Between Two Ferns goes down under.

I haven’t had much experience writing clickbait, so I thought I’d give it a try.

Fabric Of Nation’s Identity Hangs In The Balance.

Meh. ZOMG, flag change. This is terrible news for fans of quality journalism NZ-wide. Water coolers and the NZ twittersphere will be similarly shocked by the erosion of the mana of their prime topic of conversation. I shouldn’t be giving this the time of day, but let’s face it, I never have anything interesting to write about. Might as well continue the trend. The nation’s flag is in jeopardy. Shock, horror and scoffing en masse. Let’s get things established. This whole “changing the flag” concept only gets trundled out when a government wants to obfuscate some other topic or change a law without public consent.

What else is happening to distract people? My first instinct as someone not remotely news savvy is the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement. Are there any other law changes or quick sales our cabinet would like to affect before the election? I’m sure ordinary citizens would get in the way of something like that if they knew the extent of it (who am I kidding? The biggest news stories this country faces are rude reality TV judges and fast selling chocolate milk). Instead, like a matador our government has waved a couple of flags in front to catch their attention. Unfortunately, people are so apathetic to the lacklustre designs that the tired effect of this idea has worn off. Maybe National needs to call in another Marmageddon to really rally the people. Hit the country where it hurts and they’ll bleed black, yeasty blood. Does it have anything to do with some archaic laws? Will changing the flag, silly smokescreen as it is, actually have substantive ramifications for the legal system?

Whatever. I’m not a warring, political fellow and sadly the fate of a country I don’t plan to visit any time soon without coercion doesn’t immediately bother me, so I’ll drop the faux slacktivist angle. A flag is a meaningless concept to rally socially constructed ideals. It matters about as much as gender does and we’re at the genesis of those concepts being turned over. I can’t pretend to care. It’s silly that the government is pumping near $26 million into a referendum that few really care about. Even sillier are the designs they’ve picked out. The Prime Minister and the captain of the All Blacks have put their weight behind something with the silver fern on it. A country with more sheep than people is hardly likely to raise a dissenting opinion to something deemed proper by sporting royalty, so that’s probably decided already. It’s a pity. I thought one of the founding ideas of this whole referendum was to replace outdated ties to the British monarchy with a symbol that reflected our rich indigenous heritage. Of all the designs submitted that reflected Maori culture, they could’ve chosen something more striking and emblematic than the Koru design.

Seriously, of the 40 or so in the short list, why these milquetoast four choices? Is it because they wanted to reinstiate faith in our current flag purely by rejection of its challengers? Will people be voting solely out of spite for these dregs? Like another comedy farce, will the choice simply be Between Two Ferns? Was this whole hubbub worth our time and $26 million? Whatever it was you wanted to distract us from John, I hope it was worth that much at least.

 

Yes, the word “adultery” would’ve given this a whole different tone.

Uhhhh. I’ve spent several minutes staring blankly at this blank page. It’s the least productive way to work through my 30 minutes of daily writing. Even typing the same word over and over would at least fill up some kind of imaginary word quota that makes me feel like I’ve put the barest amount of effort in. I’d feel some sense of accomplishment knowing that I’d been active even if it wasn’t compelling stuff. No I thought, I’m not gonna commit words to the page unless they’re worth reading for somebody. Buuuut then I wrote everything above, which has no worth to anyone, so it all came out in the wash.

Why am I so exhausted? Well I’ve been productive adulting. I’ll draw a distinction between adulting and adultery, because it’s worth noting. Adulting means the girlfriend and I went to IKEA and picked up all manner of things to trick people into thinking we’re doing ok at this older human business. We got flashy new pillows, a mattress protector, a shoe rack and incidental little household objects. How adult is that? My shoes now have somewhere presentable and practical to live. We can use vertical space to our advantage. I knew there was a reason we left flatland for this extra dimension. Because shoes needed somewhere to sleep. We also got frozen yoghurt, because adult or not, leaving IKEA without it is foolish in any dimension.

It’s all well and good having all of these things, but how convincing is an adult façade if everyone can’t see the presentable nature of all your adult stuff? You’ve gotta show it off like any of it actually matters. To keep up the illusion we needed several things: A fridge/pantry full of nutritional food, a clean kitchen/bathroom and floors cleared of shiftless sediment. Off to the supermarket we marched, grabbing cheese, fruit and vegetables, breakfast materials and tinned beans (and every free sample we could get our hands on. Today’s buffet involved 7 or 8 different cured meats and huge scoops of locally made ice cream). Adults also brunch, so out of pure necessity we dined on eggs, cheese, toast and grilled garlic tomatoes. In all honesty, I was just looking for a flimsy excuse to eat marmite.

Then we spent a good hour or two just cleaning things. Floors needed vacuuming and mopping. The shower had gone so long without scrubbing that we’d developed an ecosystem of black mould. I’ve no wish to go the way of Brittany Murphy, so a black mould genocide was in order. In the mean time, my girlfriend tackled the layers of scum growing on the stovetop, bench and sink. Disposing of all the garbage, washing the sheets and working through the IKEA shoe rack instructions brought us to the finish line. Success, our ruse of adult competence was complete.

Over the past few years I’ve been searching for signs that I’m growing up, ageing, moving towards whatever stage comes next. It dawned on me over the course of this effort that we were faking adulting by adulting for real. It’s happening. I gave serious consideration to my credit card points system, for fuck’s (and free groceries’) sake. I caught myself using the word “our” in lieu of “my” when talking about the place where I live. If that’s not a portent of development, I’m gonna need a super obvious sign.

Then again, I’m about to go to a bar to heckle the Super Mario Bros movie, so all is not lost quite yet.

Change I can believe in.

It was likely in high school English class that I first learned about themes and motifs running through narratives. Central concepts a writer would try and convey over the course of a text. Sly little nods here and there or obvious plot points with all the subtlety of a sledgehammer. These planted moments summed up into an overarching conceit. It’s a gripping way to form a story and helps bring the reader along for the ride. It’s becoming increasingly apparent in the tale of my life that I have a central conceit. I have no realistic idea of how much things should cost.

Maybe my pricing is stuck back in the 90s. When my relationship with money was being formed, I knew what the price of fish was. Inflation be damned, I’d drilled into my noggin how much things cost and that was that. As time has ticked and money incrementally has been worth less, my opinions on the matter haven’t changed. Now I’m stuck in a rut where I don’t buy things that often because my expectations are off base. I shudder to think how generations removed feel about paying $20 for a film and ice cream these days, a far cry from their 2c movies with 1c dairy treats. That kind of inflation blows my mind sky high. That’s 666.6 (reoccurring) times what it used to cost. How much was fish in those days?

The area where this came up for me lately was buying sexy underwear. If I want something more impressive than my standard boxer briefs, it’s natural to assume that they’ll cost more. I’m on board with that. It’s tricky though, knowing precisely how much. I have no metric for this kind of scale. What kind of price do you put on sex appeal? If my basic Kirkland briefs cost $13 for 4 pairs, how much should I be willing to part with for one pair of sexy appealing ones? Looking around at brands like Calvin Klein, Jockey, etc, the going price seemed to be around $30 for one pair. Animated as I act sometimes, I’m not a literal cartoon, so my eyeballs didn’t physically leave my head. Internally it felt like my eyes were shaking their heads in disapproval. Being a price curmudgeon, it’s rare for me to ever purchase something at full price. I looked for some others in a more pleasing price range, say at least 50% off. After some time the best I could find for something that looked worth a few shekles more was $12 for a pair. That’s a singular pair of boxer briefs, not 2 boxer briefs. Though I bought 2 pairs, so there we are. Confusing. Is that a realistic price? Was I still paying too much? In the end, was I paying for a brand, an aesthetic or attaching a dollar amount to sexual self-confidence?

Any discussion of money is gonna devolve into how “money” is an abstract concept. The worth of money is fluid and continually depreciating. Attaching value to a price then, is erroneous in itself. Somehow still, I always feel like my money should be worth more than it is. A strange self-inflated notion, in what society would that be given credence? Am I inferring self-importance to currency? Others are happy to pay the set price, but I’m not? Or does my adherence to capitalism mean that I’m attaching value in the form of a non-specific dollar amount to doing work? In this scenario, the work is shopping around, searching for the best price. My reward is the lower price than those who aren’t willing to put the time or effort in? Fuuuuuck me. We need a new workable system.

I think I need a price and reality check. How much should things cost and how do I bring my internal database in line with the rest of the last few decades? I’ve seen The Muppet Christmas Carol, I know what happens to Scrooge and I don’t want a spirit visit if I can help it.

It’s canal or never. Inguinious.

This update is gonna involve talk of body parts and things of a sexual nature, so if that’s not your bag perhaps you should come back tomorrow.

As for the rest of you, I just learned something exciting. Quick question, how often do you find out that you’ve got a body part you never knew existed? Furthermore, how often does that body part end up being something you can use for sexual pleasure? If any of you are like me, you probably feel like some leprechaun just took you by the hand and dropped you at the end of the rainbow. Does it taste like skittles? It may kill the buzz for some of you, but this will only be relevant to your own body if you were born with a penis. Sorry. Though if you’re a vagina owning person who likes playing with penises, this could be something fun for you to play with if your partner is willing.

The words “inguinal canal” are probably not news to any trans women out there, but being a basic bitch cis dude they were all new to me. I mean, I knew canals existed, just not inside of me. What these things are is the space where a scrotum’s balls hung out before they decided to hang out. Once the balls descend, they expand in size and do their thing. The canal still exists, mostly forgotten. I say mostly, because if you’ve ever heard of a trans woman “tucking”, this is where they’re tucking. ” But Leon” you say “what was that whole expansion business? How do they fit? Practice. And stretching. When they’re vacated though, they can be used like an ersatz male vagina. The process of inserting stuff into them is known as “muffing” (the term to Google if you want to find someone wiser and more experienced to explain it).

Finding them on yourself is tough, even if you know what you’re looking for. My girlfriend was poking around for a while and neither of us actually knew if we’d found them. After some time we found unmistakable little rings no bigger than the width of my pinky finger that gave a bit when pushed. The canals run diagonally upwards away from the sides of your penis. Obviously there’s no break in the skin, but the hole feels like it’s deeper the more you apply pressure. If you’re interested it’s well worth looking up diagrams to guide the way. Having a partner to do some exploring certainly helped too.

I found it to be a weird sensation. Not painful and not hugely pleasurable, but somewhere in between. There were some nerves that felt like they might feel titillated if I could just get a little deeper. The person in the instructional video we found could fit a strap on in there, so practice surely counts for something. It’s interesting to discover something new about your body and the best part is there are no messy fluids or anything. Lube would probably help you to press deeper and really get to those pleasurable nerve clusters. As I’m no experienced spelunker, I implore scrotum owners to give it a try. If you manage to get to the bottom of it let me know how it goes, I’m fascinated.

This could be the textbook example of “how we do”.

A special day demands special consideration. A special day demands celebration. A special day demands whatever the hell it wants. My special person’s special day looked something like this:

I’d taken the day off work, so starting the festivities just after midnight was no worry (my girlfriend rightfully didn’t want to be seen in a Denny’s by the light of day). Like Toronto’s favourite former child star turned actor, we started from the bottom. 1am Denny’s for a grand slam breakfast. Complimentary on your birthday, in solidarity I ordered a variant grand slam with turkey bacon, fruit, a Spanish omelette and an English muffin in lieu of pancakes. Given that they weren’t gluten free, I got her pancakes too in exchange for some fruit. If there’s one good thing to say about Denny’s, it’s that it’s impossible to be disappointed. Nobody expects anything from America’s Favourite Diner, so disappointment is nowhere to be found. The pancakes were surprisingly large and somehow dry. The bacon, eggs and sausages marched onto the plate in pairs like it was Noah’s Ark. My omelette somehow adopted the dominant flavour of the residual spinach water. The turkey bacon tasted- in a word- “synthetic”. When the server came around to ask how our food was I replied with a flat and inscrutable “yes”. The best thing that we could say about our Denny’s experience is that once it was over we could speak in past tense. Back home to brush our teeth then fall asleep with full bellies.

We awoke and scooted off to our favourite breakfast café, Karine’s, then followed it up with lattes from Red Eye Espresso. Asking if they did anything for birthdays, they offered to comp the birthday person’s drink. One soy vanilla latte later, success was achieved. We wandered around with a goal of heading to Marble Slab for a free ice-cream, but upon further examination we discovered they’d changed the birthday deal to a BOGO (buy one get one free, because the world didn’t have enough acronyms). We eschewed the deal and instead went out shopping. I’ve been thinking lately that I’m probably old enough now to own a few pairs of sexy undies. Some boxers/trunks that make things look a bit better sorted. I love my Kirkland 3 pack boxers, they’re comfy and supportive, but they’re bland as fuck. We took the chance to shop around and figure out what I was actually looking for. When I queried my girlfriend on why we were wasting her birthday looking for my stuff, she assured me it wasn’t just for me.

While looking at underpant after underpant, we stopped off at Sephora to pick up her birthday gift. Upon leaving, we spied a gathering of people, large plastic poodles and expensive looking makeup things. We took a closer look. To celebrate their new Fall launch, Mac were doing free 30 minute makeovers. Not one to pass on anything free, I signed up for one too and soon enough we were sitting in the chair. I told her to make me pretty. I learned things about powders to put underneath stuff, powders for contouring and accentuating certain things. Apparently if you put a darker dusting of powder on the outside edges of something, then put a dusting of lighter powder on the inside it draws the eye to the outlines and sharpens everything up. No knowledge is wasted knowledge, that’ll do me good someday. She put some weird gel into my eyebrows, some soft, sticky liquid on my lips, mascara on my eye lashes and did a something underneath my eyes to hide my deep, dark pockets. Then she sprayed something on my face to lock it all in. Looking in the mirror I couldn’t really notice much of a difference, but my eyes looked dumb and kind of cartoony. The girlfriend looked gorgeous, as always, but her eyes especially really stuck out. Makeover managed.

Next stop was Booster Juice for a sugary infusion. By this point it’d been about 5 hours since we last ate, causing me to assume the terrible Denny’s fare post midnight had actually filled me up some. Denny’s, at worst it’s still food-ish. We walked up to The Annex with every intention of signing up for her free yoga class, but the lights were off and nobody was home. We ambled a little before deciding that maybe eating a late lunch in lieu of waiting around for yoga would be best. We sat in the park using my yoga mat to lie on. I pulled out a strawberry-lime Rekorderlig I’d picked up at the LCBO earlier and we sipped together, contemplating eating options. While we pondered, malicious squirrels bombed us with mysterious heavy fruit from above. We finished up and sought sustenance.

We ended up at Guu, a Japanese izakaya bar. Little plates on small tables meant a cosy but boisterous meal. The staff loudly greeted everyone who entered while pop music pumped from the speakers. The food was delicious, we got short ribs, carpaccio and a curry bibimbap. Not too full, but with room for dessert, we headed towards the big bad final boss: Yoyo’s Frozen Yoghurt. I’ve been to this place two years in a row for my birthday. The deal is incredible. It’s a serve your own froyo establishment with one free birthday cup of any size. I think I’d managed to get just over $10, maybe even to $12 at a stretch. My girlfriend had plans to one-up something fierce. She layered the bottom with chocolate sauce, and fruit (to end the cup with beautifully chilled fruit). Over the top she draped a fat swirl of mocha/cherry froyo. A multitude of toppings adorned its peaks: Oh Henry bar, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Nerds, gummy worms, M&M sprinkles, mochi, marshmallow fluff, maple syrup, caramel drizzle and peanut butter sauce. On the scale it went, clocking at an insurmountable $14 of froyo plus toppings. Insane. Every bite was a lifetime of diabetes. It tasted endlessly delicious, until it came to the dense, sickly sweet syrup pool at the bottom. I had a sip and reeled. Now I know sugar like Bart and Millhouse do.

We’re home now and settled in. It’s time for the kind of special birthday fun I’m less inclined to share with you all. Because a special day demands it.

This might be yawn-ic to you, but I didn’t want to pussyfoot around it.

So there are ads on the TTC advertising labiaplasty/vaginoplasty. I don’t know about you, but even raising the idea that there can be something aesthetically wrong with a vagina is many kinds of shite. No matter how much someone disliked the look of their vagina, there’s no way it could look worse than a scrotum. The look of your vagina doesn’t impact how it works. From a guy’s perspective (if that mattered), please don’t think that this is a concern any of us have. I’m not gonna tell any woman what to do, that’s totally not my place. I know if any woman had qualms about having sex with me because my balls naturally hang, I probably wouldn’t want them in my bed. Body shaming is body shaming, but targeting such an intimate area with something that should never be a concern raises my hackles something chronic. Considering there’s dumb religious advertising throughout the public transport system preying on the fears of the emotionally fragile (and responding with scripture that doesn’t address the question they had in the first place. Person: Dear God, what do I do about my unwanted pregnancy? God: I am The Way, The Truth and The Light.), it’s significant that this struck a chord with me. With this in mind, I sent my first complaint to the TTC:

To: ttcinfo@pattisonoutdoor.com
Subject: Cosmetic surgery ads
Hey guys.

I’d like to make a complaint about the labiaplasty/vaginoplasty ads on the TTC. I’m not gonna poke my head into the business of whether or not there’s an issue with advertising cosmetic surgery, but surely these cross some type of line? Yes I realise that these ads adhere to the Ontario Human Rights code and the Canadian Code of Advertising. Still, perpetuating the idea that there can be anything aesthetically wrong with a vagina (and potentially raising this insecurity in impressionable teenagers) is morally a pretty dark area. I’m not some conservative parent or anything, but this obviously stuck out enough to make me as a late 20s straight white dude feel an email was warranted. I can’t even begin to imagine what I’d feel like if I actually owned a vagina.

Is it not possible for them to just replace the labiaplasty/vaginoplasty ads with others from their campaign? Young girls surely don’t need to be given one more unnecessary reason to hate themselves.

Sincerely
Leon

I’m sure I’ll get a diplomatic response telling me to fuck off and that they’re not gonna do shit. That’s entirely fair. We’re in a capitalist system and they’re being offered capital to display the ad. Unless the potential bad will outweighed the income they garner from posting it up, there’d be no reason for them to accommodate my complaint. If anyone else wanted to follow suit and complain the address is back at the beginning of the email. Do it if you want, but I’m not aiming to make a crusade out of this. I just thought it was pretty shitty.

Vaginas are great. I’m a fan. Spread them with joy, not judgement.

Well, he was the God of this passage anyway. I’m sure most of you will pass on this regardless.

Today’s post is Magic the Gathering themed. I’d say here be dragons, but the deck only has one. As always, I recommend grabbing Autocard Anywhere if you’re interested in seeing what the cards actually do. I’ve been searching for a new Commander deck for a while and Athreos, God of Passage struck a chord with me. Back when I first started I got mercilessly beaten into the ground with an Opalescence/Replenish deck and it gave birth to a seed of something. A desire to make a better deck of my own? Or just a love of the deck? In any case, the confluence of recent Theros “constellation” cards and Magic Origins’ Starfield of Nyx gave me the idea of putting together a constellation EDH. Thing is, there’s actually not much support (and very little card draw) in the two colours. There are much better W/G/B commanders for that. So I went back to the drawing board.

I thought of Athreos as a way to utilise dumb little cheap creatures. I thought of Shirei, Shizo’s Caretaker as a neat way of getting value here. Thing is, once I started putting together the deck, Shirei didn’t have a lot to take care of. I had a ton of smaller creatures, but very few in the 1 power range. So I thought about it some more. What creatures could I get that gave me value on repeated play? What sacrifice outlets worked? What was the deck looking to do over all? Well if anything it was gonna be a typical Orzhov griefer deck. Slowly draining life points from your opponent. How could I make this process a little faster? I cooked up the following list and played a few games.

// Lands
1 [NE] Kor Haven
1 [R] Scrubland
1 [GTC] Godless Shrine
1 [ZEN] Marsh Flats
1 [EVE] Fetid Heath
1 [THS] Temple of Silence
1 [GP] Orzhov Basilica
1 [ISD] Isolated Chapel
1 [WWK] Bojuka Bog
1 [MM] High Market
1 [SH] Volrath’s Stronghold
1 [US] Phyrexian Tower
1 [DKA] Vault of the Archangel
1 [CMD] Command Tower
1 [TE] Reflecting Pool
1 [PLC] Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth
12 [TE] Swamp
11 [US] Plains
// Creatures
1 [ORI] Hangarback Walker
1 [TE] Blood Pet
1 [M11] Viscera Seer
1 [UL] Mother of Runes
1 [BOK] Kami of False Hope
1 [AVR] Blood Artist
1 [C14] Skirsdag High Priest
1 [NPH] Suture Priest
1 [GTC] Cartel Aristocrat
1 [GTC] High Priest of Penance
1 [FD] Auriok Champion
1 [ROE] Pawn of Ulamog
1 [ORI] Liliana, Heretical Healer/Liliana, Defiant Necromancer
1 [GP] Teysa, Orzhov Scion
1 [TSP] Basal Sliver
1 [CMD] Fleshbag Marauder
1 [US] Blood Vassal
1 [KTK] Grim Haruspex
1 [FRF] Merciless Executioner
1 [JOU] Agent of Erebos
1 [RAV] Dimir House Guard
1 [ZEN] Kor Cartographer
1 [UD] Academy Rector
1 [ALA] Ranger of Eos
1 [GP] Ghost Council of Orzhova
1 [C14] Shriekmaw
1 [MOR] Reveillark
1 [CHK] Kokusho, the Evening Star
1 [AVR] Harvester of Souls
// Spells
1 [DS] Skullclamp
1 [ZEN] Bloodchief Ascension
1 [ZEN] Luminarch Ascension
1 [CS] Coldsteel Heart
1 [WL] Mind Stone
1 [CMD] Orzhov Signet
1 [ORI] Sword of the Animist
1 [C14] Malicious Affliction
1 [AP] Phyrexian Arena
1 [UL] Martyr’s Cause
1 [JOU] Banishing Light
1 [ALA] Oblivion Ring
1 [IN] Phyrexian Altar
1 [M14] Dark Prophecy
1 [GTC] Immortal Servitude
1 [SH] Grave Pact
1 [THS] Whip of Erebos
1 [PLC] Damnation
1 [DKA] Sorin, Lord of Innistrad
1 [TSP] Return to Dust
1 [M11] Day of Judgment
1 [R] Wrath of God
1 [JOU] Dictate of Erebos
1 [IN] Rout
1 [AVR] Exquisite Blood
1 [RAV] Pariah’s Shield
1 [MBS] Phyrexian Rebirth
1 [CMD] Martyr’s Bond
1 [LRW] Austere Command
1 [SHM] Wound Reflection
1 [GP] Debtors’ Knell
// Sideboard
SB: 1 [JOU] Athreos, God of Passage

So how does it play? It’s a blast when everything works well, but it has a habit of running out of steam. Match ups I played were:

Titania, Protector of Argoth: Very little land. Got steamrolled by land destruction and a mass of 5/3 elementals. I had a Wrath of God/Grave Pact in hand, but when they played Zuran Orb it was all over.

Rafiq of the Many: Stalled the ground with High Priest of Penance. Gained incremental advantage with Blood Artist and Pawn of Ulamog. Liliana, Heretical Healer and Viscera Seer had a bit of fun. When Skirsdag High Priest showed up I finally had something a bit bigger to beat back with. Game ended soon after.

Alesha, Who Smiles at Death: Blood Artist and Suture Priest were too much. My opponent got some bollocks off with Kiki-Jiki, Karmic Guide and Necrotic Sliver, but after luring him into sacrificing the sliver, I killed Kiki-Jiki and took the game over with some Athreos beatdown. At this stage I was surprised how quickly Athreos comes online. B/W can fittingly turn on the devotion in a heartbeat.

The deck has a ton of fun little interactions. Skirsdag High Priest and Liliana, Heretical Healer get activated with ease. Liliana does some spicy stuff once recurred. Fleshbag Marauder and Merciless Executioner read 2B: Opponent sacrifices a creature and loses 3 life. In the event they let me grab the cards back, things get silly. Blood Pet and Viscera Seer are some serious MVPs, activating most of the deck, recurring with ease and draining the opponent well. I’m suspicious of Grim Haruspex while my creature count is so low and I’m not convinced the usually solid Dimir House Guard is pulling its weight. At times it stalls out without drawing into stuff.

The deck above is actually the post-change version, I added in a bunch of format staples to get a bit of recycling going on. Phyrexian Arena, Skullclamp, Phyrexian Altar. Part of me wants more creature based sac outlets, which I might look into. The deck feels like it could want Mikaeus the Unhallowed, but he’s in nearly all of my B/x EDH decks. The deck could actually use Karmic Guide and Phyrexian Plaguelord, but where do they fit. I don’t want the deck being top-heavier than it needs. Small, cheap threats are the name of the game. I still need to get a lot more playtesting in before feeling secure on my choices, but this could be a neat 1v1 deck in the making.