Monday, January 10, 2022

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 183: New Year's Round Table


In This Episode

It’s an ACP Round Table! Join Weer'd, Erin, Oddball, and David as they talk about Second Amendment News, such as:

  • The 2021 "Victories" of the Brady Campaign;
  • New guns hitting the market in 2022;
  • Ruger's new suppressor,
  • a gun prohibition politician being saved by a CCW holder;
  • and more!

Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Saturday, January 8, 2022

V5: Sumerian Vampire Clan Names

So yesterday I had a bit of the Blessed Madness come upon me, and when that happens I must drop everything and chase it because it happens so rarely, and when it does it always gives me really good material. 

So in the lore of Vampire: the Masquerade, the first vampire was Caine, the son of Adam and Eve, and vampirism was his curse for murdering his brother Abel. There's no date on when the first clans emerged, but they are mentioned as developing in the "First City", as in "the first city to ever exist". 

One of the things which has bothered me about V:tM is that even though the vampire clans date back to the dawn of civilization, the names for those clans are very modern in comparison. Toreador, Brujah, and Lasombra are Spanish; Gangrel is Middle English; Ventrue is French. The Latin Salubri is respectably old, and even though Egyptian mythology is older than Roman, the -ite suffix in Setite is Greek. 

In other words, in my extreme nerdery I wanted vampire clans to have names which were as old as they were, even if those original names weren't used any more due to linguistic drift (and the fact that players probably couldn't, and definitely wouldn't, like to use them). So I looked up which language was the oldest, and as it turns out the oldest known written language is Sumerian. This was ideal for my purposes because Sumeria was in the Fertile Crescent of the Middle East and therefore meshed perfectly with the Abrahamic origins of V:tM. 

Did you know that there's an online Sumerian dictionary where you can search for words in English? You do now. What's more, most of the words there have pictures of them written in Cuneiform (the written script of the Sumerians, among others -- sort of like how most of the Western world uses the Roman alphabet) and they are delightfully archaic and creepy. You know how in the Blade movies the various vampire houses had cryptic sigils? Well, Cuneiform looks older and creepier, and because it's an actual language it looks more legitimate as well. 

So here are the clans of Vampire: the Masquerade as I think they would have been named during the time of the First City. Because I am a hobbyist scratching at something deeper than I can imagine, I have probably gotten some things wrong. But that's okay, because we aren't looking for accuracy (because vampires don't exist), we're looking for things which are fun and flavorful. 

Canonical Clans

Banu Haqim: Sagaz

Sa-gaz (“Robber; murderer”) 

The Banu Haqim (formerly known in previous editions as Assamites) are a clan of vampires who lust after the blood of other vampires and, in previous editions at least, hired themselves out as assassins who would take as part of their payment the blood of their victim. Therefore, someone who robs and kills seems an excellent fit here. 

Brujah: Ursag

Ur-sag (“Warlike; Hero, Warrior”)

Troile, the founder of the Brujah line, had a mighty temper and a preference for physical altercation. Modern Brujah see themselves as righteous rebels fighting against The Man, they clearly see themselves as heroes. Given all that, I couldn't have picked anything else. 

Cappadocians: Namus

Nam-us (“Death”)

The Cappadocians have always been known as the Clan of Death.

Gangrel: Umaam
U-ma-am (“Beast”)

A clan of shape-shifters who take on bestial features as their humanity slips. 

Lasombra: Gissu

Gissu ("shade, shadow; protection, aegis")

Yay, the clan whose name means "The Shadow" and which has shadow powers has another name which means shadow. Yawn. 

See below for what I picked for my highly non-canonical Lasombra. 

Malkavian: Namigigal

Nam-igi-gal (“Insight”)

I'm very proud of this one, as I couldn't find a translation for "madman" or "seer" or things like this. However, "insight" is a nicely vague word which both compliments their abilities and touches upon their madness (as in "seeing what others do not"). 

Nosferatu: Ludubgara

Lu-dub-gar-ra (“Hunter”)

Abisimilard, the founder of the clan, was known as a mighty and stealthy hunter. 

Ravnos: Dabariri

Da-ba-ri-ri (“Liar, Trickster, Con Artist”)

Regardless of whether you go by the official version of this clan or my own, the fact remains that the Ravnos are distrusted by the rest of kindred society, and so this fits. It's doubtful that the Ravnos themselves would call themselves this, but unlife isn't fair and so if everyone else calls you this, this is what you're called. 

Salubri: Abgal

Ab-gal (“Sage, Priest”)

The easy solution would have been to go with "doctor" or "healer" but I felt that pigeonholed this clan too much. Abgal gives them flavors of wisdom and holiness which were lacking from other names. 

Setites: Musgal
No, I refuse to call them "The Ministry". Go away. 

Mus-gal ("Great serpent")

Y'know, it's funny: the Setites have this whole snake motif going on, yet Set himself has the head of a jackal, not a snake. But then, I think this entire clan is stupid and I'm not going to waste any more time on them. 

Toreador: Ummia

Um-mi-a (“Expert, master craftsman”)

This was another difficult one. I couldn't find a Sumerian word for "artist" or "artisan", or even "beautiful". I found this, though, and I feel that it fits well, for no other clan are experts on art and beauty. 

They don't have a Sumerian name because they didn't exist until 1022 AD. 

Tzimisce: Uzu

Uzu (“Flesh, body, entrails, omen”)

The Tzimisce are a clan of flesh-shapers, but if I'm being honest the real reason I picked this name is because the word looks like a body. 

Also, and I am not joking, there is an actual Sumerian phrase uzu zu kešda gu-mur which means "flesh tooth bind spine" and I can't think of a better way to describe Vicissitude than that. 

Ventrue: Lugal

Lu-gal (“lord; master; owner; king; a quality designation”)

The Ventrue are the Clan of Kings. Self-explanatory.

Non-Canon Clans

Ba'ali: Kurgara

Kur-gar-ra (“Cultic performer”)

As I've mentioned elsewhere,  I hate the Followers of Set and so the demon-worshipping  Ba'ali are the super-evil baddies in my V:tM world. "Cultic performer" is close enough to "cultist" for my taste, and I am tickled that the first character resembles Damien's triple-6 birthmark from The Omen.

Lasombra: Dar
Dar (“To break up, crush, grind; to split, split up; to cut open”)

This is for my non-canonical, not-having-shadow-powers version of the clan which are cancerous corruptors who blackmail people and hollow out organizations in order to control them. I feel that the meaning of this word perfectly encapsulates how I see the Lasombra operating. 

Nagaraja: Sugzag Gu

Sug-zag gu (“To destroy completely” with “gu” meaning “to eat, consume”)

This is for my version of the Nagaraja. The word is interesting because "sugzag gu" as a whole means "to destroy", but the component "sugzag" means "marsh edge" and "gu" means "to eat". This makes me think of a crocodile dragging its prey underwater, never to be seen again and to be devoured at its leisure. This really fits with how I envision the Nagaraja. 

Friday, December 31, 2021

Happy New Year?

 Yikes, it's been a busy season for me, Between the holidays and trying to clean up the various messes that dad has left us (both financial and literal), I've been pretty absorbed lately. So absorbed, in fact, that I forgot to post the My Little Pony Christmas card that has become traditional around here. So, since Christmas is a season of the church that lasts until January 6, I'm posting this here and claiming that no, I'm not at all late. 

And because one of my friends pointed out "No love for Applejack", I rationalize that away by saying:
  • AJ is wrangling the sheep.
  • Fluttershy is leading the bird chorus.
  • Rarity is in charge of costumes.
  • And Pinkie Pie is running the concession stand. 

Right, so that's Christmas handled. As I write this, Twenty Twenty Won is ticking down its final moments, and I hope that the new year is merely 2022 and not Twenty Twenty, Too. 

And now, some festive New Year's memes:

Art by Lily Seika Jones

I wish everyone (including myself -- hell, especially myself) a healthy, happy, prosperous, and above all else a SANE and NORMAL 2022.

Monday, December 27, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 182: Keep 2A Advocacy Non-Partisan


In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d talk about why you shouldn't mix partisan politics with Second Amendment activism;
  • Xander brings us his Independent Thoughts on dealing with emotion-filled holidays;
  • and superfan Nyssa tells us a story from work that is full of surprises!

Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Monday, December 20, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 181: The Low-Energy Show


In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d are both feeling a bit under the weather.
  • Still, they are uplifted to hear that the gun prohibitionist candidate for Texas Governor Beto O'Rourke is not doing well in the polls;
  • then David tells some horror stories of life behind the gun store counter;
  • and finally, Weer'd sits down with Paloma Capanna to discuss the strange tale of Jeremy Brown.

Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Monday, December 13, 2021

Assorted Calibers Podcast Ep 180: ABC- Always Be Cautious


In This Episode
  • Erin and Weer’d discuss the arrest of the Michigan school shooter's parents;
  • David explains the operation of the Colt Single Action Army revolver;
  • and guest Paloma Capanna talks about cellphone security.

Did you know that we have a Patreon? Join now for the low, low cost of $4/month (that’s $1/podcast) and you’ll get to listen to our podcast on Friday instead of Mondays, as well as patron-only content like mag dump episodes and our hilarious blooper reels and film tracks.

Show Notes

Main Topic:

Gun Lovers and Other Strangers:

Paloma Capanna Interview: 

Kaffeine Kate

Katherine Saunders was a barista at Starbucks while studying to be a doctor at Paragon City University (endocrinology, if you must know). As the course load became heavier she started drinking more coffee in order to stay awake longer, cramming for tests and writing term papers. Eventually, she drank so much caffeine that her minor mutant power, the ability to process stimulants more efficiently than other humans, kicked into high gear and mutated further. 

Her metabolism now permanently overcharged, Kate exists in a perpetual state of caffeine overload. She jogs at 60 mph, and when really wants to go fast she can outrun anything that isn't jet-propelled. Her nervous system is also a powerful superconductor, able to discharge powerful bolts of bio-electricity she calls "Java Jolts" that will fry non-EMP resistant electronics and turn most enemies into twitching, drooling lumps. 

Although her boots and gloves are made of a special material that grips surfaces tightly without restricting her mobility, the rest of her costume is little more than a runner's spandex unitard because heat buildup, flexibility, and above all chafing is a concern for her. She doesn't worry about road rash because in addition to heightened speed and reflexes, she can manipulate the levels of caffeine and blood sugar in others. Essentially a "caffeine vampire", she can take energy from others to supercharge herself (including her healing factor) and induce speed or lethargy to others as needed.

She wears a ruggedized microphone and speaker on her face because shenormallytalkislikethiswhichsoundslikeataperunningatfastforwardwithoutanybreaksbetweenwords and most people can't understand that, so the mic catches what she says, records it, slows is down to a rate that people can understand, and plays it back for them. This entire process is incredibly boring for Kate, and so she is constantly fidgeting, moving, and doing things while waiting for people to catch up to her. She's become somewhat of a favorite among the ADHD crowd for this and does a lot of advocacy work for related charities. The Kaffeine Kate-brand fidget spinners are quite popular.

Now a paid spokeshero for Starbucks Corporation (LookIgottaeatandsuperheroingdoesn'tpaythebillsandlookatmedoyouthinkIcouldworkaregularjobImeanreally), Kate spends her time between promotional and charity appearances doing heroic deeds and delivering hope, inspiration, and a much-needed caffeine boost to all the overworked heroes of Paragon City. 

Does she even sleep? No one knows.

Kaffeine Kate: a Kinetics/Electric Blast defender

The Fine Print

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