Archive for the ‘Serene Adventure’ Category

Ok, I need to address these reports of LeBron James’ interest in the Boston Celtics   Leave a comment

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…There is absolutely NO WAY it can happen UNLESS LBJ agress to a playing for far less than he’s worth AND Kyrie Irving is ok with it. That second point is important BECAUSE playing with LBJ is why Uncle Drew asked the Cavs to trade him. So, they did. Playing with LBJ for 1 game is different from playing with him for a whole season + playoffs.

As a reminder, the Celtics blew up the team during the last offseason just to sign Gordon Hayward. Kyrie Irving came to Boston via the trade I just mentioned in exchange for Isaiah Thomas (Traded to the Lakers mid-season), Jae Crowder (Traded to the Jazz mid-season), Ante Zizic (Drafted by the Celtics but was never activated) and the Brooklyn pick. The Cavs just got swept by the Warriors in the NBA Finals so…yeah.

Only four players from last year’s Celtics team returned this season: Marcus Smart, Al Horford, Jaylen Brown and Terry Rozier. Everyone else was either drafted (Jayson Tatum, etc.), traded for (Irving, Marcus Morris, etc.) or signed (Hayward, etc.) to replace the liquidated pieces. The difference between this an what the Celtics did in 2007 and 2012 is the Celtics stayed competative. That’s why even without Hayward and later Irving, the Celtics were a game away from going to the NBA Finals without both of them.

It’s like I said before: Next season, the Eastern Conference goes through Boston. Period. Everyone except Greg Monroe (signed to replace Hayward for the rest of the season + Playoffs using the Disabled Player Exception and is automatically an Unrestricted Free Agent now) and likely Aaron Baynes (Unrestricted Free Agent) will be back next year. This isn’t like last year and 2008 when the Celtics had alot of expiring contracts and pieces to move to sign Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen and more recently Al Horford and Gordon Hayward. The current squad is locked in for next year.

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Irving’s contract expires after next season and everyone knows this. If the Celtics seriously entertains signing LBJ knowing LBJ is why he wanted out of Cleveland…yeah. There’s also the fact the Celtics don’t have the money to pay LBJ what he’s worth anyway. There is breaking news Kyrie Irving announced he has not commited to resigning with Boston when his contract expires after next season. I would assume he is following the reports LBJ might try to cut a deal with Danny Ainge to sign with the Celtics this offseason. That would be a HUGE factor in weather he negotiates a new contract with Boston or not.

Obviously Ainge and Celtics owners would want to make sure LBJ would work with their system and LBJ would have to agree to that + taking a pay cut for a prettymuch guaranteed trip back to the NBA Finals. Let’s say the Celtics decide to take a serious shot at getting LBJ and Kyrie is ok with it as well. Obviously both Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum would be moved. We already know the other 29 teams want both of them so…yeah. Don’t forget Marcus Smart will definitely be back next year as well.

So, the Celtics starting 5 would look something like this:

 

  1. Al Horford (Daniel Theis)
  2. Gordon Hayward (Marcus Morris)
  3. LeBron James (Jayson Tatum)
  4. Kyrie Irving (Terry Rozier)
  5. Marcus Smart (Jaylen Brown)

I put the reserves for them in parenthesis. It assumes the Celtics can figure out a way to sign LBJ without giving up Brown and Tatum. Not saying it would be impossible, just prettymuch impossible. LOL.

So, yeah. I think these teams are more likely to get LBJ for various reasons:

  • Cavs
  • Knicks
  • 76ers
  • Lakers
  • Rockets
  • Spurs

 

At the end of the day, LBJ will keep everyone waiting to know where he’ll go just because he can. He’s being coy but he knows everyone wants to know what team he plans to play on next season. He did it twice before. He could even sign with a team no one is even thinking about. He has strong ties to Los Angeles and Cleveland obviously so…yeah.

Relative to the Celtics…nah, it’s just not worth moving Tatum and Brown for LBJ. Plus Kyrie Irving’s decision next year will be a talked about until he makes up his mind. The Celtics will likely do the same thing Cleveland did with LBJ and plan for him leaving after next year until proven otherwise. It would be the smart thing to do. They certainly won’t make the same mistake OKC did with Kevin Durant and didn’t have a “What if he decides to leave?” Plan, which he obviously did. Plus unlike OKC and the Cavs, the Celtics will still have both Horford and Hayward regardless. Hayward will likely finish his career in Boston (Or at least as long as Brad Stevens is Head Coach) and Horford could probably be convinced to do the same without much effort (It certainly helps he is a close friend of Red Sox legend David Ortiz, who told him to sign with the Celtics two years ago).

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It appears my Unemployment Streak will FINALLY be ending soon   Leave a comment

Two years is a LONG time for someone with my skillset and experience to be Unemployed. That’s what September 8 would mark. As of this afternoon, I probably won’t be Unemployed on that date. I have received the first of what I expect to be several requests for an in-person interview today. I don’t want to disclose the company yet since like I just said, I am expecting to interview for multiple jobs in a short amount of time.

What I will say is should I be hired, I would be working full-time from Sunday to Thursday. This would be true of the other companies I’ve submitted applications for online. Which companies?

These:

  • UNOs Restaurant
  • The Cheesecake Factory
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Shaws Supermarket
  • Star Market Supermarket
  • GameStop
  • Best Buy
  • AMC Theatres

…I am obviously pulling out all the stops to get employed compared to last year. Having a job is an effective treatment for depression. Having income means no longer reliant on government assistence. This is to say nothing of the perks that come with working for most of the above companies from discounted food or groceries to insider info on upcoming releases. So…yeah.

Of the above, the closest to me is Shaws. Barnes & Noble, UNO, GameStop and Cheesecake Factory are all in the Prudential Center or across from it in the case of UNO and GameStop. Star Market is next to the Prudential Center while AMC is across from Boston Common. The ones I applied for open positions at anyway. All of them I can get to one of two ways from my current address as well.

I have goals in life. I do plan to go back to school eventually but right now I have other priorities. Once my situation becomes stable–and I expect the process to take 3 to 12 months once I am employed–I feel like I will be back to where I was mentally and emotionally before the spring of 2014.

This Maine man killed in a hit and run accident was himself a involved in a hit and run accident 50 years earlier   Leave a comment

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Well, you know what they say about irony. This is Douglas Parkhurst, who died yesterday protecting children in a hit and run accident. The driver involved–Carrol Sharrow–fled the scene but was arrested shortly afterward and is now behind bars. She’ll get her day in court soon enough.

Before you call this Vietnam vet a hero, here’s someone else you should know about.

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This is 4 year old Carolee Ashby. She died in a hit in run accident on Halloween night in Fulton, New York back in 1968. Had she lived, she would be 54 years old today. The driver involved in that accident was Parkhurst. A witness came forward in 2013 and that led investigators to Parkhurst, who confessed to being the driver involved in Ashby’s death.

Since the statue of limitations had long since expired, no charges were ever filed. Then yesterday, Parkhurst died in more or less the same way Ashby did back in 1968 and under similar circumstances. I imagine he had a flashback to that night just before he did and likely accepted his death with dignity knowing he robbed a 4 year old girl of a full life 50 years earler. The obvious difference is unlike Ashby, Parkhurst’s killer will be going to court and face the charges he should have faced for Ashby’s death in 1968. I’m talking the exact same charges.

I’ll stop short of saying he got away with murder. Yes, the statue of limitations had run out but in the end he paid for his crime…with his life.

It is not uncommon for this kind of thing to happen as folks know. I mean folks guilty of manslaughter later dying the same way their victim did. This story caught my attention because although Ashby was denied justice, Parkhurt’s punishment fit his crime. The truth came out five years ago. I do wonder if Ashby’s family or the media from Fulton, NY paid him a visit looking for answers. He almost got away with murder so…yeah.

The Celtics continue to prove doubters wrong, take 2-0 series lead to Cleveland   Leave a comment

Image result for Marcus Morris yells at Tristan Thompson

 

The stat ESPN started throwing out there halfway through the 4th Quarter: The last time LeBron James was down 2-0 vs. the Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals, it was in 2008. The Celtics went on to win the series and the NBA Championship vs. the Lakers in 6 games.

…The difference is back then, The Celtics had 3 All Stars. This time it’s been their young players taking point in the absence of Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward (as well and Daniel Theis). Now the pundits are rightfully saying what Celtics fans have been saying since Irving and Hayward came to Boston last summer: The Eastern Conference runs through Boston. Not next year but now.

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To say LBJ’s leaving Cleveland again goes without saying. As for where he might end up this time, he will likely want to join a contender again so that means it will likely be one of the following teams:

 

  • Cleveland: LBJ’s current team got the #8 pick in the 2018 Draft Lottery, which they received from the Celtics along with Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder (Both traded mid-season) and Ante Zizic in exchange for Kyrie Irving. The Cavs have clearly been making moves since the offseason independent of whatever LBJ decides so clearly the team is positioning itself to be in the playoff picture with or with him. LBJ reportedly asked that Irving not be traded. Irving reportedly threatened to have elective surgery if he was not traded, LBJ’s wishes be damned (LOL). It would be fair to say LBJ would stay with the Cavs as a last resort.
  • Boston: Let’s be real, the Eastern Conference runs through the Celtics now. Not next year but now. The Celtics can make that claim after they finish off LBJ and the Cavs but at this point it’ll be a formality. Next year the team will be at full power with the return of Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward. Having said that, could LBJ pull a Kevin Durant and join the NBA’s newest Super Team just to play with Kyrie Iving again? Sure, but unlikely. For one, the Celtics don’t have the money to pay him after they signed Hayward and Al Horford. The Celtics blew up the team just to sign Hayward as a reminder. Plus, there IS the fact Uncle Drew didn’t want to play with him anymore. LOL.
  • Philadelphia: Many have picked the 76ers as the most likely team in the Eastern Conference LBJ would go to. LBJ going there would mean both Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid would have reduced roles on the floor with him in the lineup. That would be a big X-Factor just to compete with the Celtics in the ECF.
  • New York: The Knicks haven’t had a deep playoff run since the 90s but then they ran into Michael Jordan and later the Orlando Magic before they fell off completely. It’s been far longer since the Knicks last won a Championship. Having just hired former Grizzlies Head Coach David Fizdale to coach the team, LBJ would be the star power the Knicks could use to Make the Knicks Great Again. LOL.
  • Toronto: What’s this? Go to a team you just swept out the payoffs?! Well, Kyrie Irving did it last year after the Cavs beat Boston in 5 games. It is a stretch though not improbable. More so givien after the Head Coach was fired, there is speculation DeRozan or Lowry or both could be traded during the offseason.
  • San Antonio: Experts don’t think LBJ will leave the Eastern Conference but if he does go West, the Spurs are believed to be one of two teams he’s most likely to go to. It would be as boon for the team given Kawhi Leonard is expected to be leaving for another team, likely East.
  • LA Lakers: Goes without saying this is the most likely team in the West for two reasons. One is he recently bought a house in LA. The other is Magic Johnson has been laying to groundwork to get LBJ, Paul George possibly Kawhi Leonard as well. The sad irony is a deal to bring LBJ to the Lakers could jeopardize Isaiah Thomas’ chances of getting a new contract. It could also mean Lonzo Ball and/or Brandon Ingram are kicked out of the starting five as well.
  • Golden State: See what I put for Boston. ‘Nuff said.

 

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The Celtics weathered the early storm in the first Quarter and dared LBJ to will the Cavs to victory. He could not. Now with the series shifting to Cleveland for the next two games, even LBJ’s biggest fanboy–ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith–plainly stated “If the Cavs lose Game 3 they’ll probably get swept.” He also plainly said the Celtics are the better team and would match up well against the Rockets or Warriors. Speaking of, the Western Conference finals is tied 1-1 with Game 3 on Sunday in Oakland (Golden State).

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If I’m a betting man, it will be Warriors vs. Celtics in the NBA Finals. Celtics will close out the Cavs in 5 or 6 if they don’t sweep. Warriors will beat the Rockets in 6 games. Let me tell you, this would be a MONSTER series in the NBA Finals. Draymon Green vs. Marcus Smart would be fun to watch as would KD and Tatum.

 

Celtics on the verge of sweeping The 76ers out of the playoffs   Leave a comment

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To say this Celtics team defied all expectations would be a MASSIVE understatement. They put down Giannis and the Bucks in 7 games in the first round of the playoffs. Now they’re on the verge of sweeping the very team everyone outside New England picked to go to the NBA Finals out of the playoffs.

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…Yes, THAT  team. “Trust The Process”? Process Failed. LOL.

Now, the obvious question to be asked is how did the Boston Celtics, who are without 2 of their 3 All Stars get to this point?

This is how:

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…Great coaches think alike.

Local media spied Celtics Head Coach Brad Stevens hanging out with Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick in Foxboro last summer during the Patriots training camp. The NBA Summer League had ended, Gordon Hayward signing with Boston became official and the Isiaiah Thomas for Kyrie Irving trade was about to go down. The Celtics made it to the Eastern Conference Finals last year but lost to the Cleveland Caveliers in 5 games (who themselves lost to the Golden State Warriors in 5 games in the NBA Finals). After the Celtics lost the series, Brad Stevens said in the postgame press conference he considered anything short of winning the NBA Championship a failure to be learned from.

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Everyone knows Gordon Hayward went down with a ankle nasty injury in the season open against the Cavs. It was a season-ending injury but fortunately not career-ending. Everyone wrote off the Celtics’ season at that point. Then the Celtics went on a 17-game win streak. Kyrie Irving missed several games earlier in the season due to injury and is out for the postseason after having knee surgery in March. Everyone wrote off the Celtics getting out of the first round at that point.

…Big mistake.

The Philosophy in Boston Sports is and always has been “Next Man Up.”

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Nowhere has this been more apparent than Celtics Rookie Jayson Tatum and Sophmore team mate Jaylen Brown. Both were drafted third by the Celtics, much to the surprise of everyone. Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball were both drafted Second by the Lakers.

…Who were drafted first?

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These two.

Ben Simmons, who was drafted last year missed the whole 2016-17 NBA Season after breaking his hand during the Summer League. Markelle Fultzm who was drafted this year hasn’t played a single game this season because he doesn’t feel 100%. There’s nothing physically wrong with him. It’s all in his head. So, yeah.

The 76ers were overhyped and the Lakers failed to make the playoffs. LOL. As a reminder: Both teams–The Sixers and the Lakers–tanked HARD so they could get the top draft picks, ending up with Ball, Ingram, Simmons and Fultz respectively. The Celtics took the Nets’ future from them via the trade that sent Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to Brooklyn back in 2012 and held it until they dealt it and Isaiah Thomas to Cleveland last year as part of the trade that brought Kyrie Irving to Boston. While the Sixers and Lakers tanked on purpose to get the first two picks, the Celtics could safely stay competative while the took the Nets’ picks.

…The Process is a failure. LOL.

The Sixers were able to hold off the sweep tonight but you can be certain the Celtics will close out the series in Boston on Wednesday. It will be a repeat of last year’s ECF between the Celtics and the Cavs, who could close out their series with the Toronto Raptors tonight. Or if the Raptors hold off elimination, the Celtics and Cavs will start on Sunday.

The Korean War to officially end 65 years later   Leave a comment

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The Korean War (1950-1953) will always be remembered as the first modern proxy war. Although a ceasefire was signed in 1953, no peace treaty had ever been signed so technically the war never officially ended. The outcome of the war had lasting consequences not just for the region but the balance of power over the last 65 years. North Korea would have 3 leaders–Kim il Sung, Kim Jong Il and Kim Jong Un–all from the same family since the Korean War ended in 1953. South Korea would have 8 presidents in the same span of time.

Think about that.

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History will record the 2018 Winter Olympics as the watershed moment that led the formal signing of the Peace Treaty on Thursday, officially ending the Korean War. In December, South Korea invited North Korean athletes to compete with them as one unified Korean Team in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Peong Chang, South Korea. After the Olympics ended, the door was opened for dialogue between the leaders of North and South Korea.

That was the opportunity for common ground former NBA Superstar Dennie Rodman, who is a friend of North Korea’s Kim Jong Un said would one day come a few years ago. Rodman was vilified in the media for not using his friendship with North Korea’s dictator to advocate for the release of westerners being held prisoner in North Korea. He made it clear he was no diplomat and was no negotiator. These were not the purpose of his visits to North Korea, which can only be entered via China and only with written permission from the North Korean government. It’s no fair to say he has been vindicated for what he said at the time.

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…This is history.

This is North Korea’s Kim Jong Un and South Korea’s Moon Jae-In. This is the first time the leaders of both countries have met ever and they have only been talking for a few months now. The two leaders met at the DMZ Boarder where Kim Jong Un crossed into South Korea to a throng of excited international journalists and soldiers from both countries. The two formally signed a peace treaty as the world watched in amazement. In the span of about 8 months, what was long considered the most hostile country in the world had taken its first steps to lasting peace in the region.

Contrary to what #45’s fans said at an event Saturday afternoon–they chanted “Nobel!” at him–#45 and the U.S. had NOTHING to do with the peace talks between North and South Korea. In fact, he said he plans to walk out of a planned summit that will involve all three leaders (Trump, Moon and Un) “If he feels like it.” So, yeah. Let’s not give credit to a person or country that not only doesn’t deserve it but had a hand in the war that split the Korean Penninsula in two in the first place. Plus it will be a very bad look for the U.S. should #45 walk out as he has threatened to do.

South Korea became Democratic and like Japan after World War II, fell under the military protection of the U.S. Unlike Japan, South Korea was not only allowed to keep their military but they received a blank check from the U.S. to bolster their military along the boarder with North Korea. On that note. Every year since the end of the Korean War, the U.S. would do joint military exercises with South Korea as a “show of force” to North Korea (and by extension China). South Korea requested the planned exercise for this year be postponed as formal talks between the North and South began.

North Korea became Communist with the guidance of the Soviet Union and later China. It would come to be known as the most secretive country on the planet and hasn’t changed much since the end of the Korean War. Foreigm Journalists who are allowed into the country from time to time are followed by “Government Minders”, government officials who “escort” them from within the country. Not only does one need permission to enter North Korea but one also needs permission to leave the country. It’s death to those who are caught trying to illegally cross into South Korea, China or Russia (which all boarder North Korea) as well as their families in many cases. Foreign nationals arrested at the boarder are usually given harsh sentences for the purposes of propaganda.

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…This picture of the Korean Peninsula highlights the disparaties between the two countries. The South is modern while the North has little to no infratructure to speak of. Such is to be expected of a country that has closed its boarders to the world and is wary of who or what it lets in or out.

This is to speak nothing of the recent problems that have started to trickle out of North and is likely why Kim Jong Un has taken steps to shut down the country’s Nuclear Weapons research:

 

  • There has been a sharp increase in North Korean soldiers deserting and crossing into South Korea from North Korea in the last year.
  • There have been increased instances of North Korean soldiers allowing North Korean nationals to cross into South Korea. North Korean soldiers have orders to shoot on sight anyone trying to cross into South Korea.
  • Reports of famines and food shortages in North Korea are nothing new but things have reached crisis-level that even North Korean officials are not immune from.
  • Medical examinations and autopsies performed North Korean defectors and the bodies of those who died shortly after crossing into South Korea have revealed digestive diseases and illnesses are rampant. Cholera, Dysentery and tapeworms to name a few.
  • Rumors have been rampant for years that North Korea’s First Lady Ri Sol-Ju–formerly a government cheerleader–may be sterile and has failed multiple times to produce an heir since their marriage. Her sudden disappearance from the public eye until recently fueled speculation she had join the members of the Kim family who were executed. She joined her husband for the Inter-Korean Summit held in South Korea.

Things have reached the point it where would be fair to now say North Korea is a failed state. Unlike Afghanistan at the end of 2001 however, the transition will obviously be different. Other dictatorships would dig in deeper in this kind of situation but Kim Jong Un has instead begun moving to open the country to the world. These are interesting times not just for the region but the world and most importantly, the Korean Peninsula.

My guess is North Korea will likely go the same as Cuba in some regards and China in others in regards to human rights. Kim Jong Un is clearly preparing the country for life without him running it. Of the 3 possible successors after his father passed away, he was chosen simply because he was still in the country and was of age. He was the youngest of Kim Jong Il’s three sons and one of who who was in North Korea when their father passed away about 10 years ago. One brother, who was living in Malaysia had little interest in politics while the other, who was in the country was deemed unfit for rule.

So, the youngest son became the new leader of North Korea by default. It seemed he would continue where his father left off but Kim Jong Un has made many efforts to counter and even conflict with those who supported his father’s regime. A few years back, he personally executed his uncle, who was his top advisor along with other senior staff to head off a rumored coup being planned.

Having secured absolute power, the Nuclear Weapons program he developed deep underground appears to have been his way of heading off further dissent within the military. It would seem he never actually intended to make a nuke as his father did even though he did progress much further than the world thought he would. And now he’s shutting down said Nuclear Weapons program. More than likely Kim Jong Un is preparing to open North Korea to the world for the first time since the end of the Korean War.

The needs of the North Korean people are many to say the least. We’re talking about a whole nation that was isolated from the outside world for 65 years. If and only if the world comes together, the current generation of North Koreans might be able to chart their own desitinies.

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These songs helped me get through the last 12 months   Leave a comment

…For those who didn’t know, today is my birthday. I would’ve posted this sooner but I was at Anime Boston until about 2 hours ago. That’ll be my whole weekend. LOL.

Anywho, here are 15 songs I have listened to quite alot since my last birthday. No doubt most of these will surprise you:

15. Despacito by Luis Fonsi feat. Daddy Yankee
14. Team Skull Theme from Pokemon Sun/Moon and Pokemon UltraSun/UltraMoon
13. Lost in Thoughts All Alone by Reina Strober (Fire Emblem Fates)
12. Some Bodies Gonna Get It (WWE Hall of Famer Mark Henry’s Entrance Music)
11. The Future (WWE Superstar Asuka’s Entrance Music)
10. The Rising Sun (WWE Superstar Shinsuke Nakamura’s Entrance Music)
9. Champion by The Roots
8. River in the Desert by Lyn (Persona 5)
7. Wake Up, Get Up, Get Out There by Lyn (Persona 5 OP)
6. Beneath the Mask by Lyn (from Persona 5)
5. The Hero!! by The JAM Project (One Punch Man Season 1 OP)
4. History Maker by Dean Fujioka (Yuri!!! On Ice OP)
3. Mother Africa by The African Children’s Choir
2. N’kosi Siekele Afrika (God Bless Africa) – South Africa’s National Anthem
1. Unto Us (Isaiah 9) by Sandi Patti

…I believe this is the first time I have put together a list that didn’t include anything Michael Jackson. All of these songs are on my iPod as well. My playlist is very…international to say the least. Feel free to look up all of these if you’d like. My reasons for putting all of these songs on the list has a story and I will update this post to explain after the weekend.

For now, here’s 3 of the songs courtesy of YouTube:

 

…Update to this post to come sometime next week.

Also, please donate via PayPal if you are able. I’m mostly saying that because it’s my birthday but really, it would be appreciated ^_^

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