Overnight News Heading into Tuesday December 15th 2020
(News Yet to be Traded 8:00 PM - 4:00 AM EST) It is up to you to judge the accuracy and veracity of the below before trading. I take no responsibility for the accuracy of the information in this thread.
TSLA Tesla To See $1.1B In 'Deferred Software Revenue' In 2021, Munster Estimates
TSLA Elon Musk's SpaceX Seeks To Double Valuation At $92B In New Funding Round: Report
TSEM Tower Semiconductor and OPIX Announce the Successful Development of a World Class iToF Technology Platform for 3D Imaging and Face Recognition Applications
AAPL Apple Supplier's iPhone Factory Suffers $7M In Damages During Violent Worker Protests
EAF GrafTech Announces Upsizing and Pricing of Secondary Offering of Common Stock by Existing Stockholders
ATA.U Americas Technology Acquisition CORP. Announces Pricing of $100 M IPO
UBER Uber Fined $59M In California Over Refusal To Share Information On Sexual Assaults
BNR Burning Rock Announces an Exclusive in-Licensing of a Risk Stratification Test for Early Stage Lung-Cancer Patients from Oncocyte in China
BCDA ($4.48) BioCardia, Inc. Announces $8.5 Million Registered Direct Offering Priced At-The-Market Under Nasdaq Rules [Revised]
UBER DASH LYFT GRUB Uber and DoorDash are hiking food delivery and rideshare prices for Californians to pay for new driver benefits
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Collection of thoughts about my experience as a Prius Dweller
Thought I would finally join this subreddit and give a run down of my experiences. Last year, I bought a 2018 Prius with the intent of using it to go on road trips and live in it -- mostly because I have been trapped in the middle of frickin' nowhere my whole life and have never had a true adventure. I have never seen a mountain in-person prior to these trips. I also have a very comfortable IT job that easily facilitates me living in a car and working remotely without issues and with a lot of free time. I went on two separate trips so far. The first one was about 2.5 months long and the second one was about 3.5 months long. I have traveled from Seattle, WA to Key West, Florida and put over 20,000 miles on the car in the process. My first trip was comprised of South Dakota (Badlands, Black Hills), Yellowstone, Idaho (Coeur d'alene), Oregon (Forests, Crater Lake, Portland, beaches), Nor Cal (Redwood forests, beaches), Washington (Beaches, Seattle, Olympic National Park), and Montana(Glacier National Park). And for my second trip, I went to Louisiana(New Orleans), Florida(where I spent most of the time and explored nearly everything), up the coast to Charleston, SC, and into the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains(Gatlinburg, Asheville). Everything was amazing. I don't know if I have a favorite, but the beauty of Glacier National Park particularly strikes me. I also thoroughly enjoyed swimming in the crystal clear springs throughout Florida. My setup is not particularly elaborate, but I didn't spare much of an expense: - Tinted windows. - Front and rear dashcams with batteries for when the car is off. - Custom fit sun shades for all windows (Weathertech). - Weathertech floor liners. - A basic cooler. - Redundant IT setup so I don't get fired. (2 laptops, 3 chargers, a car charger, 2 hotspots) - A 4" thick full sized foam mattress pad and a sleeping bag, couple of blankets, couple of pillows. - Suitcase full of clothes, towels.- Bag with misc supplies (Laundry, food, trash bags, medicine, wet wipes). Wet wipes are great for cleaning yourself when you don't have access to a shower for some reason. - A Black Card membership to Planet Fitness (for showering mostly). It also makes a good excuse if you ever decide to sleep in a Planet Fitness parking lot (not my first choice). - Rain guards so that I can roll the windows down in bad weather. And that is basically all I needed. I know people have much more elaborate DIY setups, but much of that I never found necessary or was interested in. I also ended up buying a USB fan that I never used because if I ever really needed heat regulation I would just use the AC. One thing that I wish I had thought of beforehand is to get a Prius with a sunroof. It would have been nice to be able to stare up into the sky while I try to sleep, or to open it up and let some air in. One thing I might consider in the future is a signal booster for my hotspots. These can be pricey, but worth it if your job depends on a reliable connection. Although I think I can get by without one by using apps that help you pinpoint the location of cell towers and by mooching off of hotel wifi access. I took out a few credit cards prior to purchasing the car and supplies in order to score a bunch of bonus travel points (I had saved up most of the cost of the car prior to buying it). I used the Plastiq service in order to use car payments towards the qualifying payments required for the credit card bonuses. The fee they charged was definitely worth it for the points I accrued. So I set out on the road with a boat load of free points I had thought I would need for hotels here and there. It's a good idea if you like to go to them from time to time. During my first trip I went to hotels twice a week (mostly to work). I eventually realized that I could work entirely out of my car without issues and without much discomfort, and during my second trip I only booked a hotel a couple times. As I write this, I still have around half of my points... It's been the time of my life. I would do it full time if I didn't have other obligations (my cat, mostly, who waited patiently at home). As a result of these trips, I have decided to move to the west coast permanently, which means I have another trip coming up soon. On my next trip I plan on going through Colorado, maybe stop at the Grand Canyon, and make my way through southern/central California. Now I'll just focus on what it was like living in the Prius and what my preferences are when I do it rather than the trips themselves. If anyone has any questions about anything, feel free to ask. I've only been explicitly shoed away twice, and one time a security guard caught my attention but allowed me to continue what I was doing. The first time I was shoed away, I was at a casino parking lot. I have stayed at many casino parking lots, and most of them never bothered me, but this one in particular had saw me put up my sun shields (from the outside) and was determined to kick me out. Since then, I started putting my sun shields on only from within the car so that people are less likely to notice, and I think it has helped. The second time is when I was staying in Key West, Florida. Key West thinks they have a problem with people living in their car, so the locals don't take kindly to people camping in their cars and are extra vigilant about it. No one actually explicitly shoed me away, but someone dinged my car with a bell and yelled "No overnight parking" generally for the entire parking lot, which was enough to scare me away. They may not have known I was sleeping in my car. And the time when the security guard approached me, I was sleeping in a large vacant lot two nights in a row. The first night went fine, and the second night alerted them more that something was going on and caused them to approach me. But, they thought I was homeless and destitute or something, and they let me stay there because they pitied me, but they told me to leave first thing in the morning. My location of choice? Mid-sized hotel parking lots. I did this almost exclusively on my second trip. Holiday Inns, Courtyard by Marriots, etc. No one who worked at any hotel ever bothered me, tow away zone signs be damned. If I park in the right location, I get free wifi access, which is great for work. That was my primary motivation. Sometimes people staying at the hotel would catch on to someone being inside of the car and gossip about it such that I could hear them, but no one ever really bothered me. Other than hotels, free camp sites are nice. (freecampsites.net) Sometimes you can get really lucky and find an abandoned camp site with a full bathroom and shower and electricity next to a scenic lake or something like that. Other places I stayed at that I would recommend: Walmart parking lots (in good neighborhoods), 24 hour gym parking lots, Cracker Barrels, Cabelas, the aforementioned casino parking lots. Side streets. I am not really a fan of side streets, but I think it depends on the neighborhood. It's a bit paradoxical because these might be locations where it's actually legal to park and stay overnight, but the people who live in the house you park next to can get suspicious of you. I would much rather deal with someone who works at a hotel or as a security guard and is underpaid than with a curious and possibly grumpy homeowner. The first night I ever slept in my car, I stopped at a small town in South Dakota where I stood out like a sore thumb, and every time I would try to find a parking spot on a side street, someone would come out of their house and approach me. They would confuse me with someone they knew, or they would just look at me suspiciously. Everyone in a small town in the middle of nowhere knows everyone, and they know that you do not belong there. I ended up sleeping in a car dealership out of desperation and with someone probably watching me the entire time. Rest stops. I never use a rest stop. They do not seem safe to me, because everyone knows that there are sleeping travelers there, and thus predators can go to these places looking for people to victimize. It defeats the purpose of stealth. The safest thing to me is to draw minimum suspicion that someone is even trying to sleep in their car. But as I never used them, I don't have any real world experience. The stories of people being attacked at them was enough to keep me away from them. PEE JUGS: An art form. I don't know how female dwellers live without pee jugs. It must be difficult. I imagine getting up to pee a bunch would break stealth. It's bad enough that you're more vulnerable as a female to begin with. But as a male dweller, you will be presented with a variety of options. Gatorade bottles might seem like a good idea, being that they have a wide top and can store a decent amount. And while you may be able to pee in a Gatorade bottle here and there, you may underestimate how much you have to pee and how much space you actually have. Really, you want at least a gallon jug, and you want something with a nice tight screw cap and probably a firm handle. Large bottles of tea also work well. The last thing you want is to spill pee. Take this sage advice and do not learn the hard way. But also be sure to take advantage of the majestic pee jug if you are privileged to do so. And never go to bed when you have to poo and think you can hold it in. It sucks. You rarely ever do this when you live in a house and you may not appreciate how uncomfortable and how bad of an idea this is until you try it. No, I did not poo the bed, for the record. Anyway, that about wraps up everything I have to say for now. I will answer any questions. I love Prius Dwelling. It's been the time of my life. I want to continue doing it on and off for the rest of my life. These kinds of long trips are simply not financially possible to do if you stay at hotels unless you are loaded. I should probably write a tl;dr. Edit: Added Rain Guards to my setup list.
This season deserves a special award for inspiring flat-line boredom, with each storyline offering at least one awful person dripping poison over anyone kind or thoughtful. Natalie: Mike wants for me to be the bad one. What is this farce? Mike: I’m sorry, I can’t hear you over the I DON’T LOVE YOU. When we last saw Mike, Natalie was spring cleaning his self-esteem the Marie Kondo way, except she torched everything that sparked joy to make room for more misery. Now he’s outside wondering why science hasn’t granted him the ability to beam onto an airplane to spare him the insult of standing in a Ukraine alleyway, waiting for his maybe-fiancée to flounce down the stairs and demand an apology for…something. Natalie, Our Lady of 1,000 Bluffs, somehow finds the strength and courage to amble down the stairs and sit in the backseat of an Uber for a melancholy airport adventure. Natalie: Mike, everything is good. You must calm down and stop being so dramatic. This is gaslight like in movies. Now I must cure you of hysteria with vibrators and Valium. Mike: I mean, do we have to keep filming? What if I jump out while the car is moving? Can that be your final scene? Natalie thinks that in a perfect world Mike would apologize just for sport and then sweep her off her feet, which should be easy since they’re never on the ground. After several awkward airport moments Mike tells Natalie that he’ll call her later, but he needs time for detox and an exorcism. Natalie remains confused that Mike thought she loved him, based on the 30,000 times she said “I love you,” when he should have been able to read her rapidly changing narrative and anticipate ongoing rewrites. She approaches Mike to pretend she doesn’t know what’s going on, but Mike isn’t falling for that shit. He asks for a goodbye hug, she says no, and Mike bounces. Natalie sulks off to find her people in the Land of Bad Decisions, where Tania is waiting for her upon a throne of skulls. Back home and no longer engaged, Mike is making pancakes for himself and Uncle Beau. Beau comes rushing in the door to ask Mike how the trip was, and to announce that he lost $25 at the casino last night and needs to borrow from the bank of Mike. So um…Mike’s entire life is apparently like this. Can Mike and Syngin get a beer together please? Blake: I have friends. Jasmin: I don’t care if Blake’s friends like me. I also don’t care if Blake likes me. Blake is getting ready for his friend Everett’s birthday party, while Jasmin warms up her excuses for dodging it. Jasmin knows this party was the plan from the start, but decides against being a good introvert who tells him to go without her and to just enjoy himself. Instead, she attempts to smash Blake’s social butterfly in favor of a sober conversation about yoga and tea. She asks Blake if they can skip the pre-party dinner and just eat together, which Blake agrees to with the caveat that he will continue to express his dismay. Blake orders a drink, and Jasmin reminds him that you can’t talk to Jesus when you’re drunk. Jasmin latches on to Blake drinking as her excuse for avoiding phase 2 of the evening’s pseudo-social interaction. She says she’s going to call her sister instead and pretend to be mad at him while being secretly relieved to enjoy blissful time away from his flock. What remains of Blake’s sense of humor about this situation gets lost trying to escape his hair. Jasmin tells the cameras that it’s selfish to ask her to go to a party, and totally forgets the part where it’s selfish to derail his plans because that plan is something she doesn’t want to do. Blake says that he’s tired of explaining her behavior to his friends. Neither one of these two is capable of having an adult argument, and are likely on a relationship subreddit as I type, posting a totally balanced report of their latest immature interaction. Jasmin arrives at Janette’s clinical apartment, and declares that Blake refuses to do anything that interests her, because “everything is always about Blake.” She says that Finnish folks are calmer, while Janette tells her that she needs to keep trying to adapt, and by “keep trying” she means try at all. Tania: Okay guys, I get it, I’m like, the villain here. Did anyone else just feel a weird rush of glee? That must be Mercury in douchebag and Mars going direct into asshole. Totally grounded and focused financial wizard Fucking Tania has put her trusty pink shirt in time-out, for a responsible and goal-oriented phone call to an astrologer with a predictable funny name. But not before Syngin fetches precise room temperature water for her to swallow with her lizard tongue to maintain the skin suit that presents some approximation of humanity. Syngin calls his mother to gather the data necessary for someone to cold-read Tania over Skype, and his mom clarifies that he was born at “twenty to three.” Resident expert Tania mansplains that this means 2:40, and this is apparently how she will feel superior today. “We are energy beings,” Tania tanias. “And I was born at a certain time for a certain reason, and that reason is to vampire every shred of joy from Syngin’s twinkling soul.” “Marie Kondo,” Natalia pipes in. “Clean out all of the joy.” Astrologist Daizy October picked that name on purpose, and tells Tania something about “blueprints of the soul” which makes the first shelf of the New Age section of the bookstore start vibrating. She declares that Sagittarius is the archetype of travel, which is what one would say to someone who can afford Costa Rica but not a shed of one’s own. Daizy: Now Mars in Scorpio, and Tania is in existence, which means there’s going to be some fighting, and sex is important. Syngin, blink if you need help. Syngin: Oh yes. Fucking Tania: Is that blood in the water? No wonder I’m hungry. Syngin: By “oh yes” I meant yes, I need help. Ms. October says that their souls bring them together, which would make sense if Tania had one, and asks if they’re soulmates. Syngin says their connection is so vivid he feels like he’s met her before, and then he died to escape her. Tania looks drunk on hurting Syngin, and pushes it further by insisting her first love was her soulmate, and he still is, even though she hasn’t been with that dude for like 8 years or so, and the restraining order keeps getting renewed over and over again. Syngin points out that they met in a star-crossed way, foolishly failing to note that hurting him is Tania’s entire objective. “I feel like I don’t know what to say, because anything I say will hurt you, which is why I can’t stop laughing. I’m fine,” Tania reports. Then Syngin tells the cameras he needs a break to restore his essence, and Tania hovers in the doorway, eagerly anticipating the chance to harvest from him all over again. So to recap: Tania, who trusts in the universe, does not trust that the universe gifted her Syngin, but instead believes that eventually she’ll be regifted the tattered remains of her original bottom, who has likely moved on to other astral alignments, and a thousand mile away zip code. Yep, this is pretty on brand for Tania. Angela: I’m not the bad guy, I’m a tax payer! Michael: I have a shopping list. Angela’s chest is newly covered in an ancient pirate treasure map, guiding strangers to the booty in her bra. Her plan is to storm the American embassy and assert her tax payer status as a means of pushing this K-1 process forward. After ambling through the gates and harassing multiple members of security, she emerges and bellows to Michael. She says they wouldn’t let her into the embassy since she doesn’t have an appointment, and strangely, they don’t consider a white lady demanding a K-1 an emergency. Maybe she needed to explain that she’s working with the alternative reality where she can carry a child, and they wouldn’t give her Botox in her uterus. The next day they go to Michael’s uncle’s house for dinner, but first they have to stop and pick up a microwave for Michael’s mother. Angela is worried that the material expectations increase with every dinner, and says that the gifts can’t keep growing in value. “Please Angela. We need to present a love and respect microwave,” Michael persuades. The man working at the store states a price far more than the microwave is worth, and then Michael says he should price it less because they’re going to get something else, too. This is his way of surprising Angela with a required gift for his uncle. She tells the shopkeeper that she’s got 15,000 stored under her best titty, and he should take it and call it good now that she’s his African sister. Okay then. The guy takes it, and she walks away with a microwave and kettle. Angela is happy to visit his family, especially Michael’s mother, whom she loves so much. As the most junior, or newest, wife, Angela is expected to help cook and serve as a sign of humility. She awkwardly works on plantains while Michael insists he’s not expecting much in terms of domesticity once they are stateside, but he will expect her to cook, in addition to being the only breadwinner and caretaker for a bushel basket of people. Even the producer laughs, because the only thing Angela will be cooking in Georgia is Michael if he maintains that ridiculous idea. Michael’s family starts asking about their wedding plans, and Angela explains that the K-1 is her family’s only opportunity to see her get hitched. They are eager for Michael to have a child with Angela’s ashy uterus, and his whole family starts weighing in on the matter, which nudges Angela right to the edge. She somehow keeps her mouth shut and remains respectful, even after Uncle says that if it doesn’t work Michael should move on to the next baby basket, which is a regional woman unlikely to arrive with household appliances. Are they trying to get on Maury? If you listen closely you can hear Angela’s internal kettle whistling away, and her microwave chiming ding-ding-ding. Emily: You don’t have to be a Debbie Downer! Betsy: I will be one ASAP! Emily has freed Sasha from the clutches of Indiana in favor of her fake hometown Portland, where she takes him to Washington Park’s Rose Garden to show him how shitty west coast cities are, amirite Trump? Emily says that it’s going to be expensive to go from two-for-one Indiana to Portland’s most expensive suburb, confirming my suspicion that she’s from Lake Oswego, where Real Housewives ferment until their first divorce and rehab stint. This is good news for Sasha, who is very likely to find a wealth of personal training clients and his fourth wife there. Emily says they should get married ASAP, and Sasha agrees without knowing what ASAP means. “After two weddings, third not so much,” Sasha shrugs. “Fourth will be court house. Fifth, maybe commitment ceremony.” Emily heads back to scenic South Bend to save hundreds of dollars on a wedding dress. She says she’s leaning towards the Oregon coast as a wedding location, which makes sense if you don’t know that every venue from Brookings to Astoria is booked ages in advance, but she wouldn’t be the first or last person to turn that AirBnB into Plan A and Plan B. Emily’s sister is there to remind her that every idea she has about her impending nuptials is wrong, which is not fair to Emily, who knows every lace dress is better with piercing wind and sand. The salesperson hides in the dressing room from their endless passive-aggressive sparring, before coming out to place a veil and headpiece on Emily and make Betsy cry. Robert: I’m terrible. Why are you always complaining? Anny: I would like to go out with Robin or Mike now please. Hey guys, you know how 90DF always has one trashy, delusional family that believes the fiancé is there to steal their no-money? Well, this round it’s fucking Robert, father of five who appears to be largely free from the burdens of child support...or who perhaps opts for tax-free employment for those very reasons. He’s dragging Anny and the other person who is nice to her (his sister Robin) to a restaurant to meet up with his equally-awful brother Kenny. Robin says that Bryson loves Anny and that she really likes her too, while Kenny gets busy disrespecting and humiliating her before she can work a “hello” out of her mouth. Kenny wants to know how she’ll be in the future, and Anny suspects he doesn’t know what year it is, so she reminds him that they live in the present, and what matters is how they treat each other now. In response, Kenny says he’s not sure if he’s going to their wedding at all, carrying on the 9DF tradition of families that fail to notice it isn’t all about them. Now fully defensive and uneasy, Anny asks if Kenny is cheap too, and Robin assures Anny that she wouldn’t be a fan of a thrift store shopping spree, either. This gets in the way of Robert and Kenny’s plan to disrespect women in public places, so Kenny asks if she always complains a lot. Anny corrects him that her issue is that Robert lies, and told her he had three kids instead of five, in addition to making endless empty promises of clothing, an apartment, and any expression of affection whatsoever. Kenny says that he has seven kids, which isn’t normally something you play as clap-back, but okay Kenny. Yes, seven is greater than five. Anny has had it with them and their apparent plan to overpopulate the planet, and leaves and says that she feels alone. “That’s not the way you talk when you love somebody,” she says, speaking truth. “Well, my fiancé only loves me on Thursdays. Do you want to get a beer with me and Syngin?” Mike is there for her. Juliana: In this story, my family appears to be the villains, and this makes me sad. Michael: I’m rich but my tux doesn’t fit. On the day of the wedding, Max and CeCe are in conference about the gravity of the forthcoming nuptials, in between mugs of stiff black coffee and plates of almond biscotti. CeCe: I’m feeling moderately uneasy, due to rigid societal expectations of appropriate age disparity. Surely if this were the era of Ibsen’s “A Doll’s House” this wouldn’t even muddy my mind, but given the unfortunate modern conviction that a second spouse serves as an accessory and not a person, we have some educating to do. Max: This seems a prudent way to address the offensive tongue of your friend Dakota, who has lived a sheltered life free from parental relationship development and sexual exploration. For now, I’ll simply relish the opportunity to wax poetic on their enduring love once mother has concluded her oratory. CeCe: I have some concerns about you being assigned this important role, while I am relegated to the background. Is this sibling rivalry? Not very becoming of me, I’m sure. Max: I validate your feelings of envy, but as the elder sibling I am allotted a generous portion of gloating which will carry all the way into the late stages of my adulthood. CeCe: Is that when you argue with your wife about 401K distribution while I go to Burning Man in a modified school bus? Max: Do you bite your thumb at me? CeCe: I do bite my thumb at you, sir! Meanwhile, Juliana’s friend Pao is there (no, not that Pao, who is only friends with Juan) along with her friend Cousy, who Juliana describes as like a second mom. Cousy lives in Milan, where Juliana met her during a modeling gig, and she sprung for the ticket to ease Juliana’s loneliness on her special day. In Michael’s wedding prep, we learn that he bought two tuxedos, and decides to wear the one that fits. Juliana wishes her mother could see her in her wedding dress, or was capable of acknowledging her existence when she’s not buying a car for her sister. A gorgeous clear tent is set up to welcome wedding guests, all but two of which are friends or family of Michael. CeCe is on deck to tell Juliana she looks so pretty, while Max gives Michael a pep talk about toxic masculinity and exploring romantic relationships with an open heart. Cousy then hands her phone to Juliana to share a video she made of messages from Juliana’s friends who want to wish her well. Juliana keeps waiting for a relative to appear in this video, but it doesn’t happen, because apparently Juliana’s family has plenty of narcissists. Or maybe they’re hiding in the wings until the next episode? Either way, the family doesn’t so much as text her, and in the face of this intentional cruelty Juliana starts crying and struggles to stop, thawing the thickest layer of our cold black hearts. Next time, Jasmin says she doesn’t want to work or smile or breathe, Sasha promises to love his third wife until he doesn’t, Juliana braces to be married by her future husband’s ex-wife, while Syngin finds a friend to mouth “help me” to when Tania is sleeping safely in her coffin. Thank you Patreon supporters! Follow the link in my bio to bathe in my toxic pool!
Hi I'm Seath, This is my story that has started from 1992 and still continues to this day. My story starts in 92 our family had just been relocated to the Mohave Desert from my dad being transferred by his job to work across the Colorado river in Laughlin NV . We rented a house on the AZ side of the river due to it being cheaper then the NV side. From what I do remember we rented from a Native american who went by his CB radio name Dakota I do not remember his real name. CB radio was the 90s Voice chat for people living out in the middle of nowhere. Anyways when we were moving in we could see the river at the end of the road of the street we lived on, he warned us the river is very dangerous at night and if you hear anything unusual just go inside and lock the door. My mother asked like what party drunk people? He shook his head no, He told us don't take it the wrong way but alot of people die at the river at night thinking they see people downing or screaming for help and nothing is there and the fast pace of the river takes them away and do not have a chance to escape its rapids. If you hear someone calling for help just call the police do not investigate , it may not be what it seems. He just turned and looked at the river then at the ground and let out a sigh, then he said there are thing that walk this earth that cannot be explained and sometimes its best to leave them be. I just stood there being only 9 not knowing what he was talking about and my dad just said ok. We lived in the house for about a year nothing out of the ordinary had happened work, school, church dinner repeat until one Sunday night after church. My dad and I were sitting in the garage with the door open just watching the river and the stars we basically had no light pollution and there was supposed to be a meteor shower, it was about 9:30pm my dad told me to get inside and get ready for bed for school tomorrow. As was about to stand up we heard what sounded like crying coming from the direction of the river and asking for help but it didnt sound right at all. It was like trying to talk with out your tongue and like you had water in your throat, we looked back and forth trying to pinpoint where it was coming from. Then you could see a woman walking out of the river trees / brush. As she walked it sent chills down your spine it was staggered but like it was walking on 2 feet for the first time. We just watched it walk across the field to the road that connected to our house, my dad stood up and took a step forward and the woman stopped instantly. She tilted her head and slowly looked at us, she was pale covered in mud, brush and water. Her head kept tilting unnatural it looked like it should have snapped but it didn't, we both froze her eyes were a reflective silver as her head bobbed from the tilting it reflected like animal eyes would. After what felt like an hour even though it was only a few seconds it fell face forward with force you heard the body hit the ground "SMACK" and dust flew up. At this point I stood up trying to see where it was, then it just screamed not just from the throat but from the depth of its chest high and low pitches roared and echoed across the desert. My dad pushed me back into the garage getting ready to close it then it popped back up and it was on all fours still with its head tilted and start running at us at full speed. My dad shoved me in and slammed the door shut and locked the inside bolts to prevent it from opening, soon as that latch lock "BAM" it hit the garage. Screaming and scratching continuously at the door yelling "HELP" and "LET ME IN" then it stopped our hearts pounding then you could hear it sniffing the crack of where the door meets the driveway and see its shadow moving back and forth saying "I HAVE YOUR SCENT" then the shadow was moving to where the front door is, at this point my Mom open the garage door that connect to the inside of the house looking at us like WTF are you making all this noise. She saw us on the floor scared to death and instantly my dad bolted up and ran past her to the front door to check it, the front of our house was on the corner of the street covered my large windows easily could be broken. The door was already locked and he looked out the windows nothing was there it was bright from the street lights and no sign of the monster. We told my mother what happened she really didn't question it, she heard the screams and banging. The next morning Dakota came out we told him happened, walked the property not saying anything stopped at the garage door looked at the dents and scratch marks then he turned and looked at field and river. He looked over the field and river walking back n forth from our property but not taking one step further toward the river or the field, he panned looking up and down the dirt then stopped he pointed at the dirt said "There". We all looked down and it was track marks coming from the field to our street there were only tracks on the dirt and nothing on the street it must have cleared the street when it rammed our garage door. We went to go look at the tracks Dakota put his hand up and shook his head "don't touch it" he said it would be wise for us to move because it would be back and he needs to cleanse the house and recommended we do so ourselves. He knew a friend in the next city further away and would talk to him to see what he had available to be quick as possible. My parents didn't question it while Dakota took care of that my dad took a new job in the city further away as a police photographer. I would like to say things were better after the move but they were not, this house was haunted to put it in simple terms. We lived in the house for 2 years, not a lot happened at once small things at first the tv would turn on by its self, after we would leave the curtains would all be pulled shut making the house extremely dark. The house had a fence around the entire property including the house so no one could just walk up to the house my mother had to locks on all the gate, we would constantly see dark shadows walking by the window or crunching from leaves. The shower would constantly turn on the plug would be put it trying to flood the bathroom, towel racks would be pulled out from the wall, and foot steps walking up and down the hall like on hardwood floor even though everything was carpet except the kitchen. But the worst of all was this wooden shed outside it was small just big enough for tools and the ground dirt was so hard it was like concrete no shelves windows nothing bare. This shed constantly sounded like someone coming in and out slamming the door neighbors would call the police and complain, and the officers would joke at my dad and say what is your house haunted or something so we drilled latch and bolted and locked it shut. We just got use to it and were just waiting for our lease to be up and then we were going to move back to Vegas at the end of the year. So its Christmas eve the last year of our lease, we were getting ready for midnight mass we were at the front door getting our coats when all the lights started going in and out like in a thunderstorm messing with the power but it was a clear night just freezing about 15F. My parents kept our jeep outside the fence under the street light it was just easier then opening the garage door and the gates every time to leave, something caught my mothers attention to the jeep even with the lights flickering. There was something crouched behind the jeep with its hands on the hood looking around the corner of the vehicle, she told me as soon as its eyes reflected silver she knew what it was from what we told She said under her breath "What the hell is that?" as I looked out and saw it we made eye contact it stood up from behind the jeep like it was waiting for me to see it. As it stood even though it was under the street light it was like it was absorbing the light making more shadows, but you could tell it was the body of a woman/ish the body was a woman with matted fur across its chest pale arms legs inverted legs and hooved feet and a decaying deear skull on her face no antlers just matted hair and pulled flesh. At this moment we were looking at the monster again all the doors in the house slammed shut and a deep demonic gritted voiced yelled get out as this moment before we could react to the house the monster was walking to the front door as everything around was getting darker with each step. My mom grabbed my sister and yelled at my dad to follow, we went back into my sisters room where it had a phone and no windows, we called the police and just said someone was trying to break in because who would believe hey a monster is trying to break in and the house is yelling at us. Since my dad already worked with the police a few of the officers had spare keys to feed the animals when we left town to visit relatives and such. This next part is from there perspective 4 officers showed up they unlocked the gates and doors, 2 in the house and 2 walking the perimeter. inside all the light were out and occasional flicker making a pop sound blow out the bulb, they said it felt like they were constantly being watched and heard foot steps leading to the garage but found nothing. The two officers were outside and it said it was eerily quite the frozen ground crunching with each step when one of the officers pointed at one of our trees a dark shadow was in the tree and they when they shinned there flash light at it all they saw was reflective eyes. Before they could say anything it jumped out of the tree and bolted for the shed ripping the door open and slamming it shut. from the inside you could hear "What the hell" *Boom heavy running then SLAM* The officer called for the 2 inside you could hear the police yelling at the shed we have you surrounded come out, each time they called out for them to come out the wall banged louder each time you could hear the wood cracking and echoing in the cold air. When the officers yelled we are coming in we are armed, come out with your hands up, then one last "BANG" then silence they opened the door nothing was there just the smell of rot like something died in there. it was empty no lights nowhere to go it is just a small shed and frozen earth. Clearly they were spooked but it unexplained I remember one of the officers saying this is some X-files shit right here, It was just filed as wild life disturbance not a break in. For the rest of the lease we just stayed at a hotel and when the time came we just took what we needed and left the rest. This is the house and it is for sale again, for some reason before I decided to write this I looked it up and its been for sell a long time. what still scary its bright as hell and the rooms are still very dark and the towel racks are still ripped out After we moved back to Vegas my mother was obsessed with the paranormal she wrote letters called priests to anyone who would giver her the time of day to trying to find a way to protect us, we got more crosses, holy water, rosary's on all door handles dream catchers in every bedroom and she got some blessed salt , and salt rocks put on all entrances and windows, she also put curtains on all the mirrors reading info it could be used as portal. A bit over kill you might say but the truth of the matter after seeing that twice i was game and it became normal, and nothing happened for years until 2003 7 years later. In this time my mothers health was greatly fading and could not take the heat with constant migraines that followed, so we moved to Douglas county much cooler and close to the mountains. At this point Im working my sister stayed in Vegas starting her life, I could have done the same but with what my mother was going through I didn't want to leave her to deal with this. As time went on she began walking around the house at all hours of the night arguing with shadows in the corner and yelling leave me alone. I couldn't see it but with her health dropping the paranormal activity started up again as it is was her spirit and will was keeping us safe and now with her health failing the locks were broken and they walked in the door. I never saw to much because I worked graveyard and slept in the daytime and nothing very strange happened in the morning would see shadows or something in the corner of your eye but that's about it. After some time my mother passed from a Arianism this was her 2nd one she survived the first one, after the funeral and all the family left the activity exploded. one morning I was sleeping after I have gotten off work my dad and I worked apposing schedules and rarely saw one another, I was sleeping and I heard my closet door I tried to open get up I couldn't move I was locked down I couldn't even open my eyes. I could hear foot step walking up to my bed but they were long steps not short like moving left to right as if it was creeping up. I felt to pressures put at the foot of my bed first right at my feet then I could feel it creep up on my bed walking over me. The air turned humid it was thick it smelled like a drain that has not been cleaned and the bacteria has built up in the drain I work in food my whole life and we have drain socks to catch all the debrie from going down and when those don't get changed out they smell awful and that's what it smelled like or what my brain connected to. As is crawled up to my face I still could not move i was stuck and I;am thinking this is it I'am going to be eaten Im screwed, with each pull forward I could feel what im guessing is its hair on my face and warm/cold moist feeling up to my face then it spoke. The same voice I have heard before years ago back in that garage gurgles no tongue " I Found You" my heart sank I was scared before now and deathly scared if I could piss myself I probably would have. I pulled deep with in myself and ripped myself up flying out of bed my arms and legs going in every direction hitting my computer chair that was next to my bed and kicking my desk. Nothing was in front of my or my bed I looked around the rooms and my closet door was still open but just a crack directed at my bed as if it has been watching me fling around. I left the apartment when to the hardware store got some chain and locked my closed shut and a board and nailed it across the door I didn't care about my deposit or wanting to experience that again. after that nothing happened again not even shadows like poof it was gone all of it but constantly felt like something was watching me from somewhere and I couldn't explain it, the only place I felt safe was work and I worked at a casino lights and hundreds of people I worked as much over time took other people shifts or sat in the bars after work I didn't want to go home. Eventually our lease was up and we moved into a new apt closer to our jobs and across town and a 2nd story facing the street with lots of light. Once again nothing happened the apt was nicely lit the sun came in the windows every morning and the streetlight kept it lit after dark it made me happy and safe. Then its about another year and half goes by this is the last few months I will be living with my dad we never see each other and just dont talk that much after my mother passes I felt it was time to move on because nothing happens to him just me. So he went out of town for a month vacation and I was going to pack that month and move out when he got back. I took a vacation as well because you will laugh at this time World of Warcraft Burning crusade was launching and my friends wanted me to start a Blood elf and play a paladin for the guild since I already had experience playing it on alliance. I did we pulled all dayer because i worked grave yard daytime was my night time. I was tired it was about 11pm I havent at night in years now so I didnt even think about anything or my haunting past I hit the pillow i was out. I woke up hearing someone in my kitchen I look at the clock its 1am I put my head down thinking my dad was just making a late snack that he did alot, Then I snap up he is out of town I press my ear up to my door I hear foot steps outside my door away to where the kitchen is. I could hear clicking "tick tick tick tick tick" Im like what the hell is that? Then it dawns on me, it is the gas stove and the fire has not been lit. I hear a door open close to me and close. Im confused the only door near my left side where the sound came from was the Linen closet. I bolt out into the kitchen all the gas is on no flame i turn it all off turn on the stove fan open the front door to get air flowing again the I heard a rustle in the linen closet and almost a giggle like someone laughing. I turned and looked at it, at this point i wasent afraid I didnt care what was in there I put my hand on the door handle and ripped the door open nothing just cramped racks of towels no one could hide there not even a child or a cat. I let it air out then I left went to walmart and bought new door handles and locked all the doors shut if they were not in use and moved my computer desk in front of my closet door so it could not be opened. I never used it i mostly worked and just my winter coat and thing for the move. now its about 4 am Im still tired but feel safe enough to sleep I tapped the gas knobs, I lay down and with little effort I fall back asleep. The again I wake up to a "BOOM" and shaking I bolt up and everything is pitch black expect a emergency light blinking on and off from the outside I look around everything is dark, then I stop I could hear breathing behind me I already knew what it was the sound was the same. My bed is right along the wall on the window so I could open and get air when needed so I wouldn't have to blast the air conditioner. I turn my eyes first I could see a shadow in my window, unlike my first encounter I was not frozen I was incontroll I slowly turned my head and it was there the Deer Woman she was standing in the window seal two hooved feet on the wood one arm holding on the frame. The window was still open from the gas and I wanted to make sure the apt was vented. At that moment we locked eyes she tilted her head again as she did before it felt like a eternity this time i could clearly see everything. But this time she changed again the first time walking corpse, 2nd time decaying deer monster, 3rd time humid and moist. Now the forth time still a Deer skull but it was clean white endless darkness in the eye sockets no skull or eyes inside just darkness a void of all life and light, her hair was no longer matter just long and black/brown fur covers her chest like a fur shawl from the 50s and it was black as the eye sockets and the same fur hooved legs. What felt like a life time she reached at my face Im assuming to grab me, I flung out of bed slammed against the wall trying to turn the light on and nothing everything is our except the flashing yellow emergency lights from the apartments outside. I looked back at the bed she was still there and started walking forward the bed creaked and cracked from the weight the sound of wood to this day still scares the hell out of me. I tried to open the door but i forgot i locked it and my brain couldn't comprehend that i locked it earlier and just had to unlock it was pure flight mode. I just grabbed my computer chair next to me closed my eyes and flung it at the window and crash class broke I open my eyes chair on the bed broken glass and it was gone. I walk up to the window and nothing is there not even foot prints or dented wood a flashlight hits my eyes blinding me i raise my hand to block the beam it was security asking if I was alight we had a earth quake and a gas pipe blew whole towns out. He said did the quake break your window I just said yeah said not a issue they would come back later and get it fix just put up card board and tape it up might be awhile I just noded. The window was fixed my dad came home I didnt bring it up and shortly I moved out to start my life, and for years I moved around but did not see the Deer Woman again for a very long time. I know the story is long so we will do a speed round, got in contact with a shaman back in the Mohave desert where it all started they I was not alot to give details but got a spirit cleanse ceremony and smudging. He told me this would only keep the smaller spirits away but what has attached itself to you will be much harder I cannot help you will need to strengthen your will and spirit like your mother and that power will protect you. In way I knew he was right when my mother reached out and did all those things years ago was over kill but nothing happened. after years of working transfers moving across the nations from Pennsylvanian to Hawaii I land back in Douglas county go figure right. Im married with children we just moved into town to be closer to my wifes parents, staying with them untill apt was ready to move into. So at this point like my mother I have rosary's on door hands blessed salt in the windows, and we have our birth stones blessed and put into the corners of entrances and house corners. I dont cover mirrors but I still lock all closet doors to this day. its now 2016 and while we are sleeping with the window open her parents dont have AC i hear rustling outside the window I didnt think much of it because it was covered in black berry bushes and rose bushes whom ever is going to try and break in is going to have a bad day. I look out side the window and the deer woman is looking in at me, I quickly shook my wife she was pissed to say none the lest i pointed at the window and motioned "shhh" she looked and quickly got wide eye I grabbed her with my left hand preventing her from moving. The Deer Woman looked at me then at the seal of the window as if it was looking at the salt the looked back and forth of the birth stones it looked at my wife then bolted from the window could hear cloping sounds like a horse on the pavement fading away. after it was gone the street lights seemed bright again and the sounds of the crickets came back, my wife was shaking me like WTF was that, I told her thats my cryptid stalker i told you about. She always listened to me and always thought I was going over board but never questioned it she knew I wasent lying. This was her first paranormal encounter and now the window has been opened for her she see shadow people, things moving now she dosent like it want the window closed again but now knows the world just got more scary and is more helpful blessing and protecting the house now. It has visited my wife when I was working late one night she went to let the dogs outside the backyard she opened the door and the dogs quickly nope'd and walked behind her refusing to go out. She was confused and then it dawned on her there was no noise, no bugs, wind, the sounds of cars going to the freeway like she was in a bubble the noises dogs next door were quiet and they never where. She started to look over the backyard she saw nothing then that's when she spotted it, there was a shadow in our neighbors yard under his apple tree. It was the same skull she saw in our window just watching her from the next yard over then it just took a step back and told me it just fell into the shadows like it was water and disappeared and then all the sounds came back. Its now 2020 we live by the mountain side there is no development behind us just empty land, I dont sleep at night to this day still work graveyard. I when I take the dogs out between 1am and 4am he mountains are watching you can hear giggling, screaming, laughing from the hills there is nothing out there Ive taken my dogs up there many times there no way a car can get up there or let alone drunk teens no cans no campires tracks foots prints nothing. My dogs hate going up there so i dont do it, every once and awhile I can feel her watching catch a shadow watching me from the hill standing in rocks a shadow darken then the darkness. I know she is not done with me, but I come to realize that I will be followed for life. Its like a standoff right now, I know shes there she knows I know shes real and I don't know whats next. I don't know what the game is, if death was the answer wouldn't she have just got me those 2 times I was sleeping. I feel like will never have the answers and I will have to pass the strength onto my children so they will be safe in life. I have shared this before but in this version is much long and more detailed then I have ever wrote before.
Playing cards have been part of our culture for hundreds of years, so we can expect some great stories surrounding them. One of the most famous stories of all is the legendary tale of the Dead Man's Hand. Gamblers are a rather superstitious lot, and we've all heard people talk about lucky dice and lucky cards. Many hands of playing cards have even acquired their own names, and perhaps none as famous as the Dead Man's Hand: a pair of black aces and a pair of black eights. So what is the story behind this apparently unlucky hand, which could be an omen of death? And which elements of this tale are history, and which are myth? I'll tell you the story, and you can decide. Wild Bill Hickok First let me introduce you to the famous gunman and gambler that is at the center of our story: Wild Bill Hickok (1837-1876). His real name was James Butler Hickok, but when you're a famous gunman in the wild west, "James" doesn't sound quite as impressive, so "Wild Bill" it was. Apparently his long nose and large lips gave rise to the nickname "Duck Bill" in his youth, but the addition of a fierce moustache and a somewhat wild reputation eventually saw this moniker evolve into Wild Bill. Wild Bill's fame was well-deserved, because he was a celebrated veteran of the Civil War, and a respected lawman and gunfighter in the American West. He earned respect through his involvement in multiple shoot-outs, the iron hand by which he ruled the lawlessness of his day, and his skill as a professional gambler. The papers followed him closely, telling stories of his many gun fights and conquests. His exploits were often sensationalized, mixing with fiction with fact. So we'll never know exactly how many men Wild Bill actually gunned down. Some journalists from his time claimed it was over a hundred, but a respected biographer suggests that the truth is closer to half a dozen. The numbers, exploits, and stories were often exaggerated by his contemporaries, and Wild Bill seems to have lent a helping hand to his growing legend by contributing some outlandish reports of his own about his achievements. https://preview.redd.it/nwcg500iaaw41.jpg?width=500&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=c8e90ce1d1dbab4cfa70d2e84ff1f73c85308838 The Death of Wild Bill Let's fast forward to 1876, when Wild Bill is almost 40 years old. By now he has earned a pretty penny from his gambling and from his other feats. But he is no longer quite the crack shot of his younger years, and his health is also starting to decline. Wild Bill joins a wagon train heading for South Dakota, and arrives at the town of Deadwood. There he entertains himself with one of his great loves at the local Nuttal & Mann's Saloon No. 10: Poker. A skilled player, Wild Bill rakes in the money as he has done so often throughout his life. On this occasion, one of the unfortunate losers is drunken buffalo hunter named Jack McCall, whose losses are so big that he needs to rely on Wild Bill's generosity to buy breakfast. McCall might just have considered this gesture as a grave insult, as the events of the next day would show. The next day is August 2, 1876, and Wild Bill again heads to the saloon for some more poker. Only one seat is free at the poker table, and our hero repeatedly but unsuccessfully asks to switch seats with another player, since his preference is for a chair with his back to the wall, giving him a full view of the saloon and its entrance. So it is that Wild Bill is taken by surprise when Jack McCall steps into the saloon, yells "Damn you! Take that!", and shoots him from behind at point-blank. Wild Bill is killed instantly, and falls from his seat, with his cards clutched in his hand: a pair of black Aces and a pair of black Eights. McCall was initially acquitted, but was eventually tried for murder, and convicted and hanged the following year. But the story of Wild Bill's final hand would live on. The poker game being played was a five-card stud, and there's less certainty about the identity of the fifth card, but the other four were clearly described by a witness present at the scene as pairs of black Aces and Eights. And so began the legend of the Dead Man's Hand. https://preview.redd.it/4lq1jfxiaaw41.jpg?width=500&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=6cdb95086b1234c6b96d87b599f0a1b9f3762702 The Dead Man's Hand Was Wild Bill really holding a pair of Aces and a pair of Eights? Some historians question the authenticity of the account. It has been suggested that the association between Wild Bill and this particular hand was only popularized some fifty years later, when a book about Hickok appeared. By then the story was already turning into legend, and the publication of this story certainly helped spread the legend. But it does appear that prior to the 1920s little was said about it. In fact, at one time in the 19th century the story of a Dead Man's Hand was even reported to be connected with a completely different individual, and a completely different hand of cards. Now that we're more than 140 years removed from the original event, it's not likely that we'll ever find out the truth! Regardless of the historicity of Wild Bill's actual hand at the time of his death, there's no doubt that his story has become the stuff of legend. For the last hundred years, a hand with a pair of black aces and a pair of black eights has commonly been called the Dead Man's Hand, and been connected with Wild Bill Hickok's death. This particular hand has become firmly entrenched in popular culture, with many references to it in countless novels, films, and even computer games. Today there is a small casino called Saloon 10 located at the site where Wild Bill was killed. There you'll find a historical exhibit of the Dead Man's Hand, and signs that tell you about the story behind it. Wild Bill may be long dead, but his legend lives on, although in modern poker a pair of Aces and a pair of Eights is actually a decent combination, and is not exactly likely to get you killed! https://preview.redd.it/25dw1iikaaw41.jpg?width=500&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=a295565a5f3907c96518ec16da7d4860cc53db6f The Dead Man's Deck As a special homage to this tale, the folks at Vanishing Inc Magic have produced a special deck of playing cards. It's a limited edition deck geared to collectors, and commemorates the story of Wild Bill and his unfortunate demise. The tuck box has a plain and sober look with muted black and yellowed borders, that makes it appear to be an authentic relic from yesteryear. Be ready for a surprise when taking the cards out of the box, because the entire deck literally has a hole that goes all the way through the very middle of all the cards, for a very fun novelty look. A round metal musket ball is inside the hole, to complete the dramatic effect. The cards look deliberately weathered and worn, while burn marks surround the bullet hole on both sides of each card. This isn't a deck for the squeamish, because there are apparent smears of blood on the black Aces and Eights that constituted the legendary Dead Man's Hand, while blood splatters also adorn several other cards. The card backs are identical, so you can still use this as a regular deck if you wish. These have a one-way design, and careful observers will notice details connected to the tale of Wild Bill, such as references to his initials JBH, as well as to the cards of the Dead Man's Hand. The design of the face cards employs a vintage style, while the artwork of the court cards follows the older French styled look rather than the classical Bicycle look that we're used to today, including the use of indices on all four corners. Two extra cards are included, one with a photo of Wild Bill, and the other telling a short version of his story. The printing of the deck was done by Expert Playing Card Company, so the cards look great and handle smoothly. This is a very original and fun deck that stands out from others in my collection due to the novelty value, and the great story behind it. You could certainly use it for a card trick that has a Wild West story line, and it might especially appeal magicians that do gambling routines. People who have the book Scarne on Card Tricks should check out the trick "Wild Bill Hickock's Hand" (p.298) which is a Henry Christ routine that uses the Dead Man's Hand as the background and plot. Of course you could also use for a game of Poker or for any other card game too. It's also a great conversation piece and collector's item. Just remember to keep your back to the wall! Where to get it?The Dead Man's Deck is availablehere. https://preview.redd.it/xybva6blaaw41.jpg?width=500&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=122b5572da51ceb30850a19fbb28f2c3f3c42969 Author's note: I first published this article at PlayingCardDeckshere.
The Prestige: The prestige is about two stage magicians and their journey from partners to rivals. In this Christopher Nolan masterpiece these two men find themselves at odds following a catalytic tragedy. A usual stage trick of theirs involved Julia, Robert Angier’s (played by Hugh Jackman) wife, being tied and locked up then lowered into a locked glass cage filled with water, which she then would escape from. Starting off all as friends, things were going peachily until Alfred Borden (played by Christian Bale) decided to change up the act and use a different and more difficult knot for the trick. This was against the wishes of Angier but Borden still wanted to go through with it. That night on the stage Julia wasn’t able to get out. In one of the most frustrating scenes I can think of in cinematic history, Borden and Angier (Batman and Wolverine) watch idly by in horror as Cutter (played by Michael Caine, or more famously known as Alfred) is trying to break the glass detaining Julia. Because Borden made the change without Angier knowing beforehand this caused a rivalry that continued to spiral end escalate throughout the years. As competing magicians they continually and tirelessly worked to disclose each other’s new tricks and sabotage their acts. The actions of sabotage eventually lead them to extremes which result in tragic consequences. It starts with tricks such as catching a bullet. Once Angier discovers the trick he sabotages Borden, ultimately leading to Borden losing a finger. The final magic tricks from each involves cloning, prison, and murder? A star studded cast of Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Scarlett Johansson and many more, this is one movie that deserves to be watched by all. Thor Ragnarok: Thor Ragnarok in my opinion is the greatest of all 23 currently released marvel movies. Taika Waititi is a creative genius and was allowed to use those skills in his adaptation for this movie. The aesthetic makeup of this movie is bold, vibrant and quite simply childish, exactly something you would anticipate the inner workings of Taika’s mind to be like. What makes this film different from all the rest is the lightheartedness and quality humor that percolates throughout the entirety of this theatric masterpiece. Snide humor such as Thor and Hulk’s reunion in the arena of Sakar when Thor says “we’re friends from work” to the spectators. This line was a from a Make-A-Wish child who suggested it for the scene when he visited the set. Nearly every scene with Korg is an instant favorite, filled with one-liners made even better by the New Zealand accent. To top Korg off he is played by none other than director Taika Waititi. One thing that I did find irksome however was highlighted when watching “how it should have ended”. In the film Thor is easily incapacitated by a shocking device that is planted on him by Valkyrie. It makes you question how, if the device works so effectively on Thor then why wouldn’t they use it on Hela? The biggest change in this movie from the others, for Thor’s character perspective at least (pre endgame), was when Stan Lee hacked off his luscious locks. It seemed to completely change my image of the character but for the better. Originally, I hated that they would do such a thing. However, I like the new look and once he went back to long hair I found myself almost longing for the short haired version. When people who are against Marvel/ Superhero movies for some reason this is the film to suggest. It isn’t like all the others which cause you to feel almost comatose because the atmosphere, storyline, or whatever is not the same. Instead of responding to the question of “how was the movie” with “it was a typical superhero flick” Thor Ragnarok warrants a better response, a positive response, one that doesn’t group it with all the other superhero movies. The Patriot: Mel Freaking Gibson. This film is a journey and a half of the American Revolutionary war. Here’s the storyline given on IMDB “It is 1776 in colonial South Carolina. Benjamin Martin, a French-Indian war hero who is haunted by his past, now wants nothing more than to live peacefully on his small plantation, and wants no part of a war with the most powerful nation in the world, Great Britain. Meanwhile, his two eldest sons, Gabriel and Thomas, can't wait to enlist in the newly formed "Continental Army." When South Carolina decides to join the rebellion against England, Gabriel immediately signs up to fight...without his father's permission. But when Colonel William Tavington, British dragoon, infamous for his brutal tactics, comes and burns the Martin Plantation to the ground, tragedy strikes. Benjamin quickly finds himself torn between protecting his family and seeking revenge along with being a part of the birth of a new, young, and ambitious nation.” One of the greatest cinematic antagonists Col. William Tavington is the catalyzing factor for all sorts of emotional highs. Being the cause for the deaths of Benjamin Martin’s children at the onset of the movie, you find yourself cringing each time he makes an appearance. If you’re familiar with the Game of Thrones T.V. series then you will understand well when I say he gives the same emotional trauma as King Joffrey did. It’s not only because he killed Eddard Stark but the way he did it that caused you to despise him, among other things, that draws remarkable contrast to the emotional “attachment” you feel towards Colonel Tavington. It doesn’t help that one of the son’s he kills is portrayed by the late Heath Ledger. Two fun facts about Heath Ledger in relation to this film are such: · “He didn’t work for a year because he only got offers for teen heartthrob roles. He was about to quit acting, and return to Australia, when he was cast in the film.” (And thank goodness because he is an incredible actor and we would have missed out on the greatest villain portrayal of all time in the Joker had he not remained in the acting world) · “Heath Ledger said researching the American Revolutionary War for the film answered his question of why Americans “wave their flag so high.” “It’s because they went to hell and back to build their country.” Being an American this film promotes ample feelings of patriotism and pride. Despite the fictional aspects it is always a great addition to any movie when applicable. Something about being reminded that the United States of America is the greatest and most skilled, powerful and dangerous militaristic forces can’t be undersold (some other great movie examples are Lone Survivor, 13 Hours and American Sniper) Warrior: Crying can be defined as: “to utter inarticulate sounds, especially of lamentation, grief, or suffering, usually with tears.” This emotion is not an unusual one to experience when watching your typical rom-com or drama, even a pixar or dreamworks animation can cause the waterworks to start flowing. Maybe there is something wrong with me but I have never been brought to the point of tears while watching a movie. Not when they put down Marley in Marley and Me, nor when Iron Man died at the end of Endgame, not even when Mufasa was killed by Scar in the Lion King (and we all know that that is at least in the top 3 of the saddest cinematic scenes of all time). So, how is it that the closest I got to crying was in a movie whose storyline is: “Two brothers face the fight of a lifetime - and the wreckage of their broken family - within the brutal, high-stakes world of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighting in Lionsgate's action/drama, WARRIOR. A former Marine, haunted by a tragic past, Tommy Riordan returns to his hometown of Pittsburgh and enlists his father, a recovered alcoholic and his former coach, to train him for an MMA tournament awarding the biggest purse in the history of the sport. As Tommy blazes a violent path towards the title prize, his brother, Brendan, a former MMA fighter unable to make ends meet as a public school teacher, returns to the amateur ring to provide for his family. Even though years have passed, recriminations and past betrayals keep Brendan bitterly estranged from both Tommy and his father. But when Brendan's unlikely rise as an underdog sets him on a collision course with Tommy, the two brothers must finally confront the forces that tore them apart, all the while waging the most intense, winner-takes-all battle of their lives.“ Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is not the most emotionally stimulating category but yet this movie was able to bring me nigh unto tears, twice. The first was a scene involving Tommy Conlon (portrayed by the talented Tom Hardy) and his father Paddy Conlon (played by Nick Nolte). Throughout the film you feel bad for Paddy as he is just trying to make amends for the terrible father figure he was, on his journey to find his way back into either of his sons polar opposite lives. It climaxes for him when he is at the casino and is emotionally destroyed by his son. You next see him in his hotel suite listening to a tape recorder and drunk (which destroyed his sobriety that he had been working so hard on so he could be allowed back into Brendan Conlon’s life). Tommy takes over and helps his father get into bed then comforts him as he sobs himself to sleep in his son’s arms. The second scene is the finale. Brothers Tommy and Brendan fight their way through a major tournament to ultimately meet each other in the championship. Here’s the script of the final scene: “Brendan climbs into the cage as the house LIGHTS DIM. The crowd is going bonkers. And they EXPLODE when Tommy appears at the end of the tunnel with his hoodie up and begins his march toward the cage. The Marines shower him with cheers and "Hoo-ahs." The girls scream. The rest of the audience stamps their feet and chants his name. But he acknowledges no one, and the hard look on his face never wavers. INT. COLT'S PITTSBURGH FIGHT CLUB - MOMENTS LATER Fenroy and the crew on the edge of their seats, all staring at the big screen. ON TV SCREEN: TOMMY GETTING GREASED UP AND CLIMBING INTO THE CAGE. INT. TAXI - SAME A nervous Paddy sits in the back of the cab as the DRIVER navigates through holiday traffic. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA CAGE - SAME And here it is. The two brothers face to face in the middle of the ring, staring each other down. Tommy with his usual controlled fire, Brendan intense, searching his brother's eyes for some flicker of recognition. JOSH ROSENTHAL Gentlemen, this is the final. Five rounds. I expect a clean fight. Obey my commands at all times. Defend yourselves at all times. Touch gloves, go back, let's do this. As Rosenthal finishes his instructions, Brendan peers into Tommy's empty corner. BRENDAN Where's Pop? Tommy turns without answering. All business. Brendan returns to his corner. Looks at Tess. So much emotion on her face. 96. JOSH ROSENTHAL Gentlemen, are you ready? Are you ready? Let's go to war! Tommy comes right after his brother. Just like with his previous three opponents. A natural wrecking machine. Frank screams at Brendan to stay calm, but Tommy is all over him, POUNDING on him with savage intensity. As bad as the other fights were for Brendan, this one is worse. EXT. STARLIGHT DRIVE-IN - SAME The crowd is tense and subdued. It's not going well. ON MOVIE SCREEN: TOMMY KEEPS TATTOOING BRENDAN WITH HEAD SHOTS. BEATS HIS BROTHER WITH MALICE. IT'S HARD TO WATCH. INT. COLT'S PITTSBURGH FIGHT CLUB - SAME Fenroy and company thoroughly enjoying themselves. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA - SAME Tommy continues to batter Brendan, then he swoops in, picks him up, and SLAMS his big brother into the ground. Then he does it again. And again. And again. Brendan, the wind knocked out of him, is on his back, trying to protect himself from Tommy, who mounts him and starts blasting away with a BLUR of lefts and rights. The only thing that saves Brendan is the HORN. Which Tommy ignores, blasting his brother with a brutal CHEAP SHOT to the jaw well after the round had ended. TESS What was that! FRANK C'mon, Josh! Brendan lays on the ground as Josh Rosenthal pulls Tommy off him and admonishes him for the cheap shot. Tommy stares at Brendan. You want more? Frank runs into the cage with the stool and Brendan limps over to him and sits down. Brendan stares at Tommy, who paces in his corner like a caged animal. FRANK (CONT'D) Sit down. Look at me. Look at me, Brendan! Let it go! Breathe. (MORE) 97. FRANK (CONT'D) Beethoven. He's coming hard, just like we planned. I want you to angle out, hit, and move. BRENDAN Angle out, hit, and move. FRANK Good. Breathe. Relax. He's not your brother, right? He's just a guy who's in the way. Josh Rosenthal claps his hands. It's time. Frank glares at him as he picks up the stool. FRANK (CONT'D) I'm taking a little more time for the cheap shot! Do your job, Josh! Tess sits uncomfortably in her chair. Her husband's face is a mess. In front of her, Callen and Sheridan commiserate. J.J., the TapouT crew, and Colt Boyd look on. The electricity in the crowd is greater than ever. They want a champion. EXT. STARLIGHT DRIVE-IN - MOMENTS LATER Very quiet at the Drive-In. It's tough for everyone to watch what's happening to Brendan. ON MOVIE SCREEN: ROUND TWO. A REPEAT OF ROUND ONE. TOMMY JUST WHALING ON BRENDAN AND BRENDAN TRYING TO HANG ON FOR DEAR LIFE. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA - SAME The Marines in the crowd are all on their feet, screaming for Tommy to end it. The chant starts up again. 15,000 strong. "Tommy! Tommy! Tommy!" Frank tries to instruct Brendan, but he can't hear him, and he's too overwhelmed. Tommy presses Brendan against the cage and does the same thing Koba did. He lifts him off the ground, carries him on a dead run, and body SLAMS him so hard the cage shakes. Then Tommy mounts him and starts pounding away again. The HORN sounds ending the round, but this time it's Brendan who pops up and pushes Tommy. Tommy shoves him back. Rosenthal has to separate them as the crowd roars its approval. 98. CALLEN (V.O.) Here we go, Mom! Time to lock up your china, the boys are at it again! INT. COLT'S PITTSBURGH FIGHT CLUB - LATER Fenroy and company watching the big screen. ON TV SCREEN: ROUND THREE. MORE TOMMY DOMINATION, BUT BRENDAN IS SOMEHOW TAKING IT. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA CAGE - SAME Again, Tommy is on top of Brendan, trying to ground and pound him into submission. Frank, leaning on the apron nearby, screams at Brendan. FRANK Switch! Switch! Tommy tries to pound Brendan out, but Brendan latches on to Tommy's arm, wraps his legs around him, and REVERSES position, just as he did with Midnight, the Dane, and Koba. Tommy is in deep trouble. Brendan pushes him face down on the canvas and cranks his shoulder. There's no escape. SHERIDAN (V.O.) Oh my God, that's a deep omoplata! CALLEN (V.O.) He's doing it again! Conlon's doing it again! This is going to be over! Brendan applies intense pressure. Tommy's shoulder is contorted, WRENCHED backwards, and his face is a mask of pain. Tommy's in agony, but he won't give in. BRENDAN Tap, Tommy! Tommy SHRIEKS like an animal, but still won't quit. In fact, he elbows Brendan in the face in defiance. Brendan in turn cranks the shoulder even more. It's at the breaking point. BRENDAN (CONT'D) Tap! The shoulder twists. Twists. And then, audible only to Tommy and Brendan, CRACK. Dislocated. Then the HORN ending the round. 99. Brendan, worried he hurt his brother, leans over to see if Tommy's alright, but Tommy, like a wounded animal, leaps up and grabs Brendan around the throat with his one good arm. He shoves him all the way across the cage and into the fence, and it takes Rosenthal and Frank to separate them. EXT. STARLIGHT DRIVE-IN - SAME The crowd fired up by Brendan's comeback, and mesmerized by what's taking place in the cage between the brothers. It's complete and utter chaos in there. ON MOVIE SCREEN: TOMMY PACES IN HIS CORNER, HIS SHOULDER WRECKED. JOSH ROSENTHAL TRIES TO SEE IF HE'S ALRIGHT BUT TOMMY TURNS AWAY. HE'S NOT QUITTING AND NO ONE'S GOING TO TELL HIM HE HAS TO. INT. COLT'S PITTSBURGH FIGHT CLUB - SAME Sheer amazement that Tommy didn't submit. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA CAGE - SAME Tommy, flap down, tears of pain pouring down his face, stands defiantly in his corner. In the other corner, Frank attends Brendan. In the crowd, Tess covers her mouth. She can't believe what Tommy allowed to happen to him. Frank puts the stool down and gives Brendan some water. Brendan's face is wracked with guilt and concern over his brother. BRENDAN I popped his shoulder. FRANK Relax, breathe. BRENDAN I heard it tear. FRANK You popped his shoulder? Good. I want you to pop his other shoulder. This is not what Brendan wants to hear. He looks over to Josh Rosenthal. BRENDAN Josh! 100. Frank snaps. Grabs Brendan by the face. FRANK Hey! Hey! No Josh! Look at me! You got two rounds left! You need both rounds! Go in there, kick him in the head, take him down, and finish him! Rosenthal claps his hands. Frank exits the cage. The wounded Tommy stands in his corner, his ruined left arm hanging low. Brendan makes eye contact with him. BRENDAN Tommy! What are you doing? TOMMY Shut up! C'mon. BRENDAN What are you that crazy? JOSH ROSENTHAL Let's go to war! The BELL sounds. Round Four begins. Tommy throws useless right jabs. He's one handed and has no chance. Brendan stays away from him, not wanting to hurt his brother. BRENDAN What are you doing? It's over! Frank screams at Brendan from cageside to take the wounded Tommy out, but Brendan is reluctant. BRENDAN (CONT'D) It's over, Tommy. C'mon. We don't have to do this. Tommy and Brendan circle each other. Tommy throwing rights and wincing in agony at any movement. Brendan stares at him. Everything about him says "Quit, Tommy." But Tommy won't. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA TUNNEL - SAME Paddy runs up the tunnel, his All Access pass around his neck, and enters the arena. Sees Brendan and Tommy in the cage. Quickly figures out what the situation is. 101. EXT. STARLIGHT DRIVE-IN - SAME Zito and the kids staring at the screen, imploring Brendan to take the helpless Tommy out and win the championship. INT. BOARDWALK HALL CAGE - SAME Brendan continues to circle and not engage. Frank is livid. He knows he'll lose the fight on the judges' scorecards if he doesn't do something. FRANK Finish him! You finish him! Tommy keeps throwing defiant right jabs at Brendan. Finally, with no choice, Brendan fires back. He batters the defenseless Tommy up against the cage and POUNDS away at him, blasting his left shoulder with punches that make Tommy wince in pain. It's anyone's guess how he can take it. Brendan presses his brother up against the cage. Begging him to quit. But Tommy merely responds by elbowing Brendan in the face again. This sets the older brother off, and he resumes pounding on Tommy until the HORN sounds and Rosenthal pulls Brendan away. JOSH ROSENTHAL Break! Break! Brendan heads back to his stool as Tommy leans against the cage in agony. The Marines scream for him, but his eyes are glazed over. It's unthinkable that he hasn't broken yet. From near cageside, Paddy looks to the corner and makes eye contact with Brendan. They exchange a small look of understanding. A NOD. They both know what needs to be done. EXT. STARLIGHT DRIVE-IN - SAME The crowd wants a victory. Tito and the boys start the "Mis- ter C!" chant again. ON MOVIE SCREEN: FRANK ADMONISHES BRENDAN IN HIS CORNER. IT'S OBVIOUS WHAT HE'S TELLING HIM, BUT BRENDAN'S EYES ARE FAR AWAY. HE'S NOT LISTENING TO A WORD. INT. BOARDWALK HALL CAGE - MOMENTS LATER Tommy and Brendan stand for Round Five. Tommy's face is battered after Round Four and Brendan's face is ruined. 102. In the crowd, the "Tommy" CHANT begins in earnest. In fact, it may be louder than ever. Having done the impossible and carried on with one arm, Tommy is more superhuman and heroic than ever before. But his face tells another story. Soaked in pain and anguish. All his stoic walls crumbling down. INT. COLT'S PITTSBURGH FIGHT CLUB - MOMENTS LATER All eyes riveted to the screen, where the brothers circle each other as in the fourth round. ON SCREEN: MORE PAINFUL STABBING JABS FROM TOMMY. BRENDAN GIVES HIM ONE LAST, LONG LOOK, BUT TOMMY RESPONDS BY KICKING HIM IN THE LEG. FINALLY, LEFT NO CHOICE, BRENDAN SWOOPS. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA CAGE - SAME Brendan SLAMS Tommy to the ground. His face is contorted in merciless pain. Brendan slips his forearm under Tommy's neck and squeezes. Tommy struggles, but he's got one arm and there's NO ESCAPE. His face getting red from lack of oxygen. As an anguished Tess and a shaken Paddy look on, Brendan CHOKES his brother. As he does, he pleads with him. BRENDAN I'm sorry, Tommy! I'm sorry! Tommy continues to struggle. BRENDAN (CONT'D) Tap, Tommy! Tap! Tears pour down Tommy's face. Brendan is crushing his wind pipe. Tommy's eyes bulge. BRENDAN (CONT'D) I love you, Tommy! I love you! Tommy, about to pass out, no more air to breathe, slowly opens his left hand, looks at Brendan, and TAPS his shoulder on the Conlon family crest. Finally submitting. EXT. STARLIGHT DRIVE-IN - SAME While most of the crowd erupts in celebration and the kids leap into each other's arms, Joe Zito stares at the screen. ON MOVIE SCREEN: AS PEOPLE ENTER THE RING, BRENDAN AND TOMMY STAY ON THE GROUND, BRENDAN CRADLING HIS BROTHER IN HIS ARMS. 103. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA CAGE - SAME Frank makes eye contact with the jubilant Tess. Indicates she should meet them in the locker room. Meanwhile, people pour into the cage. Frank pushes them aside, keeping them away from Brendan and Tommy, who remain on the ground, exhausted. Tommy to begins to WEEP. INT. COLT'S PITTSBURGH FIGHT CLUB - SAME Silence at Colt's. Everyone spent from what they've seen. ON TV SCREEN: CHAOS IN THE RING. BRENDAN HOLDS TOMMY IN HIS ARMS AND PUSHES AWAY A DOCTOR. INT. BOARDWALK HALL ARENA CAGE - SAME Tommy buries his head in Brendan's chest. A torrent of sobbing gushes from him, years of pain pouring out in heavy bursts. From the crowd, Paddy stares into the cage and watches as Brendan comforts his little brother, then helps him to his feet. Callen, Sheridan, and J.J. Riley make their way inside for the post-fight interview, cameras trailing behind them. With Frank continuing to run interference, Brendan pushes through the crush of people, arm around Tommy, and exits the cage. The crowd parts for Tommy and Brendan. Paddy watches them, a tear in his eye. He's overwhelmed by the sight of his two boys together again. As the noise from the arena fades, the brothers walk through the wild crowd and continue on through the tunnel, arm in arm... THE END For me, the part the just punched me right through the gut was when Brandon started talking to Tommy, “I’m sorry, Tommy! I’m sorry!... Tap, Tommy! Tap!... I Love you, Tommy! I love you!”. As soon as this is all over Today by The National begins to play and it just causes you to melt inside. Warrior Is A Cinematic Masterpiece! And, if it can almost make me cry then it has my respect. Batman Trilogy: Batman Begins – The Beginning of one of the greatest trilogies out there. Christian Bale accepted the mantle of portraying the caped crusader and brought us one of the finest live action superhero movies. In a reversed dogmatism, the first film of the series was the worst of the three. Were I to make any changes to batman in general, in all the adaptations out there, the “batman voice” is one of my least favorite things. Why in the world does he need to talk like that? If people aren’t able to piece together who he is then changing his voice is more so just an awkward attempt to add another aspect to the film. Christopher Nolan is one of my favorite directors in Hollywood and Batman is no exception. Liam Neeson is a legend and making him the main villain, Ra’s Al Ghul,, made me happy. The Dark Knight – The Dark Knight is the best of the three, and that is because of Heath Ledger and his genius take as the Joker. Chalk full of one-liners his performance was so great that he won an academy award. - “Do you wanna know how I got these scars?” - “If you’re good at something, never do it for free.” - “How about a magic trick? I’m gonna make this pencil disappear. Ta-daa! It’s… it’s gone.” He showed off more talents than with just his acting. He directed both homemade videos that The Joker sends to GCN. As Christian Bale takes this journey of toeing the line with one of the greatest villains you’re constantly on edge, as is typical of a Christopher Nolan movie, wondering how close Batman is really going to get to breaking his one rule of killing someone. One dislike or complaint that I had for the movie was the casting choice for Rachael. Although she is Jake Gyllenhalls sister, I don’t have much care for her as an actress and feel like they could have, and should have, cast someone else in the role, especially since she does play an important part in not just The Dark Knight, but through into the next movie as well. The Dark Knight Rises – The voice of Bane is a heavy favorite among people. Plenty of memes have been created using Tom Hardy’s portrayal of him. Despite being just 5 foot 9 inches and Christian Bale 6 foot, the camera work makes it seem as though bane is a behemoth of a man compared to him. He was too big (tone wise) from his role in Warrior so in the dark knight they made him put on a little bit more of mass to make him look like he did in the movie. I remember the scene where he picked up batman and broke his back and his dialogue “I was wondering what would break first, your spirit, or your body”. The scene sent chills throughout my body and now every time the movie is on, no matter where I am or who I am with, there is without fail at least one person who will say the line along with him. When I first heard that Anne Hathaway was going to be playing catwoman I was a little upset. However, she did an incredible job and I ended up really liking her performance and my mind was changed. In this concluding film of the trilogy I was left at the end hoping that they were going to make another film with Robin since they teased him but unfortunately that never came to fruition. Peanut Butter Falcon: Top 3 movies of all time. Peanut Butter Falcon is the story of three people, Zak (Zack Gottsagen), Eleanor (Dakota Johnson) and Tyler (Shia LaBeouf). Let’s start with Zak. Zak is a down-syndrome kid who is confined to a nursing home because he has no family. He loves wrestling and wants to attend his favorite wrestler’s (Salt Water Redneck) wrestling school. One night with the help of his roomie, Carl, he covers himself up with lotion and slips through the bars that were put on his window since he tried to escape just a few days prior. As he is hiding out in a boat, in just his whitey tighties, the boat is suddenly boarded and takes off through the marshes. Eleanor. Sweet Eleanor, a nursing home employee is responsible for Zak. Upon his runaway she is commanded essentially by her boss to find him before he has to report it to the authorities and government. Tyler. The getaway boat driver is the main character. He lost it all essentially when his older brother died in a car crash. In an act of retaliation he burns down a fishers equipment and jumps on his boat to escape from them. This boat had a stowaway hiding in the back who almost got him caught, that stowaway was Zak. Initially Tyler is trying to get rid of Zak as soon as they get to some civilization but since Zak is determined to get to the wrestling school Tyler agrees to help him get there (after a few unfortunate events that sort of force him into it.) So Zak and Tyler, Shia LaBeouf and a down syndrome kid, brodies, set out on their journey with Eleanor trying desperately to find Zak. Tyler and Zak develop a very special and close bond with each other as they are trekking to their destination. Eventually Eleanor catches up to them and is livid at Tyler since she ran into him a few days before and he lied about knowing anything about Zak. Zak forces Eleanor’s hand into coming with them on their journey as he throws her keys into the water. The three of them set out and become a makeshift ragtag family. This is just one of those movies that you can watch multiple times a year and not get sick of. Additionally, it is because of this film that Shia LaBeouf has started to make a resurgence into the film industry and recreated himself. If you watch an emotional video you can see how much Zak changed Shia’s life and it only adds to the connection you feel to them and their characters as you embrace this heart warming adventure tale
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