>For those who have military loved ones:

>This is a guide on what they can and cannot tell you about where they are and what they’re doing, assuming that there is no other classified reason for them to be silent.

(It’s from the plan of the day from my ship, and I thought it might be liked.)

3. OPSEC NOTE: The following operational information is considered classified and should be protected as such:
a. Precise current or future operational deployment location of surface ships.
b. Planned foreign port calls for all U.S. ships. Foreign port calls of all U.S. vessels are NOT classified after the host government approves visit.
c. Detailed employment schedules are classified due to aggregation of data.
d. Actual dates of current and future surface ship routine operations of any duration, including deployments. All personnel must do their best not to disclose future operational planning. A terrorist group cannot plan an attack if it does not know when the ship will be inport.

OPSEC is Operations Security. Apparently, taking the first letters of words is passe. All the cool kids take chunks out of their words to make super-cool secret names.

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>Some things just don’t translate….

>I log on this morning– we pulled into Guam, and we just got out on liberty– and started going through the blogs I look at everyday.

My boyfriend, who is also a geek who plays on his computer on a tropical island, is across the desk from me. He still isn’t quite getting why I’m excited about “some guy called Vodkapundit” putting up a post that has my screen name in it.

This is about as nifty as anything that’s happened since…. *thinks a moment* I made second class, actually. (AT2) (It was only about 8 months ago, probably a bit less, but still!)

I’m nearly positive that mom won’t understand the nifty aspect….

Anybody who comes from Vodkapundit, this place has none of the cool design and such, only odd rambling from my POV.

Be well!

>Oh, the irony–

>Tell me, is it not ironic that various members of the Church, who– quite reasonably– get peeved when folks throw fits about what those folks *think* the Church is/does/believes, then turn around and make it look silly by doing the same to a game? I’m speaking of Dungeons and Dragons. If you’re convinced that that 80s movie is The Whole Truth and that anything I say against it is mush, please leave now. Don’t waste your time. That movie was based on the story of a guy with serious mental problems who got involved with a strange LARP group (Live Action Role Playing– as opposed to D&D, which his pencil and paper).

That’s not even getting into the whole bearing false witness stuff. This guy claims that D&D writers contacted him to make sure that the rituals in the book are accurate. Here, let me go get my D&D player’s guide– find one short enough to quote– ah, Bear’s Endurance, page 203 of the PHB 3.5. I’ll spare you the whole gibberish on who can use it and tell you that it’s a transmutation spell, available to clerics, druids, rangers, and sorcerers/wizards as a level 2 spell. It’s a touch spell with a will save negetation, and spell resistance applies.
description: “The affected creature gains greater vitality and stamina. The spell grants the subject a +4 enhancement bonus to constitution, which adds the usual benefits to hit points, fortitude saves, constitution checks and so forth.
Hit points gained by a temporary increase in constitution score are not temporary hit points. They go away when the subject’s constitution drops back to normal. They are not lost first as temporary hit points are (see page 146).”

I’m not seeing any rituals.

After some searching, I found a spell that might upset folks– Augury. Basicly, seeing if anything outstanding will happen in the next half hour. It lists a material component of “incense worth at least 25gp” and a focus of “a set of marked sticks, bones or similar tokens of at least 25gp value.” (A gp is a gold piece.) The rest of it is much like the paragraph above– informing you that a good base likelihood of a relevant result is 70+1 per caster level, with a max of 90%. (possible results: good, bad, good and bad, no result)
Anybody about to jump on that and say “see! See! Magic!”? It’s game mechanics. Everyone has to list what they’re carrying, and for that matter they have to *buy* what they’re carrying. In most games, 25 gold is a lot. This spell could be very overpowered, so they added difficulty to using it– although some Dungeon Masters ignore material component requirements in favor of the simpler, classic “I cast magic missile.” (Those of you who added “at the darkness!”– welcome, fellow geeks!)

Alright, so you might think I’m biased, given that I do play D&D. (although I prefer BESM– Big Eyes, Small Mouth– an anime based RPG. I adore my 5′ mini-gun wielding gun bunny/werefox schoolgirl. Er…it makes more sense if you played. That sort of over the top stuff is pretty common, kinda like the ninja who had a demon in his gut that made him a great fighter, but kept trying to eat party members. Or the giant gnoll samurai who dyes his hair black and only speaks Japanese and goblinoid…. Anime style weirdness.)
yanks herself back to the topic at hand
Well, perhaps I’m biased, and perhaps I just am familiar enough to know that many of the things D&D is accused of either aren’t so or are way overblown. How about this discussion from a website I adore? A joke post that requires familiarity with D&D, and not a single post saying “No! Dungeons and dragons is evil!” How about this one that directly comments on the moral dimensions of D&D? Although I disagree on the alignment mentioned– frankly, I’m the only one in my gaming group who will play a Lawful Good.

Alright, let me explain alignments.
There is Good, Neutral and Evil, with the adaptors of Lawful, Neutral and Chaotic. The former three are pretty obvious, and the Lawful means you follow laws to the exclusion of all else, while Chaotic basically does whatever it feels like.
To make it a bit easier: The Pope is Lawful Good, a Judge– that is, one who cares only for the law– is Lawful Neutral, a serial killer is Chaotic Evil. If you’ve got a good DM, he’ll make sure that either you act like your alignment or you actually change the alignment.
For example, if a player is a necromancer (raises and controls undead monsters) they have to be of an evil alignment. If the player acts like a good character– say, saving someone when there is every reason for the character to want him dead– then he might have to change alignments and lose the undead powers. On the flip side, a Paladin– Lawful Good requirement– who’s going around killing people who ask for mercy, ignoring calls for help or ignoring laws all together is likely to lose his alignment and powers as well.
Most players try to do what they think is right, but sometimes ignore laws or conflicting calls. (Like Spiderman when he could save the bus full of kids or MJ. If he’d chosen the kids, it would be a lawful course. If he chose MJ, it would be chaotic– the good that felt best; what he did was neutral good, because it attempted to save both.)
My favorite character, the gunbunny I mentioned above, is chaotic neutral. For example, when the group is fighting something, she tends to mow it down with her gun. If someone runs in front of her, she will try not to hit them and will yell for them to get down. If they don’t, she’ll fire anyways. (Unless it’s one of the characters she has an emotional attachement to. Which, luckily, is most of the party.)
My boyfriend’s favorite alignment is Lawful Neutral, because of the interesting situations it can bring up. (Can’t be that he’s a rulemonger, right? ;^))
Another friend loves being Chaotic Evil and trying to kill off the party without anyone noticing. (He usually fails.)
Oh, and the joy of role playing is that you can’t use out of character knowledge. It takes real skill to KNOW that your character will probably die if she walks into the next room, but do it anyways because that is what they’d do.

Long story short, one reason I love D&D is that it has good, evil and isn’t shy about separating the two. Good people you would want to know. Evil people you want to be gone. Although BESM is still better for the humor aspect!

>Oh yes I do love these…

>Although I’m a bit worried at #2. Spiderman and HULK?!?! I can see Peter Parker with a couple of d20, but… I’m accident prone, not homicidal.

Your results:
You are Spider-Man

Spider-Man
90%
Hulk
85%
Superman
65%
Green Lantern
60%
Catwoman
60%
Supergirl
55%
Wonder Woman
50%
Robin
48%
The Flash
45%
Iron Man
45%
Batman
30%
You are intelligent, witty,
a bit geeky and have great
power and responsibility.
Click here to take the Superhero Personality Test

>Heh, I love these things….

>

You scored as Galactica (Battlestar: Galactica). You are leery of your surroundings, and with good reason. Anyone could be a cylon. But you have close friends and you know they would never hurt you. Now if only the damn XO would stop drinking.

Galactica (Battlestar: Galactica)

81%

Babylon 5 (Babylon 5)

75%

Moya (Farscape)

75%

Serenity (Firefly)

69%

SG-1 (Stargate)

69%

Nebuchadnezzar (The Matrix)

69%

Millennium Falcon (Star Wars)

63%

Andromeda Ascendant (Andromeda)

56%

Deep Space Nine (Star Trek)

56%

FBI's X-Files Division (The X-Files)

50%

Bebop (Cowboy Bebop)

50%

Enterprise D (Star Trek)

50%

Your Ultimate Sci-Fi Profile II: which sci-fi crew would you best fit in? (pics)
created with QuizFarm.com

>1.15 score years ago….

>Well, and a day or so…. I was born.

Dang, I almost feel old.

I’m at the OLD end of college aged, and still don’t know what I want to do!

Well, not exactly true, I know EXACTLY what I want to do: Love, be loved, protect those I love.

The details just ain’t there yet.

I get out of the Navy this time next year, God willing. I have many hopes, but I’m really not sure what I’ll do. I’d like to go to school, but I’m not sure what for– I need to get at least a BS or BA. I’ve wanted to do that ever since I was a little girl and came home in tears because the teacher told me that I was a liar and my grandmothers couldn’t have had college education. My father’s mother is the daughter of Scottish immigrants, home schooled, who went to college at 16 or so and was a newspaper reporter up to a few years ago. My mother’s mother is from Kansas, moved to Oregon and married a Kansas-born Lumberjack, had some college and became a court stenographer. Both of them knew shorthand, an undertaking that boggles my mind.
My mom went to college because her mother wanted at least one of the kids to, and because she promised God she would if only her brother wasn’t dead. (Vietnam)
She worked like a dog to pay for it, and got a BS in– I think– Animal Husbandry, with a minor in teaching.

Dad’s dad was a banker, although I don’t know anything about his college (Grampa Gail died when I was about three, but I can still see him plain as day….) and dad got an AA from the Army because of Vietnam.

I remember seeing that dad didn’t “need” the college he got, and that mom didn’t use her college much– unless she was substitute teaching, which to my mind wasn’t very often– but that knowing stuff was Important. It was good for you. And the things they knew, and the way they could think….

My mother must take the blame for starting my most annoying habit (well, that and chewing my nails): arguing with the TV, radio and written word if they employ faulty reasoning. I just can’t stand it when someone who should know better says something that is obviously false, such as “a fetus isn’t a human!” Wrong, wrong, scientifically wrong: they MEAN they don’t think it’s a person. Human is a biological term. Or, less likely to get hackles up, when folks say that “science proves–” (insert recent study here). Science really doesn’t prove very much at all, because that’s not the point: science is supposed to try to figure out what happens and why, and make rules to figure out what will happen next, not to say “thus and such is true forever more.” If you read a paper by a scientist, they double-hedge so much that you feel like getting shrub clippers out to use on them. “If, in a select situation, the above mentioned conditions are in existence, and the before stated exceptions are not, there is a high possibility that the therorized(sp) situation could possibly come in to being.” There’s just so MUCH going on in almost anything that’s interesting to science– even with gravity, outside of lab conditions, you’d have to say something like “dropping objects that exceed the ratio of X weight to Y surface area in a location with minimal wind will fall from point A directly down to point B at a constant speed.” (That’s all you can prove without a vacuum– imagine trying to prove that everything falls at the same speed with a bowling ball and a feather, in the middle of a windstorm.) Basically, just because something is *true* doesn’t mean that a given study will prove it. And just because a study seems to prove something doesn’t mean that it’s true. (feather and bowling ball.)

Hm. That’s a rather lot of rambling, even for me. Star off with “Hey, I’m 23!” go into family history and end up with “Science is a tool to use carefully, and read the instruction manual, please.”

Ah, well, to keep with the random theme: I’ve got a picture gallery! http://sailorette.smugmug.com/

A former sailor's ramblings on anything from family, country and Church through general geek-ness.