A Pyromancer is Born

Kindling the first flame

This photoshoot didn’t start off inspired by the Dark Souls series, but during the shoot I was “prepared to die.” I couldn’t shake the feeling that a giant halberd wielding knight was going to invade my world and leave me jumping over bottomless chasms to retrieve my 23,225 souls. I needed those to level up. This once “element” inspired shoot has now been morphed by my passion for the Souls series.

Have I gone hollow?

I awoke in a world of darkness. The dark sign has begun its cycle. I refuse to hollow, I will not become one of the mindless. I must rekindle the bonfire to preserve the age of flame.

The dark sign has appeared

A pyromancer is born

There are many great trials ahead of me. I must find the original bonfire and rekindle it. I don’t have much to my name yet, a few simple fire tricks and not much else. I must channel this power into something greater.

A single pyromancy

Linking the fire

Fire now bends to my will; it has been a long road. I have fought past hydras, black knights, and dragons without scales. Now I find myself standing before a wall of fog. The Lord of Cinder himself stands beyond this threshold. I have also learned that sacrificing myself to link the fire will only prolong the cycle. Perhaps it’s time for a new age; the age of the dark. I’ve yet to decide what path to take.

The fire now storms

Top 5 Toys That Spin

Why things that spin?

As humans we are drawn to things that spin. Toys have been capitalizing on this for as long as they have been around. If it can spin we will likely play with it.

5. Fidget Spinners

This is the newest entry into the spinning toy category. Fidget spinners have hit the ground running and have become the latest fad. Because of how new they are and the limited (currently) number of tricks; they come in at number 5.

4. Spinning Tops

Tops are like lamer versions of spidget finners (see what I did there). Why did they rank higher than fidget spinners? Solely because of their longevity. Tops date back to ancient times. Also dreidels are tops so bonus points or something.

3. Beyblades

Beyblades quickly came into our lives and disappeared from them just as fast. They were like spinning tops on some sort of drug that made them hyper aggressive (I’m looking at you bath salts). Beyblades are tops that fight when you pulled the cord. It’s too bad they only lasted about 5 seconds in the limelight.

Here and gone so fast.

2. Playing Cards

Playing cards aren’t typically the go-to toy when it comes to “spinning objects,” but they are the perfect example of “if it can spin it will spin.” Many people toss around, throw, and spin cards for fun. If you haven’t ever seen someone masterfully spin a card check it out here.

1. Yoyos

What other spinning toy has been so utilized. The yoyo stormed the world and has acted as a staple in the toy world for decades. Unlike most of the other toys listed, the yoyo is extremely versatile. Its versatility has led it to amass an amazing number of possible tricks. The yoyo is the only toy on this list that has professional tournaments tied to it (tied, like the string…please don’t make me explain my puns).

Top 10 Things You Should Know About Perpetually Single Hopeless Romantics

1. We accidentally build an arsenal of weird skills.

A hopeless romantic isn’t satisfied just meeting a stranger from a bar. We want someone who shares in our passions and hobbies. Because of this we often find ourselves taking on new ventures in order to meet someone. When we inevitably don’t find the love of our lives we are left with a new hobby and hundreds of hours soaked into it.

2. We love our friends that are in relationships, but often feel left out.

The world has this tendency to put a high value on couples and families, while neglecting singles. We are happy for our friends that have found someone, but it is still hurtful when there are “couples only” double, triple, and quadruple date nights.

3. Gladice, I’m sure your granddaughter is very nice, but for the 600th time I’m not interested.

For some reason the older people in our lives always try to set us up with their relatives even when we have absolutely nothing in common or any mutual interest. Stop it old people, just stop.

4. We don’t have unrealistic expectations.

As a “hopeless romantic” we are seeking our other half, the other piece of the puzzle. We want someone with commitment, loyalty, that shares in our interests and passions. We don’t hop around from person to person and as such advice like “just date around until you find someone you like” doesn’t fly too well with us. We don’t play games and don’t relish in the idea of hurting others.

5. Current social norms leave us feeling isolated.

We are less than thrilled with the state of “social norms” at the moment. We live in a world full of the ‘FOMO, do what is best for yourself, forget loyalty, and do whatever you want’ mentality.

6. We’ve tried dating sites and they suck.

Dating sites are the breeding ground for the types of people mentioned in point number 5. I’m sure there are some good people that attempt to use them, but they are vastly outnumbered and often scared away by the crazies.

7. There’s no reason to belittle us.

“Your standards are too high,” “just put yourself out there,” “learn to settle,” “I hear Gladice’s granddaughter is single,” are not things we enjoy hearing, nor are they helpful in the least.

8. We aren’t scared of commitment.

As a matter of fact we prefer commitment. We just don’t commit to people we aren’t interested in pursuing. There is either interest or there isn’t. There is no in-between.

9. We aren’t selfish.

We would give anything to find that fairy tale ending. To have someone to make laugh, to share with, to be our adventure friend. Just because we are single and don’t have to answer to anyone but ourselves doesn’t make us selfish.

10. We value love.

Above all else we value the idea of love, actual love, not what movies and television claim it is. The selfless kind of love that seems to no longer exist.

Is love dead? Most likely, but hopefully not. 

Photo Shoot Fun

A quick “add some Gambit energy to cards” edit

Card Cascade
Wishing I was Gambit

So this isn’t going to be one of my normal blog entries. I recently went out on a little photo shoot with my friend Mark. We decided to take an approach where we went for a “Gambit style” shoot, playing on my love of cards. We originally had the idea of doing a full cosplay, but then decided we’d rather take a more subtle approach. This entry isn’t really going to have much writing, more or less I just wanted to share some of my favourite shots from our little adventure.

The gallery

If our Gambit photo shoot was shot like every Bigfoot sighting.
Climbing is important.
Trees are important too.
We decided that Superheroes are always perching on something.
…or leaning in between things.
…or just chilling.

Secret Blog Puzzle

You’re on the right track

So recently I put out a puzzle in my blog. I’m really impressed with the response I’ve received in regards to it. I’ve also noticed that it’s a little on the difficult side. I’d like to offer you a hint. There are really only 3 main blog posts that will be relevant to you, though there are some hidden chambers to explore.

***if you don’t want a hint please do not read any further in this post***

Hint time

If you are looking for underlines to guide you then you are seeking in vain. You have been looking at the picture a little too close, but remember not every link in the chain is green. Words are your friends, hover around them a little more.

Escaping Prison

How to escape from prison.

We were framed!

So Ryan, Alyssa, and I found ourselves behind bars yesterday. Ryan was arrested for streaking and I was arrested for disorderly conduct (probably because I was loudly convincing ryan to streak). Alyssa was arrested for jaywalking (in her defence she was trying to get away from Ryan and I as quickly as possible). The really weird part was we were tossed into the same cells as these two (who went by Anthony and Sarah). Sarah was arrested for grand theft auto and Anthony was arrested for robbing a bank. Hardly comparable to our petty crimes. It was actually kind of terrifying being in the same cells as major and possibly violent criminals.

We needed to get out

We began talking with our cell mates and they didn’t seem that bad. As a matter of fact they had all been framed by the same corrupt police that threw us in jail. We had to get out. We worked as a team and knew we only had an hour before the guard would come back around. Luckily we used our wit, dexterity, and combined problem solving to make a grand escape in 46:49.

Rooms to escape

If you haven’t guessed yet (or just don’t know much about them) we were playing an escape room game. My group of friends loves these. Today we tried out Prison Break at Ape Escape here in Windsor, Ontario. I can’t say enough good things about it. Everything was intuitive, it wasn’t linear, had an array of different types of puzzles, a completely charming atmosphere, and some very unique ideas.

Overall I was very impressed with Ape Escape and I’m sure we will be going back some time soon to try out their Casino Heist room.

4.8/5 experience

***side note***

One day I hope there is a 5 hour long, massive, insanely hard escape room challenge. Something that really just suspends our notion of reality for a long time and let’s us live out that adventure.

Getting Scientific

Monday science is now a thing at Read N’ Butter

It’s about to get educational

Hey everyone I came up with this concept of doing a weekly entry on one of my favourite scientific, psychological, or philosophical principles. Every Monday I’ll use stories and (a lot of) sarcasm to explain one of the theories that interests me.

A carrot who is a scientist is unmatchable
Science and stuff

But Shane, won’t this interefere with your normal posts, stories, hidden links, and absurdities?

Absolutely not my loyal reader. The Monday explainations are something that I figured would be fun and add some structure here at Read N’ Butter. Every Monday I want you to have something a little more substantial to dig into. Combining the scheduled posts with the chaotic ones will be a lot of fun.

A giant fan of cards
Random posts will still be a thing

The Big City

“That place is a maze, had to fight a Minotaur to get to my train.”

A small town boy

I am undeniably a “small town boy.” I grew up in a rural county just outside of Windsor, Ontario. My home town had a population density of around 60 people per square kilometre. For comparison’s sake Toronto’s population density is 945.4 people per square kilometre. Yesterday I was on an adventure in Toronto and it took no time at all for me to realize how much of a small town mindset I had (not in a bad way).

Trains and farm fields; my home
Toronto has an entire underground marketplace, my town has a sewer

Populations were a little different

While writing this article I googled Toronto’s population and it was around 6 million. 

My obligatory tourist picture

I then tried to find the population of the town I grew up in. Google didn’t have this information, but did offer me the fact that the community of 17 towns (of which mine was one) had a combined population of 36,000. Thanks Google.

Apparently in Toronto you can buy giant hotdogs from carts
It tasted better than I expected

I have since moved from that little town into Windsor, with a massive population of 210,000 (still a fraction of Toronto).

Windsor, we have farms, factories, and Detroit

What I noticed about Toronto

It seemed like everyone was in a hurry. I realize even by small town standards I’m pretty laid back. As someone coming from a town where everyone knows one another, Toronto was an odd, yet fun experience. I ran into some street performers who were a little more relaxed. 

Not street performers
Even the construction looked kind of cool

Met a magician named Steve, nice guy, great “stage presence,” but simple sleights. I bumped into him while playing around with some cards and practicing a few of my moves. He did his routine for everyone and we talked a bit afterwards. Even though he was “laid back” by Toronto standards he was still a far cry from the pace I was used to. People were mesmerized by his act (especially kids, teens, and people in their 20’s) and it made me realize how much people are seeking an escape from the craziness.

The most buildings I’ve ever seen

The great escapism

It seems no matter where you go people are looking for some form of mental escape. Nobody is happy being stressed out and everyone wants something to pull them out of the 9-5 grind.

I got lost inside Toronto Union Station. That place is a maze, had to fight a Minotaur to get to my train.

Movies, magic, books, and video games all do that. I love brining a bit of magic into people’s lives to remind them how full of wonder the world can be. 

Movie advertisements everywhere…almost like people desire a form of escape

I also hope that you get some form of enjoyment from reading my blog or trying to figure out that puzzle I left in some earlier entries. This post took a different turn from where I had intended on going.

The only time I had a place all to myself on the trip, and it was a hall

I was going to tell jokes about being a young man seeing buildings for the first time (based on the pictures I was taking).

My first buildings
Like I said, I was very much a tourist

Anyway, have an awesome day and remember “there’s more to life than grinding away on what you think is important.”

Audition Travelling

The train to Toronto

I’m just about to jump on a train (actually I’m going to board it in the proper manner). This is the first time I’ve ever taken a train. Normally I just drive my car up to Toronto, but today I was feeling a little more adventurous. Plus I didn’t feel like driving for 4 hours each way. I can sleep, run lines, and practice magic on a train, but if I were to do those things while driving my car apparently I’d be “endangering others.” So far VIA has been awesome; however, I am slightly worried by the fact that they check your ticket after the train starts moving. What do they do to the people who don’t have tickets? “Tuck and roll grandma, it’s gonna be a rough landing.”

***warning you will be exposed to bad train puns in this article, but I’ll try to stay on track***

Train puns
‘Train’ing myself to overcome

Something to overcome

I’m heading to Toronto for an audition. I had submitted a self-tape for a tv show and was just offered a callback. Acting is one of my passions in life, so I jump at every opportunity I get to act. To be honest I just love attention, pretty sure I’d die if I had to go an hour without people noticing my crazy antics. I was actually a bit nervous this time, which is extremely odd for me. I even at one point considered not going. I love everything about this role and really didn’t have any logical response for why I wouldn’t go. So what was holding me back?

All the train puns
I won’t be derailed

Anxiety: a sneaky but dangerous foe 

I suppose anxiety for whatever reason was trying to get in my way. We all deal with different amounts of anxiety when put in unfamiliar situations. It’s only by pushing ourselves outside of our comfort zones that we truly grow. After buying my ticket and deciding to make an entire day out of the trip I became excited again. I’ve been running my lines and realize how silly that little bit of anxiety was. Something great may come from this, or it may not. Either way I overcame the little wall that popped up. The same applies to your life and the little barriers that try to prevent you from doing what you love.

The adventure plan

I’m planning on doing a whole bunch of magic tricks. I also want to talk to as many strangers as I can and just bring a little unexpected cheer to their lives. Who knows where it may take me? You never know exactly what journey lies before you.

I’ll post an update of my adventure when I get home.

Thor Ragnarok Epic Reveal

Thor Ragnarok Meme

Thor Ragnarok Meme
He’s a friend from work.

Possibly my shortest post

All I really wanted this entry to be was this meme I put together. So with that I say goodbye (also go check out Thor Ragnarok when it comes out). Loving the idea (as of now) that the Marvel Cinematic Universe is using World War Hulk.