Screen Shots & notes: Trying to add PHP to WordPress

Screen Shots: trying to add PHP to WordPress

So I have been all over the web learning about the differences between WordPress, Drupal and Joomla. Starting from nowhere in a short time I have picked up a huge chunk of big picture. I’ve completely redone this blog. Below is a screen shot of what this site looked like right after I added my other blogs to it but before I reconfigured the look.

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Prior to merging the other blogs onto this, it did not have the archives and it ended with about 4 basic pages, all of which were September 2012. I have just added RSS, or at least I see where and how to do that. I have added four entire large blogs with a full archive of cello events and gaming session notes dating back to 2004.

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I have played with code. I have struggled with FileZilla, which I suppose makes sense as the way to plug in the plug ins, but somehow I thought it would be right there in WordPress, where I looked so long and hard for Plug-Ins. While looking there I discovered Widgets. Previously I had no idea about most if not all of this stuff, what was where or how most if not all of it worked. I found the audio player which I might come back and add later…

Merging Blogs

So today I brought over (into this WordPress blog) my previous blogs from Blogger. Most of the entries are about D&D and playing the cello. The truth is that D&D and even playing the cello are not how I spend most of my time, but they were two separate, fairly focused blogs and off and on, I was pretty good about blogging after game sessions and gigs. Funny how when you read it here it ends up looking like I’m a ridiculously fanatical gamer and cellist (well, maybe a little fanatical.) Hey, everybody needs a hobby. Or two.

Now, what had been a tiny little WordPress blog with just a couple of short entries is gigantic by comparison to what it was before.

One thing that’s interesting is that when I put them all together here I can see that (for example) there were weekends where I had a game session and a gig within a short time of each other. Everything is organized chronologically now. Nowhere else but here on this WordPress blog do I have Cellodad and D&D lumped together; they are very very different things, each of which I happen to have been doing for a long time.

Another note, in case you’re wondering why there are more D&D entries than Cellodad entries: My cello gig notes are mainly just a journal for me to keep track of what people request, what I have been playing and how things went, etc. So for that I can blog or not blog about gigs, depending on time and my mood. On the other hand, my gaming blog is a way for players who might miss a game session or two to be able to catch up with the story as we go and it works very nicely that way — so long as I promptly blog while I remember what happened during that game. I find it difficult not to read my old entries over and over, replaying some fun times.

Oh, me.

Recent Awards

I suppose this is as good a place as any to mention that this year I won two (2) first place (1st) WNPA advertising awards, one for Humor and one for Youth this time. Although I’ve won other awards it’s rare and difficult to win a 1st, and winning multiples does not happen often. I would like to thank the Journal’s Graphic Designer, Will Adams and my customer, Olsen’s Furniture for their roles in helping to make this happen.

Dave Pierik aka Cellodad

Websites websites everywhere! I was looking again today at how many different blogs and websites I’ve posted and it is kind of astonishing how over the years how easily one person can end up with half a dozen or more personal websites. I’m going to put some links here, on yet another one.

I suppose there are no limits on what a person could do, especially since there are so many ways to make sites and blogs for free. Why not have a site or blog for every hobby?


Pandora – Tangerine Dream Radio

My favorite music while I study is something non-distracting, preferably with no lyrics. When I’m driving I listen to pop, alternative, talk radio or sometimes jazz or classical. But when I need to concentrate, I listen to a lot of Tangerine Dream, Vangelis, Jean-Michel Jarre, that kind of thing. A lot of people are into it now but I was what you might call an early adaptor, I have this stuff on vinyl from back in the day.

Long Live the… Who?

Lance’s high level campaign was very interesting Saturday. B, me (Dave), Mat & Ava, Rob, Rod, and Jesse B. enjoyed some political intrigue with good roleplay and then a good combat. Whitewall’s king has been missing for 4 days. Esmarelda is uneasy as are the other inner circle advisors. Queen Verisa pays the heroes of Whitewall their wages, 50,000 gp each. She is 8 months pregnant with the crown prince. She happens to be an elf. A tiefling appears almost out of nowhere. “Hey friend,” he says. He’s wearing fine clothes that are hanging off of him with about 3,000 years of dusty aging and seems not to care. He has been spying on our conversation in a routine and reckless way. His name is Carsh Tarkassis and the more he tries to gain trust the less he is trusted. He seems eager to help but Ruin is highly skeptical, this new guy seems slippery. Regarding the king, whenever questions are asked, members of the inner circle make uncomfortable faces, look away and change the subject. The curious among the heroes begin to quietly dig to learn what they can. Conspiracy theories abound: was King Leonid grabbed by a tentacle and dragged to the Far Realm? Did the orcs of Gorkni kidnap him? Or… dare we think the unthinkable and speculate the king could be dead? No one is saying anything. In the meantime, we are mercenaries with a new boss: Queen Verisa. As far as we are concerned that’s good enough for us. Our marching orders are to go to Gorkni and fight the orcs there. As we near the city we make some basic preparations to not be too obvious about or plans. Kontor encamps his 400 giants some distance away and prepares teleportation circles to bring them close when the time comes. Giants are not easy to hide otherwise. Carsh Tarkassis “befriends” a couple of orc scouts who are then slain anyway by Zuzu and Kontor. Carsh is not pleased, and neither is Esmarelda or Ruin because not only can we not question the scouts, Gorkni will know something is up when they don’t report in. So we will have to attack immediately this night and not in the morning as originally planned. So be it. Just before Ruin blows up Gorkni’s wall with his alchemical charges, B’s ranger makes a ladder out of arrows and Zuzu charges up them. The ranger and the fighter leap from the wall to the tower behind it right before it collapses inward on the enemy behind it. Atop the tower appear to be enemy commanders or dignitaries of some kind and Zuzu is making a beeline for them, right up the tower. On the other side of the wall it is not orcs who await the heroes, but mind flayers. The orcs are effectively their cattle, being bred and herded to fight for them but cattle nonetheless. The mind flayers are gigantic too, not typical and seem to be under the command of the dignitaries on the tower. 100′ or so atop the tower, Zuzu is fighting Dorsain, Dr. Wiley and Crotus. They should be much more than he can handle but he doesn’t care. Kontor summons a huge monster made of chains to join the fight up there but otherwise the party are focused on the mind flayers. The chain monster knocks Dorsain off of the tower and after he lands he is dominated by Carsh Tarkassis. Dr. Wiley and Dorsain are defeated, mind flayers are slain and tentacles from the Far Realm whisk Crotus and the remains of Dorsain and Dr. Wiley away. Zuzu is challenged by a bold orc survivor and defeats him in a single attack. Zuzu’s first act as new Warchief of Gorkni is to replace Gruumsh worship with Kord/Marishten. Yes, Gruumsh is not going to be happy about this! Ruin takes the heroes aside in a confidential meeting and reveals that King Leonid had lost his mind and was decapitated by his own personal guard, to save him from himself and preserve the kingdom of Whitewall. The king’s head has been preserved in a jar. The populous is not to know however. Currently the pregnant Queen Verisa and her advisors rule. Oh, and we’re learning more about Ruin and his strange re-occurances. He was slain by the mind flayers, but a new version of him appears before us bearing his memories and scars, including six black horns on his pale head to represent the mental damage inflicted by the mind flayers, now repaired. Replaced, more like it. But back to matters of the Crown. Succession might not be quite so simple. Esmeralda’s bastard son could contend for the throne in theory and other developments are possible. For now, Whitewall is holding together but it is spread thin across both geography and many alliances, races and powerful armies with huge differences: orcs, elves, giants, wildlings, dragons, dragonborn, humans, heroes, golems. And in Lance’s campaign resurrection is not a routine matter. Enemies without and rumors of intrigue within. Hmm. We are now 19th level and encouraged to make our characters pretty epic, within reason. We each get two +4 magic items.

White Wall (Lance’s high level)

The Battle at W H I T E W A L L (Lance’s campaign) The Faction of Brecken Ridge and White Wall are entangled in an arms race of epic proportion, involving dragons and worse. Of the five dragons, each the size of a city, White Wall now owns two: the green and the blue. Armies of incredible size and power are mustering, supported by magical arsenals the like of which has never been seen, and heroes such as have not walked the world in an age. The King of White Wall knows war is inevitable and much is at stake. Once again his kingdom is under attack. Another contingent of would-be defenders has come to him seeking employment. He has rejected so many meek, unworthy and unprepared warriors. How many have died already? He doesn’t have time to worry about it. Hopefully this group will be adequate. Tens of thousands of orcs and ogres and their allies advance on White Wall, screaming for blood. They are met by 400 giants, constructs, a hodgepodge of other forces, and a few amazing heroes who are insanely outnumbered. The armies fight upon a gigantic field 200 miles across. Occasionally the shadow of a dragon as large as a city darkens the battlefield. Often, gigantic black tentacles and eyestalks pop out of nothing into the air, slashing and grabbing at anything in sight. At the center of it all, the cause of this battle is the slippery figure, the Military Supplier (Shawn’s character, not here for this session) of King Leofrig Middleton, (Lance’s human warlord, level 16, or at least that’s the level we’re at). Among his advisers is The Old B-tch (Carson’s character, not here for this session) who knows it all, it would seem. She teaches and guides in a creepy way and is said to consort with the Far Realm. The King and his advisors watch the battle with interest from within the walls. Among the King’s protectors (and arguably the only one he needs) is Hector Custodes (Rob’s Revanent Paladin) who as payment for a past failure must defend his King unto death. Oh but that’s right, he cannot die. Hector just finished helping the King assess and hire these new heroes and he is about to see how they measure up. The King’s Hero is Esmarelda, the Paladin-Ranger (who is also Sar’in the Dragon Lady Sorceress; Rod’s shapeshifter has 5 personalities) who can single-handedly defeat entire armies when near groups of dragonborn. It is said she has never been seen at the same time as her friend, the psion Ethos. Though incredibly powerful, the rumor is that she has an equally powerful Far Realm nemesis. Sar’in defeated another entire army defending one of White Wall’s outlying cities just prior to the main battle. Now Esmarelda is slaying all around her, including one of the enemy heroes who had been flying on a griffin earlier. Among the heroes on the field is Zuzu (Mat’s 1/2 orc fighter) who passed the mustering trials by swearing allegiance to the King after having proven his ability by wounding Esmarelda in a practice fight. Now Zuzu is deep in the field, going after enemy commanders with gusto. It was Madame Eeyahh (P.’s human cleric) who healed Esmarelda after that mustering trial, by smacking her upside the face for being so stupid! This is a woman not to be trifled with, dark in complexion, standing 6’2″ tall and made 100% out of attitude. The cleric will patch together anyone else stupid enough to get hurt. Being healed by getting smacked and yelled at might just help in itself. Burning everything in sight from a safe distance is Rune (Ava’s warforged warlock). V’Ronica (Kayla’s drow ranger) is having a good time fighting this battle. Moving with grace, she avoids injury while her attackers drop all around her. Ruin (Jesse’s white elf rogue) is closely associated with the throne room and was an advisor during the mustering trials. He arrived mysteriously by boat, having been sent by the men in black organization. Now, Ruin is out there in the battlefield somewhere, mostly unseen as the enemy drop with equal mystery. The giant wrangler arrived somewhat unexpectedly from the hinterlands, claiming to be Emperor Kontor Smidge Lokag, G-d Emperor of the Giants (Dave’s goliath wizard). Accompanying him are 200 fire giants and 200 earth titan giants. After initially requesting an alliance of empires, Kontor kneels before King Leofrig because the truth is they are down to half rations. “We were hungry,” he says simply upon being asked why he joined. Giants do eat a lot, as the carcasses of a herd of sheep consumed the night before battle attest. The giants obey Kontor’s commands without question, as he is their tactician and wizard and also because he possesses the crown of their ancient king, the Eye of the Old G-ds. Kontor found the Eye accidentally while seeking other magical knowledge and spells. He stands nearly 8’ tall (okay, 7’7”) as is normal for a goliath, but his friends among the giants call him Smidge because to them he’s a pretty small giant. In battle Kontor wields a storm spells and a tome that summons nasty creatures such as the Stormstone Fury, which in turn damages foes at a distance with thunder attacks. Because he specializes in ranged magical attacks, in this battle Kontor fights from atop the crenellated white wall of White Wall itself. His giants operate fearsomely on their own, having been given simple guidelines, tactics and instructions earlier (mostly involving who would stand in close combat and who would stay back and throw rocks). The golem wrangler, Shar-I-Zaard (Jon’s shardmind artificer) brings forth clouds of mechanical spiders that give the orcs and ogres fits, then commands a few very tough looking magical, mechanical soldiers to stand and fight in a straight line in front of him. By the end of the battle, the the strange crystalline artificer is completely untouched. The battle is fierce but the invisible siege devices of the orc army are not found in time to save one of White Wall’s towers. It falls atop the final enemy commander who is flung beneath it by Esmarelda. But the fall of his tower dismays the king who is happy the battle is won by his army but gives the tower and its former inhabitants a heartfelt eulogy. Kontor, who climbed that very grand tower on his way to the top of the wall, puts his giants to work replacing the original materials where they go, guided by a prolonged illusion from a scroll provided by the king’s wizards, of the tower as it appeared when it was standing. Though many have died, the orcs might be a bit crestfallen because by appearances from a distance, the tower is somehow still standing after all.