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GAMING

SILVERSHIELD BARD

Bards of the Silver Shield have extremely loud voices, and they are not afraid to use them. In battle, the Bard’s song can unify and hasten a team, and their maximum volume has the power to scare away possessing spirits. In the University of Illumination, these musical enthusiasts are trained and ingrained for years in the official sanctioned Lore of the Silver Shield. What they lack in vocal talent, the Bards make up for in storytelling, humor, and wit.

This week’s battle challenge was fun. The SILVERSHIELD BARD, like any other 1 mana card, is a must-have and a keeper of an NFT. If she can survive the battle with her limited health, she’ll remove any negative effects the enemy has caused your front monster.

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As you can see, she’s not that expensive. This isn’t financial advice or anything, but I guarantee she will be worth over a dollar one day. It could be a year or longer though.

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My enemy used the hard to beat Living Lava, but we were still able to earn a victory. My SILVERSHIELD BARD served as empty bait for their Serpentine Spy. Although I was happy to earn a victory, I really wanted to show this card in action so I played again.

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This time her ability was useful. She removed the Pit Ogre’s stun on my Sacred 🦄 Unicorn so we could win again.

Great service

Splinterlands is a great game but they also have some of the best customer service I have ever seen in my life. My student who’s good at the game, but doesn’t own a PC, wanted to sell some DEC and invest in CUB so I told him to send it to me and I would take care of it. Something went wrong when I tried to use the bridge to the Binance Smart ⛓️ Chain. I didn’t know what to do so I emailed customer support at Splinterlands. To my surprise, they had replied within 5 minutes and fixed the problem. Here’s what they said in the email,

I am very sorry about that, it looks like there was an error with our BSC bridge. The DEC tokens have just been sent back to your account in the game and the issue with the bridge should now be fixed so you can try withdrawing them again and please let us know if you run into any other issues.

I was so impressed with their speedy resolution that I sent them a thank you email and they replied with this,

Well, we fixed the issue with the BSC bridge as soon as we were alerted to it, but it looks like we didn’t see that you had a failed transaction until you contacted us. In any case, we do try to resolve any issues around failed crypto transactions asap and we make sure that no one loses any tokens or assets as a result of our systems.

In this day of age where most companies use cookie-cutter copy and paste fake email replies, it’s really nice to actually have a human take the time to understand, use proper grammar, and fix the problem within minutes. Thank you Splinterlands.

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My battles:
https://steemmonsters.com?p=battle&id=165d9d12a1a47bd2f8410a0781f2c8f86cf354be&ref=jeremiahcustis

https://steemmonsters.com?p=battle&id=aaf92a9a837d6f835a51bfa02cea216653181328&ref=jeremiahcustis

This week’s challenge:
https://peakd.com/splinterlands/@splinterlands/share-your-battle-weekly-challenge-silvershield-bard

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GAMING

PEACEFUL GIANT

There have always been stories of Giants in the Splinterlands, but recently they began to arrive. They bring tales of a home far across the water that they had to flee from a terrible threat. Luckily, these refugee Giants mean no harm to the Splinterlands. Most of them arrived by swimming across the entire Outer Ocean.

The giant may be a pacifist, but he’ll help you win when used at the right times. If you’re a strong magic or ranged player, he’ll work well as a shield in the front or the rear. We sadly killed all of the Earth’s giants after they built our pyramids and won our wars. I miss them. Shame on us for their enslavement, extinction, and cover-up! At least they peacefully battle on in the Splinterlands. For now… Can NFTs go extinct?

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Oh no! I got a rich Gold carded higher-level enemy. I sometimes feel like the game’s AI has a conspiracy against me and always gives my enemies a bunch of misses. Not today. I was lucky and got way more misses and won this battle. Much thanks to the Peaceful Giant. He gave his life for our victory today. All of the DEC earned in today’s battle will go to his family. There aren’t that many giants left. Maybe we should refrain from using them in battle from now on…

My battle:
https://steemmonsters.com?p=battle&id=30fd0c092367a496d695f48e18668650042aeb8e&ref=jeremiahcustis

This week’s challenge:
https://peakd.com/splinterlands/@splinterlands/share-your-battle-weekly-challenge-peaceful-giant

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GAMING

Who wants a GAME BOY when you can have a GAME MAN?

This is a serious DIY project requiring a large squared 3D printer, the silicon guts of an old-school NES or Famicom, screen, and some serious soldering skills. Nintendo could’ve made this happen in the early 1990s . Hopefully, 3D printers get to the point where we can just straight-up print stuff like this soon.

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Where does it end though? If you can encrypt, hide, go off-grid, or whatever we do in the future to avoid Big Brother, what’s going to stop us from printing advanced weapons? I want to print a bunch of T-800s to guard my house, play basketball with, and walk the dog. They will challenge everyone with the standard security question,

Who is your daddy and what does he do?

Cult 3D:
https://cults3d.com/en/3d-model/game/nintendo-game-man-oversize-game-boy-famicom-hack

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GAMING

SUPER MARIO 64: Smash Bowser with your Browser

I’ve been emulating this game as soon as I knew it was possible to do so back in the late 1990s. Nothing will ever beat playing the real thing with that awkward alien-looking controller, but this in-browser port works beautifully. It’s smooth. You can save your game and the sound works too.

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After reading this post by Nintendo Life, I thought I’d give it a try…

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The instructions pop up when you start the game. It’s a good layout if you’re using a keyboard. You should be able to play this on your Android phone if you have a keyboard. I tried loading this with the Brave browser first. I could play the game smoothly, but could not hear any sound or save, so I tried again with Google Chrome

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It was too hard for me to jump on the log to free Chain Chop (the big attacking ball) so I hiked to the top again. Hopefully it saves my game this time…

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Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoy this online-in-browser-port as much as I do. Now let’s kick Bowser’s ass!

Resources:

https://froggi.es/mario/

https://www.nintendolife.com/news/2021/04/you_can_play_super_mario_64_in_your_browser

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GAMING

Fire Spitter NFT Battle Challenge

Small but mighty, the Fire Spitters have recently descended upon the Dragon Splinter of Draykh-Nahka, where they fit right in. They come from a faraway exotic place only known as the Pocket Dimension. The Pocket Dimension has many key differences to the Splinterlands, but lots of things in common as well. Most of the monsters there are smaller than those native to the Splinterlands, including the Fire Spitter. However, even the smallest Fire Spitters can produce a magnificent blaze, large enough to easily incinerate a cottage in a few minutes.

I remember when Splinterlands used to reward this card out like it was candy. It’s now worth over sixty cents! I would like to request an interesting and maybe even depressing bot that shows what all the cards we’ve ever owned would be worth if we never sold, burned, or combined them. If I had just HODLed every card I’ve been rewarded over the years, I would easily have $10,000 now, but I was dumb, broke, greedy, and emotional, so I’ll have to work my way back from monster bottom just like I’ve done two times before. While it’s very exciting that NFTs are selling for millions of dollars, Splinterlands has been making NFTs accessible as rewards for gameplay for years. Even though I regret selling so many of my cards I always remind myself that this whole NFT gaming journey all began with just $10. Show me any other NFT site where all you need is $10 and can grow that into a champion account over time. Right now I don’t know of a better decentralized blockchain-based game than Splinterlands. Do you?

My Fire Spitter Battle:

It took me forever to get a victory, let alone a chance for my Fire Spitter to be useful, but this battle had it safely positioned in the middle helping take out the enemy’s lead monster with a ranged attack of 2. The Fire Spitter is also useful during earthquakes because as a dragon, of course, it can fly. Thank you for reading. Check out my battle: https://steemmonsters.com?p=battle&id=550f392e715608a2c49e04f4af9d6101689262e6&ref=jeremiahcustis

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LIFE TRAVEL

Rainy Wednesday Walk around Luang Prabang and Massage

I grew up in Seattle and was in the army so the rain ain’t no thing for me. Especially in a tropical environment. When I was in North Carolina for my job training, I remember it raining, then freezing, and having icicles on my hat, so I now feel this warm rain is refreshing and relaxing.

I find it quite amusing when it starts to rain and everyone runs away for cover like ants. What are they afraid of? If your clothes get wet, just wash them. You get completely wet when you take a shower so why is it so horrible when you have your clothes on?

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I also don’t have a problem swimming in this dirty brown Mekong River. The only time I won’t go in is if I have any open wounds. (I don’t want to waste money on antibiotics to kill the cellulitis and not be able to drink for a week.) Everyone always warns it’s dangerous and that I’ll die. From what? Is there a giant anaconda down there? Crocodiles? Maybe the story of the fire-breathing river monster is true. Most people think I’m weird, but I find their always living in fear and slaving away for fiat weird.

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This statue of Buddha appreciated the rain. It helped clean it and look good for this picture. I like the story of the Buddha’s enlightenment. One day while he was praying or meditating it started to rain very heavily and a giant king cobra came around him and expanded its hood flared neck to protect him from the rain.

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I’m sure that the monks can see me from their rooms but it feels really cool to come to an ancient temple and be all alone.

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One of my favorite temples in Luang Prabang is hidden on a hill on this corner. It’s not something you can see from the street, so I was living here almost two years before I found this gem.

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If you leave the city and go into the jungle, you’ll see people using these old American bombs to build their houses. The CIA led a secret war here that saw more bombs dropped than all of WWII. They were made of high-quality metal so are still a threat. Cluster bombs still kill and injure 300 people a year. As an American, I feel very sad that my government did this to these wonderful people and never took responsibility for the damage and death it’s still causing today.

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On an opposite note, peace. Can you spot the PEACE ☮️ bricks in the center of this picture? All buildings in Laos display their construction year. I’ve noticed almost every building from the 1970s used these peace bricks.

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Even when I ask my friends, who’ve spent years as monks, what all these paintings mean, they always don’t know. There’s a meaning and history in each scene. Good luck finding out what they are though.

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I do know about the giants though. Almost every temple will have them somewhere to protect it from evil.

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Which is your favorite Buddha image?

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I treated myself to a long-overdue massage. It felt so good because I’ve been wanting one for over a year. It only costs $6 for an hour oil massage that was one of the best I’ve ever had. I had hurt my back a bit doing wild slides at the water park so the oil massage was just what I needed to end this lovely rainy day.

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Thanks for enjoying this rainy Wednesday walk around Luang Prabang with me today. Have a good one!

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GAMING

Naga Fire Wizard NFT Battle Challenge

The Flame Naga of the Burning Lands are tough. Not only are they extremely intelligent and skilled in every known weapon, but they have recently been taught magic by order of the Flaming Robe. In the last Mount Mox tournament season, the Flame Wizards really cleaned up.

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Splinterlands, my favorite game, gives you the chance to win NFT battle cards which you can use in rumbles, sell, rent, burn, lend, or just HODL. It’s up to you. Your cards are your cards. Every week they have a battle challenge focusing on a different card.

This is a strong card right from the beginning as it has a shield which protects against melee and ranged attacks at level one and the thorn ability at level five which usually hurts enemies more than they do you when attacked. Even if there is just one heart left, that thorn ability can take out shields or even kill the attacker setting up the monsters behind you for better chances at victory.

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I took a screenshot of my battle above. You can see me at the bottom. I belong to the Mandalorians Guild. We are ranked about the 50th guild. Joining a guild helps build a community within the game as well as earning bonus crypto for every victory, buildings, and brawls.

I put out the chicken first in a classic Splinterlands move. It costs nothing and has just one heart, but a powerful monster will usually waste its first attack on the chicken. After they killed my dog, I was getting worried, but the Naga Fire Wizard‘s shield ability saved the day winning us the victory. Thank you for reading. Check out my battle here: https://steemmonsters.com?p=battle&id=a3673b748985446fa041c9601dca28309117c384&ref=jeremiahcustis

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TRAVEL

March Sunset Bike Ride through Luang Prabang 🚲

The town isn’t that big, but I don’t like walking around when it’s hot. Most people like to come out at sunset to socialize, ride bikes, play football, take pictures, or just walk around and enjoy the beautiful sites. I took all of these videos today using my Samsung Phone and edited them with the free Android App, Movie Maker. Maybe they changed their app name to Best Movie since that’s the watermark they added to the video. The free version only lets you share videos at 720p. Lao New Year is only a month away. There will be many people wearing traditional clothing, drinking beer, and splashing water on each other. I’ll most likely get a swim in the river and some video like last year. If you visit here, I recommend renting a bicycle if you only plan to stay in town. I’ve seen too many tourists wreck their bikes, have them stolen, or get shaken down by the cops to recommend renting one. I’ve never seen anyone get in trouble for riding a bicycle. Thanks for checking out my video today. I hope you enjoyed it. Have a happy March!

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TRAVEL

Ancient Temples of Luang Prabang

Some of the temples in Laos are over 700 years old. They were most likely places of worship even longer than that. There also are these giant jars that are thousands of years old and no one has any idea who made them, how, or why. The locals have stories that they were used for brewing beer by giants.

There are so many temples in Luang Prabang that you could live here for years and not see them all.

There are famous temples where tour guides will take you, but there are also many hidden gems no one has ever publicly photographed or can be found on the internet.

These gargoyles represent the story of Buddha’s enlightenment. While he was meditating, a large serpent wrapped around and protected him from the rain. Even though they are mostly Buddhist here, there are still signs of Hinduism in the designs of the statues.

You will often see sticky rice in the mouths of the gargoyles as an offering and thanks for their protection.

If you ever get lost in Luang Prabang, look up and you’ll see the golden Phousi pagoda. There are many ways to hike up with great viewpoints and Buddhas to see. The whole town worked together to lift the construction materials needed by working together as a bucket brigade or human chain.

I captured this shot at sunset at Xiengthong Temple which was built in the 1500s. I imagine that way back then there were fewer distractions so they maintained the flowers and buildings even better than they do today.

This is a cemetery for Vietnamese who’ve passed away here. Since some of them were Christian, they were buried. Buddhists usually cremate their dead, but will sometimes have some small shrine with their picture containing their ashes here. I don’t think a lot of people ever visit this place because it’s at the edge of town and is creepy in a haunted way.

My friends always want to meet for lunch at noon or one which I’m always reluctant to do because of the heat at that time of the day, but it’s great for getting bright shots like this. I have no idea the name or location of this temple, I just saw it out of the corner of my eye while riding down a random road.

This would make for a cool animated GIF NFT work of art. I would have energy flow from the roots up and out of the leaves then blessing all creatures around it. If you steal this picture and my idea you have Buddha’s blessing, I’ll be very happy for you too. I’d love to see it, but I don’t know how to make it. I can’t wait until we can just scan our thoughts then create NFT works of art in seconds. It will be so fun for artistic-minded, but not tech-savvy people.

Thank you for exploring these historic temples with me today. I took these over the course of a year using cheap Samsung phones, but good lighting. If you’ve never visited Luang Prabang, it’s in the center of Laos. It was the capital before 1975. It is under UNESCO protection so it won’t change. It’s very likely you could wait twenty years before you came here and found your pictures resemble mine. There is a good vibe and cool weather a third of the time while it will be hot or raining the rest of the year. Most food is delicious, organic, and cheap. Hopefully, you get the chance to visit one day.

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LIFE TV

Amend: The Fight for America

The Union may have won the military victory during the Civil War, but racist southerners won the cultural war. Even after a hundred years since the 14th Amendment became law, many Americans had to fight for their right to be seen as equal by their states and the federal government. Amend: The Fight for America shares the stories of the many Americans who stood for and even died for equality.

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Netflix

Fredrick Douglass

At first, I was thrown off by the actor who was quoting Fredrick Douglass because he looks nothing like him but, then there was Pedro Pascal as Abraham Lincoln and other Hollywood stars quoting people of different ages, sex, and race. Samuel L. Jackson portrayed Martin Luther King Jr. well, but at no point did he say, “I’m sick of these motherfucking racists on this motherfucking continent!”

Fredrick Douglass is remembered as the greatest speaker of the 19th century. He could give a speech to a huge crowd and change their hearts and opinions with his amazing words. He will always be remembered as an early champion for civil rights, but I don’t think most people realize what a bad-ass he was. One day, while his master, who was also most likely his father, was giving young Douglass a beating. He decided then and there that he wasn’t going to take it anymore! While Maryland and his master viewed him as property, he was in fact a free man! He then beat the shit out of his master and told him that if the other slaves found out about it that he would lose face, so they’d both never speak of it again. He ran away and published his book which would only put a huge target on his back for southern slave catchers. He even tried to get a commission as an officer in the Union Army which the president was in favor of, but the army would not allow.

Heavy Weight Champion

How would you feel if you won the belt for the UFC heavyweight, but Dana White told you that you are in fact the champion, but your prize money and belt would actually go to the loser? Well, that’s what happened after the Civil War. The 14th Amendment had passed and slavery was outlawed but terrorist groups like the KKK, racist politicians, and a corrupt Supreme Court made it a worthless gesture. It wasn’t until Martin Luther King Jr. and his brilliant strategy of non-violent disobedience helped to end Jim Crow. If I had a time machine, I’d really love to take Will Smith, the main narrator of the series, and Martin Luther King Jr. back in time to meet Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. They would have a lot to talk about and it would make for the most epic podcast of all time.

Equality for All

This Netflix original series doesn’t just focus on the struggle of black Americans, but all Americans who had to fight for their rights. It begins with the Civil War and leads all the way up to the present day. There are some people, that sadly, I’d never heard of until watching this documentary six-part series. It doesn’t matter what religion, sex, race, or orientation you are because the United States Constitution gives you unalienable rights even if you are NOT a citizen. It’s important that we know our rights and the heroes who gave everything to make our rights a reality. History and Civics teachers will be assigning Amend: The Fight for America to their students as required viewing for many years to come.

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