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UFC San Antonio Betting Preview (& UFC 286 Review)

2023.03.21 18:05 sideswipe781 UFC San Antonio Betting Preview (& UFC 286 Review)

Bet record: 17-31, Staked: 53.75u, Profit/Loss: +4.96u, ROI: 9.24%, Parlay Suggestions: 21-6
If you’re not bothered about my ramblings on last week’s opinions, scroll down for UFC San Antonio Breakdowns
(For context, my UFC 286 Preview for that event can be found here:

UFC 286
Bets: 4-3, +5.74u, Parlay Suggestions: 3-1
✅ 3u Gunnar Nelson & Marvin Vettori both to Win (-115)
✅ 2u Jack Shore & Impa Kasangany to Win (-180)
✅ 1u Jack Shore to Win in Round 2 or 3 (+241)
❌ 1.5u Omar Morales to Win (-110)
✅ 1u Leon Edwards to Win (+250)
❌ 1u Juliana Miller & Omran Chaaban to Win (-125)
❌ 0.25u Marvin Vettori, Gunnar Nelson, Jack Shore & Juliana Miller all to Win (+205)
As I said in my initial comments about UFC 286, I think it really under delivered from a fan perspective because of the lack of high level UK prospects. Without a Molly McCann, Darren Till, Paddy Pimblett or a Tom Aspinall, the fans just weren’t as excited or vocal throughout the card.
With that said, I’m always having fun if I’m making money! This was my third winning event in a row, a streak of over 10u profit in March. It was obviously a card of strong favourites but I’m mostly happy with the spots I chose to pull the trigger on. The Nelson/Vettori parlay was nice as both men delivered exactly what I expected them to, and Jack Shore also came through to cash a bigger priced prop bet. It’s really satisfying when your reads on fights turn out to be spot on, and your bets cash with relative ease as a result. Here's some live thoughts on the card + my breakdowns:
- So proud of Leon Edwards man, that was one hell of a performance. The way he levelled up that takedown defence and made his shots count in the clinch. It was one of those complicated fights to score in that he was moving backwards and fighting defensively for the most part, but he certainly landed more shots and had the better moments. Really happy to have gotten 2/1 and 3/1 (boosted) on the dog there.
- Jesus Christ Rafael Fiziev is quick. The combinations he was throwing in the first minute of round three were some of the most terrifying spurts of offence I’ve seen in some time. And then just a minute or so later Justin Gaethje starts winging massive uppercuts and cannot miss with them. That was such a good fight, real back and forth stuff. I feel like Gaethje was lowkey a really good underdog spot all week but it’s hard to give those opinions credence sometimes when the masses are all hyping up Fiziev. At least I identified Fiziev was not a good bet.
- Massive shoutout to Gunnar Nelson for performing exactly like a -400 should, as I expected him to! He got in, landed a takedown, and found the sub soon after. I still wish he would have done that against Takashi Sato, bur he rounded out the parlay with Vettori and made it a winning night for me! Along with Hadley, he was the best parlay option on the card (as I suggested).
- Casey O’Neill didn’t shoot for a takedown. Not the fight anyone was expecting. It’s disappointing when that happens but there’s not really a whole lot you can do. Jennifer Maia is a really underrated striker so god knows why Casey chose that path. When you consider the way Jake Hadley approached his fight and compare it with O’Neill…that’s the difference between good fight IQ and bad. I actually said in my analysis “I trust O’Neill’s dedication to her gameplan here” which is hilarious. Don’t think I can be blamed for not seeing it coming though haha.
- All week I was a little bit confused by all the love for Roman Dolidze, as I got on Marvin Vettori pretty early and didn’t really see a whole lot of reasoning that I understood. To be perfectly honest, Dolidze had more success than I expected him to, and any fighter other than Vettori would probably have wilted and got stopped. With that said, that’s exactly why I bet Marvin, so I don’t necessarily think it was a bad read at all. A solid parlay leg.
- Jack Shore vs Makwan Amirkhani played out exactly as I expected it to. Amirkhani’s a good grappler, so I wasn’t surprised nor worried when he clearly won round 1. In fact, I was more confident in winning my bets as soon as the horn sounded, and it showed. I don’t really understand how a professional fighter can have such a glaring cardio issue and not address it or adjust his style. I hope they keep Makwan around, those Round 2/3 props will always be good. Happy to finally win one of those bigger priced prop bets. I’ve historically been pretty good with props but somehow been on a dry patch since I started posting here.
- Chris Duncan v Morales was a frustrating one. Morales will look back on that one and be pissed off at himself, because he should absolutely be winning that. Chris Duncan really isn’t very good and I am already looking forward to fading him in the future. Hope they try and build him up because there’ll be a good fade waiting to happen. Annoying fight to lose but fair play to Duncan for identifying the path to victory. Glad I went with a smaller stake for a volatile fight.
- A shame what happened to Dusko Todorovic. Christian Leroy Duncan is a really exciting striker so I was looking forward to seeing more of him, but you never want to see that happen. I hope we don’t have to wait until the next England card for C L Duncan’s next fight, but I also hope they give him a bit of a lay-up for to allow for a proper “debut”.
- Nicely done from Jake Hadley, making use of his striking advantage and not getting sucked into a grappling affair. Always annoys me when someone has a distinct advantage but doesn’t use it because it’s not their plan A. He was the best parlay piece of the card. Good for Hadley and I’m excited to see what else he has to offer. Wish I’d gone with him instead of backing Juliana Miller.
- I was keeping half an eye on Herbert/Klein and Wood/Carolina whilst at work. Doesn’t look like I missed a whole lot and haven't bothered to rewatch.
- Juliana Miller with an awful performance. Veronica Macedo looked much improved but it didn’t take a whole lot to defeat an opponent with no plan B. I didn’t anticipate Macedo being the stronger fighter of the two, which changed a whole lot. Poor decision from me to back an inexperienced fighter at -400 like that. Grim. Inexperience really showed.

UFC San Antonio
I'm really excited for the main event of this one, very glad they put this fight together. Unfortunately the headliner is a massive cut above the rest of the card in terms of popularity and calibre, but we’ve had worse cards this year, I don’t mind it. Usually I’d rejoice over the fact we aren’t in the Apex…but we are in Texas, where judging has been historically AWFUL. There isn’t a whole lot we can really do with that information though, except consider how much of a fighter’s win probability is based around them finding a finish. Fighters who are likely to win without the judges getting involved will be the less volatile spots this week.
From a betting perspective, it’s a very weak card. The bookies have done a really good job of pricing the punters out of any value, as my conclusions to most fights see me lining it pretty close to the books, where there ends up being no real numerical edge on either side! Nonetheless, I’ve broken down most of the bouts on the card below:

Cory Sandhagen v Marlon Vera
Marlon Vera has always been one of my favourite fighters. Backing him to win inside the distance when he was a prelim fighter was a spot I always looked out for back in the day, so it’s great to see him climb so high in the rankings. I always support and ride with the fighters that make me money over the years, and Vera has been one of the best of them.
Unfortunately, Vera’s always relied on his power and finishing ability to really carry him through fights, as there are a lot of instances where he’s down on the overall scorecards, before finding a finish. His wins over Dominic Cruz and Frankie Edgar are the two best examples recently, but his issue of being a slow starter also made this applicable in wins over Davey Grant, Nohelin Hernandez and Guido Cannetti. Also similarly, he was being thoroughly outboxed by Rob Font in their main event encounter last year, but the Ecuadorian was stealing rounds with knockdowns in a very similar way.
Considering I expect this fight against Cory Sandhagen to be a closely contested one, Vera’s inability to win minutes and start strong could end up becoming a problem here. The pivotal question in this fight is whether or not Vera can hurt or finish Sandhagen, as I certainly lean towards favouring Cory if this fight goes the distance and Vera hasn’t scored multiple knockdowns.
Vera is one of the most dangerous guys P4P on the roster, with KO and Submission potential across all five rounds – but Sandhagen has been pretty damn durable in his MMA career. Aljamain Sterling was the only man of 19 able to finish Cory, and it came in under 90 seconds. Sandhagen’s performance there was such a disappointment that I’m convinced there was something else going on that hindered him that night. Petr Yan also dropped Sandhagen with a spinning back fist combo, but that seemed very much like Cory getting caught unaware – and he looked like he recover instantly.
Given the calibre that Sandhagen has fought against in the last four years – I think we have to give him the benefit of the doubt in assuming he can stay safe here. If that is the case I expect him to win rounds with superior output and a faster pace – especially considering he’s got a high likelihood of being one round up after five minutes.
I’m not super confident in that take though as it’s hardly on the level of Garbrandt vs Jones or something! So it’s a fight I’m definitely lining as quite close. Sandhagen deserves to be deemed the favourite for the above reasons, but I wouldn’t be too surprised if Vera’s dangerousness was enough to tip the balance in his favour, or if he was able to win a round by just point striking anyway.
I saw a stat this week that said there have been 10 rounds in 2023 where a knockdown is landed but the round still ended and was scored. Of those scorecards, the fighter landing the knockdown won 8 of 10 times. Whilst it’s highly implied that a knockdown means you’re more likely to win the round based off how the following minutes take place, that does still imply the judges are leaning towards awarding damage over minute winning (I personally hate the way MMA judging has gone these days but it is what it is). Just something to consider when you think about Chito’s path to victory.
At the end of the day, it’s an intriguing fight, and not one I think anyone should be rushing to the betting window for due to the small margins in the various skill discrepancies.
How I line this fight: Cory Sandhagen -150 (60%), Marlon Vera +150 (40%)
Bet or Pass: Pass

Holly Holm v Yana Santos
Holly Holm is one of those fighters who makes your memory play tricks on you. I instinctively feel like I have a good read on her style and overall calibre, but then when I watch tape she’s always a much more underwhelming version of that fighter I have in my head. She just doesn’t really put her stamp on rounds – spending too much time in the clinch and does not have high enough volume. 3.24 significant strikes landed per 15 minutes is a shockingly low number, especially considering it’s Women’s MMA and Holm has a lot of in cage time. To make matters worse, Holm averages 0.72 takedowns per 15 minutes and is now 41 years old.
Whilst there’s a lot of data to crunch on Holm, there’s actually a surprisingly smaller sample size on Yana Santos. Considering Kunitskaya (previous surname) has been a known name in Women’s MMA for some time, it’s pretty crazy to think she only has 7 UFC appearances to her name – most of which are against a lesser calibre than Holly Holm. She’s also coming off a two year lay-off having had a child with Thiago Santos, which adds further uncertainty to an already tepid read.
As I’m sure you may have noticed by now, this breakdown is much more stat-based than I typically offer (though Women’s MMA is a lot more accessible for stats), because I honestly cannot bring myself to re-watch Holly Holm’s career and I’m instead relying on what the numbers are telling me. Perhaps that’s a bit lazy, but this is the 8th week of UFC cards in a row and I am feeling very burnt out! I just don’t think either woman has a particularly commanding style, and there’s a hell of a lot of intangibles floating around this fight (old age, post-child birth, lay-offs, levels of competition, Texas judging etc), so it’s a very easy pass.
How I line this fight: I won’t line a fight I haven’t taped, but I do not recommend Holm at this price.
Bet or Pass: Pass

Nate Landwehr v Austin Lingo
It’s a shame Alex Caceres had to pull out of the originally scheduled bout against Nate Landwehr, but good to see they managed to find Austin Lingo a fight so soon after the Ricardo Ramos one fell through a couple of weeks ago (still annoyed I didn’t get to cash some easy money there). From a fan perspective, this bout is probably the most entertaining of the three available!
Both dudes are hardnosed strikers that like to fight gritty and wear out their opponents. Neither are particularly gifted from a technique perspective, but you’d be hard pressed to find fighters that can out work these two. Pitting them against one another is going to lead to an exhausting fight.
Landwehr is the much more experienced of the two and has clearly had more career success implementing the brawling style, but I think this is just one of those matchups that’s going to be fought quite closely, given how it should play out. Landwehr relies on sheer busyness and drowning his opponents to win rounds but, if he can’t necessarily do that to Lingo, do you really have a whole lot of confidence that he’s going to be the clear round winner? The guy gets hit by 5.56 significant strikes per minute. Considering we are in Texas and there is added volatility to the judging, any fighter that can land 5.56 S.Strikes is live to win a round or two!
Landwehr’s key to winning this fight is going to be in his wrestling, as that’s where he will clearly assert himself. But can he even get it there though? Lingo’s debut performance against Youseff Zalal was a big red flag in terms of his takedown defence, but he looks to have improved it in his following two bouts. However, those came against a lower level of competition so could well be flattering Lingo’s overall ability. His takedown defence stats are quite skewed, and he’s coming off an 18 month layoff which muddies the water even more.
I think the edge in experience and overall competence at the hard-nosed styles means that Landwehr deserves to be favoured here, but I think the pricetag is a bit ridiculous. He should get the win, but I would be very surprised if he does it with the dominance of a -275. The lay off for Lingo means that he can have anywhere from a very low floor to a reasonably high ceiling. Both men are durable and will have moments in this fight, so this is one of the fights where I’m expecting some wild shit from Texas judges. If you’re convinced about betting Landwehr at -300 here, you’re crazy. Lingo the value side, but mostly based off intangibles and hypotheticals, which doesn’t fill me with enough confidence to pull the trigger.
How I line this fight: Nate Landwehr -200 (67%), Austin Lingo +200 (34%)
Bet or Pass: Pass

Andrea Lee v Maycee Barber
This one should be pretty fun! It’s speed and agility vs power and force.
Andrea Lee is a complicated fighter to get a full read on, as her performances have really varied throughout her career. She’s well rounded enough to outstrike most equally levelled opponents on the feet, and her grappling isn’t too bad either. Takedown defence needs a bit of work though.
The biggest issue with Lee is those back-to-back losses to Lauren Murphy and Roxanne Modafferi. It’s just inexcusable to lose both of those of those fights when you’re the calibre that Andrea Lee is. I know you can argue she got robbed against Murphy (it’s probably the key example of Texas judging being so bad), but she let the fight become quite close. And yes, Barber lost to Modafferi, but that was all determined by an injury and anyone who tells you otherwise is a hater or hasn’t watched it.
I’ve always thought Barber was overrated in terms of skills, but her physicality and strength are a bit of a gamechanger in the Women’s divisions. She’s well-rounded, but statistically has lesser output than Andrea Lee…which is always concerning. I expect this one to be quite competitive, where Andrea Lee could easily stay safe on the outside and jab her way to a win, as long as she gets on her bike and utilises good footwork. Maycee will plod forward and look to land the power shot, but that’s not a particularly high percentage outcome to rely on in Women’s MMA. If she can get her hands on her and utilise the clinch, I think it’s all one way traffic from there though. Maycee is reliable to do that, at least.
I can understand Barber being the favourite based off the finishing upside, imposing striking with good metrics and ability to land takedowns…but I’m just still not wholly convinced by her ability as a mixed martial artist outside of the way she implements brute force. It might be enough here, but I just don’t like her at this short of a price. Lee has a clear path to victory that, whilst I’m not convinced she can execute it, should be taken seriously.
How I line this fight: Andrea Lee +163 (38%), Maycee Barber -163 (62%)
Bet or Pass: Pass

Alex Perez v Manel Kape
It’s just impossible to know what we’re getting from Alex Perez at this stage, isn’t it? I like Manel Kape and rate him relatively highly, but I have always maintained that Perez on his best day could well be a champion at Flyweight. I bet him in most of his fights in the buildup to the title bout against Figgy – and I bet him there as well. Unfortunately Figgy was still in his explosive prime so it didn’t work out, but I expected Perez to become somewhat of a title eliminator gatekeeper from then on. Since that loss two and a half years ago his career has taken a peculiar turn – eight fight cancellations and a 91 second loss to Alexandre Pantoja.
There are just so many question marks surrounding Alex Perez at the moment, and that makes it impossible to know what to expect in this fight. If he was at his best, I’d consider him a slight favourite here, but who knows. Kape’s weakness is clearly defensive wrestling, and he can sometimes be low volume enough on the feet that he makes fights closer than they need to be. Perez has a good enough style to make that work and win here…providing we get him at his best.
I didn’t dive into much tape for this one as I knew I wasn’t going to bet it at all. If you think Kape beats Perez based off the footage available then you’re getting a decent price!
How I line this fight: Didn’t tape, won’t line it.
Bet or Pass: Pass

Chidi Njokuani v Albert Duraev
It’s crazy how much Albert Duraev’s stock has fallen, all in one loss to Joaquin Buckley. Before that bout he looked sensational on the Contender Series, and followed it up with a dominant win over Roman Kopylov as a -450 favourite. He absolutely does his best work in the grappling and showed that he doesn’t have much of a plan B if he can’t land takedowns or settle his opponent on their back. I’m also not too convinced by his cardio, and any opponent that will make him work hard to secure top position can weaponise his questionable endurance in the later rounds.
Buckley’s such a physical and stocky guy though, I think he’s naturally going to be a tough opponent to take down when you’ve got a bit more of a wirey frame like Duraev does. Chidi Njokuani isn’t so muscular and stocky, so I think it’s fair to assume that Duraev’s going to be more of a threat with the takedowns than he was against Buckley.
The problem is, Chidi showed some really impressive get ups after the initial takedown and doesn’t usually settle on the bottom whilst he’s fresh. Dusko Todorovic isn’t the best grappler in the world by any stretch, but Chidi was doing all the right things to prevent hit back from lying flat on the mat, and if he has similar success against Duraev he’s cruising.
The finish to the Robocop fight was a bit of a concern, but that fight heated up to a ridiculously fast pace in round 1 that I think Chidi cardio dumped, got rocked, and kind of quit on the bottom against Rodrigues. The same could happen again, but it would rely on Duraev pushing the pace aggressively with his striking, which isn’t something he often does.
Overall, I think Njokuani definitely deserves to be a favourite here as he is much more dangerous on the feet and has shown us already that he can successfully answer the questions that Duraev will ask. The Russian also does not have much of a plan B and doesn’t always do a whole lot with his top control except set up submissions. Considering Njokuani is a BJJ Black Belt, and the judges probably won’t appreciate those kind of optics from Duraev, I’m not massively convinced by his chances here.
I’m interested to see what kind of price they’re giving for Njokuani ITD in this fight, as I’m quite convinced by his finishing ability since he moved up to Middleweight, and Duraev is very hittable if he gets stuck on the feet. If I can get + money on it I think I’d have a small wager.
How I line this fight: Chidi Njokuani -175 (64%), Albert Duraev +175 (36%)
Bet or Pass: 1.5u Chidi Njokuani & CJ Vergara Both to Win (+122)

Steven Peterson v Lucas Alexander
I complain pretty much every week about the UFC’s current fighter calibre having massively declined recently, and nothing proves my point like Steven Peterson finally becoming a betting favourite for the first time in 8 UFC bouts. The guy has been the perfect litmus test to determine whether any fighter is UFC level, and those he has beaten were notoriously bad at the time and didn’t last long at the top level (Chase Hooper excluded because he had some “name value”).
He’s got some similarities to Austin Lingo in that he is some generic white guy with bad tattoos, that doesn’t have any real skill but is gritty and dedicated to the fight. If you can’t put him away, you’re going to have keep your shit together or he might surprise you by sheer output and ruggedness. No fighter that is credited mostly for their ability to take a punch and walk forward deserves to be a -175 favourite, but they also don’t always deserve to be massive underdogs either (see breakdown of Landwehr vs Lingo). The thing that baffles me the most though is that Peterson isn’t much of a finisher (6 of his last 7 went the distance), meaning the books are putting a fair bit of stock into his ability to win a decision.
So…Lucas Alexander. His UFC debut was a quick loss via RNC, but it came off a slip from a kick and the rest was kind of a formality at that point once Brito got the back as a result. Personally I don’t really put much/any stock into that loss as I don’t think it showed us anything about him apart from his defensive grappling isn’t elite? Ask yourself this…if this was Lucas Alexander’s UFC debut, would the line still be the same? It depends on what the regional tape looks like, but I’m quite sure it wouldn’t!
Therefore, we have to go back to the regional scene to actually get a glimpse of Alexander…and there is a lot more to be intrigued by than you might think. He’s a better technical striker than Peterson! He’s got great fluidity and movement, throws a varied arsenal of kicks and combos (lots of leg kicks, which will halt that forward pressure), and switches stances quite often. I’m not too sure how he’ll deal with being crowded by Peterson and his intense style, but I fully expect him to get the better of the majority of the striking exchanges whilst they’re at distance.
To win this fight cleanly, the grappling is the answer for Peterson…but Alexander’s defensive wrestling and get ups aren’t bad at all from what I’ve seen! I’ve seen evidence of him using the cage to get back to his feet and reversing position in the clinch, as well as maintaining position in top control. Apparently he’s a black belt as well, but I try not to immediately assume that makes you a good grappler (he does have 3 submission losses tbf). I did see a few submission attempts and successful reversals from bottom against Jeremias Fernandez, and was impressed with how he handled being on the bottom. The two regional scene submission losses both came in 2018, and honestly he looks like he’s improved his wrestling/grappling a lot since then so I’m not massively concerned by them.
Peterson has averaged just 1.61 TDs landed per 15 minutes, which isn’t a massively high number and doesn’t really fill you with a whole lot of confidence that he’s going to stick to a grappling based gameplan in this fight, especially when we know how much he enjoys brawling. If he does come with that kind of gameplan then I guess I expect him to be favoured (still hard to say how good/bad Alexander’s grappling is), but if he opts to strike I think he’s at a disadvantage.
For me, this fight is clearly a pick’em, or at least leans slightly towards Peterson as the favourite. I do expect Alexander to perform better than his +150 price tag suggests, as I think he’s got the potential to keep out of danger with the grappling and actually outscore Peterson on the feet. This fight probably goes the distance and, given the hesitance I have about Texas judges, I’d much rather be on the + money side there as well. Alexander is still being regarded as a “UFC debut” fighter in my eyes so I won’t be staking much here…but if you’re betting Peterson at -180 I think you’re crazy.
How I line this fight: Steven Peterson -120 (54%), Lucas Alexander +120 (46%)
Bet or Pass: 1u Lucas Alexander to Win (+150 or better…waiting to see if the juice continues)

Trevin Giles v Preston Parsons
Preston Parsons looked really good in his win over Evan Elder last year, with the latter going on to impress everyone with his latest performance against Nazim Sadykhov a few weeks ago. Parsons has a really suffocating wrestling/grappling style, forcing his opponents to work and threatening with a variety of submissions. He can be a little “submission over position” but he’s got an arsenal of really good sweeps from bottom. His striking also looked decent in the loss to Daniel Rodriguez, throwing shots at angles and landing pretty cleanly on D-Rod a few times.
He faces Trevin Giles, who has had a pretty eventful UFC career so far. Giles suffered back to back R3 losses to Zak Cummings and Gerald Meerschaert in fights he was clearly winning, where lapses in concentration saw him snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. He then went on to be the benefactor of one of the worst decisions in MMA history when he beat James Krause by decision. Giles hasn’t really gone on to do a whole lot in his UFC career since, but a well-aged win over Roman Dolidze stands out as the highlight.
Giles has decent striking himself, but he is such a low volume fighter that I think he’s going to struggle to win rounds against Preston ‘Pressure’ Parsons if he doesn’t do damage. The younger fighter will be happy to push the pace in this one, varying up his striking with a few takedown entries and just overwhelming Giles, who likes to fight patiently and methodically on the feet. Giles looks clean when he’s involved in a staring match on the feet, but when the tempo turns up and things get a bit wild he kind of loses all composure and technique (see losses to Morales and Du Plessis recently). Giles is also a decent enough grappler, but he’s prone to reversals on the mat (which Parsons will definitely try to execute), and can accept bottom position if his initial guard sub or two get shut down.
I’m struggling to really see why this one is being lined as a pick’em here, as Giles doesn’t hold a whole lot of advantages that I think he’ll be able to implement. He’s clearly a good striker, but the low volume should prevent him from really being able to show that off properly, and he won’t be the fighter looking to put his stamp on rounds when he’s fighting at a tempo way higher than he wants. He’s more experienced, but we’ve also seen lots of examples of poor fight IQ consistently creeping into Giles’ game and he hasn’t addressed the flaws of his style.
I’d line Parsons as a small to moderate favourite in this fight, and I’ll be betting him for a couple of units as a result.
How I line this fight: Trevin Giles +150 (40%), Preston Parsons -150 (60%)
Bet or Pass: 3u Preston Parsons to Win (+100)

CJ Vergara v Daniel Da Silva
To me, this seems like one of those fights where the UFC are acknowledging Vergara has paid his dues, and are giving him a bit of a softball as a result.
No one really knew what to make of Vergara when he got to the UFC – a KO win on the Contender Series in 41 seconds is usually a red flag more than anything! They lined him up with Ode Osbourne for his debut, where he was a +170 underdog. He put a really impressive display in that fight, with many thinking he actually won against a guy that is quite well respected at Flyweight.
Next, he was a +270 underdog to Kleydson Rodrigues, who was making his debut as a highly, highly touted prospect. Everyone and their mothers was on Rodrigues in that fight, yet Vergara fought a really smart and dedicated gameplan and won a close split decision. I had a big bet on Kleydson in his fight a few weeks ago, and rewatching the Vergara fight had me respecting him all over again. Given what we saw Kleydson do to Shannon Ross (not that the latter is a world beater) did nothing but improve Vergara’s stock.
Then, for his third UFC bout, he gets Tatsuro Taira! Probably one of the top 5 hottest unranked prospects in the sport right now. That was the first time we saw Vergara actually look like the +220 underdog that the books had him as, but given the hype around Taira that’s actually a respectable number to be graded at! There really isn’t a long list of fighters who are willing to fight Taira at the moment, so the matchmakers have probably scheduled this fight as a thank you for Vergara being a company man.
They’ve given him Daniel da Silva (Lacerda) as a reward. DdS is a pretty wild fighter, with 15 bouts all ending inside the distance (and none even reaching round 3). That kind of kill-or-be-killed style is certainly fun to watch, but it doesn’t really work out as well as you’d think when you hit the big shows. Don’t get me wrong, he looks pretty decent in round 1, but Vergara is a durable guy that has shown good IQ in the cage so far. He should find a way to stay safe in that opening round, probably by landing a takedown and coasting in top control like Jeff Molina did (also, shoutout Jeff Molina for handling the social media chaos with grace last week!), or by pushing that ferocious striking pace and keeping da Silva on the backfoot.
Even so, da Silva is a liability to himself in Round 1 as well, as we saw in losses to Francisco Figueiredo and Victor Altamirano. Getting kneebar’d by Figgy’s subpar brother is a pretty bad look, and he had absolutely no answer for Altamirano’s ground striking as soon as he was on his back. His commitment to the guard sub is insane, and it’s probably going to be responsible for yet another loss here against Vergara.
I think we’re getting a decent price on Vergara here. The blueprint has been written on Da Silva and, whilst Vergara will have to be careful for the opening few minutes, I think CJ’s got him covered here. I jumped in on the -275 as a parlay piece, as I think there’s an argument Vergara should probably be a bigger favourite here?
Also, as a side note from watching Molina vs Da Silva – Damn James Krause was a good coach. What a waste!
How I line this fight: CJ Vergara -300 (75%), Daniel Da Silva +300 (25%)
Bet or Pass: 1.5u CJ Vergara & Chidi Njokuani Both to Win (+122)

Vinicius Salvador v Victor Altamirano
I loved Vinicius Salvador’s DWCS performance against Shannon Ross and I’m really excited to see him make his debut, but I’m not massively sure about how good he is as an overall fighter. His style instantly makes him a fan favourite, but using nothing but head movement to defend, and having that cocky style that throws ridiculous highlight reel kicks isn’t really a positive trait when you’re looking to put your hard earned money on a fighter. It looks cool and can sometimes impress the judges…but it’s a risky game and can easily see you getting caught clean or making mistakes. There’s a reason Michel Pereira doesn’t fight like a lunatic anymore.
Salvador hits hard and absolutely has knockout power, having finished 13 of his 14 wins by KO (the other was a submission). He’s also lost inside the distance in three of his 4 losses, and Shannon Ross did have him hurt for a second or two in the DWCS fight. He’s a chaotic fighter, and I’m really annoyed we got robbed of the chance to see him fight Daniel Da Silva a few months ago. It would have been fireworks.
This might sound stupid as a genuine piece of logic and reasoning, but I have always fully believed the notion that Mexican fighters have the best chins and next level toughness. It’s kind of a dumb narrative for me to hang my hat on, but I am always hesitant to side with a knockout-based fighter if it’s a Mexican opponent they’re trying to put to sleep. We saw Altamirano eat a few clean and heavy shots from Daniel Da Silva in his last bout, which makes me think I might have to side with my illogical narrative once again.
With that said, I still think Salvador deserves to be favoured by a small margin here. Victor Altamirano just isn’t very good. His win over DdS was kind of a high variance random knee, and he was clearly losing that fight up to that point. He was competitive in the win against Carlos Hernandez, but I feel like that fight didn’t do much to show off the skills of either guy and it really solidified that they are equally matched as entry level UFC fighters. It was like an intense sparring session, where neither guy had any real sting on their shots and only looked to point score, with a bit of cage pushing thrown in for good measure.
The power discrepancy between Altamirano and Salvador is too big to ignore here. Salvador is going to come out hot and look to take Victor’s head off, and I just don’t think Altamirano is going to be able to earn back the respect of Salvador here. The striking should be one-way traffic whilst they’re fresh, simply because Salvador’s going be doing damage with almost every shot that he lands. As the fight wears on though, I expect Altamirano have a lot more success in the later minutes, as he settles into the fight and has grown confident he can withstand the power (as well as some of the sting coming off Salvador’s shots).
Altamirano doesn’t look like wrestling/grappling is his preferred skillset, but I think he would do well to lean on it a bit here. I haven’t been able to really find any tape on Salvador’s defensive wrestling/grappling, but I have to assume that a fighter with as little technical discipline as him is probably not the greatest grappler in the world.
I see Vinicius Salvador as something similar to the Brazilian equivalent of Trevor Peak. It's easy to get ahead of yourself and try to fade a guy with brute force and no technique, but it’s important to realise that the judges don’t score technique and as long as Salvador is landing something, he’ll earning favour with the judges and threatening to score a finish too.
I don’t think Altamirano is the guy to capitalise on those defensive lapses of Salvador, so I think the Brazilian is the rightful favourite. However, there’s not enough value on the line to justify a bet here, and Salvador could easily be the maker of his own downfall with his reckless style, and that’s not the kind of guy I like to back.
Very excited to see this one play out. I will probably throw Salvador into a couple of my untracked degenerate parlays, but officially it’s a no-bet for me.
How I line this fight: Vinicius Salvador -120 (54%), Victor Altamirano +120 (46%)
Bet or Pass: Pass

Tamires Vidal v Hailey Cowan
The UFC are being very generous to Hailey Cowan, aren’t they!? After trying and failing to set her up with one of the worst fighters on the roster, Ailin Perez, they’re trying again to offer her a bit of a soft entry into the UFC.
The problem is that Cowan is just simply not very good, so I think she’s going to struggle against anyone that’s borderline UFC calibre. Tamires Vidal sits on the fringe, and she seems to be the much more dangerous of the two and actually has some process to her striking, so I think Cowan deserves to be the underdog once again.
The betting line here has been on a real journey already. Books opened Cowan as a +200 underdog, and it looks to have been jumped on by some opportunistic value bettors – and rightly so! I just hope the steam has come in because they think the line was wide, not because they have any real faith in Cowan!
I’m intrigued to see how far the overcorrection goes, as this one really should land around a pick’em. The books won’t mind tipping the balance towards Cowan if it means they’ve got equal money on each side, as this isn’t going to be a high stakes fight so they’ll prioritise keeping the book green.
I have to remind myself of the calibre I’m dealing with here though…both women are low level and high variance is at play! If all the money on Cowan continues to come and Vidal’s price gets bigger, then a true value bettor should pounce on any decent size + money…but you really do have to accept that you’re getting into bed with variance here.
How I line this fight: Tamires Vidal -110 (52%), Hailey Cowan +110 (48%)
Bet or Pass: Pass

Bets (Placed bets in bold, others are pending as line may improve)
3u Preston Parsons to Win (+100)
1.5u CJ Vergara & Chidi Njokuani Both to Win (+122)
0.25u Njokuani, Parsons & Vergara All to Win (+330)
1u Lucas Alexander to Win (+150 or better)
Parlay Do’s: Njokuani, Parsons, Vergara
Parlay Don’ts: Sandhagen, Holm, Landwehr, Barber, Peterson, Cowan

UFC 287 (Breakdown next week but don’t expect line to hold)
2u Michael Chiesa to Win (-150)
Best of luck with your bets!
submitted by sideswipe781 to MMAbetting [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 18:00 Thea_From_Juilliard Eat Cheap and Volume Megathread

Use this thread to share tips for economical volume meals or inexpensive food finds! You may also share coupon codes (even referral links) and any cool sales on huge foods that you may hear about.
submitted by Thea_From_Juilliard to Volumeeating [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 17:54 liudhsfijf Best way on campus to eat lots of protein for relatively cheap

Context: currently a second year dorming. I’ve been working out and want to change my diet for the better, starting with higher protein intake since I’m practically a stick. This is honestly an excuse but I just cannot eat healthy at the dining hall. I’d always end up eating the pizza or fries instead of getting a sixth serving of the same dry chicken dish to get my protein. Does anyone know a good alternative that’s relatively cheap for eating healthy and semi-tasty food? Ty <3
submitted by liudhsfijf to uofm [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 17:51 Skapis9999 [Personal Opinion Mega Thread] Places to eat in Thessaloniki

Έλληνας εδώ, I see that many people, mostly tourists, post here to ask for recommendations for places to eat in the city. I will try to sum up all my experiences in different places in the city. Feel free to add your own opinions and suggestions.

Fast Food:

  1. Giok Balik. Near the White Tower Great Gyros, I recall that it was a bit less in quantity. I visited from time to time for the cooked food too. I love their Thai chicken. Pastitsio and mousaka were nice too.
  2. Savvikos in multiple places across the city. Ladadika, Aristotelous Square, Toumpa, and some others I can't recall/find them. Great gyros, a bit more expensive but with nice sauce. I mostly eat the "gyrlou".
  3. ΓΡΝ, in Toumpa while there is one store in One Salonica Mall too (haven't been there). Great gyros and nice pansetes.
  4. Μίμης, the legend himself Mimis is probably the cheapest nice place to eat Gyros. I love both the stuffed and non-stuffed burger in sandwich. (Για τους Έλληνες εννοώ το γεμιστο μπιφτέκι). I doubt that the guy there understand English.
  5. Katsamaka was a nice place for gyros. I can't remember what I ordered but it was great lol.

Difficult one
  1. I love the burger from Brothers in Law, near Agia Sofia, in Toumpa, and near Ladadika. I hate their french fries and their bans are average
  2. Tarantino in Ladadika is great but a bit more expensive. You can find it in Agora Modiano too. Check Agora Modiano section for more info.
  3. There are more but I have to try them
Thessaloniki is "the cheap Pizza" city. You can find cheap pizza by piece everywhere. Do not hesitate to take a piece. The standard price is 1.5 euro per piece. My favorite places are:
  1. Avanti Pizza. Of all the low-quality but tasty 1.5-euro pizza places Avanti is the best. I love Margarita
  2. The Last Slice is the best place to buy nice Pizza. 100% times better than the next one. The slices there are twice as big as the other places but they cost more than 3 euros. I highly recommend it.
  3. High School Pizza Bar. A nice place near the sea. Nice view, a nice environment. Different than the previous ones
  4. Πίτσα Σάκης. Low quality but I include for sentimental reasons because it is old and traditional
  1. ThessBao in their two locations in Plateia Eleftherias and near the White Tower. The only place for bao bans. I like them. I suggest the Pulled pork with black beer and honey.
  2. Salento amazing place for salentina, salciccia, and similar Italian sandwiches. Every time I go there it rains... sad. It's over Aristotelous square.
  1. No good falafel in the city. If you have ever eaten a falafel from a person born in Northern Africa or Middle East skip this category. If you haven't... there are plenty of good falafel places in the city lol
  2. Falafel Taste Middle East , near the White Tower is the best palce you can eat falafel in the city( according to me). You can find it in Agora Modiano too (see Modiano category)
  3. Falafel House is nice too
  4. Giok Balik has falafels too (see gyros category)

Slow Food:

Ψησταριές/κρεατικά/rotisserie-barbecue style/meat:
  1. Τηγανιές και σχάρες. Two restaurants in Ladidika and near the French institute. In the past, I used to select for delivery one of the 6 menus. When visiting the restaurant I enjoy Kontosouvli which is just amazing. Any of the three (pork, chicken, or sheep). The "hanged" souvlaki is great too. In the restaurant ,in Ladadika they have some amazing stuffed mushrooms too.
  2. Diagonios near the white tower. It serves gyros too which is a bit less "fast-food like" but its specialty is Soutzoukakia.
  3. Many years ago I had been in Ta Vlahika in Kalamaria. Great time, some may say that it is a traditional place to eat meat.

  1. Zythos in Ladadika with much more traditional food. I love Kotsi. The atmosphere is a bit more "old".
  2. Ergon Agora amazing place near Agia Sofia. I higly recommend some great dishes.
  3. Deka Trapezia near the White tower is my favourite place in the city. Small portions but.. wtf they are amazing. a bit more overpriced I suggest the french fries which are not like the common ones. Anything with fish is amazing.
  4. Haroupi in Ladadika is great for Cretan cuisine. My favourite one is Γαμοπίλαφο.
Asian Food:
  1. There is a bit weird and underground place to eat Indian food near Svolou Street. It is called Nargis
  2. No good Chinese and Japanese food found yet. Most of the ones I have tried are a bit overpriced and marginally above average.+ I forget the names all the time lol

Agora Modiano:

Agora Modiano is one of my favorite places to eat in Thessaloniki. It's a Stoa Market, an enclosed market in English. It has multiple, mostly fast food, restaurants to eat.
Right one the following brands (talking about eating) are there:
  1. Pescaderia (no review yet)
  2. Oshsenkopf (German brand with mostly hotdogs. I enjoyed a lot some friends of mine didn't. Probably the only place in the city I have found fast food with sauerkraut and enjoyed)
  3. Hatzi dessert shop. (check review in another category)
  4. Terkenlis (check review in another category)
  5. Aivali (I have been in their main restaurant. Their main restaurant is by the sea, and while I used to love it right now I would not suggest it. Only the view is great)
  6. Avgothiki (no review yet)
  7. Falafel "tastmiddleeast" (check falafel category)
  8. Tarantino (check burger category)
  9. Mister Mpampatsikos (no review yet)
  10. ΓΡΝ (check gyros category)
  11. Picco is a place where you can find Pinsas. It's nice, tasty, and big portions but a bit expensive. I suggest sharing one Pinsa between two people.
  12. Cevicheria (no review yet)
  13. Hive2o (no review yet)
  14. Estrella (it's a brunch place but I am not familiar with the "genre". I would suggest finding another place for brunch though.

PS. A second post will follow with taverns, bougatsa, pastry etc, cooked food, Mexican/Caribbean, and meme places to eat. I apologize for my poor English. I am free for suggestions and corrections
submitted by Skapis9999 to thessaloniki [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 16:39 throwawaymomslasagna AITA for making my girlfriend cheap lasagna ?

I (24F) make a delicious lasagna from scratch that takes hours and lots of money to make. It's so good that friends and family ask me to make it for them for birthdays instead of getting them a gift. Last month I decided to make it for my girlfriend (23F); I spent a lot of money on the ingredients and then more than half of the day making the herb infused fresh pasta dough, the ragu, etc... When she came over, she took a couple of bites and said that she didn't understand why I spent so much time and money on it because it tasted EXACTLY like the lasagna she would make with canned Panzani bolognese sauce and boxed pasta sheets (not similar, not kinda like, but EXACTLY like it). My feelings were a lil hurt ngl, but I understand that to each their tastes and I just told her I'm sorry she didn't like it that much and then kept it pushing and suggested we watch a movie.
Flashforward to yesterday, she was coming over for dinner and I asked her what she wanted to eat and she said "lasagna". So I popped over to the store and got panzani sauce and pasta sheets to make it because A)- She said my lasagna and the quick made one tasted the exact same, so no need to spend a lot on ingredients and B)- Because even if I had wanted to make my recipe, I wouldn't have the time since it takes me an entire afternoon, which is why it's a special occasions thing. So she showed up at my house, took one bite of the lasagna and then spat it out and said that it tastes different. When I told her I made it how she did, she got really upset at me and said that I wasn't putting in effort and that she was expecting to have a real meal and not something cheap. I pointed out the comments she made last time, and she rolled her eyes and said she was clearly exagerating. So then I got upset because wth?
The situation got brought up to our mutual friends, most have stayed out of it but two of them think I'm the asshole because my gf clearly meant she wanted my "special" lasagna which is why she asked for it as dinner, and that I should have let her known before hand that I was going to make one using premade sauce etc... I think it was clear that that's what I was gonna do cause she literally asked for lasagna 2 hours before coming over, which is not enough time to make the "special" one even if I wanted to. AITA ?
To clarify, the "cheap" lasagna tasted just fine, pretty tasty even! Just not at all comparable to the original one, in my opinion.
submitted by throwawaymomslasagna to AmItheAsshole [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 16:23 freequencycode The Buddha says "Mara is continually, ceaselessly, hovering around you" (Mara is the evil one)

"Once upon a time, monks, a hard-shelled tortoise was foraging for food in the evening along the shore of a lake. And a jackal was also foraging for food in the evening along the shore of the lake. The tortoise saw the jackal from afar, foraging for food, and so — withdrawing its four legs, with its neck as a fifth, into its own shell — it remained perfectly quiet and still. But the jackal also saw the tortoise from afar, foraging for food, and so it went to the tortoise and, on arrival, hovered around it, [thinking,] "As soon as the tortoise stretches out one or another of its four limbs — or its neck as a fifth — I'll seize it right there, tear it off, and eat it." But when the tortoise didn't stretch out any of its four limbs — or its neck as a fifth — the jackal, not having gotten any opportunity, lost interest and left.
"In the same way, monks, Mara is continually, ceaselessly, hovering around you, [thinking,] 'Perhaps I'll get an opportunity by means of the eye... the ear... the nose... the tongue... the body. Perhaps I'll get an opportunity by means of the intellect.' Thus, monks, you should dwell with the doors to your senses well-guarded.
"On seeing a form with the eye, do not grasp at any theme or details by which — if you were to dwell without restraint over the faculty of the eye — evil, unskillful qualities such as greed or distress might assail you. Practice for its restraint. Guard the faculty of the eye. Secure your restraint with regard to the faculty of the eye.
"On hearing a sound with the ear, do not grasp at any theme or details by which — if you were to dwell without restraint over the faculty of the ear — evil, unskillful qualities such as greed or distress might assail you. Practice for its restraint. Guard the faculty of the ear. Secure your restraint with regard to the faculty of the ear.
"On smelling an aroma with the nose, do not grasp at any theme or details by which — if you were to dwell without restraint over the faculty of the nose — evil, unskillful qualities such as greed or distress might assail you. Practice for its restraint. Guard the faculty of the nose. Secure your restraint with regard to the faculty of the nose.
"On tasting a flavor with the tongue, do not grasp at any theme or details by which — if you were to dwell without restraint over the faculty of the tongue — evil, unskillful qualities such as greed or distress might assail you. Practice for its restraint. Guard the faculty of the tongue. Secure your restraint with regard to the faculty of the tongue.
"On touching a tactile sensation with the body, do not grasp at any theme or details by which — if you were to dwell without restraint over the faculty of the body — evil, unskillful qualities such as greed or distress might assail you. Practice for its restraint. Guard the faculty of the body. Secure your restraint with regard to the faculty of the body.
"On cognizing an idea with the intellect, do not grasp at any theme or details by which — if you were to dwell without restraint over the faculty of the intellect — evil, unskillful qualities such as greed or distress might assail you. Practice for its restraint. Guard the faculty of the intellect. Secure your restraint with regard to the faculty of the intellect.
"When you dwell with the doors to your senses well-guarded, Mara, not getting any opportunity, will lose interest and leave, just as the jackal did with the tortoise."
"Like a tortoise with its limbs withdrawn in its shell, so the monk, the thoughts of the heart. Not dependent, harming no others, totally unbound, he would berate no one."
Kumma Sutta: The Tortoise from the Theravada tradition — the "Doctrine of the Elders," the earliest Buddhism.
submitted by freequencycode to EscapingPrisonPlanet [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 16:19 Discharged-Intern Least painful suicide methods?

I think this is it. There is no point in trying anymore. I'll never be fixed. I could go to a billion therapies, tell people that mean less than nothing to me about my life story, hear their empty words, pointlessly try to train my mind to think positive, I could do anything. I'd never ever be happy again. The trauma is eating me alive. The family that was supposed to protect, support and raise me, did nothing but break me. My Stepfather TRIED TO FUCKING KILL ME. I was never helped by anyone. I had to raise and protect myself. I can barely function anymore. I have no reason to force myself to go through this pain. The only thing keeping me here is the physical pain that you have to endure in order to die. Please. I need a way out. And don't think about telling me how beautiful life is. Because it's not.
Note: I'm a broke 14-Year-Old, meaning that I'll need something cheap.
submitted by Discharged-Intern to sad [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 15:54 Glammie6295 Underrated and overrated travel destinations

Spring and summer is upon us the travel season so I want to know what places do you think are overrated and what destinations should more people know about.
Overrated: Maldives Smh this was on my bucket list for as long as I can remember an overwater villa IT’LL BE FUN THEY SAID the devil is a lie. Y’all it was so gotdamn boring nothing to do but eat go in the water. All the guest usually stay to themselves, there are no activities besides jet skiing and snorkeling. Food was delicious and it is a beautiful place but DATS IT. The central air was mid as hell like damn does this thing go below 74. Highlight of the trip a black couple in the lagoon while we were playing dreams and nightmares halfway around the world and you hear your hometown anthem that was trippy.
Underrated: Bangkok, Thailand I wouldn’t say it’s underrated plenty of people go and there I definitely saw groups of black people. The people are friendly the food was delicious everything was pretty cheap. You can go from Phuket the resort area to Bangkok a quick cheap plane ride and Bangkok reminded me of New York 10/10 would recommend. Ohhh and you can get Xanax, antibiotics over the counter and I sure did stock up for that long ass plane ride knock me out please.
submitted by Glammie6295 to blackladies [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 15:35 IMicrowaveSteak Most underrated cheap eats in and around Nashville?

What places are an absolute gem that people really miss out on that provide way better value than what you’d expect for that price?
submitted by IMicrowaveSteak to nashville [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 15:15 Sothotheroth My ex-girlfriend is pregnant and I do not know what to do

I apologize for the length, but I feel like there are a lot of relevant details that need to be present for this to make sense. If there’s anything that’s unclear, I will do my best to answer questions. I’m trying to only include details that I can back up with material proof.

I (36M) met my ex in September of 2021. For this story, I am going to call her Sarah (37F), that is not her name. We met a local bar that has a sort of gothic horror theme. I’ve been sober by choice nearly two years now, but still like to go there for the people and the atmosphere. They serve soda and tea so there’s things I can get while I’m there. I was a late bloomer romantically and she was my first real relationship, even though I was 35 at the time. Our relationship turned sexual very quickly, although I consented to everything and never felt like one of us was taking advantage of the other, though she has much more experience than I do. We had discussed not wanting to have kids, and we had experimented with various types of birth control, including hormone pills, nuva ring, and condoms. I looked into getting a vasectomy, but my insurance wouldn’t cover it.

Before I met her, she had been overweight, and continued to be insecure about her weight, even though I always found her very attractive and reminded her of that all the time. This caused some issues, mostly notably her refusing to eat in front of me if I wasn't eating as well (a meal, not a snack) so I would sometime force myself to eat when not hungry which caused me some problems. She got gastric bypass surgery in May of 2022. I took her to and from the hospital for her surgery and the pre- and post-surgery care. I also took care of her dogs and her cat that time, driving back and forth between her place and mine (about 20 miles) several times – I loved her cat particularly, but took good care of all the animals and didn’t begrudge her a second of it.

Sarah has a best friend named Liz (38F, not her real name). They were former coworkers, and have been close for all the time since, ten or more years. The first time Sarah took me to meet Liz at Liz’s house, Liz’s dog Ruby immediately made a beeline for me, sat at my feet and stared up at me with the most loving look anyone had ever seen her make. I was also able to bring her cat Odin in when he ran outside in the rain. I wasn’t trying to showboat, I just like cats and don’t like them being in danger.

Less than a week after her surgery, I had a nasty bicycle accident and ended up in the emergency room myself. I was unconscious for several hours, and she and her dad came by and brought me food and things to do while I was under observation and recovering. The emergency response and hospital staff thought I had had a seizure and was in the ICU for a short time. I broke both of my thumbs, my right wrist, and my left shoulder, as well as bruised several ribs, had a concussion (and an accompanying headache for several days), and suffered some road burn and various more superficial injuries. I fortunately have a really high pain tolerance, and normal Tylenol was enough to dull the pain enough to sleep, which is really all I wanted to do while I was in the hospital. The staff offered me stronger painkillers but I refused, because I didn’t need it, and because my brother is a drug addict and addition runs in my family. She was pretty open about her previous addiction to painkillers, which was another reason for me not wanting to take any. She tried to force the issue, but I said I only wanted Tylenol and melatonin for sleep.

After I got out of the hospital, I had to use an arm sling for weeks because my shoulder needed to heal. For reasons I am not really clear on, I didn’t get a cast, but I made the best of it. I am a musician and play banjo and mandolin in two bands, so I hated having a broken shoulder (my main banjo weighs probably 15 or 20 pounds and it was way too heavy to comfortably hold for months after the accident). I think she really liked playing nursemaid to me, and me kind of being dependent on her. Because the neurologist thought I had had a seizure, she unofficially banned me from driving. It was around then that I found out Sarah hadn’t been paying her car insurance and her car was going to be taken off the road for a few months until the back insurance and a penalty it was paid. I let Sarah use my car for the time being. We took turns buying gas for it, even though she was using it most of the time. I should have kept better track of mileage; I know that now. It’s important to note that she didn’t have a job this whole time we were dating, which did strike me as odd, since her rent was approximately three times what I pay for an apartment of comparable size (to be fair, hers is much nicer and is from a rental company, where I rent from a single owner. I honestly don’t know where her money came from, and she would get very angry if I asked about it. Yes, I know this is a huge red flag, and I really have no excuse for not pressing the issue.

I work from home and had meal delivery and a grocery store walking distance from my apartment, so while I wasn’t doing too much around then, I was able to care for myself, and get rides from friends, or grab and uber when needed. I was focused on working and recovering, any by the beginning of July, I was able to do everything as normal, aside from fine motor skills with my thumbs. I was really focused on healing and getting better, and was getting a lot of what felt like condescending attention about the accident and my shoulder being broken, and around then Sarah started needing to use a cane. She said that she was having a hard time balancing, and had fallen on her face twice – there was no physical sign of injury, and these always happened when there was no one around to prove this. But she started using it everywhere, and I provided physical and metaphorical support for her there.

For Christmas 2021, Sarah’s mom got her a guitar. We had spent some time looking for a guitar for her, as the larger ones that I had were too big for her. It was a really nice guitar for a first guitar, a carbon fiber travel guitar that was light and well balanced. I gave her a few lessons, but when I broke my shoulder, I was unable to play for a while, and she decided to sell the guitar. I was against it, because it was nice, and it was a thoughtful gift, but she was set on it. When I was unable to find someone to buy it, we took it to guitar center, and they bought it for just under $600. Any amount over $500 from GC is dispensed in the form of a pre-paid debit card, but Sarah needed cash, so I bought the card for her in cash and registered it to my name so I could use it. I planned to use it exclusively for my phone bill, figuring that having one less bill to worry about would pay for the money I had given to Sarah after a few months.

After a few checkups from my accident, I took a seizure test which involved me staying in a hospital room for nearly a week, with 25 or so leads attached to my head and heart. To her credit, Sarah took care of my cats while I was there, and came to visit me every day for lunch or dinner. This exam was not cheap, and insurance paid for almost none of it, so I am actually still paying for it. I got out at the beginning of July and it was determined that I do not have a seizure disorder. I gave Sarah the debit card to buy food and litter for my cats, as well as to pay for her parking while she was visiting me. She gave it back to me when I got out of the hospital.

I got out of the test at the beginning of July and things were starting to get a little better. Intimacy had largely fallen away because of my physical trauma and misbalances within the relationship, but we actually had sex twice in July, on the fourth before a party and on the twentieth, before I went to band practice. Around this time, Sarah was unable to pay her internet/cable bill and her internet was disconnected. This sort of thing had been becoming a problem, as I was paying for most things, including some of her bills, but she was still buying junk like enamel pins and toys. I called her out on it once and it became a huge fight, so I didn’t do it again.

On the twenty-fifth of July, I woke up and realized that I was passing a kidney stone. This happens to me on occasion, but when I talked to Sarah about it, she said that she gets them too, and that it was a “good thing we’re not having kids,” to which I agreed. I have never wanted kids. Later that night, I went to pay my phone bill and found that the card had an insufficient balance. I went to the website that allowed tracking on the card and saw that the balance was less than $5, but it should have been about $450. I called Sarah and asked about it and she said that her mother must have used the card somehow. She went to bed, and I continued to investigate the issue. I saw that there were several orders to etsy and amazon, and contacted their support, and while Etsy couldn’t help me, when I gave amazon Sarah’s name, address, and email, they provided me with the list of orders, which was mostly toys for children, like two Tamagotchis and a Fox and the Hound Disney plush. This came on the tail of me giving her $150 for a dress for Liz's wedding, spending $100 on insulin for her cat, and her using my main debit card (with my knowledge) at a pin auction, though she spent about $200 more than I was expecting and it got my card cancelled and replaced.

The next morning, I called Sarah and said I knew that she emptied the card. She didn’t deny it, but her first question was “are you breaking up with me for this” and while I hadn’t thought about that before, I said ‘yes.’ She still had my car then, so she had to bring it back to me and I drove her home, and she tried the whole time to get me to not break up with her.

A week and a half later, she called me and told me that she was pregnant. She had already taken several tests and had made a plan to get an ultrasound done. Even though she had previously been as opposed to having kids as I was, said that she would be keeping the child. She had an ultrasound scheduled, and I went to it. The tech said it was less than six weeks along, seeing as there was basically an egg sack and no heartbeat yet.

There was another ultrasound scheduled, and while Sarah gave me the time, I was late and missed it. I saw her outside the clinic, and Liz was there with her. We talked for a few minutes and then I went back to work. I honestly don’t remember much about that encounter. That night, Sarah called me and we had about an hour conversation on the phone, and she explicitly asked me to get back together, and I said no. That was the last time we talked, except for her congratulating me on my first year or sobriety and me wishing her a happy birthday a few weeks later. I know that this won't paint me in the best light, but I honestly thought that she had lost the baby, otherwise she would have talked to me.

In October, a friend of mine from an old job, I’ll call her Jenny (33F, not her real name), reached out to me and said that one of her old dealers had called her and the caller ID came up as Sarah’s name. They had the same prepaid carrier, and the names come through within that system automatically. Jenny has had addiction issues, and used to buy drugs from this guy who apparently goes by a very silly street tag; I’ll call him Hamster (?M), even though that’s definitely an improvement over the real one. Apparently Hamster is a very hands on dealer and is a fan of the barter system; he is happy to take gifts for his kids, or payment in sex in lieu of money. While I can’t prove that they slept together, Jenny said I should go get tested, so I did, and everything came back clean. Jenny said that she hasn't really been in touch with Hamster since he got out of jail in May, but when she asked him about Sarah, he said he didn’t know her, but his face and voice indicated that he did.

Last week, someone sent me screenshots of a diatribe that Liz wrote in a facebook group about how I am a scumbag that abandoned Sarah and broke up with her for getting pregnant. Somehow Sarah managed to convince her friends of this despite us being broken up for at least a week or two before she found out. She is still pregnant, about to give birth, and that reality hit me like a ton of bricks. I do not want kids; the idea of raising a child makes me want to faint while barfing. But I also don’t think that Sarah is ready or able to care for a child. I don’t know what to do. Jenny is a moderator for the group and while it is a violation of group rules to send screenshots or tell the subjects of these discussions what was said about them, asked me for proof and confirmation of everything, and I provided it. Liz denies any of this, and says I broke up with Sarah only because she was pregnant. I didn’t find out for nearly two weeks after. I think that one of two things happened here; either she was sleeping with someone else (Sarah and I did not have sex at all from mid April to the beginning of July) and got pregnant and wanted me to believe it was mine; or she knew I would find out she was stealing and tried to get pregnant to get me to stay. I honestly don’t know what to do. I can’t trust Sarah at all, and I can’t trust her with a child, but I am not prepared to raise one either.

TL,DR: I broke up with my girlfriend for stealing and lying; she is apparently about to give birth and I am at a loss as to what to do.
submitted by Sothotheroth to legaladvice [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 15:03 Kalashalite Operation: Ramen Clone (Phase 1: Bone Broth Powder?)

To whom it may concern. I have been eating Nongshim SHIN BLACK Ramen with Black bone Broth like every day for lunch at work. It is EXTREMELY DELICIOUS, however I believe it has dubious nutritional info. Like most ramens it is extremely high in sodium and it's gotta not be great to microwave a plastic bowl all the time...
I don't want to give it up, it is cheap and great for my morale. I love to sip the broth once the noodles are gone!
I have decided I will buy my own ingredients in bulk and reverse engineer the ramen. But I have come to my first roadblock; Bone Broth Powder. That stuff is so expensive is there any cheaper alternative that comes in a powdered form? Or any alternatives?
I has to be powdered as I cannot store any wet ingredients.
I am aiming for each serving to be under $5 and around 300-500 calories. If you were to try and clone this ramen what would you use?

Here's what I have so far:
Top or Maruchen Ramen packets (ditch the seasoning pack)
I have a pound and a half of shiitake's I bought for $9.00 I will dehydrate them with my air fryer and use a few pieces for each bowl.
Green onions I will dehydrate with my air fryer
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder
Korean Red pepper flakes
Black pepper
Ginger powder
Tumeric Powder

submitted by Kalashalite to EatCheapAndHealthy [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 14:09 Spidersfromvenus Simple Simon

(Contempt, and pride.)
_ _ _
Simon arrived in the middle of town, in something big and yellow, which definitely wasn't a taxi. He had no idea about the extent to which he would end up identifying with that bright coloured (though often filthy and smelly) thing, or how much pride he would eventually have in it, and how much confidence its enormity would one day instil in him. Because, when it pulled up, and he climbed uneasily down from it onto the busy pavement (along with some other guys, who were pretty fit and pretty strong, and who alighted with much more confident ease) he was feeling as fish-out-of-watery as he may have ever have felt in his relatively young life.
Not feeling working class. Not like he'd hoped. Not feeling heroic.
A couple of impressive looking young women approached (among the throng) on their way to the cute little station thereby, from which they would be catching the heavily sardined train up to London. Simon didn't envy them that existence, at the points when he tended to think about it, but he knew what it all meant. He felt their impatience, as with all of the passing people, with a bunch of these stupid and burly young men suddenly creating an obstacle on the path to commuterdom. They were on their way to being powerful, these women, probably, things to say and be. Well, maybe. Simon hoped so, retrospectively.
The 'ganger' (the crew's mobile boss) was taking control. Kind of. But this was no normal day, not even for the ganger, because not only did he have to deal with the incompetent Simon (people in new jobs that they have never, ever done before are hard work, for trainers, Simon still thinks) but there was also a manager present, from the council. There had been a huge restructure, routes had all been changed, confusion had been caused, resistance had been encountered. It had all gone wrong, where loading on rounds been added to - only slightly, but the impact of this supposed slightness was that nothing was being completed. Work that was meant to happen weekly was lagging awfully.
'No, like this,' he was saying, to Simon. The ganger.
All the other guys had already got things sorted. Wielding black bags, in packs of fifty, that came in rolls and that those with experience could unroll, fold over their forearms, and be ready to set off with and individually detach with total nonchalance. All waiting, for fucking Simon.
They slipped off. The bags. They were, for sure, very slippy - which, for the practised people, made them all the more easy to slide, one from the other, so as to distribute them to individual households. But for stupid L drivers, they slithered free of their intended dispenser, and parachuted to the pavement where they still (but now unhelpfully) separated into a whole carpet of black bagness - meaning that those determined young women, with proper jobs, had to either avoid this new carpet or walk on it while Simon was bent down trying to pick its constituent parts back up.
Once separated, those rolls of bags will never go back together right. Drop them, or lose control of them, and that's fifty houses you have to completely empty of rubbish, before you have a new pack of black shinyness to work with. (Although, when you get the hang of it, fifty houses - which is actually a seriously daunting total - is only a drop in the bucket.)
'Ok, look, try it again?' (Ganger, again)
Sorry, sorry. In his head, over and over, not even able to speak audibly. Sorry.
The other guys had all set off. Away along the road. The manager, too. Just Simon, and the ganger, on that original bit of pavement. Stood next to where the driver still had that fucking massive truck, stationery, on a rush hour road, because he couldn't move either, couldn't accompany the main gang. Because of Simon.
Where's all your learning now, little boy? Your reading, your writing, your arithmetic. Can you even count to fifty, so as to have that many stray bags back in control?
Put your hands on your head? Put your hands by your side? Or put your legs into gear, and fuck off home? To your nice family, your suburban security? Period house, garden?
The ganger knows nothing of that. Not yet, not today.
Simon and his new boss are possibly ten minutes into this part of the day, by the time Simon's first bin is actually approached. It's almost right next to the waiting truck, apart from the intervening and fairly wide pavement, which is mostly why no movement of the truck has yet happened. This bin needs to be dealt with. And what is this bin now appearing as? A metal cage, a bit like a dalek, designed to keep out foxes and squirrels but able to allow some sort of air flow, and with a kind of gate-come-door at the front so that 'people' can undo a hook and get at what's inside. So what you have to do is unhook that hook, open that 'gate', and pull out a black bag that is now full (or over full, meaning it won't budge, and is ripping and spilling and overflowing everywhere) but, at the same time, you have to flip up the dalek's head, the lid, and undo another catch which loosens the metal ring that's securing the aforementioned crap laden bag into place. (Anything could be in that bag, or by now abandoned beside it. Hot fat, ashes which will have melted the plastic's bottom, and invalidated the structural purpose - assuming the bag wasn't from one of those cheap batches, that never had any validity in the first place - or maybe the contents will include slidy oil, or maybe massive shards of glass, or bricks, or maybe a combination of all of these things...) But forget the exact oozing, maggot infested contents, for now. What Simon was grappling with, was the problem of getting two separate catches undone, at more or less the same time, whilst opening a 'gate' and lifting a lid, while over one arm he is trying to keep control of a bunch of already unruly and slidy black eels, one of which will have to be separated away from the others and slipped back under that gripping ring, for some householder to properly insert, ready for the next bunch of crap to be dropped into it.
Sure, these tasks could all be separated out, and Simon could take a couple of minutes over (just) emptying each bin, instead of (when he finally got the hang of it, some days later) a couple of seconds. But 400 bins (per person) times 2 minutes, divided by 60, comes to over 13. He doesn't have 13 hours, to do this all in. None of the guys have 13 hours, and that is why the time and motion guy, the manager from the council, is tagging along. He is wrestling with the problem as to how the new rounds have gone so drastically to hell, and how everything is not hours behind, or even days behind, but weeks behind.
(Once a dustbin round gets that far out of synch, it's an issue. It's an issue which the dustmen themselves can do almost nothing about, anymore, because every path they walk up will take them to a bin that is so out of control, so unhealthy, so ravaged and torn, so piled-beside-of, that all ye who enter will just abandon hope.)
This is back in the 1980s. Before wheelies, but after the era of the heavy (even when empty) metal bins that had actually needed to be physically carried to the cart, and upturned by hand, as in 'My Old Man's a Dustman'. (Although Simon's old man was a commuting professional. Working from home not an option, back then. Covid, never heard of. Other diseases, but not that one.)
Simon's first ever overloaded bin was not even a lone bin. It was in a fenced off area, in a bin collective, where there were about 20 of them, all excitedly waiting for release. Everyone, it turned out, had made a serious error (including the time and motion man, who was away along the highway with the other guys) because Simon was not going to have those daleks under control, their tummies sicked up, and everything out and then fed into the - at this point - shiny, modern truck, any time soon. So the truck is still waiting, still in rush hour traffic, with a yawning driver who is being paid for his (amazing, it turned out) driving skills, completely redundant. Everything, in fact, is redundant, including the ram at the back of the truck, which could shove even the most ludicrous types of debris up the chute and into the body of the 'cart' with incredible efficiency, but which is motionless. Simon isn't feeding it, the ganger isn't feeding it, the other guys making their way up the street aren't feeding it, so rubbish (in toppling bags, but also loose) is piling up all along the busy footways, by the kerbs, and out towards to the impatient cars... The truck, not available to eat it up. Because of Simon.
The time and motion guy wasn't anything like as clever as he thought he was, despite being the manager. He was the one that had suggested the starting point, for the day's work. Trying to sort things out. He was the one who had set off up the road with most of the crew, leaving Simon to deal with 20 bins on his own. Because of him, the manager, and his teachings, round 6 had got off to an even worse start than probably any of the other rounds that morning, where all of the others would have been behind too, but at least their strategy might have been better, left to itself. No way would any of the other rounds have started off, 8 in the morning (by the time they had driven to where they were going, from the yard) in a street on the main through route across a town centre, and right on the busiest of all of the walking approach routes to the trains.
Simon, months later, was a ganger himself. (Proud, by that time, instead of feeling society's contempt, the way he experienced it on that first day.) No fucking way would he, as a ganger, have made those same choices, once he understood. (And they weren't anyway, as indicated, the choices that even the existing ganger, himself, would have made.) Simon would have changed (and did change) a whole lot of things, including the start times, and certainly including the decisions about when, and how, to tackle the areas by the various local stations, or other periodically heaving access points. But he will only ever be able to work that stuff out once he has listened to what the guys around him are telling him, including learning from the experiences of that particular ganger - who, whilst Simon is trying and failing to deal with those 20 bins, is probably wishing he was dead. He gives in and helps, of course. Gangers always did.
Without his help, and guidance, Simon could have been in that compound for the rest of his life, never mind 13 hours.
_ _ _
I'm going to leave Simon there, for now. He'll be back, I think, because what the dustmen had to say (about The Falklands, about right to buy, about race, about education, about music, about drink, and about a whole lot of other things) is interesting. It deserves airing. How dusting fits into the world is crucial, despite that it may now be on wheels. A very visible element, in the 'winter of discontent': piles of those bags, where you can send in the army but the army are just, in many respects, in context, a bigger and fitter and more expensive bunch of Simons, with things they might better be doing if far away islands are going to get appropriated. And if Simon can be kept free of other baggage, then maybe he can write about just that one area of interest, with only little bits of stray voices sometimes creeping in (the way they always will, in all writing, but which may need to be controlled better, in my case.
Incidentally, I like that there's a singer called Eliza Doolittle. Interesting, that she apparently dropped the Doolittle part. But Eliza Doolittle, and 'My Fair Lady' are definitely going to get passingly written about, once this whole question of how to do it is sorted out. Eliza Doolittle had a dustman father. A proper one, with those old metal bins, that have inspired (I think) some seriously engaging pieces of art. I'm not a great art lover, but I know what I like, in that wardrobe. Art, though, definitely for another time.
_ _ _
Now let's meet Paul. (Again?) Paul is a different character to Simon, because he's emotionally fucked. He gets used as a narrator by someone who is even more fucked, to try and straighten things out. Someone who can't work out how to write, because it's fine to have a voice, but not a whole rampant gaggle of them, like the results of the tower of Babel.
Paul once played a song, as a part of a band, for his friend and his friend's wife (both of whom he loves) at their wedding. (He has a different song which he thinks of, when thinking of them, themselves, which is 'I Will Always Love You', as sung by Dolly Parton and not as rather more elaborately sung by Whitney. Obviously, that is not the only song that occurs to Paul, when thinking about a massive relationship which has endured years, but it is the one which his friends themselves like to go back to, when considering their marriage. They have it on a juke box, at their house. Honestly, a real juke box. With lots of songs on.)
Anyway, Paul played guitar at that wedding, their wedding, for the one song only. For the rest of the performance of 'his' band, he played drums. It was another first ever. Like, it could have been walking three baby steps to a chair, or learning his alphabet, or driving a car the opening few yards and then realising that stopping a car in control is far more difficult that getting one moving. (If you mess up the part about getting one moving, it just stalls, or jerks for a bit, and all is fine - assuming that you didn't try and pull out into a busy road, in rush hour.)
Paul, he has always had nothing but contempt for his performance, that day.
The song he played is sometimes regarded as a showpiece song. It includes a solo, which gets talked about. It is, however, a solo which is pretty much within the grasp of more or less any determined guitar player, assuming they happen to have a very musical sister who will spend hours and hours working out the exact notes, on the piano, from a slowed down LP, and writing them down on a stave. No 'You Tube', back then.
Paul is not great with staves, but he managed, and was hugely grateful, and would have been totally stuck otherwise. He learns mostly by ear, which is why he couldn't sort out the pattern of that solo for himself. It's too fast for his ear to deal with, and his ear is not totally reliable (where many, many musicians have ears which are better, including one of Paul's brothers, who again is for another time). But where this is getting to is that that solo isn't too fast to play, once you know the road map. And it's a whole lot easier on a guitar than, say, on a piano and in fact you can't possibly play it (perfectly) on a piano because a piano can't bend notes in order to move toward, and then reach, different notes. You can't take your finger off one note, on a piano, and in doing so automatically drop that note to a different one. Given those tricks (which Jimmy Page uses, too, very nicely, if he's not completely off his head) it's definitely doable, that solo. But this all then ties in to one of Paul's developed problems in looking back at this song, on that day (the first problem being that he is the kind of person who does do that kind of looking back, in the first place, where others may just move forwards). He thinks people may assume he is merely trying to big himself back up, after having apparently fallen right down. But he's never felt specially big, just decent. Paul can play a guitar, but then so can Ziggy, and Mick Ronson is in a different class, and Paul absolutely knows that and has no problem with the truth of that. Paul's former best friend could pay a guitar too, and make it ring like a bell. Go, Johnny. Let it rip! It's not about being specially Goode, or any of that. In the end, its about good old fucking up, when there was no need to, even in nursery type environments. But where, in those first times at trying things, it often happens.
You don't want to let friends down, in expensive marquees (and maybe a part of that might involve not being in a pub, getting pissed as a fart, during their actual speeches and risking being unable to stand, let alone play, so as to be able to perform what they'd asked - which had been practised, and which we (as a band, not as a collection of individuals) could have pulled off no problem, in theory, but which we didn't - when we lost the audience (one of whom, afterwards rather amusingly shouted out 'play 'Stairway to Heaven'?'). But we didn't let them down. They asked for it, and we played it (and my friend and founding bandmate Graham, as already stated, played it solidly - not as John Bonham, but as a perfectly competent drummer, having never drummed in his life) and the recording exists for the now long wed couple to listen to, and remember their day, and...
What the fuck is the problem, for Paul, in all of that? OMG. There isn't one!
Years later, Paul played some Brian Ferry style bass on 'Baby I Don't Care', and some kinda quirky but passionate rhythm/lead guitar on 'Blue Suede Shoes' and 'Sea Cruise', in that huge room where the juke box stands, and we (the whole band, including a piano player) fucking blew that room away. It wasn't musically brilliant, it wasn't hard stuff - it was just rehearsed, and tight, and we believed in it, and we had resolved a few other issues along the way. It got there, in the end. Why the agony, over the journey?
As late as last night, I think I finally put 'Stairway to Heaven' to bed, having made my way up to our current bedroom, along with my wife, happier. I still wrote about it this morning, though, but only, in part, so's I could send this to my sister. And, in part, because maybe I can further continue to see a way through, for me, for better writing, for later. And, relative to this skeleton, I can survey its wondrous bones, overwrite my contempt, and pour some rational pride on it. And, at the same time, I can marvel at what must have been going through my Grandad's mind, when he used to sit in his chair in the early mornings, bible to hand, contemplating his own wondrous crosses. I still need to deal with that hymn's line about gains and losses, in my head, but not now, when I (like Alice Cooper, in 'Hello Hooray') feel so (much more) strong.
It really doesn't matter, after all of this, what I actually think about Stairway to Heaven? - but now that I can get to it, I may as well make a comment or two. John Lennon (it may in fact have been Jasper Carrot, in a retrospective joke, but who knows for sure) supposedly once said that Ringo Starr was not the best drummer in the world, and not even the best drummer in 'The Beatles'. (Which didn't make Ringo a bad drummer, by any stretch.)
The same, for Stairway. As implied already, elsewhere, I think that 'Celebration Day', for example, is better. But that's an opinion that I haven't always dared to express, other than to people very close to me.
And maybe writing never could work, for me, if I never dared to say anything that indicated what I actually believed in.
Further down the line I will try and pay tribute to a man that my wife and I knew, who wrote plays, and who had already passed that particular milestone, by a long way.
Step, by step. To be a rock, but still to roll. Otherwise, you stay in the same place, for ever?
submitted by Spidersfromvenus to creativewriting [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 13:33 SchlesingerMindy323 [HIRING] 25 Jobs in AL Hiring Now!

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submitted by SchlesingerMindy323 to AlabamaJobs [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 12:33 PutridBite Last of the Defenders - Ch 27

Welcome new readers. Please start with chapter one
It took hours. Allah realized the sun was walking away when they finally stepped out of the great quorum hall. Ada’key’hamda and Allah’hem’nrah walked to either side of Li, a group of elders and tradesmen flocking behind. They carried charcoal and papers, hastily drawn maps and long scrolls of lists--names of the future displaced, materials to be salvaged, and more workers than she could count--as they jostled to be heard over each other.
Allah glanced over her shoulder as the wide double doors began to close, ears twitching frustratingly at Marn’charlie’weh who stood on the dais still, amber eyes glowing with barely contained fury. She had been the most vocal of the group surrounding her now, the Detractors Allah called them in her mind. Most of their arguments had been weighed and addressed--even bringing forth solutions to unforeseen problems as the idea of extending the roads had progressed from Li’s ultimatum into cooperative planning.
Both sides had compromised. The southern Smithhall and much more of the buildings between the outpost and the outer wall would be torn down. The proposed road to the north would be almost doubled in width too, to accommodate the increase in traffic. More importantly, to Allah’s way of thinking, were the inclusion of U’knock work crews into Li’s plan. Her people would oversee the construction of the roads and tearing down the city’s outer wall to make rapidly usable materials.
It had been that last point that nearly set Allah’hem’nrah and Marn’charlie’weh to blows. This had only been the second quorum she had been honored to sit in, neither of them as a member, but the vociferousness and vitriol that passed from mouth to ear had startled her.
“You claim a need to protect our people!” Allah could still remember Marn’charlie’weh shout. It had woken her from her dozing. “And with the other paw you rip down the very walls that shelter us! Holes in the inner ring? Dismantling the outer? Will you take all of our warrior caste with you to fight the bullies too? If they are bullies!”
Li had risen from the floor to confront the black elder, Marn’charlie’weh almost twice the height of the human even then, but a spotted paw thrust between them and Allah’hem’nrah walked to block her.
“I will not be shamed,” she roared, the only time the stalwart pride mother raised her voice, “by this council as to cower and hide while a cub fights for our lives!”
She had pointed to Allah who, at the time, was shamelessly curled up on a cushion. The cub, roused from her dozing, sat up, licked a forepaw and made a show of grooming her fur. It was not Allah’s fault she had fallen asleep; they would not stop talking! On and on they went, arguing over the most minute details only to circle back on a once settled matter and point out how doing one thing would somehow upset two others. Even when it did not. Especially when it did not!
“The warriors will fight in this war!” and the proclamation from Allah’hem’nrah had elicited a scattered cheer from half the quorum.
Li had spent much of the quorum kneeling on a Nameday cushion--anything larger than the small pad used to carry kits to the quorum when they opened their eyes would have swallowed her--sipping water from a clay cup and only put in suggestions when directly asked. Which became less and less frequent as the day dragged on toward night. Allah only realized how long they had been there when Jung reminded her to take her pill!
“I think,” Li had said, rising from her cushion and stretching, “we’ve settled what we can in one day.” Allah rose to follow, eager to be away from these screaming, argumentative adults. “If you have something of substance to add, I’ll be outside the south gate at sunrise,” and the last of her words had a hint of warning, “about an hour before the first tank is scheduled to roll out.”
With that, Li rose, bowed to the throne dais, and strode purposely from the great hall.
And now they walked, not as unwelcomed outlanders who should be chased off, but as people of importance whose presence was harkened by quorum members begging attention.
Or, at the least, Li did. Allah found herself carefully shuffled further and further away from her friend, carefully avoiding elders who jostled past her and ever more dangerously close to the taser belt’s kiss. They did not seem to care, even knowing what the belt could do after Li explained its workings and Guard Captain Fen’ja--belatedly arrived, washed and no longer twitching--had confirmed.
Perhaps, Allah considered, another demonstration was in order. Let one brush up against her? And through a wall? She set such petty thoughts aside. These people were preparing as if for a great storm coming to the land. Shoring up the city for a blizzard named Li.
And the bully horde that followed.
Allah contented herself with being persistently pushed back. If she could contribute, she would try. What she was asked, she would answer. And she would not fault Li. Her friend had been as good as her word and as they stepped outside the cub saw a scribe carrying a stack of posters in her paws, could hear a crier chant “Fey’arna of Hada’neha is requested and required to make his presence known to the nearest city guard. A reward is offered for his safe return.” Surely her father would be found soon, news of him at the least and Allah would go to him.
But for now, Allah had made a promise to Li. She would stand beside her friend…if these quorum members ever got out of the way…
Allah busied her eyes and ears in learning this new place. The smell was only U’knock, a packed down scent of many bodies forced together. It reminded her of the mob. Even as the sun was setting behind the tall buildings the street was alive. Tradeswomen and males carried their goods, families shopped at stalls and cubs ran in play or just from the joy of slipping a father’s leash for a time. The buildings were all taller than any hut, packed into squares and high roofed rectangles. Only the doors and the largest structures were domed. Even the glass in the new windows had straight, with sharp unnatural edges.
That was the word Umati’clam conjured to her: unnatural. Even with so many--because there were so many--of her people packed within, Allah felt more and more like a stranger in these confines. How long had she dreamed of walking the fabled city streets? Now she would give up her tail to curl up on her cushion in front of the fireplace, claw the rough burlap and kneed the straw inside to lay her head down and rest. To be home and safe again.
With her fa.
She was not expecting guards when they reached the wall. Four of the metal humans stepped outside the bubble as it popped, speaking in Demeter’s voice.
“Stand away from the entrance,” they said as one, raising black bowless Com’cha with those deadly tubes in their place. “This is your only warning.”
“I’ll do what I can,” Li said by way of apology as the throng of quorum members receded slowly from the opening wall, “but our timetable is going to be tight. Remember Allah’hem’nrah,” she continued, motioning Allah to step forward, “I want at least two level headed warriors per village. These people are not beggars or simply displaced. And they may be vital to rebuilding your home.”
“I do not see how,” the spotted warrior stepped back as Allah stepped closer, “but we will do as you command, Defender.”
“Uh uh,” Li admonished, wagging a finger at the massive U’knock.
“Li,” Allah’hem’nrah corrected, her lips tightening.
Li gestured to Allah again and the two stepped through.
“Could not your ambassador,” Ada’key’hamda called but did not step past the robot guards, gray fur bristling as the first night wind chilled her, “stay with us longer, Friend Li? We still have questions she might be uniquely capable of answering.”
Li and Allah both turned back, the human grinning with a light bow. “That holds true for me too,” the human said softly. “Unfortunately, Allah’s duties at the moment will be keeping her close to me. Any questions can be relayed through these droids,” she gestured to the armed machines. “They can relay any pertinent queries to Jung or myself through Demeter.”
The wall began to seal itself and Allah’hem’nrah raised one paw in the air, waving it back and forth. “Gud B’eye!” the spotted warrior called.
“Bài bài,” Li wiggled her fingers and the massive U’knock chuffed. As the hole in the wall sealed, the sounds of the city silenced. Allah looked up to see the bubble shimmer in place.
Li slumped her shoulders, stretched and yawned. “Now that’s over with,” she said tiredly, “you want something to eat?”
“I am honored to share your table again,” Allah nodded a bow of thanks as Li turned toward the spire, “but what ‘other’ duties do I have?”
“Mostly?” Li winked as she glanced over her shoulder, “Staying clear of Ada’key’hamda. And Marn’charlie’weh, for that matter.” The human frowned at the blank expression on Allah’s face. “Don’t get me wrong, I like that old gray ‘māo’,” Jung translated the word as a subspecies of Earth native animals with an image that explained much of Li’s previous jibes, “but I don’t trust her any further than I can throw her. Or Allah’hem’nrah if it comes to it. Not fully.”
“Why not?” Allah turned back to the closed wall gate. The pair had quickly become the most vocal supporters of Li’s side during the quorum. “They seemed to trust you.”
“Allah’hem’nrah does,” Li confessed, “or at least she believes me a ‘defender’ and understands the threat the swarmers pose. Sounds like she was breastfed war stories as a kit,” Li scratched her head, combing her hair with her fingers, “but she’s gonna do what she thinks is best for her people. And that might not be what's best for the U’knock. Or winning this war.”
Allah considered this. She wanted to say an honored elder would not be so dishonest but…Ana’nut’hana’s betrayal of her father…their exile reminded the cub that no matter how unified the U’knock love of Defenders and hate for bullies was supposed to be, a shallow cup could not hold deep water. If her own mayor could do such to her and Fey’arna then what were strangers capable of?
“And Ada’key’hamda?” she asked with interest. They had passed the landing pad and rapidly closed on the doors to the spire.
“That woman?” Li grinned lopsidedly as the double doors whooshed open, “is what my people call a ‘kingmaker’,” she waved away Allah’s questions, “it means she is a pure blood politician; shrewd and devious. She only sided with us because she knew where the winds were blowing.”
“I hope,” Allah confided, stepping into the noisy chaos of the garage, “that you are wrong.” Her voice rose to a shout above the hissing, clanging commotion.
“I hope I’m not!” Li answered as they hurried past the noisy room and into the hallway. Once the noise of work had died to a dull den she explained. “We’re going to need somebody that conniving on our side to keep Marn’charlie’weh in check. Um…at bay.”
“Jung explained chess,” Allah answered the unspoken question. “And go.”
“Gooood!” Li’s smile must have been more predatory than intended, Allah assumed, as the human showed her teeth. “I’ve got a board in my quarters aboard the Stardancer. Fancy a game when he gets back?”
“I would rather know,” Allah nodded at the offer, “why you need two warriors to travel to the villages.”
“Ah,” Li turned at a crossroads in the hallway, then looked up “Demeter, where’s the nearest mess hall?”
The pleasant voice had returned as a blue beam illuminated. “Please follow the indicated footpath!” Li quickly strode onward.
“Is there any food available for carbon based consumption?”
There was no response as Li and Allah followed the glowing blue line. “Demeter, is there any food available for carbon based consumption?”
“Stores are restocked from the garden every fifty years, cooked and freeze dried for long term access! We have a selection of prepackaged meals ready to eat! Just add hot water and--”
“Demeter,” Allah interrupted as they entered a large room filled with long beaches and tables, “Please be quiet.” Then, to Li she said “You are avoiding my question.”
“I wasn’t avoiding,” Li said in a scolding tone, “I was stalling. There’s a difference. Demeter? Where’s the food!?!”
“Li,” Allah’s tone was stern and pleading at the same time, “Why?”
The human stopped in the center of the room, shoulders slumping. “I kinda wished you’d’ve been awake for that part. It didn’t go over too well with the quorum either.”
“Stop stalling,” Allah admonished, “What is wrong?”
“Allah,” Li stood in the center of the room, raised and then lowered her hands. “Allah,“ she said, “I need you to prepare yourself. What happened last night was only the opening salvo. Things are going to get worse. A lot worse before we’re done here.”
“The U’knock are accustomed to hardship,” Allah straightened. “We will persevere.“
Li shook her head. “That’s not what I meant. I know your people are strong. I know they’re proud, and I believe they will fight for their home. But are they willing to leave their lives behind to do it?”
“Leave?” Allah pursed her lips and thought. “Why would we need to leave their lives?“
“We don’t have a full planetary shield around this rock,” Li answered. “The safest place for them is going to be in Umati’clam. They’ll have to relocate. All of the villages will have to relocate.
“And,” from the expression on the human’s face, the news she gave was worse than it sounded when she said “Some of them might not make it.”
submitted by PutridBite to HFY [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 12:20 ThrowRA546236 I 26M am desperate will lose a 21F incredible connection

Hello people of Reddit, is my first post here but I read a lot of relates here. I'm not a native English speaker so forgive my errors.
I 26m, went to a mall one day to buy some cologne for me, and I saw the most beautiful girl I ever seen in my life she was working in the cologne store. When our eyes met I felt a instantaneous connection with her. She 21f came to talk to me and helped me to choose my cologne, she smiled a lot, and I felt she was flirting with me. So I got a paper and a pen and discreetly gave my number to her, she accepted and in that day she texted me. I was very happy, it worked, I never did that before, but I felt she was worth. We talked for like 4 hours straight, asked her Instagram but she said doesn't have it, this was a little bit strange but I accepted, then she said her phone was dying, I said it's okay we talk tomorrow.
Next day I was blocked in her Whatsapp, I didn't understood anything because I didn't said anything wrong. Couple weeks later I went again to the same mall (my city just have one mall), and I saw her again working there. I didn't want to looks a creep so I didn't did anything, but she saw me there. Everytime I went to this mall we saw each other, but I didn't want to bother her and tried to do my stuff, this keep happening for like 2 months. One of these days I said hi when I passed in front the store, she startled a little but said Hi back. This day she texted me asking me what I was doing there, I said I was just eating something. She asked if I could stay close her store because was winter and she was bored without any clients. I accepted of course. I stayed stand for like 5 hours talking to her, she said found me cute the first time saw me, then I asked why she blocked me, and she said was her boyfriend, but she wants to leave him because he don't respect her and stuff... We kept talking until the mall closes, then I offered her a ride because she used to takes a bus home every night at midnight. She refuses because her boyfriend will not like this, I accepted this and went home.
Then everytime I went to the mall I was seeing her and staying for hours talking to her we kept doing this for a couple of weeks, one day she said they had a argue and talked about breaking, I tried to give her advices to fix her relationship, but she doesn't want to because was tired of him. In this day she accepted my ride home and gave me some hints about cheat on him with me, I said no and left her home. I was liking her but I don't want to be part of a cheat. Then I gave her like 4-5 rides home when I went to the mall, but we never even hugged, just talked about everything, relationships, energies, connection, life, movies. I was very happy, I was feeling a huge connection with her, her smile makes me happy. I wanted her to finish her relationship, but I always said the opposite to try to fix everything with him. One day, she texted me saying she had broke with him, but she will move to another country to be with her family, because she was living with him and didn't had anywhere to go, I didn't want to appear desperate, and acted cool being supportive. In that day I went to the mall but after, instead to go to her house, we came to my house. We had s*x, the connection was awesome, our energy, was the most enjoyable experience in my whole life. Never had a so good intercourse even in my previous long term relationships.
Asked her to sleep here, but she refuses, I respect and took her home.
We kept talking she always saying how I was important to her, and how she loved to be with me. She said things like visit her when I could, and she will do this too when come to here again. We live in Europe so everything is pretty close and cheap to travel.
She left the country. It was painful. But we kept talking how we still like each other and wanted to be together one day, but not now because of her recently broke. I that moment I realized I was in love with her. And told her that, she said the same, she was in love with me aswell. I felt blissful. She was everything I ever wanted in a girl, but the most important was our energy connection. And we kept talking for like 2 weeks how we miss each other and wanted to be together. She bought plane tickets to came here to see me one month from now. In that moment I was so happy because everything was so perfect, sometimes we told each other about the fear to trust some one like that, but I dedicated her my heart and was very clear about my feelings to her. She always said how she liked me and wanted to take care of me. For sometimes we slept in phone call, I sang to her sleep, told her fairytales story to help with her anxiety to sleep.
Then, 1 week after she bought the tickets, her ex bf called her and begged to come back, she felt really bad and said he said very bad things to her. She asked me to stay by her side and never abandon her, so I did. I was 100% supportive all the time, clear with my feelings, said everything with very caution to be very clear. She said was in love with me and never want to come back to him.
1 week later she was very different from her usual talking to me, taking 3 hours to answer, answering short phrases, ignoring some things. I knew what's was going on, but was very polite and asked her if we have a problem. She said yes, and said her ex called her again saying how he misses her, and how he loves her. She said she will use her plane tickets to see him instead of me, and said: "we have to stop this we are having, you are very important to me but I have to do this, I have to do this to be sure about him, even if I have to sacrifice you in the process"
Guys. My world ruined. I felt so fucking bad. I don't desire this feeling to anyone. Now she will be here in town in a week and we even talk anymore. My question is? What I do? I fell in love other times but I never felt this energetic connection before. There's some details I skipped in this story to short it a little but I can answer any questions in the comments, please help me I'm not being able to sleep, eat or work anymore. I know she already gave up on me, but I have to give up this energy? This is so fucking rare. I already cried a lot. I'm really desperate.
I will update this after she cames to town and tell you if something changed.
submitted by ThrowRA546236 to Advice [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 12:13 razzy2014 Rice and Beans

Was wondering why rice + beans combo never became a staple in PH cuisine like in other countries. It's cheap, nutritious and beans are abundantly available. Curry, I get, since spices aren't as accessible, but most everyone loves their beans. As viand/sides (e.g. popular canned P&B, monggo soup) and dessert (e.g. hopia, halo-halo, other mashed bean-filled pastries). Can be cooked in a big batch for cheap for the whole family on a tight budget, can be sauce-y as the way most want to eat their rice, flexible enought to be sweet, salty, or spicy, not complicated to cook.
Rice & Beans
Or is this common and it's just me/in our household growing up that's been deprived of r&b dishes? Lol If the former, drop your favorite/tried-and-tested recipes here so we can try them out.
submitted by razzy2014 to Philippines [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 12:03 nychead099 Goings on about town

Hi All :)
Got into Berlin today here for a few days. Staying around mitte. Looking to eat good / cheap food, chat up some locals at bars, see some history and unique parts of the city. Possibly dance a little and chat up some people. Any direction you could point me in?
Thank you
submitted by nychead099 to berlinsocialclub [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 11:49 Bartoni17 One wild ride of an interview with Polish NT goalkeeper Łukasz Skorupski from Bologna. He jokingly asked prime minister for 10 million PLN bonus and he accepted it.

Recently Łukasz Olkowicz from Przegląd Sportowy made an interview with Łukasz Skorupski. Here's original:
And here’s translation:

Łukasz Olkowicz: You know what interests people.

Lukasz Skorupski: Bonus?

Bonus. Didn't it occur to you that people would be furious when they found out about it?

Łukasz Skorupski: We knew. We were talking to each other and we knew they could be fucking furious.

And that didn't stop you?

Łukasz Skorupski: It wasn't our idea. The prime minister promised a bonus. In words, nothing on paper.

But you agreed.

Łukasz Skorupski: There was a chat between us: We'll get it - nice. We'll not get it? We didn't go crazy about it. You understand? The bonus was too much because it was too big.

You negotiated part of it yourself. At dinner with the prime minister, you got ten million more.

Łukasz Skorupski: I was talking about something, but it was for funnies. And the prime minister accepted it. In my opinion, at such tournament, we should not talk about the bonus at all, everything should be settled on paper before the World Cup. There was little we could do. They told us about it just before leaving to Qatar, we were goiing to the airport right away. Normally, we would have arranged this beforehand.

When did you start talking about the bonus in Qatar?

Łukasz Skorupski: After promotion from the group. Some things journalists wrote were true, some things not. Arguments started between us, talks with the coach. We've all been so excited in the team, I'll be honest: bonus, bonus, when is the bonus?

And you know what's best?

That you didn't get it?

Łukasz Skorupski: No, that the team had a great atmosphere at the tournament. For example, we would come back from training and sing songs. We laughed that we are like Brazil. Because this Brazil was having fun after each training on drums, and we would come back and sing songs from the 90s, 2000s. We had our loudspeaker in the back, everyone chose, and then the rest picked up. Great stuff. Same music at the gym. It was fucking awesome, really. After the games we went out for dinner, we took care of the atmosphere. We were a good group, we were close. The atmosphere was fantastic and then it all went downhill.

Money ruined it. You had an argument over the distribution of the bonus.

Łukasz Skorupski: We are promoted fromt the group and instead of being happy, we suddenly started arguing about this bonus. You'll have so much, others so much. But we were arguing so much that we didn't talk to certain players. And the day before we sang together. The match against France was approaching. "Lewy" says, the team council: "Gentlemen, let's make a deal. We can't think about the bonus, only about the match." We agreed not to talk about this bonus anymore. With all due respect to money, but no one on the team lacks it. Calm came back, we played the game.

The best in the tournament.

Łukasz Skorupski: And then the story began in the newspapers.

Did you follow this?

Łukasz Skorupski: I read something, but you know more... They promised us an exaggerated bonus, but instead of being happy that we were promoted from the group, they started to shit on us.

You have exposed yourself. Wouldn't you be better off if you said, "We got lost in this, we lost our heads for a moment"? You said yourself the bonus was exaggerated.

Łukasz Skorupski: The media live off such information.

The media mainly shot at Czesław Michniewicz (NT coach) because of the bonus.

Łukasz Skorupski: I'll tell you that I felt a bit sorry for him. I had a good relationship with him.

Why didn't you answer?

Łukasz Skorupski: To whom?

To journalists. In his defense, if you wanted him to stay.

Łukasz Skorupski: We have agreed internally that we do not talk about it with the media. I guess "Lewy" later gave an interview about it, right?

And Grzegorz Krychowiak.
Łukasz Skorupski: Later, when we got along and the match against France was over, we sat down for dinner, drank some wine and everyone got over it.
Has the tension released?
Łukasz Skorupski: We didn't talk about the bonus anymore. A lot of people left immediately after the game. But let me tell you in general - the atmosphere was great. It was beautiful in that respect. Beautifully.

Have you heard discussions from Poland about the style of the national team's play? That people have doubts?

Łukasz Skorupski: We sometimes talked among ourselves that the style was average.

The team was successful, but people turned up their noses. Did you understand the criticism? Objections from fans and journalists?

Łukasz Skorupski: We understood, but we kept telling ourselves that the result is the most important thing. And the results were good?


Łukasz Skorupski: The game wasn't beautiful, everyone said it was ugly, but it delivered results. Why are you looking at me like that? We advanced from the group? We advanced.

Did you like this game?

Łukasz Skorupski: Damn... I don't want to criticize Czesio like that either. The coach sets the tactics. He wanted us to play that way, so we did what he told us.

Did you believe in this tactic?

Lukasz Skorupski: What? It woked. We advanced from the group. At the club you play quite differently, more football. On the other hand, I understand Czesio a little. When was he supposed to train it? Like in the World Cup, we played every three days.

Others played differently.

Łukasz Skorupski: Fuck, who were we playing with? With Argentina. They are the best players in the world, they set their own tactics.

And with Mexico?

Łukasz Skorupski: And what, did Mexico play well with the ball? Better than us?

You and they played not to lose. There wasn't too much risk.

Łukasz Skorupski: After all, we wanted to win. If we had scored a penalty, we would have won. What... We played so poorly?

The match against Mexico was considered the worst at the World Cup. Skorup, teeth hurt.

Lukasz Skorupski: Really? I do not know what I can say. But what, in total we drew 0-0. Should I criticize the coach now?

No, just don't get off topic. Tell me how did you react?

Łukasz Skorupski: We were aware that the fans were attacking us. On the other hand, such a tournament is the biggest in life, you don't want to spoil anything. And you can't go wrong. You understand? One mistake and it's over. You know you can't lose the first game. You play tournaments differently than you play qualifying. We wanted to leave this group, for us it was a success, wasn't it? When was such a success last time?

36 years ago.

Łukasz Skorupski: And why is it not talked about at all? There was talk about the bonus and style, and the fact that Poland went to the World Cup and left the group after 36 years and there was silence. Did we play badly against France?

Lukasz Skorupski: You see. We lost, but individually we were blown away by players who are the best in the world. Why do you think we played like that in Qatar?

Because that's what the coach chose. I think he thought the result would cover everything. It did not cover. The first such a long discussion about style has begun in Poland, in which both sides have arguments.

Łukasz Skorupski: Exactly, everyone has their own opinion. I'm interested in winning matches, points. I'm out for the rest. For me, the most important thing is the result.

You don't care about style?

Lukasz Skorupski: No. I don't care when someone says that the national team or Bologna play badly. There are three points? There Are. Thank you. Who will remember in ten years how we played. They will remember our results.

Or that in the match against Argentina you ran to survive and lose as little as possible.

Łukasz Skorupski: It was our match for everything. It is known that this Argentina eats us with talent, right? We were there more with such working our assess off, we chose the simpliest football. We were tried to stay in the tournament. We couldn't risk anything. Nothing. That's the truth.

But then it goes out into the world that one of you ran around asking them not to shoot again.

Łukasz Skorupski: But is it true?

You tell me.

Łukasz Skorupski: I don't know if anyone asked for it. Any Argentinian could say that. Honestly, I haven't heard anything like that.

You are the goalkeeper. Don't you think outfield players want to have some fun with the ball so it doesn't fly over their heads?

Lukasz Skorupski: Points. Result. That's the most important thing for me.

Maybe you don't get tired, but such Piotr Zieliński for sure.

Lukasz Skorupski: Ha, ha. Well, I think he was struggling in Qatar. He played somewhere on the right or left side. We used "Zielu" wrong, and he has such skills.

What is the problem?

Łukasz Skorupski: See how he plays for Napoli. You pass him the ball, he has three players on his back and he won't lose it.

Why can't this be applied to the national team? Not only with Michniewicz, it was there before.

Lukasz Skorupski: I don't know. I think the defenders and the goalkeeper also have to play well.

We don't have players so weak to play so badly.

Łukasz Skorupski: Well, no, I think the same. It'll be all right.

With Santos?

Lukasz Skorupski: I don't know him. I mean I know him as a coach, but I don't know what the style will be.

He said defense is the most important thing.

Łukasz Skorupski: Do you know what Allegri was saying? You know what Chiellini and Bonucci were talking about? That the Italian championship is won by those who concede the fewest goals.

In the national team, you got in touch with Jacek Góralski. You have a similar past.

Łukasz Skorupski: Maybe he has even worse.

Downtown. Bydgoszcz.

Lukasz Skorupski: Oh Jesus. We talked about it. He told me a lot, had a few actions.

Did you like each other right away?

Lukasz Skorupski: Right away. "Góral" is direct. Fucking great dude.

Dude, buddy or friend?

Lukasz Skorupski: A friend. From the national team he and "Zielu". The best.

But with Piotr Zieliński, you are fire and water.

Łukasz Skorupski: We get along. He is also so…


Łukasz Skorupski: Not as much of a psycho as me, but a similar mentality.

What do you mean?

Łukasz Skorupski: Also such a fox, he had some actions when he was young.

I've seen his posts on the internet.

Lukasz Skorupski: Not that. Some fights, no fights. "Zielu" is fucking great. First of all, helpful, if you need something, it's right away. You know, he plays for Napoli, the Champions League and doesn't try to be a star at all.

In the movie "Transsiberian" one of the characters utters the phrase: "Do not kill my demons, because the angels will die too." What about your demons today?

Łukasz Skorupski: Sometimes they are… But I hide it well. In Italy they don't even know I'm like that.

Are you or have you been?

Lukasz Skorupski: I was. I don't want to go back to that life at all.

Do you control your demons?

Lukasz Skorupski: I control. I am 31 years old, I have a child, a wife. I play football professionally, for ten years in Serie A. I earn good money, damn. You know how it is. I can't be stupid anymore.

Do you think you're securing the future right now? Not only yours.

Łukasz Skorupski: I'll make a living from it, so I have to make the most of it. I have to. I can't play the clown, risk to go out or something. I'll tell you, I don't even want to anymore. See how cold it is in Bologna today.

Minus one.

Łukasz Skorupski: In such weather, when I was 20, I would put on a T-shirt, a leather jacket over it and go to the city.

Now you're constantly complaining that you're cold.

Łukasz Skorupski: You don't even want to leave the house. Do you understand how it all changes?

You said yourself you'd rather invite your friends over to your house than spend the night at a party.

Łukasz Skorupski: The family is there, the kid is here. Everything worked out well. And I really prefer the way we sat down yesterday - we talked, watched the match, drank a glass of wine. Why the fuck would I go somewhere. Everyone knows each other in Bologna, right.

I think even if they didn't know you, you wouldn't go out.

Łukasz Skorupski: Well, I don't want to anymore. I guess it's age, huh?

I already told you. We are getting older.

Łukasz Skorupski: When I think about what I did in Górnik… Parties until eight in the morning, and training at nine. The body has changed too. If I did that now, I'd be walking backwards for three days. No discos at all. I will go out with my wife to a restaurant for dinner, sit, talk and go home. Where should I go? Of course, I can afford more during the holidays, then you can make something.

I like the custom in Italian teams that you and your teammates go out for dinner every week.

Łukasz Skorupski: They have, We have such a custom in Italy.

In Empoli you went out on Wednesdays.

Łukasz Skorupski: And today Stefan Posch was punished for being late for training. We were already training and he came in after ten minutes. The day before we came back late from the match, he couldn't sleep, and in the morning he overslept. The punishment was to buy dinner for everyone. He paid today. It might have cost him a bit.

At least the team is connecting.

Lukasz Skorupski: Yes, yes. There's a punishment or something and a supper.

Did you pay fines in Bologna?

Łukasz Skorupski: It wasn't a punishment, but after signing a new contract with Bologna, I bought dinner for the whole team. I'm not getting fines now. I'm not late, never happened to me. Sorry, I came too late at Nawałka's (former Polish NT coach and Skorupski's coach in Górnik) once.

In Górnik or in the national team?

Łukasz Skorupski: In Górnik. Imagine that we went to a party after practically every game. Once we lost to Polonia Warszawa 0:4. I don't know if you remember this game.


Łukasz Skorupski: We lost and I say: "Fuck it, I'm not going anywhere". I didn't go and… I overslept. Dropping in for briefing, man... 10,000 fine from the coach.

He probably thought about Katowice at night.

Łukasz Skorupski: I didn't even say anything to him, I didn't explain myself. He wouldn't have believed it anyway. And that's the only time I haven't gone anywhere and I've missed my check-in. Jesus. That's how it stuck in my head that I've been vigilant ever since. Coach Nawałka used to look deep into your eyes. He greeted us, passed his hand and approached within five centimeters. Do you know why?

Did he want to emphasize his sincerity?

Łukasz Skorupski: He was getting closer like this, give me your hand, the left one, because my right one hurts. He brought his nose close to your face and sniffed. He knew some people were drinking.

Ha, ha.

Łukasz Skorupski: Well, I promise you.

I was told by the players of Świt Krzeszowice, the first club where Nawałka started as a coach, how he checked them to see if they had drunk anything. During the camps he visited them in their rooms. "What's up gentlemen?" How do you feel? - He was asking. "All right, coach," they replied. - Oh, I found some lint - he picked up a crumb from the carpet and carried it to the bin. He looked for beer caps.

Lukasz Skorupski: You see. With us, he would look at you and say, "Okay? Are you okay? Are you ready?" He knew that when there was a match, there could also be a party. He is sly. He wanted to introduce professionalism to Górnik. Because in order to achieve something with the team he had, he had to do it.

If you hadn't met Nawałka, would we be talking in Italy now?

Lukasz Skorupski: I don't think so. I'm afraid that I would not play in Italy and I would stay in Poland and play in Ekstraklasa. I had talent, but without the discipline and working us to the ground he unleashed in me, I wouldn't have excelled.

The perfect coach at that moment for someone as defiant as you?

Łukasz Skorupski: I was tough, I had it in me, because it's family with us. We don't cry, we don't feel sorry for ourselves. Something really serious had to happen to go to the doctor. If you cut something, it's no big deal. For them, it was such a shame to cry at the doctor's office because something hurt. We grit our teeth and say hello. That's my whole family. What, I also did not go to coach Nawałka with such trifles. It was so with him that if there was a foul in training and someone was lying down, he would approach with a clear message: "You get up or it's time to leave training". Really. He was still asking. "What, an ambulance?! An ambulance?! Are we calling an ambulance or are you getting up?" And suddenly everyone got up. "And yet it doesn't hurt," he triumphed.

Did he end pretending?

Łukasz Skorupski: Everyone in the team finished. You know, when there was a perfidious tackle, then the coach would get angry and admonish: "Too much." But some kind of slide, a sharp entry, without crying. And man, at one point, no one cried anymore. Everyone got up immediately and developed a character on it. We were fucking going and we rode this rhythm. We walked like soldiers. I really appreciate it. Thiago Motta in Bologna also has such a character. It's like, "Something hurts? Okay, then get off the field." He doesn't care if it's me or someone else. For him, the most important thing is who works in training.

Once I talked to the referees, they said that Górnik was the easiest to ref. Because the players did not pretend, they did not argue with the referees. There was a ban from the coach.

Łukasz Skorupski: The coach threatened that if we get a yellow card for talking, we will be punished immediately. I'll tell you he was right about that. He showed how important details and discipline are. He gave me my debut in Ekstraklasa in Wrocław with Śląsk together with Milik and Olkowski. I owe him a lot, he developed my character, he taught me discipline.

And hard work in training.

Łukasz Skorupski: He was famous for working hard.

Only four workouts a day.

Łukasz Skorupski: Just so you know that we really at the camps practiced three or four times a day. I remember the camp in Grodzisk Wielkopolski, where we started at six in the morning - oxygen, i.e. running. Honestly? I'll tell you, we complained, complained, and now I appreciate it. I'm in Italy and I'm not at all scared of their work here.

Thanks to working with Nawałka, was it easier for you to find yourself in Serie A?

Łukasz Skorupski: The approach I got to know thanks to him in Górnik, I met after coming to Italy. In my opinion, it has been abroad for a long time, but not yet in Poland at that time.

You said that you and Nawałka keep in touch and write text messages.

Łukasz Skorupski: Sometimes the coach will talk after the match. At the World Cup, he wrote to me in his style: "Congratulations, we keep fighting." When I defended against the Netherlands or Chile, he texted me that it was a good match.

You sent back longer responses to show him you'd changed. No "Thank you", but a few lines.

Łukasz Skorupski: I have to let him know that this is another Łukasz Skorupski. Because you know, I changed with him, I was a bit of a boor. I grew up with Górnik fans, we were all the same in Zaborze.

Were you rude?

Łukasz Skorupski: You know that, well... When I met Nawałka in Górnik, man, he also started teaching me such kindnesses. "Thank you, please, why don't you talk like that?" he pointed out. And so to all players, not just me. Thank the lady at the laundry. Thank the lady in the kitchen.

"Good morning" must be said.

Łukasz Skorupski: I didn't always say before. I will remember coach Nawałka well. In national team we talk about him a lot.
And what are you talking about?

Łukasz Skorupski: That "Nawala" was fucking awesome. Everyone knows that we worked hard and everything was arranged like in the army. But man... There was no money in Górnik, but he was able to arrange everything in such a way, to wind up the president of Zabrze that she paid us salaries every month. Because earlier in Górnik they paid once every six months. The coach came and we came to him to help with these payouts. He met with the president and they started paying monthly. We didn't have rarities, but some fruits appeared after training.

The fields had to be even.

Łukasz Skorupski: Bartek Spałek, our masseur, I remember that he took creatine, some other supplements, conditioners. Everything was coming in.

Was it Nawałka who introduced it?

Lukasz Skorupski: Yes! Earlier, come on, and he introduced such a greater professionalism - breakfasts in the club, dinners in the club. He was trying to put it all together. Although I remember, honestly, that sometimes we complained about it.

You called him Fidel.

Łukasz Skorupski: It was like that, we were exercising at the gym. He was looking one way and you did eight reps instead of ten. Right away he would be angry with you: "How much have you done?! Eight! Two more!". I don't know how he saw it, but he didn't miss a thing man, he saw it all. At one point, the team thought, "Well, there's no resisting and there's a ride. We're going this way." We didn't have any outstanding players, and we were standing well in the table, even in sixth place.

And many got promoted: you, Paweł Olkowski, Arek Milik.

Łukasz Skorupski: Each of us has gone abroad. It was so that when Nawałka started, I did not believe in such things at all. He brought Remek Rzepka to the club, I think he studied in America. And he introduced what the entire Ekstraklasa is doing now. And yet we are talking about what happened ten years ago in Poland. They were the first to introduce rollovers.

How did you react?

Łukasz Skorupski: I did it, but with the thought - what the fuck is this? Shall I roll some muscles? Some rubber, extra work? Give me the ball and the games. And they began to notice that motor skills are improving, that injuries are prevented. In Górnik, everyone had to be at the gym half an hour before training.

And you are doing it in Bologna now.

Łukasz Skorupski: It's normal abroad. In Poland, it came with coach Nawałka. You know how it was in Ekstraklasa. Earlier, probably with coach Wieczorek... Although I don't remember. Okay, never mind. I was already playing in the first team, and I would arrive at the club at 10:50. Five minutes to get changed and at 11 I left for training. End of training, bath and departure.

This would not work for Nawałka.

Łukasz Skorupski: You had to be in his locker room 45 minutes before training. Let me tell you, I really appreciate it now. The best coach I had in Poland. I always talked when I was playing for Górnik that coach Nawałka should join the national team. He's gonna make all these rules, damn it. And you see - he did some result.

Quarterfinals of the European Championship.

Łukasz Skorupski: Damn, well... But let me tell you that at the national team it was a bit different. Lighter.

At the first team training camp in Grodzisk Wielkopolski there was also a similar drill, only the players told him to let it go.

Łukasz Skorupski: I wasn't there yet. He was so much more laid back after that. And you can't go like that during training sessions with the national team, because you play two matches a week. You come prepared from the club, you work on tactics without great strength and so on, because the match is coming soon. This is what it looks like in the national team. More could be done when it was EURO, where we had two weeks of preparation. Now at the World Cup, we didn't live in training either. All the time tactics and matches. But, you know, you've been in form because you're coming mid-season.

I always remember Coach Nawałka well. I don't know how he did it, because there was poverty in Górnik, but at some point we had everything I said - nutrients, some fruit after training. We were paid our salaries every month. We went to Zakopane for the camp. Oh Jesus. We stayed in one of the best hotels. And what the fuck, how much we ran. But let me tell you - I have respect for the fact that he developed such a character for me.

A lot of coaches could kick you out of the club for "Lorneta and Medusa", where you fought with other customers and trashed the place.

Łukasz Skorupski: Well fuck, that's why I'm telling you. He gave me a second chance, he did a great job. After it happened, I had a meeting with him at the club. I entered the coach room without knocking. I sat down on the sofa right away, I remember that. The coach looked at me strangely: "What are you doing?! Get up, leave and come back like a normal person." So I went out, this time I knocked. I sat down and told him everything how it was.

How did he react?

Łukasz Skorupski: Nice, because he said that he also did stupid things in his youth. It happens to young people, you know you have to go crazy. The most important thing for him was not to do it again. And I didn't repeat it. I didn't play in the first match after this action, but in the next round I was again in the lineup. I had a good season, my best in Ekstraklasa. Because you know, damn, I wanted to repay him a little.

Well, but he gave up on your brother.

Łukasz Skorupski: Not him, but club's board.

Michał was after a serious injury and trained as a guest with the first team of Górnik. He had a chance to stay.

Lukasz Skorupski: Exactly. He was injured, he did not have a contract with Górnik, but he could train with us. We just did this action in "Lorneta and Meduza" and they thanked him right away.

As the first.

Łukasz Skorupski: Earlier there was an idea to offer him a contract. I got a penalty, Olo Kwiek got a penalty, Adam Danch got a penalty.

How did the 20-year-old, promising player in Ekstraklasa felt arrested?

Łukasz Skorupski: Four of us were in arrest - me, Adam Danch, Olek Kwiek and my brother. Each in a different cell. And man, what's going on down there? You sit and sleep with a break for food.

Although good?

Łukasz Skorupski: A piece of bread and tea in a metal mug. Jesus. The worst days of my life. I promise you. The worst three days of my life! I had everything ruffled, you're lying in the same clothes. Nor bathe, only pee somewhere next to people.

Who were you sitting with?

Łukasz Skorupski: With a guy who sold drugs to someone else who died. You understand?

With a dealer.

Lukasz Skorupski: Yes. Life is like that. I don't know how in Italy they will read it and ask: what the...? Even though it was ten years ago, write that it was ten years ago.

You had a black eye then.

Łukasz Skorupski: We sat in the same clothes and waited for them to take us out. We left after three days. We were pulled out by the late Krzysiu Maj with Bartek Laburda. Before that, there was also a sobering-up room. You go, you strip down to your panties and you sleep like that. Just so you know, because there are some psychos... They take their belts off, everything. You are lying on a mattress on the ground, and the worst thing is that there are twenty people in the room and there is no toilet.

How did Matilde react to all this when you told her what you were like?

Łukasz Skorupski: Well, she was in shock. But she also knows that I have changed. Also thanks to her. She appreciates that I was able to leave Zaborze and take care of myself, and you know what a difference it makes.


Łukasz Skorupski: Man, no... Compared to my life in Poland, it's a gulf. She appreciates that I was able to adapt to another. This in Italy. You know how they live here, you've seen it - coffee, cappuccino. Although there is also crime in Italy.

You, for example, were robbed in Bologna.

Łukasz Skorupski: Sometimes when I think about it, it still makes me furious. We lived on the ground floor in an apartment with a garden. I was playing at home against Napoli, Matilde left the house half an hour after kick-off. They had to watch her. After the match with my young and "Zielu" we still kicked the ball in the gym at the stadium. Leo knows his uncle, likes him. Everything's fine, we go home, and there's like a bomb went off. Everything is broken, lying on the ground. I felt fucking bad.

Matylda was in Zaborze?

Lukasz Skorupski: She was.

Did she like it?

Łukasz Skorupski: These were our beginnings, and you know how it is in a relationship - deeply in love, you won't say anything bad. Today, as she recalls that visit, she admits that she was shocked.

What shocked her the most?

Łukasz Skorupski: That Silesia is still so gray. And she's from Sardinia. For her, the strangest thing was that every block in Zaborze is the same. Only the number changes. She shook her head: "All the blocks are the same. Only the hospitals are different, and there is no difference." And what, well, I took her to Auschwitz, I remember. She insisted on going there. For Italians, this is a moving story, they take the history of the concentration camps seriously. She wanted to see, so we went. Today, when Matilde is in Poland, we mainly visit my family in the countryside. We will also go there this June.


Łukasz Skorupski: To my mother. It's a village, 50 kilometers from Brodnica. It takes an hour and a half to get to Toruń. Lakes, we have a boat, fish, bonfires in the evenings. It's fucking great there. Matilde likes it too, she loves nature. Boy, we're walking somewhere in the fields, and she raves about the cows. She's in love with animals, right. Cows, chickens, it doesn't matter.

The whole family from mother and father - cousins, aunts - lives there. They all live 15 kilometers next to each other. One family from mom, the other from dad. Here is one village, here is another, and there was a disco between them. My parents met there. Later, my father went to Silesia to work in a mine, and my mother with him.

Your dad wasn't interested in football.

Łukasz Skorupski: He was from the countryside, he had nothing to do with football. He didn't play it at all. The old man was a boxer. You know, he trained himself and boxed himself.

Did he go to your games?

Lukasz Skorupski: No. Rarely. I don't blame him. I never wanted to be daddy's boy. When I was young, he used to come to a game.

And when have you already played in Ekstraklasa?

Łukasz Skorupski: I don't think he came to Ekstraklasa even once. My old man wasn't a Górnik. He watched on TV.

When I started training in Zaborze when I was young, I jumped over the fence and was already on the pitch. Nobody had to see me off. When I was ten years old, times were different, I would get on a tram and drive an hour to training. Two transfers from Zaborze and you had to walk there too.

You were ten years old and you were already driving alone?

Łukasz Skorupski: We traveled from Zaborze in two or three. We had a training group where parents of other coaches licked ass, and I was always alone. I don't blame the old man for not coming. I know he worked hard and had to rest after the mine. Those who had more money, some business of their own, could come to their son whenever they wanted. They were sucking up to the coaches, giving gifts so that only the kid would play. I was the only one who didn't care about it. I was fucking great keeper in the youngsters and the coach loved me. His name is Jerzy Urban. Write it, write it, he will be happy. Sometimes we text each other. He treated me fairly even though I came without my parents and I didn't suck up to anyone. I was good and that was it, and he let me play. Other parents were furious: "Why doesn't my son play, I bought shirts for the team." The coach liked me so much that he would take me home after training and drink tea with the old ones.

Two years older brother, Michał, also played football.

Łukasz Skorupski: I think that as a goalkeeper I feel so good and agile because I had a different childhood. I would go outside with the boys and jump from tree to tree, doing some flips in the bushes. And train to add to that. Mom would let us out at nine o'clock in the morning, we would come back at 11 pm, when she was screaming from the window: "Come home!". That's how I grew up, huh.

I would never trade my childhood for anything. I went crazy. Jesus, you went to the lake, no matter if the water was warm or cold. When I was young, I spent my summers in the countryside. We drove tractors, I went to work to pick strawberries or potatoes.

Did they pay well?

Łukasz Skorupski: Tenner in an hour. We earned about 50pln a day. In the evening we met at the fire station and played a match, and at the end a shop and ice cream. The next day the same. Oh, I slept in the barn too.

Idyllic, carefree.

Łukasz Skorupski: Like in the countryside. It was a little different in the city. Although I played football everywhere - in the countryside and in the city.
submitted by Bartoni17 to soccer [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 11:22 Curious_Nebula_808 Morocco in May! 2 week itinerary help?

Hi! I've been solo traveling before, but it was more long term and open ended, so I'm struggling a bit with a shorter itinery. The current plan is:
Arrive 11pm on a Saturday night (not negotiable, it's by far the best flight deal I found) in Marakesk.
Either a) 4 nights (3 days) or b) 5 nights (4 days) in Marakesk. Things I want to do: mostly wander! See some jardins, art! Screen printing artists?, Take a cooking class, just generally enjoy the atmosphere.
3 day tour from marakesk to fez via the Sahara. I've been told it's a tourist gimmick, but I really want to ride a camel in the Sahara and stay in a desert tent. There's a part of me that wants to diy - rent a motorcycle, get all the way out there, book my own camel ride camp.... But looking into it, group tours seem the most cost effective (and my French is not great, light conversational only, so I worry that I'll not understand road signage).
A) 3 nights in Fez. 2 in chefchauon (bus to Casablanca and fly out the last day) A-2) 2 nights in Fez, 2 in chef. 1 in Casablanca
B) 2 nights in Fez, 2 in chef., Bus to Casablanca and fly out last day.
So schedule wise, arriving at 11pm M6 regardless:
A) M6-10, marakesk. M10-13 tour to fez via Sahara. M13-M16, fez. M16-M18, chef. M18, bus to Casablanca and fly out that evening.
A2) M6-10, marakesk. M10-13 tour to fez via Sahara. M13-M15, fez. M15-M17, chef. M17-18, Casablanca fly out 18 eve.
B) M6-11, marakesk. M11-14 tour to fez via Sahara. M14-M16, fez. M16-M18, chef. M18, bus to Casablanca and fly out that evening.
Overall, aside from really wanting the Marakesk to fez tour, and to take one cooking class. I'd like to soak in the ambiance, enjoy the tunes of unfamiliar languages, wander a mix of old school markets and modern shopping centers (because I find it cool how similar and different malls are around the world), eat all the things, marvel at mosaics and gardens... I guess I'm saying that rather then packing in sights and activities, I like to enjoy being in a place.
So.... Any advice, suggestions on itinerary, know a cheap but awesome tour company that let's singles join from marakesk to fez? Know a great cooking class?
submitted by Curious_Nebula_808 to solotravel [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 11:07 Edward-Oakley The other two chapters of my submission

Chapter Three: Too Big to Fail?
Amelia and Noele raced towards Dunwich at breakneck speeds and arrived only minutes after their departure from Longbarrow.
Amelia put down Noele, who looked a little green in her face. At least she hadn’t started to scream. Some adventures did that, even A-ranks. Especially A-ranks.
As they walked through the gate a man in the coat of arms of Dunwich stepped forth, seemingly a city guard. Instead of a sword he carried a clipboard.
“Halt. For entreance you first need to pay headtax. Three copper per person.”
Amelia fished her adventurers badge out of her pocket and showed it the guardsman. “No we don’t. We are members of the adventurers guild:”
The guard shook his head. “Yeah, new law from city hall. Adventurers are no longer exempt from head tax. In fact, have you fought any monsters in the wilds?”
Noele glanced at Amelia. “I think you might have clipped a griffin on the way here.”
The guard nodded and scribbeled something down on his clipboard. “That means we have to add a small tax for that. All ressources around the city, including monsters, belong to the city after all.”
“But we didn’t even kill it.”, exclaimed Noele.
“Ah. That adds a charge animal cruelty. There is a fine for that.” The guard added another note to his clipboard. “Also, did you happen to travel on the road?”
Amelia thought about that for a moment. She had mostly stuck to low jumps just over the foliage, but they had landed on the street occassionally.
“Yeah, briefly.”
“Ah, bad news then. That road is privatly owned now, so that adds a small
Amelia rolled her eyes at this insanity. “All of these taxes and fines, are these recent additions? Proposed by some oversized lizard in a suit?”
“You mean Mr. Goldentooth? Yes, that oversized lizard has spearheaded a great deal of reforms. Has even taken office in the city hall. By the way, lizard-calling is a serious misdemeanor. There is a fine for that.”
“But you just called him a lizard too?
“Have I?”, asked the guard.
“Alright, how about you let us through and I won’t tell anybody.”
The guard gave Amelia a stern look.”Are you attempting to blackmail a member of the city watch?”
“If that is was it takes for you to let us through that blasted gate, then yes.”, Amelia said flatly.
The watchman frowned at her. “There is a fine for that. Five silver.”
Amelia sighed. “All of this is ridiculous.”
“You see, Miss. I am just doing my job here. If you have problems with the city’s tax or law code, then you have to file a complaint at the city hall and not annoy overworked guards.”
Amelia gave the guard a flat look. “And how do we logde a complaint at your city hall, when you don’t let us in?
The guard blinked “Hm. I guess I see your point.”
“So you let us in? We just want to logde a complaint.”
“But you haven’t paid your headtax, your adventuring tax, the street toll and the fines for animal cruelty and lizard-calling . I can’t let you through this gate like this.”
Noele grasped her coinpurse in resignation: “How much is it in total then?”
“Altogether that would be 16 gold and 3 silver coins. Per person, of course. Though I would advice to make it an even 20 gold pieces by purchasing the premium city pass. That’s a real bargain by the way, and would allow you to skip the wait time and fast track the organisational stuff.”
Amelia wasn’t from this world and had already amassed a small fortune. The bounty for the Miststorm riders alone would pay the fees and fines for both of them more than 50 times over. Still she balked at the price. This was her retirement fund after all. She also wouldn’t force her student to pay for her. That would be unbecoming of her, as she was Noele’s mentor.
She gave the golden-eyed fool one last glance. For just a moment she thought about giving him the Leander-treatment and literally bash some sense in that guys head. Instead she did the mature and adult thing and picked Noele by her belt. Noele groaned. She knew what would happen. Amelia flexed her calves and handily leaped over the 20 meter wall.
The guard blinked in surprise for a moment. Then he yelled: “You are in breach of the airborne transportation act! THERE. IS. A. FINE. FOR. THAT!”
Business was doing good. No, even better. Business was doing great. Gildroy gazed fondly at the enormous crates and chests, all filled with beautifully shining gold.
There was a sudden crashing sound, like wood breaking. Gildroy instantly stood up. Had one of the unpaid interns dropped a chest with money again?
He sprinted from the vault into the main room. There he saw Amelia and Noele, standing atop the splintered door.
“Ahem. Hello. The door was mahagony. Kinda pricy to replace. Please use the doornob the next time.”, he scolded
Amelia had an angry scowl on her face. “You owe me two silver and a new window.
Oh. Gildroy had already forgotten about that. Two pieces of silver.
“Oh. I forgot. My bad.”, said Gildroy. He drew his purse and pulled out a few coins. “Here you go:”
Amelia pocketed the money. “Also you are going to stop this insanity you have going on here. Give everyone their money back and I’ll let you live:”
Gildroy blinked in surprise. “You can’t be sirious, right?”
Amelia put a hand on her sword. “I am.”
Gildroy shook his head.”Never.”
Amelia smiled. “I had hoped for that. I wanted to punch you inyour lizard-visage since I met you.”
Gildroy scowled, What a barbarian.
Noele put a hand on her master’s shoulder. “Please let me have this fight. You told me, that only by challenging myself further I can grow truly strong.”
Amelia rolled her eyes. “Alright. He’s yours. Maybe this fight pushes you to S-rank.”
Gildroy shook his head. Such gall, but Norah had been much the same.
“Well, I did promise a spar.”, he said, as he armed himself with a purse filled with platinum coins.
[Nobleflame Armor]”
Golden flames coated Norah, forming into a brestplate. Very fashionable, but gold was always fashinable.
Gildroy countered with his own armor skill[ Armor of Gold] . As if carried by invible hands coins floated from the vault towards the drakling, on whom they arranged themselves like a secondary set of scales.
“Go on, you have the first strike”, he said as he picked a platinum coin from his purse.
And strike she did. Noele teleported behind him and swung her sword at him.
[Elegant Noble Slash] and [Unending Dauntless Fury]” she yelled, as she descendet into a flurry of blows.
Gildroy flicked a platinum coin. It disappeard and time slowed down to a crawl. He walked out of her attack, then the flow of time resumed.
Noele stared at the empty spot she hit repeatedly. “How? She muttered.”
“Would you kindly hurry up with your attack?”, asked Gildroy a little giddy. These fights were always fun! “[Time is Money], after all.”
[Unending Dauntless Fury] “
[Time is Money]
Noele hit nothing again.
“Noele, he can’t attack while he stops time.”, Amelia told her student.
“Besides, it is more of a potent time-slow. A hard hitting area-of-effect attack will still hit”.
Gildroy scowled at her. “Hey, the best part of any fight is to figure out how the enemie’s skills work. How will she learn anything if you take that away from her.”
Noele tried to go for a cheap shot while he talked. A quick flick of a coin brought Gildroy to safety.
“Well, now it is time for me to strike back, it would seem.”
Gildroy barreled into her. Noele stood her ground, defending with her sword. “[Titans’s Strength]”, she yelled.
Gildroy pushed back with his own strength skill. “[Gold is Strength]”, he barked. For a moment they seemed equally matched, claw against sword, but then Gildroy gained the upper hand. An A-ranked skill just couldn’t compete with an S-ranked skill.
Noele was launched through the air and impacted the wall. Gildroy flicked another platinum and time slowed for him. He dashed towards her and delivered a crushing blow just as the time-slow ended. Noele was thrown back again, this time through the wall and into the main plaza of Dunwich.
Noele quickly found back to er feet. “Big area-of-effect spells, huh? For that I have something. [Golrious Noble Slash]
All of a sudden her sword increased in size manyfold, and she swung it a Gildroy with ferocity.
Gildroy knew, he could not dodge this one with his time-slow, but tried anyways. His golden armor cracked under the barrage of blows and he flew back, towards a crowd of people.
Amelia moved with extreme speed and dragged multiple peole out of the line of fire. Luckily, because far too many people here had purchase [Life Insurance] from him. Should they come to harm…. he’d be ruined.
Oh dear. If he took another hit like that he’d lose his status as an hexillionaire.
Gildroy felt his control over his customers slipping. Quickly he summond up a bit of [Investor]-Widom to once again tighten his grip: ”People, the market has just taken a hit. That is normal. That just happens. Your savings are not in danger, in fact with the stocks low right now is the best time to invest.”
“That skill surely is something. Good, almost S-rank”, Gildroy praised.
“It would be a same if some one would steal it: [Buyout]: Purchase the skill Elegant Noble Slash.” The drakling burned hundreds of platinum coins activating that skill.
A system message apperared in front of Noele’s eyes
[Gildroy Goldentooth has acquired the skill Noble Slash]
Noele’s jaw went slack. Her sword of light and flames disappeared and reappeared in Gildroys hands.
“Beautiful skill”, Gildroy said with a shit-eating grin. “And just my color.”
And with that he started to whail on Noele. She tried to dodge his clumsy swings, but at some point one hit. Her armor of flames buckled under the blows, but still held strong.
“What can I still do?”, Noele screamed in panic. “I don’t have my skill anymore. I can’t do this?”
Amelia snorted. “You lost one skill. You still have the rest. Change them. Combine them. Make them better. Make them yours.”
“Make them mine”; Noele whipered. She close her eyes. “Make them better like with my elegant noble slash.”
When she opened her eyes again, Gildroy saw that ther gaze no longer contained fear, only cold determination.
Gildroy noted how her stance and entire aura shifted.
And Noele unleashed her newest skill
[Unending Dauntless Grand Blaze]”, Noele screamed.
She launched a great fireball and then dozens more.
The first fireball Gildroy batted away with his sword of golden light.
The second fireball he doged.
The third fireball hit Gildroy but was blocked by his armor.
The seventh fireball broke his [Armor of Gold]
And Gildroy screamed like a feral animal.
And the barrage continued for minutes.
Gildroy was of course unhurt by the spell. Burning a dragon? About as sound a strategy as drowning a fish or killing a bird by tossing it down a mountain.
No, what hurt him was the collateral damage! Noele had hit not only him but also multiple buildings with her fireballs, absolutely demolishing them. Buildings he owned! Luckily her teacher had stepped in and carried the people still inside them to safety. But still…. so much money lost.
In his fury he roared. Using the smoke as cover he dashed toward Noele, who was obviously exhausted. She failed to even use her fancy teleportation spell, as Gildroy grabbed her by the neck. He then slammed her headfirst into the pavement. Once, twice. Then he tossed her away, through one of still standing walls.
Gildroy glanced on the burned ruin in front of him. He took a deep breath. This wasn’t as bad as it looked, he knew that. The tenants had been tardy on their morgage-payments anyhow.
He’d just demand the full repayment of the damages from the tenants and then he would also cash in the insurance. Then he would use that money to rebuild. He would gentrify the entire block and then he’d demand double, no triple the original price.
He saw how Noele fought to stand back up. She even picked a potion out from her pocket and downed it. Foolish. The fight was over, and even a little bit of replenished magic wouldn’t change anything.
“Girl, stop it. You did well, very well, but you lost.”
Instead of listening to Gildroy’s words, the girl went for one last, all out attack. Silly. Gildroy pulled out another platinum coin from his pouch, at least tried to.
Gildroy glanced downward. While he hadn’t been wounded by the barrage of fireballs, it had ripped the pouch of coins from his belt. And without platinum coins there was no time slow. No protection.
He felt a deep, stinging pain. He tasted iron on his gums.
The blade was lodged deeply into his chest, piercing his heart and his lungs.
“Oh.”, Gildroy weezed.
“Well done”, he said with his last bit of air.
Noele ripped the sword out of his body and Gildroy fell over.
And in these last few moments of his life Gildroy heard something.
The call of an ancient god of death. Of decay. Of oblivion.
He heard the call of the void.
Gildroy opened his eyes and saw a broken world. Enormous rocks flew about, one such he was standing on. Stars glittered in the far darkness of this terrible place.
A towering mass of dark purple flesh with hundred of tentacles sprawled over several such floating isles. The enormous body was mostly covered in shadows, yet the few glances were enough to cause Gildroy a massive headache and burnt themselves into his memories and left a marks that would last for the rest of his existance.
He tried not to look at the massive creature, but that was difficult as it so big, that it was both to the front, the left and the right of Gildroy.
“Your mortal flesh is failing you.”, the eldritch beast rumbled from a thousand mouths. “Swear yourself to my cause and you will be saved! You will be granted unlimited power, an...”
“No thanks”
Hundreds of eyes blinked in surprise.
“You are aware, that you are dying?”
Gildroy took a look a look of his blood- and sootstained suit. The shirt had been his last and had been made from the silk of a king tarantula. Very pricey and very difficult to clean. Probably ruined for good. Oh well, sometimes you incur unforseen losses.
“I want you to know two very basic things about me, my dear: First of all, my soul is not for sale. At least not for a vague promise of unlimited power. No, if I were to put a price on my soul, it would be hard cash only.”
“Secondly” Gildroy’s lips drew back into a manic smile. “I always plan ahead. Far ahead.”
His grin bloomed into a full on mad laugh.
“My death was always part of the plan.”
Noele stood victorous. She had beaten an S-ranked threat, alone and almost witthout any help from her master. Did that mean she was an S-rank adventurer now?
Then [Dance with Death] stopped it’s effect, recognizing that her fight was over. Tiredness slammed into her body like the mallet of a yeti. She fell to her knees, then flat to the ground.
She used the lat bit of her strength and raised her head and looked at Amelia. Goodness, she was tired. She expected a proud nod, or even a few kind words from her master. Yet Amelia’s gaze was hard, and her body tense, as she looked at the cooling corpse of Gildroy. Slowly her mentor drew her sword.
Then Noele heard a sound. The sound of metal against cobblestone. Then another plink.
Then another.
And another.
And another.
Noele saw how a gold coin fell down from somewhere up in the sky. And then a silver coin, and some platinum after that. Then Noele saw a message from the world system.
[Gildroy Goldentooth used the skill: Life Insurance]
The rain of coins picked up, gold coins falling in an endless cascade from the skies. A small hill was already forming around the body.
Ameila took a single step, crossing the entire distance to her pupil and lifted her up. Another leap took them to the roof of one of the undamaged buildings, where she laid down Noele.
Meanwhile the entrance to the city hall was entombed by an avalance of silver, the fires in the burning ruins were buried in gold, drowning the fires.
On top of this mountain of treasures now stood a figure wreathed in golden scales and golden wings, his eyes burning with the blue flame of undeath.
“You fools!”, Gildroy roard. “Do you think I didn’t buy shares in that liches phylactery?”
Noele eyes burned and not only from the smoke lingering in the area. So she had failed… not only herself but also her sister.
“Master, shouldn’t you stop him? Please, I am too weak.” Noele hated how feeble and pathetic her voice sounded.
“Not yet. The rain hasn’t stopped yet, and that lizard did a lot of damage,”, Amelia said while crouching down next to her. “You did well, though this opponent is frankly above you.”
With that she one again leaped and landed in front of the ecstatic drakling.
“Ha! You cannot face me! Nobody can! I am the richest dragon to ever walk Vacuos!”, Gildroy bellowed. “[Buyout]”, he barked. “System: Kill Amelia.
Nothing happened. Gildroy looked at the System Message in front of him and his eyes bulged.
“How much does that cost me? That many zeros?”
“Alright.”, Gildroy exclaimed. “System: Stun Amelia:
Once again nothing happened, aside from a new message appearing.
“Still that much. Oh dear.” Gildroy suddenly sobered up.
“You are quite strong, aren’t you?”, he feebly asked.
“Yeah. Kinda.” Amelia glanced up. The golden rain slowly let up. There must be tens of millions of coins laying about.
“Well. I seem to have micalculated. Is it too late to apologize? Forgive and forget?”
One last platinum coin fell from the sky and skidded over a mountain of gold.
“Too late.”, Amelia said, and her blade descended.
There we are. 10 minutes before the deadline. Not even close.
Now time for a nap. Running on caffeine and 2 hourse of sleep. Who could have known that writing takes time and effort.
Oh, also a little prologe. Noele fell down the roog, knocked her head really bad. Forgot her new skill combo. Such a klutz.
submitted by Edward-Oakley to AmeliaTLZHNovel [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 10:47 ThrowRA546236 I 26M am desperate will lose a 21F incredible connection

Hello people of Reddit, is my first post here but I read a lot of relates here. I'm not a native English speaker so forgive my errors.
I 26m, went to a mall one day to buy some cologne for me, and I saw the most beautiful girl I ever seen in my life she was working in the cologne store. When our eyes met I felt a instantaneous connection with her. She 21f came to talk to me and helped me to choose my cologne, she smiled a lot, and I felt she was flirting with me. So I got a paper and a pen and discreetly gave my number to her, she accepted and in that day she texted me. I was very happy, it worked, I never did that before, but I felt she was worth. We talked for like 4 hours straight, asked her Instagram but she said doesn't have it, this was a little bit strange but I accepted, then she said her phone was dying, I said it's okay we talk tomorrow.
Next day I was blocked in her Whatsapp, I didn't understood anything because I didn't said anything wrong. Couple weeks later I went again to the same mall (my city just have one mall), and I saw her again working there. I didn't want to looks a creep so I didn't did anything, but she saw me there. Everytime I went to this mall we saw each other, but I didn't want to bother her and tried to do my stuff, this keep happening for like 2 months. One of these days I said hi when I passed in front the store, she startled a little but said Hi back. This day she texted me asking me what I was doing there, I said I was just eating something. She asked if I could stay close her store because was winter and she was bored without any clients. I accepted of course. I stayed stand for like 5 hours talking to her, she said found me cute the first time saw me, then I asked why she blocked me, and she said was her boyfriend, but she wants to leave him because he don't respect her and stuff... We kept talking until the mall closes, then I offered her a ride because she used to takes a bus home every night at midnight. She refuses because her boyfriend will not like this, I accepted this and went home.
Then everytime I went to the mall I was seeing her and staying for hours talking to her we kept doing this for a couple of weeks, one day she said they had a argue and talked about breaking, I tried to give her advices to fix her relationship, but she doesn't want to because was tired of him. In this day she accepted my ride home and gave me some hints about cheat on him with me, I said no and left her home. I was liking her but I don't want to be part of a cheat. Then I gave her like 4-5 rides home when I went to the mall, but we never even hugged, just talked about everything, relationships, energies, connection, life, movies. I was very happy, I was feeling a huge connection with her, her smile makes me happy. I wanted her to finish her relationship, but I always said the opposite to try to fix everything with him. One day, she texted me saying she had broke with him, but she will move to another country to be with her family, because she was living with him and didn't had anywhere to go, I didn't want to appear desperate, and acted cool being supportive. In that day I went to the mall but after, instead to go to her house, we came to my house. We had s*x, the connection was awesome, our energy, was the most enjoyable experience in my whole life. Never had a so good intercourse even in my previous long term relationships.
Asked her to sleep here, but she refuses, I respect and took her home.
We kept talking she always saying how I was important to her, and how she loved to be with me. She said things like visit her when I could, and she will do this too when come to here again. We live in Europe so everything is pretty close and cheap to travel.
She left the country. It was painful. But we kept talking how we still like each other and wanted to be together one day, but not now because of her recently broke. I that moment I realized I was in love with her. And told her that, she said the same, she was in love with me aswell. I felt blissful. She was everything I ever wanted in a girl, but the most important was our energy connection. And we kept talking for like 2 weeks how we miss each other and wanted to be together. She bought plane tickets to came here to see me one month from now. In that moment I was so happy because everything was so perfect, sometimes we told each other about the fear to trust some one like that, but I dedicated her my heart and was very clear about my feelings to her. She always said how she liked me and wanted to take care of me. For sometimes we slept in phone call, I sang to her sleep, told her fairytales story to help with her anxiety to sleep.
Then, 1 week after she bought the tickets, her ex bf called her and begged to come back, she felt really bad and said he said very bad things to her. She asked me to stay by her side and never abandon her, so I did. I was 100% supportive all the time, clear with my feelings, said everything with very caution to be very clear. She said was in love with me and never want to come back to him.
1 week later she was very different from her usual talking to me, taking 3 hours to answer, answering short phrases, ignoring some things. I knew what's was going on, but was very polite and asked her if we have a problem. She said yes, and said her ex called her again saying how he misses her, and how he loves her. She said she will use her plane tickets to see him instead of me, and said: "we have to stop this we are having, you are very important to me but I have to do this, I have to do this to be sure about him, even if I have to sacrifice you in the process"
Guys. My world ruined. I felt so fucking bad. I don't desire this feeling to anyone. Now she will be here in town in a week and we even talk anymore. My question is? What I do? I fell in love other times but I never felt this energetic connection before. There's some details I skipped in this story to short it a little but I can answer any questions in the comments, please help me I'm not being able to sleep, eat or work anymore. I know she already gave up on me, but I have to give up this energy? This is so fucking rare. I already cried a lot. I'm really desperate.
I will update this after she cames to town and tell you if something changed.
submitted by ThrowRA546236 to relationship_advice [link] [comments]

2023.03.21 10:40 Banned12Ever Voting: The Greater of the Two Evils

It is a time of great pain and sadness as they see how the kuffar attribute one of the most important Names and Attributes of Allah (swt), that of al-Hakam al-Adl (the Divine Just Ruler).
However, the greater pain is caused because people who call themselves Muslims and attribute themselves to the Muslim Ummah are participating in these events, choosing, canvassing and even arguing with others who claim to be Muslim about which Kafir they should give their vote to so that they may take a legislative role and thereby rule and judge by Kufr (non-Islam).
Initially, those involved in such activities, i.e. secularists did not care what Islam said on thismatter. The likes of the apostate (murtadd) Ahmed Khanzir, the MP Mr Shahid Malik and Baroness Uddin all attained their positions through canvassing the so-called Muslim vote, claiming that they would represent the Muslim viewpoint when they gained their seats. However, their lies, false promises and anti-Islamic, pro-Kufr (disbelief) policies were manifest for all to see in particular when the labour backbenchers rebelled against Tony Blair in the build up to the war on Iraq yet not a single voice of dissent came from these so-called integrated "Muslims" within his party! Maybe these Muslim parliamentarians judged there silence to be of a "lesser evil" than their speaking out against the terrorist Blair regime.
However, a more manifest attack against the Islamic 'Aqeedah and the Tawheed (oneness)of Allah (swt) is taking place in that so-called Muslim scholars and institutions are nowcalling other Muslims to vote for and choose Kuffar (disbelievers) to come into power, citingexamples such as the story of Yusuf (as) and the principles of the "lesser of two evils" tofurther their cases whilst trying to cloak their actions of Shirk by wearing the garments ofIslamic Shariah in an attempt to look and appear legitimate in the eyes of the Muslims. Thisshort article hopes to present some of the Islamic evidences dealing with the issue of votingand whether the Muslims residing in the UK or elsewhere are allowed to participate in suchactivities.
The Purpose of Mankind
Before one deals with the secondary matters of mankind's actions, one must remember thevery purpose why mankind has been created. By knowing our purpose, we will becomecognisant of our cause and what our actions should be. Allah (swt) has said,"I have not created the jinns and men but to worship Me." [EMQ 51:56]

The Arguments of the Deviants

Unfortunately, even some "scholars" (like Saleh Al-Munajjid of Saudi Arabia, Haitham Haddad of Al-Muntada and Abu Eesa Niamatullah of Islamic Awakening) have fallen into this trap, willingly or unwilling, and are encouraging Muslims to vote for one Kafir or another to come into power, legislate (which is the Right of Allah (swt) alone) by Kufr and conduct treaties on the Muslim's behalf! Despite the fact that in all their articles they state that legislation is the exclusive right of Allah (swt) and that it is haram to vote for a kafir normally, to defend their position they cite the need to be"wise", understand the deep and complex reality we are living in (Fiqh al Waaqiah) and to try and derive as much benefit (masalih) and prevent as much harm as we can.
Al-Hamdulilah that Allah (swt) has risen these type of people when Umar bin al-Khattab(ra) was not around! Do you not know the story of the Munaafiq who had a dispute with a Jew regarding the harvest of the fruits from a tree? When he came to Umar bin al-Khattab(ra) for judgment disregarding the judgement of Allah (swt) and his Messenger (saw), and Umar (ra) responded by killing him.
And the situation here seeking another verdict from Umar (RA) who is a Muslim, after the Prophet (SAW) has given his verdict. Today the situation is much more severe as it takes this a step further by seeking the hukm of secular democracy which is completely at odds with Islam!
"And who ever seeks a way other than submission to God (i.e. Islam), it will not be accepted from him, and he will be a loser in the world to come." [EMQ 3:85]
Lesser of the two evils
The main argument that these ilk-of scholars cite is the ‘Lesser of two evils’ and the principal that the Shari'ah was revealed, ‘For Muslims to derive all benefits and prevent all harms.’The fact that these principals are found quoted by some great Islamic authorities is not the point of contention. The truth of the matter is that these scholars misuse their application.For example, they say that in Shari'ah if one were found all alone in the desert and withoutfood, the Shar'iah permit's the Muslim to eat from unslaughtered meat to save one's life.unslaughtered meat being obviously normally haram (prohibited). Then they cite the lesser of two evils, the greater evil being to die, and the lesser one to live albeit by eating unslaughtered meat thus committing a sin. Somehow, from this example they draw the parallel that we have to vote for a Kafir in the Kufr system we are residing in because of 'lesser of two evils'. Since when does the principle of the lesser of the two evils apply when both options are acts of shirk? Especially when the premise that we have to vote for someone is false!
Firstly, the issue of being stranded in the desert at risk of losing one's life and eating the haram meat is one of life and death and necessity (duroorah). And even in this situation the Muslim can only eat enough meat such that he is able to recover from his ills. What is said ofthe one who then having sufficed his basic organic needs, he then were to go ahead andfeast on the unslaughtered meat (such as Pork) such that he began to enjoy it and begins to invite other Muslims to feast with him!!! Obviously it would be said that he is committing an evil! As regards to applying this principal to voting and committing Shirk there is no parallel or analogy (qiyas). Who is threatening to kill us if we do not vote?
If we do not vote we still will live after the elections, Insha’Allah.
So where are the two evils such that one can chose the lesser? There is only the action to vote which is haram or evil, and the other choice not to vote, which is obligatory. At the same time, we can see that the "lesser evil" is based on an arrogant certainty about the consequences of the choice of the lesser evil winning or working out as one might have hoped. In fact, those so-called Muslims who voted for the Labour party and Tony Blair in the 1997 and subsequent elections as the lesser evil found that they acted quite differently once in power.
Gordon Brown, David Cameron and any other candidate will be no different. As well, the "lesser evil" concept (applied wrongly) weakens the Muslims belief in Islam as a complete and comprehensive Deen with solutions to all of mankind's problems (wherever we are on this earth). If the people who attribute themselves to Islam consistently feel obliged to vote for candidates in whom they do not believe and this principle is continually used to justify further integration into Kufr society, many who claim to be Muslim will end up feeling that Islam does not have all the solutions to man's problems- if every time people who attribute themselves to Islam adopt the Kufr solution! Some may even reject the Deen completely, not even claiming to be Muslim anymore. (Even though the one who participates in voting is not a Muslim)
Another common feature of those so-called Muslims who do opt for the 'lesser evil' and votein Kufr elections is that often this 'lesser evil' is not regarded as an evil but as a correct alternative. By these practices being present in the Kufr societies in the West, it has gained a sense of legitimacy among the people who attribute themselves to Islam.
If a person is facing any criminal charge, for example theft or fraud, he would not flaunt it in public. However we find these evils mentioned so openly and discussed without any hesitancy amongst those so-called Muslims in charge of the Kufr political parties and Masjid commitees. We find these 'lesser evils' mentioned so openly, one wonders if it is even regarded as wrong.
The lesser evils of today were the major evils of yesterday and so on and so forth until we eventually lose all of our Islamic thoughts concepts and ideas and become no different than the kuffar. One shudders when one thinks what the lesser evils of tomorrow would be.
As Muslims, we are so fortunate that our Sharî'ah has been perfected and protected. Let us not legitimise our evils as the West has done. If we are unable to uphold the standard that Islam set, we should regretfully acknowledge our shortcomings as such and not regard our wrongs as acceptable or even waajib (obligatory) as some deviant scholars have claimed.
Secondly, with regards to the issue of Shari'ah being for the benefit of Muslims, do theyforget that the Shar'iah is what has been revealed to the Prophet (saw) via the Qur'an or hisacitons, sayings and consent i.e. the Sunnah and not by what their own mind, 'Aqel orHawaa.
Allah (swt) says.“Have they not heard the ayah in the Qur'an when Allah (swt) says,
"Maybe you dislike something and this is actually of benefit for you? And maybe you would like something and it is actually an evil for you. Allah (swt) alone knows and you do not know (however much 'Aql or wisdom you may profess to have)" [EMQ 2:216]
Allah (swt) did not allow the excuse of all these much greater "tangible benefits" and interests to be used to neglect the obligatory deeds and we know that we have been ordered in these duties to do as much as we can. However, with regards to the Haram deeds, we have been ordered to leave it completely. How then can one use the arguments of benefits? With regards to the benefits they believe they will bring and the harms they may prevent they list them as follows; to prevent the BNP from coming into power, to prevent the aggressive war policies which kill innocent Muslims around the world, to promote those Kuffar who believe in truth who will give a good image for Islam e.g. the Respect Party of George Galloway etc. These are the classic arguments of those who have already decided to participate in a non Islamic system.
In order to justify their actions, they will cite benefit for Islam and Muslims as a legitimate evidence to partake in a non-Islamic system. If we were to examine the general (aam) and detailed (khaas) evidences we find that benefit is defined as that thing or action the Shari’ah permits us to benefit from. Hence benefit (maslaha) is defined by Islam, not by our own weak and limited mind.
Firstly, when was the Kufr of George Galloway and his "Respect Party" (respect same-sex marriage, respect the pornographer, respect the sale of alcohol, respect the gambling, respectthe freemixing etc.) worse or even better than the Kufr of the BNP? Did Allah (swt) not teachus about the types of people this Kuffar (including Jews and Christians), the Munafiq and the Muslim / Mu'min to which one of these belongs George Galloway? The answer, as George affirmed that he is a kafir and that he is not going to become Muslim. Allah (swt) warns the Muslims from taking these people as awliyaa (friends, protectors, supporters, people in charge over you),
"O you who believe! do not take for intimate friends from among others than your ownpeople; they do not fall short of inflicting loss upon you; they love what distresses you;vehement hatred has already appeared from out of their mouths, and what their breastsconceal is greater still; indeed, We have made the communications clear to you, if you willunderstand. Lo! you are they who will love them while they do not love you, and youbelieve in the Book (in) the whole of it; and when they meet you they say: We believe, andwhen they are alone, they bite the ends of their fingers in rage against you. Say: Die in yourrage; surely Allah knows what is in the breasts." [EMQ 3:118-119]
Allah (swt) also says,"O you who believe! do not take for guardians those who take your religion for a mockeryand a joke, from among those who were given the Book before you and the unbelievers; andbe careful of (your duty to) Allah if you are believers." [EMQ 5:57]
And in another place in the Qur'an,
"You will see many of them befriending those who disbelieve; certainly evil is that which their souls have sent before for them, that Allah became displeased with them and in chastisement shall they abide. And had they believed in Allah and the prophet and whatwas revealed to him, they would not have taken them for friends but! Most of them are transgressors." [EMQ 5:80-81]
Allah (swt) has clearly and explicitly forbidden the Muslim from ever allying with the Kuffar, seeking their help or allowing them in authority over us. So how then can we go out and canvass for them?
Will George Galloway rule by the Shari'ah or he will rule by his own desires and by Kufr? The answer is that he will rule by kufr. How then can one justify choosing him to come into power.
Regarding the BNP, apparently these scholars using their ration come to the conclusion that if the Muslims do not vote in these elections, then the BNP will come into power!
Unfortunately for them, the history of the Muslims testifies otherwise - the Muslims have been in the UK for the past forty to fifty years; How is it that the BNP have stayed out? Why suddenly this year the BNP may gain support and have a landslide victory and become the ruling party?! Who are the famous political commentators that profess this view anyway?
The fact of the matter is, the more the British public see the so-called Muslims occupying positions such as in parliament, on television and this concept of multi-culturalism takes hold, themore the support for the BNP will rise. The more visible so-called Muslims become, the more the resentment will grow from the indigenous population. So where now is the argument of those claiming to propagate the concept of preventing harm? Besides, the BNP up until now have had no political might nor power and have not had the opportunity to really cause any harm upon the Muslims; whereas the Conservatives and the Labour party have been in power during the bombing of Muslims in Iraq - the first and second Gulf Wars and during the timeof the biting sanctions when millions of Muslims in Iraq were killed, and currently when thel aunch of the war against Islam announced its first victims with relation to the thousands killed in Afghanistan. Is this not harming to the Muslims? Is it really worth selling your deen and your brothers abroad so that you can safeguard your measly salaries?
With regards to preventing the aggressive foreign policy; well this is a simple fantasy int hose people's minds and shows how bereft their understanding is in relation to the British and European parliamentary systems. What can Mr Galloway do? What benefit can Mr Galloway bring the Muslims? In fact he is only going to bring benefit to himself by furthering his fame and fortune on the back of Muslims apostasies. As Allah (swt) has warned:
"They desire that you should disbelieve as they have disbelieved, so that you might be (all)alike; therefore take not from among them friends..." [EMQ 4:89]
We find that these shallow and false political arguments and deceptive analyses are more often than not put forward as a primary source of evidence by the likes of MPAC and the MCB's of this world, who with the open support of the British government (morally and financially) are trying their level best to deceive the Muslim Ummah into voting by provoking their survival instinct and their need for security. This shameless call for a perceived interest or some hidden political agenda by committing the so-called Muslim vote is prohibited in Islam categorically for Allah (swt) says:"Say: Allah never commands what is shameful: do you say of Allah what you know not"[EMQ 7:28]
(Article: Voting: The Greater of the Two Evils - Anon)
submitted by Banned12Ever to Aslu_Din_Al_Islam [link] [comments]