Building lactose tolerance

I’ve been trying to increase my lactose tolerance over the last month. It hasn’t made me a better runner (lactate) or ruined my shirts (lactation), but it has made living in a country that serves milk/cheese/cream with or in everything easier.

Previously I wasn’t able to tolerate more than a teaspoon of milk since about 2014, but I decided having such a low tolerance was impacting my life when food in Ireland is a minefield for it. I started with a teaspoon of yogurt after dinner for two weeks. Then added milk to my tea in the same day. There were a few false starts where I exceeded the threshold and suffered (today is one of those days), but I am now having a small amount of milk over cereal on an empty stomach. Which is a big improvement!

However, I haven’t felt great – I get pretty bad gas if I over do it, even if I don’t feel sick immediately. So I would like to keep some of this lactose tolerance up rather than being at the mercy of the world.

Another concern for me is adequate calcium in my 20s – I’d eat about 80g of cheese a day, along with fortified bread and nuts. I stopped drinking nut milks in the last few months (heh). Don’t wanna end up all scrunched in my 50s and 60s. Never broken a bone jumping off stuff so assume I’m OK.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buying a house: prelude

I met with the bank about getting a mortgage to buy a house. They seem to think there’s no major roadblocks getting one with me and the woman both working:

  • Current amount of savings is good.
  • Rate of saving is good.
  • No debt.
  • Possible cash injection when my dad retires next year.

We could borrow up to 3 times our salaries, about €105k each. With that mortgage and existing money, we would have €280k to buy on a 35 year mortgage. The repayments would be about €1k a month on current interest rates at 3%APR, which is less than we’d be paying on rent in Dublin if we moved out. Also payable on one salary!

The woman is still waiting to hear if she’ll be made permanent: she is pretty unhappy in the job, but would take a permo contract if it helped getting a mortgage. There is property available in DUblin, but the market is going up 10% in some places. I know it could be 5-8 years before another property crash, and I’m not sure how willing I am to rent or live at home for all that time.

Medium term, I would like to buy a house and rent a room out while living it it. If we wished to travel the world and all that jazz, we could rent the house out for a year, then start a family. While renting a place would help pay mortgage, this isn’t an investment, it’s a place to live.

I suppose there’s a lot of emotions tied up in a decision like this: maybe for my generation buying a house is the new marriage. I’m kind of the first of my peers to start looking and planning to buy, so any stories from people who’ve been there before would be good.

 

TechnoBible

https://www.bibledesignblog.com/blog/2017/01/waterproof-bible-bardin-marsee-nkjv.html

^This is tight. I only found out about as the Falcon (aka the woman) came 5th in a short story competition, and one of the prizes is 3 notebooks from the company who makes these. I am not sure if I’d use a waterproof notebook, but a waterproof bible on crisp, tough paper sounds better. Good for a canoeing trip that’s coming up… I guess. The comments are great, you think to yourself: “who would ever need this?”, but it’s such a great use of the technology.  Might ask for one instead of a notebook.

Brief updates by section of the triangle:

Work/Skills

Passed the driving test last Friday with a single minor flaw. Very pleased to have it in the bag now. Have to upgrade my license to the real deal this week. And for 2 more years I’m a “Novice” and need to drive around with N plates up.

We got Pluralsight in work, so I can restart my CCNA study with the driving done.

Starting to look at mortgages to buy a house.

Social

Skirmish campaigns in work are going well, our terrain is mostly built, but yet to be finished. The campaign started for realz yesterday. Fun had by all.

A narrative skirmish game is starting up soon, my dudes are Byzantine Orthodox cyborgs allies of convenience to a Dionysian mystery machine cult. Think robed priests and technosatyrs.

 

Health

Back running trying to get my mile time down. Calves are less tight. Trying get the Falcon out walking multiple hours and over hills with a pack to prepare her for Alps or Alsace. Planning a 5 day canoe trip in August.

Going back to the gym tonight. IT as a career definitely has a lifting requirement and I’m losing the battle against atrophy. Probably be a x2 weekly as Celiaxx suggests.

Rode a mechanical bull for 51 seconds, which put me in the top 20%. This is way harder than it looks, and I have a renewed respect for rodeo.

get-fucked

So updates for the first time in a while:

Was in London during the attacks for a music festival (along with 24 other million people not at the festival). Had a good time, but going to places in England that are 30% European is unsettling. When your gang of friends are the only one not in Islamic dress, it brings home the demographic change that’s not hit Ireland yet. After the attacks two weeks ago, I had to convince most of the gang to come. And tried to make them security aware and buddy up. So when the attack happened, we were able to get out quickly. No freakouts. Buddy bought a dane axe after someone broke into his house while he was there, says it’ll be double as protection against Saracens. Many people are pretty paranoid about terror attacks. Hippies who were peace and love last year are swinging right on immigration from Arab and North African countries, while still being liberal on gay rights and abortion.

Still waiting on a repeat date for the driving test. Haven’t been driving much. Eyes are pretty sore again.

Might be moving into vacant family home while the will clears.

Made some nice scenery for Warhammer battles in our work league, and arranged said work league. Someone ordered ruined buildings and got double the amount by accident, so happy days. Dark Heresy games still proceeding, and got to run a few one-shots for other groups of people.

Finally wrote a working script to create users in active directory. Trying to get it to read from a CSV now.

I can top-rope and belay when climbing, but I’m deathly afraid of heights. So the bouldering and sport climbing has been a test of courage more than physical ability.

I’ve been trying to get my mile time down below 7 mins. My Achilles tendons have settled down.  Back up to 12 pullups. But the need is there to start lifting again.

 

 

 

 

 

Driving the plot

As per title. I’ve rebooked, but it was an annoying fail.

I was turning right onto a major road from a closed junction. I waited for the oncoming traffic to pass, then edged out to get a better view. There was some traffic coming in the distance, but I made the turn (too fast, in hindsight) to maintain progress and not seem hesitant.

The examiner failed me on this maneuver, as he thought it was unsafe and the oncoming traffic had right of way.  I would have passed were it not for that, as I only made 5 minor mistakes out of a potential 9. So lesson learned. I was otherwise fairly satisfied with my driving. Driving for a test is not real driving, so my second attempt should be better matched to what they expect.

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Ran a Dark Heresy game for gf and a friend on Saturday, worked very well. The flexibility of node based design showed its strengths: the players skipped the settlement to go straight for the sewers below. Also its weaknesses as they skipped 50% of the characters and encounters. This ended up working OK for the time we had to play.

I improvised and worked off the 5-room dungeon template to keep it satisfying:https://1d4chan.org/wiki/Five_Room_Dungeon.

Entrance with Guardian

The party travel on the rail to the dungeon. They are descending to the Underhive to exterminate a flesh-eating centipede and its cult. They are investigating missing children and a missing techpriest.  They have to escape a stalled railcar in the pitch-black at the end of the line. The servitor that controls the final service elevator is infected with multiple centipedes. The party has the chance to discover the nature of their foe, and tech/medical characters get a chance to shine. This also serves as a puzzle and teaches the players that there is no true AI in the setting, only biomechanical computation.

 

Roleplaying Challenge

grtwn

This got them to Growtown, once a forgotten settlement in the Underhive, but redirected sewage from the upper levels of the city has made it a thriving feudal town. It’s also awakened the Maw-Flukes, ancient man eating centipedes once worshipped as gods by degenerate humans.

The party has to find clues from the population by any of the following: relieving the town of mutant thugs, investigating the disappearance of people’s children linked to the orphanage, tracking the security systems to the sewage tunnels or providing medical aid to injured townspeople. If the players are too obvious, members of the cult or the hired thugs will try ambush them and take them to the sewers.

There are early clues about the beast’s attacks, its smell and the fact that it is being controlled psychically.

Trick or Setback

flood tunnels

The players have several ways to get to the next stage: convince a fisherman to loan a boat to investigate the sewage pipe on the lake, go through another service tunnel in the city, enter from the basement of the orphanage or be taken prisoner.

Here it becomes obvious that the sewers are full of mutant aberrations with insect features. They ambush the party with blowpipes, javelins and slings. Their weapons are tipped with the numbing poison of the centipede. While they are weak, the poison will paralyze limbs and breathing, which makes climbing and swimming lethal.

There is a further trap here: the sewer is currently blocked by a floodgate, which the mutants or the techpriestess below might open. If they are caught in the rushing waters, they will be swept to the next level below, might drown and lose all their gear. This is to escalate the situation and force the players to react with violence of action against the ambush. The rushing waters also stop players escaping if they entered by boat, or at least make it very difficult. The tunnels and tight quarters make grenades and flamethrowers dramatic. It’s a chance to exhaust their stamina and ammunition before the final confrontation.

Plotwise, the mutants are a creation of science, and worship a goddess they call “She”. They venerate a centipede uroboros necklace each wears, which has psicrystal controlling them. There are also clay jars to be found, with the missing children slowly being mutated into centipede hybrids. This triggers major fear and insanity gains. Any NPCs will go insane and try destroy the jars to give the children unpolluted deaths. This may trigger the next stage earlier than expected.

Big Climax

ziggurat

The party should then arrive at the Xenos temple. The run up to the temple should have more of the jars of gestating mutant kids. There’s also signs of a very large Maw-Fluke in the tunnels, along with all the datacables heading to one location.

The players should enter into a cave, with the stepped Mayan/Aztec pyramid in the middle. Atop is a large purple crystal which pulses with psychic energy.  Inside is the missing techpriest, one of the Daughters of Resque – a tech-heretic group who unleash mutation plagues to try evolve humanity.  The techpriest will try take people alive to experiment on them, but is otherwise quite insane. She can summon a 5m tall Maw-Fluke which causes fear, with a psicrystal embedded in the head like a unicorn horn. Destroying the crystal releases control of the beast. But it is very tough.

Reward, Revelation

The final confrontation should take place on top of the pyramid, as the techpriest attempts to summon a horde of Maw-Flukes from the Underhive with simple images: “Maw-Fluke. Guard. Pyramid.” or “Maw-Fluke. Destroy. Outsiders.” The players can re-arrange the commands in any order or substitute new ones if they feel creative. This can be done on the console or by psychic connection with the crystal. There’s a maximum of 3 words. The Techpriest herself is not a tough fight, and can easily be ganged up on. There’s an onrushing wall of Maw-Flukes climbing the pyramid while the players try to solve the puzzle.

The game has ended with the Maw-Flukes in stasis or serving the players in their quest for power. In all cases so far, the rogue techpriest has been killed. The mutant children have not been rescued or saved – they are probably too far gone for that.

 

 

 

 

Skittles SW:Ag

These are some of my Skitarii killteam for Shadow Wars: Armageddon. They are a mixture of Skitarii Vanguard guns and heads, vehicle hooks and antennae, and Catachan/Marauder bodies. The ribbed suits are from the Genestealer Cult Neophytes.

Much of the look and fluff is inspired by this: http://s3.zetaboards.com/The_Ammobunker/topic/7676229/15/ . I love his ideas and modelling, so can’t take credit for the idea of a Forge World turned feral.

The unit has “3 tiers” – full fledged warriors of the Machine God, tech-helots with low quality gear, and bionics and tech-gladiators seeking to become Skitarii. The army is pastoral Graeco-Roman themed and fights to recover their sacred past.

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The CognoScenti – Et in Teknopolis ego

They’re from the wastes of a Forge World that never was. Before the Hive, before the Rogue Traders, before even the marble columns and perfumed gardens of Kharybdis were the Priests of Mars.

The Explorator ship “Pandora’s Gift” was scouting the planet for a rich Dimantium source suitable to be the basis for a Forge World, but the initial TechnoSeed sent by the fleet suffered some unknown disaster that left the Mechanicus personnel dreaming in stasis for centuries. Faulty control-psalms released untold biomechanical horrors on the unsuspecting world, where they stalked the forests as TechnoSatyrs, feeding and building new generations of monsters: cannibal constructs and skittering swarms of servo-skulls that can reduce a man to a lacerated pile of discarded bones.

Emerging after a lightning strike reset the console, half-insane, the Explorators began their off-kilter work and laid the stones of the Mechanicus Templum. But cut off from the wider Imperium, the mission went native and blended into Graeco Praeterium’s society. Beneath the crust of the spreading facility, maintenance became ritual, history became myth, and the social structures of the Adeptus Mechanicus stagnated and atrophied. Few of the CognoScenti even remember the initial purpose of their mission as the hives above them spiralled to the stars, fuelled by the workings below the crust. But one Magos remembers.

The Shepherd was once a member of the CognoScenti until his obsession with feral mechanical lifeforms led him into self-imposed exile into the Underhive wastes between Skylla and Kharybdis, where he could be among his flock unhindered by the ritual and politics of Teknopolis. It is said that the Omnissiah’s spirit resides in all mechanical things, and through them does He show His will. Somewhere, hidden away in the memory banks of an unwitting mechanical survivor, is the secret to unleashing the self-replicating TechnoSeed that will claim Graeco Praeterium for the Mechanicus.

So it is that the Shepherd has gathered a loose warband about him so that he might continue his tasks unmolested. Any lifeforms they encounter are either tamed – if they can be – or dispatched, their memories downloaded into the Shepherd’s neural cortex before rot or implant overload corrupts the data stored in their brains.