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About KingM

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    Master of Pie

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    Northern New England
  • Interests
    Writing, Travel, Languages, Theater
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  1. By the time I hit 25, I'd graduated college, bought a rental house, got married, bought a house, and had my first kid. When pushed into it, people that age are definitely ready to be adults. When society doesn't require it, however, childhood can stretch a looong time.
  2. Why wouldn't you want to drive? The rules work just like here, and the traffic isn't all that bad in Costa Rica. The main problem is the rough road conditions in rural areas, but I'm used to that coming from Vermont. ;)
  3. I pay whatever I can by credit card for the sake of convenience. I also have automatic payments on the cards so they're paid off every month on the same date. It's handy, but you have to make sure you keep your checking account balance high enough to avoid nasty overdraft surprises.
  4. Everybody is offended by something, and even the most libertine (non-broken) people have lines they won't cross. But I think if you're super squeamish about things that most people find normal, then that would be prudish. Some people find any discussion of sex to be super uncomfortable, for example, or cannot speak of bodily waste without using something that is either super clinical or a euphemism. I would call that prudishness.
  5. I had no warning. Within ten seconds or so I was writhing in pain. Nothing I've felt is close to it. The infected abscess I had in the bone above an infected tooth was a gentle tickle in comparison. Advice like drinking water, etc., is good for preventing stones, but once you have it, it's not going to dissolve it. There are other things people suggest, but really you just have to wait for it to pass.
  6. I doubt the phone can read his mind (yet :glare: ), but yes, they track your searches, pictures, and conversations all over the place.
  7. Check all your personal info, first of all, to make sure you didn't get hacked. Barring that, did you try to access your account when you were out of the country? There's some strange reason why it thinks you're living abroad.
  8. I've never used marijuana, but I'm in favor of legalization in part to get around this pain/opioid crisis. An option that could probably help a lot of people for very little cost and little risk of overdose.
  9. I also agree with the gradual cutoff, but at least for me caffeine isn't a hard addiction. When I can't drink it, my main concern is the headache, not any sort of craving. So, first day, same number of cups, but 3/4 full. Next day, maybe half full. Next day, maybe cut out a cup, until you're completely off it by the end of the week.
  10. That is also not true. I have never once heard any band or heavy metal fan celebrate lack of good technique or expertise. Many well-known metal guitarists come from a classically trained background. Glenn Tipton of Judas Priest first learned to play classical music on the piano before he ever touched a guitar. Here is a well-known (and somewhat self-indulgent) guitar solo by Ritchie Blackmore of Rainbow. Watch this solo and ask yourself if this represents anti-expertise. How many hours do you think he spent just on this stretch of music? Gates of Babylon Solo. The claim that metal doesn't have any lyrical complexity is also misguided, although there are certainly some bands that have weak lyrics. Iron Maiden covers poetry like the Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner, historical subjects like the Charge of the Light Brigade and the frontier wars against the Native Americans. Saxon has songs about steel mills in Belfast in the 19th Century and the Crusades. Metallica sings about the plagues of Egypt. Judas Priest has an entire concept album about the life and trials of Nostradamus. Sabaton is pure home schooling gold with their historical subjects.
  11. If you don't like it, you don't like it. That's what personal taste is all about. But the above statement has no basis in reality. Here is a blog post by a classically trained singer and vocal instructor analyzing various heavy metal singers for better or worse. This is what she says about Bruce Dickinson, the lead singer of Iron Maiden. I have nothing but admiration for this singer. Listen how he starts off with a soft growl, then moves seamlessly into a well-supported, sustained high full-voice sound that then evolves into an effortless long scream! His diction is easily intelligible, regardless of the range he’s singing in or the effect he’s going for. He achieves an intensely rhythmic delivery of the lyrics without losing legato and musical momentum, something a lot of classical singers struggle with, especially when interpreting the many staccato and accent markings that crowd scores by Bellini, Donizetti, etc. A couple of observations for my classical readers: There is a visceral dramatic intensity driving this singing. Many rock and metal singers are tenors who sustain much higher, much longer than operatic tenors are ever required to. It’s not just the microphone that makes this possible. These guys are singing their guts out with incredible commitment. Intention is a very powerful thing. Notice the rasp that occasionally colors his sound. This is an effect that is totally distinct from strain – his entire larynx and throat needs to be completely loose and free to respond this way. In some of the following examples, you’ll hear singers deliberately making their voice more shallow, shrill, nasal or “harshâ€. If they know what they’re doing, they can set up all of these effects without creating resistance and strain. You can tell the difference in much the same way you would listen to a classical singer – free singing is like a massage, while entangled singing makes you sympathetically tighten up your own throat. And then she says this about Dio, who was the singer of Black Sabbath for three albums after Ozzy Osbourne left the band, and is probably my favorite singer. This is another very fine singer. His voice is so naturally resonant – he reminds me of Freddie Mercury. Like the first singer, he performs with perfect legato, clear diction, and a consistent, organic vibrancy. He arranges his resonance space to create a shallow snarl without setting up any resistance for his breath. You can tell how healthy his delivery is from the way he moves in and out of brief moments of harmony with the other tracks with impeccable intonation. Here is the Dio song she's talking about, together with lyrics. If you think this music is simple to compose, play, or sing, you either haven't listened to it or you don't understand music. Falling off the Edge of the World
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