couldn't deny how great this is
  15. Green Day - American Idiot (2004) A+ // Feels almost like a different band, the songs are much more nuisanced in its lyrics and its musical structure. That transition from Holiday to Boulevard still gives me goosebumps, such a great song.
  16. Arctic Monkeys - Whatever You Say I Am, That's What I'm Not (2006) A++ // a tour guide to the UK nightclubbing/pub scene, way better than it has any right to be honestly
Bonus: Ween - 12 Golden Country Greats (1996) A [4 listens B/A-/A-/A] Country is still a somewhat foreign genre for me and I've been kinda bored with the concept of it. But it's Ween, so they've fully earned my trust at this point so I'll give this a try. This style is more or less my biggest indifference with the genre: it's not heavy enough to be impactful as rock, yet not soft enough to be as intimate as Folk. It's in this inbetween grey area where it's just not super captivating for me. With that said, it's rarely has been the "so bad, I can't stand to listen to it" levels of boredom that it has been made out as. That signature tongue-in-cheek humor of Ween is here and it makes the project more enjoyable. With Ween, whether it's supposed to be satirical or serious, the quality of songwriting is always top tier, so it's very easy to take whatever they're doing with my full respect rather than viewing it as just a joke. Japanese Cowboy, Mister Richard Smoker, Powder Blue, Piss Up a Rope and You Were the Fool (the best one) are my favorites; but other than Fluffy, every song is a good time. What really sells this album in particular, is that none of these songs would sound out of place on one of their other Rock centric albums, which allows me to extend a lot more grace towards it. Pretty good listen. For what it is, it's pretty consistent, but there's of course better Ween albums out there.
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2023.05.31 16:18 perfectprescript10n Lib heaven

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2023.05.31 16:08 SpacePaladin15 The Nature of Predators 120

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Memory transcription subject: Captain Sovlin, United Nations Fleet Command
Date [standardized human time]: January 15, 2137
The predators’ war strategy hinged around hitting the two Federation founders where it hurt. The Kolshians always offer severe resistance, as they proved they could hold their own against the masters of killing, after all. During my therapy sessions, one topic discussed was the reality that the Commonwealth could’ve intervened on the cradle. They’d possessed the technology and the numbers to smack an Arxur raid down like it was nothing; instead, they’d watched as the Gojids were pushed to the precipice of extinction.
Had I known about Nikonus’ apathetic view of our woes, back when Cilany and I visited Aafa, I would’ve gutted him with my claws then. The Kolshians would be the more satisfying of the founding duo to combat; I could envision the smug look on their chief’s face. However, on an objective level, it was clear-cut which conspirator was the easiest to undermine. The Farsul States were the brains of the empire, and their worlds were ripe for the taking.
The Farsul and the Kolshians disagreed on the handling of humanity’s survival, with the States contributing to the ill-fated extermination fleet. Their ships were known for being damage-sponges, a more prey-like and displayable attribute than their conspiratorial counterparts. The Farsul elders, like their Ambassador Darq, made a grave error of judgment at the summit on humanity; tipped off about their genocide participation by Earth, the Arxur moved in on their homeworld, Talsk. The grays’ raid nearly succeeded, and was warded off with substantial losses.
I’m sure Talsk has rebuilt its forces, just as Earth has replaced their army. Still, they’ve been weakened by the war, while the Kolshians have been waiting in the wings.
Cilany listened astutely, as I told her via FTL call-link what I was authorized to disclose. “So let me get this straight. You’re going to drop into Talsk’s inner orbit within minutes, and land solely to access the Galactic Archives?”
“That’s correct,” I answered. “Humanity can’t afford to spare troops on an occupation. They don’t bomb civilians either. The goal is to trap the Farsul within their own world, and cut them off from the galaxy.”
“And they’re pulling any crew with training in ground combat from the starship? Including you and your human pals.”
“Crewing the ships was equally as difficult as building them, Cilly. Logistically, we don’t want more mouths to feed up here, and we also need men for every battleground and occupation across the galaxy. Sillis, Fahl, Mileau, ground defenses. If you can hold a gun and keep your wits, you’re part of the landing party.”
Tyler referred to it as being a utility player in a game called baseball, which involved smacking a stone with a metal club. I didn’t grasp what he was on about, and I didn’t dare to ask. That human was rather unapologetic with his predatory hobbies.
Cilany pressed her toes to her head. “So you’re cobbling together the ‘nonessentials' from your ship, and they’re all heading planetside during an orbital battle? That’s suicide.”
“The predators have a distraction planned. The Farsul ships should be…concerned with other events. I’ll be fine. We’ve got a plan.”
A plan that involves de-orbiting a lunar body, and fits in with the general picture of Terran psychosis. A normal day in the United Nations’ service.
“Thanks for the non-answer,” the Harchen reporter grumbled. “I thought we were friends, Sovlin! Give me something. Like…why was there satellite footage of naval armaments being loaded on to Terran carriers, which we know from subspace trails were heading Federation-bound?”
That was the other deranged part of the mission, which was anything but a routine landing. The Terrans noticed a patch of Talsk’s ocean was unreadable by standard sensors, during stealth recon. Intelligence coupled this with communications between Archives staff, discussing “shipping exercises.” Like any normal species, the primates drew the conclusion that the Farsul were hiding incriminating information underwater…and based their mission parameters on this assumption.
Did the United Nations believe that habitats under the ocean were possible? If the humans weren’t grasping at straws on this one, I’d be beyond impressed with their deductive skills. At this point, I didn’t think their insanity was up for debate. Cilany wasn’t going to hear intel that was damaging to their species’ reasoning skills from me.
“Don’t pretend you don’t know about the boats,” she pressed. “What good do those do in an orbital clash? Are you landing by water ship?”
I jabbed a sharp claw at the camera. “If you wanted to know that, you’d be here with us. They’d sign off on it, undoubtedly. Believe it or not, humans send reporters with their troops into war zones.”
“I’ve heard of them. ‘War correspondents,’ covering conflict from the front lines, armed only with a camera. I’m willing to take risks for a scoop, but that’s lunacy! I, as a non-human, like to gather my stories in areas without active firefights.”
“These FTL comms saved your ass then. You’d be out of the loop for weeks. I’ll keep you informed of the results when the mission is complete.”
“I won’t push you more, for now. Whatever you find in the Archives, I want to be the first to know.”
“I’ll see what I can do. So long.”
My eyes turned to the triangular shuttle waiting in the hangar bay. I was aware the Terrans had a myriad of new contraptions, but this design seemed foolhardy to me. A narrow, aerodynamic vehicle was optimal for atmospheric travel. Thankfully, I didn’t have to pilot this craft; while it was made to transport crew, it was self-flying.
Samantha and Carlos had saved me a seat, while Tyler and Onso manned what was considered the back-up pilot and co-pilot’s chairs. What I’d been told at the briefing was that we would descend to sea level, before transferring to a submarine. My immediate inquiry was if the humans had ever seen a Gojid swim, but they just laughed. The amusement was followed by a patronizing smile, and a response of “That won’t be necessary.”
I swear, if the plan is for me to ride on Carlos’ back and no one is telling me, I’m gonna claw some binocular eyes out.
“Hello, Onso.” I recalled Dr. Bahri’s advice to be kinder to the primitive in my inner dialogue, rather than regarding him only by his innate ignorance. “You ready?”
The Yotul flicked his reddish ears. “I mentioned on shore leave that I wanted to break Farsul skulls. They have their paws in every pot, every mind in the Federation. I’m sure as shit ready to fight them.”
“I’ll be honest, I’m a little nervous. Land creatures don’t belong…sinking into the ocean. I mean, this submersible ship does not float. How do we get back up?”
“Same as flying. Air currents versus water currents. You trust human tech or you don’t.”
“I’m more comfortable in space too, but it’s good the navy is finally going to get a cut of the action. Humanity needs to win on every terrain and theater of war,” Carlos growled.
“My comments about the space era aged like milk,” Samantha griped. “I called a sailor friend of John…of my husband’s ‘obsolete’, and now they’re airdropping warboats. Just my luck; I’ll never hear the end of it if they get a single kill.”
I gently tapped her hand with my paw. “It might be good for you to reconnect with some of your old friends.”
“Spare me the ‘Kumbaya’ therapy shit. I mean, good for you, but you don’t need to proselytize.”
Tyler cleared his throat. “Let’s keep it professional, people. We’re pulling a stealth jump behind each of Talsk’s four moons, but we can’t get closer than that. Entering real space any second.”
“As if you’re professional,” Onso snorted.
“Remind me how many game controllers you’ve broken? We’re so close to kicking these Feddies in the backside, and I want—no, I need to get this perfect. Are all of you ready?”
“I’d like to live to see the Federation fall,” Sam sighed. “Ready, sir.”
“And I’d like to live to see galactic peace,” Carlos countered. “Ready here too, sir.”
Before I could offer up my own assent, Tyler raised a hand for silence. The shuttle’s digitized replica of the main viewport depicted the shadow of a moon, and a small handful of human carriers snuck through other gravitational hiding spots as well. Launching too soon or too late would result in our demise. We had to wait for the distraction to draw the Farsul’s attention; I had no idea how humans planned to move the smallest lunar satellite.
The fact that we got this close, under their nose, shows the lasting consequences of the Arxur attack. The Farsul’s barebones defenses aren’t equipped to catch us in their net; their outposts, with key scanners, were picked apart too.
The enemy would be alerted to our presence, once the predators made their move to disturb the smallest moon. The target body lagged a short ways behind our satellite haven’s orbit, which meant our carrier could watch the show. Human military affairs always intrigued me, from how they conjured the impossible with every battle. There was “thinking outside the box”, and then there was ignoring the box’s existence altogether. Rules and conventional wisdom didn’t apply to them.
Our viewport plucked stills of box-shaped human craft. In real time, they were blurs that accelerated from behind the target moon’s shadow; that energy expenditure definitely caught the Farsul’s eyes. The objects had been gaining momentum within subspace, and exited warp at a mind-boggling pace. These were evident drones, though they were unlike the Terrans’ conventional battle technology. I squinted in confusion, as the lead cubical craft blazed toward the deformed rock without slowing.
The first impact caused a geyser of debris to erupt from the moon, while the drone was obliterated. There appeared to be a slight slowing of the lunar body’s orbit, though it was fractional. It was insanity to think they could redirect a celestial object’s momentum. The humans were undeterred, however, and launched more of the peculiar boxes into the moon.
“Reverent Protector,” I murmured. “They’re chipping away at its momentum. Throwing ships at it…”
“Until it changes course.” Carlos released a shrill noise by blowing air through his teeth, which made me flinch. “It’s simple kinetic impact. I remember we used this same tech to deflect an asteroid from Earth back in 2129.”
Onso flicked his ears. “It’s like shifting a boulder that’s already rolling downhill. It’s got a shit ton of momentum, but you collide enough objects, with enough force, and you could theoretically change where it’s rolling to.”
“So this was a brute-force planetary defense system, that you weaponized because you’re predators. Carry on, I guess,” I huffed.
Panicked Farsul ships rushed toward the moon, but they, understandably, were not prepared to stop murderous monkeys from dislodging a massive satellite. The United Nations chipped away at the orbital momentum, deflection by deflection, until the speeding rock had visibly changed its arc. Talsk’s gravity won out in the absence of a blistering orbital velocity, and the mile-wide rock began to careen toward the planet.
Tyler took that as our cue to launch the triangular shuttle, which was prepped for this moment, away from our carrier. The Farsul vessels concentrated fire on their falling moon, and struggled to simultaneously fend off Terran warships which harassed them on approach. To top it off, our big guns were within orbital range, but the predators were using precision strikes against bases rather than antimatter city hits.
There was no way for the enemy to watch for surface-bound transports, with all of the chaos preoccupying them. I wasn’t surprised that no craft moved to intercept us, and that the ride down to Talsk’s surface looked to be seamless. The idea of descending below the ocean still left me riddled with unease; my spines were bristling, and it wasn’t from the humans’ eyes.
“Your crazy plan worked.” I tried to focus on the Farsul missiles fruitlessly impacting their own moon, rather than the blue patches enlarging before us. “I’d love to have ears inside the enemy ships. They don’t even know what hit them.”
“Ah, yes. Doesn’t it suck when your moon becomes a meteor with a few love taps?” Sam snickered.
Tyler allowed himself an amused snort. “Yeah, I hate when that happens. Really ruins your day.”
We breached the atmosphere in graceful flight, with flaming resistance enveloping our ship outside. The battle overhead receded into the background; it wasn’t our job to spectate the Farsul moon’s fate. Our shuttle’s autopilot had everything under control, throttling through the outer bands of a foreign world. It slowed our pace to a manageable glide, once the sparkling ocean grew nearer. Water stretched as far as the eye could see, even from hundreds of meters up.
There was nowhere to land that I could make out, and the ropes and parachutes at the rear of the aircraft pushed a suggestion into my brain. What if the plan was for us to jump or rappel from the aircraft, onto a submarine’s hull? Where were the submersibles anyways…had their airdrop not preceded us as planned? My claws wrapped around the harness tighter; everything that could go wrong was at the forefront of my mind.
We’re slowing down, but not fast enough! Something must be off with the computer. We’re going to slam belly-first into the water, not hover.
The humans weren’t panicking, so I tried to convince myself that those thoughts were my fear speaking. However, the choppiness of the waves was visible, and I saw no way to stop in time…at least, not without an inertial dampener failure and the death of us all. My remaining spines were trying to escape from my back; I was almost ready to scream to brace for impact. A mechanism shifted in the shuttle’s belly, and it was then that I suspected we were gliding for a landing.
We touched the surface of the water, but instead of sinking, we bobbed gently like a leaf. Our supports splashed the water, and slowed, while balancing atop the waves like it was nothing. I breathed an uneasy sigh of relief, grateful that I had kept my mouth shut amid the humans’ composure. The predators always had wild plans, like plunking an airworthy craft into desolate seas. We were out of the proverbial burrows.
Then, without warning, the floats gave out, dropping all support from the triangular craft. Primal terror gnawed at my heart, as our ship started to sink.
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Toyota has long had an image of quiet sensibleness about it. They used to be the sort of car bought by those who prioritise reliability above all else, and for whom excitement is anathema. That has begun to change, and not just in the fire-breathing GR models. Outgoing Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda (grandson of the company founder) is a car nut to his fingertips, and waged a long campaign to make his family company’s products more exciting to drive, and to look at.

The once-bland Corolla has been a major part of that plan, relaunched in 2019 with sharper styling and a more invigorating driving experience. Now, for 2023, it’s getting a facelift (of the most minor sort) and an upgrade to its hybrid powertrain. Does that make it a more interesting prospect still, or is Toyota once again playing it safe?

Exterior design and rivals
If you can line up the outgoing Corolla and the new side by side and spot all the differences, you’ll probably win a Toyota-branded anorak. The updated Corolla looks all-but identical to the outgoing one, with only the front bumper, the internal bits of the head- and tail-lights and the back bumper actually new. There are some updated alloy wheel designs, admittedly, and a couple of new paint options including the handsome new ‘Juniper Blue’ finish pictured here.

For all its familiarity. the Corolla remains a smart looking car. It can even look enticingly sporty at times, especially in estate form, and especially in the more overt GR Sport trim (not to be confused with the actual GR Corolla hot hatch that British buyers are still denied). The blandness of previous models has been thoroughly banished, and the Corolla is much the better for it.

Will that be enough to give the Corolla more kerbside and showroom appeal than the new Honda Civic, or the venerable Volkswagen Golf? Perhaps — impressive though the new Civic is, it is a very conservatively-styled car on the outside, while the droopy-nosed eighth-generation Golf is looking tired already, unless you get a sporty model such as the GTI.

Hyundai’s handsome i30 Fastback is arguably the Corolla’s sharpest looking rival, although it currently lacks any kind of hybrid or plug-in hybrid option, while the Skoda Octavia provides a strong contest, as not only is it quietly handsome on the outside, it’s significantly more spacious than the Corolla inside.

Interior and practicality
Toyota has made more meaningful changes to the Corolla’s interior, but those changes come under the heading of technology, so we’ll cover those below. Elsewhere, the overall shapes and styling are the same as before, and so too are the exceptional quality levels — the Corolla remains a car able to put much more expensive models to shame with its cabin quality.

It’s far from the roomiest car around, though. While the front seats are very comfortable and supportive, and the driving position good, the high centre console and the way the dashboard design juts outward above your knees makes the car feel a touch cramped, especially if you’re tall.

There’s also a lack of storage space. The box under the front armrest, the door bins and the little shelf in front of the gear lever (which is optionally occupied by a wireless phone charger) are all a bit small, so there isn’t quite enough room for all your keys, wallets, water bottles and so on.

In the five-door hatchback there’s simply not enough legroom for one tall adult to sit behind another. If you’re going to accommodate anyone over the age of 13 in the back seats, the driver and front passenger are going to have to slide their seats forward. Headroom is also less than generous.

The boot isn’t much better. Even Toyota people will admit that the 361-litre boot is less than class leading, some 20 litres shy of the Golf’s and hundreds of litres smaller than a Skoda Octavia’s. The only upside is that the Toyota’s boot is roomier or at least as roomy as some plug-in hybrid rivals — such as the Vauxhall Astra.

You’d be much better off in the Corolla Touring Sports estate. This sits on a structure with the front and rear wheels pushed apart by 10cm and which offers rear space that, if not exactly generous, is at least adequate.

The Touring Sport’s boot is more useful, too — at 598 litres up to the luggage cover it’s not the biggest in the class, but it’s more than enough for most purposes. Fold the estate’s back seats flat (disappointingly, they only split 60:40, compared to the 40:20:40 of the Peugeot 308 SW) and you’ve got 1,606 litres of load space.

Technology and safety
The new 12.3in digital driver’s display is a welcome replacement for the previous mixed analogue and digital instrument panel, which looked tired and old even when it was new.

The new digital screen is much sharper, and while you’ll have to submit to a somewhat confusing settings menu to alter the layout, you can at least do so. The graphics look crisp, too.

A dramatic backlit side view of the Corolla pops up as you switch driving modes.

In the centre of the dash is a new 10.5in touchscreen infotainment system, which is a massive improvement on that of the outgoing Corolla.

Its graphics are bang up to date, and its menu layout is significantly more simple and logical. Toyota has helpfully retained physical stereo volume buttons, as well as separate physical heating and ventilation controls, which makes life much easier and safer on the move.

The screen includes a cloud-based navigation system that can give you live traffic advice, but which can be a touch laggy and slip behind the physical position of the car if you’re in an area of low mobile reception.

The Corolla now has a built-in antenna for internet connectivity, though, which powers that cloud-based nav, and which is free to use for the first four years of ownership. It also enables connection to your mobile phone through an app, which allows you to monitor the car’s various functions, flash the lights in a busy car park so that you can find it and remotely start the climate control so that you can cool the car down, or defrost it, before leaving the house.

The app, called MyT, also includes hybrid driving tips for anyone new to part-battery driving.

The Corolla already had a full five-star rating from Euro NCAP when it comes to crash safety, but Toyota has updated and upgraded the electronic safety kit under the name T-Mate. That upgrade includes a new forward-facing camera and radar that are claimed to be more effective than before, and which give the Corolla standard-fit adaptive cruise control.

The camera also allows for a new system called Proactive Driving Assist (PDA) — while this has some familiar functions such as collision warnings, it also includes a new active braking system that automatically ramps up the amount of energy recovered back into the battery when you lift off the accelerator while approaching a corner or when there’s a slower moving car in front.

It’s not quite ‘one-pedal’ driving, but it’s quite a useful and intuitive system that is backed up by a new active steering assistant that can help you swerve away from danger in an extreme situation.

Optionally, you can fit your Corolla with a blind-spot monitor and a rear cross-traffic alert, and with these systems comes an extra one — Safe Exit Assist, which warns you if you’re about to open a door into the path of an oncoming cyclist. It only works on the front doors, though, and unlike Hyundai’s system — which will actually inhibit the door latch to stop you opening it — the Corolla just has a flashing light and a warning beep.

Performance, power output and acceleration
While the engine capacity of the basic 1.8-litre Corolla hybrid has remained the same, Toyota says that has been significantly upgraded as part of its new fifth-generation hybrid setup. For the 1.8, that means a new, more efficient, lithium-ion battery and a more powerful — 94bhp and 136lb ft of torque — electric motor, as well as a new computer brain.

The effect of all that is higher peak power — 138bhp now, up from 121bhp previously — and the same or better efficiency.

The 2-litre version also gets more power — it’s now up to 193bhp — and it’s slightly lighter than before as it has switched from a nickel metal hydride battery to a lithium-ion pack.

The 1.8 version arguably makes the 2-litre model redundant, as its extra power is really only noticeable under hard acceleration and that’s just not how you drive a Corolla hybrid. Much better to accelerate relatively gently, and let the improved electric motor do more of the work.

Do that and you’ll not only save fuel (55mpg is easy, beyond 60mpg is certainly possible), but you’ll also save your ears. Toyota has worked hard — and largely successfully — over the years to remove from its hybrids the high-revving noise when accelerating, and it’s certainly noticeable that the Corolla spends less time grinding away at high rpm to gather speed on the motorway. Long uphill runs are not its friend, but noise levels are rarely excessive in day-to-day driving.

The extra power on offer has given the Corolla swifter 0-62mph times — 9.1 seconds for the 1.8, 7.4 seconds for the 2-litre, but you’ll need to be in Sport mode if you want to feel the system at its highest performing. In the more likely event that you’re driving in Normal or Eco modes, the Corolla’s hybrid engine just rows along nicely, if unspectacularly.

It’s certainly more noticeable how much more of the work is done by the electric motor than before. Not so long ago, you had to drive any Toyota hybrid with exceptional care to keep it running on electric power – as indicated by a little “EV” icon in the instruments. Now, you can accelerate quite decisively, and get well above 30mph before the petrol engine wakes up.

Toyota reckons that as much as 80 per cent of urban journeys in a Corolla can be done on just electric power, which is impressive if it can be replicated (we scored an apparent 50 per cent electric ratio on our mixed country road, motorway and town drive if the dashboard display is to be believed).

Ride and handling
In 2019, the Corolla was almost shocking in how nice it was to drive. Previous generations had been pretty forgettable, but with this 12th generation, suddenly there was sharp steering and a willing, engaging chassis. That carries forward to the updated model.

Comfort is still clearly more of a priority than excitement. The Corolla rides firmly, but with a well-damped sense of comfort. It only gets harsh if you spec it up with the 18in alloy wheels of the GR Sport models. The mid-spec 17in wheels are perfectly fine when it comes to comfort, although all Corolla models seem to suffer from too much tyre roar on coarse tarmac, which does spoil the refinement.

The steering is light but very fluid in feel and quite quick across its locks. The Corolla also seems to have plenty of front-end grip in reserve, so tightening corners hold no great fears.

It’s not as sharp in its steering feel as say a Ford Focus or a Mazda3, but it’s certainly satisfying, and on a twisty mountain road it’s easy to get the Corolla into a pleasant and enjoyable rhythm, sweeping from corner to corner.

That Proactive Driving Assist also helps, as the extra bit of regenerative braking when approaching a bend can help you better balance the car on corner entry, so it’s as much a driving aid as a safety and energy-saving feature.

Pricing and on-sale date
The Corolla is on sale now and prices start from £30,210 for an Icon spec hatchback with the 1.8-litre hybrid engine. Standard spec for Icon models includes 16in alloys, LED headlights, the 12.3in digital instrument screen, the 10.5in infotainment system with online connectivity and cloud-based navigation, a wireless phone charger, keyless entry and ignition, two-zone air conditioning, a reversing camera, front and rear parking sensors and heated front seats.

If you want the 2-litre engine in Icon form, that’ll cost you £31,955 while the Touring Sports estate costs £31,545 with the 1.8 engine, or £33,290 as a 2-litre, both in Icon spec.

For £31,780 you can upgrade your 1.8 hatchback to Design spec, which comes with 17in machined-look alloy wheels, uprated LED headlights, rear privacy glass, auto-folding door mirrors, rain sensing wipers, ambient cabin lighting and a self-dimming rear-view mirror. A 2-litre hatch in Design spec costs £33,525, while the estate 1.8 Design is £33,115 and the 2-litre Design is £34,860.

Sporty-looking GR Sport spec starts from £32,990 for the 1.8 hatchback (£34,735 for the 2-litre and £34,705 or £36,450 for the 1.8 and 2-litre Touring Sports respectively). For that you get a chunky body kit with unique front and rear bumper designs, 18in dark grey alloys, black door mirror caps, red contrast stitching for the inside (along with embossed GR Sport logos) and the option of a contrast-colour roof.

At the top of the range is the Excel model, which will set you back £33,400 for the 1.8 hatch; £35,145 for the 2-litre hatch; £35,115 for the 1.8 estate; or £36,860 for the 2-litre estate. Standard Excel equipment includes 18in alloys, adaptive high-beam control, leather upholstery, a head-up display, blind-spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert, safe exit assist and the option of a panoramic glass sunroof.

Verdict: Toyota Corolla Hybrid review
The fact that Toyota hasn’t changed the Corolla much is perhaps not very surprising. After all, in 2021, the 50 millionth Corolla was sold, underscoring the success of the model’s history of steady evolution rather than stunning revolution.

It remains a sensible choice, and the upgrades to the hybrid system are welcome both for the extra power and for the still-excellent economy. It’s no high-performance ball of fire but the Corolla is sharper and more rewarding to drive than you might expect. Given Toyota’s well-earned reputation for reliability, it should be a satisfying car to own in the long term.

Source: driving co
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