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READ ME: Part 3

2020.09.21 21:21 blackfridayswitch13 READ ME: Part 3


READ ME: Part 1
READ ME: Part 2
It was a few days of me relaxing just taking in the mellow mood that our Cecily- turned sea creature left me with her musical talents. Cecily also gifted me with a relaxing feeling.
It helped my anxiety in a way I can’t explain. I fed Doby, the fish I confiscated from the magical book, and bought him a new tank for my kitchen. I think he was another gift from Cecily. I was just happy I was able to put her soul to rest.
I spent all that Saturday setting up the sea salt tank fit with plants. Typically, it took time to set up a tank, but I didn’t exactly have time to do that with Doby. I even got him a few companions to keep him company.
Then a few days later, as I was feeding Doby admiring the new purple and turquoise blue decor, I felt a sudden need to cut my wrist. I felt like I was in a trance.
I walked over to the kitchen, opening the drawer pulling out a sharp knife, I began slicing my arm. I didn’t bleed much, but I had this overwhelming, depressing feeling coming over me. Then I heard my television pop on all by itself.
There was a news story about a young girl about sixteen years old that had gone missing. The report was dated three years ago. I knew then it was the book. Dropping the knife, I ran to get a paper towel and some alcohol to clean the wound I created.
I heard guns firing lasers, and I saw a blue light illuminating from the book. I took a big gulp; what was I getting myself into?
I opened the book to THE MURDER SHOW, which was the next story I was to read, and took a deep breath. I looked down and could see a tiny television featuring two teenagers playing a video game in a room. It was like I was watching a movie. One of them had short bleach blonde hair, the other had long black hair, and I recognized her as the missing teenage girl from the news that had just been featured on my television.
Instead of reading this story, I was watching it. I was hearing her voice inside of my mind, or maybe it was out loud. I couldn’t tell anymore.
I looked at the pages before me. They were turning on their own like an old fashioned picture book. I watched a girl as her eyes turned and faced me.
She had black hair, dark eyes, and pale skin. She had a black t-shirt on with a ton of bracelets. Her thin face was pretty, but she didn’t smile.
Instead, I could do nothing except listen to the story titled:
THE MURDER SHOW
My name is Andrea Becker, and as long as I could remember, I wanted to die.
I know it sounds strange, but I looked at death as that permanent nostalgic return to your soul.
I swear I’m not a freak. I know I look the part, don’t get me wrong. I am cliche for someone my age.
Let me begin by telling you how it all began.
When I was ten years old, my grandparents were visiting from out of town. My grandmother was taking a shower, and when she got out, she screamed for my mother as she was having chest pains. She fell over onto the bathroom floor. The EMT’s were there in record time; maybe it was slow- I just know it was all a blur. I watched them trying to bring my grandmother back. My grandpa wasn’t home; he had gone shopping with my dad and older brother. So, I had a front-row to the tragic end of a woman I had loved so much.
Then I knew the exact moment she died. I saw her ghost or her soul, whatever you believe. It floated out of her body, and it LOOKED at me! My grandmother’s spirit looked at me and smiled. I knew then everything would be fine, but it wasn’t about me. It was about how at peace she was. I longed for that peace.
I lost my grandpa a few years later, but my grandmother’s death stuck with me. I started reading everything in the end. I knew it wasn’t simple science like some claim. You do leave your body when you die. Where you go is anyone’s guess, I just know what I saw that day my grandma died.
I had never considered killing myself. That was too weird. Then one day, my best friend, Carla, told me she liked to cut herself. She showed me her scars on her wrists. I was taken back by her self-harm.
“What if you go too deep?” I asked her.
“I have a couple of times, but I have gotten good at stitching myself up,” she smirked.
“Doesn’t it hurt?” I asked her.
“Yeah, but sometimes it is the only way I can feel things. I just feel like the world gets to be too much sometimes, and I want to escape it. I just don’t want to die.”
That is when I looked at her. “I have always wanted to die,” I said tears in my eyes.
“What you mean, like kill yourself?”
“No, just be at peace.”
“I feel at peace after I feel that rush. Like I get a rush from the pain for a second, and it makes me less - I dunno how to explain it.”
“I get it,” I said, and my friend had become my best friend.
I never told her, but I started self-harming after that. I had to know if it would give me the peace that I longed for when my grandmother showed me that look in her eyes. Like AT LAST, she could rest!
Sadly, over the next few years, Carla and I stopped being so close. She started hanging with a posh stuck up crowd. I still craved death. There was little in common with the mean girls' squad.
At seventeen, I had become close friends with a guy named Paul, whom I had a lot in common. We both enjoyed Mr. Fraziers English class, played tons of video games, and enjoyed hacking.
Not like professional hacking, just silly stuff like the local website to our local pizza shop. We hacked into it to say that all the prices had been reduced to 99cents. Silly kid stuff. We were never caught.
Then one day, Paul came over with two of his laptops.
“I have to show you something.” He said to me, excitedly.
“You ever been on the dark web?”
I shook my head. “No way!”
“It isn’t all weirdos; I buy stupid shit on there like electronics. Lots of black market stuff. It isn’t all organs and creepers doing things to people.”
“You aren’t messing with those sites, are you?” I asked him, concerned.
“No, I just found one, though. I can’t tell if they are serious. It’s called THE MURDER SHOW.”
“What the hell, Paul?”
“No, I have everything blocked. They can’t find us. I wanted you to see these comments. It freaked me out.”
“You are on the DARK WEB PAUL!” I retorted.
“Listen, just look at this. Can this be real?”
I hesitated and then took his laptop and looked at the site. It was a chat room.
I read a few of the posts they talked about murder and the best way to do it. Then I read on.
Der786: YOU READY, RANDY? One poster asked.
RANDY01: YEAH JUST DON’T HURT ME TOO MUCH. Another user name responded.
Der786: YOU GET THAT INSURANCE FILLED OUT?
RANDY01: MY WIFE WILL NEVER WANT FOR ANYTHING EVER AGAIN.
What the hell?
Paul grabbed the laptop. “They let themselves be murdered for entertainment.”
“On purpose?”
“Yeah, one guy had cancer and didn’t want to live anymore. It even says on the disclaimer that this is the Doctor Kavorkian of murder sites. It is all pity kills. They won’t do it to healthy, happy, or well-adjusted humans. You must prove you are worthy, and they will do the cleanup, so no one ever finds out.”
“It is real. Turn it off, Paul.”
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to freak you out. I just thought you would think it was at least interesting.”
“It is scary and unfortunate if I’m honest.”
Paul’s cell phone rang.
“Sorry, mom, yes, I forgot. I’m with Andrea. I’m coming.”
I looked at Paul, and he ran out and left.
He was gone, and so I continued playing a new video game that I had bought with my allowance.
I wasn’t paying any attention when I heard someone say, “I see you.”
Huh? I said to myself.
“You there! Girl with the black hair!”
What the hell? Then I realized that Paul had left his stupid laptop on the floor of my bedroom, and it was still on that silly murder site!
I peeked over my bed and looked down at the laptop, and just as I was about to close it, a man spoke again.
“Don’t close it yet; you had to come here for a reason. Why don’t you tell me what brought you here.”
“I- I didn’t. My friend found it by accident, and we weren’t interested in the site.”
“That is okay, so you were curious. Can I answer any of your questions?”
This was getting too weird for me.
“I am good. I think I get it.”
“Look, I get it. It’s real live dark web shit. I’d want to close the laptop and burn it too. Only I have seen you. How do you know I haven’t already tracked your address? How do you know I am not using facial recognition to figure out exactly who you are, Andrea Becker.”
He said my name. How did he know my name?
I was going to kill Paul.
I picked up the laptop and looked at the man who didn’t look like your typical weirdo. He was sitting at a desk wearing a polo shirt. He had a friendly smile and kind eyes. Suddenly I felt comforted instead of creeped out, and I didn’t know what it was.
“My name is Milton. I founded this site to let people let out a little bit of carnal steam. Tell me about yourself.”
“This is weird. I don’t know you.”
“Okay, I’ll begin. I’m married. I am a father of two kids. Jessica and Jenna. I work in management. This is just a side thing. I can assure you I am every bit as human as you are. So tell me, why do you wish to die, Andrea Becker?”
At that moment, it was like he had spoken to my heart. No one had ever spoken so honestly to me before. It was like having someone see your soul. At that moment, I thought, this is fate.
“Peace.”
I found myself speaking honestly, and even if I regretted it later, I couldn’t help it. It was nice to see that someone could read my mind. At least it felt like that.
“I think most of us who are empathic to the ways of the world feel the same way you do.”
“Yeah, I guess.” I sat up straight and leaned into the screen on my laptop.
I was beginning to feel much more comfortable than I had thought I ever would. It was strange to trust someone on the dark web like this, but there was something about this man. He had a hold over me.
“Tell you what, we are holding an event tonight at eleven, and I hope you will log on to join us to see what we are all about. I promise it isn’t what you think.”
“I will have to check it out,” I said, partially wondering if I wanted to have anything more to do with this man.
The screen went black, and I shut Paul’s laptop.
I decided to go downstairs to grab a wine cooler out of the fridge. It was almost ten o’clock, and my parents were asleep, so I knew I wouldn’t get in trouble.
I drank the crappy drink, thinking long and hard about what had transpired and wondering if I wanted to know what went on in this so-called murder show.
It was five till eleven, and my cowardice was in full force, so I turned on the television.
“A WHITE VAN IS THE SUSPECT IN THE MISSING TEEN’S DISAPPEARANCE IN FRANKLIN COUNTY. WITNESSES SAY THEY SAW YOUNG JAMES MADISON TALKING TO SOMEONE DRESSED AS A CLOWN AS HE WAS ON HIS WAY TO SCHOOL FRIDAY MORNING…”
I turned off the disturbing news program deciding I would see the big deal with this “murder show.” There could not possibly be any reason for this nice man I had talked to be part of some sympathy murder thing.
The screen was still black, and then I saw a small room come into focus. The chat room was coming alive with flower emojis, and last-minute thank yous and best wishes from viewers who were donating bitcoin to the website’s owner.
Then I saw a man sitting in a chair and typing away at his computer. Something oddly terrifying about it was because the viewers seemed to see it, but the man didn’t seem to have anything to do with the viewers as though he didn’t even know he was being watched.
I watched as some of the viewers suddenly were also aware of this fact.
RHONDA24: Do you think he even knows this is the last night on earth?
Davtelly45: Nope, that is how it works.
RHONDA24: I know, but I thought he would be more prepared. He has been with us so long here.
Davtelly45: He will die soon, but he will be better off.
RHONDA24: No more cheating wife, no more debt, and no more anxiety about what tomorrow will bring.
Sassy-maria: I’m so happy for him.
Davtelly45: Me too, girl.
IVANfist: I hope this one is bloody, though. I like them with a little bit of gore.
RHONDA24: I have to admit I do too. Maybe he will get slashed on the throat.
Davtelly45: I just want our boy to be happy.
IVANfist: Fuck that gore all the way!
I read the chat, and then I watched as the man sitting at his computer seemed to be working on something very intensely. That is when I heard what sounded like a doorbell ring. The man everyone was watching got up, and walked away. I guessed to answer the door.
Then I heard the sound of someone yelling. A man with a black mask on was soon dragging the man who had just been sitting at the computer into his office.
“No, I have changed my mind! Please, I don't’ want to-”
His throat was slashed in front of the computer. The slash was so deep it nearly decapitated the man who was only moments ago typing away at his laptop.
I gasped, watching the scene unfold before me. Then the chat room exploded.
RHONDA24: Bye, Randy. We will miss you.
UNKNOWN: no, we won’t.
Davtelly45: SO long, Randy. I hope you can now be at peace.
UNKNOWN: Randy will never be at peace now. Hope he rots in hell.
Davtelly45: WHo is this?
RHONDA24: I will miss Randy, but anything will be better than dealing with a cheating wife, too much debt, and not knowing what tomorrow will bring. I long for my day to rest.
UNKNOWN: You should just put yourself out of your misery.
Davtelly45: Seriously, what the hell? Guy, this is pretty insensitive. We are celebrating the life and death of a warrior.
There was some strange interference, and I shut off the laptop, unplugging it.
I texted Paul to get his stupid laptop, and he told me he would be over tomorrow to get it.
I was sick to my stomach.
Had a real-life murder just taken place?
I knew without a shadow of a doubt it had.
I was paralyzed with fear and yet oddly jealous. I secretly wished I would be able to feel that peace that Randy felt. It terrified me, though, to no end.
\***************
I woke up the next morning and prepared for school. I had strange dreams of the people on the computer screen. I had dreams of them talking about me the way they had Randy.
I was sweating when I got out of bed, and I readied myself for school and what the new day would bring.
Paul came over after school to get his laptop, and I made sure I didn’t mention what happened the night before. I just wanted that website out of my life.
Paul seemed unphased by the fact I had his laptop. He had a few, so what was one going missing?
Following that incident, I stayed off my computer as much as possible. Then I had to log onto my own laptop to finish a school project about two weeks later.
When I logged into my email, there were many messages from a person that called themselves FALCON.
“Andrea Becker, this is FALCON, Milton wanted me to let you know that he knows you logged on to watch Randy transition, and he wanted to see how you were since viewing our little show.”
I deleted the messages. I didn’t want anything to do with these weird people.
As I had this thought, I got an instant message from MILTON.
Milton: Andrea, I am sorry you seem alarmed by Randy’s transition. Tell me, how did that make you feel? It is okay to feel scared, terrified, sad, angry, or all of the above.
I looked at what he was typing, and that same sweet consoling man made my guard go down. I would have asked him how he got my email, but I already knew that if it were easy for them to get my name, how much harder would it be to get my email?
Milton: Andrea?
Me: Hello, Milton. I don’t know how I feel about what I saw. I don’t think I want anything to do with this.
Milton: Andrea, talk to me.
Me: I don’t know what to say. You killed a man.
Milton: Yes, but he wanted it. We helped him transition. We can help you.
I looked at what he was saying. I had wanted so badly to feel at peace and lose all of my earthly worries, but this was too much too fast.
Me: I have to go to Milton.
Milton: Andrea Becker, reconsider. You don’t have to participate, but we are people that understand you. I read your online diary, your poetry, and I know what you wish for.
I was stunned and felt violated. How did they hack into my online diary? It was private thoughts on my blog site I never made public. I was terrified, and then Milton said something else that made me reconsider.
Milton: I have seen your interactions with others. We have watched you interact with your friends. We know it wasn’t you that initially found our website. We don’t care. We welcome you. We only ask that you keep our little secret to help others like yourself, and like Randy.
I don’t know what made me do it. I began to trust Milton. For the first time in my life, I didn’t feel weird about my feelings on death. These people seemed to understand.
Me: I feel so weird talking about it.
Milton: It is hard to acknowledge your feelings at first, but once you do, you will begin to understand.
Me: Are there others like Randy?
Milton: We try not to allow too many transitions at once. We give people time to mourn in our community after someone transitions. We have another coming up at the end of the month. This person has yet to be named.”
Me: How does it work?
Milton: We take a vote on who is next. Once the vote is in, the nominee gets contacted through a congratulations email to give them time to tie up loose ends. Then they are not told the day or time of their death. We feel that it would ruin the transition.
Me: What if they change their mind?
Milton: They are given no way to back out. It is in our clause. If you are on track for transition, which I feel you are, just being a part of our community is an agreement. You have already witnessed a transition - an illegal act. So you have already agreed to the clause.
Me: What about you?
Milton: What about me?
ME: Can you transition?
Milton: I will in time. My agreement was after my children will be old enough to understand. Once they are, then I will join others like Randy and you.
“Oh,” I typed
Milton: I have to go now; it was nice chatting with you. Remember, if you ever need someone to talk to, we are here. We understand how you feel.
He logged off the chat, and I sat in front of the chat. Then another name popped up.
RHONDA24: Hello, Andrea.
I didn’t respond right away.
RHONDA24: I just want to let you know if you ever need a friend. I am not much older than you, and I get how you feel. You can reach out to me.
Me: Thank you. I have to go now.
RHONDA24: Have a great evening, Andrea.
I logged off the computer.
#############
As time wore on, I realized that I enjoyed the community. I had made a few friends within the community. I had several bad days in the last month; one of them was that I had a falling out with Paul. He was angry with me for spending time online in the “transition” community as I had learned to refer to it as.
The community helped me overcome some of my anxieties, so I didn’t think so much about dying anymore. If anything, I wanted to live because I felt relieved that I now had a group that understood how I felt. After all, they felt the same way as me.
Then the day came out of nowhere. I was planning my graduation speech, as I had been elected by Mr. Frazier to give my class a short address. I typed, re-typing, and over-editing everything I was writing when I got a ding on my computer.
My email popped up, and I recognized the email address. It was from FALCON.
CONGRATULATIONS ANDREA BECKER YOUR COUNTDOWN TO TRANSITION BEGINS 5-4-3-2- NOW.
I gulped reading the email because I didn’t feel the way I had before. I didn’t want to panic. This had to be a mistake. I was no longer depressed; I had things to live for now. Why had they voted on me transitioning?
I saw that Milton was online.
ME: Milton? I think you made a mistake. I am the least qualified to transition. Especially that now I feel so much better!
Crickets could have chirped from the computer. Instead of responding as Milton had hundreds of times before, he ignored me and logged off.
This was a nightmare. I stood up, looking around my room.
Indeed, I’d have time to graduate. I was at the disadvantage of being home alone. My parents were at some Union banquet because my father was on the teamster's board. I got up from my computer desk and locked all of the doors and secured the doors.
I turned on the radio to think. There was a story on the radio about a White Van and how another child had been missing. Another witness saw someone dressed as a clown talking to the child.
Ugh! Not something I needed to know to hear right now. I flipped the station to some soft music. Sarah Mclachlan came on, so I left it. I needed to think. I logged into the chat, and I could see all the congratulations Andrea comments in the chat.
ME: Hey guys, I think there is a mistake.
RHONDA24: Congratulations, Andrea!
DAVTELLY45: I hope you have the best transition.
UNKNOWN: I hope you bleed into the camera for daddy.
ME: WHAT?
Who would say such a thing?
UNKNOWN: I can’t wait to cut you from ear to ear.
RHONDA24: DUDE! Get out of here!
I got a private chat request from Rhonda24.
I accepted it.
Rhonda24: Don’t sweat it, Andrea. The guy is some weirdo that has been harassing a bunch of us. We can’t block him. He has this crazy firewall system. Just please know how happy I am for you and how much I will miss you.
I couldn’t think of anything else to say.
I was about to log off when there was a bang from outside my house.
Before I could do anything, a stranger wearing a black mask burst through my bedroom door. I stood in pure terror and shock.
It was happening now!
I did the only thing I could think of and grabbed the desk chair in front of me, and flung it at the stranger.
He was tall, thin, and didn’t seem to have been prepared for my sudden means of survival.
He lurched forward and grabbed me by the throat. I could feel his large hands trying to suffocate me. I looked over to the computer and saw it had popped back on - all on its own accord. A red light flashed on the screen. I realized I was being recorded for someone’s amusement.
The darkness engulfed me in this very moment, and I sprung up, kicking the man in the groin.
He growled in pain, and for a moment, I had time to run but not for long before the man stood up and shut my bedroom door so I had no means of escape.
He pulled out a knife from behind him, and I looked around my room to find something else I could defend myself with. I saw a coffee mug, grabbing it and throwing it at his head. To my luck, he stopped to rub his head, and I barreled past him towards the door.
Then I was caught off guard by a swiping of the knife to the back of my leg, causing me to scream in pain.
I hit the ground, and he went for my throat with the knife. I rolled over quickly, causing him to stab the floor instead of me.
I kicked him in the head this time as he struggled to get the knife out of the wooden floor. He fell to the ground, and for a moment, we both worked with the knife. Finally, I managed to grab it and stab him inside the chest.
The struggle was over. Someone had transitioned tonight, but it wasn’t me. It wasn’t going to be me. I had far too much to live for. I took a deep breath and then took off the mask of the man.
To my utter despair, it was Paul. How had Paul gotten involved with trying to kill me?
It all made perfect sense now how they all had known so much about me. Still, Paul had been my best friend for years. I ran downstairs to find my cell phone and call for 911.
The dispatcher said they would be sending for someone as soon as possible.
I saw a large white truck coming towards my house, barreling down my street. I jumped into the road, flagging them down.
There was something strange about the truck. I realized when the headlights were no longer blinding my vision that it wasn’t the ambulance. I backed up onto the sidewalk and continued to look down the street for the ambulance. The truck did something strange, though. They stopped in front of me back up, so my view down the road was blocked.
A door to the back of the truck opened up.
There were two tall men dressed as clowns. One had blue hair and a red nose with what looked like blood around his mouth and dirty teeth. He grinned big at me. The other had on a red and yellow wig with green makeup. He looked more sinister than the other clown.
They stood looking at me, and then circus music began to play. I was annoyed by whatever joke they were trying to play, especially at a time like this. I could hear the ambulance now as it was making its way down my street. I tried to walk around the two stupid clowns. It was all so ridiculous to me.
That is when one of them grabbed me. I screamed for them to let me go! I had to help Paul! Then the other one helped get me by the legs. Before I knew it, I was no longer breathing.
I, Andrea Becker, died that night. I won’t bore you with the details. It was gruesome, and it was horrid. I have been missing for three years. I hope someone can see my story and relay what happened to me.
I’d like my parents to be able to have peace. We all deserve some peace.
I saw the book close on its own then. There were tears in my eyes as I read the last words of Andrea Becker.
I wasn’t sure how I could help, but I went over to my computer. There were numerous reports on the sightings of clowns in connection to missing children. I decided to search for the area combining missing person cases from around the region. I didn’t know how I was suddenly able to hack into systems using multiple databases, but I was doing it. For Andrea Becker’s sake, I was doing it.
That is when I found something very crucial. There were several sightings recently in my neighborhood. There were also six missing persons in a five-mile vicinity. I clicked, I typed, and I searched until I put the connections together. In all of the disappeared persons, there were three bodies found. One was of a seventeen-year-old female.
I knew without a shadow of a doubt that it would be the remains of Andrea Becker’s young body. I forwarded the information to the detective working the case. How had they not put it together on their own, I had no idea. I did now have gifts now that helped me help those who could not help themselves.
Later that night, there was a break in three of the missing person cases. No thanks to me. I was tired after Andrea Becker’s story.
That book never rests, though. Last night in the middle of the night, I heard music coming from somewhere.
It woke me from a dead sleep. I decided to find out what the matter was. It sounded like circus music.
I walked into my living room, and parked in front of my house was a white van with clowns in the driver's seat. I stared at them for a long while and then opened my front door.
Two maniacal clowns got out of the back, and as they slowly made their way towards my house, I let out a deep breath. Then I yelled.
I was using my new found thunderous gift their windows to the van all burst. They both held on to their ears as though they were in pain. I had no doubt why they were here.
I heard someone yell, “HELP ME, PLEASE!” It was a woman.
I became momentarily distracted by the sound of wailing behind me. Sad, painful wailing.
I looked away from the clown van towards the READ ME book on my couch. When I looked back toward the street, the van with the clowns was now long gone. I would see to it they were punished, but until then, I had other pressing business.
I picked up the book, and inside it, I read the chapter to the next story.
I was the Youngest Member of the Lunatic Asylum...
submitted by blackfridayswitch13 to DrCreepensVault [link] [comments]


2020.09.21 21:19 blackfridayswitch13 READ ME: Part 3

READ ME: Part 1
READ ME: Part 2
It was a few days of me relaxing just taking in the mellow mood that our Cecily- turned sea creature left me with her musical talents. Cecily also gifted me with a relaxing feeling.
It helped my anxiety in a way I can’t explain. I fed Doby, the fish I confiscated from the magical book, and bought him a new tank for my kitchen. I think he was another gift from Cecily. I was just happy I was able to put her soul to rest.
I spent all that Saturday setting up the sea salt tank fit with plants. Typically, it took time to set up a tank, but I didn’t exactly have time to do that with Doby. I even got him a few companions to keep him company.
Then a few days later, as I was feeding Doby admiring the new purple and turquoise blue decor, I felt a sudden need to cut my wrist. I felt like I was in a trance.
I walked over to the kitchen, opening the drawer pulling out a sharp knife, I began slicing my arm. I didn’t bleed much, but I had this overwhelming, depressing feeling coming over me. Then I heard my television pop on all by itself.
There was a news story about a young girl about sixteen years old that had gone missing. The report was dated three years ago. I knew then it was the book. Dropping the knife, I ran to get a paper towel and some alcohol to clean the wound I created.
I heard guns firing lasers, and I saw a blue light illuminating from the book. I took a big gulp; what was I getting myself into?
I opened the book to THE MURDER SHOW, which was the next story I was to read, and took a deep breath. I looked down and could see a tiny television featuring two teenagers playing a video game in a room. It was like I was watching a movie. One of them had short bleach blonde hair, the other had long black hair, and I recognized her as the missing teenage girl from the news that had just been featured on my television.
Instead of reading this story, I was watching it. I was hearing her voice inside of my mind, or maybe it was out loud. I couldn’t tell anymore.
I looked at the pages before me. They were turning on their own like an old fashioned picture book. I watched a girl as her eyes turned and faced me.
She had black hair, dark eyes, and pale skin. She had a black t-shirt on with a ton of bracelets. Her thin face was pretty, but she didn’t smile.
Instead, I could do nothing except listen to the story titled:
THE MURDER SHOW
My name is Andrea Becker, and as long as I could remember, I wanted to die.
I know it sounds strange, but I looked at death as that permanent nostalgic return to your soul.
I swear I’m not a freak. I know I look the part, don’t get me wrong. I am cliche for someone my age.
Let me begin by telling you how it all began.
When I was ten years old, my grandparents were visiting from out of town. My grandmother was taking a shower, and when she got out, she screamed for my mother as she was having chest pains. She fell over onto the bathroom floor. The EMT’s were there in record time; maybe it was slow- I just know it was all a blur. I watched them trying to bring my grandmother back. My grandpa wasn’t home; he had gone shopping with my dad and older brother. So, I had a front-row to the tragic end of a woman I had loved so much.
Then I knew the exact moment she died. I saw her ghost or her soul, whatever you believe. It floated out of her body, and it LOOKED at me! My grandmother’s spirit looked at me and smiled. I knew then everything would be fine, but it wasn’t about me. It was about how at peace she was. I longed for that peace.
I lost my grandpa a few years later, but my grandmother’s death stuck with me. I started reading everything in the end. I knew it wasn’t simple science like some claim. You do leave your body when you die. Where you go is anyone’s guess, I just know what I saw that day my grandma died.
I had never considered killing myself. That was too weird. Then one day, my best friend, Carla, told me she liked to cut herself. She showed me her scars on her wrists. I was taken back by her self-harm.
“What if you go too deep?” I asked her.
“I have a couple of times, but I have gotten good at stitching myself up,” she smirked.
“Doesn’t it hurt?” I asked her.
“Yeah, but sometimes it is the only way I can feel things. I just feel like the world gets to be too much sometimes, and I want to escape it. I just don’t want to die.”
That is when I looked at her. “I have always wanted to die,” I said tears in my eyes.
“What you mean, like kill yourself?”
“No, just be at peace.”
“I feel at peace after I feel that rush. Like I get a rush from the pain for a second, and it makes me less - I dunno how to explain it.”
“I get it,” I said, and my friend had become my best friend.
I never told her, but I started self-harming after that. I had to know if it would give me the peace that I longed for when my grandmother showed me that look in her eyes. Like AT LAST, she could rest!
Sadly, over the next few years, Carla and I stopped being so close. She started hanging with a posh stuck up crowd. I still craved death. There was little in common with the mean girls' squad.
At seventeen, I had become close friends with a guy named Paul, whom I had a lot in common. We both enjoyed Mr. Fraziers English class, played tons of video games, and enjoyed hacking.
Not like professional hacking, just silly stuff like the local website to our local pizza shop. We hacked into it to say that all the prices had been reduced to 99cents. Silly kid stuff. We were never caught.
Then one day, Paul came over with two of his laptops.
“I have to show you something.” He said to me, excitedly.
“You ever been on the dark web?”
I shook my head. “No way!”
“It isn’t all weirdos; I buy stupid shit on there like electronics. Lots of black market stuff. It isn’t all organs and creepers doing things to people.”
“You aren’t messing with those sites, are you?” I asked him, concerned.
“No, I just found one, though. I can’t tell if they are serious. It’s called THE MURDER SHOW.”
“What the hell, Paul?”
“No, I have everything blocked. They can’t find us. I wanted you to see these comments. It freaked me out.”
“You are on the DARK WEB PAUL!” I retorted.
“Listen, just look at this. Can this be real?”
I hesitated and then took his laptop and looked at the site. It was a chat room.
I read a few of the posts they talked about murder and the best way to do it. Then I read on.
Der786: YOU READY, RANDY? One poster asked.
RANDY01: YEAH JUST DON’T HURT ME TOO MUCH. Another user name responded.
Der786: YOU GET THAT INSURANCE FILLED OUT?
RANDY01: MY WIFE WILL NEVER WANT FOR ANYTHING EVER AGAIN.
What the hell?
Paul grabbed the laptop. “They let themselves be murdered for entertainment.”
“On purpose?”
“Yeah, one guy had cancer and didn’t want to live anymore. It even says on the disclaimer that this is the Doctor Kavorkian of murder sites. It is all pity kills. They won’t do it to healthy, happy, or well-adjusted humans. You must prove you are worthy, and they will do the cleanup, so no one ever finds out.”
“It is real. Turn it off, Paul.”
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to freak you out. I just thought you would think it was at least interesting.”
“It is scary and unfortunate if I’m honest.”
Paul’s cell phone rang.
“Sorry, mom, yes, I forgot. I’m with Andrea. I’m coming.”
I looked at Paul, and he ran out and left.
He was gone, and so I continued playing a new video game that I had bought with my allowance.
I wasn’t paying any attention when I heard someone say, “I see you.”
Huh? I said to myself.
“You there! Girl with the black hair!”
What the hell? Then I realized that Paul had left his stupid laptop on the floor of my bedroom, and it was still on that silly murder site!
I peeked over my bed and looked down at the laptop, and just as I was about to close it, a man spoke again.
“Don’t close it yet; you had to come here for a reason. Why don’t you tell me what brought you here.”
“I- I didn’t. My friend found it by accident, and we weren’t interested in the site.”
“That is okay, so you were curious. Can I answer any of your questions?”
This was getting too weird for me.
“I am good. I think I get it.”
“Look, I get it. It’s real live dark web shit. I’d want to close the laptop and burn it too. Only I have seen you. How do you know I haven’t already tracked your address? How do you know I am not using facial recognition to figure out exactly who you are, Andrea Becker.”
He said my name. How did he know my name?
I was going to kill Paul.
I picked up the laptop and looked at the man who didn’t look like your typical weirdo. He was sitting at a desk wearing a polo shirt. He had a friendly smile and kind eyes. Suddenly I felt comforted instead of creeped out, and I didn’t know what it was.
“My name is Milton. I founded this site to let people let out a little bit of carnal steam. Tell me about yourself.”
“This is weird. I don’t know you.”
“Okay, I’ll begin. I’m married. I am a father of two kids. Jessica and Jenna. I work in management. This is just a side thing. I can assure you I am every bit as human as you are. So tell me, why do you wish to die, Andrea Becker?”
At that moment, it was like he had spoken to my heart. No one had ever spoken so honestly to me before. It was like having someone see your soul. At that moment, I thought, this is fate.
“Peace.”
I found myself speaking honestly, and even if I regretted it later, I couldn’t help it. It was nice to see that someone could read my mind. At least it felt like that.
“I think most of us who are empathic to the ways of the world feel the same way you do.”
“Yeah, I guess.” I sat up straight and leaned into the screen on my laptop.
I was beginning to feel much more comfortable than I had thought I ever would. It was strange to trust someone on the dark web like this, but there was something about this man. He had a hold over me.
“Tell you what, we are holding an event tonight at eleven, and I hope you will log on to join us to see what we are all about. I promise it isn’t what you think.”
“I will have to check it out,” I said, partially wondering if I wanted to have anything more to do with this man.
The screen went black, and I shut Paul’s laptop.
I decided to go downstairs to grab a wine cooler out of the fridge. It was almost ten o’clock, and my parents were asleep, so I knew I wouldn’t get in trouble.
I drank the crappy drink, thinking long and hard about what had transpired and wondering if I wanted to know what went on in this so-called murder show.
It was five till eleven, and my cowardice was in full force, so I turned on the television.
“A WHITE VAN IS THE SUSPECT IN THE MISSING TEEN’S DISAPPEARANCE IN FRANKLIN COUNTY. WITNESSES SAY THEY SAW YOUNG JAMES MADISON TALKING TO SOMEONE DRESSED AS A CLOWN AS HE WAS ON HIS WAY TO SCHOOL FRIDAY MORNING…”
I turned off the disturbing news program deciding I would see the big deal with this “murder show.” There could not possibly be any reason for this nice man I had talked to be part of some sympathy murder thing.
The screen was still black, and then I saw a small room come into focus. The chat room was coming alive with flower emojis, and last-minute thank yous and best wishes from viewers who were donating bitcoin to the website’s owner.
Then I saw a man sitting in a chair and typing away at his computer. Something oddly terrifying about it was because the viewers seemed to see it, but the man didn’t seem to have anything to do with the viewers as though he didn’t even know he was being watched.
I watched as some of the viewers suddenly were also aware of this fact.
RHONDA24: Do you think he even knows this is the last night on earth?
Davtelly45: Nope, that is how it works.
RHONDA24: I know, but I thought he would be more prepared. He has been with us so long here.
Davtelly45: He will die soon, but he will be better off.
RHONDA24: No more cheating wife, no more debt, and no more anxiety about what tomorrow will bring.
Sassy-maria: I’m so happy for him.
Davtelly45: Me too, girl.
IVANfist: I hope this one is bloody, though. I like them with a little bit of gore.
RHONDA24: I have to admit I do too. Maybe he will get slashed on the throat.
Davtelly45: I just want our boy to be happy.
IVANfist: Fuck that gore all the way!
I read the chat, and then I watched as the man sitting at his computer seemed to be working on something very intensely. That is when I heard what sounded like a doorbell ring. The man everyone was watching got up, and walked away. I guessed to answer the door.
Then I heard the sound of someone yelling. A man with a black mask on was soon dragging the man who had just been sitting at the computer into his office.
“No, I have changed my mind! Please, I don't’ want to-”
His throat was slashed in front of the computer. The slash was so deep it nearly decapitated the man who was only moments ago typing away at his laptop.
I gasped, watching the scene unfold before me. Then the chat room exploded.
RHONDA24: Bye, Randy. We will miss you.
UNKNOWN: no, we won’t.
Davtelly45: SO long, Randy. I hope you can now be at peace.
UNKNOWN: Randy will never be at peace now. Hope he rots in hell.
Davtelly45: WHo is this?
RHONDA24: I will miss Randy, but anything will be better than dealing with a cheating wife, too much debt, and not knowing what tomorrow will bring. I long for my day to rest.
UNKNOWN: You should just put yourself out of your misery.
Davtelly45: Seriously, what the hell? Guy, this is pretty insensitive. We are celebrating the life and death of a warrior.
There was some strange interference, and I shut off the laptop, unplugging it.
I texted Paul to get his stupid laptop, and he told me he would be over tomorrow to get it.
I was sick to my stomach.
Had a real-life murder just taken place?
I knew without a shadow of a doubt it had.
I was paralyzed with fear and yet oddly jealous. I secretly wished I would be able to feel that peace that Randy felt. It terrified me, though, to no end.
\***************
I woke up the next morning and prepared for school. I had strange dreams of the people on the computer screen. I had dreams of them talking about me the way they had Randy.
I was sweating when I got out of bed, and I readied myself for school and what the new day would bring.
Paul came over after school to get his laptop, and I made sure I didn’t mention what happened the night before. I just wanted that website out of my life.
Paul seemed unphased by the fact I had his laptop. He had a few, so what was one going missing?
Following that incident, I stayed off my computer as much as possible. Then I had to log onto my own laptop to finish a school project about two weeks later.
When I logged into my email, there were many messages from a person that called themselves FALCON.
“Andrea Becker, this is FALCON, Milton wanted me to let you know that he knows you logged on to watch Randy transition, and he wanted to see how you were since viewing our little show.”
I deleted the messages. I didn’t want anything to do with these weird people.
As I had this thought, I got an instant message from MILTON.
Milton: Andrea, I am sorry you seem alarmed by Randy’s transition. Tell me, how did that make you feel? It is okay to feel scared, terrified, sad, angry, or all of the above.
I looked at what he was typing, and that same sweet consoling man made my guard go down. I would have asked him how he got my email, but I already knew that if it were easy for them to get my name, how much harder would it be to get my email?
Milton: Andrea?
Me: Hello, Milton. I don’t know how I feel about what I saw. I don’t think I want anything to do with this.
Milton: Andrea, talk to me.
Me: I don’t know what to say. You killed a man.
Milton: Yes, but he wanted it. We helped him transition. We can help you.
I looked at what he was saying. I had wanted so badly to feel at peace and lose all of my earthly worries, but this was too much too fast.
Me: I have to go to Milton.
Milton: Andrea Becker, reconsider. You don’t have to participate, but we are people that understand you. I read your online diary, your poetry, and I know what you wish for.
I was stunned and felt violated. How did they hack into my online diary? It was private thoughts on my blog site I never made public. I was terrified, and then Milton said something else that made me reconsider.
Milton: I have seen your interactions with others. We have watched you interact with your friends. We know it wasn’t you that initially found our website. We don’t care. We welcome you. We only ask that you keep our little secret to help others like yourself, and like Randy.
I don’t know what made me do it. I began to trust Milton. For the first time in my life, I didn’t feel weird about my feelings on death. These people seemed to understand.
Me: I feel so weird talking about it.
Milton: It is hard to acknowledge your feelings at first, but once you do, you will begin to understand.
Me: Are there others like Randy?
Milton: We try not to allow too many transitions at once. We give people time to mourn in our community after someone transitions. We have another coming up at the end of the month. This person has yet to be named.”
Me: How does it work?
Milton: We take a vote on who is next. Once the vote is in, the nominee gets contacted through a congratulations email to give them time to tie up loose ends. Then they are not told the day or time of their death. We feel that it would ruin the transition.
Me: What if they change their mind?
Milton: They are given no way to back out. It is in our clause. If you are on track for transition, which I feel you are, just being a part of our community is an agreement. You have already witnessed a transition - an illegal act. So you have already agreed to the clause.
Me: What about you?
Milton: What about me?
ME: Can you transition?
Milton: I will in time. My agreement was after my children will be old enough to understand. Once they are, then I will join others like Randy and you.
“Oh,” I typed
Milton: I have to go now; it was nice chatting with you. Remember, if you ever need someone to talk to, we are here. We understand how you feel.
He logged off the chat, and I sat in front of the chat. Then another name popped up.
RHONDA24: Hello, Andrea.
I didn’t respond right away.
RHONDA24: I just want to let you know if you ever need a friend. I am not much older than you, and I get how you feel. You can reach out to me.
Me: Thank you. I have to go now.
RHONDA24: Have a great evening, Andrea.
I logged off the computer.
#############
As time wore on, I realized that I enjoyed the community. I had made a few friends within the community. I had several bad days in the last month; one of them was that I had a falling out with Paul. He was angry with me for spending time online in the “transition” community as I had learned to refer to it as.
The community helped me overcome some of my anxieties, so I didn’t think so much about dying anymore. If anything, I wanted to live because I felt relieved that I now had a group that understood how I felt. After all, they felt the same way as me.
Then the day came out of nowhere. I was planning my graduation speech, as I had been elected by Mr. Frazier to give my class a short address. I typed, re-typing, and over-editing everything I was writing when I got a ding on my computer.
My email popped up, and I recognized the email address. It was from FALCON.
CONGRATULATIONS ANDREA BECKER YOUR COUNTDOWN TO TRANSITION BEGINS 5-4-3-2- NOW.
I gulped reading the email because I didn’t feel the way I had before. I didn’t want to panic. This had to be a mistake. I was no longer depressed; I had things to live for now. Why had they voted on me transitioning?
I saw that Milton was online.
ME: Milton? I think you made a mistake. I am the least qualified to transition. Especially that now I feel so much better!
Crickets could have chirped from the computer. Instead of responding as Milton had hundreds of times before, he ignored me and logged off.
This was a nightmare. I stood up, looking around my room.
Indeed, I’d have time to graduate. I was at the disadvantage of being home alone. My parents were at some Union banquet because my father was on the teamster's board. I got up from my computer desk and locked all of the doors and secured the doors.
I turned on the radio to think. There was a story on the radio about a White Van and how another child had been missing. Another witness saw someone dressed as a clown talking to the child.
Ugh! Not something I needed to know to hear right now. I flipped the station to some soft music. Sarah Mclachlan came on, so I left it. I needed to think. I logged into the chat, and I could see all the congratulations Andrea comments in the chat.
ME: Hey guys, I think there is a mistake.
RHONDA24: Congratulations, Andrea!
DAVTELLY45: I hope you have the best transition.
UNKNOWN: I hope you bleed into the camera for daddy.
ME: WHAT?
Who would say such a thing?
UNKNOWN: I can’t wait to cut you from ear to ear.
RHONDA24: DUDE! Get out of here!
I got a private chat request from Rhonda24.
I accepted it.
Rhonda24: Don’t sweat it, Andrea. The guy is some weirdo that has been harassing a bunch of us. We can’t block him. He has this crazy firewall system. Just please know how happy I am for you and how much I will miss you.
I couldn’t think of anything else to say.
I was about to log off when there was a bang from outside my house.
Before I could do anything, a stranger wearing a black mask burst through my bedroom door. I stood in pure terror and shock.
It was happening now!
I did the only thing I could think of and grabbed the desk chair in front of me, and flung it at the stranger.
He was tall, thin, and didn’t seem to have been prepared for my sudden means of survival.
He lurched forward and grabbed me by the throat. I could feel his large hands trying to suffocate me. I looked over to the computer and saw it had popped back on - all on its own accord. A red light flashed on the screen. I realized I was being recorded for someone’s amusement.
The darkness engulfed me in this very moment, and I sprung up, kicking the man in the groin.
He growled in pain, and for a moment, I had time to run but not for long before the man stood up and shut my bedroom door so I had no means of escape.
He pulled out a knife from behind him, and I looked around my room to find something else I could defend myself with. I saw a coffee mug, grabbing it and throwing it at his head. To my luck, he stopped to rub his head, and I barreled past him towards the door.
Then I was caught off guard by a swiping of the knife to the back of my leg, causing me to scream in pain.
I hit the ground, and he went for my throat with the knife. I rolled over quickly, causing him to stab the floor instead of me.
I kicked him in the head this time as he struggled to get the knife out of the wooden floor. He fell to the ground, and for a moment, we both worked with the knife. Finally, I managed to grab it and stab him inside the chest.
The struggle was over. Someone had transitioned tonight, but it wasn’t me. It wasn’t going to be me. I had far too much to live for. I took a deep breath and then took off the mask of the man.
To my utter despair, it was Paul. How had Paul gotten involved with trying to kill me?
It all made perfect sense now how they all had known so much about me. Still, Paul had been my best friend for years. I ran downstairs to find my cell phone and call for 911.
The dispatcher said they would be sending for someone as soon as possible.
I saw a large white truck coming towards my house, barreling down my street. I jumped into the road, flagging them down.
There was something strange about the truck. I realized when the headlights were no longer blinding my vision that it wasn’t the ambulance. I backed up onto the sidewalk and continued to look down the street for the ambulance. The truck did something strange, though. They stopped in front of me back up, so my view down the road was blocked.
A door to the back of the truck opened up.
There were two tall men dressed as clowns. One had blue hair and a red nose with what looked like blood around his mouth and dirty teeth. He grinned big at me. The other had on a red and yellow wig with green makeup. He looked more sinister than the other clown.
They stood looking at me, and then circus music began to play. I was annoyed by whatever joke they were trying to play, especially at a time like this. I could hear the ambulance now as it was making its way down my street. I tried to walk around the two stupid clowns. It was all so ridiculous to me.
That is when one of them grabbed me. I screamed for them to let me go! I had to help Paul! Then the other one helped get me by the legs. Before I knew it, I was no longer breathing.
I, Andrea Becker, died that night. I won’t bore you with the details. It was gruesome, and it was horrid. I have been missing for three years. I hope someone can see my story and relay what happened to me.
I’d like my parents to be able to have peace. We all deserve some peace.
I saw the book close on its own then. There were tears in my eyes as I read the last words of Andrea Becker.
I wasn’t sure how I could help, but I went over to my computer. There were numerous reports on the sightings of clowns in connection to missing children. I decided to search for the area combining missing person cases from around the region. I didn’t know how I was suddenly able to hack into systems using multiple databases, but I was doing it. For Andrea Becker’s sake, I was doing it.
That is when I found something very crucial. There were several sightings recently in my neighborhood. There were also six missing persons in a five-mile vicinity. I clicked, I typed, and I searched until I put the connections together. In all of the disappeared persons, there were three bodies found. One was of a seventeen-year-old female.
I knew without a shadow of a doubt that it would be the remains of Andrea Becker’s young body. I forwarded the information to the detective working the case. How had they not put it together on their own, I had no idea. I did now have gifts now that helped me help those who could not help themselves.
Later that night, there was a break in three of the missing person cases. No thanks to me. I was tired after Andrea Becker’s story.
That book never rests, though. Last night in the middle of the night, I heard music coming from somewhere.
It woke me from a dead sleep. I decided to find out what the matter was. It sounded like circus music.
I walked into my living room, and parked in front of my house was a white van with clowns in the driver's seat. I stared at them for a long while and then opened my front door.
Two maniacal clowns got out of the back, and as they slowly made their way towards my house, I let out a deep breath. Then I yelled.
I was using my new found thunderous gift their windows to the van all burst. They both held on to their ears as though they were in pain. I had no doubt why they were here.
I heard someone yell, “HELP ME, PLEASE!” It was a woman.
I became momentarily distracted by the sound of wailing behind me. Sad, painful wailing.
I looked away from the clown van towards the READ ME book on my couch. When I looked back toward the street, the van with the clowns was now long gone. I would see to it they were punished, but until then, I had other pressing business.
I picked up the book, and inside it, I read the chapter to the next story.
I was the Youngest Member of the Lunatic Asylum...
submitted by blackfridayswitch13 to libraryofshadows [link] [comments]


2020.09.15 10:28 SucculentPirahnna A certain Kaashiv Infotech.

FYI this is a throwaway account.
Many of you peeps in this sub are aware of the scumbag practices of Byju's and it's subsidiary Whitehack Jr. Even user u/whitehacksr has posted many posts about it.
Today i want to let you guys know about this certain small company i went to, last year for "programming courses" in Tamil Nadu.
The founder "Venkatesan Prabhu" is apparently a 10 time Microsoft MVP winner. Nothing fishy right?
Now i've heard about this MVP(Most Valued Professional) title but his name doesn't show up in the query in the link(i edited the link a bit because this is a selftext post.) (https: mvp.microsoft com/en-us/).
He claims to have worked in Microsoft Australia with his wife but i can't check his background. I don't trust his linkedin profile. His entire family runs this show.
I joined his cramped crowded suffocating office to learn programming languages 2-3 years ago, paid 6k and finished it in a span of 4months. The students who join here are from various other southern states and some from northern states some even from abroad(idk how this dude does his advert).
Search for inplant training and google just plasters his company and his site on the entire first page with a ridiculous amount of mandatory 5 star reviews. Yes they coerce you to type a 5 star review and give a compulsory video review. If you refuse, no certificate for you lol.
You don't sign on any receipt/application form with any rules. Just pay and take a seat and listen to their real time "company policy".
Not only that your review should contain your real name, which college you're from and what courses you've completed in detail.
Even though there are a handful dozen number of "staff" who are assigned to teach you, they're clueless. Doubts.on Machine learning? Virtual function in C++? Entire Java? Well good luck. You'll have to stare at paragraphs of notes on presentation slides in a "custom buggy application" typed by the staff referring some old pile of dated materials or from stack exchange.
The advertised practical learning, learn a language within 30hrs is defenestrated. Did you reach there in time? Well wait for an hour tilk you get drenched in sweat to get a PC.
They'll nag you constantly to register to their website, subscribe to their YT channels, follow their Insta and FB, fees are not refundable and are to be paid on day one ASAP.
The constant buzzwords you hear are "cloud computing, Big Data, A.I" and what not, only to gain very little knowledge by staring at the materials he created which you could've come across online.
Finished learning programming languages? Now copy paste templates and codes to create a working DBMS server and a login page or create a website. How are materials OP? They teach you the ABCs and not the grammar(if you catch my drift) and even the materials have mistakes.
Are you tryna bust your ass into IT companies like infosys? Zoho? TCS? You know all those sweatshops. Well here are these question and answers they'll ask you in your interviews, eat em and puke em.
Venkat has various dubious claims and one of them is that he had hacked Anna University servers and changed the marks for his friends to get outstanding marks back in his day.
He has this advice "to not teach or share whatever you're learning here to your friends, they'll stomp you and never look back" the rest of the alarmist speech you can figure it out.
Now for those who don't get a job, in his words "Come and work here, why should you waste your time when you can be valuable here. I'll give you reasonable pay." If this doesn't stink more than a skunk's fart then idk what else. The staff members working there are the victims of those words.
Majority of the students who join here don't do a background check. Words like "Microsoft MVP", "Award winner", "World record setter" are enough to change this office into a honeypot. Oh he's a lawyer now too.
He even offers internships BUT YOU GOTTA PAY FOR IT lol and that's where most of the crowd comes for, for the internship certificate that they've worked for and paid to a Microsoft MVP who's name doesn't show up in the official website.
This place is just no more than a massive big ass ponzi scheme factory and his staff members just follow him like a cult. His R&D room is literally a kitchen.
I was forced to give a 5 star review after my course got over but immediately changed it when i got out of the office. It got deleted the day later.
Now i got no bad blood with the staff or the head. The staff is friendly but Venkatesan Prabhu is a charismatic douchebag.
Just wanted to put this here after reading about Byju's and saw similarities with the practices but this one is aimed at engineering college graduates. Private companies and institutions like these should rot in purgatory for exploiting students.
Kaashiv Infotech has 6,500-ish Google reviews most of em are 5 stars, their in-site review page has 99k reviews all of em 5stars. Of course.
Here's a 🍪 for reading my wall of text.
submitted by SucculentPirahnna to india [link] [comments]


2020.09.10 13:19 TableIn How to Succeed in Smooth Management of Multiple Restaurants?

CUSTOMER STORY Juls, United Kingdom We were constantly facing the same issues that prevented the smooth management and control of multiple restaurants located far apart.
THE PROBLEM​ Smooth Control of Four Different Restaurants Owning and controlling four different restaurants in the United Kingdom: we found it really disrupting to organise the whole workflow from a distance (being constantly present in all of them is obviously not possible). Our team members were doing their best to record all of the phone bookings in our reservation books. Our inefficient computer programs also meant that we were unable to observe the current occupancy and flow of all the various restaurants when we weren’t present at the location. We know that advance monitoring is crucial to predict upcoming workflow. Unfortunately, as we weren’t able to see the awaiting flow in all of our restaurants, we were facing constant issues when trying to order the proper amount of ingredients. The same issues occurred when we were putting together schedules and trying to staff the kitchen and dining areas effectively. THE SOLUTION An Advanced Online Table Reservation System We started using the Tablein reservation system which allows us to observe and monitor the workflow of all our restaurants from anywhere in the UK, and the world. Whether we need to monitor one of our restaurants from another city, or if we’re spending time on holiday abroad, we are now able to keep up to date with all our restaurants, observing real-time situations and data.
THE RESULT 87% More Effective Control of All Our Restaurants When we are present in one of our restaurants, we can easily observe the situation in the others. If urgent matters arise, we can immediately find out about it online and head over to the location where we’re needed. Knowing the advance workflow for all of our restaurants means that we can now order the proper amount of food ingredients that we need for the preparation of dishes. We’re so happy that our waiting staff hardly ever have the need to say “Unfortunately, we don’t have this dish today”, anymore. We can effectively plan the staff schedule and required number of team members for each day. If there is a special event or big group reservation, then we can prepare for it in advance by increasing the number of employees in the kitchen as well as in the dining hall. Now we’re able to stay in control of all the restaurants, not only when we’re on site in one of them, but also when we’re away in another city, or even abroad. We never have to feel far away from our business! If a guest who is presently enjoying his time in one of our restaurants wants to make a reservation in another one then we don’t have to waste time on phone calls, turning notebook pages, and handwriting. We can easily connect to our collective reservation system, check the availability, and immediately place as well as confirm the reservation. In case the preferred restaurant is fully booked then we can offer a table and time in another one! If any changes in reservations occur (to the time, number of guests, food preferences), then we can easily note them straight down in the system by ourselves. This helps our waiting staff a lot, when they are serving guests down the hall during busy hours. ADVICES Top Tips by Juls If you own more than one restaurant, implement the Tablein online reservation system in all of them. The automatic reservation system significantly contributes to smooth and efficient workflow so you should try to remind your guests about the opportunity of booking online in every communication!
submitted by TableIn to u/TableIn [link] [comments]


2020.09.10 10:46 joshuawaggoner90 Werewolves are Assholes: Pt 5

[F]
Werewolves are Assholes, But Vampires are Worse 1/2
So as you can imagine, at this point things weren't looking so hot for us. We had Little Missy locked up with some kind of supernatural furniture next to Mark in my garage, one of our werewolves is bed-er... toilet ridden, we have a literal hostage situation, our seasoned vampire hunter was nowhere to be found(and I'll definitely be having a talk with that secret keeping bitch about that when I see her again), and yeah... the vampires. I was definitely in way over my head. I mean I ain't gonna leave the little hoodlums to fend for themselves, but you can bet your ass I'll never have to wash a dish or dust a shelf for the rest of my life after this. Oh, and for the people asking about our cannibalistic princess and her name, well she said something about it when she asked me to write this part. She said she wants to do something like in that Brad Pitt movie where the guy telling the story never mentions their name. That girl sure likes her movies... Bless her heart.
So at this point we were still all huddled in the living room trying to figure out what we were going to do next, making our best effort to talk over the dual barrage of obscenities spilling out from the garage. Finally we agreed to close the door for a minute and let them tucker themselves out.
"Ok, Wolf Boy, ideas." I said once I closed the door and walked back into the room with everyone else.
"I... Um... We might be screwed." Milo says in response.
That was followed by a mild uproar from everyone in attendance. Likely not what they wanted to hear from the only one in the room even half familiar with all this nonsense. I managed to get everyone quieted down about the time Jasmine started to pick up another heavy object to bash Milo with again.
"Alright alright! Everyone just calm the hell down!" I hollered over the ruckus. "Listen sugar, you gotta chill. It ain't that boy's fault he's simple." I said to Jasmine while I took the marble elephant statue out of her hands. "And this was expensive. Try to go for something cheap next time."
About that time Trey spoke up. "Ok, so we have to do something. We damn sure can't leave her in there like that." He said, pointing towards the garage where some muffled commotion could still be heard.
"And what the hell is it we're supposed to do?!" Joannah commented back.
Trey started to answer but Dex beat him to it. "What ever we can!" He shouted. "Not to mention that guy's still in there with plugs missing from him all over the place. And I don't know about you but if I have to clean up one more pile of Mark-shit, him or me one is gonna die."
About this time the sun was already up. And about mid argument we all stopped and turned when we heard the stairs creak as Teagan came down.
"What is all these noise and screams?" She said in that darling broken English of hers. She looked an absolute mess. Poor girl looked like death eating a cracker.
"Oh sweetie you don't need to worry about all that right now." I said about the same time Milo said,
"What are you doing down here? You should go rest some more. I'll come up and tell you everything in a little w-" But she cut him off.
"NO! You will tell me now!" She demanded. "Somebody drop the peas."
"Beans." Dex said. "It's spill the beans."
"What?" Teagan asked. "Who has spilled beans?"
"No no, I was just... The expression is to spill the beans." He tried to explain.
"Why did you spill beans? Have you cleaned them? Why would you leave such mess?" She scolded. "You go clean these beans."
Milo was now off in a corner with his face buried in his palms in embarrassment, Dex made his way into the kitchen long enough to fake clean imaginary beans and return to the living room with everyone else. "Ok, fuck all of you for not helping me out with that." He said.
Then we got Teagan up to speed on everything that happened since she went up stairs, down to the little metal thing that just saved all our asses. As you might imagine, she was a tad... distraught.
"WHAT?! YOU HAVE HER LOCKED LIKE SOME ANIMAL?!" She screamed before turning to make for the garage.
"NO NO!" Milo stopped her. "We're trying to let her wear herself out for a while to see if that calms her down a little."
"NO! I must go to help h-" She stopped as long, low, growl roared across the room from Teagan's... stomach. "Oh no!" She groaned before grabbing her gut and dashing up the stairs like lightning. A few seconds later we all heard the bathroom door slam shut.
We all turned to look at Milo again.
"...... Werewolf.... stuff." He said quietly, suddenly forcing us all to recall the phrase that near traumatized us all about a week ago... "Had to poop out my werewolf arm."
"Yeah... What goes up must come down, what goes in... must come out." He explained in his own kinda way. "It's hard on the body to do what she did. Didn't have enough food stored for mass so when she changed it took till there wasn't anything left to take. Now her body is trying to get rid of everything that isn't mostly human, which doesn't leave her with much. That's why she's so bad off right now."
"The poor girl..." Lesley murmured softly.
"She's made it through the worst of it." Milo reassured her.
"So... does the "out" part get worse too when you change all the way?" Dex asked.
"That's disgusting!" Joannah exclaimed. "Why would you ask that?!"
And as you can all imagine, Joannah's revulsion at the question only served to excite Milo's enthusiasm to answer.
"Define worse." Milo said with a grin.
"What do you mean?" Dex questioned.
"Well I mean worse for who? The one doing it... or whoever has to deal with the aftermath?" He smiled even bigger in Joannah's direction causing her to wince. "When we're fully transformed we're also in a lot better shape when we change back, but what comes out, well... you guys ever seen Jurassic Park?"
It took us a second before we collectively groaned "Oh my god!"
"I mean now Teagan, she's a proper lady about it. Usually brings some toilet paper and finds her a secluded spot away from civilization and innocent human beings and takes care of it there." He went on.
"Annnd... what do you do? To ask a question I don't really think I want answered." Trey said.
"Ah, well ya see I like to find the nearest construction site and just unleash hell on some poor, unsuspecting port-a-john. Then I like to hide and wait around for the first person to open the door. One guy actually started crying. It was great." Milo bragged.
And there we were, in the middle of my house, having an in depth conversation about werewolf shit. Somebody stop the merry go round. I want off...
Nobody went back to sleep. We all stayed up and discussed what we was gonna do now, to little success. After a while me, Trey, and Milo went to the kitchen to start making some food for the recovering Teagan upstairs, who Lesley, Dex, Jasmine and Joannah were with. We'd finish making something and one of them would come down long enough to snatch it up and take it to her.
After a while Trey and Milo got to chatting.
"So how'd you and her meet?" Milo asked Trey, inquiring about the rabid shit head on lockdown in the garage.
"Met in college." He answered. "Same economics class. Actually, the first conversation we ever had was her asking me out."
Milo slammed his hand down hard on the table. "WHAT?!!" He yelled.
"Yeah, we even went on a couple of dates way back." Trey laughed. "Once we even... held hands."
"You dated... HER?" Milo asked, pointing towards the garage.
"Well yeah. I mean she's not so bad all the time and she's cute, in an "I might stab you in your sleep" kind of way." Trey replied.
"Oh my god..." Milo said, leaning back in his chair to look around the corner. "You're right. She's... cute. What the hell?"
"But I thought she was-" Milo started.
"A lesbian?" I interrupted. "Well I get how you might think that. She does mostly bat for the away team but I catch her looking at the fellas every now and then. I try not to label them kinds of things. That way nobody feels pressured to stay inside a box. Let people hump whoever they wanna hump I say."
"But you let people call you Gay Jake." Milo says.
"That's cause I'm queer as a three dollar bill sweety. Don't want nothing to do with any vagina. They creep me right ass out. They look like them face things from the alien movie. You ever make eye contact with one? Looks like something's gonna try to jump out and get ya." I explain, likely a little more vividly than entirely necessary.
"Mmkay..." Milo says slowly, somewhat cringing. "What about the others? How'd they all meet?"
"Well Joannah is kinda new to all this. I met her at the mall where she worked and we'd only been dating for about a week before we... met you." Trey answered.
"Yeah, and Dex was already living here when I brought Shit Head in." I added.
"Wait, Dex lived here too? Why?" Milo asked.
"That boy had his problems too. I had a lot troubled kids through here over the years. Dex had him a fondness for opioids which led him to a fondness for heroin. So he ended up here in a similar way. He was cleaned up and getting back on his feet about the time that little hellion came." I said.
"Then what?" Milo asked, scooting forward in his seat.
"Oh she bullied the piss out of the poor boy." I told him. "But that boy stayed and took it all and never complained not the first time. And I'd tell him, I'd say "Why you let her do you like that?" and he'd just smile and say that he could see how much pent up anger she had, and that she was dealing with it the only way she knew how. Bless that boy's heart, he hung in there till the bitter end to where one day she just snapped, and all the guilt of every time she'd smack him or push him or call him some horrible name or break something of his hit her all and once."
"And then what?" Milo asked almost standing up off his chair.
"She did something a hadn't ever seen her do up to that point. She apologized. Hell, after that you'd hardly see them apart really. I don't think she would have recovered as well if he wasn't around like he was. I think they been best friends ever since then." I explained. "I been catching him peeking into the garage on his way back upstairs every time he comes down to get Teagan's food."
After that conversation I'd catch Milo and Dex making their way from the kitchen to the garage to Teagan's room side by side. I mean most of the time it was just long enough to let a pressure wave of obscenities burst through the opening, but they were making the effort just the same. An now let me tell y'all, this next part just 'bout broke my little heart.
Later that night I went to poke my head in the garage real quick and oh my goodness. I found Milo and Dex both sitting on the cold concrete floor. Dex was out like a light lean't up against the wall, but Milo had brought a laptop downstairs and had it open and playing her favorite movies for her. Every now and then he'd catch Mark trying to watch so he'd pick something random off the floor and throw it at him saying "NO! You don't get to watch." Which would cause our predatory princess to crack an evil little giggle each time.
Now don't get me wrong, I still wasn't going to get in range of her chompers, but this was the calmest she'd been so far. I stuck my head in just a little and asked Milo if he needed anything.
"Nah, Teagan passed out from the itus a while ago so I figured I'd hang down here with Jaws and the Fecal Phenom over there and keep her company." He answered.
"Hey... Is that HER laptop?" I asked. "How'd you get into that? She keeps it locked up like Fort Knox."
"Well... at first she said she'd open it for me. But when I tried to hand it to her... Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice..." He turned to show me a mouth sized section of his right sleeve missing with what was apparently dried blood around the edges. "So I had to figure it out myself. Wasn't too hard. Turns out it was bobbys idgets. All one word."
"Boy, you gotta tell me, are you an idiot or a genius? I gotta know." I finally broke down and asked him what we was all thinking.
"Exactly." He answered with a wink and turned back to the screen.
That boy makes me tired I swear to god. He's lucky he's cute.
We all gathered back up in the kitchen later the next day to resume our figuring. Like you might expect we didn't get too awful far at all. That is, not until Teagan finally made her way down stairs in relatively better conditon. And that's cause when he saw her, Dex went to say hi and wave to her, which made him drop that gun-shaped knife thing of his. Which THEN thunked tip first right into my hardwood floor.
"Oh damn it boy! Y'all are steady fucking up my whole house!" I barked.
But about that time Milo got this strange look on his face.
"Hey Teag... HEY! HEY!!" He yelled. "Teagan! That guy who made these things!" He said, yanking the cutlery from MY HARDWOOD FLOOR. "Maybe he knows something about what we can do to help her!"
"HOLY SHIT!! BANG RATTLE" Sounded from over near the fridge where Jasmine had been pilfering around for food. "Oh god... Oh god..." She groaned, holding her head as she slowly shuffled over to the table.
"Oh honey... Your poor head. Are you alright?" I tried to ask but she just held a finger up at me.
"Mm. M-mmm..." She mumbled, trying to hold still as much as possible until she was able to take a deep breath and talk again. "Do... Do you think that would work?" She asked Milo.
"It's worth a shot. We should at least try. Teag, do you have any contact info from him or anything? What was his name." He said.
"No. I am sorry, but we did not get it before we leave." She said. "But I am thinking his name was Hephaestus. He says to call him Hep also."
To spare you some boring dialogue, in about 30 seconds that idiot savant had found him on... fucking Facebook. Turns out he's pretty easy to get in touch with through his day job not making vampire fighting equipment. About another 30 seconds later we all gathered around the phone set to speaker as it rang.
The other end clicked and someone on the other side answered, "HELLO! If this is the IRS I already told you to suck my ass."
"That is the strange Tony person." Teagan whispered.
"Um yeah hi. I think I'll take a rain check on the ass sucking." Milo replied, causing everyone else to chuckle. "Any chance we can chat with Hep real quick?"
"Oh shit! Right right!" The Tony man said. "Gimme a second." We then heard him say something with the phone way from his face that sounded like "Here. Run this out to him." Followed by the familiar sound of metal tinking and the sound of some kind of power tool getting louder in the distance.
"Heeeello! You got Hep!" Another voice answered.
"YES HELLO!" Milo said loudly. "Hi yeah, my friend and my wife just left your place a few days ago. You remember?"
"Wait! You two are married?!" Lesley shrieked. "Really?!"
Milo and Teagan both held up their left hands showing off a small black band tattooed around both of their ring fingers that apparently none of us noticed before.
"AWWW! That's adorable!" Jasmine and Lesley both cooed in unison, causing Joannah to groan in disgust.
"We got married in Romania... In Vlad's castle. It was the last thing I used my inheritance money on other than the plane tickets back here." He said with a big, proud grin.
"That is just beautiful." The voice in the phone spoke up, causing us all the jump a little. "Yeah, still here guys." The man said.
"Oh right..." Milo says back into the phone. "Uh, so we kinda have a situation."
"Your buddy went psycho and tried to eat someone?" The voice interjected.
"I... Yeah. How'd you know?" Milo asked him.
"I had a hunch that things might go tits up with your girl in the garage over there. Guess my little friend was helpful after all." The man said, making us all lean back away from the phone.
"How... do you know she's in the gargage?" Milo said, joining the rest of us in looking around the room suspiciously.
"Don't worry about it." The man said, increasing our worry. "Now what do you need from me?"
"Well..." Milo answered, "We were hoping you'd know how to fix her... or something."
"....... I do not. BUT," He continued, "I think if there is a way, I know the people who would know. I'm going to give you their number. Just tell them Hephaestus told you to call. That should get them talking."
Then he gave us the number to call, wished us luck, and hung up. We didn't waste a second dialing the new number. We sat the phone back down on the table and circled around again, listening to the ring.
CLICK "Worst Hotel, front desk! Who the fuck is this?!" A voice shouted through the speaker.
We all looked around at each other, all seemingly collectively thinking that the art of answering the phone has really taken a dive.
"Uh hi, my name is Milo and I was told to call by Hephaestus! Who the fuck is this?!" Milo shouted back.
"Ugh... God damn it. I hate taking these. Jesus what a day... Hello my name is Lezley. How can I help you today?" The man says.
"Oh my god my name's Lesley too!" Lesley chirps excitedly.
"Like O... M... G! Do you like... wanna totally be BFFs and like have sleepovers and talk about all the cute boys on the football team and like do each other's nails and stuff?!" The man on the phone said in the most heavily condescending tone I think any of us ever heard.
"Asshole..." Lesley whispered to herself before walking away from the table.
"What the hell do you people want?" The man asked.
"Our friend is a half vampire, werewolf thing, I think, and she's trying to eat us." Milo says into the phone. "We need to know how to fix her."
"An orichalcum infused weapon to the head or the heart ought to fix her." The man replies, sending Jasmine into a shit fit.
"Uh, no can do good buddy. We're going to need her alive." Milo said once we got Jasmine settled back down.
"UGHHH!! Ok god! You said she's trying to eat people yeah?" He asks.
"Yeah, that's right. She bit a chunk out of our hosta-er... Out of Mark. Ate his finger too." Milo answers.
"Jesus. Have any of you EVER watched a vampire movie? What do vampires need?" The man asks in the same condescending tone.
""Blood?" Milo half answers half asks.
"Yes blood dumbass! And what happens when they don't get what they need for a while? They flip the fuck out! So... how about... and hear me out hear... YOU GET HER SOME GOD DAMN BLOOD!" The man yells at us.
"So... we just go in there and give her some of our blood?" Dex asks. "That's easy enough."
"No you jackass!" The man barks at him. "Not unless you want her to bite a chunk out of your stupid neck! Ok look... You idiots obviously can't be trusted to think this through yourselves, so here it is. Right now you need to find a way to slide her a BIG bucket of FRESH and COMPLETELY HUMAN blood. If she's only half vampire, however the fuck THAT happened, then she'll probably only need a small amount every now and then. Regular food should work most of the time. Pure vampires get their nutrition from liquefying the entire body and sucking that up. If she doesn't have the ostial-dentitions you see on regular ones, and her tongue isn't partially bifurcated, then she's probably get most of her nutrition from regular sourses. And once she's calmed down you'll be able to donate to her directly, but unless you want her to tear you a new asshole, right now you need to find some way to get her the blood while she's all bitey and shit. This is just how she is now. You don't fix werewolf and you don't fix vampire. Deal with it. God I feel like I'm just hear to explain shit to people all the damn time. CLICK"
And with that the guy hung up, leaving us all looking at the black screen in silence. After about 30 seconds of gazing into the touch screen void Jasmine finally broke the quiet.
"I guess we need human blood." She says.
Milo responds, "What a coincidence! I know someone who has some to spare!", grabbing a metal turkey baster syringe and a large tup-a-ware bowl before starting for the garage with a spring in his step.
"WHAT THE FUCK YOU PSYCHOPATH?!" Joannah shrieked at the top of her lungs, stepping in front of Milo with her arms spread, blocking his way.
"What?" Milo questioned with the most bullshit feigned innocent tone possible.
As y'all can imagine, that didn't go well and the rest of us damn near had to break up a fist fight. After we got them two cooled down... about 30 minutes later... we started figuring on how we was supposed to come by a heap of fresh human blood. Long story short, it's pretty obvious a blood bank would have something to do with our solution, but we sat around for hours trying to come up with a heist game plan before that lovable moron Milo said something I still ain't sure was smart or dumb. But I gotta admit, didn't none of us think of it.
"Why don't we just run in, grab it, and run back out?" He asked us all, sitting up from where he had been laying down on the floor.
"What are you talking about?" Trey asked him.
"I was just thinking, how many people try to steal blood from a blood bank? It's not like they keep that shit in a vault with a bunch of armed guards and stuff right?" Milo explained, which actually started making some kinda sense.
So we all decided, we was gonna smash and grab a blood bank. We found one a respectable ways away online first, then we had to decide who was going.
"I'm thinking Milo." Trey said. "I mean if something does go to shit and he gets shot he can heal. We can't."
Everyone seemed to agree, then Teagan spoke up. "Then someone will have to also go with him." She said.
"Why's that honey?" I asked her.
"Teag n-!" Milo started but Teagan said it before he could stop her.
"Because Milo does not know how to do the driving." She said.
"THANK... YOU... TEAGAN! Thank... you..." Milo says loudly.
"HAHAHA! Oh my god you don't know how to drive?!" Joannah cackled mockingly at the poor boy, who's head was now hidden down in his arms.
"HEY! You behave you little shit." I scolded her. "It's ok sugar. We ain't gonna judge you none here." I comforted him, secretly taking out my little note pad and putting a check under the stupid section of the smart/stupid tally I had been keeping of him through the day.
Anyway, I ended up volunteering to drive the little hoodlum cause I had a dummy plate for my Wrangler that weren't nobody looking for and that don't trace back to my house. And once the next day rolled around we were ready to get wild. We figured sooner was better than later to get our situation somewhat stabilized again. Plus we figured the more time we had to think about it the more likely we were to come to our senses and chicken out.
submitted by joshuawaggoner90 to DrCreepensVault [link] [comments]


2020.09.05 16:02 Aholabambino Is my girlfriend craving other man?

Hello, I am 32 male and I have same age girlfriend, I am from Lithuania and she is from Iran and we both live in UK ( if that makes any difference ) I have residence here and she has only one year students visa after that she will have to go back to Iran unless, she will manages to find a way how to stay here for ever ( which she is planning to do ) she is looking for a job and a support from them so she could stay here. So we met on a dating site, a year a go. And after I talked to her about being girlfriend boyfriend she said Ok, she still kept staying on the dating sites... We went out one evening to explore for cool places to chill, we went to this normal looking bar, hang in there for a bit and then went outside for a smoke ( we smoke when we have a drink ). We met this other couple, a well dressed guy who looked very similar to his brother and father... and a shy girl. The guy just straight up stared my girl from down to top, and my girl was kinda looking back to him, I had that feeling already that something is not right, anyway we start talking and my girl said can we get You 2 numbers so we can go out with You 2 any day to have fun as a couple with a couple... Coz she likes makeing friends, at least that's what she told me. So we added only him on to a group chat on what's app Turns out the guy was single and he just hooked up with this shy girl for a few day and then she had to leave the country. When I found out about it, my bells starting going off in my head. So I knew that she is still on a dating sites and + this guy started chatting with my girl how, he apologise to me, but he have to say that my girlfriend is georges... And I said, Yes I know... That's why I chose her. And then my girl and him kinda started to plan a night out... with intention for me to make a cool friend. So I went to get places and talked about everything, I said why are You still on dating sites if You with me? And I talked about not trusting this guy aswell. I knew for sure and told her aswell, that he likes her... And she was all sceptical about it... And said that the dating apps are just for fun... That guys will right funny stuff to her which will make her laugh. She asked me : Do I want her to delete the dating apps, and I didn't wanted to take away something what she enjoyed away so I said, that it's cool. So we met up with that guy in a club. And my girlfriend was all over me all night just holding me tight by my hand not letting me go even for a second. We hanged for few hours, we had pretty cool conversations with him and in the end I even drove the gut home, he invited us in aswell for few mins to show his place. I accepted it ( I think it was stupid of me, but I didn't really think anything of it) So he stated showing his room, then his kitchen. Told us a story how he fked some girl on a kitchen table... I kinda knew, that he was trying to impress my gf... My gf was not very impressed, At least that's how it looked like. And we went home, she said we should of not went I side his home, he might of killed us... Anyway few months after I am getting more and more in to her and I still see her on her dating apps. I bring it up, she went all quite about it and said she were not useing it. And then I showed he that I see when she is online... and it was 12h last time She went online... she didn't said anything and instead of coming to my place she said she don't want to go anymore, she want to go home. I stoped at her house and asked her : " do You want to talk about it?" She said no and left my car. After 1h she called back all apologetic and asked to come back to pick her up. I went there and she start crying and apologized. We came back to mine and she sat me on a bed and deleted all the dating apps... in my vision... After some time She had to go back to Iran. I had this bad feeling while she was there... So the guy had a party going on and he invited us to come. But My gf was out of the country and I think coz of not looking weird he told me to come. I said ok. And at the same day he tried to talk me out of it lol... like it's a long ride, You have to go tomorrow to work and so on. But I still made an effort. We hanged it was pretty cool and chill and everyone loved me there. So he invited me for another party. And again it was great.
After 4 months she came back she were living with me for few weeks. Things were going good, after the same guy invited us both to his leaving party, apparently he is leaving UK to live in Paris. And Yesterday I went to the gym and came back and she mentioned the guy, that he was sad in his texts, when he was inviting us. And I said why do You think about him? She kinda got a bit deffencive and said : I am just saying... Than we said down and I was watching a bit about body language and how to spot a lier... I asked her do You like that guy? : She said no while nodding her head. That means she is lieing coz the mouth said no but the body said yes... she was nodding her head while saying no. I told her about it and she said.it means nothing... And I went to sleep and didn't even look at her, she started crying and hugged me, started saying she loves me... I felt bad, we had sex and went to sleep. This morning when I woke up and kissed her before I went to work, I didn't said I love You. I was waiting for her to say it. But she never did. So now I am writing about this in here coz I feel like shit... And don't know what to do anymore... should I just break up with her, or all of this is just in my head...
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2020.09.04 09:34 CharmingFrosting A message to myself and others who may need inspiration.

Warning.
 
This is long. It is a 39 year old life condensed into a number of pages. I wrote this for myself today to remind myself of who I am and to dump my thoughts as I suddenly have felt down the last few days due to several reasons.
 
These words are mostly raw cryptic ramblings of my life, very little editing just what I feel and think. I wanted to get it out and finished so I can let it go.
 
This is an anon account, I have a happy productive life, but I have struggled in the past with anxiety and depression. I have mostly conquered them, if you need inspiration, this may help you.
 
Otherwise I expect no one to read this, but if you do thank you for the time invested.
 
Dad, my very earliest memory is with you! I must have been 3 maybe 4? We were sitting under the Christmas tree. The room was dark, the tree was lit up blue, the tinsel sparkled, mother was so happy, a train raced on the tracks.
 
We grew up not poor, and not rich, but very comfortable. My dad was a hard worker, and my mom was a wonderful home maker, and worked when she could. We had a nice place to live; our family had hundreds of acres of farm land we visited daily. I had a sister, mom kept us clean and fed and loved us, dad made sure we had everything we needed. You two never fought, did not drink (most of our relatives where alcoholics), and were always home at night. We always had birthdays, Christmas, Halloween, vacations, I always knew I was very lucky and I was thankful growing up.
 
Mother never let me leave her site, she was worried, I understand, but I knew I grew up in a castle of sorts, I never learned the world as many do. I was shielded and protected always. My mom and I were close, dad became distant, we did not play much, or talk much, and he was stressed often. I always felt despair when I asked him to play with me and he was too tired.
 
I graduated from a vocational school, engineering drafting, I loved it, I had the best teacher in the world. Everyone was so proud. They all said how handsome I was, how mature I was, I was healthy, I thought about college. I wanted to be an aerospace engineer; they told me there was nothing to advance in aerospace so I looked no further since I had a good job right out the door (looking back what kind of advice is that from a recruiter?). I had hobbies, paintball, guns, my race car, friends; I was awkward so no girlfriend but life was great. My parents divorced, I stayed with my dad, and my sister went with my mom. She was close, I saw her almost daily.
 
Suddenly alone in my mind thinking about the world, my future, death? anxiety came, panic attacks, I hid it for months it kept getting worse, a friend had died, a co-worker had a heart attack in front of me, I thought something was wrong with my body, I was scared. An emergency room visit, I thought I was dying, they said you are perfectly healthy, you just have anxiety, I thought great! It will go away.
 
Two years pass, nonstop assault of my own mind against my body. Tremors, muscle spasms, heart pounding, my head spinning, I can’t leave the house, I can’t work, I can’t sit in peace for one moment of any day. My family says I’m lazy and don’t want to work or do anything with my life, to get it together.
 
Doctors did not help, medications were terrible, I could fall asleep standing up, therapy did not help, I tried with the resources I knew were available. I forced myself to work for a year, barely able to control my numb confused body. I lived in a camper, got my own apt, then I was homeless in a shelter, I was starving, in a city, I only knew the country growing up. I was so scared; my anxiety was off the charts, sitting watching tv with a hundred other homeless staring at me in my nice clothes while they were in rags. I got up and walked.
 
I followed the sun east, the way to my old home. It was only a 40 mile walk. I was exhausted, it was November, and Ohio is cold in November. I fell in a field next to the highway, I did not know if I could get up. My body was stiff, I thought in many years maybe a hunter would find my bones, my wallet, maybe my family would someday know what happened to their lazy son.
 
I got up; I thought I should at least die walking. A suicide ward, I was not suicidal I never wanted to give up, I wanted my old world back, but you let me stay, I explained to the doctor. He wanted to try something new, Gabitril I think it was called, normally used for seizures? Sure whatever let’s try it. I slept, I woke up, something was wrong? my body felt calm, I could think, my heart was not pounding, my arms and legs were not tingling and numb, I was me again, I had forgot what it felt like to feel “normal” I felt like I was born again.
 
I found out I only needed a minute dose, maybe 2mg a day to keep that switch flipped. They said I could be on disability and have government housing. No, I am me again; I can do better than that!
 
I had a crap job, burger king, I was the best burger flipper in the state, in my mind or at least I tried to be. My old landlord let me move back in. I could barely pay the bills, let alone pay back money I owed, but she knew I was trying. I got a better paying job, lifting thousands of lbs of steel a day 6 days a week sometimes 7. I was not strong. I had been starving for years after all, 115 maybe 120bs and 5ft10. I almost quit the first day; I had to have my mom turn my door knob so I could get into my apt. I’m not quitting, I’ll die trying. I discovered Motrin the next day.
 
I looked up my old friends, they were all doing well, college, military, family, I was still young maybe 23 or 24? I felt my life was wasted, I was behind and no chance to catch up. But I persisted, and regretful of those 3-4 years I lost to my mind.
 
I did not want to date, I did not want to waste another person’s time, what did I have to offer someone else? but yes, I was lonely. I kept working at the door factory; 2 years later I could work all day and not break a sweat. I was 160lbs now, best health of my life, I was strong, but I knew the job was a dead end and wanted to get back into drafting / engineering.
 
I met someone through a mutual friend in WOW. There was some sort of instant connection between us. As time went on we talked about everything you could imagine, we did not hide anything from each other, religion, goals, loves, foods, our deepest fears, regrets, rejection, views on the world, our travels, our faults, family. She accepted who I was, and I accepted who she was fully.
 
She supported me from a distance, always encouraging me. I wanted to be with her, I started working with my father, a tool and die engineer for the plastics industry. I worked two jobs for a long time, 10-12 hours at one, then as much as I could at the other, learning as much as I could about tooling design for extrusion and injection molding, programming and running EDMs, machining, welding and so on.
 
We eventually decided to meet each other, in the middle, we both drove 4 hours. She arrived first and waited for me, she was scared, worried I would turn and go home, she was a heavier woman over 300lbs I believe she once said, but that never mattered to me. We were both nervous, but within minutes we were talking like we had known each other our entire lives. We explored the town for days. When we went out to eat I was kind and polite with the waitress, I had been kind to her, I was just being myself, but as I looked up there was a sparkle in her eyes I will never forget. I knew she adored me.
 
We cuddled, watched movies, slept together, but did not have sex, I know we both wanted to, but I was trying to be a gentleman and I was so happy to be with her it did not matter, being with her was the most calming and happy moment in my life.
 
I wanted to stay with her so badly, but we had to go home to our jobs, and she had sisters and brothers with nieces and nephews she loved. I cried a moment when I left for home, but I knew we would see each other again.
 
We progressed, met each other more, she had a great government job. My job was great as well, learning more and more every day and it was something I truly enjoyed. My dad and I had not talked for years after he booted me out. He never understood the anxiety, but I forgave him in time as we worked together, it was not his fault, society did not know yet how terrible anxiety and panic attacks were. I learned so much, we talked every day, mostly about work, but I could tell he was proud of me.
 
She started using birth control, one day I got a call she was in the hospital in ICU. Her lungs were smothered in clots, she nearly died. The BC did not work well with her system. She was put on blood thinners. It took her months to recover.
 
My dad’s stomach hurt, he always had digestive issues, hemorrhoids and such. Years passed, no hernia, no stomach bugs. I was told my dad has stage 4 colon and liver cancer. My dad was very well off; he offered me everything if I took care of his mom.
 
I declined, Kristen and I had been together for years at this point, I wanted to move to be with her, I had learned so much I knew I could take my skills to other places and even work remotely for the existing company. I did not want to make a promise I could not keep so I declined his offer.
 
Kristen and I were supposed to visit Disney World with her entire family. My dad started chemo. I stayed behind with him. She called me almost daily on the trip, her lung condition was good, and she was taken off blood thinners and given a clean bill of health. They were rear ended in Atlanta, I was thankful they were OK.
 
We had a small fight. It was my fault; I was stressed about my dad, thinking about being very alone when he died. We knew it was only a matter of time. For the briefest moment in time I questioned our relationship, the distance suddenly hurt when it never had before, I wanted to be with her in Disney. I felt guilty for canceling the trip with them, and I was angry, it was my fault. I don’t remember my exact words but I think it was clear I suddenly questioned our being together. I hurt her needlessly I know it was the worst thing I ever did in my life.
 
I decided that night I could not ask her to leave her family behind, she was the world to her family, I knew when my dad passed, I would only have my mom, sister, and one nephew. I made the choice that night, I am going to tell her tomorrow how much I still love her, and I am going to move to be with her.
 
I was stung by a bee days before and took the day off to see my doctor, he said I may be becoming allergic. I went home to lie down with antibiotics. It was roughly noon, today was the day. I was building up the courage to call her and tell her how much I loved her, and that I was ready to look into moving to her state, that I was truly sorry about the day before and that it was not her fault. We both wanted it; we had been together for 6 years, never straying from each other, we were always there for each other. Even with the distance I was the happiest guy in the world knowing she was there. It was time.
 
As I lay in bed building myself up to call her my phone rang, it was her, she must be taking a break! She was laughing; I thought what a wonderful time to talk to her, I bet she was having a wonderful day and I was going to make it her happiest day ever. I realized suddenly that’s not laughter, and it was tears and crying, and then I realized it was not even her. The only words I heard, Kristen is dead. My heart dropped to a place I never knew it could go.
 
The autopsy, she had deep vein thrombosis, we knew about it after the lung condition, the accident dislodged the clots and they gathered in her heart over the course of the week. How is it that she was just taken off blood thinners a week or two before? How did I not suggest seeing a doctor after the accident, I’ve always considered myself to be very intelligent, but yet I failed to have knowledge of a dangerous condition for her? She had a massive heart attack in the motel in front of her family.
 
I was not with her; did she think of me in her last moments, did she give up because of our last conversation, did she know I still loved her? She took BC because of me that caused even more clots. What have I done? The sweetest most loving and tolerant person I have ever known in this world, not once did I ever hear her yell, or speak out in anger in all the time I knew her, and I hurt her, I felt I had killed her. It was my fault. Looking back, I know she would not have wanted me to feel that way no matter what happened, but at the time it I felt like the worst person in the world.
 
Never have I ever wanted to be gone from this world, but that day I was very, very, close. I had fought my anxiety and depression over those years that I knew her, and I had it fully under control for the last several; I was not even on meds for the last 5 years. I rebuilt my life from scratch. She accepted me, and supported me from a distance in any way she could, she was always available to me no matter what time of day. It was rare as we were happy and content, but we would drop anything in the world for each other if we knew the other was hurting for some reason.
 
We sacrificed being together for our careers, and family. Why do we try so hard when everything can be changed in an instant? My own body and mind turns on me when I’m young, that’s OK, I fought it and rebuilt, I met someone wonderful, I was happy, she was happy, we both worked so hard but now, that is gone in an instant too. I was never religious but I always thought there must be something, maybe some reason to our lives, if we tried hard and did good in our life good things would come to us right?
 
Her family was deeply religious, I know it was maybe their way to cope, at the time they seemed OK with her passing at the funeral, I was devastated. She was in heaven to them, a much better place than this world. In my mind we would never see each other again; she would never get to have a child of her own like she always dreamed of. I felt the world had robbed us both of so much, when we both tried so hard to be good people and do the right things with our families and jobs first.
 
I discovered reddit in that time. I researched everything I could on beliefs, religions and science. My boss gave me a layoff he knew I could not function and worked with me; I did not work for almost a year. I was miserable, trying to find reason to it all.
 
I am now agnostic? I finally let it all go, I am content believing anything is possible, and we really cannot know if there is anything more, or a purpose to life. To me it doesn’t matter. The simple fact is that we exist, for one reason or another, or maybe no reason at all. Maybe we are alive, maybe it’s a game, maybe it’s a dream it really doesn’t matter.
 
I am happy to be here, Life is great! I wish we can all experience life in the best way we can, why live in misery, we may as well be happy or strive to be happy. I defeated depression. I love helping others and being a good person. I don’t think there is any intrinsic reason to be good, but why allow others to suffer that may not be content or aware of the world in such a way. Not that my way is correct, but I believe it to be for myself at least.
 
Almost exactly a year later my dad died. What I feared happened, I was even more alone. I went back to work. He was the sole engineer at the company for 30 years; I took over his work by request. It was scary, I was terrified honestly, but I managed to do extremely well and took over the department. We designed and built tools that we never had before, made a great number of improvements and experimented with new ideas many of which worked great. The greatest lesson my dad taught me in our last years together was that it was OK to fail, and that we should learn from those failures. I was no longer scared.
 
He left very little in the way of a will, by default I believe most things should have went to my sister and I. Family and friends however swept in while I was buried in grief, a year later I offered to buy my dads house from relatives. They said sure, wait tell summer. Summer came, the house was already sold for 1/3 its value. My dad always said he wanted to burn the house to the ground if he left to live elsewhere or died if I did not want it. Now I see why, he put his life into it, kept it immaculate. It is now one of the worst dumps on the road.
 
My grief was still very overpowering as time went on. My hair once all dark brown now had grey in my beard, I lost a lot of muscle I previously had and got fat instead. However I had a renewed confidence in myself, I felt I had purpose, that I was doing well in life and that I could offer help to others and I wanted to share my time with someone once again. I realized Kristen would want me to go on and be happy no matter what.
 
I lived in an extremely small town so I tried POF. I began talking with someone there very quickly. We talked a great deal for a number of weeks. She was hesitant to meet in person; she had several failed relationships; I gave her room and time. We finally decided to meet at her friend’s house for dinner. She barely talked; maybe 10 words the entire time, her friends did most of the talking for her. I was OK with that; I can be shy sometimes too.
 
We began meeting more often, she had no car, no job, she lived with her friends and family, so I always had to drive 40+ minutes to see her. She was fun to be around, very smart, and pretty, no drugs, did not smoke, and she was a great cook! I noticed narcissistic? traits early on through our conversations, and when together. I chalked it up to her being hurt from previous relationships.
 
Example 1. I drove 40 minutes after work to help a one of her drug addict friends move furniture. I arrived; they were not there. I waited 30+ minutes in my truck while she sat inside her mom’s house with AC. She finally came out to sit with me to wait longer. Still no friend, I said I need to go home, I was exhausted after work, tired, and hungry, and that it was not right to ask someone for help moving and then not be available. She got out of the truck, slammed the door and went back into the house with her nose in the air saying I was an unreasonable piece of shit.
 
Nearly a year passed, I felt we should break up, she insisted that we would do better if we lived together and not so far away from each other. I bought a trailer for us in a park to try it out. She had gone through 3 jobs at this time, always fault of the job as to why she was fired or quit. She drove my vehicles, her friends moved in with us after losing their place. I paid all the bills, bought nearly all the food. I bought us a new bed, worked on my own vehicles, and the trailer for improvements.
 
I wanted to break up again, I had been sleeping at the opposite end of the bed for a long time. One night she was begging for sex, I gave in, she could not get pregnant after all. A month later she is waking up every morning puking. Her best friend and husband (I paid for their wedding) knows somethings not right. Yep she is pregnant, tells me on my Birthday. I did not know what to think, the trailer was small, not suited for a family. I had never expected to have a child. The entire pregnancy I worked my ass off, overtime nearly every night, worked from home, bought a car since all I had were trucks. I paid for nearly everything, she worked part time at a pizza place for a while.
 
Example 2. Every night I came home the place was trashed, garbage everywhere, nothing ever kept clean. I am a very neat and organized person; it was one of my battles with depression. I changed that about my life many years ago. I tried to keep up with it between working, but she was always behind me tearing down what I accomplished. I could not count the times I was screamed at and yelled at over so many different subjects, but it was all hormones, right? One day I come home, there is an 85lb cane corso in the living room. It is her new love, an abused and neglected dog. To this day she is extremely aggressive, she is better now, but will kill anyone that is not family. I cannot tell how much damage this dog has done over the years.
 
My son was born, my life changed, I knew I could do better, her friends moved, there was more room now, but that trailer was a temporary trial for a relationship, not a home. I started looking for a new job since my current job was extremely stressful, I loved it, but our company went from having 6 people in our tooling department and 1 salesman to having 2 in my tooling department (all the others retired) and 3 salesman. I worked nonstop; new owners did not understand the company.
 
I found a new job that I interviewed for, nearly identical work for a smaller company. Their engineer was retiring, and they could not find a replacement. We had just found a nice house I was interested in buying. I told the company I needed a few months for closing to happen. They said they would continue to look for a replacement.
 
3 Months passed, I closed on the house fully in my name, it was a process, I had 0 credit, I had never had a car loan, or credit card in my life, they were able to verify credit through landlords and utility services. A day after closing I received an email, the company asked if I was still available, they had still not found a replacement. I took the job, it was hard leaving my existing job, my dad worked there my entire life, they were almost like family, but I did what was needed for my own wellbeing.
 
The new job has been wonderful, there over 4 years now, I alone make nearly double the local annual household income. We have always been comfortable, I buy old cars and fix them to drive, the house payment is less than ¼ of my monthly income. I feel lucky the house is great, it is old, 101 years old, but the old owners kept it very well maintained, additions + garage built in the 50s and early 80s, it had a new roof, new windows, modern wiring, very well insulated, new furnace/AC, modern plumbing both supply and waste. The location is on the edge of a small city, not the best city in the world, but the local neighborhood is extremely nice and quiet, mostly older retired folk. We have everything you need within 5-15 minutes, mall, hospitals, fire dept with an ambulance 4 houses down, my job is less than 30 minutes away. It is not the country I grew up in, but it is a nice compromise with a reasonable half acre and nothing but a church and woods behind us!
 
My sons mother swore having a house would change things. That she would be better at keeping up with her own messes, not letting her things go moldy in the fridge, keeping up with her dog and having a son meant she would not yell so much. 4 years later nothing has changed it is only worse.
 
I work hard, I support her and my son in every way I know how. Your crafts? Your baking? Photography? Gardening? Keto dieting? Gym memberships? So much I have given you, unfinished crafts are piled to the walls, you never bake anymore, your 900$ camera sits idle, the garden our neighbor plowed for you sat idle both years, you even yelled at him for planting in it to share with you, he used too much room, never weeded, your raised beds I bought for you for mother’s day a year ago have weeds taller than I stand, you scream at me when I finally take them down, I did ask your permission right, oh I’m sorry there was a tomato growing somewhere in there. your Keto diet, we all ate different meals, your keto was expensive, I supported you though, you were doing so well I felt happy for you, but you gave up, that’s OK, your weight never bothered me, but I loved you were trying to be healthier for yourself and our son. Your gym membership, you could not get one, you did not have a credit card, you used mine. You never went for a year, I asked for you to cancel it, it took nearly another year and me threatening to call about fraud. You never payed me back though you said you would, and I was an asshole for asking.
 
Example 3. Early last summer I realized there was absolutely no doubt in my mind that our relationship was over. We were at the fair, there was a magic show. You were on the bleachers with your niece, I was behind with our son, the music was loud. he kept covering his ears. Daddy, daddy, it is too loud, I tapped your shoulder 3 or 4 times you kept shrugging me off, I was annoying you and disturbing you from watching. I was trying to tell you our son was upset. You gave me a dirty look, I took him to look at tractors, we had such a wonderful time exploring and looking at the machines he loved it! Someone is screaming at me? Why is someone screaming at me? I took him away from you? We were watching the show? No, you and your niece were watching a show. You screamed at me in front of hundreds of people for taking my son away from something that disturbed him. Never ever will I let my son be harmed needlessly. I gave him back to you, we’re not married, you have custody of course, and I walked away, you told me I was garbage for ruining the show, and I was a shit dad for walking away from you. I sat in the hot car for nearly 2 hours while you enjoyed yourself.
 
I never expected much of you, only to keep your possessions in check, and to keep up with dishes and one of two bathrooms. I love cleaning and organizing, but your items are piled to the walls, you scream at me if I try to organize them with or without you. Our bed is ruined, you bled all over it, your dog has it covered in mud and hair. I sleep on the floor of my own house in the living room. Honestly, it is comfortable, it’s great for my back. I do not mind, but I have no where to put my clothes, I can’t walk in the bedroom, its piled to the walls with your possessions. I built shelves in the basement for unnecessary items that are not often used, It looks like Walmart everything neat and organized in Totes yes I have a lot of items myself, I love my hobbies, and memories but I do keep them organized very well!
 
My co worker stopped over to work on his car early this summer since I have a garage full of tools and a lift, he was amazed how clean and well organized the outside of the house was and the garage with all of my auto tools and woodworking tools, he needed to use the bathroom. I was embarrassed to let him in. He saw your messes, he asked what was up. I finally told on you I am sorry. Everyone outside of family believed things were great! I showed them your crafts, the baking you used to do, the photographs you could take, I bragged about your Italian cooking, that you were finally got back to working again as a nurse.
 
No not anymore, I started talking, you broke me, finally. I told my boss, I told our neighbor who works for CPS. I called CPS on my own home asking for advice, explaining the living situation, our fighting, the fact that you have threatened to kill yourself multiple times in the past, once you and my son both. The said to get an attorney that the situation did not sound immediately dangerous.
 
You had all summer to move out, You claimed our son on taxes, you received stimulus money for you and him both, you work at a nursing home, covid ? you worked overtime, got bonuses. Oh is that a new chevy traverse in the driveway? Does it come with a kitchen? It’s nearing winter, I cannot be in this house with you all winter. You need to be gone.
 
Speaking of covid? Remember it was real scary early on? Our state shut down non-essential business. I took a week off work, our company stayed open, I protested, we had 3 people extremely ill just weeks before, one had pneumonia, he came back fine, one day he left on his own to see a doctor, the next day were told he’s on a ventilator. None of them tested positive for covid, but it was just before the scare, who knows? Either way I was a (other name for cat) you told me, yet I was trying to protect myself, our son, and you who could spread it to elderly in your facility.
 
We argued at some point weeks later, you spit in my face trying to infect me, then you find out the opposite wing of your facility has covid cases, you freak out worried about dying and infecting our son. You say I’m an asshole and a piece of shit for somehow not caring when you told me.
 
This is where we are now, last week a $3500 retainer fee, I will soon be looking for partial custody. I suspect you are bi polar and a narc. You have never got help for yourself, you have admitted to me that you need help, your friends and family say you need help, I have tried for years to support and help you. They are glad I deal with you and not them anymore. I am tired, I am sorry, I can’t do it no more. I have hundreds of photos, I have audio evidence of you telling me I’m not allowed to clean your messes, that you have no plans to move out. I don’t believe it is going to go well for you. I don’t want to hurt you, I never have I want us all to be happy and healthy, together we are not. It must end. It would be cheaper to pay your down payment and fees for a new place, but I think I need to protect myself from you. I don’t trust you.
 
I was busy all summer, starting my own side business with a friend, a machine shop and automotive shop, we spent months cleaning it and moving tools and machines, cutting trees, clearing brush, making the yard great for me and our son to play in. building Legos with him, riding bikes, playing outdoors, and video games. I helped two unfortunate friends move to our state, they were unable to get the apt they had planned to live in, an eviction was in process, they stayed at my home for less than three weeks. You were pissed, I don’t care I trusted them, your friends lived with us for nearly a year, and then your sister and mom for nearly a year as well. Who paid all the bills anyway? How could two friends of mine, one with disability for income, and another with no current job find a way to move out in 2 weeks? Yet you can’t find a way in 2-3 years?
 
I like being productive, Everyone at my workplace knows me as the happy guy, always cheerful, I feel they respect me, and trust me, they depend on the work I do. I have plans, I want to pay the house off while my son is young, I have never traveled, I want to travel! Covid was scary this summer, it drove me to start the side business, if normal jobs fail I can work on my own at worst case to get by, I know if I invest I could start my own extrusion company someday. I can design and build tooling from scratch, I just need an EDM and an extruder, my old retired boss has a huge building full of equipment and material.
 
We have never cheated on each other to my knowledge even though we consider ourselves single for years now. I am loyal to the end, but I must admit the last few weeks I ventured onto POF, looking. Summer is almost over, I have put so much down for so long, I come home and work to avoid our fights or being around you. It means I spend less time with my son as well when I avoid you. I am tired, I want to relax, I want to enjoy life with someone again. Please leave so that I can move on with my life.
 
Dating sites suck, I can’t see anyone anyway, who wants to date or talk to someone in my position, not until she is gone at least. I used to have so many online friends back when I gamed, I had many female friends and male, we used to all chat so much and game as well. We all moved on, I only talk to a couple now and they are generally not around. A happy conversation would be great! On to reddit we go.
 
I message a few that seem interesting. Male and female alike, a new friend is a wonderful thing. I talk to some, It is nice, a fresh perspective, new ideas and lives.
 
One I talked to is different, very well composed, seems smart and happy, but extremely far away, that is great, this is for friends after all. I enjoyed the talks, days later I was not expecting some words, or a picture, she honestly is beautiful, I had no idea. I maybe misunderstood, but I had to make it clear who was still here with me.
 
I told the situation just in case there was something else in either of our minds, she became quiet for a few days, I told her I was sorry and maybe I misunderstood, It was OK, we had just met, no loss right. I gave her room never expecting to hear from her again.
 
I honestly do not know the last time I felt depressed, since I had a son there is no room for it in my life, only progress and going forward. Always a busy bee helping others as I can.
 
That next day I felt depressed, wow, I forgot what it felt like, it had been 7-8+ years since I felt something like that. It was scary, I slept it off. Should I have kept quiet about my son’s mom? Maybe we could have continued talking, but that is selfish, my priority is to not hurt someone else. I admit somehow there was an attraction, I was curious to know more.
 
She messaged me back days later, saying she was willing to continue talking. What a smile that brought to me. It has been great the few small chats we have had. I do not know that there is anything more than that, probably not. I know she is busy, but I have not heard much else from her. Is it bad to wonder though?
 
My real profile is mostly DIY and gaming related; I keep personal things separate. I did glance at her profile and realized she has some great talents and hobbies, also difficulties with relationships as many of us have. I feel guilty for taking a look, so I write this in some small part for her as well, if she is curious to read at her leisure. Will it change anything if she reads it, probably not, and that is fine, at least I feel she has had a chance to know me a little better if she so chooses.
 
I know I am at the end of what I want to say, it is not elegant for sure, it’s probably a mess, I am not a writer after all. I do feel better getting some of this out there is so much more, but the intertubes are only so big! I needed to start preparing notes for the attorney and I feel some of this will help to organize. It’s not a path I ever wanted to take, I had plans and hopes for us as a family but that will never be, I am scared for my sons mom, I worry she wont get help, I know my son needs us both, and we both love him. Her health is getting bad, her weight is out of control, she can barely get up or walk at this point. She was doing so well, I don’t want me son to lose her, he loves her. I can’t help her anymore though.
 
In the end my priority is my Son, he deserves a happy mother and father, I hope no matter what happens that he will understand someday. who knows what these next weeks will bring, it is only a matter of time before she learns what is happening? How will she react? I hope I do not have to call the police, I fear for her and my son.
 
Regardless of all that is happening, I do feel happy in my life, I expect good things to come, or I will at least die trying for them. I feel fortunate for all that I have, what I have been through, what I have learned. I continue to grow as a person, I try to not be jaded by the bad experiences, there is always good, as sour as my relationship ended up with my sons mom, it honestly was probably the best thing that happened in my life. I grew into the man I am today because of it, before then I felt I was still a child.
 
My hope someday thinking about this is to double if not triple this entry with new experiences in life, I am sure it is only time before I can meet someone else that I can share happy times with, someone that I can trust and be there for. I want to watch my son grow, I want to watch his Mom get the help she needs, meet someone else and be happy to watch him grow as well. She is truly a wonderful mom and person when she wants to be, my son should be able to be proud of us both.
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2020.08.31 17:25 concretecreationsnwa Why Should you Visit a Granite Countertop Showroom before Selecting a Granite Countertop in Bentonville

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2020.08.31 13:18 RustDyke Love and Loneliness: When Your Love Made Me Human (Bit of personal love story, bit of current venting)

I'm in a sort of gay melancholy mood and I think I just need to put my thoughts onto something, so here's a story I never feel like I can tell anyone. I'm sure it's gonna be pretty long so no hard feelings if you ain't got the time or attention for it, I just need to write this. Hopefully, I at least write it well enough to be compelling on its own.
Probably some CW, generally heavy feels
I don't think we realized that when we met we were still children. Twenty years of life seems like a long time, you feel like you've already grown all that you would, but it's funny how long just a few more years can be. I never imagined meeting someone on a dating site would turn into this, that one flirty message you decided to send me would change our lives so profoundly. You didn't care that I didn't have a home, that I was just staying on yet another couch of whoever would take me in for a spell, or that I had no life to really speak of. Despite everything I thought wrong with me you drove an hour just to meet me. I tried dressing up for you. I put on a skirt, tried my best with my makeup, whatever I could to look good enough. I'd never been on a date before and in the end, I feel like I looked like a scared, mousy stray of a girl playing at dress-up. Yet your brimming smile upon seeing me for the first time made my heart race. You told me how cute I looked and I'm certain my face turned red as I nervously stared at my ratty sneakers. The entire car ride I was quiet. I didn't know how to talk to people, I didn't have the confidence to say much, but I hope you knew I was captivated by you. You spoke so expressively and with such an uplifting joy in every word, every laugh, every look you gave me. It was wonderfully infectious. It's hard to describe the sensation of feeling the beginning of something you've never felt before and without knowing all that would come after.
Though it feels so long ago I still remember that wonderful little date. You brought me to your home, or rather, your chosen home. Your relationship with your parents was complicated too, that was something we could share with each other already. You showed me your gluttonous goof of a guinea pig and excitedly showed me some of your favorite music videos since you shared a lot of music with me when we were still first speaking online. Those artists are still among my favorites, I'll have you know. Your taste in music was always fantastic and you opened me up to so many genres I had never even dipped my toes into before. We giggled over memes and vines like a couple of dumb idiots and discussed what sort of date things we might do for the rest of the day. Oh right, and then we were on each other so suddenly and aggressively. It's kinda funny looking back on it. I'd never even had sex before that. Well I did, but I've learned not to count what happened to me as a teenager. As far as I'm concerned, that was my first time. I think I remember cuddling afterward more vividly. Lying in a bed for the first time in years, and also in the arms of someone that I was already beginning to have feelings for. I'd never been held before for as far back as I can remember, not even by family. I think I could have died happily right there.
Once we were finally up and dressed we decided to make dinner and watch a movie. I had recently found out I had a talent for cooking when the person I was staying with at the time gave me access to a kitchen and real food, so I thought I'd try to impress you with a meal. We had to drive around a bit to collect all the ingredients but it was worth it to see you enjoy the yakitori skewers I made, though I admit I was terrified I'd screw it up since I had only started learning to cook. We watched Howl's Moving Castle afterward since we both loved Studio Ghibli films and I had yet to see your favorite one. It got late and we both knew you weren't driving me all the way back to where I was staying. Waking up next to you in the morning was an exhilarating warmth as uplifting as the sun that shone through the window. You greeted my sleepy face with a kiss and we decided we were both lazy and wanted to stay in bed together for a while longer.
You drove to pick me up and bring me back to spend time with you in your city as often as you could and it was the thing I looked forward to most every week. I met your friends and saw all your favorite places in town. We ate breakfast at your favorite restaurant, drove around taking turn sharing songs we thought we would both enjoy, and would end the day drinking on the porch with your friends or sneaking off to all sorts of places to enjoy one another like a couple of dumb teenagers. I guess in all honesty we were only past our teens by less than a year. Lord knows I didn't know what I was doing so I'm thankful you're the sort of person to say "no no no, this is how you do it". I remember that one night at one of your friend's house playing Mario kart together. I was reading hilariously bad fanfiction aloud and we were all dying of laughter; we could hardly breathe. You were embarrassed by the sort of laugh you made when you could catch your breath. I teased you for it but honestly, it's one of my favorite things in the world. It's hard for me to recall on the spot what anyone's laugh sounds like. Even with people in my day to day life right now, I have to think about it. But with yours, I can recall it in an instant, no matter how long it's been since I've heard it.
Of course in the stereotypical lesbian fashion, we ended up moving in together a little over a month after we met. You were moving to another city for school and your dad was going to let you stay on a property he owned but never had the time to get up to code to sell. I still don't like your dad and I know you don't either. He's controlling but also oblivious in a terrible and uncomfortable way. He wanted you to share the house with his girlfriend who was closer to your age than his. Wanted to keep both the people he felt entitled to control in one place I guess. Of course, you hated the idea and needed a way out from that arrangement, and, well, I didn't have any place to live or any place to go other than back to a life of vagrancy. Just the two of us in a small little house in a neighborhood full of trees right by the university and downtown. Your dad was terrible at home improvement so the house was kinda janky. I mean the shower was in the bedroom for fuck's sake and I'll never understand why. But we had our windows full of sunshine, our little grassy front yard, and a swinging bench on the porch to sit on together. Oh, and a park to go to after we'd get drunk so we could swing on the swingset and also Chinese food and taco bell in easy driving distance. Two bean burritos and a side of nachos with queso were what you got every single time. I thought it was funny that you ate from there so often but never changed up your order, but you're the sort of person to know exactly what you like. So we'd eat takeout and watch pretty much every gay show we could find from Legend of Korra to Steven Universe to Orange is the New Black (back before it went where it did). I can't help but look fondly back on those days. I'd never been happy in my life before then. I'd never felt loved before you. After growing up with a mother who never showed me love, a father who hurt me out of frustration, years of homelessness without any friends and the scars left by all I had to do and all that was done to me just to continue an existence that I resented, that deep void of desolation that haunts me still-- to go from all of that to our happy and carefree days together, I don't think I could ever feel that comfort in the same way again.
But such young and naive feelings rarely last. Your father didn't care for our relationship. He constantly asked you when you'd find a boy no matter how much you tried to tell him we were together. Half a year after we moved into that house he kicked us out without warning, saying he needed to start back up on his renovations. He invited you to move in with him and expected me to do the same with my own parents. But he never bothered to learn a single thing about me. He didn't know I had nowhere to go back to. But you did, and you did everything you could to find a place for us, but we had to concede so much to make it work with how little money and resources we had since your father cut you off from any help as long as you stayed with me. We moved into an awful house infested with bedbugs and far away from anything. We had to go in on the lease with your assistant manager, a gross and predatory man almost twice our age who saw an opportunity to take advantage of us both. We barely made enough money to make ends meet. I started working in an illegal brothel out of worry we'd lose what little we had left, until I almost got disappeared walking home one night. Luckily that didn't happen, and luckily I just ended up working multiple jobs every day after I found a way to get downtown reliably, even if the commute was long. But the strain of this life broke us down and soured our feelings. You felt trapped in our circumstances and I was wracked with guilt knowing that you sacrificed so much just to care for me. You lost your dad's financial support, you quit school to work at the department store full-time. This wasn't the life you wanted. I know you began to resent me for it. We were young and the comfort I could provide was flawed and sometimes disregardful. It was still a better life than I had before so I failed to see the extent of your own pain and misery. I think even now with how much I think I've improved as an adult, I doubt anything I could have done could have saved us in those circumstances.
So we went our separate ways. Not because it made us happy but because we felt that we had to. I moved to another city and tried to start my life over as a single and independent adult. I don't think I had a very good start due to how poorly adjusted I still was as a person. You were the start of my learning what it means to be a person and what it meant to have relationships of any kind with others, and that had only been a year of learning after a lifetime of damage. I didn't know what it meant to be a good friend or partner and it took many more years to realize what it meant to be truly considerate and responsible in how my presence and actions affect others. No matter how much I feel I've improved, I think I'll always be learning as we all are, but at least you gave me that push to start. In all honesty, the deep feelings of hurt and loneliness I felt after we left each other's lives is what pushed me to consciously pursue being a better person despite how much I believed I would never be anything more than a burden of a broken person. I learned to make friends, I learned to socialize, I learned to be confident in myself, I learned to truly consider my own feelings and the feelings of others, to transition from letting my feelings of paralyzing self-loathing and worthlessness damage myself and the people around me to trying my best to truly do right by myself and others and to be my own person. I had confidence and so many friends who admired who I was in a way I never could have imagined. To this day I still find it so natural to make such human connections wherever I go.
We eventually reconnected a year after we parted. We had mutual friends so I suppose it was inevitable. It was a slow process to feel comfortable around one another again, but we became friends again and we came to place so much trust in one another after we both saw our efforts to better ourselves and our lives. Getting back together never came up much. We had a mostly unspoken understanding that we weren't ready for that and that our lives were still moving different directions. We weren't ready to be in a relationship with anyone. Friendship was all we could have but you became my closest and most trusted friend even if it was often at a distance. We both tried dating others-- or more like we fell into relationships that never lasted long as we realized that we weren't ready our partners weren't right for us. Eventually, I moved out of the state entirely, enamored by the call of music and the punk scene of another city while you stayed put and went to school to become a mechanic. You went back into things with your first love from before we ever met after your own long process of mending things and becoming friends again. We were both living our own lives and as much as I missed your presence I was happy that we were. I was happy to see you grow and achieve the things you pursued.
It's been over six years since we met. For so much of that time I genuinely felt better being on my own without a partner. I never felt ready to emotionally commit to someone else knowing what that really meant. Sometimes it was because I didn't feel in a good enough place to put my share of effort into a relationship, sometimes it was because there was no opportunities for it being a lesbian in a music social scene outside of lgbt circles. That's still where I am now, honestly. It's kinda funny with how many potential relationships I let go before I moved here because I wasn't in the right place mentally or emotionally. For the first time now I feel able to give my love to someone, able to put forth the sort of effort and consideration I've been working towards all this time and there's not really anyone in my life who even dates women other than the men in my life. Honestly the heteronormative... well, norm, it's been both frustrating and lonely. But I suppose it's more than just that. It's hard to open up to and place my trust in anyone the way I have to you during all these years. I feel trapped in a torrent of swirling thoughts as I try to grasp my feelings. When I try to imagine what a relationship with another woman would even look like I can only think of you. I dream of moments of intimacy and silliness, of joy and sadness, of waking up with someone in my arms, of all the things that make my heart stir with such warm sensation-- I can only picture you. Is it because you were the only person I ever genuinely had such deep feelings for? Is it because I can't get past how deep an imprint that period of change left on everything I am today? Or is it because I'm still in love with you? I'm afraid to answer that question myself knowing how painful it could be.
Fuckin hell, this ended up being a whole ass chapter. If you actually read on this, geez, I really appreciate you. I hope you enjoyed my writing. All of this is directly from my heart but I wanted to make it into more of a writing piece than a stream of consciousness but I don't know how well that turned out with how tired I am with it now being morning and such.So this has all been on my mind for a while now. Since the start of this year I guess. It was difficult enough to sort through these feelings of mine as is but now the person this is about is moving up to where I live.
The old love she reconnected with-- they were planning their immediate lives together and suddenly the old love announced her plans to move to a completely different state to continue schooling. She tends to be capricious like that but she didn't really give my friend much of a reason past "because I want to" after how much they had invested in being together and I know that's shattered my friend's heart. She's expressed interest in moving up to where I am before and now seems more set on doing it now that she doesn't have a reason to stay where she is. It's not to be with me, but because she wants to live somewhere other than the place she's been living for her entire life and she's enamored with the city I'm in and hopes to get a job as a mechanic here and get solid footing for her next step in life. I'm happy to help her move up here-- we've both become so self-reliant that I have no fear of us spiraling into codependence of any kind. But with my feelings for her already coming back to the surface of my mind and heart before this even became a plan-- it's just weird timing. I don't want to bank on us getting back together. I don't want to treat this like us getting back together. She's moving here for herself, not for me, and I wouldn't have it any other way. But... I hesitate to tell her how I feel or even openly acknowledge it myself. Even if I do have feelings for her I don't know what to do with them. I don't want to put her in any sort of position and I have no idea if she feels anything for me anymore, other than platonic friendship or if something between us could ever happen again, or if this is just me being hung-up on just wanting to share my life with someone again.
But no matter how down wistful and heartsick these complicated feelings make me, I'll push forward because this is something only I can answer for myself. No matter what happens we'll move on and no matter in what form I want us to walk forward together. I already feel better after writing all of this. Things will be okay.
submitted by RustDyke to actuallesbians [link] [comments]


2020.08.29 18:37 cynthua I am 19 years old and I make $0/$43,000 as a student in Canada

I know y'all are tired of student diaries but I hope mine will be an exception! Explanation for what the hell is going on with my income below. Also, everything listed is in Canadian dollars.

Section One: Assets and Debt

Assets:
Retirement Balance: $3500 (RRSP book cost)
Savings Balance: $13,000 (TFSA book cost)
Other Savings: I don't know the value of my savings (see below for explanation)
Checking Balance: $1500
Debt:
Credit Card: $0
Student Loans: $26,500 (I am not spending any of this money and have invested it instead)
*Savings explanation: I don't actually know how much money I have. Since Canada made it illegal for minors to hold stocks years ago, my savings have been in investments in accounts under my mom's name. My mom pays the income tax on these investments and my dad manages them extremely well, which is very kind of them. My best estimate is that the amount of cash that has been plugged into these stocks over time is ~$30,000, and I have no idea what interest has been accrued. I understand this is a situation that may seem like financial abuse or control, but I have complete confidence in my parents that they have my best interests at heart and that they will relinquish my assets and any income they generated to me when I finish my bachelor's degree. They have a good track record in this regard because they did the exact same thing for my older sister.

Section Two: Income

My income is difficult to explain because I don't think of it in months, I think of it in school years, and since I'm living at home this year because of online school, I don't really have major monthly expenses. I will try my best to break it down in a way that makes sense.
The "$0/$43,000" thing in the title is due to the fact that I technically do not make any yearly income according to the government, but in terms of actual money I am receiving, it's about $43,000.
"Yearly Income that the CRA Can Do Something About":
Usually I have a summer job, but they let everyone go. The good news is that due to labour laws, they paid me about $5,000 of backpay. Yay!
Because I was laid off, I've also gotten $14,000 of CERB.
"Yearly Income that the CRA Can't Do Anything About":
I am getting about $8500 in RESP payout and $11,500 in student loans this year.
I am receiving $11,000 in scholarships this year. These apply directly to my tuition and I can claim the rest, so my take-home is about $4,500. I'm possibly getting another $7,500 in scholarships, but I won't know until much later this year.
I tutored for a bit and sold some stuff, making $300.
TOTAL TAKE-HOME INCOME THIS YEAR: $43,800

Section Three: Expenses

Rent, utilities, car, insurance: Thanks Mom and Dad! Usually I live on campus but my university has gone online.
Retirement contribution: $1000 to my RRSP every year
Savings contribution: $6000 to my TFSA every year
Investment contribution: Literally any extra money I have goes into my investments. I don't do a percentage or anything like that. This year I imagine I'll be contributing at least $30,000.
Cellphone: $186 per year (prepaid phone plan)
Subscriptions: $5 a month for Apple Music. My sister pays for our family's Netflix.
Pet expenses: I have a snail, it's very low maintenance.
Regular therapy: $175 a week.

Daily Diary (August 22-28):

Day 1 (Saturday):
Daily Total: $0
Day 2 (Sunday):
Daily Total: $0
Day 3 (Monday):
Daily Total: $0
Day 4 (Tuesday):
Daily Total: $0
Day 5 (Wednesday):
Daily Total: $42
Day 6 (Thursday):
Daily Total: $0
Day 7 (Friday):
Daily Total: $175 (before $70 in payback from my boyfriend)

Reflection:

Weekly Total: $147
The sushi on Friday really upped the total, and I don't normally buy clothes, so this isn't a very typical week for me, but it does reflect the trend in my spending this summer. Since I'm not going anywhere, a lot of my spending has just been on ordering food delivery and that kind of thing (which has resulted in some interesting adventures), as well as Sephora purchases. I'm expecting my spending to go way down with the start of the school year, which is in two weeks, so I'm not super concerned about the amount of money I'm dropping. All in all, it was a decent week, and I'm hoping my resolution to not be such a sad sack will actually yield results, especially with school coming up as I said, though I think I've had a very nice summer regardless. I've volunteered or worked full time every summer since I was 13, so this is the first time I've ever had such a long time to laze around, and it's been a good change of pace, even if it did get boring by the end. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed looking a little into my life!
submitted by cynthua to MoneyDiariesACTIVE [link] [comments]


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https://preview.redd.it/zrmen4hjwyj51.jpg?width=275&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=3de586d21f7bef85ee02e6480490e3df2f8d4880
submitted by IdolA29Augl to u/IdolA29Augl [link] [comments]


2020.08.28 17:43 RowanB1917 Please, Reddit, Help Me Find My Daughter

My daughter ran away three days ago, and I don’t know where else to turn. Reddit, I need your help. The police aren’t interested and my wife thinks she’s back home. I know she’s still out there somewhere.
She’s six-years old. She has dark chocolate eyes that seem huge, especially when she looks at things she’s interested in. Her hair seems black from a distance, but, if you get up close, it’s really the deepest brunette you’ve ever seen, and it has these gentle curls in it that fall to her lower back. She’s 116 centimetres tall (or 3’8” in American), and the last time I saw her, she was in her mom’s club dress, a low-cut silver dress that went to her knees.
Her favorite food is spaghetti, but no meatballs. And she loves ice cream. She’s been gone for three days. I don’t think she can survive much longer on her own.
I (M36) met my wife (F32), Anna, about fourteen years ago at a bar. She and I hit it off very well. We were always into the same things, rarely fought, and enjoyed each other’s company. About two years after we started dating, we moved in together.
She was everything I ever wanted in a woman. Beautiful, funny, smart as a whip, and the sex was incredible! I had been with women before, but she just...It’s like she anticipated what I needed, knew how I felt, and was ready with something new and exciting every time.
Anna was very...experimental, in many aspects of her life. From the bedroom to the kitchen to work, she always liked to try new things. It was one of the reasons I fell in love with her. After a year of living together, I popped the question, we got engaged, and the rest is history.
Well, almost. We have a daughter, Elle, who is six. Or, she should be. I don’t know how to describe this.
Elle was born perfect. She had dark brown eyes and a head of dark hair from the moment she was born. Everyone always joked how she would become a model somewhere in the States and forget her parents. I mean, sure, I’m no supermodel, but I’m decent-looking and Anna is gorgeous. Elle wouldn't leave me behind. And she certainly wouldn't leave her mother. She's always holding onto Anna, trying on her clothes, following her everywhere like a shadow.
I don’t know where Elle got her looks from, honestly. My mother asked me a few times to get a paternity test, just to be sure, but I never wanted to. After all, whether Elle was biologically mine or part of her mother’s experiments with other men, she was still my daughter. She came from my wife. I cared for her since before she was born, and I love her with all my heart.
The problem is, raising kids these days, with all the social media and pressure to be famous...I don't know what I'm doing. Elle has video games. She can use her mother's tablet or our phones with permission. Anna and I tried to get her to read from a young age. I think we probably have a thousand books in our house, scattered in every room. I read to her every night before she goes to sleep. I've done it since she was in the womb.
But it's hard. I can't isolate her from the world. And she seems to be growing up so fast.
A few weeks ago, Elle and I got into an argument. She was spending so much time trying on makeup and putting on her mother's revealing clothes (Anna and I often went to adult clubs on our weekends out, when Elle was with her grandmother). She danced in front of my phone and claimed it was for TikTok or took pictures “for the ‘gram,” she said. She doesn’t have her own phone, or accounts on any of those social media sites. She’s only 6! I think she’s been seeing things online or something and getting ideas.
Anyways, I blew up at her, telling her she was too young for that. I shouldn't have lost my temper. But seeing her there, trying to look like she's in her twenties, just shook me to my core. She'd get to that age soon enough. I should have let her do whatever she wanted. Maybe then I'd still have her. I admit, things went back and forth, got out of hand. I yelled at her to "wipe that crap off your face."
I can't believe that might be the last thing I ever said to my daughter.
She got mad, and ran out of the house, screaming, “I hate you! I’m never coming back!” The door slammed behind her.
The thing is, we live in a pretty quiet neighborhood. She's run off mad before, but she's always come back after half an hour or so. Or she gets distracted and goes to some of her friends' houses in the neighborhood.
I believed she would come back. I truly did. So I didn't go after her.
I can't forgive myself for that.
She was missing for three days. After a few hours, Anna got nervous, and started calling Elle’s friends from school. No one had seen her. Another few hours passed, and I called the cops with a description of her and what she was wearing. They said they’d keep an eye out.
Between the two of us, Anna and I must have called every parent at the school and from church over the next three days. We called everyone we could think of. We printed off her picture and put it on Missing posters around the neighborhood. We even had the local news run her picture and ask if anyone has seen her.
After the first day, the police, our neighbors, some of Elle's teachers, and members of our church got together and searched the entire surrounding area. We live in a suburb, but buses don't run out here. She couldn't get too far on her own.
We came up empty handed.
The second day, we searched again, widened our search area, and asked at every house if they had seen her. No one seemed to remember a young girl with brunette curls coming by.
Anna was inconsolable, telling me that I should have supported Elle in her passions, even if they were, well, too mature for her age. And, I’ll admit, three days gave me a lot of time to regret everything I had ever said to her. I should have apologized. I should have been calmer. I should have yelled after her that I love her. The last thing I said to her before she went missing played in my head again and again.
On the morning of the fourth day, Elle appeared at the breakfast table like nothing had happened. She was still in the too-low cut dress of her mother’s that she had run off in, with makeup on her face. Her dark hair was still curled and streaked through with glitter. In fact, she looked exactly how she had looked dancing in front of my phone just a few days earlier.
Anna screamed with delight when Elle sat down. She threw her arms around her and kissed all over her face. “My baby’s back!” She cried and held Elle tightly. I, too, went over to embrace her, but I stopped before I got all the way there.
The thing is, Elle didn’t react to Anna at all. She didn’t hug her mom back at all, but she also didn’t squirm and try to push her away. She just sat there. Anna didn’t stop the barrage of affection, but I held back. Something didn’t feel right.
And then I noticed it. Elle...wasn’t blinking. She was staring straight at me while her mother hugged her and kissed her. She didn’t blink at all. I felt like I was staring at a very life-like doll of my daughter, a recreation of my daughter in physical likeness only.
Slowly...very, very slowly, a dark grin crept onto her face. She stared at me with unblinking eyes, and I saw the sharpened points of every tooth in her mouth. She opened her mouth wider and wider, until her jaw unhinged. Her wide, unblinking eyes still remained fixed on me in a never-ending stare as her mouth opened wide enough to fit a fist, a bowl, and then a full plate of food.
I stumbled backward and hit the counter, knocking a coffee cup onto the floor. It shattered, and I looked at it for a second. Anna stopped holding onto Elle’s neck and snapped her gaze towards me. “What is wrong with you, Chris?”
When I looked back, Elle was holding onto Anna, her dark eyes wide and scared. “Mom? Why...why is dad looking at me like that?” Her teeth seemed normal, her jaw fine. I had imagined it. But then, the blackness of her pupils expanded and filled every part of her eyes for just a second. I tried to speak, but couldn't make a sound.
Anna glared at me. “Chris!” I blinked and shook myself, looking at Anna. “Can’t you at least pretend to be happy that your daughter’s back?”
I tried to nod and smile, to convince myself it was the lack of sleep, the stress, the too-late nights filled with phone calls and coffee. The creature in my wife's arms still grinned, each pointed tooth glinting in the morning light. I blinked hard and rubbed my eyes, looking at them both.
"Chris!" Anna snapped. The woman I loved held onto this...this puppet, this possessed thing, this demon. This...whatever this was. This not-daughter.
“That’s...that’s not my daughter,” I managed to say. My voice was weak, hoarse, and breaking.
“What?! How could you say that?!” Anna screeched at me while Elle clung to her, sobbing into her neck. Anna and I had rarely fought. We hardly ever argued. When we did, we didn't raise our voices often. But here she was, at the kitchen table, holding onto the not-daughter, screaming at me for not accepting the thing into my life.
I tried blinking hard again, rubbed my eyes, then looking at the two. Anna glared at me with enough anger to light me on fire where I stood. But Elle...Elle was making noises like she was sobbing, but she looked at me from Anna’s protective embrace. There were no tears. Her cheeks were dry, and her makeup hadn’t moved. Once again, she grinned at me, showing those strange, sharpened teeth.
“Anna,” I said, trying to keep my voice down. “Get away from it.”
“IT?! SHE’S OUR DAUGHTER, YOU ASSHOLE!” The whole time she screamed at me, her hand kept stroking Elle’s dark curls. No glitter fell out. The hair barely moved with each stroke.
“ANNA!” I snapped, for Elle’s mouth had opened wide enough to reveal a second and third set of teeth growing behind the first, poking through the roof of her mouth. She tilted her head to the side and slowly inched toward Anna's nek. “GET AWAY FROM HER!”
Anna held on tightly to Elle. She turned to look at our “daughter,” and Elle looked back up at her, perfectly innocent. She looked normal, like she always looked when she was scared and hurt and sad. The only thing missing was her tears.
“Chris,” Anna said, her jaw set. “Get out. Get out of this house. You made her run away, and now you won’t let her come back?! LEAVE!”
“Anna, I…”
“JUST LEAVE!”
No amount of arguing or pleading released Anna’s grip from the not-Elle in her arms. No begging stopped Anna from throwing me out. So, here I am, in my car, typing to you all. I don’t know what else to do. I know that...thing inside is not my daughter, but I don’t know what it wants. Elle has to be out there somewhere. If I can just find her, bring her home, I can convince my wife that thing she’s holding isn’t our daughter. I just don’t know where to even begin.
Please, if you see my daughter, help me out. I have to get my wife out of there, but I can't think of another way to convince her. I've never believed in monsters or supernatural beings before, but...that thing inside...it's not my daughter.
submitted by RowanB1917 to nosleep [link] [comments]


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submitted by Calm-Internal5807 to u/Calm-Internal5807 [link] [comments]


2020.08.26 21:43 queryboss A 6 year Success Story of myself (US 23F) and my husband (AUS 25M)

Tldr; After 5 years of dating, 4 years cross continental and 1 year (in the middle) studying at the same university, we got married. We have our 1st anniversary in 2 weeks. Should be approved for our greencard in the next few months and he'll be moving in! That's 5 years of LDR with me visiting 3 times and him visiting 5 times plus studying at my university for a year. Covid prevented me from balancing the scales on visit numbers.
Just wanted to share my story. I wanted to use the success flair but after reading the sidebar, we're not technically at "Success!" yet though I consider it a success, because my husband is stuck overseas!
The Story
Back in the summer of 2014, I was 17 and had a best friend who introduced me to an online forum for role playing. She was really involved in it and really wanted me to join her so she connected me to the site's manager and had him message me on Skype. I then proceeded to be extremely slow and clearly uninterested in the game as he helped me set up a character, with him eventually scolding me for wasting his time. I apologized and said I really wasn't that interested but was doing it for said friend. We then commiserated over how said friend could be very pushy and shared some laughs. Then I politely told him and her that I would no longer be playing the game, and I thought that was that.
He messaged me on Facebook a week later to ask if I'd heard from my friend because she hadn't been active on the game site in the past week and it was holding things up. We ended up talking and soon I found myself messaging him late into the evening most nights, and our conversations were rarely about my friend or the game site anymore. In October of 2014 we would officially become boyfriend/girlfriend. It's important to note that he is Australian, and resides in Sydney, Australia. He was also 19 and in college, which when you're 17 is very scandalous and exciting, though now that we're both in our 20s the age difference is imperceptible. We'd never dated anyone before each other. And in my foolish 17yo ways, I figured that keeping it a secret from my parents was of the utmost importance.
Our patience was thin, he scheduled his first visit for February of 2015. I didn't tell my parents until the week before, and then only because they caught me messaging him at 2am. It ended up going very well, my parents loved him once they met him and he and I got along smashingly. Dating someone you've never met in person is a bit terrifying - it's very gratifying to see them in person and know you're still attracted to them, and that they haven't been spinning a tale.
We continued to date, messaged each other frequently. We had lots of "traditions" and ritual like behavior that helped us stay in touch. Due to the time zones he couldn't say good morning to me in real time, so he began emailing me a good morning email every day, including 3 pictures of cute puppies. I would reply everyday with a song that made me think of him. He still emails me a good morning message like clockwork, every single day, to this day. I, am no saint, and stopped sending him songs a long time ago. I used to send him a "video diary" once a week, something I recorded of me chatting about various things for say 30-40 minutes. Facetime and Skype were a little stilted for us so using a one way video worked really well for us. He'd usually send me a video diary in response.
He would visit me again a year later. I'm in college at this point. We spent half the time at my parents house and the other half in my college dorm. Cue first time sex and also true privacy together, which we weren't afforded on our first meeting. He decides if we want to continue seriously pursuing this, we'd have to spend real time together. So he finds a study abroad program from his university that partners with my university. He also asks that I visit him before he commits to spending a year in the US with me. So we part ways and I buy tickets to visit him for Christmas.
I meet his family, we explore Sydney together, and then he flies out to spend a year studying here in the US. It's our first time spending more than 2 weeks together. It's blissful at times, other times we fight about things I'd never even considered before (we're horrible in the kitchen together). But we work through obstacles and come out of that year knowing we still love each other, and that we want to make this work. I believe it's the end of 2017 at that point.
The next year was hard, going back to long distance is infinitely harder than already being long distance. Neither of us has the money to visit so it will be a full calendar year before I'm able to visit him. The loneliness is awful. We're into the challenging parts of our engineering degrees, so we're both pretty busy. Visiting him for Christmas at the end of that year was wonderful, and reaffirmed our desire to be together. We both had a year left of school. We figure that once the year is out, one of us will move in with the other, and the long wait will be over. I graduate and get a job in April.
Cue us discovering the labyrinth that is immigration. Finding out that the fiancé visa is garbage (he wasn't willing to spend over a year not working just sitting around), and that I can't emigrate to Australia unless I have 2 years of working experience in my degree field. That the only option before us is to get married ASAP. We discover this in the beginning of 2019. I'm ready to get married. He's not quite there, wanted to spend some time together engaged… He visits me in May, but we don't pull the trigger on anything. He goes home, and we spend months trying to figure out what to do, calling lawyers, arguing, struggling, cursing immigration. Finally we get a good lawyer and decide to go the Consular Processing route (form I-130) - getting married and getting a greencard. He visits again in September, we get married with our best friends that we met in college presiding and my parents watching. We had a Costco sheet cake for our wedding cake. It was simply wonderful.
I visit him for Christmas again (yeah I just kinda love Christmas, I also conveniently get a week off of work around that time). We make plans for him to visit in June. We assume that he'll probably get his greencard in November. The immigration process is slow and unwieldy but at least we both have engineering jobs now and can afford to visit each other often, no big deal. We've done 5 years long distance what's another 1?
Cue Covid-19. Australia closed its borders in April. The administration says they aren't opening their borders until there's a vaccine. As of right now they're still closed, my husband can't even go see his mother because she lives in a different state than him and Australian state borders are closed. It sucks! But thank goodness we're already married, we're most of the way through the greencard process so we're waiting on the consulate at this point. We're both working from home and we are saving like mad for a down payment once he finally gets here. I'm fostering dogs to keep me company, he's still running role playing games (though not in the website anymore). The hardest part is that with both of us working and with him in a different timezone, he starts work an hour before I get off work, and he gets off work at my midnight - I go to bed at 11. So we only get to call each other once a week, on my Saturday his Sunday, and occasionally on his lunch break if he's not swamped.
What have I learned through this?
Communication is everything. When we fight (which happens, and is part of a healthy relationship) 99% of the time is a misunderstanding, poor assumptions, or something the other person didn't bring up. For example, when he came to study here for a year he assumed we'd get an apartment together. I told him when I met him that I didn't believe in co-habitation before marriage. But he said he assumed that since we'd known each other for several years at that point that I'd change my mind. That was an unpleasant disagreement that stemmed from a lack of understanding. It worked out fine - I worked in the dorms and couldn't have let him live with me even if I wanted to - but it felt like an insurmountable difference at the time.
Don't let other people's opinions sway yours.
So many people told me "LDRs never work out," "He's probably banging other chicks behind your back," "How do you even know each other if you've only spent a few weeks together in person?" I'm a stubborn individual, so this stuff mostly rolled off my back. It probably hurt the most when my mother made a comment to the effect of "you'll understand when you're in a relationship" and I shot back "but I am in a relationship?" and she said "no I mean a real relationship." That was early on, so it's understandable that someone might treat a 17yo like that but it still hurt. If it's right for you right now, roll with it, and if in the future it changes, that's okay, because not all relationships are meant to last.
Would I do it again?
If you're asking if I'd do it all over again for my husband, yes, of course, he's fantastic and I have no regrets. If you're asking if I'd voluntarily get into a new LDR if my husband mysteriously disappeared one day. No, I would never subject myself to it again. It would be a hard limit, that any future prospects be local. Long distance is really hard, not usually fun, very lonely, and requires a huge emotional investment. My husband and I have already agreed to never accept a job with extended travel. We've already spent as much time apart as we can handle. That stage of our life is over (or will be soon).
Are there benefits to LDR?
Absolutely! The emotional intelligence that we had to develop in order to resolve disagreements remotely, as well as read each others moods and needs, is well beyond what most couples have at this stage. That said we severely lack in other areas (re: the kitchen) so we also have quite a bit of catch-up to do. We've also discussed every dang thing one possibly might need to (kids, money, life, death) into excruciating detail because at some point you run out of things to talk about! Also the highs in a LDR are so very high, seeing my husband after a year apart is so good, it's like falling in love all over again. But you have to watch out for the lows, because separating for another year is like having your soul torn apart and it can take months to fully recover. The recovery is often rarely in sync (like his response may be to completely lose his libido, while mine might be through the roof because I miss him) and that makes it even harder. I've never broken up with someone, but frankly I think it feels like being broken up with except you still have each other to vent to.
Do you have questions about cross continental relationships? Or about immigration into the US based on relationship? I have a lot of tips,tricks, and experience through blood, sweat, and tears so feel free to comment or reach out if you have questions. But mostly I wanted to say that if you work at it, and find a partner who is willing to work as hard as you, LDRs are a fully viable way to find your life partner! And not just something the kids are dabbling in.
submitted by queryboss to LongDistance [link] [comments]


2020.08.25 13:35 travel_ali My guide to cheap (or at least more affordable) travel in Switzerland (V2).

I posted a previous version of this a while back, but as I have expanded it quite a bit here is a new post.
More Swiss resources.
---General Points---
Switzerland is expensive to visit
Switzerland is well known for being expensive in comparison with surrounding countries (and most other countries in the world). Even a basic McDonalds meal will be painfully expensive to most visitors. If you are careful then a fun (if basic) trip can be had for less than 70CHF a day, or with eating out and spending on activities for more like 150CHf per day. If you are really hardcore and wild camp and eat what is basic enough to stay alive then 10CHF might be possible.
Living and working here you do at least have much higher pay than elsewhere and so very strong buying power. As someone living and working in Switzerland I mostly do daytrips or just for 1-2 nights at weekends, and so am lucky as most of the concerns of costs are covered by the salary and not being far from home. I do try and keep costs down so I have learnt quite a bit myself in how to avoid painful prices.
Ultimately if you really are on a tight budget and want to see the Alps then France, Austria, Germany, and Slovenia are all cheaper and offer much of the same.
As with Swiss watches the appeal is partly in the historical branding and the popular mindset, rather than Switzerland being the be-all-and-end-all of the topic.
Not everything is that expensive
The basics for travel are expensive (food/accommodation/transport) but many activities are actually cheaper than elsewhere. Compared to say London where many attractions are £20+ ($26 USD) or even the insane 200 KN ($31 USD) to walk the walls in Dubrovnik many Swiss attractions are quite reasonable.
  • Entry to the Château de Chillon is 13.5 CHF ($15 USD); less than half the price of the Tower of London and cheaper than most other castles in the UK.
  • A return ticket on my local cable car to a high ridge with panoramic views of the Alps and into French and Germany costs less than the half hour spin on the London Eye.
If you google around there are plenty of sites and blogs with suggestions in general, or for specific places
Be sure to double check the official details of anything I list on here
Things change with time and due to the size and scope of this post I am not going in depth with all the details – be sure to read up on the terms and conditions of any pass or other offers rather than just what is on here.
Be wary of advice from randoms online.
I have seen people complain about absurd prices (that a small lunch cost them 45CHF, or a simple takeaway sandwich cost them 20CHF) that simply are insane and exceptions rather than the rule (if they were even real to start with).
Likewise context is important: I have seen visitors from various parts of the USA claim Swiss food prices in the shops are cheaper, comparable, and far more expensive than back home (which may well all have been true).
----Accommodation-----
In general:
  • Official accommodation (which should include Airbnb) will give you a guest card in many cities and tourist focused areas. The exact benefits vary but normally include free local transport and free/discounted activities. Sometimes cable car rides will be included for free too. Usually you can look up what is included online beforehand (eg: for the Jungfrau region). You get the guest card at check in and it is valid until the end of the day that you check out on, sometimes you can print your accommodation reservation and use that to travel for free on the day of arrival before you check in too (again check the local website to see if that is valid). Mostly you only get the benefits in the town/village and places 10-20 minutes away, but in the beautiful and underrated canton of Ticino it covers the entire canton which is an incredible deal (if you are day tripping out of a main base then you can easily save more on transport than you spend on accommodation, especially as campsites are valid accommodation).
  • The most important factor here is season; January/February will be high season for skiing in the mountains (with DecembeMarch as the shoulder season), July/August will be high season for summer everywhere (with June/September as the shoulder season), and in most areas April/May and OctobeNovember are off season. So if you go to the Alps in May or October it will be much easier to find cheap accommodation than in August or February. The flip side is that not everything will be open or doable in the shoulder or off seasons (but it can still be worth visiting if you just want to enjoy the landscape but don’t have a certain hike or peak you are dead set on doing). For cities like Lugano that are more focused on summer tourism and don’t have a local ski resort then it will be much cheaper in the winter months like February than during the summer.
  • It might help to look to lesser known areas. You might be able reduce accommodation costs by staying somewhere nice but unknown. The difference probably won’t be significant, but if for example you stay in Täsch rather than the more famous and popular neighbouring Zermatt you will likely find more budget options.
  • Sticking to one area for longer will help cut transport costs down. Jumping several hours by train everyday will get expensive fast without a general pass.
  • If breakfast isn’t included and is more than 10CHF, then unless you are a heavy morning eater you might better off popping to a café or bakery for a coffee and bite to eat instead.
  • Tourist tax might not be included in the listed price (typically 2-3CHF per person per night). Likewise check for a non-listed cleaning fee if it is an apartment or Airbnb, this might not be too bad if it is after a week but could be a very nasty add-on for just a night or two.
Where to look:
Hostels:
  • Hostels can be had for as low as 20CHF for a bunk in a shared room if you are going to a popular tourist-heavy location like Interlaken or Luzern. But they are not always that cheap (especially in a ski resort in winter when a dorm bed can set you back 50CHF or more). Or even the cheapest option: a private room for 2 people in a budget hotel can be cheaper than 2 beds in a dorm. Check https://www.hostelz.com/ in addition to Hostelworld.
  • YHA hostels whilst not the cheapest are a good budget option that can be found all over the country, they tend to be family/relaxed places rather than party hostels. They are always clean, come with a good breakfast and some like Grindelwald have unbeatable views. The buildings tend to be very nice (in some cases like Burgdorf they are renovated castles). Sadly most don’t have a guest kitchen or fridge (check the info page for each location), but do offer cheap startemain/dessert dinners for 18CHF. If you are looking at the YHAs then book on their website rather than Hostelworld etc to avoid paying the extra for not being a member (membership pays for itself after only a few nights so it is worth signing up).
Camping:
----Transport-----
This is always a hard question to answer. The best solution will change depending on time-frame, number of people, how much you want to see/do across the country, and how much you want to keep your options open. Ultimately you will have to make a rough plan and calculate which option provides the best value.
Public transport will get you just about anywhere you need to go and many train lines have views you won't get from the roads. For public transport there are number of train passes to cover full or partial cost, the whole country or just an area, that can be bought anytime at a set price or are limited and vary in price. It can be somewhat overwhelming. I have written quite extensively about this, especially public transport, in a previous post and there are various other guides online to help there (for example this).
A few important examples:
  • Booking individual tickets in advance in itself does not make any difference to the price (unlike various other places in Europe like the UK and Germany). However from 60 days before the day of travel you can buy “Supersaver“ tickets which reduce the cost by up to 70%, but are only available at off-peak times and lock you to a certain train. This can be combined with the half-fare card for further discounts. A set number of supersaver tickets are available, so depending on how in demand a certain train is they might be sold out weeks in advance or be available still just before departure.
  • The Swiss Travel Pass might seem horrifically expensive at first glance, but if you are wanting to travel far and wide from a single base it will very quickly pay for itself. In addition to standard transport it also covers most ships, a number of cable cars (even going up to Rigi Kulm and Schilthorn for no extra cost), discounts on most of the rest of the mountain transport, and free entry to most museums.
  • Children get free or discounted travel. Below the age of 6 children can travel free of charge if they are accompanied by somebody 12 over older who has a ticket. The Junior Swiss Travel card costs 30CHF for a year and lets a child aged 6-16 travel for free so long as they travel with a parent. The pass is even free from the 3rd child.
  • If you want to be very flexible then Fairtiq might be worth checking out so you can hop on and off, or change direction without worrying about buying a ticket at the start.
Driving might be cheaper, especially with a group of people. However keep in mind:
  • If you are renting then it might be cheaper to rent just across the border in a neighbouring country and drive in.
  • If you are driving in from another country you will need to buy a 40CHF annual vignette to use the motorways (but not the smaller streets). This is actually really good value if you live here, less so if you want to just drive for a few hours to cut across the country.
  • Parking can be very expensive.
  • Some popular tourist spots like Zermatt/Wengen/Mürren are car-free so you have to pay for parking and then the transport to get you the last 10 minutes to the place.
  • Traffic offenses (speeding, not having your headlights on at all times) will result in VERY large fines.
Also:
  • If you are flying into Geneva and going to the city then you can get a ticket for free transport into the city from the luggage retrieval area.
  • You might also look into ride sharing like BlaClaCar. I have not used this, but from what I have read you should be prepared for cancelations and to be flexible.
  • Hitchhiking is possible and probably as safe as it is going to get, but I have no experience there.
----Food----
Do it yourself:
  • You almost never need to buy water. Tap water is fine, and just about every fountain has drinkable water (unless there is a sign on it stating otherwise). When in the mountains you can fill up from streams assuming there isn’t a farm or animals grazing above you.
  • Supermarket food is the obvious go to. But compared to the neighbouring countries you are still paying 50% or more for food items. Migros is the cheaper Swiss supermarket that you will find everywhere and is good quality. Denner is the slightly cheaper sister of Migros which isn’t always as easy to find. Lidl and Aldi are cheaper still, however they tend not to be in central areas or smaller towns or villages. Most supermarkets will have a small reduced section for goods near the sell by date. Be aware that supermarkets close early (typically 7pm or earlier), and outside of tourist resorts will be closed on a Sunday. There will be a shop (or a whole shopping complex) open everyday until 10pm at train or petrol stations though – but these are often more expensive.
  • If you REALLY love bread/cheese/pasta you can feed yourself for 10CHF for the whole day (maybe get an apple too to keep the scurvy at bay).
  • Markets on Wednesday/Saturday mornings are typically much more expensive than supermarkets. A few stands might offer free samples, but no market is big enough that you are going to fill up on them.
  • Places showing off a certain product (dairy, chocolate factory, etc) might give away a few free samples or include them in the tour price. The Kambly Erlebnis where you can eat as much as you want of their entire range without any need to buy anything is probably the best example of this, but it is rather out of the way for most trips. Whether you will save anything by going to such places compared to supermarket prices or are still able to buy cheap bags of rejects seems to be questionable.
  • A restaurant Fondue will set you back 25CHF per person or more. But a much cheaper and equally Swiss option is to buy some Cervelat sausages from any supermarket and go roast them over a fire somewhere in the countryside.
  • The cheapest beer is the supermarket own brands like the COOP “Prix Garantie Lager” which cost 0.5CHF per 0.5L can. Apparently these are mostly very acceptable for the price.
  • Meat is really expensive. Avoiding it will help cut costs.
  • You can bring food in with you, or if you have time then leave the country to go shopping (it is what the Swiss who live near the borders do). However Switzerland is not in the EU custom zone and there are limits on how much you can bring in per person without paying customs tax. It is not certain you will be checked at the border, but it isn’t impossible (especially on a Saturday afternoon when many Swiss shoppers will be coming back over the border).
Eating out:
  • There are plenty of takeaway options at stations and in larger towns. Figure 4-8CHF for a Sandwich/baguette or 8-10CHF for a kebab. Many cheap food stands might close by 7pm, or earlier if they are just aimed to commuters/shoppers, but there should always be something open to 10pm in any decent sized town.
  • There are a chain of cafes/outlets that sell day-old bread and baked goods sourced from local bakeries at a reduced price – ÄSS-BAR (meaning edible). These are only in the bigger cities at the moment, but have central locations.
  • Apps like “Too good to go” or “Homemade” are an option for finding cheap food (though outside of the bigger cities you might have very limited or no options).
  • Some areas have special deal packages you can buy, like “Zwei Für Eins” (two for one). However that is better suited to residents rather than short term visitors.
  • Migros restaurants are a budget friendly favourite. You can easily get a good meal for 15CHF (typically lunch as they are closed later in the evenings and all day on Sundays). The restaurants in the Manor department stores are also well regarded, some have quite nice views too.
  • Restaurants do not have to be as expensive as some people make out. You can easily find a Rösti or pizza for about 15CHF. A good dinner with drinks for 2 people for less than 50CHF should be easy to come across. Another option is to look for fixed menus at lunch time which will offer a good meal for 15-20CHF (especially at Italian or Asian places).
  • Finding coffee for less then 5CHF (and not a big one at that) will be very hard. My record is 3.5 CHF in Vallorbe.
  • You don’t want to know what a cocktail at a fancy club is going to cost you.
----Activities----
Obviously do something weather suitable. Money for a cable car ride is better spent on a sunny day than a wet and foggy one.
  • Take advantage of the free information. The quality of information you get through the Swiss topographic maps (see the Swisstopo phone app for one the go) is very useful for planning trips. It is very detailed, quick to load and allow all kinds of layers like hiking routes to be added is incredible and way beyond anything I have seen elsewhere – and all for free. Likewise the MeteoSwiss website (and app) offer lots of information and various maps to help plan your days. Being a popular destination for 200+ years means that there are endless sources for reading up on ideas.
  • Just walking around and taking things in is an obvious choice: most sights in towns like the churches, walls, and old towns are free to explore. All the main sights in Luzern (Lucerne) are free and easy to see by foot (see the tour suggestion in this post).
  • Free walking tours exist in most cities. In Bern you can even book a free tour around the Parliament building.
  • You can use the list at the bottom of this article to see free museums (click to arrange by Eintritt), others are free on certain days like a certain Sunday of month, otherwise 10-12CHF is a fairly standard price. If you plan to visit lots of museums then the Museum Pass might be worth a look – the Museum Pass is included in the Swiss Travel Pass.
  • If you travel by public transport you can get special Leisure deals with SBB that reduce the cost of some activities. For example in summer 2020 there is an offer for the FIFA World Football Museum that gives you 20% reduction on the journey to the location and back, and 20% reduction on admission to the Museum.
  • Larger and/or more popular places will have more extensive listings for free and budget events. For example Zürich on a Budget and Zürich unbezahlbar for Zürich.
  • In Bern you can see the bears for free and various other places have free wildlife parks (typically the free or cheaper ones will focus on local animals such as Wildnispark Zürich Langenberg or Biel Tierpark).
  • Festivals like Swiss National Day (August 1st) and Fasnacht (February time) provide free entertainment through fireworks, parades, and various other kinds of craziness. These range from Christmas markets to the burning of explosive wooden effigies (I have a list of more unique Swiss events here).
Shopping:
  • Mano COOP often sell the standard souvenirs and chocolates that you find in tourist shops but might well be cheaper.
Hiking, cable cars, and enjoying the views in general:
  • The views are free. But getting to them can be expensive, or otherwise require quite a bit of effort. The fitter you are the more you can do without having to take a cable car.
  • Resorts give you information about what is open/closed, what there is to do, and usually have multiple webcams showing the conditions at various locations. There is no excuse for paying a wodge of cash to find that all you can do is walk around a small viewing platform and see the same rain that you were already in below.
  • If you have the Swiss Travel Pass you get a free ride on most boats, or up a number of cable cars and some mountain trains. Typically to those where there is a village, but it even goes to Schilthorn and the top of Rigi. If you don’t get a free ride then you should get a 50% discount off the ticket.
  • Check ahead on the website for a cable car if you are hoping to get a discount with your Swiss Pass or half fare card. It works almost everywhere, but some resort areas (eg Davos) only give a discount if you are staying there and have a guest card.
  • Sometimes you will get an early bird / good morning ticket discount on cable cars or other mountain transport. Jungfraujoch for example has discounted Good Morning and Good Afternoon tickets if you are only up early or late, and Niederhorn gives you a free return if you go up before 9am.
  • The unsung Postbus is very cheap for what they offer. They will not get you to mountain peaks, but you can get higher up valleys or passes, which make good view points or starts for hikes. In Solothurn for example taking the Postbus to Balmberg costs 6.40CHF whereas taking the train to Oberdorf and the cable car to Weissenstein would cost twice as much.
Swimming:
  • Swimming is very popular in summer anywhere from urban rivers to mountain lakes. Almost everywhere has a swimming pool or Lido where you can change and have an area with various activities or leisure features for a price. But mostly you can very easily find somewhere to jump in for free. Just be careful in rivers – see what the locals do in places like Bern where it can be fast and dangerous.
Cycling:
  • A number of places (Zurich, Geneva, La Chaux-de-Fonds, Le Locle, Neuchâtel and the Canton of Valais) offer free/cheap bike rental during the summer - http://www.schweizrollt.ch/ . Bring 20CHF for deposit and ID has to be shown.
Winter sports:
  • Following the winter prepared paths is free, and renting a sled for a day is fairly cheap (about 15CHF).
  • Many resorts have special discount days or offers.
  • This - https://www.snow4free.ch/de/
----Misc----
  • If you have student ID then give it a shot.
  • There is free Wifi at bigger train stations (accessed via a code sent to you by SMS). Likewise the yellow Post Buses have free Wifi which you can use during the ride or just hanging out by them at a station.
  • In touristy and border areas you can often pay with euros but it is generally best not to unless you really don’t want to get some CHF. Typically they take euros at a 1:1 price to the CHF, but the euro is worth more than the CHF so you are making a loss. You might also not get change back if you pay in Euros.
  • Depending on what you want to see you could even stay over the border and drive in each day, but that would be too much effort to be worth the saving for visiting most of the country (especially most of the popular tourist areas are not in the border regions).
  • If you live in Switzerland then consider REKA which is a supplemented service aimed at family holidays in Switzerland. You can also buy Reka-checks which is essentially pretend money that costs less than the face value and can be used at a number of hotels/restaurants/cable cars/trains all over Switzerland.
  • The Rega is the mountain rescue service (phone: 1414). You can also download the Rega app to your phone which you can allow to use your location should you need to call for help from an unknown spot. For 30CHF per person a year you can become a Rega patron, this supports the mountain rescue service and means that (funds allowing) they will reduce/waive the rescue fees if you need help. That 30CHF could save you a hell of a lot a money.
submitted by travel_ali to Shoestring [link] [comments]


2020.08.20 18:37 HaulA20Augl Lo-nely Mo-m and Po-rn

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submitted by HaulA20Augl to u/HaulA20Augl [link] [comments]


2020.08.20 09:28 elvis_verocells11 You think you’re slick

Your timing is awful. How are you always so specific about what I’ve just done and know what I’m doing when I’m doing it? And when I confront you about it I’m “crazy.” I’m not retarded. And I’m definitely not the type of girl who will see something and let it slide if there are obvious similarities. Like for instance the other day when I brought up a date and you were organizing, the girl who I’ve been suspect of you cheating on me with for a hot minute now asks me to come watch her move furniture and organize after I also text her the date out of the blue and she doesn’t even question it.... she doesn’t say “huh” or “what does that mean?” She “quit drugs” because of her depression medication and now all of the sudden you’re bringing up quitting drugs too? Hmm... okay. But when I ask you to quit so that we can stop fighting and just be a normal couple you’re like “I’m not stopping because I don’t have a problem.” Another thing I noticed is that you have the same kind of tape I’ve seen in the girl’s pictures recently as well as the clamps that you’ve had for a long time to supplement for the spaces the magnets don’t cover on the bug curtain. On a man’s nipple. Who commented on that girl’s picture. And the day after I saw the picture there is a broken clamp on the table in the entrance of your garage. And if I bring it up you would definitely flash out and tell me to leave. That you’re tired of being accused of cheating. Why wouldn’t I bring that shit up when it’s constantly in my face all the time? But wait! There’s more! The green felt you have a huge piece of right by your desk folded up in a bag under some shoes in a basket that wasn’t there until like two days ago. I definitely thought you were in front of a green screen because your silhouette was not meshing right with the background. You are really taking this shit to the next level I swear. What’s up with you paying for a subscription to an app I literally have never seen you use? E V E R. Why are there two webcams on top of your computer monitor that I have also never seen you use? And why did you tell me that you couldn’t find a battery to fit the Kodak easyshare when there was one sitting in plain sight? And why did you tell me after that it wasn’t the battery that was the problem, it was finding a charger but then there was a charger with another battery for that camera right on the kitchen counter which is usually where you put your stuff after you came back from somewhere or you’re getting ready to go somewhere? And why does she have a million and one Kodak cameras at her house that she’s putting online to sell? And why are you all of the sudden setting up your garage to have a corner to start selling things again? I’m still crazy right? And why the day after you pull the wheelchair out of the corner there is a hammock on it and then the girl texts me about finding her giant hammock upstairs? And why did she text me after you called me the day that you ignored me for 8 hours and I texted her to see what she was doing for a little test right after you left my house? And why did you buy styluses before you told me to stay off of the website? Everyone who does graphic design or photo editing has a stylus. I have friends who are tattoo artists who say they could not draw on a tablet for shit if they didn’t have a stylus. And why does she have a picture of her dumb ass bird with your CAMO CARGO SHORTS in the background with the caption military macaw? And why is one of the phone numbers under one of your painfully obvious fake contact linked to an email that identifies her birthday and her bird? I looked it up on google and the bird specified is pretty much like the same exact bird that she has. And your birth year is the same numbers behind her new email she signed up for something with on the same site that you use but nobody my age even has a passing thought about that website anymore? And the same date that I brought up to the both of you? And why after you get your cup for Christmas does she tell me she dyed her hair that color? And why do all of the numbers in your phone under the fake contacts link to the same type of group on social media? I’ve also seen the word “inquisition” way too many times in the past week on different social media platforms. First time was on the page of the girl, the next time was on the page of a guy who will not stop messaging me on that website who is the boyfriend of the girl (who I think is using the photo editing website to change her appearance on said website) and then there is a group on a completely different social media with the word that shows up every time I search for those emails linked to the numbers in your phone. And it’s not because you put those emails in the contacts that I have found those email addresses. I searched the phone numbers and they showed up on the internet. Then I searched the emails on the social media website where the word shows up every time along with an assortment of different nail design groups and a group with the email address’s platform that nobody I know uses except for you and the girl. And you brought up when we first met that I liked to get my nails done and I still cared about myself last night. And lookey there, a notification just popped up on my phone screen with the numbers. Are you using the script app to send me notifications at oddly synchronized times? Because I have that app on my phone so I know that it’s possible to fake messages and every other notification known to mankind. Like it’s sick that you have people in on this with you too. A whole group of people who think that the jokes on me but I’m just sitting back like how far are you guys willing to go to make me think I’m “going crazy.” Funny that you use the term bipolar schizophrenic. I don’t hear voices. I see shit and I follow the signs and I call you out on it. Yeah maybe I went a little crazy while you kept me in frickin isolation for five months, I’ll admit it. But you know you were fueling the fire. You just never admitted to it. Like that part you always sing in that song “if she catch me cheating, I will never tell her sorry.” That’s gross. And doggish. And just wrong. You just use my resources and tell me what I want to hear to sell me a dream. Well guess what, DOO. I am not sold. I’m just here for the ride. If you choose to grow up one day, i would be more than happy to oblige but since I brought up that date all you talk about is how we’re not together anymore because you just can’t take the accusations anymore. Well what do you expect me to do after you leave me alone for my birthday last year while I’m having a miscarriage to go and take pictures of this girl in lingerie. And why do I keep getting notifications from a group about miscarriage when I just started bringing that situation up again? I know who your group is. And someone else just solidified that fact for themselves when they followed you on another social media where you only have 2 other followers and you follow me and one other person (after I deleted my old friends from who you’re following and who you brought up last night when old boy asked me if I had any friends. And when I asked you “what about the girl” you immediately said no? Probably because of that date I’ve been mentioning. And hopefully you didn’t choose that date because of my father passing on that day the month prior because that would be evil and I don’t want to believe you are capable of thinking that way. Who did you just say ridiculous to? Right after I typed that? Yeah. Your last name shows up before hearing aids when you press the sequence for the hearing connection on an iPhone. I’m really not as dumb as you think I am. I’m actually a genius in some aspects verified by my brother and you heard him on the phone. “She’s a lot smarter than you think she is.” I play dumb and I’ve done it my whole life because I’ve turned it into my defense mechanism for being bullied all the way from preschool up. Starting with being adopted and it hasn’t stopped yet. Damn rants.
submitted by elvis_verocells11 to u/elvis_verocells11 [link] [comments]


2020.08.16 22:47 Dismal_Apparition My mom has been missing for years.

I wrote a story awhile back called my mom has been missing for years. I think I might have found her.
It ended up gaining a lot of traction. However, that isn't the original way the story was written or intended. The original work was removed for being "non-horror".
I felt that the intro was too gripping to throw away, so I rewrote an entirely new story around that intro that fit the subs rules.
I wanted to share the original version with all of you today. If you've read the story that was approved and posted, you will notice similarities in the beginning.
Let me know how you think this version compares to the one that was posted!
Without further ado, I present to you:
I found my childhood bully on a dating app. I showed her what a nice guy I turned out to be.
“Eat it!” Charlotte pushed Marlena’s head closer to the fly-infested dog turd on the asphalt, “eat it and be grateful! My daddy saw your daddy at the soup kitchen, so you must be hungry!”
A cacophony of giggles erupted behind Charlotte. A gaggle of pig-tailed, pony-tailed, and bob-cutted brats from hell.
“You’re hurting me!” Marlena cried, “please just let me go!” Strands of her flowing brown hair were beginning to touch the droppings.
“Enough, Charlotte!” I shouted, “leave her alone or I’ll tell the teacher.”
Charlotte turned her head toward me in a slow, calculated manner.
“Oh look who it is, peepee boy Carlos!” She pointed, her gang bellowing out on cue, “did you run out of pants to pee in yet?”
“That was three years ago, we were in second grade!”
“You wanna know what my daddy said about your daddy?” She took a step toward me, blonde pigtails bouncing as she moved, “he said your daddy left your mommy because he didn’t want to raise such a fat, ugly son!”
“Stop it! You’re just a bully! Bullies never win!” I took a step backward.
“He said that you were already so fat when you were born that you almost tore your mommy in half. That’s why she’s in a wheel chair,” she took another step, forcing me back another as well, “that your daddy took one look at your ugly, saggy mouth and ran out of the hospital!”
Her next step sent me stumbling backward, tripping over Marlena and into the pile of dog crap.
The group roared with laughter, joined by a new voice: Marlena’s.
“Ew!” Charlotte giggled, “I knew you were full of piss, I guess you’re full of shit now too!
The crowd went wild.
---
My mom started homeschooling me the following year. Well, homeschooling is kind of a stretch. She mostly laid in bed with her oxygen mask on, watching The Price is Right.
I was forced to fend for myself. Microwaved pizza rolls, cheese flavored tortilla chips, and a certain neon-green soda were my main sources of nutrition.
I didn’t blame my mom for the way I looked. It wasn’t her fault that I had a thyroid condition, or that I had a stroke at birth which gave the left side of my face a permanent droop.
She blamed me for the loss of her legs though. She hated me for it. She reminded me of that every day.
Years passed and I reached my early twenties, still living in mom’s basement. I spent all my time writing, drawing, playing video games, watching romantic comedies where the nerdy guy gets the girl.
I’d never had any friends, besides the ones I had online. Online I could be anyone I wanted to be. Online I was Jeremy, the tall, handsome college basketball player whose season was cut short by a knee injury. I used pictures downloaded from a Russian male modeling site to portray him.
I started talking to beautiful girls on dating sites. Wooing them with thoughtful poetry. Listening to their problems. Drawing cute caricatures for them. They loved me. They told me how handsome, smart, and caring I was. They saw that I was a nice guy. They all wanted to meet me. Well, they wanted to meet Jeremy, anyway.
My dreams were filled with wonder. In my dreams I was Jeremy. I was six-foot-three, one-hundred-eighty pounds. My mom was walking again. We would dance together in the kitchen and laugh and sing and hug each other. She’d tell me what a wonderful son I was and how much she loved me. I’d introduce her to my beautiful fiancée who loved me too. We’d all cry tears of joy together.
Then I’d wake up.
---
A few days ago I began looking for a new girl to talk to online. The girls would always stop responding after awhile. They would give up after a few weeks of my excuses for not meeting in person.
Swipe left. Swipe left. Swipe left. Swipe left.
A familiar tone binged on my phone: someone sent me a message.
“Heya Jeremy. Super cute pics! I love the Office quote in your profile. Wanna chat?”
My heart fluttered for a moment before sinking deep into my stomach.
Her picture.
It was my childhood bully.
My hands started trembling as I pushed my chair backward, rising to my feet. My phone fell to the floor.
I looked down. Jeremy’s handsome face stared back at me for a few fleeting seconds before the auto-lock kicked in. In Jeremy’s place was a black mirror, the reflection of a monster. A fat, crying monster.
I wiped my orange-coated fingers against my jean shorts and took a few deep breaths.
No woman would ever love me. Not the girls from dating apps, not my childhood bully, not even my own mother. I had to show her who I really was. Who I really could be.
“Hey gorgeous,” I typed, “I’d prefer to chat in person. Seventh Street bar in twenty?”
*BING\*
“I’ll be there, hot stuff.”
*BING\*
“Hey, can you meet me in the alley? I have something I’d like to give you before we go inside.”
*BING\*
“Well, aren’t you Mister Romantic? I’ll be there.”
She was walking down the alley twenty minutes later, brown hair bouncing gracefully as ever.
I stood in the shadows between two dumpsters, hands presenting the gift in front of my chest.
“Hey Jeremy” she slowed as she walked toward me, “this is actually kind of— oh my god… Carlos? Is that you?” She froze when she saw my face.
“Hey gorgeous,” I half-smiled, “I think this was meant for you.”
I shoved the festering pile of shit into her face and pushed her against the wall.
“What the fuck!” She gagged, “get off me you psycho! What did I ever do to you? HELP! HELP!
“You laughed at me” I wrapped my hands around her neck.
“You kneeled behind me and made me fall.” I raised her off the ground.
“You’re just a bully, Marlena.” I squeezed.
“And bullies never win.”
submitted by Dismal_Apparition to DismalStories [link] [comments]


2020.08.14 16:38 500scnds [Table] Hey Reddit! I'm songwriter and producer Nicholas Furlong. Best known for writing and performing vocals on "The Nights" by Avicii. AMA!

Source
There was also a "guestbook" in the AMA.
Questions Answers
Just wondering (vis a vis "the nights"), did you father actually say any of that stuff to you? Also, love your stuff! Playing some of your other works to the family right now, thanks for reading! He did. There was a specific moment I will never forget when my dad and I were driving in his old beat up gear van and I was crying because I used to get made fun of A LOT for loving rap music as a white kid growing up, in a small hillbilly town. I was like 14 years old I think. He turned and said "Son... You can't listen to any of this. If you love what you're doing, do it unapologetically and if people make fun of you, fuck em." In the years approaching me moving to LA I also recall many convos of him saying that I'd only ever know how things would play it if I took the ride. He really gave me the courage to blindly throw myself out into the world and into the music industry with a head full of ideas and a heart full of enthusiasm.
the below is a reply to the above
I remember people making fun of you in middle school and high school (CVMS DHS) I’m glad to see that you followed your dream and found success! It’s been cool to hear The Nights and say, “I went to high school with that guy!” It’s also super cool to see someone brush off the haters and become a raging success. 👏 Skuzzard: I remember this too unfortunately. I also remember in high school that Nick was a super genuine person. He is clearly still very genuine to his passions and goals, which you may not be able to say the same about for most people from our “small hillbilly town”.
nickfurlong: For the record, I still love that small hillbilly town. It's what made me and keeps me grounded. That, and all the good life long friends I have from here!
How exactly are you compensated? Do publishing companies periodically mail you a check for your contributions? Is it done online? There are SO many ways to make money in the music business. None of them are easy unfortunately, and collecting can feel like walking backwards through a forest with your eyes closed. Here's the best way I can break it down for you:
In the United States there are three songwriting societies known as PROs (ASCAP, BMI, and CESAC). Step 1 is to register for one of these. Personally, I chose BMI. You will be given a member ID number for yourself as a songwriter (this is how they will pay you performance royalties). You will then create a publishing company with that same society, linked to your member ID, name it whatever you want to associate with you as the musician (think of it like your very own company name). Now, if you publish a song you and it starts generating money, then about 12 months after the song is released you will begin to see money being collected by the society you chose and paid to you in two ways, one as a songwriter to your songwriter account and one as a publisher to your publisher account. If you begin to create more songs that generate more income then I would advise looking into doing a publishing admin deal. This is where a third party company (ex: Kobalt Publishing) would ensure that the PROs are collecting ALL of the money your songs are earning. It's a HUGE industry with a lot of moving parts so it's easy to leave money on the table if you aren't careful. Another HUGE thing most people don't realize they can do is sign up for your SAG-AFTRA performing rights if you are an actual performer on a song. This + neighboring rights! Look into all of these.
Do you think for new artists/ bands that gaining exposure by constant gigging is a thing of the past? Not totally, but in some ways yes. I also think it HIGHLY depends on who you are as an artist. Do I think that somebody like Calvin Harris could tour less and continue to release music successfully? Yes. Do I think he would continue to be AS successful? Maybe, but touring definitely eliminates any extra doubt. Now an act like twentyonepilots. I don't see them NOT in an arena. I read an interview recently actually where Tyler Joseph had talked about the pressures to find a way to provide the same interactive experience in the age of COVID, and at the time they didn't really seem to know what to do. It will be very interesting to see how touring changes, if it all, in the future.
In the making of The Night, who did what? Lyrics? Song melody? Harmony? The song idea? Drop? :) I had originally written the verses down in my note pad and had a voice memo of the idea. I sent it to my producer friend Jordan who had been working with another friend he later introduced me to named Gabe. The three of us crafted a first draft of the song at Jordan's studio a couple of weeks later. Jordan and I then went to John Feldmann's studio to have the guitars done and I recorded my vocals with produceengineer Zakk Cervini. I sent that version to Ash blindly and he responded with some notes. We spent about another week going over notes he continued to send and making changes he asked for, and then sent them all of our files. Three months later I was sent a video of Tim playing The Nights live at a festival and I hadn't even heard the final cut yet!!! I was so nervous the song wouldn't come out or that it was all just smoke and mirrors but when I realized it was really happening, you bet your ass I buckled up hahaha.
Hi Nick. What was it like to perform at Tim's Tribute Concert this past December? How did you contain your emotions? It was difficult. I was a little choked up at certain moments and trying to contain myself emotionally. Pouring my heart out to a crowd of that size while our song was being played by all of those wonderful musicians in the house band made it all VERY real. I managed to make it until I got off the stage, and then I stood in the crowd with my fiance, a lot of my best friends, and all of the fans, and we just hugged, cried and watched the final moments together.
I'd love to hear about the logistics that went into the Avicii Tribute concert. The entire thing was a work of art, and I can't believe it was a one-off show, but had so many moving pieces! Can you tell us what the process was like preparing for the show? Was there an entire run-through or dress rehearsal type event beyond a soundcheck? And secondly... what was your favourite thing about Sweden in December? (in hindsight, thank goodness this concert happened pre-pandemic!) Honestly it was the most intense and fast paced thing I've ever been a part of. I flew to Stockholm four days before the show, had three rehearsals with the full band. One the day after I arrived at a rehearsal space, one the day before the show at the arena, and one final dress rehearsal before doors opened. Everyone that put that show on was the most professional at what they did, and we were all very aware backstage what we were doing this for so everyone down to the people securing the venue were bringing their A-game. I felt like a fighter about to go out to earn my world title leading up to my call time. I paced around the soccer team's locker room doing vocal warm ups while my manager, best friend Earl, and fiance watched in angst until the producers grabbed me and walked me to the stage. At that point I was literally walking on air and felt more adrenaline pumping through me than I'd ever experienced. I was being told to watch my steps because of electrical and pyro going off, and had to not only perform but stay mindful of those cues and crucial moments. For example, I told the show producer before I went out, "what if I ask the arena to raise their phones and sing the chant with me to close the song?" and she had the brilliant idea seconds before I propelled through the floor to turn my camera flash on and face it towards my thigh so that it wouldn't show through my pants, but I would effortlessly be able to take the phone out and create the moment. Also, right before I went out I had people running up and yelling things in my ear left and right, but I managed to step aside and pray to Tim, to personally thank him, and to say I would do my best to perform as if he were on that stage behind me... It was one of those nights you find yourself walking around the hotel room at 3 AM still trying to come down from the rush, but not wanting the moment to pass.
Fav thing about Sweden was the FOOD!!! I could eat meatballs with ligonberries the entire time I am there haha.
Do you ever feel like you don’t get enough credit for playing such an important role in the song? Sometimes, sure. But that's just the ego huffing and puffing. I don't mind that I'm not the center of attention in 99% of cases, because I really do enjoy the teamwork aspect of working on an album or a song and I truly understand and respect that it takes a village in most cases to have a success. If I'm demanding more credit for the writing side, I better be willing to give credit to the mixers, mastering engineer, radio promoter, etc...
what was Tim like as a friend and as a music producer? From everything I know, he was the kind of friend you want. We didn't get the chance to become very close, and I really wish we had more time once he slowed down. As a music producer he was dedicated to his craft, and at always getting better. He was fearless in pushing the envelope of his own music, and inspired by a world of taste and diversity. He also was SO prolific, and had a keen sense of identity in the way he wrote and produced a song. I found those to be some of the things that stood out the most to me.
Any plans on collaborating with Kygo? He's recently been collaborating with artists who've worked with Avicii (Zak Abel, Zac Brown, Joe Janiak, Sandro Cavazza etc). Would love to see you two make a song together. So funny you mention it haha. I actually wrote two songs on that album! I co-wrote and co-produced the Zac Brown song and co-wrote "Say You Will" with Petey and Patrick. I've also been working with Kygo's Palm Tree Crew since this year which has ultimately gotten me back into dance music a great deal.
What's your favorite song you worked on? This is such a tough question because the music I've made is like timestamps to my life. A way to recall time periods, good or bad, that lead me to a thought or a feeling that lead to a song. If I DID have to choose, I'd say most recently it's the song "Someday" I just did on Kygo's new album 'Golden Hour'
Hi! I’m an electronic music producer as well. What’s the best way to get exposure (besides spamming self-promo)? How can I get put on big playlists and get more people to see my music? That's really tough. It's such an overly saturated market these days and digital music and music distributors are now making it easier for anyone to release music. I would say just be as clever as possible in your creations and how you roll them out, build a loyal fan base that provides your project with a base level of support, and make you as an artist more interesting than everything within 100 miles of you. Knowing that people are probably not going to pay attention at first, accepting that, and choosing to work for the attention you want is what gets people to notice you IMO.
What do you feel when you reflect upon the lyrics in The Nights after Tim passed? Grateful. I am SO grateful for that experience and for the opportunity it gave me to really establish myself in the industry. I also will never forget sitting in my studio that April morning when I found out and I was just gutted. I couldn't walk past the plaque in our house without getting an ominous feeling for months. I just hated that I shared this HUGE thing with another person and he was torn out of the picture before I could really share how much that meant to me with him. Today though, I am nothing but grateful for that song and for the work he put in during his time here with us.
What’s the record you’re working on at home about? I started writing an album of songs that I am writing ironically as fun summer songs, but they're all sort of metaphors with deeper meaning highlighting the heat of living in America right now, so to speak. I'm producing it to be a lot more modern and in your face, with a lot of dark /industrial / grunge undertones. Excited to actually share some soon!
Do you ever have prolonged periods of writer's block? Do you ever get too critical of your work causing you to abandon a song/idea? Yes and yes. So normal. My longest I think was 7 months with just folders and folders of bad ideas haha. That sentence in and of itself tells you everything you need to know. Best way I've learned to deal with it is to pay attention to my life and make sure I'm not too stressed out in other aspects, or that I'm not working too much and not giving myself time off, etc.. Stay self-aware, and don't force creativity. It's like walking on a broken ankle.
What was it like working with Walk the Moon? Are they as positive and good of people as they come across in shows and on social media? Which songs did you work on? I have only ever worked with Nicholas, but he is definitely such an insanely talented, fun loving guy and a great energy to be around. I know all of those guys are super talented though and a good hang. I worked on Back 2 U with Steve Aoki and Boehm and we also wrote a song for Kygo and Zac Brown together as well.
hello first i want u to know that i really love “The Night”, i want to ask you how what its feel like that your vocal is uncredited in this song, so not many people can discover you. (for me example, i knew you after your tribute performance). is there another song with you as uncredited vocal?? Thanks for your question! I am credited on the song for vocals and songwriting, but what I think you want to know is if it bothers me that I'm not a featured artist vocally. It definitely doesn't. To me, "The Nights" was always much bigger than any one of us. It was a story that felt like all of us when we made it. I haven't done any other uncredited vocal work, but you can view most of my other work on my web-site. I've also begun to realize that there are a few people who would enjoy me putting out a project, so I've taken that to heart and started working on a musical piece of me to leave in the world.
How did you get involved with working with 311 on Voyager? Can you share what your experience was like during your time working with them? I've known Nick Hexum for the longest time so when they began working with John Feldmann, another long time friend and collaborator who brings me in to write a lot, he suggested it.
Edit: Forgot to answer second question... I LOVE working with those guys. Nothing but good energy. Writing with them was like going to hang with your boys for three hours and at the end you have a song to show for it.
Do you ever get writers block? If so, how do you get past it? DO I EVER!... In my experience with writer's block it's either because I'm working too much or I'm just not inspired musically. In most cases it lasts a few weeks because I've learned how to push through it, but in severe cases I'll stare at my Pro Tools for months and hate everything I start before I can even figure out what it is. The trick is, get up, walk away. Go do something else, and come back to it. If it still isn't clicking, move on and come back to it later. The only thing worse than not having an idea is forcing one IMO.
What are some useful tips that can be used to write a some good lyrics? Besides the obvious ones Think what you wanna say. Now try to say it in ways that nobody else has before that you know of. Challenge yourself to try and write the song almost as if you're solving a puzzle poetically.
Of people you worked with, who used too much chain compression in their bass? Definitely me hahahahaha.
If you could go back in time and give a younger version of yourself one piece of key advice, what would it be? Not to be so hard on myself. I'm starting to get to an age where I'm a lot more confident and comfortable in myself. The music industry can definitely instill a lot of insecurity in you as a young person, so it's so important to remember why you're doing it and not who you're doing it for.
Never heard the song.. Great, now I am getting all teary-eye'd. My pops passed away a few years ago, so this hit me a bit hard. How the hell am I going to get back to work now? (BTW, lovely song.) I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my mom a little over 8 years ago so I know the emotional bubble up all too well haha. Sending my love to you and your family and thank you for sharing!
Edit: Added some friendly encouragement... If you can, take the rest of the day off or just try to make a little time to go do something that makes you happy!
irst things first, your performance at the tribute concert was amazing! How was it like to work with Tim? How was he as a producer? How much time did it take to create the absolute banger that was The Nights? Any other collabs you did with him? Thank you so much! What an unforgettable experience for all of us. We never got to work one on one believe it or not. We did everything remote at that time as his itinerary was seemingly non-stop at that time. He was a magician though. When I listen back to the demo vs the actual recording you can very easily hear the magic in his contributions. That was the only one we ever did together.
I am a longtime 311 fan and saw your name credited on some of their songs on their last album. I see you have already answered how you got involved with them, but can you walk us through your specific contribution to a song or 2? Sure. The first song we wrote was "Dodging Raindrops" at John Feldmann's house. We sat around the kitchen table and drank coffees while John played guitar and we all took turns improvising lyric and melody ideas. Once we had a little working lyric and idea we threw it down in John's studio and Nick and Aaron started recording that day. It was very collaborative. Then for a totally different process on "Space and Time," Nick sent me the instrumental on e-mail and I recorded a little scratch demo of a song idea. He cherry picked some of the lyrical and melody parts he liked out of my ideas and then ran it. Such a fun and easy going process. No stress when I'm working with those dudes!
If you wrote it, performed vocals, and produced it, why is it not "The Nights" by Nicholas Furlong? Because I wrote it to pitch to other artists, since that's what I do as a writeproducer. My vocals were originally a demo reference, and when I sent to Avicii they just decided to keep me on. I even asked about possibly having someone else sing it with a noteworthy name and they declined. So I decided rather than "who the hell is this guy" being the focus, I'd just let the focus lie on Avicii putting out a new song, and not get all bent about not being a featured artist. Just wasn't as important to me to be the big cheese as to others I guess.
I’ve always wondered , do famous ppl use or have access to their social media? Like are they actually opening their social Apps and looking at comments , dm’s etc it is it more just a branding tool? Also, what’s something that “regular” people do around famous ppl that’s really cringy? What’s something they do that’s interpreted as chill? I never know how to act around famous ppl. Like - is the polite thing to just treat them as anybody else? People are more than their accomplishments and social status. Just remember that knowing OF somebody doesn't mean actually knowing them. The more blatantly obvious you make it, the more uncomfortable it will be for everyone.
What artists are some of your biggest musical inspirations? These vary from time to time but some of the staples that never change would be 2Pac, Kurt Cobain, Trent Reznor, Dr. Dre, Eminem, Mark Ronson, Quincy Jones, and Jose Gonzalez off the top of my head.
Hi Nick! I saw that you said that you collaborate a lot remotely, so have you felt an impact in regards to your songwriting/production process at all due to Covid while working on your new record? Or is it pretty much business as normal for you? Thanks! In some ways it's business as normal. I'm still very capable of getting the work done, but a LOT of the magic I love in making music is in the collaboration that takes place in the room. It just isn't the same on Zoom haha. I'm in talks now to possibly produce another Papa Roach album and we are talking about doing a test and then recording remote while quarantining to be able to achieve that "in the room" magic.
How are you faring after aviccis death? How are you honoring his memory? I am continuing to do exactly what we glorified in our song. To live my life to the absolute fullest and find ways to really love your purpose daily. Maybe you don't have a lot of money, or you live in an area where there isn't much going on... It never meant copy this guy's lifestyle or passion... It meant find your own, and then never stop tangling with that.
I just wanted to thank you for the song "The Nights", it has been my favorite song for a very long time. If you were to see Avicii once again, what would you ask/say to him? Thank you for changing my life forever.
How much of “The nights” did you create, what was Tim’s influence in this track? Did you send him a demo without a drop lead? Did he write any lyrics for it? Thanks so much for this! The song was pretty much done other than the drop when I sent it to Ash.
Do you accept lyrics and instrumental tracks instead of full demos from people online , since I can’t sing very well? I definitely listen to instrumental submissions but I don't really take lyric submissions. That's just something I prefer to keep sacred to my own story. Even if I'm co-writing, part of my identity is in the pot and that's what makes it feel a little more like a piece of me.
What inspires you when writing lyrics? Do you have a favorite song you've heard this year? A lot of my writing is really personal. I love visualizing my songs like a story being read aloud to a room of people. I can be very OCD when it comes to lyrics not making sense next to each other, ESPECIALLY a chorus. One of my favorite songs right now is "People" by the 1975.
[deleted] Figure out what YOU sound like and use that as the blueprint to shape who you are as an artist.
Whats your favourite part in the industry you work in? The stuff like this. All of the tough stuff is in the creating, and networking, and perseverance. The part where you get to just enjoy the creation with others, and then talk about why we love this wonderful thing called music together and bond over the songs that helped us through bad times or remind us of great times, THAT is my favorite part.
The Nights was so great, but I have not heard you on any other tracks! Is there any reason why? Also, have you ever considered writing for Hip Hop or R&B? I haven't done too many features, as I have always sort of enjoyed being a behind the scenes guy. I did a feature once with Steve Aoki and Rune RK called "Bring You To Life" that was released a few years ago. I'm definitely keen on doing more, and especially releasing my own project finally.
2 Questions: Did you have any fun experiences working for Aioki or Papa Roach, like hanging out with them or was it all just business? How do celebrities even contact you? Are they noticing you on the world stage and think ,,damn, I need that guy to help me,, or do you apply for their cooperation? AB, SO, LUTELY!!! I love those guys! Aoki and I performed at the Shrine Expo in 2013 and broke two Guinness World Records. We had some great talks in the interim of all the chaos. Also Papa Roach is like an extended family to me now. When you spend enough time with somebody doing something as personal as making music, you definitely start to feel like a family.
I don't think they seek me, and I don't seek them. Paths just cross as they do at times, and I follow my instincts if the passion is there.
this song speaks to me. Is it based on your real life? It is! So glad you were able to relate to it. Hope you enjoy your day!
How did you get your start? And what brought you to where you are now? I had the determination to be somebody that mattered in the world of music, and a lot of people telling me I couldn't was the driving force.
Do you ever just play music for fun without any other goals or without recording it? What style music do you like to play to yourself? All the time!!! I love doing this. It's such a healthy exercise to keep your creative juices going. I have hard drives of so many songs, some REALLY good, some God awful, that will probably only see the light of day amongst family, friends, and peers because they were just impulse ideas for fun. As for style, I am definitely a melting pot since I listen to pretty much every genre and find inspiration in different parts of each.
Are you currently working on any fun collaborations you can share? One of my favorite ones recently is a song I wrote with Nicholas Petricca of WALK THE MOON that Zac Brown sang vocals on for Kygo's new album. Talk about a room full of extraordinary talent haha. I felt pretty honored to be in that company. Another is a song I wrote and co-produced called "Supremacy" for a band named FEVER 333. I did that one with John Feldmann, Travis Barker, and with a little help from the punk rock queen Debbie Harry for letting us reimagine her song "Rapture"
What do you think about The Days and do you have any relation in the making of it? I personally preferred the Brandon Flowers version because I am a huge fan of The Killers. Unbias opinion though, it's a beautiful song! The first time I heard him playing the demo out in his live shows I just remember it putting me and one of my best friends who is an avid Avicii fans in the best mood.
Edit: for clarification, I had no involvement in the making of "The Days."
What DAW(s) do you find you and/or your collaborators working with most of the time? I use Pro Tools and have always been on that grind. The others I think I come across the most are Cubase and Ableton. If I had to make a switch I'd go to Cubase because I think it's just better for tracking live instruments and vocals. Ableton for programming is AWESOME, just not the best for editing IMO.
Would you collaborate with Kygo on any future projects? So funny I keep seeing this question. I actually worked on both "Someday" and "Say You Will" from his latest 'Golden Hour' album!
Would you be open to working with small time illustrators/graphic designers? Been a big fan of your work and would love a chance to reach out and collaborate! absolutely! [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) is where public submissions for music / art / general inquiries usually go.
Did you play The Nights for your dad? What was his reaction? I did. He was very aware of the entire process. When the record was certified Gold in the US by the RIAA I ordered him a plaque in his name to fulfill his lifelong dream of having a gold record.
musicians like you are earning money like a puzzle, a little bit here, a bit of publishing there, a little session fee there. how would you say your average salary is combined of? what are some ingredients that pay way more/less than one would expect? This is such a technical and GOOD question, so thank you. In my personal experience I would say that areas like mechanical royalties and neighboring rights are where a bulk of additional money is made. The biggest issue with publishing is that there are lesser collection amounts in the digital streaming era, and the time it takes to collect is at least 12 months after your release begins earning.
Hi! We grew up in the same town, it’s crazy to see you on the front page of Reddit. I’ve always been really interested in working on the business side of the music industry (A& marketing) and generally fascinated by songwriting. Just wanted to let you know that I’ve admired your career and always seen you as an example that it IS possible, even if you start out in small town NV. :) I’m just starting out in the professional world but hopeful I’ll find my way to music in some capacity. Any tips for those who are not “connected” or lacking entertainment industry experience? Keep it up :) No way! I'm up at North Shore right now, so wave haha! I'm so glad to hear that you've taken such an interest in the industry and the songwriting process. Appreciate the kind words and thank you for sharing! We all gotta pull ourselves from the mud, being from a small town just means your mud might be a little deeper. If you push yourself towards that trajectory I have no doubt that we'll cross paths one day. Network, network, network. Do your research. Know who works with who in the industry. Familiarize yourself with all things industry related. Do not be afraid to ask questions or "feel" stupid for not knowing things. I have been doing this for 11 years and I honestly still have no idea what I am doing, I just keep showing up and working to get better haha.
I've heard some artists say that their inspiration comes from some kind of invisible thing outside themselves, making it sound to me like some sort of spiritual experience. Have you ever experienced anything like that, as an artist? I've felt that only two times in my life. One time when I made a song that was inspired by the Kurt Cobain 'Montage of Heck' documentary, and another when I spent a week working at the C Room in Abbey Road. The music I left with sounded to me like somebody else spent the week writing songs in my body.
[removed] Absolutely. [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]). I check for submissions weekly.
Do you ever feel isolated? People obviously know who you are, I don't listen to music and even I know you. Do you ever feel like people treat you differently and how has that affected you, if so? I only ever experienced a little bit of this after "The Nights." It's easy to let your mind get carried away when you work in any sort of high profile industry. I think reading too much into that stuff is really unhealthy though. Unless you're some mega superstar, I don't think people really care THAT much.
Is Soundcloud the best way to promote music from new producers? Trying to get back in the game. Definitely not. Get yourself a Tunecore and release some stuff on Spotify. Create an artist page and showcase your talents. The professionalism of sending THAT link over a soundcloud is unmatchable.
Nicholas Furlong, eh? Can we call you Nick fer short? These are the nicknames I am here for.
You’ve been behind some of my favorite songs but I’m curious how’s your Dream artist to work with? I would LOVE to work with The Killers, The Gorillaz, or Tom Morello.
What's the background thought over the song "The Nights" how the lyrics for that song came in your head? The conversations I grew up having with my dad as a kid with stars in my eyes... And the feeling of doing exactly what I said I was going to, making music and traveling the world doing what I love to do, and what he encouraged me to stick with.
Do you earn more if a song you helped with gets famous? The more people buy and stream the song, the more income the song generates, so yes.
You say you got teased for liking rap in a small hillbilly town. I’m genuinely curious if you liked Tupac? His writing style was beautiful. I immediately thought if he may have had a positive influence on your writing. ABSOLUTELY. He was hands down my biggest influence as a kid. Hence why nobody understood it. I learned so much about black American culture and what the struggle and the streets were really about from that. My mom also grew up in Richmond, CA so I had her explaining things in the music and driving me through her old hoods as a kid to appreciate what Pac was saying and to understand that he wasn’t glorifying these things, he was talking about that life experience. Matching his cadence, style, and rhythm when I’d sing along to his music were what taught me to ride a beat when I started writing my own music.
Hey Nick, thank you for doing this! As an aspiring songwriter, I do have a couple of questions: First, what is the best way to self-produce? At the moment, I'm looking for programs that I can use to arrange rough demos for some of my songs. Also, I'm curious how you get inspired to write music. Often I'll just find inspirations at random times, but is there a way to get these inspirations more often? I'd say try some demos of software to find what works for you, also maybe try to use Splice to get the hang of a process or find obscure and cool samples to make your own. There is ZERO trick to inspiration. No action, or process, or pill that will work universally. What works for some, doesn't for others. This is why it's so important to find what is inspiring specifically for you.
Hey Nick! I'm learning guitar. I just like the sound of it and play random things in open tunings. I really want to understand it better. Is there any good way of learning? ps: I like finger picking and trying to learn ocean by john butler and few other songs of him. Honestly, just practice practice and more practice. I don't play any instruments traditionally. Everything I play is by ear, sometimes well, sometimes barely good enough to get by. The main thing is, I'm chucking shit around my studio to make cool noises and record cool parts and having so much fun doing it.
What is the most exciting part about working with someone on a track? How long does it take for a song to be finished normally? The difference of perspective in a collaboration is really cool for me. I get to see how somebody else might envision a song sounding while it's being made. It depends. Sometimes it's done in an hour and we all enjoy the rest of our day, or it takes 8 hours, and multiple days.
What advice would you give to people from countries where music isn't as mainstream and an established profession who still want to involved in some way? I know it sounds crazy, but I would personally probably dream as big as building a team of creatives and executives to create some sort of musical coalition and try to establish a big interest in that region.
What are some workflow, and general productivity tips you could give to a young music producer? Keep a 4D work flow... 4Ds are deleting, delegating, deferring, and doing. Either do the job because you know you can do it well, delegate others to help you finish the job, defer the job to another, or simply delete the opportunity if you cannot deliver.
When are we gonna collab again? It's been over 20 years LOL. This is Sho-Down. Proud of you man, you've come a long way, not many of us left from the old days. So much love for you brother! I would love to work together. So sick we stayed in touch!
No idea you had work with All Time Low, what have you done with them? I co-wrote "Runaways" and "Don't You Go" from Future Hearts, and then co-wrote and co-produced "Dirty Laundry", "Nice2KnoU", "Nightmares", and "Afterglow" on Last Young Renegade.
What would you say was your first big break? I think starting by working under Ryan Tedder's wing definitely helped beef up my chops, and then I'd say maybe 5 Seconds of Summer's debut album was my biggest mainstream success.
Since how long have you like music, and how did you pursue your current career? I knew I wanted to make music from the age of about 15, so I started then and was professionally working at it by age 23.
What music did you collaborate with blink-182 on? I wrote a song with the guys called "Good Old Days" that was released on the California Deluxe.
Why does your painting look like a yu-gi-yoh card? My fiancé painted it randomly and I just loved it so I put it up in my home studio.
Are you sure you aren't just Nick Miller trying to impress Reagan so she'll move into your apartment? Nicholas For Long.
kungfu_unicorn: Hi Nick! You probably won't remember me, but I briefly dated you when I was in high school. Anyway I have to ask you a question or I'll get deleted, so, when do you project your album coming out? What genre is it gonna be? Welcometothejungle: I dated him too! kungfu_unicorn: STOP that is hilarious 😂 youtube.com/watch?v=Ueh5hrUGpZw
Who? wrong sub... Owls
How's Ed doing? Hopefully alive and thriving.
What did you have for breakfast today? Coffee
Hi Nick. HUGE fan here! Hey who makes your favorite VST instruments and plugins? Do you use any as 'workhorse' channels, or do you just use acoustics (piano, guitar etc.) to get something down solid and then graduate from there based on feel? Also, for adding vocals --what is your approach to developing melody? Do you go by heart until you find something that feels right or are you more methodical (picking a mode, playing around with melodies on piano beforehand etc.) Sorry for the detail but I want to steal your secrets! Haha just kidding (not really.) Thanks Fuzzlewhack!
I've been trying to do a lot more with hardware to get imperfections in my recordings or happy accidents as we like to call them. If I'm using VST instruments I'm using Omnisphere, Diva, Serum, Kontakt with my own sample library, or PLAY (for East West orchestra stuff). As far as plugins I'm really into right now, RC-20 Retro Color and FutzBox. Thank me later ;)
Edit: To answer your question about melody. I just kind of hear something in my head and tinker with it and try singing ideas over it or whatever. Sometimes I only hear chords and I can't for the life of me hear a top line melody, but other times I have an entire song mapped out in my head and I sound like some sort of manic lunatic trying to get it all out of my head and into the computer without losing the vision.
What was it like working with 311? Did you all smoke anything while recording? We didn't. Just had a good time making music with buds!
Hi Nicholas, I love "The Nights" it is one of my all time favourites! Who approached who at the start and how long did you guys spend on the song? I approached Ash, and we spent about three months making it til it was in it's final state.
Hey Nick! What’s your song writing process? I really want to make music but find it so hard to write catchy hooks, and choruses! Any tips? Math! Repetition in the right places, bravery in others. A hook for me is a reflex. When I sing something and my body physically leans into it and I have a smile on my face then I know I am chasing the right dragon.
I'm an aspiring music producer, and i find it strange that some artists work with producers and release their songs under their own name and brand, but other artists work with producers and release songs under the producer's name.. Could you enlighten me? Is it just "whoever has a larger audience"? Not really. I think people fail to realize that producers and songwriters LOVE doing what they do, but being an artist means touring it all, the radio morning shows, the promo and press, it’s such a different grind and hard to stay writing and creating in those environments. I decided 11 years ago that sharing my music with the world meant sharing it with other collaborators who put their own touch on the work and then it releases as a part of something bigger than just a self-contained song. One of my favorite things about co-writing is discovering all of the things you wouldn’t have done creatively that others suggested. To me, not being the face of my songs isn’t a big deal because it isn’t and has never been about that. It’s about seeing the song go the distance and the message be received and cherished by so many. THAT feeling is better than any pat on the head.
submitted by 500scnds to tabled [link] [comments]


2020.08.13 00:28 ellielouisepears My sisters friend was almost murdered by a crazy person online in 2013

Okay, hi! This happened to one of my sisters close friends back in 2013 and it is one of the craziest stories I have ever heard and it never fails to make the hair stand up on my arm and my stomach to churn. Trigger warning to anyone who is sensitive to the discussion of date-rape drugs
Okay, so this started soon after my sisters friend and someone I have known since I was 8 years old (Lauren) moved into a new house after getting out of university. She had broken up with her long-term boyfriend after she left school and was ready to meet someone new, so she decided to join a dating site. She soon matched with this guy and they got chatting. They talked for a couple of days and then decided to go out for a meal with each other.
When the day came that they were meeting up, Lauren was in high spirits and was very excited to meet this guy. She arrived at the restaurant and her first impression was good! He was super polite and funny. Halfway through their meal, Lauren began to feel sick and assumed she’d had a bad reaction to something she had ate. The guy was super attentive and kindly offered to drive her home; she was becoming more and more nauseated and unwell so she agreed. She vaguely remembers the car ride home. He kindly walked her up the drive and asked if she wanted him to help her to bed or bring her to the hospital. She didn’t know this guy enough at this point to let him in to her house so she declined and said she was just gonna get some rest.
She went up to bed and fell asleep very quickly. She was awoken to a loud dragging sound from downstairs which sounded like someone was trying to drag her kitchen table across the ground. She freaked out instantly and pushed her dresser across the door and called the police. She explained to the police that she thought someone was in her house and the police were on their way.
The next thing she heard was her front-door slamming open and the police charging in and pinning someone to the ground. She heard a mans voice shouting “okay! Okay” as she assumed they grabbed this guy. She was terrified when she heard a knock on the door that she was sat in front of, but comforted when she realised it was the police. The police said it was best that she didn’t go downstairs as they thought it could be traumatic and it was unnecessary to see what had gone on. She insisted that they let her down and they had no power to stop her so she did.
She was horrified and sick to the stomach when she saw her kitchen table dawned with a clear plastic sheet and two butcher knives and a saw laying on the table.
She was them sent in for toxicology and it was found that she had been roofied heavily and she was incredibly lucky to have woken up. It was soon concluded that when she felt ill and was in a dazed state, this guy had stole her keys and let her into her house whilst keeping the keys, knowing that she wasn’t sharp enough to realise he had stolen them. He waited a while and then walked in and set up the kitchen for a murder or something very sinister.
This guy was charged with attempted murder and is still in prison to this day. Lauren could’ve been the first victim to a serial killer as this guy fit well into the criteria of one - calculated, cunning & charismatic. To anyone reading this, hopefully this is a lesson to be incredibly cautious with both online dating and your drink!
submitted by ellielouisepears to spoopycjades [link] [comments]


2020.08.10 17:57 Dezhitse Why Osana takes so long? pt.2 — Project planning

Hello. Since the first part took off, here I am, turning it into the series. Brace yourself, since this is going to be quite an adventure!
Part 1: https://www.reddit.com/Osana/comments/i4fazm/why_osana_takes_so_long_programmers_point_of_view/
This is a programmer's overview about the mistakes done in Yandere Simulator and how it went this way. Over the coarse of those posts, I shall be re-developing Yandere Simulator from ground up (not really, I am only going to pretend that I am doing it), because it is better to learn from others' mistakes than from your own ones. Despite my target audience is probably only programmers and software engineers, current ones or future ones, I'll try to explain everything in easiest terms possible. If you have some time to read, fasten your seat belts: there will be no stops along this route.
Last time I mentioned that it is going to take another post to describe what is wrong with Yandere Simuator architecture. Of course one can start with words «Technical Debt» and end with them, and this would be technically correct, but we can critique better than that. The best critique describes the problem, proves that something is done wrong and then tells how one should do it better; this is what I am attempting here too. Let us imagine that it is year 2014, and Yandere Simulator has just got the attention from famous YouTubers. Basically, one of the hardest parts in developing any indie video game is getting acclaim. In fact, a lot of indie game developers have no idea if their project would find its player. This stage right now below us, but it is too early to breathe out and call it a day: Yandere Simulator is still making its first steps.
One might say that Yandere Simulator code was already bad at this point. I won't object to this claim. Technically, I can't say it for sure, but what I know is that his first game, Lunar Scythe, wasn't great in terms of coding; Mike Zaimont won't lie. However, the thing is: almost all the projects had the rough launch, no matter if it is a video game or some software. The reason behind this is very simple: you have no idea if this project will be able to take off or not. Maybe no one is going to play your game. It is okay to write something fast to make an earliest possible prototype, and discard it in case if it gains zero traction, moving on to the next idea.
But now we have some positive feedback. Is it alright to proceed to coding? Well, remembering my previous post, it is not: right now it is a perfect time to start refactoring your old code so it does things shorter and quicker, adding unit tests et cetera. However, there is one more thing which is missing. Ladies and gentlemen, let me present you: Analysis stage.
As well as everything else in this field (and maybe in this world), analysis stage is something which won't handle your project on its own: term «paralysis analysis» didn't came out of nowhere, quite a lot of projects have never seen the light of day due to the overly extended analysis stage and over-thinking in general. However, going without analysis at all will probably cripple your project one day no matter how fast you can code: the difference between slow and fast coding in this scenario would be the difference between «you are going nowhere» and «you are going nowhere fast». Look no further than in the very same chat with Mike Z they were talking about the spreadsheets, and Alex said the following:
Nov 20 05:06:38 Taking your advice regarding the spreadsheets would have meant re-writing the entire game from scratch. That's a BIG call to make. I wasn't sure if you were over-reacting or if you misunderstood my system.
In fact, he thought that it was an insult, but this is literally it. Mistakes made during the analysis stage (and not having analysis stage at all is like having all the possible mistakes combined) are the hardest ones to fix. Sometimes the mistakes made during the analysis stage are so severe that they require rewriting the entire project from scratch. In general, the earlier the mistake was made, the harder it is to fix it.
What would have I done in place of Alex back then? Just asked myself a couple questions. Even one day for analysis would have made his life way, way easier. No need for anything sophisticated, just like that:
  1. Which technologies am I going to use to make this game?
  2. Will Yandere Simulator ever support multiplayer?
  3. Will Yandere Simulator ever support saving/loading during the game? Will it only use checkpoint system? What about some other progress tracking system? (maybe password system?)
  4. Is it a dating sim game or a stealth game? Maybe a hybrid? Hybrids are harder to implement.
  5. How many locations I'll be implementing? One, two, three, one for each enemy?
  6. How many game mechanics I'll need? Inventory? Crafting? Hacking? Worshiping the Chaos Gods (this one is actually in the game, by the way)? Increasing player stats? Talent tree? Health? Stamina? Sanity? Hunger? Battle Royale mode?
  7. Can player be a good girl and achieve the victory without killing and harming anyone?
  8. What about the opposite - nuking the entire school in day one?
  9. Is it a sandbox game or a plot-driven game?
First, getting the part about the technologies correct probably belongs to the latter stage, but there is a rule of thumb here for any novice developer: you have the luxury to decide right now. Just simply pick the technology which you know the best. However, make sure that the thing you know is not too obscure for game development: writing your game in JavaScript is probably alright if it is the only thing you know, but don't berate yourself later when you'll have to rewrite your game in, say, C#, yet again wasting precious time. There are no such things as bad languages and good languages, but you should be aware that every language has its purpose. This is a little bit subjective, but, for instance, C offers great portability and the ability to work on any hardware, but is pretty much nightmarish to code huge projects on; just don't tell this to the maintainers of Linux kernel, which now has approximately 25M+ source lines of code. C++ is now a de-facto standard in video game engines, but it is quite complex and you have to always plan ahead one or two more steps (but still less than in pure C). In turn, C and C++ can give you an unmatched performance if done right. C# and Java are general-purpose languages and thus are fine for almost everything. Java is also very portable, so your game will run on any machine supporting Java Runtime Environment, which is pretty much everywhere. Ruby and Python are great for quick prototyping. Haskell is great for geeking out and showing everyone online that you did something on Haskell. JavaScript has the word «Script» in its name, so it was first and foremost designed as a scripting language, right?
Next, in my opinion, the last point about the sandbox and plot-driven design, is the one which is messed up so much. It is alright to experiment; I am not saying that mixing sandbox style gameplay and plot-driven gameplay is impossible, I am only saying that it is an extremely hard task to do correctly. A hypothetical example: rival X has a grudge vs. student Y, which player can exploit to own advantage, but what if player already killed student Y previously without being explicitly asked to do so? It basically means that you have to program rival X twice: with student Y alive and student Y dead. For indie developer, it could have been much better to focus on either sandbox style game or on plot-driven game without mixing those too much, because it is simply too hard to do so.
Part about the locations is tricky too. There is one main location the game, the A-whatchamacallit High School. There is a game called The Stanley Parable, and it is about replaying the very first part of the game a lot by design. Developers admitted that they remade the part before two doors until it turned out to be perfect: not too long, not too short, not too bland, not too distracting. And this was a necessity in that case! What about the Yandere Simulator? Won't players get bored to see the same school corridors over, and over, and over throughout the course of fifty in-game days? Ten rivals multiplied by five days per week give us quite a lot of time to spend in one and only environment, isn't it? Moreover, since school does not change, you'll have to make all the challenge coming up from the other characters only. Hello, Mrs. Raibaru!
See? This is why analysis stage is so goddamn useful! A couple of trivial questions laid out on a sheet of paper, and there are at least two points that does not seem right from the get-go. Again, analysis should not be 100% precise: we can, say, add the «good girl» route later even if we decided not to do it during the first evaluation. Our goal is not to lay down a strict requirement plan like «our new rocket should fly for at least 1000 miles and bypass those missile defense systems», this is not military nor scientific application. Our only goal right now is to map the approximate plan towards the minimum viable product and try our best to avoid possible mistakes associated with it. This plan will change in the future, it is inevitable, but our goal is to at least try not to miss anything crucial.
Okay, suppose that we've done with the analysis stage. The next stage after the analysis is actual implementation… nope. It is the design stage. Analysis stage answers the question «what am I doing?», while design stage answers the question «how am I supposed to do so?». Having all the answers from the analysis stage, we can now clearly make up the list of things which would be hard and tricky to implement vs. the list of easy things. Let's see…
  1. Pathfinder: Hard. There would be a lot of students present in the school at the same time, and they all will be moving around at the same time. Most of the time, pathfinder should be able to be as fast as possible, since students' default routines are the same every time, and we can use this to our advantage, but, on the other hand, pathfinder should be robust enough to navigate across the environment during emergencies (e.g. spotted someone's blood etc).
  2. Students and student AI: The hardest one. Since we decided to make a Hitman/Persona hybrid in sandbox environment, AI should be top notch to handle the Persona part in said environment. Since we want to represent a variety of characters, from cowards to heroes, from loners to social butterflies, we want our AI system to be incredibly flexible. AI should be able to react to different stress factors, ideally in a different ways depending on a character itself. AI should also be able to inherit some behavior without copy-pasting the code, e.g. all the characters from the drama club should probably share parts of their AI regarding participating in said club, but being a little bit different too on their own, since they are all humans, and, as Mr. Rogers said, everyone is special. All students should share some behavior (e.g. attending classes, for instance), all teachers should share some behavior, and there also will be some unique persons, mainly rivals, whose AI will be incredibly tricky and complex on top of that.
  3. Physics: Easy. Since we picked up Unity engine, it already does all the things we'll need out of the box.
  4. The same goes with renderer. Our goal would be just not screwing up here.
  5. Inventory system: Easy, since we decided «no crafting» and this is not the main focus of the game.
  6. Character development and progression: Easy, since we are not going to reinvent Path of Exile or whatever.
  7. Anti-cheat prevention, client-server architecture etc.: non-existent, since our game is a single player experience.
  8. Story-related things, like dramatic camera movement and cutscenes: Medium, due to our hybrid requirements regarding plot/sandbox game.
  9. Combat: Easy or Medium, depending on our goals. A lot of people will definitely try forcing out the solution by murdering everything in sight. Yes, there are no guns in Yandere Simulator nor there are any cool blade dancing moves, but we should have at least something in place for those players, right? Like, say, minigames or QTEs. On the other hand, combat in some games can be deliberately done clunky and primitive just to show the player that doing it Rambo style is not the proper way; Pathologic 2 is a good example of such approach. Even better example is Infra Arcana roguelike: it awards player with experience for seeing monsters and not for killing them, heavily hinting that fighting is not the only option, which definitely fits to its Lovecraftian theme.
  10. Configuration files: I'd put Medium here. Yes, we can always hard-code everything into the game, since we do not care about modding support at all, but leaving things — say, certain enemy's aggressiveness or suspicion level — in the config files will allow us to fix those values without rebuilding the game, and, if you reload config files each time you enter the scene, even without restarting the game. His previous game, Lunar Scythe, used spreadsheets as its configuration, so I assume that Yandere Simulator uses some similar mechanism too, but I might be wrong.
  11. And on, and on, and on…
Don't think about the hardest points only as the hurdles that you'll have to overcome: they can turn into the major selling point if done right. And, in fact, right now Alex is still struggling with the AI, but a well thought plan could have prevented that.
After all this trouble, we can finally proceed to laying down our implementation design. This would be described in my next post.
Instead, now I am going to show you why the lack of the analysis and design stages, even in minuscule amounts, is bad for your project. Let's pick the first one, the pathfinder, and analyze why the lack of foresight about the pathfinder hurts Yandere Simulator. It is also a great opportunity to talk about the game performance.
As I've already said in my previous post, low game FPS does not hurt you as the developer, since you can debug your game on 20 FPS as well as on 60 FPS (however, loading times are of the different story, since they move son into his «not coding» state for quite a while). In fact, one absolute madman has already done one hour long Yandere Simulator code analysis video, with profiling and benchmarks. In short, he deduced that Yandere Simulator spends the most time rendering and pathfinding routines, scripts does not take much in comparison (that does not mean that one shouldn't start optimizing them too, of course: they are still slow, but there are even more urgent things to fix in terms of performance). Sadly, I can't give you any insight about rendering, since I am not familiar with Unity engine at all, I only know about bare bones OpenGL, although I am pretty sure it has something to do with insane models' triangle counts or whatever is it called (meshes? faces? polygons? I am a complete newbie here!). I am only going to say that the larger your models are, the slower your game boots up. However, we can have a talk about the pathfinder part. The part, which was mostly omitted in that video above.
Let's say that you own a knife. This knife is a survival knife and it is a great multi-purpose tool. You can use your knife to cut branches off trees. You can use it to cut meat in parts before cooking it. You can use it as a self-defense weapon. But what if only care about the self-defense part, specifically in the urban surroundings? In this case there is a better specialized tool — a can of pepper spray (a pistol or a taser if you live in the United States), which was made specifically for that purpose. Of course, you can still use the knife for self-defense, but you will be at a disadvantage in comparison to the easy to use nonlethal hit and run solution without the possibility of getting «end up in jail yourself» easter egg ending. Survival knife is invaluable because it is useful for a lot of things at once without weighing you down much, but it will never beat up the specialized solutions: a saw to cut down tree branches, a kitchen knife to slice a piece of meat, and so on.
This also applies to programming. Of course, there is nothing wrong in going with the knife in generic cases: reinventing the wheel is not something you'd want to do if you decided to write a game already. It does not mean that you are forbidden to do so: making your light but still full-fledged game engine from scratch will turn you from amateur coder to professional programmer and is quite an accomplishment on its own. However, things that are marked as «Hard» in the list above probably require their own specialized solution, at least eventually. Of course, you can always start with something standard, but you should always keep in mind that this solution is temporary and has to be phased out by a more effective code one day, either in terms of effectiveness or in terms of code complexity, more often than not — both of those.
Yandere Simulator uses A* search algorithm, and this algorithm is actually very good on its own! A* works on a graph) (in fact, it operates on a tree formed by all the paths from a given vertex in that graph, but those are details). Graph is basically a set of points (school junctions and points of interest) which can be connected with each other via edges (corridors and walkways). Edges can have their distance set, in which case graph is called «weighted graph»: longer corridors correspond to the longer distance. We also need to provide it with our current position, our destination and with so-called heuristics function just to speed things up, and this is it: A* generates a shortest route from starting point to finishing point. In case if there are multiple shortest routes, it'll output one of them depending on the underlying implementation of the algorithm and on the rounding errors if you represent your distances using floating point numbers.
Do you see the problem already? No, this is not about the fact that school isn't a graph and should be turned into one beforehand, which takes time, especially considering that other students and some physical objects can be obstacles by themselves, albeit this is valid too: have a graph too detailed, and your algorithm will perform like that, enumerating too many vertices in its path (remember that it has to be done for each student in regular intervals!). Have a graph too coarse, and students will start to get stuck in wide corridors seemingly out of nowhere.
There is actually a bigger problem.
Have you ever wondered why students walk in straight lines, forming a long «student trains» and in general behave like a group of skeletons reanimated by a powerful necromancer? (source video). Re-read the paragraph about the A* algorithm. Given vertices A and B, it always returns the shortest path from A to B. It means that no matter the student, he or she will always go from point A to point B in the very same path, the one which is proven to be the shortest one even if there is a path through the empty corridor nearby, which is longer by just one percent. Even if there happens to be two or more paths of the same distance, which is not going to happen often anyway, A* will always pick the same one out of them. This is not how humans operate at all. A* algorithm was developed for the robotics, and this is exactly the feeling you get from Yandere Simulator right now: they are just a bunch of androids who solve the task of perfectly navigating through the complex environment with a set of obstacles, wasting a ton of CPU resources while doing so.
While A* algorithm gets the job done in general, it does not mean that it is perfect for your task. I'd probably done the following if I were you. First of all, since the school has static structure, it is alright to add waypoints throughout the locations. Waypoints are a set of imaginary points which will help my algorithm to determine junctions and points of interest. Then, I'd go with fast but approximate algorithm, most likely some sort of depth-first search variation, since it is quite similar to the way humans navigate through mazes: try the first path, then go for the second one if the first one failed and so on. Again, we do not want a perfect solution, we want a solution which looks like as if it was done by a real human being. Even better, this algorithm should ideally be randomized so each student can select different paths to get from point A to point B, avoiding «student trains». It can be also parametrized so different students will lean towards different paths (maybe somebody really likes walking near windows to look onto beautiful scenery!). Again, it does not have to be perfect: do you recall the last time when you calculated the perfect path from your home to nearby grocery store and then proved that all the other paths are longer than the calculated one? This is what A* does by design.
See? We haven't started coding yet, but we were already able to solve one of the problems which plagues Yandere Simulator from year 2014, the one which probably already wasted hours on top of hours of developer's time to patch out, not very successfully for obvious reasons.
And this is why analysis and design stages are so powerful if done properly.
P.S. Thanks to two redditors for pointing out the mistake in my previous post regarding jump tables in if statements. Yes, only the switch statements can be translated into jump tables, at least by gcc. Of course, any performance gains from turning if's into switch statements would be minuscule, if any, unless maybe running it in a very tight loop with thousands of thousands of iterations, which Yandere Simulator doesn't do, as far as I know. In fact, judging by Yandere Simulator code, I am not sure if author knows about loops at all. Just kidding of course, but it is said that there is a grain of truth in every joke.
This post is not an exception: I am human too, and I sometimes make mistakes. Any corrections are welcome!
Bonus: I saved the yummiest thing for the last. I think that I found the class Alex uses as the pathfinder. To quote the author of said class:
This AI is the default movement script which comes with the A* Pathfinding Project. It is in no way required by the rest of the system, so feel free to write your own. But I hope this script will make it easier to set up movement for the characters in your game. This script is not written for high performance, so I do not recommend using it for large groups of units.
Isn't that funny?
submitted by Dezhitse to Osana [link] [comments]


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