Tuesday, June 17, 2014

100 Words a Day 637, 23 Untranslatable Words From Other Languages 7/23

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Waldeinsamkeit, that was the only way to describe the feeling. I was surrounded by figures as I walked through the woods. They didn’t speak to me, nor even acknowledge my presence. They beings made no noise and disturbed nothing as they floated, so it seemed to me, through the woods. Their bodies were translucent, almost clear, and I would lose track of them in the fading light. As the sun descended, I began to feel more and more alone. I continued through the night, using a lantern to find the forest trail. The wraiths were invisible in the dark night

Monday, June 16, 2014

100 Words a Day 636, 23 Untranslatable Words From Other Languages 6/23

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“The advent of the ereader and permafree has resulted in two phenomena, a reduction in the volume of books cluttering people’s houses and an increase in tsundoku. People have easy access to more books than ever; you can download whole catalogues of work with the touch of a button. However, these books are competing for attention with a myriad of similarly easy to access distractions, and, as a consequence, often remain unread. People who would like to be readers are finding themselves with more space, because they no longer need to physically store their books, but more unopened, unread books.”

100 Words a Day 635, 23 Untranslatable Words From Other Languages 5/23

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Goru faced the man who blocked his way on the forest path, his enemy. The sun was overhead and the trees swayed in the cool breeze. The resulting komorebi made him squint, his eyes teased by the fluttering light. His sword emerged from the scabbard with a slow, scraping sound. He held the sword towards his opponent, turning the blade in hopes of reflecting the sunbeams into the man’s eyes. He advanced by sliding his feet forward, one at a time, along the ground, gripping the earth with his toes. The other man did the same. The two slowly closed.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

100 Words a Day 634, 23 Untranslatable Words From Other Languages 4/23

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A lot of tingo goes on in the neighborhoods of the space ring. It began when the wealthy pioneers of space living began rubbing shoulders with the poorer inhabitants, brought in as a part of the service economy or when the financial barrier to entry was lowered. The indolence of the rich meant that they failed to care when one of their less fortunate neighbors did not return some inconsequential item borrowed for some minor purpose. The resulting culture that developed was one where people never returned what they borrowed and too lazy to replace the items they were missing.

Friday, June 13, 2014

100 Words a Day 633, 23 Untranslatable Words From Other Languages 3/23

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“I hated Waiting for Godu; nothing grinds my gears like iktsaurpok,” Edward said.

“Excuse me?” Alex replied.

“Yeah. Nothing is worse than waiting around for someone. I’m always on time and hardly anyone I know is on time. I respect other people’s schedules and they don’t respect mine,” Edward ranted.

“Uh hu…” Alex replied. “Well, if you know people are going to be late, why don’t you just show up late yourself?”

“Because that’s rude!”

“Well, I suppose, if they end up arriving on time. But if you keep showing up on time when you know they won’t, that’s crazy.”

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

100 Words a Day 632, 23 Untranslatable Words From Other Languages 2/23

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“Papakata. Papakata. Papakata,” the children shouted as they chased Jeffery down the dirt road. The boy limped away from them as fast as possible, doing his best on uneven legs. One leg had recently become longer than the other and the other children had started teasing him mercilessly. It started with name calling and progressed to kids mimicking him, before arriving at his schoolmates assaulting him. Now he ran home as fast as possible after school. Initially, the other children caught him easily. He was beginning to get faster and they were beginning to get bored with the whole experience.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

100 Words a Day 631, 23 Untranslatable Words From Other Languages 1/23

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“I wish I was in France.”


“I wish I was in France. It’s so romantic there.”

“How would you know that? You’ve never been.”

“I just know. I can just imagine myself sitting in a little café by the Seine.

“Oh, and is Paris more beautiful in the rain?”

“Ugh, no Owen Wilson sucks. It’s more beautiful in the summer, when love is in the air.”

“Sounds like someone has a serious case of fernweh. Have you ever even met a French person? While they may have a reputation for being romantic, they definitely don’t have one for fidelity.”

Sunday, June 8, 2014

100 Words a Day 630 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived 27/27

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Her text had said it was lumming out. When she stepped into the room I figured it out.

“You’re soaked,” I said.

“Yes,” she replied, her ill humor evident in her voice as water soaked the floor beneath her feet.

“It’s kinda hot,” I said, with what I imagined was a twinkle in my eye.

“It is not hot. I am uncomfortable; I am cold; I want a hot shower.”

“Can I join you in this hot shower?” I asked, wiggling my eyebrows outrageously.

A hint of a smile shined through her disgruntled façade. “I suppose that might be acceptable.”

100 Words a Day 629 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived 26/27

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The curmuring began on the train. It was after the first murmur that I that I decided my initial conclusion as to whether or not those leftovers were still good had been wrong. As the rumblings in my gut worsened, it was as though I could feel the results of my bad decision traveling through my digestive track. I was clenched and sweating by the time I got to my interview. A look of understanding came over the receptionist when I asked where the bathroom was. I can only imagine what was going through her head as I waddled away.

100 Words a Day 628 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived 25/27

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“I broke up with him because he’s a slubberdergullion. It had nothing to do with his job,” Kathy said.

“A what?” Georgia asked, a look of confusion on her face.

“A slubberdergullion! A lout! A laze about! He just sat around all day.”

“Did he at least do some housework?”

“No! He just sat around getting fat, which I wouldn’t have minded if he was cleaning the house or working.”

“Yeah, if you aren’t keeping the house up or working, you should at least keep yourself nice to look at.”

“I know, right! Ugh, why are boys so fucking dumb.”

Thursday, June 5, 2014

100 Words a Day 627 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived 24/27

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“Yeah, I had to put H.P. Lovecraft down.”

“Why? His stuff is boss.”

“Yeah… It triggered my lethophobia.”

“What’s that?”

“Well, basically, I am afraid of the end of the world.”


“Yeah, so you can imagine how reading about something like the inevitable conquest of our reality by some being too terrible to comprehend makes me feel.”

“Ha, yeah. I can see why that might freak you out, dork.”

“Excuse me?”

“It’s just a scary story dude and it isn’t even that scary. Ooooh,” he said, waving his fingers for emphasis, “the unpronounceable monster is coming for us all.”

100 Words a Day 626 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived 23/27

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“Ow!” I cried, hopping up and down holding my foot, having stepped on my dice. I let out a sigh of relief as the pain faded, and sat down.

I just did not understand. I double checked the floor after we had finished playing Dungeons and Dragons, and I had not been able to find any dice. I was sure I put them all away.

It was just like them to be so resistentialist. Every time I rolled them it seemed they came up a one; it only makes sense that they would try to hurt me physically as well.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

100 Words a Day 625 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived 22/27

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“The theme of the effigy made animate goes back a considerable ways, perhaps beyond Galatea, and into the distant past. At the end of the twentieth century the character tended towards the benign. Pinocchio is a children’s story about a quokerwodger that is given life by supernatural means and goes on to experience a number of life lessons, for example. Since then, the animated figure has taken on a more diabolic form. Murderous dolls were only the beginning. It quickly became living statues devoid of all conscience before settling on machines, these metal figures crushing humanity with cold, steel fists.”

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

100 Words a Day 624 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived 21/27

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The jail contained two distinct groups Sunday morning. The first group would probably end up in prison. It consisted of people apprehended on suspicions of committing crimes, usually theft or assault. The second group consisted of people sleeping off a night of bad decisions, the first of which was having too much to drink.

Today, this second group consisted of teens. They had been hauled in, completely fuzzled, during a noise complaint. Someone’s parents were out of town and they had thrown a party with the liquor cabinet.

I wish I could be there when they get back into town.

Castle Ravenloft

Castle Ravenloft is a cooperative, exploration game based on the Dungeon and Dragon 4th edition rules. It is a recent addition to the adventure game genre and owes much to what is perhaps the most famous game of that type, Heroquest. The players take on the role of heroes, descending into the depths of a dungeon, or in this case, Castle Ravenloft. Unlike other adventure games, which require a player to run the dungeon and monsters, Castle Ravenloft is totally cooperative. The dungeon is generated randomly each playthrough, increasing replayability, and the monsters have scripts to determine how they act.

The mechanics of the game are loosely based around Dungeons and Dragons 4th edition, but lack much of the complexity and the roleplaying elements found in D&D. Each character begins the game with a number of powers that they can use during the adventure to fight monsters. In addition, each hero has an ability that enhances the fighting prowess of nearby heroes or helps defeat non-monster challenges. The mechanic for challenge resolution involves rolling a twenty-sided die, adding any bonuses, and comparing it against a difficulty number. If the total meets or exceeds the difficulty number, the roll is a success.

Gameplay is broken into turns. Each turn involves three phases: Hero, Exploration, and Villain. During the Hero phase, the player moves their piece through the dungeon and attacks monsters or disarms traps. During the Exploration phase a new piece of the dungeon is revealed along with any monsters or events associated it with. Finally, in the Villain phase, the monsters act.

The missions are diverse and challenge the players in a variety of fashions. There are a numerous boss fights, including one against a reanimated dragon skeleton. There are fetch quests, a defend the fort scenario, etc. One of the more difficult missions involves the players beginning isolated and unable to aid each other.

The high degree of difficulty makes Castle Ravenloft very satisfying. However, it does cause some problems. It feels necessary to always have one player take the role of the cleric. Without a doubt, the cleric is the least exciting character, but being able to heal the other players has proven, in my experience, to be too useful an ability to leave behind.

Castle Ravenloft is the first of three, so far, games based on the Dungeons and Dragons 4th edition rules and is regarded as the most difficult. There is a high degree of randomness, between the twenty-sided die, dungeon generation, monster spawning, and traps that can cause rapid and spectacular losses. That said, the more players there are, the less likely it is that a sudden Total Party Kill will occur. If you believe gaming is not fun unless it hurts, or if the idea of killing monsters and taking their stuff gets you out of bed in the morning, Castle Ravenloft is right up your alley.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

100 Words a Day 623 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived 20/27

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It was summer. Therefore, it was hot. I dragged my feet across the hot timbers of the boardwalk, sweating, on my way to work. I hated that job, absolutely hated it. The tourists were rude; the bosses were abusive, the air conditioning nonexistent.

I forgot about all that while passing The Hot Sun, an outdoor bar. It was lined with a row of women that made me stop and bite my knuckle. They all faced the bar, ignoring everyone. I had never seen such a row of callipyian women. The thongs they wore vanished between the sweet cheeks they possessed.