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Rated: E · Book · Action/Adventure · #2264475
Random Writing, Blogs and Adventures
A mix of Random writing in an attempt to organize my thoughts, storyboard ideas and conserve portfolio space in the process.
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November 17, 2022 at 11:27am
November 17, 2022 at 11:27am
Continuing with the Fairy Tale Limerick challenge from the last entry...

The following Limerick describes a Fairy Tale / Disney film. Are you able to figure out which one from the clue?

A maid who was rather petite
had glass slippers adorned on her feet.
She attended a ball
but upon midnight's call
was left making a hasty retreat.

Can you identify the Disney Film/Fairy Tale and the princess associated with it?

Note: There will be 5 rounds of this with each clue more challenging than the last... can you identify all 5? If you believe you know the answers to these once all 5 limericks are released... please e-mail them to me for a Bonus prize.

The previous clue:
"Fairy Tale Limerick 1 (Clue 1 of 5)

Also check later entries for additional clues. *Smile* Good Luck!! *4leaf*
November 15, 2022 at 1:03am
November 15, 2022 at 1:03am
I was watching a segment on NPR (National Public Radio) called "Wait wait don't tell me" where they had a game that involved limericks as clues. I also recently joined: "Fairy Tale Princess Group and their prompts helped inspire the below challenge:

The following Limerick describes a Fairy Tale / Disney film. Are you able to figure out which one from the clue?

A mermaid whose love was on land,
asked a sea witch to give her a hand.
She made the hard choice
to give up her voice
for a chance just to walk on the sand.

Can you identify the Disney Film/Fairy Tale and the princess associated with it?

There will be 5 rounds of this. Each more challenging than the last... can you identify all 5? If you believe you know the answer to this once all 5 limericks are released... please e-mail them to me for a Bonus prize.

Also check later entries for additional clues. *Smile* Good Luck!!
October 26, 2022 at 10:57pm
October 26, 2022 at 10:57pm
I received a question about my last entry asking me what Writing Roulette was. It a playful way to describe the random forms of writing that readers wind up viewing when coming to view a new entry here. So far it has been mostly journal entries with a couple of poems, reviews and short stories mixed in.

Tonight's entry is another journal though the theme knocks off one of the topics on my October writing list. I wanted to do at least one Halloween themed entry before the 31st. I was originally going to write a Werewolf themed Poem to cover that topic but as I was drafting the imagery for that poem it made me think the eerie melody of the Moonlight sonata which seemed like it deserved its own entry.

The Moonlight Sonata was written by the classic composer Beethoven. It is one of his most famous pieces of music. The slow haunting melody of the first movement is beautiful and unsettling. Because of its dark tone, it is often played in connection with Halloween

I first heard the Moonlight Sonata being played as part horror series Goosebumps. The episode it was featured in was called "Piano lessons can be murder". It fit the title and genre of the episode perfectly.

If you haven't heard the this piece played before, you can listen below. Be warned... this is one of those pieces that will stick with you forever. You won't be able to unhear it or rid it from your mind afterwards...

If you've seen my Notebook (https://www.writing.com/main/profile/notebook/kingscastle1), you'll see that I have an ongoing series of Moon Themed trinkets available and each of them has a moon related melody attached to it. Surprisingly the Moonlight Sonata hasn't featured in any of the ones I have made let. I plan to make one in the future. If anyone can recommend a good moon image that would go with it let me know. In the meantime please accept this substitute Moon Trinket for making it through this entry.

Ok everyone that is all for today. More writing to come soon. *Smile*
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October 25, 2022 at 10:38pm
October 25, 2022 at 10:38pm
Today's Chessboard writing roulette category is... drumroll please... a journal entry. ^_^; I suppose it is not really a surprise as more often than not my writing here tends to fall into that category.

Despite their frequency, it always feels like a long time has passed every time I start a new blog entry. It is hard to believe that I used to do this on a daily basis. Work has just been so busy lately that I haven't really been able to find a balance to be able to write as much as I would like. I have to credit the Writing Activity I've been participating in "I Write" for getting me to write at least a little bit regularly so far this year. There is always a bit of grimacing when I'm attempting to complete the necessary entries when a deadline surfaces but I have to admit it's gotten me to write a lot more than I would have.

Since this wound up being the first entry I posted in October... it seems like a good opportunity to regroup. I'll just go through some future entries and other writing projects that I have been Brainstorming recently just to organize my thoughts. I don't know how many of these I'll be able to complete but these are just some I would like to try.

1) Yom Kippur Journal Entry - Ideally I would have done this back to back with my earlier Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) journal entry. I started it but got pulled away from writing before I had the chance to finish it. I will go back and complete this but since it is providing information on the holiday. I have to take some more time to verify the information and trivia I am intending to share in the entry.

2) Deja Vu - I started a rough outline for a flash fiction story I want to write involving a time loop where the narrator suspects he has been doing something before and goes through a set of events which confirm it. It is still very early in development but seems like it would be fun.

3) Fantasy Bard List - Between the the Wheel of Time, The Witcher and House of the dragon. I've been watching a lot of fantasy series lately. I would love to be able to do a list showcasing some of the best fantasy bards and their music.

4) Halloween Themed Writing - With October 31st just around the corner. I want to write something Halloween related. I haven't decided what it would be yet though. Maybe either a poem or short story.

Ok everyone...that's all for now. If there are any items on this list or any other writing topic recommendations you think would be good to try just let me know.

Thank you for reading and more writing to come. *Smile*

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September 29, 2022 at 9:28pm
September 29, 2022 at 9:28pm
Ok in my last entry ("Rosh Hashanah) I briefly mentioned the upcoming Jewish holiday Yom Kippur. This entry will attempt to cover that holiday in a little bit more detail. Yom Kippur translates into the Day of Atonement. In contrast with Rosh Hashanah which is more of a celebratory holiday, Yom Kippur has a much more serious tone to it. It is designed for reflection, self evaluation and making amends for past mistakes.

Yom Kippur is the highlight of the 10 days of repentance that begins with the Jewish New Year and the final opportunity for Jewish people to repent any sins they have committed in the previous year. It is sort of a more extreme form of a New Year's resolution.

The saying goes that on Rosh Hashanah everyone's destiny for the coming year is inscribed. Yom Kippur seals that fate. However if a person shows remorse and resolves to do better in the coming year a harsher destiny could be changed. As such there are that many traditions that Jewish people take part in on Yom Kippur to show they are sorry for past mistakes. The biggest is committing to fasting during the Yom Kippur period. It is a huge undertaking as the fast runs over 24 hours. The day is also spent in Prayer and Synagogues hold services throughout the holiday.

The prayer services are divided into:

Yom Kippur Evening service - All Jewish holidays start at sunset the day before the official holiday (similar to Christmas Eve) - The Evening service contains one of the most important prayers of Yom Kippur... Kol Nidre. Kol Nidre translates into All Vows. The story behind this particular prayer is that it dates back to a period of time where Jews were forced to convert. The prayer makes it clear that vows people are forced to undertake in the coming year are not binding. Because that prayer is viewed as incredibly important... it is repeated 3 times so that latecomers to the synagogue can hear it. Even Jews who don't plan to stay for all the Yom Kippur prayer services will make an effort to attend for this segment before departing.

Shacharit - Shacharit is the Morning service. This includes a Torah reading where biblical stories are discussed. For Yom Kippur the Torah reading discusses the holiday's origin which go back after the Israelites were able to leave Egypt. The morning service also includes a sermon from the Rabbi.

Mincah - Mincah is the afternoon prayer service. Leading into Micah, the Yizkhor (Memorial prayer) is recited. Yizkhor is a prayer dedicated to family members who have passed away. It is another very important prayer that Jews who lost members of their immediate family would make an extra effort to attend. Also covered in the Afternoon services is the story of Jonah and the Whale. The story deals with a prophet who God asks to visit a village in order to get it inhabitants to turn away from evil. Ultimately the village listens to the prophet and makes amends for the things they did and God forgives them. It is one of the classic examples of how sincere repentance and changes can make a difference.

Neilah - The concluding prayer service. This is the last opportunity for Jews to make their appeal and sincerely show their regrets for the previous year. By this point everyone in the Synagogue is exhausted having fasted close to 24 hours. The concluding service is done with attendees standing upright for the bulk of the time making it all the more challenging to complete the service.

Like with Rosh Hashanah, blowing the shofar (Ram's Horn) is a part of the Yom Kippur services. This time though it is blown only once for an extended period of time to symbolize the end of the fast and the holiday itself.

Of course discussing Yom Kippur won't be complete without mentioning the typical meal involved to end the fast. The foods usually offered for a Yom Kippur feast are "Breakfast" type of foods which are easier to eat after not having eaten for an extended period of time. They include cheeses, bagels and smoked fish such as Lox, Sable, Salmon and Sturgeon. It is the perfect meal to end the holiday with and everyone taking part in the holiday looks forward to.


Thank you for reading and if you are celebrating Yom Kippur. Have an easy fast. *Smile*
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September 28, 2022 at 1:10am
September 28, 2022 at 1:10am
Rosh Hashanah (The Jewish New Year) begins this week. In honor of the holiday I'll share some Rosh Hashanah trivia:

1) The Timing - Most Jewish Holidays follow the Lunar calendar so the date of Rosh Hashanah changes every year. Rosh Hashanah itself falls on the new moon. This year the holiday falls relatively late in the year towards the end of September. Other times it usually falls at the beginning of the month. Similar to Christmas Eve... Jewish holidays begin at sunset the night before the actual holiday.

2) Two Days - Rosh Hashanah is observed on two consecutive days. The reason for this is historically observers had trouble determining when the New Moon would fall. To make sure that the holiday was celebrated during the correct time (when the new moon was present), the holiday was observed twice to cover the period of time they where not sure of. The tradition of celebrating the holiday twice continued even when people were able to better determine when the new moon would occur.

3) Shofar Blowing - Rosh Hashanah is a religious holiday so most Jews attend Synagogue (the equivalent of church) for prayer services. One of the big parts of the prayer ceremonies for Rosh Hashanah involves Shofar Blowing. The Shofar is a Ram's horn which is able to produce noise when it is blown.

There are 3 types of Shofar sounds:
Tekiah - A long uninterrupted sound
Shevarim - 3 Medium staccato like noises.
T’ruah - 9 or more short staccato noises.

Over the course of a Rosh Hashanah service the Shofar is usually sounded 100 times.

4) The 10 Days of repentance - Rosh Hashanah marks the beginning of a period known as the 10 days of repentance. During that time Jewish people reflect on sins and mistakes of the past year. This period concludes with another Jewish Holiday Yom Kippur (the day of atonement). I will try cover Yom Kippur in my next entry.

5) Taslich - Keeping with the repentance theme. One of the customs to perform on the first day of Rosh Hashanah is Taslich. This ceremony involves throwing bread crumbs or into a body of water. It is seen as a purifying ritual with bread symbolizing sins being cast away and water being used to cleanse it.

5) Apples and Honey - A popular Rosh Hashanah food is Apples dipped in Honey. It is supposed to be good luck with the honey representing sweetness. The action of dipping the apples honey symbolizes creating a sweet year.

Happy Rosh Hashanah Everyone!!
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September 3, 2022 at 12:27am
September 3, 2022 at 12:27am
In some of my other entries, I've mentioned that one of the writing activities I've been participating in this year was "I Write: Enter the Second Decade. The Activity is divided up into 3 rounds of 10 entries and Merit Badges are awarded for successfully completing a round. The third round and final round of the year started this week.

There was a 2 week break in between the rounds but it feels like that flew by very quickly. In the last round I had to do a bit of scrambling toward the end to finish. I think I wrote 8 back to back entries in one week to complete the challenge. That wild bit of dashing did not go unnoticed and was even acknowledged in the merit badge awarded:
Merit Badge in Enter the Second Decade
[Click For More Info]

Dear  [Link To User kingscastle1] 
Congratulations on finishing Writing Session Two of  [Link To Item #2263836] . These ten weeks of writing & reviewing also marked the ten year anniversary of the activity. Thank you for celebrating by participating.
Your final sprint to win was epic. 

That said back to back entries took a lot out of me. I'm hoping to space out my entries a little bit more this time around and I'm trying to post once every week. Additionally the new rules for the activity are set up in a way that last minute scrambles are impossible even if I wanted to try that again. The entries are required to be spaced out. With the new round just starting it feels a little bit like I am standing at the edge of a diving board about to take the plunge. I know it will be refreshing once I hit the water but it seems like a way down and I find myself trying to muster the energy to jump.

In other news... Writing.com is celebrating its 22nd birthday this week. I've been on this site for 15 of the 22 years. Here are a couple of tips I've learned over the years regarding the Birthday celebration...

1) Birthday Login Rewards - There is special login reward of 2200 GP per day just for logging in during Sept 1st - 7th. Just sign into your account every day this week.

2) Reviews Bonuses - Writing.com's birthday week is probably the best time of the year to do reviews. The Daily rewards are multiplied by 22 times the normal amount this year for the first week of September. Additionally all public reviews are automatically entered in daily drawings for 10,000 GP prizes.

3) Free Merit Badges - If you have a basic membership or above you can give out a Free Merit Badge every day during the Birthday week. Don't let them go to waste.

4) Party Central Rewards - Be sure to visit "Writing.Com Party Central 2023! regularly during the birthday celebration. It is updated everyday during the first week of September as with a variety of surprises. Make sure to expand all the sections for Hidden trinkets. The item also have some good recommendations for birthday activities to try.

That's all for now everyone. Best of luck with your writing!

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(Oh yes...I have a few new signature graphics I'll be showcasing. Special thanks to Legerdemain for creating these *Bigsmile*)
July 8, 2022 at 11:25pm
July 8, 2022 at 11:25pm
Warning: Though I will try to keep them relatively mild, there may be some Spoilers for the Obi-wan series in this entry.

As a science fiction fan... I like Star Wars quite a bit and have seen all the movies. However I haven't gotten the chance to watch most of the companion series yet. Most of my Disney+ watching has been going into the Marvel superhero shows and it hasn't left much time for the either the Mandalorian or the Book of Boba Fett.

The release of the Obi-wan series forced me to change that. I couldn't resist seeing Hayden Christensen and Ewan McGregor return to their respective roles of Darth Vader and Obi-wan. I am happy to report that I really enjoyed the series a lot. They cast a really good actress to play the child version of Princess Leia and it was awesome to see so many cast members from their films reprise their roles in the series. The entire cast knocked it out of the park. The series starts off very slow going but crescendos to a dramatic climax and the last two episodes are epic. They saved the best Light saber duels for the end and they were really enjoyable to watch. If you are a Star Wars fan this series is a must see. I really highly recommend it.
July 8, 2022 at 10:25pm
July 8, 2022 at 10:25pm
I briefly talked about the New York Botanical Gardens in my last entry and wound up thinking about one of the exotic flowers they showcased... the Titan Arum aka the Corpse Flower. This rare flower can grow to 7 feet in height. It takes about 7 years to bloom and its blossoms last for only 3 days. During the 3 day period, the flower opens up to reveal a bright red center.

A Picture of the Corpse Flower

The flower gets its signature name from the fact that it produces the smell of a rotting corpse to attract pollinators when it is in bloom.

Because it takes a long time to time to blossom the Bronx Botanical gardens always organizes a massive celebration whenever one of these flower comes close to blooming with a web cam streaming the entire period. It draws a huge crowd with tons of people rushing over to see (and smell) it. I attended the last Corpse Flower celebration that the garden was holding a couple of years back. You wouldn't expect a flower blossoming to be so exciting. For the record I did take the opportunity to take in its scent when I was there and yes I would describe the smell to be similar to that of dead animals. When people are encouraged to stop and smell the flowers, I doubt that this would be anyone's first choice. However, getting to inhale this Flower's aroma is a rare opportunity that a person is unlikely to forget.
July 8, 2022 at 12:40am
July 8, 2022 at 12:40am
In my last entry "The Origin of The Bronx I gave some info about some the Bronx (the part of New York City I grew up in). This entry covers some nice locations in the area.

In terms of sights, the Bronx doesn't have as many famous landmarks as other boroughs in the city such as Manhattan or Brooklyn. The big one is Yankee Stadium where the Baseball team the New York Yankees play. The current stadium they are using was actually built recently. It replaced an older Stadium that was being used close to 100 years before that (1923-2008). On days where the Yankees. The area around the stadium gets really crowded as thousands of fans come to see them play.

Another good site in the area is the Bronx Zoo. It is one of the larger zoos in the world and has a variety of animals to see. In the winter they have a festival called Holiday Lights which is a beautiful display of Christmas lights designed to look like animals you can find within the zoo.

Across the street from the Zoo is the New York Botanical Gardens. It hosts a wide variety of flowers. Visiting I recommend checking out their green house which has several areas dedicated to plants from different climates such as the rainforest and the desert.

Another smaller landmark in the Poe Cottage. This was the home of the writer Edgar Allan Poe. It is a relatively small house but still pretty nice to check out if you are a fan of his work.

The 5th sight that is heavily recommended in my area of the Bronx is Van Cortlandt park. The park is the third largest in the city as has several areas and trails for hiking and taking in nature. It also has a parade ground with with Soccer fields, a track field for running and a bike trail that leads to goes all the way from New York to Canada.

The Bronx is one the quieter areas of New York City. However it still has some nice places to visit that are definitely cool to check out. *Smile*

Author's note: Like the earlier Bronx entry, originally I started writing this as part of a challenge for "Invalid Item and didn't get a chance to finish it but wound up going back and completing it for "I Write: Enter the Second Decade.

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