Driving Most everyone takes it


Most everyone takes it for granted, except for Geologists, who probably take it for granite. For years, fear, mainly, has stunted my natural development and growth. Only in the last couple of years have I actually obtained my driving license. And only since I have arrived in sunny California have I actually driven without driving instructors, on my own.
Today marked another milestone. While yesterday was significant in that I drove a fair distance (Santa Ana to Placentia) in a futile quest for a job, I drove that solely on surface roads. Today, I drove to the Laguna Hills Mall to meet an acquaintance of Jean’s who might have a lead on a job with her kiosk/store, THINGS REMEMBERED. I drove there and back, by using the 405 and 5 Freeways.
I will pause here a second for those of you who know me well to recover from fainting, falling down and other reactions. Yes, I, Paul, have driven on freeways and lived to tell the tale. I topped off at a blistering 70 MPH at one point.
As for the job, the lady passed on my application and such up to her supervisor, so we will see what happens. The acquaintance, Bev, made a good point in saying that its oftentimes easier to get a job once you have one. Perhaps this will serve as a stepping stone to a better and more fiscally renumerating job. Right now, though, make no mistake, I want a job, period. One step at a time. The hurdle, the monkey-on-my-back, has to be overcome, expunged.

One of things being discussed

One of things being discussed around a bit on the blog circuit is superheroes, jedis and, well, sex and romance.
You will have to highlight the text below to read this, because it does contain spoiler information.

In Spiderman, Peter Parker in the end, decides not to return Mary Jane’s love, even though it is clear that he has feelings for her. Its almost a strange superhero celibacy that Arref and a couple of others have commented on thanks to a few articles floating about. In Attack of the Clones, its implied Jedi cannot have such relations, either…even if Anakin winds up breaking this sort of code to spend time with Amidala.
However, according to an article on imdb.com, Lucas has a slightly more nuanced view:
Celebrity News: 16th May 2002
Jedis Can Have Sex, Says Lucas
…Lucas says it’s romance, rather than hanky panky, which is banned by the Jedi code. He says, “Jedi Knights aren’t celibate – the thing that is forbidden is attachments – and possessive relationships.”
So, Jedi’s can sleep around, but can’t call the girl (or guy!) the next day?

Blogging (and webspace maintainence too)

Blogging (and webspace maintainence too) is so slow under this connection. :sigh:
Still working on the job thing. Went for an interview today that turned out to be mediated by a Temp agency. Not what I expected but maybe it will work out.
Been working on my own conjectural version of the old hoary Abyss power. I am borrowing lots (mainly from the Queens of Amber game) but I am putting my own spin on it. Not sure if anyone would actually ever qualify in SB to use it…but this keeps within the canonical rules of the game.


It has many names…the Abyss, the Great Pit, The Hole…the edge of the Abyss is sometimes referred to as the “Rim.” It is the perfect moat as mentioned above. The Abyss prevents physical exit from the Courts…even the shadows of Ways cannot cross the Abyss. It may not be a power in the sense of the Logrus and Pattern, but it does, in a sense, represent true entropy.
>From the Strange Bedfellows FAQ, on the Abyss

Introduction to the Abyss

Perhaps there is power there. What follows is a conjectural exploration of what an Abyss power, in the Strange Bedfellows universe, might look like, and how it would work.
First of all, if there is power to be gained in the Abyss, it could not be from a source of sentience or potential sentience, like Pattern or Logrus. The Abyss, as mentioned on the cosmology page of SB, is really a conduit, a passage from the Amber Multiverse to the even greater void beyond, which holds all of the multiverses. So its not a force of destruction or entropy in an active sense.
Also, too, the likelihood of someone actually developing these powers would be rare to say the least. Said person would have to travel to the deep depths of the Pit, but manage to stay alive in the degrading conditions down there, and manage to not leave the Amber Universe altogether. Oh, and yes, the Abyssal user would somehow have to manage to get back out of the Abyss again.

Requirements for Abyss:

Advanced Shapeshifting, or Basic Shapeshifting with significant points in Lessiman Pahth techniques
Endurance greater than Amber Rank. I’d personally say a minimum of 20. The Abyss is a BAD place.
A long term (months? years?) immersion into the Abyss to allow time for the corrupting power to manifest itself within the user.

Abyss in Action

By definition, anyone who has Abyssal powers must have spent a significant amount of time in the zone of the Abyss, and has thus become immune to its effects. As noted above, without a high amount of shapeshifting and endurance, this should not be possible–either the users mind and body would degrade to useless in a short period of time following escape, or they would not have survived the experience in the first place.
However, this Abyssal Taint then, even stable within an Initate, will be relatively easy to spot by anyone using Mage Sight, Logrus Lens and similar techniques. The catch is that the sorcerer looking at the Initiate will see the taint, but will very unlikely know what it is without further investigation. The Abyss is simply so rare, that its taint, however distinctive, would be undefinable. Abyssal powers are like an unshielded nuclear reactor, and the fingerprints of their use is fairly easy to spot, once someone knows to look for it.

Abyssal Powers

Abyssal Taint
Points: 10
The basic level of Abyss, this is the minimum investment in the power. The Initiate has been to, and somehow survived the Abyss. Said Initiate can now handle Abyssal energies, and, if they somehow return to the Abyss, have no personal danger of further damage.
Abyssal Defense
Points: 15
Requires: Abyssal Taint
This power enables the Abyssal Initiate to infuse his/her body with Abyssal energy, such that the initiate is resistant to attacks by pattern, logrus, and trump. Spells that utilize such energies are much reduced in efficacy, though they may have some effect. The initiate must concentrate for a minute or so to activate this power, but after activation the effect lingers for 10-40 minutes, during which time the initiate is protected. Note that it is impossible to contact the initiate with trump while he/she is infused with Abyssal energy. Another facet of this power is that while imbued the Initiates touch becomes harmful to non-abyssal creatures. Wounds inflicted by the Initiate while in such a state do not heal normally, and often fester, and become infected.This latter effect is somewhat less severe to high endurance and real beings.
Abyssal Sight
Points: 5
Requires: Abyssal Taint;Abyssal Defense
This power enables the initiate to percieve the presence of greater energies, in much the way that Logrus or Pattern Lens work.
Abyssal Shadowwalk
Points: 5
Requires: Abyssal Taint;Abyssal Defense
This power enables the Abyssal Initiate to move through shadow, at much the same slow rate that someone bearing the Broken Pattern Imprint does. Note that this power damages the boundaries between shadows on a temporary basis, such that anyone with Pattern or Logrus can easily track the passage of an Abyssal Initiate. Also note that the Abyssal Initiate will not necessarily walk through the most offensive shadows as a Broken Pattern Initiate might, but the tendency will be to use those, as they will provide a somewhat easier path.
Further powers and uses for Abyssal power beyond these almost certainly exist…