I love Obsidian. I'm writing this post in my main Obsidian vault right now, actually. You should check it out for yourself, but in brief, Obsidian is a very powerful notes management application with document linking, among a bunch of other great features.

I also love playing tabletop RPG games. My current favorite game is Quest, but I mostly play D&D 5th edition. Specifically, I mostly DM when I play, and I've constantly been searching for an actually good digital DMing setup.

It wasn't until after I had already begun building my own app specifically for DMing that I found Obsidian, which basically did everything I was planning to build. Though it does lack some of the features I wanted, but still, it was enough to make me stop what I was building and find a way to work with it. Let's run through my process and why Obsidian is so dang good for DMing.

I'll preface this by saying I mostly run custom campaigns in custom worlds, but I believe even without having a trove of your own custom written content, Obsidian proves useful.


...and why they're good for DMing

  • Document linking – Link directly from your mention of a notable NPC to their profile document
  • Window multiplexing – Have a combat tracker note, enemy profile, and item reference all up at the same time within the app
  • Backlink listing – See all the other places you've mentioned a given item, location or NPC
  • Fuzzy find – Open the document you need with two or three keystrokes to keep things moving while DMing
  • Graph view – See how everything fits together in your story


The real key to it all though is having a wealth of resources available as a baseline for building adventures and referencing during gameplay. I found a really great markdown version of the D&D's rulebooks and wrote a script to break it down into individual documents. One document per spell, class, mechanic, item, monster, etc – with a few Obsidian bonuses like backlinking to indexes for spells or monsters.

Then, I just plop all of that in a folder called reference, and make an Obsidian vault with that folder. Suddenly, I have almost all of D&D's content at my request with just a simple file search, fuzzy find, or document link. When I say there is a goblin in a scene, I can just link to the document with all the info about goblins with [[goblin]] in my Obsidian documents.

Not to mention that Obsidian lets you embed a document in another document, so you can directly embed any reference page into your writing for quick access.

You can download a copy of my Obsidian D&D 5e reference folder. I will be continuing to iterate on this and will make a for real repo in the future but for now, that's what I'm working with. (Update: there is now a github repo: twisterghost/5e-obsidian)

Additional Files

I then have a few auxiliary files on top of the campaign writing and the reference documents.

  • Turn order tracker – Just a simple doc with the player character names and any enemies in a combat. I jot down initiative and just trace through the turns. Obsidian has markdown support for tables, too, to make this a little better looking
  • Session notes – A scratch document to jot down anything that comes up, any improvised NPC names or anything you need to remember for next time. I usually swing back through this document and spruce it up a bit when writing more for the campaign, because it often just reads like nonsense after a few days.

And that's about it! Not much else to say. The ideal app, the one I wanted to build, is basically Obsidian, but also would have an automated turn tracker, dice roller, and maybe even a virtual tabletop. I know Roll20 has a lot of tools, but in my experience, it ends up being a mess to work with, especially when trying to fiddle with it all in real time while DMing. But for now, Obsidian has been the closest I've found to my ideal setup.


from Dino’s Journal 📖

It's been over a month since my last music log. What with the digital declutter and all. Anyway, it's time for another one. I've got two hard hitting head-bang inducing rock songs in this music log. Both tracks deliver great messages to their listeners. Let's get started.

First up is the song “Justified” by one of my favorite bands, A Day To Remember. This song is a great reminder for all of us to stop being judgemental of other people. Especially those with a different set of beliefs than ours. If your set of beliefs or religion has you looking down at other people who believe differently, then there's something wrong there.

Just as an example, Jesus said, “Love your neighbors as yourself.” Note that He didn't say to love them only if they believe what you believe. He said to love them as you love yourself.

Anyway, I don't want to sound like I'm preaching in this music log. Here are some of the song's lyrics. This is a great rock song from start to finish.

Burn me alive If you feel that's justified I need more than faith To see you on the other side, the other side

Can you hear me? The lowly one Do ya fear me? You righteous ones

Song links:

Second song for today is “In Between” by Beartooth. This is a good, hard rock, anthemic and uplifting track. It delivers a great message to listeners.

Life's so dark when every day is a struggle why go out and see the world on fire Don't let your mindset become what controls you Speak right now and make the choice to grow

Don't run away, run away, run away Don't run away, run away, run away (Run!) Up on the mountain I see down below It's easy to lose yourself I know Can't hear what you're shouting, I'm deaf to your show It's easy to lose your self control Everybody gets high, everybody gets low Life can be such overdose Up on the mountain I see down below It's easy to lose yourself I know in the in between Oh! In the in between

My favorite part of this song is the bridge. They captured this moment really well in the music video. You can see that the vocalist has given up and starts drowning. But help is on the way and what a relief that is to see.

I won't let pain get in my way I can't have silence claiming me We have strength in numbers, strength in numbers To get us through the day

Everyone battles their own demons in life. Whether that be addiction, anxiety, depression, sickness, whatever it may be, keep on fighting! Don't let suicide be your only way out. Find other people in the same predicament as you. Find other people who can pull you out of the darkness that you're in. And if all that fails, look up. Help is there, when you need it. Just don't give up.

No compromises to be made, this is a war we're gonna win We have strength in numbers, strength in numbers To get us through the day

Song links:

And that's it for today. I hope y'all have a good weekend.

This post is Day 74 of my #100DaysToOffload challenge. Visit to get more info, or to get involved.

Tags: #MusicLog #ADayToRemember #Beartooth #PostHardcore #100DaysToOffload

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from Slamet Hendry

Shop Class as Soulcraft

“Those who work in an office often feel that, despite the proliferation of contrived metrics they must meet, their job lacks objective standards of the sort provided by, for example, a carpenter's level, and that as a result there is something arbitrary in the dispensing of credit and blame.”

“Corporations portray themselves as results-based and performance-oriented. But where there isn't anything material being produced, objective standards for job performance are hard to come by.”

“Failures often force you to ask a favor of someone else ... Such an experience of dependence makes you humble, and grateful.”

~ Matthew B. Crawford

#quotes #learningorg

Note: “Shop Class as Soulcraft” was Matthew's first book. He also wrote other books.


from RandomThoughts

Day 114 Today was decent for sure. I got enough sleep in, so I started around 11 after sleeping around 3 I think it was. I didn't do much in all honesty the night before just the usual streaming and busying my self on the web. It was one of those nights that I just didn't want to sleep early but relax and enjoy the moment I was in. After I woke up, I freshened up just in time for the usual Friday meeting, nice little catch up with the team and away I started my day. I did work as usual for about a few hours and got everything I needed done for the day (one thing remains but I can do it on Monday.) After that around half 2 I got a call then ended up jumping out after about an hour. Ended up chilling in the usual spot till about 6ish.

I came home and ate some pizza, layed in bed and then jumped out again around 8:20. By that point I was super drained and tired af but I knew like the previous night it'd rejuvenate me to an extent and wake me up. Which is exactly what happened. It was a different crowd, with jokes and the like.

But the mandatory 10pm shut down meant we had to leave, then got home like half an hour ago and then chilled with the fam and played with my niece.

I, then, decided it's time for my post before needing the toilet lol and here we are as I streamline my time lol and write it out. Literally won't leave until I've done both jobs aha.

But yeah it was a quiet day, very relaxing for the mind and a good laugh. So I've enjoyed it, bit of a nice balance and all that.

So yeah that's me basically. Quiet day, short post. Can't complain, probably knock out in about an hour or three and call it a night.

Until the next.


from Nate Dickson Thinks...

This year has been hard enough on the face of it, but for some reason I have come up with a number of ways to make it even harder on myself. This wasn't really intentional; most bad habits aren't.

Some part of my mind has decided that “the past” has nothing to teach me, because nobody else in my lifetime has had to deal with all of this. But that's a very myopic view. True, this is the first worldwide pandemic in living memory, but not the first one in our history. My parents had to live with a very different looming threat: that of sudden, unexplained nuclear annihilation. We look back on the cold war era with a little bit of amusement now, but that's because we know how it “ended”, even though it hasn't.

And worse than that, I've been cutting myself off from comforts; mostly, again, unconsciously. I think about watching a movie or reading a book and thinking “but how can that make me feel better if it doesn't directly address our current problems?” and the answer, of course is that it doesn't address our current problems. I'm sheltering in place, I'm wearing a mask when I go shopping, I've voted, I'm doing all I can to be a good neighbor and keep my family and community safe. It's okay to take my brain off the hook once in a while and think about things that aren't the here and now.

So I'm trying to let myself listen to more old music, watch TV shows from happier times (or at least shows that portray the past as a happier time) and let my mind take some refuge from the current world. The world will still be there with all its attendant problems when I get back, I can take a little break.

I’m publishing this as part of 100 Days To Offload. You can join in yourself by visiting 100 Days To Offload.

#100DaysToOffload 46/100


from inquiry

Ah, yes... accomplished some rather satisfying API leveraging via node.js and lua. My kind 'o work – and I get to feel like a hero since no one else I work with/for knows understands any of it, thus raising the appearance of it to the level of magick to/for them.

Still a bit of drizzle outside.

My wife's not having as happy a day as I, though. I get the feeling she's surrounded by even more idiots than I.

She's in education, you see.

Well, I am too... but far more indirectly. So essentially no contact with students, teachers, or parents.

It seems that can amount to a wholllllllllle lotta idiocy....

Or so the simulation seems today.


from Art of Bull

“When people stop believing in God, they don’t believe in nothing — they believe in anything.” [Émile Cammaerts]

Recent years have seen an unlikely alliance emerge in the ranks of the bullshitting elite. For a while it seemed that climate scientists were set to topple economists from their lofty perch at the top of the world ranking tables, but cooler heads prevailed, and an unholy alliance was born. Now it is true that this formidable pairing has seen in 2020 a fearsome challenge from epidemiologists – lead by the Gates-funded virus alarmist Neil Ferguson of Imperial College. Impressive as his efforts were (we’ll discuss those another day), economists and climate scientists are in a league of their own. Their mutually reinforcing narratives have the potential to do untold harm, unless we recognize them for the world-class bullshitters they know themselves to be, and discount their pronouncements accordingly. Superficially, the coupling of economics, especially financial economics, with climate science may seem far-fetched, but the ties that bind practitioners of these dark arts run deep. They include, but are by no means limited to, the following.

  1. Theories that are inherently untestable by way of controlled, repeatable experiments. Their models can only be tested with reference to a single run of history based on imperfect measures of the variables of interest – which themselves are often ill-defined.

  2. Complex domains in which even the most sophisticated of models are but crude abstractions. Such models may help understand what mechanisms may be at play, but they cannot predict with any reliability. This latter point is hardly surprising as the simplifying assumptions are known to be unrealistic and there for the sake of mathematical elegance or computational convenience. Further, minor perturbations to the modeling inputs often make enormous differences to the outputs.

  3. Not only a demonstrable inability to predict, but zero accountability for grossly inaccurate predictions.

  4. Key research findings are based on models and data that are proprietary, opaque and unverifiable.

  5. Incentives are highly perverted and similarly aligned: with zero accountability for errors and high payoffs for impactful results. Impactful results being those that attract media interest, and ultimately, funding.

  6. Not only are the incentives of climate scientists and economists aligned, they are mutually reinforcing. Climatic forecasts seem all the more critical if their economic consequences are shown to be dire, and otherwise perverse economic policies can be promoted based on the dire projections of climatic doom. The ensuing feedback loop drowns out any question or hint of criticism.

  7. In neither domain can the orthodoxy be questioned. Physicist Richard Feynman famously states, “It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong.” Economists think differently. If observed data doesn't agree with the consensus model, it's called an “anomaly” – not the model, the observed phenomena! Climate scientists take a more ad-hominem approach: the messenger is labeled a “denier” and relegated to the lunatic fringe. If the latter doesn't work, history is rewritten to fit the narrative:

Are these claims exaggerated?

If anything, they are understated! We'll explore them all with specific examples in coming posts.

Why does this any of this matter?

Enormous top-down political, financial and social initiatives are being mobilized based on the narrative of climate change and the dire projections of its consequences. The social, economic and even environmental costs of the suggested “cures” are far easier to project than any impacts on temperature or climate. Acquiescing to policy mandates based on charlatanism could prove costly on many levels.

More Importantly

Climate scientists and economists know that while reality imposes inconvenient limits on true science, their own brand of pseudoscience is infinitely more accommodating. Narrative freedom coupled with an appearance of scientific authority is the cornerstone of their influence in a post-truth world. Scientism rules the day.

In their purest forms both science and religion are complementary quests for truth. The scientific method answers questions of “how” and questions of meaning and “why” are the domain of religion. The domains and modes of enquiry may differ, but they are nonetheless quests for truth. Nietzsche's claim that 'God is dead' has profound implications: human life loses its intrinsic value, and the very notion of objective truth is dispensed with. Declaring the death of God kills both religion and science, and what we're left with is Scientism: unquestioning adherence to a secular dogma wherein human life can no longer be sacred. Scientism is neither religion nor science, but the absolute worst of both.

Comments, questions or suggestions welcome! email:


from inquiry

Treadmill at the moment: at first with some dumbbells action, but now merely fingertip flappery.

And then it will be lunchtime. Hopefully my wife will be done leading whatever meeting she's in by then so we can enjoy the bratwurst nutrients together. :–)


Okay, then... some previously cooked, vacuum-seals brats with my wife's pickled celery and cucumber. Glorious! Me so happy a cave wall shadow!

Nice breakthrough in leveraging some API calls at work. The crazed API does “paging” (i.e. returning larger amounts of data in smaller chunks, one chunk at a time) differently in this particular call than in others, so you bet there were some console.log() statements helping elucidate the situation.

The rain continues, albeit no longer in the nearly torrential zone as it was a couple hours ago.

We're completely out of the house purchase agreement, so now we wait upon fate to deliver the next potential dream.

We actually got a bit of head start on that yesterday afternoon after a winery visit, which led to our encountering a fascinating gentleman repairing some minor external details on a house he'd recently sold. It was rather amazing to meet a guy who thought so much like my wife with respect to social topics. And it sounds like he and his wife will soon be relocating to the outskirts of the city of my first college stint – sort of an added dollop of synchronicity, if you will.

I had me a significant Murphy's Law moment about half an hour after that. Not expecting to encounter that guy, my post-winery bladder wasn't going to make it home, so I pulled into a park, where I decided to urinate behind a couple porta-potties in case of COVID lingering therein, and managed to step in a leaf-concealed pile of dog shit in the process, leading to a lot of the kind of sideways foot scraping required to remove the most of it. Ugh.


from CBC

Denied Patriotism

CBC.WriteAs. com

As of late it's becoming more and more difficult to ignore the unfair and unnecessary obstacles that most Hispanics must essentially triumph over in order to simply make an honest living in a time and age where Hispanics are , dismissed and misunderstood due to the fact of the inability to distinguish on paper the differences between simple hard-working class families and the criminals trying to blend in and sneak their way in undetected. So instead of weighing all options Hispanics are simply categorized, stamped and labeled. It seems this country just won't learn. Just remember there will come a day when our children's children will look back on the events that are currently taking place. They are going to remember an ignorant and naive nation that seems to handle rough situation in the same manner a spoiled child throwing a tantrum would when things aren't going their way. As history in the U.S. tends repeats itself as we have witnessed time and time again. For example Native Americans, African Americans and now Hispanics. Usually followed by measly attempts decades later to compensate in a manner of speaking for decades of emotional distress, pain, and even genocide. For example the natives have now been given exclusive Casino rights and the land to go along with it. The African Americans too with receiving large amounts of money labeled “reparations”. Is this what we want to remember in the same manor as we frown upon when recalling the actions that took place not too long ago when segregation laws in place and were enforced on a daily basis to the full extent of the applicable law. If I'm not mistaken the original agreement for the sale of Mexican land (California) to the U.S. was with the condition that residents already inhabiting the land can come and go as they pleased. Then that section of the original agreement was later amended to the convenience of the U.S. SMH

CBC (🧀)


from Roscoe's Notebook

Now... and Then


NOW: This morning I registered for the Catholic Identity Conference 2020 which is taking place this weekend. The event is being live-streamed and I'll be watching many of the speakers as they give their presentations. The whole thing is being recorded so those parts I miss live I'll be able to catch later.

THEN: Several decades ago when I was younger, when I drove (I no longer drive – eyesight is shot, you know), and when I had the time and health to do such things, I attended many conferences similar to this in person. I found them in Chicago, in Louisville, different venues in Ohio, all Midwestern cities to which I could easily drive, check into a hotel and spend the weekend. Great experiences I remember fondly.

Times have changed now and so have I. And I find myself looking forward to this weekend's Conference enthusiastically.

The adventure continues.

Published on 23 October 2020, ~11:15 CDT, this is my post number 94/100/365 of the blogging challenge.

#100DaysToOffload #RoscoeEllis #microblog #SeniorLiving


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