50 gallon bradford white water heater

Closure. Stories From the AMTS

2023.05.30 07:55 Dutchie444 Closure. Stories From the AMTS

“Hey Raz, I got one!” Raz’s voice was cut by static as he called back, “Great! …at quarry …die.” Well, that wasn’t ominous at all, I thought to myself as I adjusted the rear-view mirror to check on the operator I had just blown past. They were doubled over coughing, their gas mask swayed side to side on the ground next to their feet. I don’t know what compelled me to not flatten what I had thought to be an AQ soldier, but I’m glad I didn’t.
I slammed my hummer in reverse, coming to a stop next to the helpless operator. “Hop in bud, we can get you to final exfill yet.” He slowly hauled himself into the bed of my hummer, landing with a dull thud and a groan as he fell onto his back. We cleared the gas, and I was immediately put on edge as my passenger started to gain consciousness. If he was planning anything nefarious, there wasn’t much I could do about it now. “You good back there? Normally I’d stop to send an invite but given the situation that might have just caused more problems.” He leaned through the non-existent rear window, “Nah, I understand man. When we get further from the gas we can stop and squad up. Don’t need to risk lighting each other up if things get hot at the exfill.” I couldn’t help but chuckle, “I don’t think that would be much of an issue regardless. Hey, we didn’t leave any of your friends back there, did we? I know we peeled out pretty quick.” I saw him shake his head and point to our left in the rear-view mirror. “We got split up, but they were running for a car, so I wasn’t too worried.” I followed his finger, a white hatchback cruised along parallel to us, swerving through buildings trying not to eat too many AQ bullets. “Hey boys, Dutch here is gonna roll with us to final. We’ll squad up when we get there.” I was barely able to make out one of his squad mates call out “Tight!” over his earpiece.
“Hey, listen, I’ve got friend I’m rolling with. His name’s Raz, he’s gonna meet us at final. If you see a red, white, and blue LTV, don’t shoot alright.” Raz chimed in, his radio finally clear of the static, “That’s very kind of you to tell them not to shoot me Dutch.” Before I could respond, a black turreted LTV slid out of Said City ahead of us. “Is that your boy Dutch?” I wanted to give my passenger the benefit of the doubt, it is windy in the box after all, he might not have heard me. “Nah man, wrong colour, and he didn’t have a turreted LTV last I saw.” The black LTV continued North along the main road as we cut away into the quarry proper. “Raz, company is headed your way. Looks like it’s just a solo in that truck but you can never be too careful.” “Thanks for the heads up Dutch.”
I rolled to a stop at the base of the helicopter ramp, gently flattening a couple of AQ who were getting a little to close to the bird for comfort, just shy of the battery running dry. The other two operators in the hatchback slid to a stop just down the hill from us. I got out of the hummer, a tad worried that my good fortune was about to come to an end at the hands of these fellas. As they ran up the hill, the notification finally popped. I accepted and ran down the hill to grab the hatchback, breathing a sigh of relief. “Wait, where you goin’ Dutch?” One of my clients called out. “Raz and I will run interference while we wait for the chopper to take off. Any AQ or unfriendly operators are gonna have to go through us.” “You keep talking about this Raz guy, but I’ve yet to see anyone other than that black LTV.” Almost on queue, a black LTV flew up the hill narrowly missing my hatchback. My clients went into a frenzy. “Operators pushing us! Take ‘em down!” The LTV spun in the sand in front of me, a glorious and perfectly oiled moustache glinting in the Al Mazrah sun. “Hold your fire! It’s Raz!” I called from below my clients. I sent an invite to him which he had hopped out and accepted faster than any of these guys could pull the trigger. “You see the operator that was in that earlier?” Raz shook his head, “No, I pulled up on it and they were gone. Must be out on foot somewhere.”
With 5 seconds left on the clock, there wasn’t enough time to go find them, our clients now panicking as they realized we weren’t on the bird. “What are you two doing?!” They shouted from the air as we waved goodbye. “Al Mazrah is our home gentlemen. That bird was never meant for us.” I gave Raz a pat on the shoulder as the gas rapidly approached, another successful day had come to a close.
The clack of a Kastov charging handle was almost unmistakable. We both turned to see the operator from the LTV standing there, rifle honed on us. “Well shit.” Their rifle dropped towards the dirt as they looked back over their shoulder at the nearly out of sight exfill chopper. They pushed through us, wandering towards the North side of the quarry. Raz and I locked eyes, shrugging in unison. That was one of those moments where we really wouldn’t have blamed them for their decision, whatever it might have been. “We better get back to HQ, Compton said I.T dropped off something for you.” Raz said as the gas engulfed us.
“I’m going back to the island boss.” My hands were shaking as I gripped the file folder that I.T had left for me. “Twitch.” “He’s back, it took him a bit, but he’s managed to re-take the castle and hunker down since we last saw him. And if he’s back then we might finally be able to get some proper intel on those blue tracers, direct from the source.” I handed the folder to Raz. He took it, turning to no doubt address the rest of the crew. I grabbed his shoulder, stopping him before he could speak. “Not everybody, not this time. They’ve doubled the defences; we’d be walking into a slaughterhouse.” “Well, you can’t go in there alone, we look out for our own Dutch, you know that.” Raz’s brow tightened, I could tell he was already trying to figure out what my plan was. “I’m bringing Maze and Alex. They’ll provide sniper cover while I infiltrate the castle. I still have my old uniform. As long as they haven’t drastically changed up their callsigns, I should be able to get in undetected.” I could tell Raz wasn’t convinced. “Dutch, like you said, you’d be walking into a slaughterhouse. How does you going in solo make that any better.” “After what happened in the complex…I’m not putting anyone else at risk, I can’t. The Bomb Maker…Twitch, I’ve gotta face him myself. Look him in the eyes so he knows I crawled out of Hell to drag him back down there.” “Alright, I couldn’t really stop you if I wanted to, could I?” Raz shrugged. “No, not unless you shot me, and honestly, I’d take those odds.” I punched his shoulder and started heading for the breakroom to grab Maze and Alex. “You keep that up I’ll be moving you back out to that sea can of yours.” Raz smirked.
The locks took a bit of fighting to get open. While this footlocker had only been on Ashika Island for a few months, the constant spray of salt water had worn away what little integrity it once had. The black uniform, emblazoned with the Rook and Spade of Shadow Company, was still in excellent condition, save for a bullet hole just under where the plate carrier would sit. I paused for a moment, holding it up in the air, memories of the past flooding in. “Not a lot of fond memories in that uniform I take it.” Maze called out from the catwalk in our home away from home. “I think part of the problem is that there are good memories. It’s a little concerning that such fond memories can hide out amongst so much evil.” “We’ve all done things we aren’t proud of. Some of us just did things other people also wouldn’t be proud of either.” Alex chuckled to himself as he cleaned his rifle on the cot next to me. I grimaced, mostly because he was right. I slipped into the old black fatigues and strapped on my old plate carrier. My weapons were all still intact too, I pulled my Taq-56 out of the footlocker, running my fingers over the engraving in the side, ROOK-XLIV. I cycled the charging handle a few times before loading in a fresh magazine and setting it on the cot next to me. I pulled out a pistol belt, two pearl handled revolvers, one with an ebony Rook on the grip, the other, an ebony Spade. Umbra Catavae engraved along each barrel. Maze had come down from the rafters now, a look of mixed intrigue and concern on her face, “I take it those don’t invoke fond memories.” I had done a poor job of hiding my look of disgust. “No, unfortunately they do.” I felt a wave of guilt wash over me. “Each of these was given to me for completing outstanding performance in the field. I did things I’m not proud of, and I was rewarded for it, handsomely. Holding these in my hands, I feel the same pride I had felt when they were first handed to me. It makes me sick.” I strapped the belt around my waist. The pearl handles shining against my all black silhouette. Alex piped up again, “Hey, at least you are trying to make amends for your sins, not many can say the same.” I let out a long sigh, “I suppose you’re right. You both remember the plan?” “Get to the radio towers and start lighting the place up when shit inevitably hits the fan.” Maze grinned. “Close enough.” I pulled my balaclava up and headed for the door.
The guard at the gate didn’t immediately shoot me which gave me some spark of hope that this might work. “In position!” Alex and Maze called out almost simultaneously. “Jinx, you owe me a beer!” Maze rejoiced. “What? Why would I give you a beer for that?” Alex sounded genuinely confused. “Hey, cut the chatter you two, don’t need to give them any reason to not let me in alright.” The guard held up his hand. “I don’t recognize you, let’s see your I.D.” I held up my old I.D card. “Well I’ll be damned, look who crawled out if his grave.” He pulled my mask down to confirm. “You look pretty good for a corpse, though your I.D card is out of regulation. You might want to stop by the I.T guy to get a new one made.” “Thanks, I’ll head right over.” The first thought that came to my mind was Bob. There’s no way he still worked for these assholes, is there.
“You used your old I.D?! You mad man!” Maze cackled over the radio. “Ok, I’ll admit, this wasn’t my greatest plan. I honestly thought they’d just capture me after seeing who I was.” Alex cut me off, “Go with the flow I suppose.” “Spade-499 up one-two.” The local radio channel began to drown out my squad’s comms. “Rook-3468 down one-one” “This is some odd radio traffic Dutch.” Alex quipped. I watched as a Shadow Company mercenary approached a stairwell, each step primed and ready to pop a leg off whichever unfortunate soul chose to ascend. “Spade-5454 up one-two.” “It’s how they know to deactivate the traps.” I whispered into our secure line. I approached the same stairwell. “Rook-44 up one-two.” I could hear the traps audibly click off. The guard at the to put his hand out as I reached the top step. “Sorry, no ghosts allowed on the second floor.” “Ghost? What…” He bent over laughing. “I’m just messing with you man. They said you died holding off the ULF while Bob and Twitch escaped, going out in a blaze of glory. Clearly, they didn’t have their facts straight. Glad to have you back.” I’m glad I had the balaclava on because I was struggling to hide my confusion. Last I checked I was the scape goat for the largest backstab in Shadow Company history, not a hero. I was never a hero when I worked for them. “I take it you are going to see the boss, call up two-zero, we don’t want people to be just guess on the fly, just in case someone tries to sneak in.” If only he knew.
“We don’t have eyes up there Dutch. Whatever happens, you’re on your own.” I could hear a tinge of worry in Alex’s voice. “Just make sure whoever is in here doesn’t get reinforcements.” “You got it!” Alex and Maze both called out in unison. “Jinx, you owe me another beer.” “There’s free beer at headquarters, why would I owe you a beer for that.” Alex called back clearly still confused. “Radio silence please. I’ve got a rat to kill.” I took a deep breath, pulling my Bryson from its sheath, the chrome exterior brushed over with a dull grey to blend in. “Rook-44 up two-zero.”
“Well, well, well. I was wondering when I’d see you again after our last encounter. Urzikstan and Al Mazrah clearly hadn’t kicked your ass enough so you decided to come crawling back to me for another round.” The traps clicked off. “Come on up, I’ve been looking forward to this.” I slowly ascended, keeping my Bryson trained at the top of the stairs, my eyes scanning each stair for an actual trap. As I crested the stairwell, my eyes were immediately drawn to him. His back turned to me, Trophy Systems whirring and clicking around him. “I missed you Dutch. Well, the old you. The one that would shoot through a hostage just to prove a point, the one that would dangle captives from buildings by their collar until they squawked like a bird, and then still dropped them anyways. I miss the Dutch that smoked Keller because his gas mask worked and yours didn’t when we those crazy Russian’s tried to hit us with mustard gas. I still get a little nauseous when I think about you peeling his face out of there.” “I’ve changed Twitch, I’ve moved past all that. I found a calling that doesn’t require me to be a conniving bastard.” Twitch laughed as he turned around, his hands empty. I kept my Bryson trained on him. “That’s what you think I am huh? I prefer shrewd businessman, but if that’s what helps you sleep at night.” He walked to one of the barred windows. “You really think what you and those taxi driving hooligans are doing matters?” “Clearly it does, or you and the Chemist wouldn’t be working so hard to sabotage us.” I took a few steps towards him. “Well, I suppose it matters to one of us. The Chemist and Raz go way back, but you know that. What I care about is the money, and I get a lot of money for helping that crazy bastard try to wipe out your little band of Merry Men.” “And Women. This guy just loves the sound of his own voice. Can I remove his head already? He’s looking right at me, practically begging me to pull the trigger.” I could hear the contempt in Maze’s voice. Twitch always did love a monologue. “You can still fix your mistakes Twitch. Gives us what info you have on those tracers of yours and I might consider not killing you.” I snarled. “When you went soft Dutch, you lost any respect I might have had for you. We are long past the point where you can intimidate me. Besides, any info I did have, is with the Chemist. He paid a handsome sum to get the formula, and really, it was becoming a logistical nightmare to ship enough of those little blue gems across the sea. Better for everyone to have it made close to the front lines.”
“Spade-101 up two-zero.” Bob’s voice cut through the tension. “Well I’ll be, it looks like we are gonna have a little family reunion.” Bob’s head poked up the stairs, “Hey boss, another server bank has shorted out from the sea air, I told you we should invest in better waterproofing the housings but if you still…” He trailed off as I dropped my Bryson, the sling catching it just before it hit the ground, and drawing my two revolvers. “Oh, hey Dutch. Nice to see you too.” Bob stammered. I cocked the hammer on each one, keeping one trained on each of my old squad mates. “Really Bob? Really! I understand you sticking around the day of the heist. But now? After everything that Shadow Company has done to these countries. To its own people.” Before he could respond, a siren blared over the intercom system. “Defensive positions! Hostile operators have breached the perimeter.” “Dutch you’ve got six operators approaching the castle, I think it’s time to bounce.” Maze was drowned out by her own gun fire, her Signal .50 raining death into the courtyard. “Looks like our time is up here Dutch. Since you clearly don’t have los cojones to pull the trigger, you might as well see yourself out, and let me and my men handle this.”
“Fuck it.” The hammer of the first revolver slammed down, dropping Bob instantly. I turned to face Twitch, his face a mix of surprise and pride. “Maybe I was wrong, the old Dutch still lives.” I charged forward, tackling him through the window and off the roof. Both of us lay on the ground, groaning as the chorus of gunfire roared around us. He dove for one of my pistols, but unfortunately for him, I had managed to hold on to the other, putting a round through his arm just before he could grab the gun. He rolled out of the way of the second round, bringing his one working hand up to the radio on his chest. The explosion from the castle threw both of us across the courtyard, debris raining down around us. I felt like I was reliving one of the worst days of my life all over again. I hauled myself to my feet, Shadow Company mercenaries and operators wandered aimlessly through the ashes. Everyone seemed too disoriented to fight. “I think it’s time to leave Dutch.” “I second that.” Maze and Alex were barely audible over the ringing in my ears. “Regroup at the boat. If I’m not there in 5, go without me.” I never heard a response, even if they tried, they wouldn’t have convinced me to leave, not with him still breathing.
I combed through the smoke and fire, carefully checking every nook and cranny I came across but the slippery rat was nowhere to be seen. “Looks like you 3 aren’t thick as thieves after all, eh Dutch. Poor Alex here was left all alone on the beach, no boat to be seen.” Twitch was sucking in air between words, no doubt kept standing by adrenaline. “You lay a finger on him, and I’ll make you wish you had died in that explosion.” I spat into my mic. “Don’t make me wait too long.”
I limped over a hill towards the beach where we were supposed to regroup. “Alex! Where’s Maze?” I called out as I stumbled down the sand bank. Alex didn’t respond, his head held in a tight headlock by Twitch, my second pistol against his temple. “She abandoned you both, and now I get the pleasure of killing you both after yet another betrayal. When will you learn Dutch. This world is a cruel place. Only the strong survive, clearly Maze knew that.” Twitch cut me off before I could retort. “Save the fight me with honour B.S that I know you are gonna spew.” I’m gonna kill you and your buddy and salvage what little I can of this operation. Then maybe retire to Cuba. I do love a good cigar.” “Adios, pendejo!” Alex brought his arm down, the knife concealed in his hand connecting with Twitch’s thigh. Twitch let out a high-pitched yelp, letting loose a round from the revolver which narrowly grazed Alex’s hair. Alex dove into the sand right as Twitch’s shoulder exploded in a pink mist followed shortly by the unmistakable crack of Maze’s Signal .50. I squinted trying to see where the shot came from, all I caught was the glint from her scope in the sun, the boat hardly visible in the rolling surf.
I limped forward, Bryson in hand, chrome starting to show through the worn grey paint. I kicked the revolver away from Twitch, placing a boot on his chest and the barrel of my Bryson against his forehead. He began to mumble and cry, hardly able to string together an understandable sentence. “Save it, you’re gonna need your energy for what comes next.” Our boat slammed into the shore, Maze hopping off, rifle raised and ready. “Oh shit I actually hit that!” “I’m not gonna lie, I thought you’d actually just bailed.” I laughed as she helped Alex to his feet. “You still go those claymores?” I asked Maze as Twitch continued to writhe in panic under my boot. “You wanted the old Dutch, eh Twitch. Ask and you shall receive.” Maze handed me the claymores, while Alex kept sidearm pointed at Twitch. I planted 4 around him, just far enough away that they wouldn’t go off unless he moved. I drew one of my revolvers, popping the cylinder out and emptying all but one round. I gave the cylinder a spin before flicking it closed. I tossed the revolver at Twitch. “Don’t waste that on me. You’ll only regret it in about an hour.” I took my other revolver, and hurled it towards the sea, the pearl grip glinting in the sun as it spun through the air, disappearing into the crashing waves. “Good riddance.” I sighed, that chapter of my life finally ended. Twitch was silent, his whimpering now just deep, laboured breathing. I turned back before I stepped onto the boat, watching as his hand slowly moved to the pistol in the sand next to him. “Well played Dutch, well played.”
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2023.05.30 06:52 MyDogLovesmooch AquaQuartz Pool Filter Sand: What to Know for Pool Owners

AquaQuartz Pool Filter Sand: What to Know for Pool Owners
If you own an above-ground pool, you know the importance of maintaining clear and clean water.
One of the key components to achieving this is the filter sand you use in your pool's filtration system. A standout product in this category is the AquaQuartz Pool Filter Sand, a #20 grade silica sand that has garnered positive reviews from users and comes with a host of benefits.


What Makes AquaQuartz Special?

Aqua Quartz Pool Filter Sand is a 100% natural product with no added chemicals, making it a safe choice for your pool and for the environment.

It is inert, odorless, and does not stain or solidify. The sand is fine yet sharp-edged, which is ideal for filtration purposes.

These sharp edges are instrumental in separating particles and enabling effective filtration, especially in sand filter systems, which are among the easiest ways to keep a pool clean​.

User Experiences

The proof of the product's quality lies in the experiences of its users. Pool owners have praised AquaQuartz for its efficacy in maintaining pool cleanliness.

One user mentioned that they used this sand for their filter, and the filtration result for their pool has been satisfactory. Another user affirmed that the product worked well and kept their pool clean.

It's not just pool owners who appreciate AquaQuartz. Aquarium enthusiasts have also given positive reviews, noting that the sand creates minimal clouding in new tanks, even without prewash, and is safe for aquatic animals like Cichlids that mouth filter the substrate​.

Considerations for Purchase

Although the product generally receives high praise, potential buyers should be aware of a few issues.

Some customers have reported that the weight of the sand they received was less than the 50 lbs advertised on the package. There have also been instances where the packaging was damaged during shipping, resulting in sand spills.

Tips for Above-Ground Pool Owners

If you're considering AquaQuartz for your above-ground pool, here are a few tips:
  1. Backwash the filter immediately after adding new sand to ensure it's clean and ready to operate effectively​2​.
  2. Monitor the pressure gauge on your filter system. Normal operating pressure is between 6-12 psi, and a surge in pressure or weak water return flow may indicate it's time to backwash​2​.
  3. Remember to backwash your filter regularly. This process, which involves reversing the flow of water through the filter, clears it of dirt and debris​2​.

In summary, AquaQuartz Pool Filter Sand stands out as a reliable choice for above-ground pool owners. Its natural composition, effective filtration, and positive user experiences make it a commendable product. However, ensure to consider all aspects of purchase and usage for the best results.

submitted by MyDogLovesmooch to u/MyDogLovesmooch [link] [comments]

2023.05.30 06:22 ElWasHeree Hello! I just got a new goldfish from a fair- infact a bit too many.

Hello! I just got a new goldfish from a fair- infact a bit too many.
Hello all! PLEASE HELP (long story incoming)
So my mom got 6 goldfish from a fair...... SIX?! She still believed a tiny space and such is fine for them. I quickly told her no, they grow very big, what's more can eat eachother if cramped- bla bla bla. Long story short, the most I could convince her with is a 20 gallon tank. Enough for BARELY 2 goldfish, but that seems cruel. I'm keeping one goldfish (the girl in the pics) I named her Strawberry or Berry for short. We will pick up her tank tomorrow (got a kit with heater, filter, net, scrubber I'm pretty sure. Basically all the essentials, as well for some white substrate, pellets, and a small house and aquatic plants and decor (pretty sure all fake) this is just to start. I'm going to be buying more things for her tank this upcoming week but yes. Point is- I think the kindest thing to do is have one and euthanize the rest. I am very upset with my mom and I feel sick, I don't know what to do. I can't have any other place for the others, and having them al cramped and slowly dying sounds miserable. I'm planning on feeding them a good amount today and tomorrow before doing an ice bath. It seems it is the quickest an most painless method, taking only 5 to 10 second's and the fish should not be able to feel the temperature. Going to get the water cold, take out all the ice so no one gets stuck to it, and.... Well yknow. I feel sick. And I don't know what else to do, I don't want them to eat eachother, or be poisoned by one dying and have the rest die slowly, or all live in one tiny cramped area. And yeah- I'm really really upset. I kept the youngest and I'm asking if anyone wants a goldfish bit I don't think anyone will. Anyway, that's the story. If anyone can offer me any advice for what yo do or anything else to do, either for the sad 5 fish or Strawberry and what I need and how to care for her that would be great. I'm pretty upset at my mom and I'm basically rushing Reaserching how to care for this sweet girl. Thank you and please let me know.
(If it wasn't clear Berry is the one in the pic, as soon as the decorations and food arrives I feed and put some substrate and a decoration in the tiny tank she is in now. I will be transferring her to the 20 gallon one after school tomorrow. She will be ok to wait 24 hours right? Because that's around how long it will take to be able to get the tank, set it up, and put her in it)
Ok now for real bye! And please let me know for all questions
submitted by ElWasHeree to Goldfish [link] [comments]

2023.05.30 04:51 BaconCat10 [FS]-West Los Angeles, CA- $50 - Aqueon 10g Starter kit + extra filters + spongebob house decoration, comes with everything included in the kit (Used) (LOCAL PICKUP ONLY)

[FS]-West Los Angeles, CA- $50 - Aqueon 10g Starter kit + extra filters + spongebob house decoration, comes with everything included in the kit (Used) (LOCAL PICKUP ONLY)
In very good working order! No scratches or damage. Tank/Filteheater were rinsed in tap water only. Tank housed 1 common goldfish that has since been upgraded to better accommodations.

Comes with everything included in the new starter kit:
-20"L x 10"W x 12"H 10 Gallon tank
-Tank hood with built in LEDs
-QuietFlow Pro Filter
-50w Heater
-Fish net
-Stick on thermometer
-Sample packs water conditioner and fish flakes
-Small container tropical fish flakes
-All manuals and original coupons included (I think they expire end of year 2023)

-Spongebob house decoration free with kit
DM for more information or if you have any questions!
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2023.05.30 03:53 ConsultantForLife Help a newbie out - is the heater working? And two simple questions

Help a newbie out - is the heater working? And two simple questions
This pool was installed late last fall - right before it got cold. We did not have any opportunity to use it last year.
The pool was just opened up a week ago. We have been running the heater once it got above 70 degrees. The heater is a heat pump. The pool is 20x40 and roughly 26,000 gallons. On days when it's above 80 at peak temp we've run the heater and the biggest swing we have seen is from 73 > 75 degrees, when the heater was running for 8+ hours and the air temp was above the pool temp. If this heater is working it's completely ineffective. I would expect the sun to raise the pool temp that much. I would hope the heater would give use +1 degree F an hour, based on what we were sold and what others have said.
I've tried with the cover closed and open - no noticeable difference. At night it's still dipping into the 50's so basically we just start over again the next morning.
I have backwashed the sand, etc.
Also, two probably easy questions.
What is the orange handle on the far right side? It's an intake from somewhere - next to it are the intakes from the scimmers and drains.
What is the blue handle on the left side? It would appear to be a valve that forces the water returning to the pool to go through the heater. If this is 100% open the heater gives an error saying there's not enough water pressure. If using the heater should this be 100% closed?
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2023.05.30 03:42 Butchershopboner Machinist Snack

I had a few people asking about my smoked fish recipe this weekend so I’d figured I should share. Good recipe for trout to catfish and carp. Cup brown sugar Cup white sugar Cup of salt (pickling or canning) Gallon of water and mix and soak I usually brine for couple days and smoke them. Let sit in fridge for couple days bring to work to share with coworkers.
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2023.05.30 03:16 Rafke77 Fancy living

Fancy living
We're trying to give our ducks the fancy life. Just finished with building a gazebo over their pool with 3 extra grain bin stuffing pieces. I added stairs, and a hinged platform for (we like to drain it every couple weeks to give it fresh water) them to get out ok if the water level drops. I added a small soda bottle under it for extra buoyancy. Covered their entry into the shed and outside automagicly refilling water bowl, I have a second bowl inside. Both are tapped into a 50 gallon plastic drum. For the winter I have roofing deicing cable wrapped under the inside water bowl along the water line and around the bottom of the water drum. I have the foil faced bubble wrap around the drum and water line to keep it extra insulated. Here in northern Indiana we get a few days in the winter for the high temperatures below 0° f. This was a fun project! Still a few more plans to go until it's done.
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2023.05.30 03:04 ZookeepergameNo2941 Hello. Again. In crisis. Again

Hello. Again. In crisis. Again
So once again my levels are all over the place. Ph 6, Ammonia off the charts, Nitrite .50, nitrate 5.0 Long story short, 20 gallon long, setup 4 months ago completely cycled (i thought) 1 large and one medium Whisper filter, day night incandescent tube light cycle, no live plants, glowlight rasboras(6) Mollies (5 babies, parents all died to possible ammonia poisoning) blue shrimp (5-6)
I've been advised to do daily 1/3 water changes. Ammonia and nitrates spike by the next water change. I've been advised to use beneficial bacteria. Used ,very little change. I've been advised to wait a few days between water changes. All but one of the original 6 adult mollies died. I've been advised to fast my fish. Did that for four days and no noticeable nitrate drop. I've been gravel vaccing and doing normal tank maintenance throughout all this and I'm just looking for new eyes to please advise.
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2023.05.30 02:37 Sweathog1016 Too many fish?

We did a total rebuild of our pond in 2020. At the time we had three koi (sadly we had one that escaped the holding tank at night) that survived the rebuild. We added four to our stock. All good for our 700 gallon pond. Then they decided they liked their new home so much, they had a fish orgy to celebrate. Not to worry we were told. Since it’s just rock at the time and brand new, the eggs wouldn’t survive. Well, four or five hearty fish did survive and now we have 11 or 12 koi in a 700 gallon pond. It’s staying clean and we keep the water circulating. They winter under the ice with just a heater keeping a hole in it.
A couple beauties too. A silver one with black spots. Nothing like the parents. An orange, black, and white that’s quite colorful.
As long as it’s staying clean, no worries? Is their growth somewhat restricted by environment and climate? The biggest are six years old and I don’t think any are over 14 inches. Will they continue to grow?
submitted by Sweathog1016 to ponds [link] [comments]

2023.05.30 01:54 kinkaccountduh This post lasted less than 2 min in the r/Alberta echo chamber. So Fuck it I made my own spot for the 50+ percent of us who actually believe in democracy and debate. Post without fear of reprisal here friends!

I was a life long supporter of the NDP since before I could even vote. My mom and I campaigned for Notleys previous election win and I couldn't have been more ecstatic. I was a "hard core lefty" who considered themselves willing to do anything to see the "retarded God loving bigots" of tje right get crushed and have their "stupidity" constantly shown for me to ridicule and generally shit on in anyway possible.
There was a time I would have argued (and perhaps even considered) Danielle Smith to be at best a deluded ignorant imbecile who should have likely been in jail not the premiers office.
What a difference a few years makes?
I will NEVER vote for a party who is so obsessed with hypersexualization of our ELEMENTARY aged school kids. I literally have a GAY teacher friend who retired over what's going on in classrooms today. These teachers have seemed to have forgotten that they are there to teach NOT INDOCTRINATE innocent and confused little kids who would do whatever or say whatever to make adults around them happy.
School is about teaching kids to make an educated and informed decision about these topics WHEN THEY ARE READY. Here's an idea: let's take puberty (the most confusing of times for kids already) and totally just make that one billion times more difficult and confusing for them. I'm sure your pronouns and propaganda is making that infinitely more clear and understandable for these poor kids.
BUT TO ACTIVELY AS AN educational facility work to lie to parents, keep them out of the know and actively not consult or even be TRUTHFUL with students parents is beyond words for me.
THESE. PEOPLE. NEED. TO. GO. TO. PRISON. Until a child is 18 they literally have no rights that do not need to be discussed with the guardians of that child period. Christ we couldn't go swimming or on a field trip without parental consent in the 90s.
Not to mention some of the literature being introduced into our ELEMENTARY school libraries. I've had the displeasure of actually re reviewing it myself it is PEDOPHILIA. Plain and simple. One "book" I saw was literally about how an older adult was grooming/training a 13-14 year old child on how to give blowjobs and handjobs, but even worse really tried to normalize this grooming behavior as being okay.
THIS IS PEDOPHILIA. THIS IS CRIMINALLY MISLEADING PARENTS. What if the internal struggle is so intense that the child acts violently towards themselves or others? God people should sue every person involved into oblivion.
So I'll admit I have no idea of the number of trans kids on average k-6. What I do know is that before these pedophile obsessed "teachers" were around back in my day there were a whopping ZERO.
Every sick twisted regime with generations of death and destruction associated with them always followed two strategies:
1: Go after the children. They will repeat and parrot the most aweful things and then go on to repeat them. Hitler, Stalin.and dozens of others new this and exploited it. Within a generation you're ready to purge the "anti revolutionaries" (people old and wise enough to see the insanity for what it is) to make room for the most virulent, brainwashed and completely committed to the cause who are of course fresh from years of unfettered indoctrination, some of whom EVEN RATTED OUT THEIR OWN FAMILIES!
2: Argue that any "unpleasantness" or trampling of our charter rights for example, is for "THE GREATER GOOD". The worst atrocities and genocides ever carried out in human history have been "for the greater good". WHEN YOU HEAR THIS BECOME EXTREMELY SUSPICIOUS AND ON GUARD. Ffs in the cultural revolution of the 60s Mau literally had the population of china convinced that it was the sparrows eating the tiny grain off the crops that were responsible for the famine that killed 10s of millions.
His solution: get the citizens to chase these poor birds around banging pots and pans until the.birds literally died of exhaustion. )Think of the calories it takes to do that? THATS WHERE THIS LEADS PEOPLE. INSANE LEADERS MAKE FOR INSANE TIMES.
Notley can take her masks, her media pysop (remember when on one day the front page of the sun tried to turn a 13 year old childs death from cancer in "COVID death" right beside the picture of the ICU units full of patients (CPR dummies)?!?
The masks were fake. The disease was fake. The infringement of our charter rights was fake. Guess why every parliament building has a big open courtyard etc? BECAUSE THAT'S OUR SPACE TO BE USED FOR PEACEFUL GATHERING AND DISSENT.
Just remember 50 percent of us feel this way but can't say anything or it's a hate crime. White? Terrorist. Christian? Extremist.
Last thing I'll say is people need to toughen up. Sticks and stones man ffs. Someone mis gendering you isn't a hate crime. It's not GENOCODE (my personal favorite). Someone calls you something you don't like knock them out. Name call them back. So anything but cry about it 24 hrs after on reddit like some kind of political badass. You cant censor this away. Just because, God forbid, we make it a crime to hurt someone's feelings, doesn't make those "racists" suddenly see the light and instantly have a change of heart.
Words matter. Orwell was VERY SPECIFIC about this and we literally walked right down the INGSOC road. Pathetic.
Anyone who's been to jail knows people organized by culture and race. Always have always will. But just because I hate onions doesn't mean I think the very idea of onions should be declared"thought crime" and that every onion,along with those who enjoy them, should be eradicated.
Danielle Smith is the only one telling the truth about what's happening. She's always in hot water for some comment she's said like "the unvaccinated were the most discriminated group of people since perhaps the Japanese in WW2. I couldn't go anywhere. Use public services I PAY FOR, and I lost my job.
Conspiracy theorist I was called. Conspiracy theories have sure become conspiracy fact though huh? We were right all along.and will continue to be so.
submitted by kinkaccountduh to UncensoredEdmonton [link] [comments]

2023.05.30 01:05 Eden_Forth Thinking About Trying 75Hard?

Fair warning, this post is a massive experience dump essay aimed at people considering the challenge. But I hope to see some current participants comment too!
TLDR: 75Hard tested and improved my sense of commitment to my personal goals and wellbeing, improved my confidence and helped me develop mental fortitude beyond what I thought possible, however I am NEVER doing this again. Do a cost benefit analysis FOR YOURSELF, determine your WHY, and then, if everything checks out, DO IT!
First off, stats: Day 69, down 24lbs from SW of 314, 26 yr old female
Now, I’m NOT posting this to spread negativity, but to let everyone who’s considering this know the reality of this challenge beyond the glitz and glamor and clout that comes with it. Make no mistake, there IS a kind of social approval that you encounter when you eventually tell people you’re doing 75Hard (and inevitably must explain what it is). People are impressed, and the closer you get to day 75, the better the optics. I’m not encouraging anyone to become a braggard, I’m just telling the truth about the sociology of it all. I advise you to use that as an additional accountability measure and turn the attention into a source of positive pressure. There were many test days where just the idea of having the people in my life that are ‘in the know’ see me fail pushed me to finish.
When Andy said 75Hard would start off hard, get easy, and then get hard again, he was truly telling the truth. That’s exactly what it’s like.
****Negativity incoming! If you’re not in the headspace for this, skip this section!***\*
In the beginning it was hard because it was all new and I had to restructure my life to fit in the tasks. I also was going from being a completely sedentary office manager (the most walking I ever did was to my car) to working out twice a day. It was, frankly, fresh hell the first 2 weeks or so. Then, I hit starting to ride the high of progress and achievement and it got easy and even a little bit fun competing with myself daily. Now, I’m almost done and the high has died, the sense of achievement has gotten old, and I feel like the days are dragging on and I’m just completing tasks to say I finished them. Around Day 50 I sort of stopped noticing any significant mental growth and I stopped feeling like the tasks were meaningful. This is important for anyone considering 75Hard to know because the second time it ‘gets hard again’ it may not be because of physical strain or even life circumstances. In the end, it might be because it feels like you’ve gained all you can and now you’ve plateaued, but you’re stuck just mindlessly completing tasks made up by someone you’ve never met and probably never will meet, with whom you have no actual connection. Past the elation of pushing your mental barriers and taking your physicality to the next level, there’s a kind of absurdity that sets in that you only escape by focusing on your pride and desire to reach Day 75 and say “I did it!” In some ways, the latter days’ drudgery may be a problem of the mind that you can ONLY escape via your mind. 75Hard is indeed an ironic challenge!
That’s not to say that there aren’t physical issues too, even in the later days. Drinking a gallon of water hasn’t really gotten easier, although it’s nice to have the assurance from my body that I DON’T need that much water daily (even on hot days where I do 2 cardio workouts outside). That much water also crowds out your ability to drink other fluids oftentimes, which is a pain if you’re sick or menstruating and need to lean heavily on teas. 2-a-days have been a nightmare (although that kind of is the point) not just in terms of laundry, but also on my body. You’re LITERALLY unable to take a rest day during this challenge. The closest you’ll get is 2 sessions of yoga a day, but yoga is still WORK, even when you keep it gentle. And in my case, I have somehow acquired a minor ankle injury in the last two weeks, and since we don’t get rest days, my only choices are to stop the challenge or keep going. (And WHY would I stop at day 60!) Then there’s the added hormonal fluctuations you’ll have to endure during the challenge if you’re a woman, some of which are standard, and some of which will be quite literally brought on by the increase in physical activity. Ladies, be warned.
BUT, it’s not all bad, would-be 75Harders!
****Positivity incoming!***\*
I’m blown away by how much insight I’ve gotten into myself and how my brain works as well as how my physical stamina has increased in such a short amount of time. It’s proved to me how little time is actually needed to make substantial progress toward a goal and it’s given me hope that I can reverse the damage I’ve done to my body. 75Hard has given me joy in the little things: jumping around my living room to a kpop song and pausing in amazement that I’m not wheezing and gasping for air, running on the treadmill or outside without feeling immediately winded, power walking up hills and no longer being intimidated by stairs, passing by junk food in stores and having ZERO cravings for it, recognizing the difference between a mockingbird’s call and a morning dove’s because I’ve been in nature more than ever, tackling an issue faster with an idea I got from reading. I feel so much more in tune with the rhythms of my body and have the courage to recognize mental blocks and temptations, call them out, and put in the work to move past them. All of that and more is because of 75Hard. And while I have still have a ways to go in unlearning maladaptive habits (can we get a 75Hard for finances please???), for the first time EVER, I feel certain that I’ll crush that goal, just like I’ve crushed 75Hard so far.
If you’re like me and struggle with an ED, you can also leverage 75Hard to tackle that. In my case, I was very strategic in setting my diet as something sustainable that required mindfulness but wasn’t overly restrictive. Because I have serious issues with food, I NEEDED to be careful about the diet I chose and other 75Hard participants with EDs will certainly say the same thing. In my case, I couldn’t eat anything ultra-processed, store-bought food must be as clean as possible (nearly or totally preservative free) and could contain no more than 5g of added sugar, no desserts unless I made them myself, and I could eat out but NEVER at a fast-food restaurant. I also restricted fried chicken specifically, because it’s a problem food for me! Choose whatever you want, but PLEASE make sure it’s sustainable, and if possible, craft your diet with the help of a therapist that already knows about your ED.
Lastly (props if you made it this far), I want to say to everyone considering this challenge that it’s something you should do for you and you alone. If someone were to ask you in the midst of the challenge ‘What’s your why?’ the crux of the answer should be YOU. YOU are your greatest reason to improve your life and strive for better for yourself. YOU are worth any and every investment in service of that cause. If 75Hard is the right course of action, then by all means start today. But give it serious thought and make sure you’re doing it for the right reasons. That’s the only way you’ll avoid failure.
submitted by Eden_Forth to 75HARD [link] [comments]

2023.05.30 00:02 Square_Opinion_4257 The 'Hot tub time Machine' & it's heater the 'Flux Capacitor'!

The 'Hot tub time Machine' & it's heater the 'Flux Capacitor'!
Hello! Hoping to get some professional advise on my redneck-mobile-wood-fired hot tub time machine project. Please let me know if I am going to blow myself up! Ok here goes...
Heating water with 4x 50' lengths of 1/2" copper pipe wrapped around the outside of the barrel and insulated with ceramic insulation. Using a PVC one way valve on the cold end and a brass one way valve on the hot end.
The concept is using a small Marine battery powered pump (1/10hp did the trick) during active heating from 0 - 40 Celsius but then allowing the heat syphon to take over for quiet, passive circulation given the heater is much lower than the mass of water. It does, infact circulate during testing last fall and I got it up to temperature. I am aware that if the water boils it will expand explosively and so I have a hot water tank's safety release valve (150PSI and/or >100C to trigger). See photos.
200ft of Type L 1/2" copper pipe = 2.42 Gallons of water. Worst case scenario - If all that water turns into steam at once will it overwhelm the pressure release valve pictured on the bottom Right of the back of the heater? Where is my weak point/ what would explode? (Cold end PVC would be my guess) Any other safety measures you could advise?
Questions and comments welcome, I am 2 years into this and friends are tired of hearing about it! ^^
I did observe a banging phenomenon at the tub where the water connects to the 2" hose (pictured) for the jets when I had the pump off for a long period. I suspect this was small amounts of water turning to steam and causing a shock wave/ water hammer. I intend to add a water hammer arrestor on the back end of the heater to prevent damage to the fiberglass tub/ jets.
Additional information: A gas powered water transfer pump will be used with a milk crate rigged to be a crude filter. This tub will be usable anywhere near a body of water where you also have firewood. The 1/10HP pump has a bypass to push through a standard hot tub filter. If chlorine/ bromine is used correctly the water may be drained safely onto grass without damaging local vegetation. Improved tub insulation and a potential pump upgrade are planned to improve heating efficiency. Estimated output is ~ 150K BTU/hr but remains to be proven. I intend to try this out ice fishing!
Will add plywood sides & cover with vinyl plankflooring.
4x 50' 1/2\" Type L copper pipe.
Wrapped in ceramic insulation with a 2nd barrel overtop.
From Right to left: 150psi/ 100C pressure release valve, Thermometer, 30psi pressure gauge & ball valve to blow out water for winterization.
Radiator hose connector to jet hoses. Active heating will use insulated hose and dump into tub directly.
1st Test in Fall 2022!
submitted by Square_Opinion_4257 to Plumbing [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 23:54 Formal_Pea9167 I Watch Paige's Week At Home Blog So You Don't Have To, I'm Serious The Vlog Is Like An Hour Long Don't Do This To Yourself

A day late but we're here, my little cheeto eaters! Remember as always to grab your bingo cards and let's get our little long weekend slumber party going. This whole fucking thing is FORTY MINUTES LONG, you're all lucky that my sibling who was supposed to spend the day chilling at my place has apparently forgotten that plan.

submitted by Formal_Pea9167 to PLSnark [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 23:44 re-re-Remix My Lemon Basil Saison

Happy with how my latest brew came out, so I figured I'd post it here to share my recipe. It's a great summer ale with a hearty kick of about 7% abv. I made this last year and had to make some substitutions this year on yeast and hops due to my LHBS availability, They've mostly been stocked with just IPA ingredients and more limited for the off-choice hops and yeast. This year I used Liberty for bittering, previously I had used Sorachi Ace. I also had to change from Omega French Saison to their Saisonstein offering. Both have been great outcomes. This saison is pretty common base recipe that I found and tweaked on what I saw the most of. Let me know what you think, or any suggestions for making this better, or more interesting.
This was made with my Anvil Foundry. lemon basil saison
8.5lb 2 Row
1.5# white wheat
0.5# Caramunich malt
0.5# flaked Oats
1z Liberty
1z Saaz
Omega Saisonstein
8z Raw Honey
1z fresh basil, muddled
2 large lemons, zested and juiced
set 6 gallons of water to 150°. Clean, zest, cut & juice 2 large lemons Mash in grains and 200g lemon peel, 1 hour mash. mash out and add water to 6.5g preboil volume
60min - 0.5z liberty hops
30min - 0.5z Saaz
20min - 0.5z liberty, 0.25z Saaz
10min - 0.25z Saaz, 8z raw honey, whirlfloc
FLAMEOUT add muddled basil, 1z lemon juice, 1z vodka, 10g lemon zest
ferment 3 weeks in regular room temp, it's a wide range of tolerance 65–78°
OG 1056
FG 1002
submitted by re-re-Remix to Homebrewing [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 23:43 dreamingofislay Feis Ile Caol Ila Day Recap (5/29)

Feis Ile Caol Ila Day Recap (5/29)
Sequel to my recaps for days one and two. It's been a wonderful Feis so far, and we feel lucky and grateful to be able to return after a five-year hiatus.
Day Three, Monday, is Caol Ila Open Day on island's eastern coast. Here are our impressions and advice, let me know if you guys find this helpful and interesting!
  • This year is the first year in a while that the open day has returned to the distillery after a multi-year renovation. The new visitor center is much bigger, sleeker, and glossier than older examples like Lagavulin's spartan bottle shop. Caol Ila's center is a Disney World-esque tribute to all things Diageo, selling many of their major single malts and special annual releases, along with a big array of Johnnie Walker products.
  • Unsurprisingly, Caol Ila day is a lot like Lagavulin day. Great, well-organized team. On arrival, they hand out a welcome packet with a pin, map, and two dram tokens per person, and everyone can choose between two whiskies for those free pours. Caol Ila offered the Distillers Edition and Moch.
  • Like at Lagavulin, the dram-token system is only lightly enforced. We came in and got two packets, then went to the main bar, and they handed me two more packets because I was holding the first two under the bar (not intentionally, I swear!). By 4 pm, team members were passing out more drams, no tokens exchanged, so the famous generosity of festival week is still here, just a little more under wraps.
  • ASOIAF/Game of Thrones fans may appreciate this reference: Caol Ila is the Pyke of Islay distilleries. Not only is it on the coast, it's on a verdant rocky cliffside, so you must take a winding wooden walkway to enter it. Caol Ila is also the most "vertical," for lack of a better word. The gift shop's on Level 3, and the main courtyard was on Level 0. On each level, there are different experience rooms, including a mini-history museum on Level 2.
  • In that history museum, we enjoyed a wonderful experience with Jo and Peter (a Diageo historian and a blending team member, respectively). It was strange; almost every other major event sold out very quickly, but this one was still available a week before we arrived, for a relatively reasonable 45 pounds/person. When we got there, only one other couple had booked it, and all of us had a great time chatting. Jo and Peter were fun company and fonts of whisky knowledge. And the four whiskies ... quite something. As a bonus, Jo and Peter gave us a to-go sample of a whisky they custom-created for the Lagavulin Malt Mill experience (the idea was to recreate the early 1900s whisky made at Lagavulin for blending). Such a kind gesture.
  • If you ever find yourself on Islay do yourself a favor and go to the Ballygrant Inn. Heck, go twice. It may be the best whisky bar on an island chock full of amazing watering holes. The selection feels infinite, and the prices are eye-poppingly reasonable. As a comparison, we had Laphroaig's 2009 and 2010 Cairdeas bottles for 8.50 pounds per pour, whereas they were 25-30 pounds per pour at a bar in Bowmore. And if you want to try rare bottles or festival bottles without the madness of Feis week, this is your spot. They have many Feis Ile expressions from the last 5-10 years.
  • Hang out at a bar long enough, and you realize some people are not here to play. Chatted with one group that was ordering powerhouse dram after powerhouse dram - Ardbeg Single Casks, 20-plus year old Bowmores and Bunnahabhains, etc. - like there was no tomorrow. One gentleman let me taste a sip of an Ardbeg single cask (70 or so pound pour). Yeah, it was pretty good.
  • SMWS (Scotch Malt Whisky Society) does great events throughout the week, and you don't have to be a member to attend or buy their bottles, unlike the rest of the year. They had a booth outside of Ballygrant today, and we got to try 5-6 expressions and ended up buying two festival bottles: a 14-year-old Macallan beauty bottled for Spirit of Speyside and a 14-year-old Caol Ila in honor of their open day, which was better (just IMO) than the official festival bottling and about half the price.
  • The vindaloo curry at Indian Tandoori/Taj Mahal in Bowmore is really spicy. Perfect hearty meal for resetting the system after a long day.
  • Fauna spotting: there are distinctive black and white seabirds with red feet all over the island, named black guillemots, but known at the distillery as "Caol Ila penguins." We also saw a swan couple that we've now spotted at Lagavulin, Bunnahabhain, Bowmore, and across the bay by Jura. Not sure if they're the same single pair of swans, but it feels like they're following us around!
We powered through quite a few drams today (lots of small sample pours, or driver's dram bottles to take home):
Caol Ila Moch - the easy entry ramp into peated single malts, but not going to be any seasoned fan's favorite.
Caol Ila Distillers Edition - Weird but super-fun scent today: chinkiang vinegar. My fellow Chinese folk will know what I'm talking about. Great with dumplings when blended with soy sauce. Maybe Caol Ila DE is a good substitute?
Caol Ila Distillery Exclusive - 2018 bottling with a red-wine finish. Nose is so different than other Caol Ilas, pure vanilla and coconut, but with the spice and tannins of a red-wine finish in the late palate.
Caol Ila Four Corners of Scotland, 14 y.o. - 2022 bottling that was made to emphasize the distillery's character. Core profile: ashy petrols and iodine on the nose, but a sweet, lemon/citrus palate, and a floral/smoke finish.
Caol Ila Feis Ile 2023, 13 y.o. - This year's festival bottling is a marriage of 10 first-fill PX and oloroso sherry casks. Was a surprising dram because most first-fill whiskies are very intensely sherried, at the cost of some balance. For this one, the distillery character won out and there might have been too little sherry influence.
Caol Ila 1996, 26 y.o. single cask - Not for sale, just for tastings like this one. This ruddy dram was so rich and unctuous it nosed like a bourbon, but the taste was all rich, old, sherry-aged, sweet-and-peat Islay goodness. An absolute stunner. My wife said cuatro leches due to the high caramel and brown sugar; I also got some pineapple juice on the finish.
SMWS 53.446, "Blowtorched Mexican Mousse," 14 y.o. - This Caol Ila is more of the classic sherry-and-peat combo, really potent and meaty, like barbecue ribs slathered with some sweet Kansas City-style sauce. Bottled for this year's Feis.
SMWS G16 Rare Release, "Dark n'Stormy Creme Brulee," 6 y.o. - This one-off whisky was a collab with Glasgow Distillery to make a Scottish bourbon-style whisky. Using a mashbill of 51+% corn, rye, and barley (sounds like bourbon, yeah?), aged in new American oak casks (bourbon, right?), this one tastes like ... a pretty delicious rye whisky to me, and a high-rye bourbon to my wife. Fascinating dram.
SMWS 24 Rare Release, "Massive Oak Extraction," 14 y.o. - Single cask, cask-strength Macallan. Burnt matchsticks nose (a common note from sherry aging), followed by a tour-de-force palate of dark, sugary fruits and baking spices. A much more muscular Macallan than any of their own bottlings.
SMWS 3 Rare Release, "The Finesse of a Fragrant Furnace," 18 y.o. - A strange Bowmore, so gentle and light and sweet that it read more like a Highland whisky to us. But maybe that's what happens when you're on your 4th cask strength whisky after leaving a 4-cask-strength-whisky tasting ...
SMWS 53 Rare Release, "Honeysuckle Petrichor," 14 y.o. - Another Caol Ila, which had some similar notes to the previous one, but with an ashier and "dirtier"/farmier palate. Petrichor, for sure. Depends if you want more of that rough, earthy peat, but you can't go wrong either way.
Laphroaig 2009 Cairdeas 12 y.o. - This showcases a fresh-cut fruit and light side to Laphroaig that I rarely see outside of 20-year-old-plus bottlings. Not at all the norm, but that's why I love the Cairdeas series.
Laphroaig 2010 Cairdeas Master Edition - In contrast to 2009, 2010 was straight down the fairway. Ashy, smoky, medicinal, maritime, and warming. I wish I could compare this side by side with the 2015 200th Anniversary or with 2022's Warehouse 1. It sort of falls between those two bottlings. With this dram, I've made it through the entire Cairdeas lineup!
Octomore 08.2 - Well, it's an Octomore, what is there to say? Wave after wave of peat, balanced out by salinity and an intense, tinned-fruit sweetness. After 15 minutes, got some chocolate wafer cookies on the nose.
Ardbeg Galileo - This feels like a classic Ardbeg from a bygone golden age. I wish the juice still tasted like this. It doesn't have any of the mustiness or dirtiness of some peated whiskies; it's fruity, mellow, and citric, like a barbecued fruit skewer. Not your normal 'Beg, not sure if they lowered the peat content here.
submitted by dreamingofislay to Scotch [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 23:40 Melissaldork [Sell][From US to US] Full sizes and sample perfumes - Memorial week sale, buy one full size, get one half off

PayPal goods/services. I may be out but I'll respond as soon as I'm able. $4.50 shipping. Scents are kept in a dark closet. I reuse packaging and I ship on the weekends.
Memorial Day sale through 6/2 - buy one full size, get one half off. (Equal or lower price will be the one that is 50% off)
Full sizes
Alkemia - Sandscape 5ml extrait roller Sun warmed beach sand, Atlantic ocean breezes, the saline-aquatic scent of drying sea water on skin, and the faintest hints of tanning oil and seaweed. RIS, tried once, $14
Astrid Merci 23 - 8ml oil Candied fruits and amber. Fill slightly below top of label. $15
Astrid Wicked Good 8ml oil Dulce de leche, apple, brownie, spiced woods, and warm vanilla musk. Not vegan. Tried twice, $18
BPAL Supposed to be a Pretzel 5ml Oil "… but also kinda smells like popcorn?" RIS, tried once, $18
Death and Floral - Vintage Cream Soda 5ml oil roller Classic A&W cream soda. Tried twice, $14.
Death and Floral - Black Forest Honey 5ml oil roller Blackened honey musk, deep and rich with a hint of blackstrap molasse (formulated in a skin-safe honey base). Tried a few times, $13
Haus of Gloi - Salty Sea Mist Covered Hay 5ml oil Hay accord with white musk, white amber, and salty sea air. Tried once, $14
Long Winter Farm - Fig & Forest 10ml oil roller Sweet, fruity fig and fir needle. It smells like both the first flow of sap in the spring and that first night after you put up the Christmas tree in winter. Tried once, $12
Long Winter Farm - Porridge 10 ml oil roller Just as warm and comforting as you want it to be, this one's a blend of oats, cinnamon, honey, dried figs, and sweet cream. Tried twice, $12
Osmofolia - Evening Sun 5ml oil roller Dried yellow corn husks and crisp green corn stalks, stacked hay bales, flaky cinnamon sugar pastries, fresh popcorn, and a field full of Evening Sun sunflowers. Tried twice, $14
Snowy White Owl Perfume - Breakfast in America 10ml oil roller blueberry buttermilk pancakes ladled with cinnamon butter, red maple syrup, bacon, and fresh black coffee. Tried once, $12
Themed/branded sample bags -
Alkemia sample bag - 4 samples direct from house - Lilacs Along the Winding Road, Camilla, Madam X, and Winter Sanctuary. All new, $12
Nui Cobalt sample bag 5 samples direct from house - Humbuggery, Hive Mind, Scallywag, Charlatan and Melophilia. All tested once, $15
Who is that/Where am I sample bag - interesting characters and places. Features brands Osmofolia (2), Morari, Stone and Wit, Poesie, Hex. 6 samples, $8.
submitted by Melissaldork to IndieExchange [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 23:12 Too_Much_Prego Need advice on broken water heater and mold

Need advice on broken water heater and mold
So our water heater had been vibrating our whole apartment for 5 days before the landlocked got a plumber to come. The water heater is on the first floor and we are on the second floor. Today we noticed everything was getting condensation and a light switch panel west leaking water. I took the plate off and the back was wet. I went down to look at the water heater and it was leaking steaming hot water with condensation all over and probably running up the walls. We have been smelling mildew and are worried about mold now. The socket had airflow and it smelled like mildew blowing out.
I attached pics.
Should I be worried about mold? What can I do to fix this?
Tl;Dr: water heater was leaking steaming hot water for 5 days. Worried about mold in walls.
submitted by Too_Much_Prego to Plumbing [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 22:52 Beautiful_Dress_8628 I got engaged last night! 🥺♥️ Sharing the news on Reddit first 🥰

I got engaged last night! 🥺♥️ Sharing the news on Reddit first 🥰 submitted by Beautiful_Dress_8628 to EngagementRings [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 22:31 Seibseibo Yellow Tinge and Red Particles - HOT water only

Hi all. Looking for some advice on my water heater.
We are on a well at our place and water is treated through an iron filter and water softener and is then fed to the rest of the house including the water heater. All water coming from cold taps is clear and I took samples to get tested from non treated and treated taps, which showed the iron filter and softener removing iron and providing soft water. The hot taps at all locations are producing water with a yellow tinge and red particles sinking to the bottom of sinks/tubs when hot water is run.
I have attempted to flush to hot water tank multiple times now with no luck getting the water to clear up regardless of how long I flush and how much water I use. As soon as I flush with cold water in the tank it stirs up more rust(?) and continues to flow out the drain valve without ever running clear. The yellow tinge will get a bit better after that for a couple of days but does not last long. the Water heater is just under 3 years old and has a powered anode rod due to problems we were having with off-gassing and air in the hot water lines when we first moved in. The LED is green for the powered rod so I'm assuming it is working as intended but really have no way to tell.
At this point I have booked a company to come in and replace the water heater on Thursday this week as I feel like I have narrowed it down to that being the issue. I'm guessing the inside of the tank is rusted and no amount of flushing is going to fix it. Again this is only a hot water issue, the cold is clear as day with no particles but the hot has this problem. Just wanted to see if there were any other ideas before I have the tank replaced.
Water heater is a Gas AO Smith 50 gallon
Corro-Protec powered anode
submitted by Seibseibo to Plumbing [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 22:27 FruitBatFanatic What's this bump on my betta?? :(

My betta, Obie has been sick for about a week. Five days ago I moved him into a separate tank to start treating him. He was previously in a divided 40 gallon with one other betta (no symptoms) and two snails.
He's currently in a heavily planted 7.5 gallon tank. The heater is set to 78F, it is filtered. I am dosing the tank with Prime every other day, with beneficial bacteria daily, as it's not yet cycled.
I am 3 days into a 5 day treatment of LifeGuard, but I haven't seen any improvements. I am not supposed to do water changes during this time.
Right now, Obie has this bump on his back, and he's lethargic. He isn't eager to eat and will eat only about once a day (instead of 2).
Please please help. I love this little guy so much. I live in Canada, so getting meds is difficult. Should I add salt to the tank? Are there different meds I should try to find? Can anyone diagnose this?
Thank you so so much.
submitted by FruitBatFanatic to bettafish [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 21:43 xXAdventXx Advent's Amazing Advice: A Most Potent Brew, A one-shot fully prepped and ready to go!

Welcome back to Advent's Amazing Advice! The series where I take popular One-Shots, Adventures, Campaigns, etc. and fully prep them for both New and Busy DMs. This prep includes music, ambiance, encounter sheets, handouts, battle maps, tweaks, and more so you can run the best sessions possible with the least stress possible!
The Genius Creator of A Wild Sheep Chase, The Wolves of Welton, and To The End of Time is back at it again with another amazing One-Shot! A Most Potent Brew brings together a group of rookie adventurers on a classic adventure; clearing out a cellar from some rats. Things take an unexpected turn though and lead them to their first dungeon! This level-one adventure will take your players into the depths of a brewery, that turns out to be connected to an abandoned mage towers basement. Will your players survive their first adventure slaying giant rats, centipedes, and more?
Coming in at approximately 2 hours of play, this is the perfect one shot to show new players what D&D is all about, without overwhelming them with a 6hr+ sessions!
Thanks to this One-Shot's popularity, countless maps have been made. I took the time to collect the best ones that I could find. My notes currently work best for the original map and Alternate Maps 2 and 4; however if you would like me to adjust the notes to be able to run smoother with the other maps, please let me know in the comments below! If enough people are interested, I'll begin work on those immediately!
\Average Session Length: 1.5 - 2hrs*
Without further ado:
Included in The AAA Collection is:
Other Fully Prepped One-Shots, Adventures, and More:
As always, If you see something you think I can improve, add, change, etc. please let me know. I want this to be an amazing resource for all DMs and plan to keep it constantly updated! If you'd like to support me, shape future releases, and get content early feel free to check out my Patreon!
P.S. I just unlocked Yearly Subscriptions! If you'd like to unlock every piece of content I've ever released, get 2 months free, and receive exclusive Annual Member fully prepped One-Shots check this post out!
P.P.S. I've just started releasing my prep work for The next Mini-Campaign Dragons of Stormwreck Isle; by the end of the month, The Lost Mine of Phandelver will be moving from The Adventurer Tier to The Hero Tier on my Patreon. If you're looking to save money and would like to support me, consider subscribing now to receive the entire Lost Mine of Phandelver Prep!
Cheers, Advent
As required by the subreddit here's the text; however, I highly recommend either using the google doc link or the Word doc in order to get the most up-to-date and properly formatted version including color coding! (Reddit is really weird with formatting and ruins it at certain points) Not only that, but you'll be able to leave comments right next to specific spots and I'll be able to easily update it!
P.S. As of about a month ago I'm no longer able to simply copy and paste my google doc into Reddit with all the formatting included. I have no idea why this has happened, if anyone has any advice please let me know. In the meantime click here for the fully formatted text.
A Most Potent Brew
A Level 1 Adventure
Play Tavern Ambiance
As you all enjoy a pint of ale with your new found companions, you realize that none of you have properly introduced yourselves just yet.
Why don’t you each describe your characters
Perception Check (Highest Roll)
As you finish up chatting, you see the Bartender head over to the notice board and nail in a new flier
Upon taking a closer look at the flier, it reads: In need of those well-trained with a weapon to exterminate exceedingly large vermin, speak with Glowkindle at the Wizards’ Tower Brewery. 100gp reward (25gp per party member)
If players ask for directions
Persuasion Check DC 10
Advantage if they offer a drink
The Wizards Tower Brewery, oh that’s simple it’s a couple of miles out of town, just follow the dirt road and you’ll pass right by it.
Play Travel Ambiance
You follow the directions you’ve been given, trudging maybe a mile or two out of town along an old dirt road that winds its way up a low hill. As you near the top, a large stone building comes into view, flanked by a couple of barns. By the door is a brightly painted sign that reads ‘The Wizard’s Tower Brewing Co. For the Freshest Pint in the Realm!’
If Players walk right in (Play Alternate Tavern Ambiance)
You enter a building infused with the smell of hops and beer. It’s extremely clean and well-organized. A few humans and Halflings, dressed in white shirts and tight black trousers held up with green suspenders wander about, checking on barrels and vats of bubbling liquid with no sense of urgency.
A fairly young looking Gnome, who sports an impressive beard looks over to you.
GlowKindle: Yes, yes how may I help you? We’re not currently running tours right now.
After a moment of confusion you can see his face turn to a smile.
All those weapons are quite lovely, you don’t happen to be adventurers who saw my job posting do you?
Perfect! Well my name is Glowkindle, why don’t you come in and join me for a drink and I’ll explain everything!
If Players knock
As you knock on the door and wait a few moments, it’s eventually answered by a fairly young looking Gnome, who sports an impressive beard, as well as a white shirt and tight black trousers held up with green suspenders.
GlowKindle: Yes, yes how may I help you? We’re not currently running tours right now.
After a moment of confusion you can see his face turn to a smile.
All those weapons are quite lovely, you don’t happen to be adventurers who saw my job posting do you?
As you follow Glowkindle, you enter a building infused with the smell of hops and beer. It’s extremely clean and well-organized. A few humans and Halflings, dressed much like their boss wander about, checking on barrels and vats of bubbling liquid with no sense of urgency.
(Play Alternate Tavern Ambiance)
You continue your way to a small bar set up in the corner of the brewery where he offers you all a seat and begins to pour drinks for each of you
This is our Tashalar Pale Ale, it’s a nice hoppy summer ale. I hope you enjoy it.
Now onto business. I suppose I should start when this all began. We’ve been doing fairly well for ourselves and were looking to expand our operations. In order to do this, we first needed to expand their beer cellar.
We had some workmen down there, digging out some extra room, when they uncovered an old wall. As far as we could tell it may have been a remnant of some long-forgotten ruin.
Curious, we knocked a hole in the wall, only to be attacked by black rats the size of dogs! Big dogs too, not poodles, you know? Which emerged from the darkness on the other side.
We all managed to escape with nothing worse than a few cuts and bruises, but the cellars are completely unusable. If we have any hope of getting production starting again, we need the giant rat infestation dealt with.
Now that’s where you all come in. I’m not sure where the rats came from, but the brewery took its name from the old Wizard’s Tower that used to be on the site, so it may be something to do with that.
If you find out where they came from, take care of the infestation and make sure we won’t have any surprises like this in the future, I’d be willing to pay each of you 25gp
Players agree
I can’t thank you enough, follow me to the cellars.
Glowkindle leads you to a hatch in the floor of the main brewing area. Lifts it up and peers into the darkness below.
Play Dungeon Ambiance
Beer Cellar
The wooden stairs creak as you descend into the cool, dry air of the cellar, which is infused with the smell of beer and damp fur. Somewhere in the darkness you hear the scrabbling sound of claws on floorboards and a faint squeaking noise.
If players have darkvision or shine light
It’s difficult to make out the entire area at once, the floor is taken up by barrels and casks of beer. The only clear area is towards the far side of the cellar, which has a dirt floor littered with stones and workman’s tools.
You’re actually able to just make out make out the hole in the wall mentioned by Glowkindle as well
Enemies (Play Combat Music 1)
8 x Giant Rats
DC 10 Perception to spot or surprise round
After 5 die the rest will flee
As you tear down yet another vermin, you watch as the rest flee in fear through the hole in the wall…only to be greeted with screeches of pain moments later, followed by complete silence.
Mosaic Corridor
Through the hole in the wall you can see a dusty stone corridor, its floor lying around a foot below that of the cellar where you stand. Over to the left you can see the start of a staircase buried in collapsed masonry, earth and rubble that block the way completely. To the right the passage heads around a corner, but on the wall you can just make out what appears to be writing in a clear gold script.
When player asks about writing
As you make your way to the gold script you can see that the passageway continues to the left and ends with two doorways, one heading left and the other straight on. In front of you is a 20 ft. section of floor covered in a mosaic that depicts a rural scene. It shows the sun, the sky, a hillside, and a river. Each showing the scene at a different time of day. You also notice that two halves of a Giant Rat seemingly cut by a giant blade lie on the river section of the second panel.
The writing on the wall is engraved in a golden script that appears to be shining slightly, even in complete darkness. It’s written in Common and reads:
"Dawn breaks with stirring air, As sun shines down on new day fair
Answer = Air (Sky)
"Midday blaze bakes earth and grass, The farmer waits for heat to pass
Answer = Earth (Hill)
"Evening cool brings water, wine, Drink and laughter passing time
Answer = Water (River)
"Night sees shining, roaring fire, as wood and coals burn on the pyre"
Answer = Fire (Fire)
Players must stand on correct portion of each tile in order to not activate trap
DC 12 Dex Save or
1d10 Slashing damage
Activates each time player steps on wrong panel
Well Room
In the center of the small room ahead of you is a large stone well, topped with a wooden handle and the rotten remnants of a heavily frayed rope that descends into the shaft. In the far right corner, the ceiling has collapsed slightly, and a narrow shaft of weak sunlight shines through a narrow hole. To the far left is a plain wooden table, crusted with dirt and dust and laden with old plates, buckets and other strange pieces of tableware.
DC 12 Perception
You’re able to find that several of the old plates on the tables are made from tarnished silver.
Set of Silver plates – 50gp
If Players aren’t stealthing
3 x Giant Centipedes (Play Combat Music 2)
As you make your way through the room looking about, you begin to hear a scuttling sound from inside the well. In a flash the wood covering the well shatters. The first thing you see is antennas moving frantically from side to side, followed by a massive pincer-like mouth. As it exits you count 2, 4, 6, 10, 20, 50, 100 plus legs skittering all about, excitedly looking for its next meal and these 3 giant centipedes are quite sure they’ve found it.
Will attempt to knock player unconscious and drag them into the well
Well is 50ft deep, with 10ft of water that will break fall
The Lab
The door opens onto what might once have been a lab or workroom. To your left sits a moldering desk and the shattered remnants of alchemical glassware, while the center of the room is dominated by a set of tall bookcases arranged back-to-back. All around, however, are scorch marks and signs of countless small fires. The air is filled with the smell of smoke and burned meat. The wooden furniture is blackened and burned in places, while what may once have been a pile of books has been reduced to ash. Singed traces of what may be webbing hang from the ceiling. As you enter you feel something crunch beneath your feet - glancing down, you realize that it’s the charred hindquarters of a Giant Rat.
1 x Giant Inferno Spider(Adv on Stealth vs player perception) (Play Boss Music)
As you peer around attempting to find what could have caused all this damage, you begin to hear a scuttling sound just above you. You feel something drip on you and burn your skin. You look up to see what and as you do the entirety of the ceiling begins to glow, no…not the ceiling, the creature itself. What appears to be magma like blood courses through its veins of this 8 legged abomination that’s latched onto the ceiling. The tip of its abdomen glows brighter and brighter as it releases an onslaught of burning webs at you.
Roll for initiative
As you lay your final blow into this creature it lets out a screeching hiss, you’re unsure if it comes from the creature's pain or the steam escaping its body. Its legs slowly curl in on itself and all that’s left is the lifeless carcass of this mutated arachnid.
DC 12 Perception Check
Taking a look around you can see that most of the books and equipment are charred and falling apart rendering them completely unusable. However; there is one thing that stands out. A single book atop the bookshelf appears to be completely undamaged.
Contains: Detect Magic, Identify, and Arcane Lock
The rear wall of this small room is lined with sturdy-looking wooden shelves. Clearly these were once laden with bottles and glass vials, but over the years many of these have been reduced to glittering shards of glass on the floor. There’s a flicker of movement among the wreckage and you see a small black rat lapping up the last remnants of liquid left in the shattered remains of a dark blue bottle.
Perception check
Taking a closer look at the broken bottle that the rat is drinking from you notice that it has the torn remains of a white label affixed to it. The writing on it reads ‘-tion of enlargement’.
After one minute rat will turn into a Giant Rat and attack
Giant Rat x 1 (Play Battle Music 4)
You’re also able to find another smashed and empty bottle on the floor with a partial label reading ‘Essence of Fire Ele-’.
Lastly upon looking at the shelves you notice that a few bottles are still fully intact. There’s 3 bottles, each with different colors. One Red, One a clear liquid and finally one containing a greenish liquid.
Potion of Healing
Potion of Invisibility
Potion of Vitality
As you make your way back, following the reverse order on the mosaic tile trap and finally reaching the exit to the cellar, you see the bearded gnome pacing back and forth anxiously. Upon seeing your faces, his eyes immediately light up!
Play Tavern Ambiance
You’ve made it back I see, I heard so much noise down there. I’m so glad you’re all in one piece! Please, please, tell me what you found out. Here follow me I’ll have one of my workers grab us another round of drinks!
Questions he’ll ask if players take a while to recount things or are unsure what to say.
Were you able to clear out all of the vermin?
Do you have any idea what made them so large
Where did the tunnel lead you all?
Thank you all so much for your help, this is truly a day to celebrate! Not only is the cellar cleared, but there’s entire rooms that can be dedicated to storage down there. We’ll be able to expand and become the largest brewery on the Sword Coast!
As promised, here's your reward of 25gp each, I added a little bit extra for your trouble (35gp ea). Also any time you have the urge to wet your whistle feel free to drop on by. With what you were able to accomplish here today, I can tell you have a bright future as adventurers and I’d love to hear those stories!
With your first successful adventure, you all exit the brewery, excited for all that the future may hold. Will you continue on together and make a name for yourselves or was the constant threat of death, dismemberment and nearly being eaten a bit too much for some of you. Only time will tell, but those stories are for another time. For now you head back home a tad bit richer, slightly worse for wear, but with an experience you’ll never forget.
And that is where we’ll end tonight’s session!
Special Thanks
And to all my Patrons!
Without your support, none of this would be possible! Thank you so much!!!
submitted by xXAdventXx to DnDBehindTheScreen [link] [comments]

2023.05.29 21:40 bimbo_wannabe_ [I Accidentally Joined The Mafia In South Brooklyn] Chapter 6: On The Organizational Habits of Unrested Spirits and The Taste of Demon's Blood, Part 2.

[I Accidentally Joined The Mafia In South Brooklyn] Chapter 6: On The Organizational Habits of Unrested Spirits and The Taste of Demon's Blood, Part 2.
Previous Part: https://www.reddit.com/redditserials/comments/13ux5om/i_accidentally_joined_the_mafia_in_south_brooklyn/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=android_app&utm_name=androidcss&utm_term=1&utm_content=share_button
My nerve wavered a little.
"I don't really like the taste of blood, B."
"It doesn't taste like blood. Everybody tastes something different. Rossi says it tastes like old wine, Jimmy tastes caramel and leather, and me? To me it… tastes like gunpowder, and the way diesel smells."
I stared at the glass, then quickly tipped it into my mouth, took it down in two quick gulps, slid the mouth guard in place, at the same time sitting back against the sectional again as Becca snatched the glass from me.
It burned when it touched my tongue, and for a moment I tasted rose water and cinnamon, and in the next second, I was gone.
I've had a seizure once in my life, detoxing from heroin. The doctor said it was very rare, I was an unlucky fuck at best, but this? This was worse.
You ever seen a video of a tetanus convulsion? How the back bends, only their head and feet are touching the ground? Well, that's exactly what happened the moment the burning settled in my stomach. My entire body locked down, it felt like my muscles themselves would break my bones.
The pain overtook me and everything went black, but I soon realized I hadn't lost consciousness. No, I could see into the black. I was floating in it, naked. It was rolling like clouds of smoke, or a velvet curtain rippling in the breeze, and inside of the black, things were moving.
They were just as black, slimy, slithering things. Arms and legs and spider fingers and… wings, wings like bats, but no… not just black, iridescent. I saw within them blue, purple, red. They came from the darkness and spread over me like oil. Their touch was cold, but me? The burning spread all over my body. I felt like I was on fire.
I came back to the apartment a moment later, tried my best to tell my body to go with it while my muscles contracted and shook. It ended just as suddenly as it began.
I felt weak, when it was over. My body hurt. I felt like I had been in a car crash. But oddly enough, some parts of me didn't hurt anymore.
My limbs felt like lead as I removed the guard, but I found the strength to reach down and lift the leg of my pants. The old surgery scars on my knee were gone. The pain I had been living with for the last nineteen years was completely and suddenly absent.
My arms shook as I let go of my pants leg. I couldn't find the strength to lower it back to my ankle. I touched my nose as gingerly as I could with my hand jerking. It still hurt just as badly as it had before, but the ring finger on my left hand? It was bending again.
"Did it work?" I asked. Becca removed a few bits of ephemera from a mirrored tray on the coffee table, and raised it before my face.
My skin was no longer swollen and bruised, my nose still bloody but no longer dripping. Beneath my fingers, the bone felt whole again. It wasn't the only thing that had changed. The creases in my forehead, the crow's feet at the corner of my eyes, the smile and frown lines around my mouth, they were all gone. My skin was as smooth as though I was a teenager again.
My eyes were brighter, somehow. I had always gotten quite a lot of compliments on my green eyes, didn't think it was arrogant to recognize what others had told me, but they were different now, somehow paler yet deeper in color all at the same time. There was a new ring of yellow around the pupil that hadn't been there before. I felt with my tongue on the left side of my jaw.
The molar was back, like it had never been gone. It was different, though. Still a flat chewing surface but the edges were sharp, sharp enough that I sliced the tip of my tongue running it across the surface. I tasted blood for a moment before the cut was suddenly whole again.
I flexed my fingers experimentally, found the tremors were easing with every passing second and a flush was spreading across my body, both hot and cold all at once. Strength flooded my muscles, my mind was as clear as a bell, but despite all of that, I still felt a consuming weakness and exhaustion inside.
I'd gotten stuck for two shifts at the grocery store once, then had a call out on the stock crew and had stayed for four hours to help them. I had worked a total of twenty hours that day, and this… felt exactly like that, exhausted and as wired as a methhead on a three day bender all at the same time. Simultaneously bone-tired and hurting but feeling like I was bulletproof.
Becca was watching me with a sad grin.
"Hell of a ride, huh?"
I jerked my head in a nod, found I had to adjust the amount of force I put behind it because I was moving quicker than I had before.
"You know, I can see why Jimmy likes it… and Rocco doesn't."
"Rossi, well, how do I put this? He likes to stay in control, but he isn't a control freak. He barely even drinks… but Jimmy… he's less concerned about controlling himself and more concerned about controlling everyone else."
Becca stood then, removed some alcohol wipes and a tourniquet from the tackle box, turning on the blood warmer. She hooked the first of the bags to the IV line and sat again, opening the wipe but not removing it yet. She tied the tourniquet around her arm, or, tried to. She was struggling with it.
"You need some help with that?"
She looked at me for a moment before she nodded.
"Yeah, actually."
I took the tourniquet from her, moving before her and sitting on the coffee table.
"You know, as many years as I've been doing this, I still suck at it. Can't find a fucking vein for a goddamned hour at a time, blow them out everytime I turn around."
I made a sound of acknowledgment as I tied the tourniquet tight around her arm. I felt with my fingers, but wasn't having much luck. A slap with the back of my hand in the dip of her elbow didn't do much more to distend the veins. The back of her hand was equally lacking in usable veins.
"There's one thing about it, kid, you would have made a terrible junkie, you got shit for veins."
She made a sound of frustration and tried to pull her arm away from me.
"See, I told you."
"Uh-uh, hold on. You can launder money in your sleep, but me? I can find a vein with my eyes closed."
I felt farther up onto her forearm, then tried the back of it. I finally had luck, pressed the vein a few times to get it to stand up farther.
"See, you got a good one right there."
I wiped over it with the alcohol, grabbed the hypodermic and glanced up to her face. She had her eyes squeezed shut.
"On three."
She nodded, and I counted down, slid the needle in, then pressed the snap to leave only the cannula inside the vein, taped it down, then removed the tourniquet.
"All done."
I opened the tubing to allow the blood to start traveling down, and adjusted the flow regulator just a bit.
She stared at me for a long moment.
"You're really good at that. You ever considered going to school? You'd make a hell of a phlebotomist."
I snorted lightly.
"I can see all kind of doctors in my future just itching to hire a felon into their office."
"You could go work with Farid down at the free clinic. He runs the place, you know Muslims love doing charity work. They don't pay amazing, nonprofit and all, but he honestly don't give a shit who works there as long as you know what you're doing."
I hummed quietly. As I watched, the color drained from her face, going from white, straight to gray. She winced, and sat back against the couch stiffly.
"It hurts when it goes in the vein?" I asked the obvious.
She nodded.
"Burns like I shot up acid. Never gets any easier, but at least I don't get an in-game tutorial on a Grand Mal seizure, so… small blessings."
"You want a drink or something, B? A snack?"
She laughed weakly.
"Yeah. Give me a water and some oreos. They're in the cabinet over the stove."
I followed her directions and brought the bottle of water and a saucer of the cookies to her. She pulled one knee up, her bare foot balanced on the edge of the couch cushion and set the saucer on her other thigh.
"Can I ask you something, Tony?"
"Shoot, B."
She stayed silent for a long moment.
"You know, I don't want you to think I'm hitting on you but… would you… hold me?"
I laughed quietly and sat down beside her, looping my arm around her shoulders and tucking her in close to my side. I laid her head against my shoulder, tucked under my jaw, and looped my other arm around the front of her shoulders, smoothing my hand over her hair. She wiggled against me just a bit, getting comfortable.
"No worries at all, B. I mean, I guess you and me are literally famiglia now. And no offense, you're a good looking kid but… other than the fact you're too young for me, and you're my best friend's girl, you're not exactly my type."
She snorted.
"Let me guess, the gentleman prefers blondes and older women."
That gave me a bit of a chuckle.
"I gotta say, you got me pegged again, B."
I smoothed my hand over her hair, and began humming softly and rocking gently.
"No, Non Si Speri," she said, quietly. "That's funny, that's Ma's favorite song."
I laughed. Goddamned patterns…
"Mine, too, Miss Rebecca, mine, too."
She tried her best to relax against me, but I could feel every time she stiffened and winced.
Time to distract her again.
"So, uh, that night, Antoni came in late, and asked you out… start from there."
She adjusted her body against mine again.
"Yeah, uh… he asked me if I was seeing anyone, and I asked him why he wanted to know, and he told me he didn't want to step on anyone's toes… so I told him he should be worried about stepping on my toes, cause he was talking to the Boss of me. And he laughed, and asked me if I could ask the Boss about the girl who worked the register, if she would be interested in having dinner and seeing a movie. It kind of caught me off guard. I had been fantasizing about that exact thing happening but I was scared. I told him if he was just fucking with me I'd have to ban him from the store, permanently. But he said no, he was serious… so I told him that we'd go out that Saturday to see this horror movie that had just come out and he could pick where we ate, cause I'd eat most anything, just not to take me anywhere fancy, cause I only dress up for Mass and his ass wasn't better than God."
"You probably should have kept that bit to yourself, B. Bet you sealed the deal for him right then and there. He'd found his girl and she was already a Catholic, didn't even have to get her to convert."
"So we… went out the next night. I worked the morning shift so I could have the night off, and I had Antoni meet me on the platform so there'd be less chance of somebody seeing. All that day at work, I started to get more and more worried. The motherfucker was literally two feet taller than me, down to the inch, but I figured that put me at a good height to suckerpunch him in his balls if he stepped out of line. I ain't exactly a slouch when it comes to self defense but when I met him that night I took my steel telescoping baton with me, just in case. I didn't have to worry. He never laid a hand on me, not once, till I touched him that way first, even if it was as simple as holding my hand, or putting his arm around me.
"I mean, the man should be up for canonization… he had patience like a fucking Saint. That… that picture, on my phone, that was the first time I ever kissed him. Six weeks I made him wait. Six weeks and him taking me out every Saturday like clock work, but he never said a word, never made a pass, just waited for me."
I could hear tears feathering into her voice again.
"That day, I made him call off work so we could spend the day at Coney Island. Made him spend two hundred damned dollars on the fairway to win me this giant blue bear, and he lugged it around the rest of the day with this stupid grin on his face, carried it home on the fucking train. Six weeks, and me spending almost every night in his bed…"
"So you two slept together before you ever 'slept together'?"
I could feel her nod, more than see it.
"At first, I just wanted to give him a hard time… you know, see just how much patience he really had… but, I felt safe with him, Tony, sleeping beside him was the safest I'd ever felt in my life. I didn't want to give up that feeling. If I had known how it would all end up, I wouldn't have made either of us wait that long… but… that day, right before we left, we went on the Wonder Wheel and… the fucking engine blew. There was this loud ass boom and this big ass cloud of smoke. I thought it was a fucking bomb, to be honest. We were stuck up there at the top for four solid hours while they tried to fix the engine, and when they finally gave up and called the fire department, we had to wait for a ladder truck to get there. So after the first thirty minutes had passed, I asked him if he wanted to make out, and he grinned at me and said… Absolutely."
She sniffed back her tears, cleared her throat and I tucked her tiny body closer against my side.
"You know, he took that picture to send to his brother. He hadn't brought his phone, so he used mine. Said Igor had been riding his ass the whole time about how I was stringing him along for the past six weeks and he was stupid enough to let me. And after that, I got a little handsy, to be honest. It was like the old saying goes, there was some Roman Hands and Russian Fingers that day. I had to put his hands where I wanted them myself, but uh… he didn't need a lot of instruction after that point. The assholes in the booth behind us kept whooping and hollering, they knew exactly what was going on but… I didn't really give a fuck. I just wanted to get a nut and give him one, too, and we had hours to kill.
"We fooled around for a few more days after that, you know, exchanged some, uh, oral instruction, if you will, but… I-I was scared to death. I didn't want to admit I'd never been with a man before, so the night I decided to go all the way, I goaded Ciech into a drinking game. Drank his ass under the table, but… Antoni, that stupid fucker… he told me no. Said I was perfectly welcome to spend another night in his bed, but if I wanted more than that, then I had to come to him sober. I was so embarrassed I cussed him like a dog, in every language I knew and he just… sat there through the whole thing, never even looked up from his book, just… asked me if I was done acting like a spoiled child. So then, I started crying cause I was so angry. And then the stupid fucker told me, 'You shouldn't cry like that, it's embarassing."
I snorted.
"Yeah, he was a bitch about that, wasn't he? Little bit of toxic masculinity to spice things up, eh?"
"So then I was doubly pissed, and I didn't talk to him for three days."
She sighed.
"Most miserable three days of my life. I couldn't eat, I couldn't sleep, it was like… every cell in my body was calling for him. I finally broke down, and begged him not to say no again… and he didn't. And, Jesus Christ, I wanted it every day after that, sometimes twice a day and… he never told me no again. It took a little while to get comfortable for the two of us, but eventually we started to share some of our proclivities with each other.
"Turned out he was a sadomasochist, just like me, so we uh, added some new activities in. We both got a kick out of the fact he could throw me around like a rag doll and fold me up like a pretzel, but, personally, I think he got a bigger kick out of the fact my little ass could actually hurt him if I really wanted to… and sometimes I wanted to. I'd have a bad day at work or school, and come home and take it out on him… and he loved every second of it."
She sighed again.
"But uh, that shit, it got us both in trouble. One night in early November, I had gotten a little rough with him. He had, you know, bruises and scratch marks and bite marks all over him. And the next day when he went to work, the heating system fucked up. It was running on high, no matter how low they put it… Antoni told me he was getting so hot his head was hurting. His Dad was up front on the counter and Toni was back there where none of the customers could see, so he thought he was safe and took his shirt off, but… his Dad came back to ask him something.
"You know, I guess from the outside looking in, it kind of looked like Antoni'd gotten a hold of somebody that didn't wanna be gotten a hold of, and apparently his Dad has very strongly held convictions when it comes to rape. So he uh… jerked Antoni's ass up, pinned him against the wall and asked him what in the hell he had done. And Antoni told me he was so damned scared that all he could think to say was, 'Don't worry, it was consensual.'"
I winced.
"Ohhh… that is…"
"Yeah, not good. So then he got his ass jumped for getting, uh, 'friendly' with somebody but not having brought me there to introduce me to the family… but, apparently he had already been planning on taking me over to Greenpoint, cause a couple of weeks before he had asked me for my measurements. Hell, I figured he wanted to buy me a catsuit to go along with the damned Dominatrix boots he bought me. He used to want me to stand on his chest, step on his hands..."
"The boot worship comment makes a lot more sense now," I muttered.
"I said continue your story." I raised my voice back to speaking.
She sat in silence for another minute. I could practically hear her frowning, but in the end she didn't push it.
"Anyway… I'd told the stupid fucker not to buy me a dress, and what did he do? Bought me a dress to meet his family in. But when I saw it, I didn't even care. It was beautiful, all these colorful, gorgeous embroidered flowers all over the skirt. There was like this flower crown that went with it, with all these ribbons hanging down. The family dinner he was planning to take me to was an informal Polish Independence Day celebration, you know, not the whole neighborhood, just the people they knew. And the dress was traditional Polish clothing. I felt so goddamned out of place wearing that thing, everybody on the train kept staring, but he was wearing funny clothes too, and this stupid little hat, so it wasn't so bad. He made me wear the damned boots with the dress, though."
Laughter burst out of me.
"And you know, his Dad's eyes got kind of big when he first saw me."
"Probably trying to figure out how you'd torn his son's ass up so bad with as tiny as you are."
"But they were nice to me, his parents and his cousins. Everybody was nice to me. And it wasn't long after that, about a month, that he asked me to marry him. I guess he was nervous too, and he got drunk hisself, and then I told him no, cause I'm a spiteful bitch. Said he was perfectly welcome to have me in his bed another night but if he wanted more, he had to come to me sober… and then I asked him where the hell the ring was, and he said he wasn't going to buy a ring if I wasn't going to say yes, and I told him I wasn't going to say yes unless I had a ring. But apparently he had bought a ring, and given it to his mother to keep."
She held her left hand up to show me. It was a 3 carat Princess cut diamond with a ring of smaller diamonds around it.
"It's a brand of lab grown diamonds, Mivoleti." She said quietly.
"Mi vole ti, 'I want you,' in Italian. Odd that."
"Yeah," she answered. "And now I can't even wear it, nobody knew we were together but his family. Come to think of it, I got no idea how I'm gonna tell Pops I'm pregnant, but, I guess at least he can't threaten to kill Antoni for deflowering his daughter, seeing as he's already dead and all."
I shook my head, squeezed her tight and pressed a kiss to her forehead.
"It's gonna be alright, Becca." I had no idea how it was going to be alright, but I had to say something. "Looks like it's time to switch bags."
We finished the transfusion some time after that. I removed the IV but didn't bother with the gauze or tape. The hole in Becca's arm sealed shut almost immediately after I pulled the cannula from the vein.
We slept. I don't remember falling asleep, but when I opened my eyes it was dark outside and the apartment was getting cold again. I tried not to wake Becca, but it was a pointless effort. She watched me bleary-eyed while I filled the heater with Kerosene again and relit it.
"What time is it?" I asked in a sleep-gravelled voice.
She turned her phone on and glanced at the screen.
"It's 8:05. You got about two hours till you go get Ma. Go get something to wear while I wash that suit, and take a quick hot shower so you don't freeze to death."
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