TOM THE DANCING BUG: The Donald Trump Mysteries

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I’d like to go on record as being 100% behind the idea of building a wall around Donald Trump. If he really needs the gaudy “T” as part of the deal, I find that acceptable.


The marking of “T” acts as a warning to any curious, witless stooge tricked into unleashing the horror of the litch kept within!

… I may be thinking too much about a D&D campaign. :game_die:


Actually, writing the election timeline as a D&D campaign could be quite fun.
How different parties try to get their own evil lich[1] to win.

[1] …or maybe leech? It’s a politician, after all…


I guess in having his brands made in China, Mexico, etc., Trump was, on the other hand, actually doing his bit to try to solve the immigration “problem”?

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That would only be a warning for the current generation. Just like with nuclear waste, we need some sort of symbols to warn people from the future who may not speak English or understand the Latin alphabet.


Is there any symbol that is universally (to at least human cultures) that conveys the meaning of “Danger: don’t open or go inside this place” ?
I would contest that each of the above only have meaning in a shared cultural context.

In time the “T” symbol itself would become the ultimate symbol of human kind for all things distasteful and dangerous. This would be gained from the usage on the tomb of horror.


That’s pretty much one of the first concepts covered in any basic communications class - all symbols are only meaningful within a cultural context. It’s possible that we could come up with something generally applicable for (most) modern cultures, if only through conveying that symbol with an explanation for the next 100 years, but I’d seriously bet against that symbol having the same meaning for everyone encountering it in 1000 years.

Those poor slobs that try to rebuild civilization after the next big collapse are going to have a rough time of it when they start trying to dig up the secrets of the ancients. “This sign means danger. Must be a great weapon of some sort! Start digging.”


You beautiful nerds are going to love listening to this 99% Invisible podcast episode. Trust me.


Thank you for that! It was right on target.
It highlighted an issue where even a cultural symbol may mutate meaning. The Horrible “T” symbol of today may be a trendy symbol of tomorrow’s youth culture. Then any warning assumed would be lost.

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That sort of storage site was exactly one of the things that came to my mind. I haven’t heard that specific podcast (thank you! I’ll be adding it to my queue), but I have heard / read some of the discussion points therein.

Symbols are funny things. Know the biohazard symbol? (It’s actually amazing how many people don’t!) I am of Scottish decent, so when I found a shirt with the biohazard symbol in a Celtic knot-work pattern, I had to have one. I often wear it for doctor / hospital visits, and I’m a bit surprised that I’ve only been asked about it once.


If all the candidates are liches, adventurers could use the same tactics to fight each one. Make them different monsters; the more likely they are to win their party’s nomination or the election the more powerful.

Hmm … actually, let’s have each monster type (aberration, construct, dragon, giant, undead, etc.) nominate their own candidate of approximately the same challenge rating (maybe with some controversy based on subtypes; air elementals accuse the fire elementals of unfair tactics so a fire elemental wins the elemental nomination.) The adventurers get hired/encouraged/charmed/etc. by various candidates to campaign for them, perform (political or physical) assassination of their opponents, raise funds for them, etc.


That’s exactly the question behind this excellent article, This Place is not Honor, about the best way to bury nuclear waste. (Or, I suppose, Donald Trump.)

How can you bury dangerous waste in a hole in the ground, when it might remain dangerous long after our own culture has past, and try to prevent future cultures from digging it up?

All the symbols that the Ancient Egyptians placed on their pyramids, warning people not to go in, did very little after all. We’re always going to be inquisitive about man-made things from earlier cultures. How can you possibly say “No, really, don’t go in, we mean it this time?”

(Edit: it looks like the podcast linked by @telecinese is on the exact same discussion.)


Use warning symbols. In their vicinity place pictures of symptoms. A few adventurers die of the symptoms shown. The culture will develop appreciation for the symbols.

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