We understand if there’s a little wariness at the moment with regards to fandom events but we would urge people not to let one bad incident turn you off from continuing to sign up for events. Just please be aware and look into things carefully and critically before signing up/committing to something. Ask yourself if there’s a system of checks and balances and accountability built into the structure of the project, in order to hopefully prevent abuses of power and trust, especially when money is involved. Take what happened in the OW fandom as a cautionary tale, but don’t let that turn you off from all events because there are so many excellent ones out there!
When considering a new event, look out for the following:
Are the event mods clearly listed and easily found?
Is there more than one mod, especially on projects where money is involved? (there should never be only one person with access to the project’s funds)
Do the mods have experience running fandom events?
Are they clear and upfront in their communications to participants and the general public, including explaining what will happen to any money collected when applicable?
Do they handle themselves and their event in a professional and equitable manner, including in their participant selection process?
This isn’t to say that events that don’t fulfil one or more of these criteria are automatically not to be trusted, far from it. But the fact of the matter is that it’s a lot harder to build trust and accountability if the mod(s) are anonymous or if there’s a single person wielding all the power and responsibility for the event
And to organizers: we’re not trying to target or call anyone out, we’re trying to ensure trust and mitigate the chances of abuse. Please understand that if someone is asking you to be more transparent or show receipts or clarify something it’s not coming from a mean place, it’s simply an unfortunate result of the abuses we’ve seen happen in the past
If you are married and signing up for utilities, make sure both names are put on the account.
I recently had a wonderful woman come in to my office, broken, defeated…
Her husband had left the family supposedly on a short trip to help his family, but failed to return. He had recently stopped sending money home. Her electric bill was quite behind and disconnection notices were sent. The company was working with her, but with minor children and a minimum wage job, she still could not come up with the amount they needed.
The trustee’s office refused to offer aid as the bill was only in her husband’s name. The local charities could only offer a third due to the name issue as well. It took a full afternoon for me to coordinate with her church, and two charities to get it covered. But we still only could cover the amount to avoid disconnection.
Please pray for Ms Linda, for her husband, and the children.
I’m starting my third year in 2 days and I was thinking about everything I’ve learned in those long 2 years and thought why not share some of it with you guys. Everyone’s experience is different and mine may not cover every aspect of college life, but here are some things that I’ve learned from my uni days so far.
1. College is not like high school
You must be like ‘well duh obviously it’s not’ but listen: you get much more freedom when it comes to your studies. And with that freedom comes more responsibility. You’re on your own here, you study for you and you’ll often study alone outside of class so time management is very important. There are no teachers who will go over the material again and again, you either get it or you don’t . But don’t worry,most professors are always willing to help you out if you don’t understand something.
2. Studying is beneficial for your future but sometimes so is going out
Every once in a while it’s good to take a break and hang out with your groupmates. You will get to know each other better in a more chill and relaxed atmosphere. Also, if you ever get exchange students, hang out with them as well. Believe me, you’ll learn so many interesting things about their culture and the background they come from and it’s always good to broaden your knowledge in those areas.
3. Don’t drink with people you don’t trust
((that is of course if you’re old enough to drink:)) There are some genuinely nice people out there who will hold your hair while you’re throwing up, pay for the cab and make sure you get home safe (or walk you to your dorm room), but there are also those who will not hesitate to take advantage of you, so please be careful about who you’re drinking with (it’s always good to have a trusting friend who you know will take care of you in case you take too many shots).
4. That being said, if you see someone who’s had too much to drink and doesn’t seem to have anyone they know wherever it is that you’re drinking at, take care of them
This is pretty self explanatory, and I know you may think it’s not your duty to take care of this person (especially if it’s someone you’ve never met before) but please don’t just leave them at the party/club/whaever, you will not forgive yourself if anything happens to them.
5. Hangover is a bitch
I’m realizing now that three out of five tips so far have been about drinking but oh well. If you have never (or you think you have never) had a hangover in high school, welcome to college. Keep sipping on that water cause it’s going to be a long, long day.
6. Never take a class you’re not interested in just because your friend is taking it
This one can be tricky if you (like me) suffer from anxiety. But if there’s a class you really want to take that none of your friends are interested in, do it! The best course I’ve taken in uni so far was the one my friends didn’t even consider and it was an amazing one. Yet at the end of last year, when I was signing up for classes for the first semester of year three, I decided to take a course I didn’t like just because my uni best friend had signed up for it, and now said friend is dropping out and I will be stuck with the course I couldn’t care less about for an entire semester, so that’s a cautionary tale right there.
7. Participate in optional work
If you have any debates, film/book discussion and things of that nature, take part in them. It’s yet another chance to meet new people, and you often get extra credit for them which is never a bad thing (that’s how I aced one of my classes in year one)
8. All-nighters aren’t cool
They’re not healthy and often do more damage than good. Only pull one if you absolutely need it (e.g if it’s already past midnight, the deadline is in 9 hours and you haven’t even started writing that 15 page essay)
9. Don’t start working unless you really need the money
Combining study and a full-time or even a part-time job is extremely hard. Think about it this way: there’s sleeping, studying and working; you can only have two. You will be either working and sleeping, studying and sleeping or studying and working, none of those options are good for you and your mental and physical health. And hey, once you graduate you’ll have to get a job either way, so if your parents are still willing to support you or you have another way of supporting yourself financially, it’s best to just not rush it and focus on getting that diploma instead.
10. Dropping out isn’t the end of the world
If at some point you decide to drop out, give yourself some time to think it through; a week, a month, a semester. College is not for everyone, and there are different life situations and if you end up dropping out, know that you are NOT a failure. Several of my friends dropped out over these two years and they’re living their best lives right now. You’re going to figure it out and you’re going to be okay, I’m rooting for you lil bean.
And some additional tips:
- Have a bottle of water on you at all times. Hydration is the key, remember?
- Libraries and reading rooms are the best. They’re pretty, quiet and often have wifi. Just don’t skip classes too often there.
- Don’t compare your success with others’.
- Sometimes eating dried tea leaves during a lecture is the best way to connect with people. Please don’t ask me why I know this.
Hope you guys found this helpful and hope you all are having a great beginning of your school year!
The first among them was Davenport, also called “the Captain” – God of Hope and Leadership, patron of sailors and explorers, whose domain was illusions. Temples to Davenport sprung up first at crossroads and ports, places of rest between destinations, the priesthood providing shelter and supplies to travelers. Maps were particularly sacred items to followers of Davenport; his holy sigil was a ship’s compass. Small shrines to him became common in inns across the world, allowing for those passing through to pray for fair weather, strong winds, and good fortune at sea. His favor was often gifted to those in trouble, desperate prayers called out in stormy seas or harsh blizzards; travelers would often describe the sudden appearance of a short man with a torch in the distance, his voice and features impossible to discern, but whose light led them to safety.
The second was Lucretia, also called “the Journal-Keeper” – God of Protection and Family, patron of historians and martyrs, whose domain was abjuration. Her temples were stark, domed buildings, and they rose first in major cities and population centers, then in crisis areas and conflict zones. Her priesthood, clad in blue and white, were dedicated to the protection of life from suffering, and took many responsibilities upon themselves: first responders to disasters, coordinators of long-term relief efforts, chroniclers of history, and absolvers of sin and sadness. Relieving another of their burdens, physical or emotional, was considered a holy sacrament for her followers. Martyrs were revered, particularly those who lived despite the burdens they bore, but Lucretia’s favor was specific – her divine grace granted only to those who sacrificed of themselves for the sake of others without thought of reward. Her holy sigil was a silver bracer, worn on the dominant hand, bearing four triangles.
The third was Magnus, also called “the Rough One” – God of Strength and Courage, patron of warriors and craftsmen, whose domain was martial. His temples (sturdy but humble structures, more of wood than stone) rose first in the Roost of Ravens, and spread quickly up and down the coast. Magnus often answered prayers, but he was not one for displays of power. He granted grace to the weak, rather than the strong, and to the fearful rather than the courageous – his power gifted where it would do the most good. “Blessed by Magnus” became a common turn of phrase, its meaning dependent on the region: unlucky, admired, or merely overly earnest. His priesthood were well-trained in carpentry, considered his most holy trade, but contained craftsmen and women of all kinds. They rarely traveled, content to serve their local communities. They blessed new families, built public works, and railed against injustice and corruption – rebellion, it was often said, was Magnus’ unspoken domain. His holy sigil was a ring, worn on the finger or on a chain around the neck, bearing etchings of a hammer, a shield, and a dog.
The fourth was Merle, also called “the Peacemaker” – God of Compassion and Revelry, patron of skeptics and healers, whose domain was nature. Shrines to Merle existed in nearly every tavern, encouraging offerings in exchange for “Party Points;” blessings which protected one’s lucidity and decision-making, and lessened hangovers. His temples were often mistaken for taverns themselves, though many were often built with courtyards or atriums open to the sea air – beaches were a favorite place for his followers to congregate. Priests of Merle were selected very carefully as vessels for his grace; those who held grudges, or who were selective in their mercy, would never find themselves wearing his garb. Forgiveness was a core part of their doctrine. Those who were wronged were expected to forgive, and those who did the wronging were expected to accept responsibility for their actions and make recompense as best they could. His clerics often served as mediators for disagreements, and his temples functioned as hospitals and dispensaries as much as public houses. His holy sigil was a book with a wood-block cover bearing the image of an owl perched atop a bottle.
The fifth was Taako, also called “the Wizard” – God of Mischief and Magic, patron of chefs and lost children, whose domain was transmutation. Any commercial kitchen worth its salt had a small shrine to Taako somewhere inside; it was considered good luck to pray to him before a busy night. But those who engaged in transmutational cooking prayed to him most fervently; one of Taako’s most common favors was protection from poison. His temples were large and ostentatious, the interiors draped in silks and tapestries and filled with the smell of food. His priests were caterers and caregivers, devoted to the study and craft of both magic and cooking. They provided food to the community; free for the poor and the hungry, at a price for the rich and well-to-do. They took on Taako’s penchant for trickery as well – pranks and jokes were prized among his followers, as well as personal beauty. The truth of his heart, though, was in their most holy sacrament: the protection of orphans. No child was turned away from a house of Taako. His temples became orphanages wherever they arose. Special emphasis was placed on the young and unwanted, who were fed and sheltered and taught his trades for as long as they wished to stay. His holy sigil was a pendant, bearing on one side the image of an umbrella and on the other a wide-brimmed hat – his priesthood’s signature vestment.
The sixth was Lup, also called “the Resplendent” – God of Fire and Empathy, patron of arcanists and adventurers, whose domain was evocation. Shrines to Lup were made with candles or braziers, and her temples (never far from a house of Taako) always contained perpetual bonfires. Offerings to her were always burned, the more extravagant the better – towns would often use the demolition of a condemned building as an opportunity to ask for her favor. But Lup wasn’t easy to please, and certain things were required to be granted her boon; a sense of humor, a willingness for excess, a rejection of cynicism, and a total dedication to friends and family. Moreso even than Magnus, Lup demanded moral certainty – certain lines could not be crossed, under any circumstances. (Though one of the key texts of her priesthood tells the tale of how Lup herself had nearly broken her own vow, once; it was a cautionary tale, meant to impress the dangers of desperation and so-called “hard decisions.”) Priests of Lup were not mediators like those of Merle, or devoted to protection like those of Lucretia, but hers were finely tuned to the understanding of others; they may stand against something while empathizing with its creation. Her holy sigil was a torch, ever-burning with a cold, smokeless flame.
The last wasBarold, also called “the Lover” – God of Love and Devotion, patron of scientists and the curious, whose domain was necromancy. Temples to Barold (colloquially called “Halls of Winter”) were always near to houses of Lup, connected as they were through an unbreakable bond. His priests, clad in red robes and denim trousers, would bless weddings, perform last rites, and engage in what was termed “bright necromancy” – allowing the living to speak with the departed, or usher unwilling souls to their final resting place, or bless their remains to prevent any future meddling from less savory magic. Curiosity was encouraged, but to be engaged with responsibly: necromantic magic of all kinds was not a toy, or a means to power, but a tool to be used for the good of others, and with the consent of the dead.
His doctrine stressed connection and dedication to another as sacred, “anchors” from which divine grace flowed into all things.
Barold’s favor was granted not to those who devoted themselves to knowledge, but to people, wholly and entirely – as with Magnus, “blessed by Barold” became a common phrase, referring to those who were head-over-heels in love. Barold’s holy sigil was a coin; one side bearing his profile, the other bearing his beloved Lup’s.
There were seven divines upon the world, though they walked upon it no more.
I got an S grade on all of Joseph’s dates and got his gallery picture after the credits, which means I got his good ending……it’s the same ending.
There is no ending where you can end up in a happy relationship with Joseph where he leaves his wife and is committed to you. It doesn’t happen.
Details that people are ignoring or missing about Joseph’s route:
There are two opportunities to meet up with Mary at the bar when it’s raining (it’s think this might be a glitch but either way you get different outcomes/dialogue each time it’s triggered)
The first of the scenes is triggered if you go on 2 dates with Robert and possibly 2 dates with Damien but I’m not certain on that last detail, it may not need to be him, or either of them. Either way if you just straight up gun for Joseph you don’t see this.
In this first version of the scene it is revealed that Mary has never gone home with any of the men she propositions. It is also heavily implied that she is afraid to go home.
If you continue to pursue Joseph you are warned AT LEAST of three times that it won’t end the way you want to.
1) In the repeated scene with Mary, if you’re not condescending to her and apologise to her, she says she’s ‘sorry, for us both’ implying that you are both being played by Joseph.
2) Before you go on your third date with Joseph, your daughter warns you about your actions.
3) if you have been on two dates with Robert, he warns you that Joseph is bad news. Some extra context to his warning comes later when Joseph confesses he slept with Robert, but claims it was only once. It’s implied that Joseph is lying about this through details from Robert and a photo on the yacht.
Final point but some people really need to hear this -
Mary is confirmed in the story to have never actually cheated on Joseph. Joseph is confirmed to have cheated on Mary. She isn’t the horrible cheating wife people seem so eager to paint her as (honestly that just comes across as very misogynistic). He is the unfaithful, abusive, manipulative one within the marriage. He treats you exactly the same way it’s implied he’s treated Robert in the past and if you play the game attentively enough this is not only obvious, but it is flagged for you several times over.
To summarise, Joseph’s whole narrative is pretty much a cautionary tale about pursuing the married, closeted man and thinking that you’ll be the one to change/free him, it don’t work like that.
Also, if you think the game is “homophobic” because of this narrative…there are 6 other gay, bi, and trans dads for you to dadmance sooooooo….. (also nothing’s stopping you getting ploughed by Joseph on his sweet yacht if that’s what you’re into)
What's been the most infuriating project you've worked on?
Specifically, Full Throttle Paine from Final Fantasy X-2, which is probably our most ambitious and technically complex costume to date. It was 14 feet wide and incorporated a variety of special effects including motorized elements and puppetry.
You’ll also notice we never talk about it (except as a cautionary tale) or post photos of it.
There’s a backstory, of course (and a moral): Back in 2010, we wanted to do a Slayers cosplay group, but didn’t have enough people for the full main cast. Our friend Mogchelle wanted to do a Final Fantasy X-2 group, but had only herself. So we struck a deal: She’d be the extra person for our Slayers group, and Laura and I would join her group of Paines. Neither Laura nor I had played FFX-2, but the costumes looked interesting enough, so we figured it would be a fun project. (Learn from our mistakes, kids.)
Laura, naturally, chose the single most ridiculous dress sphere, this absurd floating mecha thing:
Knowing she’d need a handler (and that Michelle, in a spiky suit of armor, would as well), I chose the simpler Gunner costume.
My Gunner actually turned out quite well. Mog’s Dark Knight had some practical difficulties, but came out nicely overall. Those costumes scored us the Yume Cup Regionals and sent us to New York City for the Nationals, so at least some good came out of the project as a whole.
Full Throttle, on the other hand… heh.
To begin with, Laura had some great ideas for the mecha. We scaled down the frame to fit a normal human body, built a frame out of wooden poles and steel rings, sanded down and painted some massive acrylic hemispheres for the end caps, vacuformed a few dozen plastic blades, built a stilt support system out of a tripod, wired in a low-RPM, high torque motor that rotated a set of blades on a pole above her head, built “floating” leg blades that hovered above the ground while Laura stood in 8″ clear platform heels so she’d appear to levitate, and – most impressive – had a FUNCTIONAL finger puppetry system built on pulleys and fishing line so that when Laura flexed her fingers inside the cylinders of the mecha, the hinged blades on the outside would actually bend and fold to mimic the action.
Progress on the vacuformed blade pieces. This is only half of them:
…All of which was quite ingenious, in theory – but none of the construction went as planned. Even nature was against us: We’d take something outside on a nice day to paint, leave it sitting in the sun to dry, and we’d come back an hour later and the entire piece would have blown away into a cornfield half a mile away (and be unusable). We’d take the puppetry system outdoors where there was space to test the mechanism, and a freak thunderstorm would suddenly appear and tear the whole thing apart. We’d test a material, have it work fine, and then make the actual piece, and the material would do something completely different and not work at all.
Normally, when there are setbacks, you shake it off and keep working toward the end goal, and your passion for the project carries you through – but that didn’t happen with this one, because we didn’t care about these costumes AT ALL. We didn’t even like them. We’d only agreed to make them because of our deal with Michelle, and there were sooooo many times we just wanted to set fire to the whole thing and call it quits. (This is the moral: Never agree to make a costume you’re not personally invested in, because when things go wrong, you won’t have the motivation to finish, and you will hate it by the end.)
But we’d promised to make the costume, so we persevered. We modified the design. We rebuilt. We made things WORK, darn it! And eventually, after endless trial and error and aggravation, we were successful.
…And then came the little matter of transporting it to the con.
This is pretty long already, so I won’t go into excruciating detail about everything that happened, but basically, everything that could possibly go wrong at that con did, UP TO AND INCLUDING THE HOTEL CATCHING FIRE. (I am not even kidding.) The support frame broke; the puppetry got snarled internally and had to be rewired on the fly; blades were bent; pieces got ripped off; the overhead blades got snagged on things… Worse yet, AFTER all of that, once we had it cobbled back together backstage at the masquerade with a bunch of zip ties and duct tape, one of the stagehands tried to “help” Laura up the ramp onto the stage by shoving her really hard, which not only nearly broke her leg (remember, she was balancing in 8″ platforms carrying about 40 lbs. of weight at the ends of her arms), but got her tangled in the railing so badly that the stage manager had to pull out a knife and cut her out of out of part of the costume just so she could get on stage…
That was ACEN. We tried to rebuild it for Gen Con, where even more things went wrong– well, maybe not more; no hotels caught fire at Gen Con. But more pieces of the costume were damaged in transit or broke backstage, so the complete costume didn’t make it onstage there, either. We ended up with… I don’t know, maybe 70% of the costume making it up the ramp this time? (The puppetry was destroyed in a backstage traffic accident while we were trying to load in, so the blades are all sad and droopy here.)
We managed to salvage just enough of the costume to get through our skit, but we all realized that Full Throttle Paine was never destined to make it through a masquerade. And by that point, we really, really didn’t care any more.
So afterwards we went backstage to the green room, called all the other cosplayers to bring over their weapons and props, and we had a Paine-smashing party:
The best part was, the next year at Gen Con, another cosplayer came up to us and showed us his costume – some sort of scale-mail fantasy thing. “Do you recognize it?” he asked?
We didn’t, and he pointed at the scales. “It’s your costume from last year,” he said proudly. He’d scavenged pieces of Paine’s blades from what was left after our costume-smashing fun, and had recycled the materials into his costume!
Although submitted anonymously, I’ve received information that “Cautionary Poly: Delilah” appears to have been written by, or on behalf of, a known abuser. An abuser who has been denied entry into Poly Role Models on multiple occasions. Possibly as part of a gaslighting campaign, this cautionary tale employed a mix of lies and distortion to recast the roles of accused and accuser. Many of the story’s features have been noticed by those with a close enough reference point to be able to identify the details and the perspective.
As a result, the posting of the story has had the affect of re-traumatizing the survivors. Point blank, Poly Role Models is not about that shit! This blog is meant to be a platform to better understand and more accurately represent the entirety of polyamory. Even Cautionary Poly is meant as a learning tool for those who need help navigating this imperfect journey. It is not a place to carry vendettas into the public.
As such, I’ve removed the post and sincerely apologize to any who may have been harmed by it’s publishing.
Written in 1935, but still completely relevant: ‘A vain, outlandish, anti-immigrant, fearmongering demagogue runs for President of the United States - and wins. [He] promises poor, angry voters that he will make America proud and prosperous once more, but takes the country down a far darker path. This cautionary tale of liberal complacency in the face of populist tyranny shows it really can happen here.’