John-Michael Gariepy

Archive for the month “October, 2011”

Battles are never pretty, and your dreams

Battles are never pretty,

and your dreams

are misleading.  When two armies switch

weapons, it is the soldiers

who lose.  Yet, when bugles call,

they hasten swords and shoulders

trusting in the wisdom of those who envision

for them (because if they planned

the deaths they commit, the shame

would take with it; the fight).

Still you command a legion

of insecurities and manias,

compelled to rage against all

who stand.  Will warefare’s toll

have value when we are both

defeated; our mutual desires strewn,

exhausted, against arm’s theater? Or,

will it end like war ends: Inconclusive

and obscure – planting the weapons of war

in hopes of an abundant harvest.


Dungeons and Dragons Random Encounters: Level 1

For an explanation and introduction to Random Encounters, go to Why would anyone make a chart for random encounters?

Roll once for each adventurer in your party.  Whenever you roll a Brute, or a Soldier, add two of that creature and roll one less time total.  If the last creature you roll is a brute, or a soldier, your players will have to suck it up.  There will be more experience for them anyway.  Whenever Minions are rolled, add the number of minions shown to the encounter and count them as one creature for the purposes of generating an encounter.

Since first level encounters are incapable of randomly becoming lower level encounters, there is a 5% higher chance that the monster will be hindered in some way to help balance this out.

01 – 10 Roll on the Random Hindrances Table.

11-14 (Artillery)  Halfling Slinger

15 – 20 (Artillery)  Kobold Slinger Read more…

I Love You So Much, You Could Die

You know, I never believed you when you said that you were leaving.
I always thought that was just your way to get out of cleaning.
But, that day I chased you down the street witha a packed suitcase,
I saw the sorrow mixed with painc in your face.Now, I’m sitting at home without any dinner on the stove,
and, I know, a man can’t live off of beer and frozen dinners
– I need you baby!  I’m all alone!
When I think of how you left me, it wells tears up in my eyes.
It makes me want to kick you in the ribs for looking at other guys.I love you darling, I want to punch you in the face.
And since you left me, the neighbors think that I’m a disgrace.
So come back to me darling, or I’ll find out where you lie.
You can’t comprehend!
I love you so much,
you could die.

I wonder if you understand how your love is the breath of life to me.
And when you leave, I asphyxiate like a guppy out of water
-I can’t breathe, baby!
I know my darling, I don’t treat you well when you are near.
But if you try to keep me from you, then the punishment will be severe!

I love you darling.  I want to punch you in the face.
And since you left me, the neighbors say I’m a disgrace.
So come back to me darling, or I’ll find out where you lie.
You can’t comprehend!
I love you so much,
you could die.


I know you think that if you run far and fast we’re through.
But, every move you make, every step you take, I’ll be watching you!

I love you darling.  I want to punch you in the face.
And since you left me, the neighbors call me a disgrace.
So come back to me darling, or I’ll find out where you lie.
You can’t comprehend!
I love you so much,
you could die.


I want to believe that I’m tough,

So, I shake babies and threaten old men.
I get in their faces and say “What?
You wish to make something of it?”
It has become ‘Go-Time’.I toss aside my jacket, he his dentures,
and we circle each other,
me: arms up, crossing my right foot over my left,
him: shifting his weight between his good leg
and his cane – hip ain’t been the same what since Korea.

I swing first. I fear the old man might get winded
and recognize my superiority, but he counters
and launches a barage of attacks. All of which
bounce off my chest. “Aha! An opening!”
I say, and kick out his cane. He has lost.

That is when suspicion develops in my noodle.
By overwhelming my ancient in hand to hand combat
is it not “I” who have lost
having loosened my morales like a showgirl’s corset?
I chuckle. “No.” I say, “I proved I’m tough.”

Drivel, in B Minor

If there is one thing more

important to a poet than

then it must be love.  You
can’t fool me!  I’ve read the
other poet’s poems and being
self-centered is important, but
when they aren’t talking about
themselves, they’re talking about
their amores.

Love, lust, adoration, immitation, love lost, love lived and love never found.  I’ve read about sleeping wives and beautiful lives and love denied with kitchen knives.  Car’s on hills, she takes the pill, and I love her so much she gives me heat rashes.

Sometimes it gets so bad, I’d
prefer the artist get back to
how miserable and dreary his life is.

“Is this all going somewhere?”
you ask.  Why yes, you see,
I, too, am a pretentious
son-of-a-bitch and wish to
tell you about my amore
as well

, which cannot be done.  I don’t
have one, which confounds the shit
out of me.  I mean, how can I be a poet and not have some female constantly dashing my affections?  How can I call myself an artist if I can’t agonize over the decisions / lack of decisions of my betrothed / stalking material.  I’m a sham.  I don’t want anyone, and I figure few people want me and I want to keep it that way.

Yet, despite this, or more because
of this (?) I am driven to write (…)
My brain will not relax
until it has given birth
to some stillborn idea –
kept the abortion like a real child
and presented it on a high chair
with toys, bib and fed it
food it can never chew.

Sometimes it gets so bad, I’d
prefer the artist get back to
how miserable and dreary his life is.

[Insert Title]

There was a time I used to
crank out poems
one, two, three, four, five,
like clay pigeons for cumming’s
Death’s Buffalo Bill.
Now the words come slow.

Is it a result of being rusty,
becoming more organized or
both? I don’t know, but
somewhere I lost something.

There was a time that I’d
sit down to write and I
wouldn’t stop writing until
I stood, and there’d be
a long time between both events.

Now the words come slow.

Rock Band Review: Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magik

I’m a bit behind in reporting this to the world, but I’m still a little new at the whole “I now have a public blog” experience, so please forgive me.

A friend of mine, Julie Rousseau, has started up a blog about music called  For those of you who don’t know Julie, she’s been teaching musical aptitude to children and adults for years, and her blog is an obvious extension of her love of notes on a staff.  When she first started pulling the blog together, she asked me if I wanted to contribute music reviews.  I was hesitant at first.  I love music, and have eclectic tastes, but I’m a bit uncomfortable telling people that I know why The Sex Bo-bomb’s first album wasn’t as good as they’re first album.

I do, however, love my RockBand.  And while I haven’t done any video game reviews, I’ve done plenty of board game reviews.  So, I agreed to pitch her a RockBand Track Pack review about once per month.  My first one, for the Red Hot Chili Peppers album Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magik can be gone to by clicking on that link.  I’ve got a few more on the dock and I don’t see any reason not to send more Julie’s way.  They’re fun articles to write, and, hopefully, fun to read as well.  Plus, I get to hold RockBand parties and tell everyone that I’m doing research.  And I love getting people’s opinions out of them.  Sweet deal.

Bananagrams vs. Scrabble Apple: Fruit Fight!

In this corner, weighing in at 14 ounces, the defender of the bag of tile explosion; The Splitter from Manilla! Bananagrams!

And, in this corner, weighing in at a sleek 6.4 ounces, the young upstart from a family of Super Stars; The Corker from New Yorka! Scrabble Apple!

In 2006, a company by the name of Bananagrams International was formed to bring the world a damn fine alternative to Travel Scrabble. Bananagrams is a fun fast-paced tile-based word-game that can be played anywhere out of its fashionable, kind of goofy banana case. Incapable of suing Bananagrams, Parker Brothers attacked back with Scrabble Apple. At first, I thought this seemed like a not-so-clever way for Parker Brothers to steal Bananagram’s audience, but I received a copy of Scrabble Apple and was surprised to find that there was a different rules set inside. Time for a food fight! Read more…

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