Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Battle Bash #5: Iron Road, The Ghost of Stepford Suburbia

[The room is an artifact. A living fossil. A window to another time. The lime green cabinetry and rounded fridge emblazoned with a chrome symbol of a long forgotten product line, the brilliant red and chrome formica tabletop and matching chairs. The floral pattern lazy susan on the middle of the table our camera appears to be resting on with a swan-shaped sugar bowl. Everything all polished, shiny, and sparkling. It looks like the place was yanked right out of the 1950's.]

[It makes things all the more jarring when suddenly the lights go out for a moment, then when they come on again someone is sitting in the chair. Tanned, blonde hair in a pixie bob that looks cemented in place, a headband and matching floral print dress, and… oh.]

[The orange eyes and the grin that has far too many teeth, though they're white, overly large, and square instead of sharp, pointy, and/or serrated tell us that this is Claudia Kajara with a wig and a fuckton of makeup.]

[The smile, for once, doesn't reach her eyes and she seems sad and almost on the verge of tears.]

"It's not a fun time for you, is it Joe? With your contributions ignored, your hard work cast aside, and the time and effort you put in unrewarded."

[Despite the sorrow in her eyes, Claudia's voice is strangely happy and chipper.]

"That's okay. Well, you feeling that way. It's not okay to be dumped on. But it sure is a thing that's happening alright."

"Because now is not a fun time. This particular stretch of time has taken fun, wrapped it up in duct tape, stuffed it in George Clooney's bum, wrapped George Cloony up in duct tape, stuck him in a padded wooden crate and shipped him off to that warehouse at the end of Raiders of the Lost Arc."

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

DTW 2nd Year Anniversary: Of Sinking and Skeletons

Two years. Two whole years of DeathTrip Wrestling, and in just a few weeks I'd be defending the DTW World Championship once again.

With the big anniversary show looming on the horizon I was putting all my focus towards that instead of my various extracurricular activities.

The Skeleton Isles were growing nicely, soaking up calcium carbonate from ancient deposits on the seafloor and transmuting that into… well… bonestone. It sounds less lewd in Dwarven, let me assure you. It's a necromantic version of marble that operates as if it were still the raw bony bits that one uses for various forms of necromancy, except sturdier.

Using the usual necromantic forging techniques the stuff ended up somewhere between steel, mythril, and adamantite instead of approximating steel like the usual sort of bones. Necromatic Dragonbone was even better, but I certainly wasn't going to find any dragons here, and none of my bones were large enough to make swords out of anyway. Armor? Forget about it. I'm still using this ribcage, thank you very much.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Thoughtlets: Better Cakes from Mix

From here

"If y’all use a decent box mix and use melted butter instead of vegetable oil, an extra egg, and milk instead of water, no one can tell the difference. I sure as hell can’t.

Also, if you add a little almond extract to vanilla cake, or a little coffee to chocolate cake, it sends it through the roof.

This concludes me attempting to be helpful. "

And this from here

Take a cake mix from a box. Betty Crocker, Pillsbury, Duncan Hines, whatever the hell is on-sale.

They usually ask for you to add in some water, some cooking oil, and egg whites.

Fuck that bullshit.

Instead, replace water with milk (or buttermilk), use butter instead of oil, and use the whole goddamn egg. Toss in some extra vanilla extract.

If you want to make it a bit spiced, add in some cinnamon/nutmeg/allspice

Want to make it gently lemony? Zest some lemon peel into the batter.

Want it extra dense and moist? Add another fucking egg, half a package of vanilla pudding powder mix, and make sure to whip that batter extra hard and long.

Welcome to rich, moist cakeland, entrance fee: $5

Enjoy impressing your friends.


Nice seeing this going around again!

My standard cake is box mix + milk for water + melted butter for oil + dash vanilla extract + frosting from scratch. This really seems to hit the right spot for people of “mmm, homemade” but also “exactly like Mom used to make.” (Do that for a yellow cake with chocolate buttercream frosting, add candles, and serve to a college student, for the maximum “this is exactly what I didn’t want to admit I wanted” potential.)

Seconding the addition of coffee to chocolate cake; a tablespoon of instant coffee powder in a dark chocolate cake makes it taste chocolatey-er without actually adding a perceptible coffee flavor (I don’t like coffee flavor, personally, and I still do this).

Another good option is a box lemon cake mix plus maybe 3 lemons. Zest the lemons, set the zest aside, then juice them and use that in place of the water; then use the zest to flavor the frosting. Adds a nice fresh kick.

Chocolate chips can be dumped straight into chocolate cake mix without fussing with anything to compensate. Sprinkles can go into white cake mix to make your own “confetti cake” with any specific color combo you like. Any kind of dried fruit can be chopped to raisin-size, soaked in hot water (or, better yet, hot juice with a couple of citrus peels added) for an hour, drained, and then added to batter.

Replacing part (up to maybe 1/3) of the water with yogurt (and then the rest with milk as usual) will give you a denser cake; make sure to check if it’s cooked through, and bake a little longer if necessary.

Swirling things through batter for that fancy marbled look is easy. Consider melting chocolate chips with butter, or mixing brown sugar with cinnamon and a little melted butter, or making up two different cake mixes and swirling those together.

I swear by the Cake Mix Doctor’s two cookbooks (one’s general, one’s specifically for chocolate cakes). I think every birthday cake I had as a child was out of those.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Tokyo Gore Noir #10/11, Of Repugnance and Revolution

Fuck you, Josh Kennedy.

Fuck you, Eddy Poe.

And fuck you, Masatake Kawamata.

Fuck all of you.

Fuck you with a cactus.

Fuck you like it's a chore.

But fuck Kennedy in particular.

Because you haven't been paying attention at all.

You'd have to be living in a cave in the middle of the remote American wilderness with a bag on your head, plugs in your ears, and your head up your ass to not have heard literally ANYTHING about me.

"Blah blah blah, Kalinda, you sit on the throne of DTW surrounded by everything you've ever wanted!"

And you're sitting on a motherfucking throne of lies, Kennedy.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

DTW Deathmatch Demolition II, Of Valor and Villains

[The scene opens with the ocean, the waxing gibbuous moon, still nearly full, shining down from the cloudless starry sky. The lovely view of the night, enough to make poets and fans of purple prose sploosh in their prissy, pretty, pansy pantaloons, is cut out by a suddenly flash of blue, the camera adjusting from taking in the night sky to focusing on the source of the blue blaze.]

[It's none other than recently ascended (or would that be descended?) Evil Overlord and Bosslady Extraordinaire Kalinda Kriegsdottir. An orb of eldritch flame held in her gauntleted hand.]

[She tosses the ball harmlessly from hand to hand, then grips it like a basketball player about to make a three pointer before she smiles. She tears the orb in half and sends the two smaller orbs into nearby braziers, their prepared oily contents catching fire and illuminating the scene with a brighter light.]

[DTW's resident Necromancer Queen and World Champion is seated upon her throne of skulls and bones, her attire different than usual. Her pauldron has been replaced with something more spiky and sinister. Like if a tribal tattooed buggered one of those oversized World of Warcraft shoulderm pads and out popped a creepy kind skeletal looking black and silver baby that grew up on a diet of horse steroids. Also yes, I said shoulderm. That was totally on purpose. It's cute and I will not hear a mean word against it. Because I'm wearing a voice over headset. These headphones are thick as heck, you realize.]

[Her top is also different. The half 'n half design is gone, replaced by pure black, once again adorned with silver stylings meant to imitate bones. In this care a sternum and ribcage. She's still got the black cargo pants, but her kneepads are now stylized like jawless skulls, and the leg guards are a black matte material adorned with stylized silver ribcages.]

[She's also changed her hairstyle, pulling most of it back into a ponytail and leaving her bangs going to either side of her heart-shaped face. Kalinda Kriegsdottir smiles, showing off her fangs, and tilts her head, her bangs moving aside momentarily to show that she's got the beginnings of tiny horn nubs going on. *sniffle* My dark mistress is growing up and starting to blossom into true dragondom!]

[Next to her throne on a purple velvet pillow is the DTW World Championship, all polished and spiffy. Jokingly dubbed the "killer codpiece" the tribal design resembles a bearded lion's face composed of shapes resembling dragon's wings, a spider, and if you squint really hard a stabby bit that extends down the the groin that looks kind of like a demonic wasp. Kalinda's new attire aesthetic seems to be suited to match the style of the belt almost perfectly.]

[She beckons the camera forward and sits up upon her throne. She steeples her fingers and takes on a serious expression.

"Before we start things off I need to make something perfectly clear, because nobody seemed to get the full picture. When I said I was going to be a villain, y'all jumped to conclusions and immediately decided that I was going to immediately become some sort of puppy-kicking, baby-eating monstrosity that was going to be a dick to everybody for no reason."

[Kalinda extends six inches worth of forked tongue and blows a raspberry.]

"And that's just not true."

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

DTW Tokyo Gore Noir #9, Of Ostentation and Oases

[We open in the viewing lounge aboard A Zeppelin Called Trouble. The massive airship appears to be drifting above the ocean. The sky is awash with fiery colors while the sun is slowly setting into the brilliant blue-green sea.]

[But rather than staring out at the picturesque sight, Kalinda Kriegsdottir is instead hunched over a cluttered table. There ware printouts, a good deal of hand-written notes in an unfamiliar alphabet, a large map showing the island chain outside, photos of various DTW wrestlers (which seem to be focused on them winning titles or events in other companies), several photos of graveyards, a globe with bits of yarn pinned to it, and what looks to be plans for a garden with several layers of octagon-shaped trellises set up with a sinister looking centerpiece marked "DREAD GAZEBO!" in large, red letters.]

[Kalinda picks up a photo of Masatake Kawamata, fresh from his victory holding the CPW World Heavyweight Championship up high. She looks at it, sighs, shakes her head, and gives it a fling that sends it flying across the room.]

So this is what it's come to. Literally having to face my own creation. Save a dude from death, drag his soul back from its journey into whatever shitty afterlife you people have that's probably just as shitty as your shitty, shitty planet, stuff it back in his crispified corpse, de-crispify it, and then make the damned thing move again, and what do you get?

The bastard goes and wins a goddamned tournament with the intent on taking from you the prize that it took you three fucking years to get. Three fucking years where every title shot, every other match, and the entire backstage climate were rife with bullshit.

Three goddamned years where every chance I had was stolen away from me. Three goddamned years where I tried to play nice and do things by the rules, but everybody else decided to fuck the rules and propel themselves into title victories by having their friends help them. The rules were beaten, gagged, stuffed in a gimp suit, and became the centerpiece of a super-bukkake circle jerk of politics and corruption.

I'm happy for you, Masatake, I really am.

Somebody had to win the motherfucking Carnage Carnival, and you were one of the few rainbow sprinkles atop a festering mountain of repugnant shitheaps with nothing but avarice and hubris in their hearts.