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Messages - ycleption

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General Discussion / I'm not dead.
« on: July 20, 2011, 10:16:30 pm »
Hey everyone,
This is just a short note, to let everyone know I am still alive... However, due to problems with my computer, and just general being busy, its unlikely I will be around much. I really didn't mean to let this absence last so long, it just sort of happened.

I'd also like to offer my sincere apologies to everyone I had RP with - and an even bigger apology to the GMs who I had been working with, and my fellow CAs.

I will try and pop in to check PMs, if anyone wants to get a hold of me. Hope everything is going well in Layoland :-)


The Dragon Storm Campaign / Sederra Defense RP thread
« on: March 07, 2011, 11:03:13 am »
//For those who attended the Sederra Defense quest, a place for RP before the next session. I am assuming that we are resting a bit, and have some time to talk:

*Pallena turns to Steel* Right. We need to know more about this potential means to neutralize the poison. You've been awfully vague. If I can find a tree, I can travel out of here... I'm sure some of the magickers here have those books that can do the same thing. If one of us can get to whoever is making the thing, we need to know.

Aside from that, we need to decide what we are doing. Are we going to hold here and guard against whatever comes, or are we - or at least some of us - going to take the fight to the cult at that oasis?

Aside from that, do any of you magickers know anything about the poison? Do you know if more mundane magicks do anything at all to it? At least contain its spread, if not eliminate the harm?

*folds arms and looks at the party with a gaze demanding answers*
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Forum Discussion / PMs - two suggestions
« on: March 04, 2011, 10:31:45 am »
Is it at all possible to increase the number of people who can be included in a single PM?

And can we please please pretty please get a "reply all" button, if it is possible?

The following users thanked this post: Filatus, Anamnesis, Hellblazer, willhoff

Roleplaying / thanks
« on: October 26, 2010, 11:11:19 pm »
This is just a quick thanks to the various DMs who have given xp bops over the last week - I do believe that RP is its own reward, but its really nice to get a little mechanical reward as well.

So thanks :-)
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Forum Discussion / file attachments
« on: July 18, 2010, 05:34:16 pm »
Is it possible to be able to give users the ability to add file attachments to PMs in the same way we can to forum posts?

If it is possible, are there reasons why it isn't implemented? It would be really lovely to have that ability, for a variety of reasons.

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NWN Ideas, Suggestions, Requests / Druidic stuff.
« on: July 12, 2010, 04:00:30 pm »
Now, I know what you all are thinking: "*groan* not another person making self-interested posts trying to make their favorite class better."

And, to a certain extent that is true. But, I want to emphasize, I am not trying to make the druid class more powerful with these changes - I am trying to make the class reflect a little better their role, as I see it, in Layonara. And, I will admit, it is a struggle to try and come up with some things that are appropriate without being unbalancing. I will be the first to admit that druids are a powerful class to begin with, but they do have some noticable holes in their reperatoire. I use cleric for comparison purposes quite a bit, as they are the other class that has a full nine levels of spells, yet also has combat emphasis. Most of my suggestions are ones that I hope are not too difficult to implement - feel free to correct me if that's not the case, all ye with coding skills.

  • Weapon enhancements. (okay, I lied, this one I admit would make druids more powerful) Everyone who can cast a spells gets some form of them, except druids. GMW seems a little over-powered, as does flameblade/darkfire - on the other hand, Clerics get both, so one or the other might not be too overpowering. The ranger's blade thirst might be a good candidate for a druid spell, with the whole redistributing primal forces, balanced healing as you harm kinda thing, except the slashing/piercing requirement would leave a lot of druids out in the cold, (yes, there are druids who don't use scimitars exclusively). Of all the weapon enchantments, however, bless weapon seems the most thematically appropriate to druids - ending the scourge of undead and aberrant creatures and all that. Since it's a level one paladin spell, level three druid spell would be a relatively close approximation - but, if people feel that's too powerful, make it a level four or five spell instead.
  • Speaking of undead... Druids really aren't that good at it. In Layo, clerics are not really about harming undead (necessarily), but still have all the anti-undead mojo. Druids, on the other hand, while very diverse, often take up that mantle of going after undead, as they harm the balance. People are always surprised when I tell them the spells that Pallena can't cast. Other than cure/heal, druids get two very nice high-level anti-undead spells, sunbeam and sunburst.. and that's it. And they're at the same spell level, so its difficult to really have an undead arsenal. So, one possible solution would be to move one of the spells a slot higher or lower. Another would be to give druids something like undeath to death (which even wizards get), at level six or seven. Searing light might also be a nice addition for low level characters.

  • Defensively, druids also suffer at the hands of undead. Druids get death ward, which is nice, but again, that's all. Undeath's eternal foe and Shadow shield would be thematically appropriate, but as they are the singe best group and individual defensive spells in the game, they might be a bit unbalancing. Negative energy protection seems to me to be an appropriate spell to give to druids - again, if its viewed as being unbalancing, kick it up to level five or six druid spell, or something along those lines.
  • On high level spells more generally: Druids get two special druid spells at high levels: Nature's Flow, and Nature's Balance. Both have nice druidy names and descriptions... but are rather useless. The big problem with nature's flow is the DR that it gives you. When nature's flow is cast, it overwrites the DR from stoneskin or similar spells (and Pallena at least lives and dies with her greater stoneskin), and leaves you defenseless when it expires. Maybe the DR could be changed to an AC increase or to concealment instead? Nature's Balance... I don't think I've even ever seen the spell cast. I can think of some situations where it might be useful, but the downsides seem pretty large for a level nine spell - compare to implosion, for instance - both affect up to four enemies... but implosion doesn't have the severe downsides. Its rather unfortunate, but Storm of Vengeance so outstrips the other ninth level spells, there really isn't very much reason to memorize anything else... and so the spells loses its awe and cool druidy storm factor. Having another spell or two with comparable oomph would help.
  • A while ago there were discussion about changing the Shapechange spell to have some other forms for various reasons (see here). I have no idea whether this is something that could easily be implemented... but its sure would be nice to have something that reflects nature more. Shapechange sure sounds like a great druid spell, but right now the red dragon form is really the only thing that seems vaguely druidy -  I mean, why on earth would a druid want to shift into an iron golem? As far as I'm concerned, the stats could stay the same, but if the shapes could be changed to, say, griffons, or ancient dire wolverines, or the Voltrexian penguin of doom ;) It would really turn the spell into something that could have some RP use.

  • Finally... Again, no idea if this is even possible, but it would be really really really nice if the animal empathy skill could be used on critters like snakes and spiders and giant bugs. It just seems weird that a druid can tell a gargoyle to behave, but not a snake. And its incredibly frustrating to preach the virtues of all natural creatures, and how you shouldn't step on the spiders, only to have one attack you and be forced to kill it or die yourself. I would love it even more if druids could walk through nature-friendly things like treants or satyrs without incurring their wrath, but that might be too much of an advantage.

Anyway, that's all from me. Fee free to tell me why these won't work now :)
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General Discussion / You may now refer to me as...
« on: May 22, 2010, 02:52:20 pm »
[size=8]ycleption, J.D.[/size]
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CNR Suggestions/Discussion / Brewing
« on: May 06, 2010, 04:38:08 pm »
It would be really nice to have some of the brewing recipes be more difficult to craft. Right now its impossible for characters to advance very high in food crafting using alcohols, and more importantly, there is nothing that has a prestige attached to it, nothing that is the pinnacle of the brewmaster's art. I'd be happy to come up with some specific numbers if that would help, but as is, all the high end alcohols are just too easy to make.
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Trade and Market Hall / Poster in the Vehl Tradehall
« on: February 08, 2010, 09:11:54 pm »
*posted in Vehl, a rather large poster*

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Just for Fun / If only...
« on: December 14, 2009, 12:54:41 pm »

General Discussion / Computer woes
« on: November 10, 2009, 06:07:51 pm »
So, some of you may have noticed I haven't been in game lately... I've been having some computer problems, and without going into the gory details, it looked like the problem would be easily fixable, but now I have to send it out for repairs, so I won't be around for a while longer. I'll still try to be around on the forums when I can get to the library, but it might be a while before I'm back in game.
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Rumour Has It / At the Four Stars Inn
« on: September 05, 2009, 10:38:52 pm »
*A white clad elf wanders into the Four Stars in Haven, and speaks to the barkeeper*

Um, hello, I just came from the big Silkwood cave, and um, magic seems to be working oddly down there... just like happened in the red light caves a little while back, and um, I just was wondering if you could warn anybody who setting out from here... I'm going to send a few letters to people I know who can fix this, I'm sure it'll be taken care of before too long, but I just thought people should know...

*she then takes a table and proceeds to write out a few letters. A similar conversation later takes place at the Wild Surge inn in Hlint*
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Poetic License / Wax Seal Tutorial
« on: July 20, 2009, 09:05:37 pm »
So, I've had a number of people asking me how I made the wax seals that I've used... so to that end, I'm putting a tutorial here (I'm putting it in this forum, in the hope that it inspires some creative efforts).

This tutorial is designed for The GIMP a free program, but those who have photoshop or something similar should be able to follow along. My hope is that someone who is unfamiliar with the program, or image editing, should be able to follow along. People familiar with the program may notice that there are other ways to do the steps I've shown, I haven't tried to exhaustively list every way you can accomplish something.

I make no claims that this is the only, or even the best way to so this (I'd be surprised if it was)- its just the way I've stumbled across, through a lot of trial and error. Also, my illustrations are a bit rough - they're to illustrate the steps, not to be perfect examples of final work.

If you have suggestions, insight, alternate methods, or if anything I say just doesn't make sense, please post below.

Okay, first, go to file->new
Pick a canvas size that's comfortably larger than you want the final image to be, and big enough that you have some room to work - I recommend using a square canvas, just because its easier to work in.
For this tutorial, I'm using a 300x300 pixel canvas.

Choose the ellipse select tool, either from the main interface, or by going to tools->selection tools->ellipse select on the menu in the window that your image is in. At the bottom left of your screen, there is a little display where it shows the horizontal and vertical pixel count where your mouse is on the image. I strongly reccomend making use of this, so that you make a perfect circle centered in your canvas - it makes life easier in the long run. Some of you might just choose to eyeball it, or even try for a little bit of assymetry to make it interesting, but for this tutorial, we start at the mouse point 50, 50, and stretch the circle to the mouse point 250, 250.

Either press cntl+I, or go to the Select menu and choose "invert selection." This will allow us to draw only outside of the circle.

Next, choose the paintbrush tool, either from picture in the main interface, or from the Tools menu. To choose a brush, click on the little illustration of the brush, or press shift+cntrl+B. In order to get the right effect, I use a brush with a medium hardness, about 25 pixels in diameter. If you don't see a brush like that, click "new brush" in the brush selection window, and move the little slider bars around until you find something you like - you may want to make a handful of brushes while you're at it, since the default brushes are all on the small side.
Once you've got a brush you like, choose the color you want by clicking on the upper of the two colored rectangles, which will bring up a dialog called "foreground color." You can play around until you've found a color you like. This tutorial uses red, since that seems to be the most common color for wax seals.
Now, just take the brush and run it around the edge - this is one step where having an unsteady hand is an advantage!
If you don't like what you have, just undo it and try again. Cntrl-z to undo steps, and cnrtl-y to redo them are your friend, and unless you are far more accomplished at image editing than I am, you'll probably find yourself using them quite a bit.

Notice I've made a number of color variations to try^

Once you have a border that you like, go to the "select" menu and choose "border." This will bring up a dialog box. Choose somewhere around 3-5 pixels.
Select a somewhat lighter shade than your original, and use the brush to fill in your border selection.
Hit Cntrl-A or go the the "select" menu and choose "select all."

Go to the foreground color selection dialogue, and select the first shade that you used, or something similar. I'm using a slightly darker shade here. Choose the "bucket fill" tool, and click inside the white circle.
It doesn't look like much now, but this is the base for our seal - now we're going to tweak it to make it look more real.
First, go to Filters->Blur->Gaussian Blur. You can adjust the amount of blurring, by adjusting the blur radius - I'm using a radius of 5 for both horizontal and vertical blur here.

Next, we're going to be using layers. Layers are the way that we can stack multiple images on top of each other, to achieve different effect. To view or manipulate layers, you can go to the layer menu, the dialogue menu-> layers, or simply hit cntrl+L (another shortcut you'll probably want to know and use a lot). From the layer dialog box, click the little icon at the bottom of the box that has two images. This should duplicate your layer.

Make sure that you have the copy layer (the top one) highlighted, so that what you are doing will only affect that layer.

Go to the "filters" menu -> distort -> emboss.
Play around with the slider bars. It really just takes some trial and error (the scientific among us may decide ahead of time the light angle and choose an appropriate azimuth, the rest of us just rotate the image later). for now, just pick some something that has the appropriate amount "of 3-Dness" and click ok.

Go back to the Layer dialogue, and click the drop down menu, and choose "overlay"

If it doesn't look quite the way you wanted (and most likely it won't), you have several options. You can undo a few steps, adjust the way you did the embossing, and see how it looks. You can use the gaussian blur filter on the embossed layer to give it a softer look, or you can adjust the lightness and contrast under the color menu. This is by far the trickiest part of the process, don't be discouraged if it takes several tries to get it to look the way you want.

If you haven't done so already, save your image. I recommend you save it in the GIMP's native format, which is .xcf, because that way you can come back later and manipulate the layers, if you want to.

Take a deep breath, get some coffee, and rest your eyes a minute.
When you come back, take a fresh look at your seal, and decide whether you want any more changes.

Now, for the design part, you either make a new layer in the image you've been working in, or you can start a new image and then transfer it later - just a matter of personal preference, but for this tutorial, we'll be working in a new image. You can draw it yourself, find something from google images or wikimedia commons, use clip art from a package, it doesn't really matter - just so long as its a relatively simple design.
We'll be working with a very simple plus sign - notice the narrow, very soft brush used will result in a very "slopey" texture in the final image, with little "plateau" to it.

Choose the "select by color" selection tool, and click on the design part of the area. If you have some variation in tone, you may have to fiddle with the threshhold slider bar, or after you've selected once, change the mode to "add to selection" and grab again, until you have the whole design part selected.

Now, go to filters-> light and shadow -> drop shadow.
You'll probably want a shadow that's fairly small, maybe x and y equal to 3, and a radius blur of 5. Play around and see what works (if you are trying to create a wax seal where the design is depressed, rather than as a relief, your results may be better skipping this step - try both with and without, or doing this step after you do step #15). Note that this creates a new layer.

Note that this shows what the selection should look like after step 12^

From the layer dialogue, right click on the "drop shadow" layer and choose merge down. Go back to the "select by color" tool, bump the threshold way up, check the "feather edges," box and click on your design. You should get a selection that includes part of the shadow. Again, this step is optional, and you may prefer the results you get by keeping the selection identical to the one you used in the previous step.

Now, we're going to use the same emboss tool we used earlier. Again, you may need to fiddle with the filter a few times before getting results that you like. Make sure that the light direction is consistent with your shadow.

Once you're satisfied with the texture of the embossing, go to the layer menu, and choose Transparency -> color to alpha. (you may need to click "add alpha channel" before you're able to do this. Make sure the color selected is white, then click ok.

It probably looks like a grey checkerboard, with your design in shades of grey, at this point.

If you need to, rotate your wax seal image using the rotate tool, and drag the image around until the light direction matches your design. Create a new layer in the wax seal image, by using cntl+shift+n and make sure the fill type is set to "transparency."

If you need to resize the design so that it fits in the center of the wax, go to image -> scale image, and change the size so that it fits. Choose the "clone" tool. Hold down cntrl, and click on a convenient place on the design - you can see below, I chose the top center. (if for whatever reason you have more than one layer in your design at this point, make sure the "sample merged" box is checked in the tool options.) You can see that my cursor is precisely at pixel 150, so I know it's centered horizontally, and just use the brush to paint the image into the wax seal image (I'm using a giant brush so I just have to click once).

Make any adjustments to lightness/contrast, or decrease the opacity a bit if need be. Feel free to use our old friend Gaussian Blur if it looks too hard and edgy. Once you are happy, save the image, and then choose "save as" and save another copy as a .jpg, so you can post it to the web.

Good luck!

Rumour Has It / A letter is sent..
« on: January 01, 2009, 11:52:01 pm »
*A letter is sent is sent to the mayors, guard lcaptains, or other leaders of major towns around Mistone, with the exception of Hempstead. A charcoal drawing of a figure in armor is attached, both a standing and sitting depiction*

To those entrusted with the safety of your town,

The figure depicted here is a known dark elf. He disguises himself with a helmet, and carries a sword, with which he is said to be quite proficient. He wears blue and white armor. He has deluded many of those known as "adventurers" into the laughable notion that he is somehow benign, and different from other dark elves. I urge you, for the sake of your women and children, do not be merciful should you see the one depicted her enter your town.

~Someone who cares.
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General Discussion / Just a note
« on: August 04, 2008, 06:58:43 pm »
Some of you may have noticed I haven't been in-game much lately, (some of you may even have noticed my absence before I did ;)), just wanted to let people know I haven't and won't be going anywhere... I've just been very busy lately with law school related work. The semester hasn't even started yet, and already I'm remembering with fondness how much free time I had when I worked a 9-5 job. I'm probably moving soon, as well, so taking care of that may eat up time. So, I may be out of game (or on sporadically) for a while longer, but I'm still reading the forums, lurking on IRC, and checking my PMs, so if you need to contact me or my characters, you'll be able to. I just need some time to get things done without the addicting distraction of Layo. I'll start being more active before long, I promise :)
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Rumour Has It / Along the docks of Fort of Kings
« on: April 27, 2008, 10:20:24 pm »
"Old Man Cubbins says it's a dragon breathing smoke"

           "...Well I heard it's a million billion bats, and not a cloud at all"

"You're both wrong, it's actually..."

While the Erilynian children argued about matter they all knew was unknowable, one boy was quiet. Finally, he spoke up. "You're all wrong. I know, I heard some people talking at the inn." The group of urchins silenced, turning to hear what their normally quiet compatriot could offer. "There was an elf, she was dressed in a shiny black robe, and she was meeting with some people who were wearing swords and armor. I hid under the table by them and listened... she said she and some others people went there, she saw what was in the mountains, she saw what was making the cloud. And I know she was telling the truth, 'cuz she gave the people with armor maps she drew to the Mountains of Madness"

The other children gave him expectant looks. "Well?" One demanded, "What did she say she saw?

The boy flushed with the excitement of being the center of attention, a position he obviously was not used to. "She said she saw..." he paused dramatically "She said she saw Milara." The boy smiled at their looks of incredulity, and continued, trying to get it all out before somebody interrupted  him. "And there was some woman named Say-Leen or something, she said it was somebody's sister, a really important person. And a grey floaty thing that she didn't know what it was. She said there was a portal there, that some people let Lumbers out of... and that's what's making the cloud, the Lumbers live in a shadow place and the cloud is the shadow that got leaked out." He finished, trying to sound as though he actually knew what that meant and that he was actually sure that's what the elf said.

One of the girls snorted. "You're probably just making all of this up... I like Brandon's idea better."

The young Erilynian smiled, for the best surprise was to come. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a piece of vellum, a veritable treasure from these urchins' perspective, and carefully unrolled it.  "I... I think they knew I was there the whole time. One of the guys with a sword asked the elf to draw an extra map, and then after she had finished he reached down and gave it to me." He held the map  up where they could see it, but not get their fingers on his prize.

"What do the words on it say?" Another boy asked.

"How should I know? I can't read any more than you can," the boy replied.

They began arguing about whether the map was real or not, and continued until the sun went down and it was too dark to try and make out anything on the map, and the boy carefully rolled it up with enough care to rival any curator or archivist, and tucked it away....
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Just for Fun / More law school fun...
« on: March 28, 2008, 03:17:18 am »
Now, I know some of you are jealous of all the jolly fun times I have in lawschool, (especially after I conclusively proved that law school is not boring) and wish that they could take a break from Layo to read casebooks and study the finer points of choice of laws doctrine... so I decided to share a bit of the fun with you folks. Here you go:


[a few paragraphs taken out here]

Plaintiff suffered injury on January 4, 1999 and filed suit in this Court on September 15, 2000. However, Plaintiff did not amend his Complaint to add Defendant Phillips until March 28, 2001, indisputably more than two-years after the date of his alleged injury. Plaintiff now responds that he timely sued Phillips, contending that the three-year federal statute for maritime personal injuries applies to his action.

Before proceeding further, the Court notes that this case involves two extremely likable lawyers, who have together delivered some of the most amateurish pleadings ever to cross the hallowed causeway into Galveston, an effort which leads the Court to surmise but one plausible explanation. Both attorneys have obviously entered into a secret pact — complete with hats, handshakes and cryptic words — to draft their pleadings entirely in crayon on the back sides of gravy-stained paper place mats, in the hope that the Court would be so charmed by their child-like efforts that their utter dearth of legal authorities in their briefing would go unnoticed. Whatever actually occurred, the Court is now faced with the daunting task of deciphering their submissions.

With Big Chief tablet readied, thick black pencil in hand, and a devil-may-care laugh in the face of death, life on the razor's edge sense of exhilaration, the Court begins.

Summary judgment is appropriate if no genuine issue of material fact exists and the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. When a motion for summary judgment is made, the nonmoving party must set forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial. Therefore, when a defendant moves for summary judgment based upon an affirmative defense to the plaintiff's claim, the plaintiff must bear the burden of producing some evidence to create a fact issue some element of defendant's asserted affirmative defense.

Defendant begins the descent into Alice's Wonderland by submitting a Motion that relies upon only one legal authority. The Motion cites a Fifth Circuit case which stands for the whopping proposition that a federal court sitting in Texas applies the Texas statutes of limitations to certain state and federal law claims. That is all well and good — the Court is quite fond of the Erie doctrine; indeed there is talk of little else around both the Canal and this Court's water cooler. Defendant, however, does not even cite to Erie, but to a mere successor case, and further fails to even begin to analyze why the Court should approach the shores of Erie.

Finally, Defendant does not even provide a cite to its desired Texas limitation statute. A more bumbling approach is difficult to conceive — but wait folks. There's More!

Defendant submitted a Reply brief, on June 11, 2001, after the Court had already drafted, but not finalized, this Order. In a regretful effort to be thorough, the Court reviewed this submission. It too fails to cite to either the Texas statute of limitations or any Fifth Circuit cases discussing maritime law liability for Plaintiff's claims versus Phillips.

Plaintiff responds to this deft, yet minimalist analytical wizardry with an equally gossamer wisp of an argument, although Plaintiff does at least cite the federal limitations provision applicable to maritime tort claims. Naturally, Plaintiff also neglects to provide any analysis whatsoever of why his claim versus Defendant Phillips is a maritime action. Instead, Plaintiff "cites" to a single case from the Fourth Circuit.

Plaintiff's citation, however, points to a nonexistent Volume "1886" of the Federal Reporter Third Edition and neglects to provide a pinpoint citation for what, after being located, turned out to be a forty-page decision. Ultimately, to the Court's dismay after reviewing the opinion, it stands simply for the bombshell proposition that torts committed on navigable waters (in this case an alleged defamation committed by the controversial G. Gordon Liddy aboard a cruise ship at sea) require the application of general maritime rather than state tort law. See Wells v. Liddy, 186 F.3d 505, 524 (4th Cir. 1999) (What the ..)?!

The Court cannot even begin to comprehend why this case was selected for reference. It is almost as if Plaintiff's counsel chose the opinion by throwing long range darts at the Federal Reporter (remarkably enough hitting a nonexistent volume!). And though the Court often gives great heed to dicta from courts as far flung as those of Manitoba, it finds this case unpersuasive. There is nothing in Plaintiff's cited case about ingress or egress between a vessel and a dock, although counsel must have been thinking that Mr. Liddy must have had both ingress and egress from the cruise ship at some docking facility, before uttering his fateful words.

Further, as noted above, Plaintiff has submitted a Supplemental Opposition to Defendant's Motion. This Supplement is longer than Plaintiff's purported Response, cites more cases, several constituting binding authority from either the Fifth Circuit or the Supreme Court, and actually includes attachments which purport to be evidence. However, this is all that can be said positively for Plaintiff's Supplement, which does nothing to explain why, on the facts of this case, Plaintiff has an admiralty claim against Phillips (which probably makes some sense because Plaintiff doesn't).

Plaintiff seems to rely on the fact that he has pled Rule 9(h) and stated an admiralty claim versus the vessel and his employer to demonstrate that maritime law applies to Phillips. This bootstrapping argument does not work; Plaintiff must properly invoke admiralty law versus each Defendant discretely. Despite the continued shortcomings of Plaintiff's supplemental submission, the Court commends Plaintiff for his vastly improved choice of crayon — Brick Red is much easier on the eyes than Goldenrod, and stands out much better amidst the mustard splotched about Plaintiff's briefing. But at the end of the day, even if you put a calico dress on it and call it Florence, a pig is still a pig.

Now, alas, the Court must return to grownup land. As vaguely alluded to by the parties, the issue in this case turns upon which law — state or maritime — applies to each of Plaintiff's potential claims versus Defendant Phillips. And despite Plaintiff's and Defendant's joint, heroic efforts to obscure it, the answer to this question is readily ascertained.

The Fifth Circuit has held that "absent a maritime status between the parties, a dock owner's duty to crew members of a vessel using thedock is defined by the application of state law, not maritime law. Specifically, maritime law does not impose a duty on the dock owner to provide a means of safe ingress or egress. Therefore, because maritime law does not create a duty on the part of Defendant Phillips vis-a-vis Plaintiff, any claim Plaintiff does have versus Phillips must necessarily arise under state law. Take heed and be suitably awed, oh boys and girls — the Court was able to state the issue and its resolution in one paragraph ... despite dozens of pages of gibberish from the parties to the contrary!

The Court, therefore ... applies the Texas statute of limitations. Texas has adopted a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury cases. Plaintiff failed to file his action versus Defendant Phillips within that two-year time frame. Plaintiff has offered no justification, such as the discovery rule or other similar tolling doctrines, for this failure. Accordingly, Plaintiff's claims versus Defendant Phillips were not timely filed and are barred. Defendant
Phillips' Motion for Summary Judgment is GRANTED and Plaintiff's state law claims against Defendant Phillips are hereby DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE. A Final Judgment reflecting such will be entered in due course.


After this remarkably long walk on a short legal pier, having received no useful guidance whatever from either party, the Court has endeavored, primarily based upon its affection for both counsel, but also out of its own sense of morbid curiosity, to resolve what it perceived to be the legal issue presented. Despite the waste of perfectly good crayon seen in both parties' briefing (and the inexplicable odor of wet dog emanating from such) the Court believes it has satisfactorily resolved this matter. Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment is GRANTED.

At this juncture, Plaintiff retains, albeit seemingly to his befuddlement and/or consternation, a maritime law cause of action versus his alleged Jones Act employer, Defendant Unity Marine Corporation, Inc. However, it is well known around these parts that Unity Marine's lawyer is equally likable and has been writing crisply in ink since the second grade. Some old-timers even spin yarns of an ability to type. The Court cannot speak to the veracity of such loose talk, but out of caution, the Court suggests that Plaintiff's lovable counsel had best upgrade to a nice shiny No. 2 pencil or at least sharpen what's left of the stubs of his crayons for what remains of this heart-stopping, spine-tingling action.

In either case, the Court cautions Plaintiff's counsel not to run with a sharpened writing utensil in hand — he could put his eye out.


DONE this 26th day of June, 2001, at Galveston, Texas.

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General Discussion / Reminder to druids
« on: March 23, 2008, 03:44:05 pm »
Hey, just a friendly reminder to all druids out there that we have a our own forum to discuss druidy things. It's a bit lonely there at the moment, but I know there are some of you out there who haven't joined (or haven't made your presence known). In theory, druids should communicate all kinds of things with each other... we have perhaps the most far-reaching communication network on Layonara. In practice however, that doesn't happen quite as much. So I encourage all players of druids to join the forum in they haven't done so, and to use the forum more actively once they have joined.

How to join:

Click "Private messages" or any of the options under "my acount/user control panel"

On the left of the screen, towards the bottom, scroll down and click on "Group memberships"

Find the "Druids" group, and on the right of the screen, click the join group button, and then scroll down to the bottom of the list, and click join group.
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CNR Suggestions/Discussion / Cloak and boot suggestions
« on: January 24, 2008, 04:29:39 pm »
Some suggested tailoring recipes for things already in game as droppable items (as I know new items are problematic due to the palette size). Currently neither footwear nor cloaks (with the exception of exceptional ones) are comparable to even mid-level dropped items: The best craftable boots are the boots of the swift (which have limited usefulness, especially for those who already have the dodge feat), and there are no higher level craftable cloaks. I don't think other crafts the disparity between dropped and crafted items is so great. I realize that it could make tailoring too powerful a craft by sheer variety of useful types of items, to address this, I have included ingredients from other crafts in the recipes.

Boots of Striding +1
1 thread
1 cloth pattern
2 hill hound leathers
1 enchanted diamond - endurance.
4 essence of power
(perhaps make the +2 version the exceptional result?)

Silver Slippers
1 thread
1 cloth pattern
2 bolts queen silk cloth
5 silver ingots
1 visual effect holy
1 prayer beads

Blue Suede Shoes
1 thread
1 cloth pattern
2 dire tiger leather
10 sapphire dusts
2 essence of grace
1 potion of grace
2 essence charm
1 potion of eagle's splendor

Cloak of protection +1
1 thread
1 cloth pattern
2 brown bear leathers
1 scroll of shield
1 silk padding

Cloak of protection +2
1 thread
1 cloth pattern
2 grizzly bear leathers
2 scrolls of shield
1 dark silk padding

Cloak of Resistance +1|Cloak of resistance +1 - Alternate
1 thread|1 thread
1 cloth pattern   |1 cloth pattern
2 jaguar leather|2 dire wolf leather
2 gems of resistance|2 gems of resistance
3 nuggets of iron|3 nuggets of platinum
[x dust of emerald]
Cloak of resistance +2   |Cloak of resistance +2 - Alternate
1 thread|1 thread
1 cloth pattern|         1 cloth pattern
2 dire wolf leather|      2 dire tier leather
4 gems of resistance|      4 gems of resistance
3 nuggets platinum|      3 nuggets cobalt
     |[x dust of emerald]
Somewhere in-between the two may work as well. *shrug*

So... that's my stab at trying to make some item recipes. Feel free to rip apart now :-)
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Just for Fun / For anyone who thinks law school is boring.
« on: October 05, 2007, 05:19:00 pm »
Many people think law school is dry and boring. This case was from my textbook, and I think shows otherwise. (I edited it down a bit). I think the judge who wrote it harbored a secret desire to be on the Layonara writing team, although he didn't know it.

This case presents the ordinary man-that problem child of the law-in a most bizarre setting. As a lowly chauffeur in defendant's employ he became in a trice the protagonist in a breach-bating drama with a denouement almost tragic. It appears that a man, whose identity it would be indelicate to divulge was feloniously relieved of his portable goods by two nondescript highwaymen in an alley near 26th Street and Third Avenue, Manhattan; they induced him to relinquish his possessions by a strong argument ad hominem couched in the convincing cant of the criminal and pressed at the point of a most persuasive pistol. Laden with their loot, but not thereby impeded, they took an abrupt departure and he, shuffling off the coil of that discretion which enmeshed him in the alley, quickly gave chase through 26th Street toward 2d Avenue, whither they were resorting 'with expedition swift as thought’ for most obvious reasons. Somewhere on that thoroughfare of escape they indulged the stratagem of separation ostensibly to disconcert their pursuer and allay the ardor of his pursuit. He then centered on for capture the man with the pistol whom he saw board defendant's taxicab, which quickly veered south toward 25th Street on 2d Avenue where he saw the chauffeur jump out while the cab, still in motion, continued toward 24th Street; after the chauffeur relieved himself of the cumbersome burden of his fare the latter also is said to have similarly departed from the cab before it reached 24th Street.

The chauffeur's story is substantially the same except that he states that his uninvited guest boarded the cab at 25th Street while it was at a standstill waiting for a less colorful fare; that his 'passenger’ immediately advised him 'to stand not upon the order of his going but to go at once’ and added finality to his command by an appropriate gesture with a pistol addressed to his sacroiliac. The chauffeur in reluctant acquiescence proceeded about fifteen feet, when his hair, like unto the quills of the fretful porcupine, was made to stand on end by the hue and cry of the man despoiled accompanied by a clamourous concourse of the law-abiding which paced him as he ran; the concatenation of 'stop thief’, to which the patter of persistent feet did maddingly beat time, rang in his ears as the pursuing posse all the while gained on the receding cab with its quarry therein contained. The hold-up man sensing his insecurity suggested to the chauffeur that in the event there was the slightest lapse in obedience to his curt command that he, the chauffeur, would suffer the loss of his brains, a prospect as horrible to an humble chauffeur as it undoubtedly would be to one of the intelligentsia.


The chauffeur apprehensive of certain dissolution from either Scylla, the pursuers, or Charybdis, the pursued, quickly threw his car out of first speed in which he was proceeding, pulled on the emergency, jammed on his brakes and, although he thinks the motor was still running, swung open the door to his left and jumped out of his car. The plaintiff-mother and her two infant children were there injured by the cab which, at the time, appeared to be also minus its passenger who, it appears, was apprehended in the cellar of a local hospital where he was pointed out to a police officer by a remnant of the posse, hereinbefore mentioned. He did not appear at the trial.


Returning to our chauffeur. If the philosophic Horatio and the martial companions of his watch were 'distilled almost to jelly with the act of fear’ when they beheld 'in the dead vast and middle of the night’ the disembodied spirit of Hamlet's father stalk majestically by 'with a countenance more in sorrow than in anger’ was not the chauffeur, though unacquainted with the example of these eminent men-at-arms, more amply justified in his fearsome reactions when he was more palpably confronted by a thing of flesh and blood bearing in its hand an engine of destruction which depended for its lethal purpose upon the quiver of a hair? When Macbeth was cross-examined by Macduff as to any reason he could advance for his sudden despatch of Duncan's grooms he said in plausible answer 'Who can be wise, amazed, temperate and furious, loyal and neutral, in a moment? No man’. Macbeth did not by a 'tricksy word’ thereby stand justified as he criminally created the emergency from which he sought escape by indulgence in added felonies to divert suspicion to the innocent.


The chauffeur-the ordinary man in this case-acted in a split second in a most harrowing experience. To call him negligent would be to brand him coward; the court does not do so in spite of what those swaggering heroes, 'whose valor plucks dead lions by the beard’, may bluster to the contrary. The court is loathe to see the plaintiffs go without recovery even though their damages were slight, but cannot hold the defendant liable upon the facts adduced at the trial. Motions, upon which decision was reserved, to dismiss the complaint are granted with exceptions to plaintiffs. Judgment for defendant against plaintiffs dismissing their complaint upon the merits. Ten days' stay and thirty days to make a case.
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