arontius: (Default)
.....Hey, look at this:


.....Christopher is editing another of his fathers works, The Fall of Arthur. It'll be in verse. Can't wait to read it! It'll be sad, of course, but full of glorious deeds none the less.

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....Was welcomed home today by the 2012 Tax Assessment. The value of our home dropped by approximately $7,000. However, the property taxes increased by approximately $250. I went reading through the assessment and found that the increase was due to a new education levy that went into effect since the last assessment. I used to fill in the 'Yes' box religiously and without thinking for many years (and I'm pretty religious about getting my ballots submitted). But the past couple of years where we've paid the taxes direct rather than having them included in the house payment has made me start hesitating before checking off that 'Yes'.

.....I keep reminding myself that it is an investment on the future, the education of the young. But that increasing bite every year....

.....There is a J.R.R. Tolkien photograph and signed letter up for auction, at this web-site: . The current estimate on price? A mere $39,000 Pounds. Sigh! It's probably one of the more famous pictures taken of Professor Tolkien as well. At least in his later years. I've got to win that lottery!

.....Still fighting off a cold. Last night was frustrating. It was the June Faire meeting. We were sequestered in the kitchen of the VFW Hall. My right ear was clogged and aching. That was a distraction in and of itself. Then add to that the fact that it felt like I had several ear plugs stuck in there good and tight. Argh! I could hear about every third word being spoken around me. I misinterpreted things on several occassions and had to have people repeat things several times. I was grumpy before the meeting was over and finally snapped at Cedric. I apologized later. Thankfully it was Cedric and not some others who might have taken it a lot more personally.

.....I'm feeling better today. The ear is still somewhat clogged, but it is not achy like it was last night. However, TBT is in full blown cold mode now. I have to remember to replenish my zinc mineral supply. I think that's why I've become sick twice over the past month. I'm usually pretty good about keeping up on the zinc, but ran out about a month ago and keep forgetting to order some more.

.....A friend of mine, Linda Sartor, from Santa Rosa in California, was recently arrested in Bahrain. She was part of a group of people organizing protests against the government there as part of the Peace Force initiative. She actually took a break from her place in the Occupy Oakland movement to fly to Bahrain and do this. :-)

.....You can read the story of the group at But here is an excerpt from an e-mail she sent out:

"They treated us very well through the detention and deportation...We hung out on comfortable couches, chatting with the female police officers who were left to watch us during the hours of time it took the authorities to check our identities. I was impressed with how much they knew about me when they called us in one at a time to explain why they were cancelling our visas. They said that in the small print on the tourist visa, it says that we must stay the whole time in the hotel where we told them we were going to be staying upon arrival. Then the other reason was because I participated in illegal protests. They had video taped the first protest which probably numbered in the hundreds of people--the one I described to you, when I got my first experience with tear gas and sound bombs and the two women first got deported. Since it was smallish and we were in close contact with the police, we were quite apparent and I imagine they had good footage of each of us on those tapes. I'm sure that I wasn't so obvious to the authorities in that huge protest (probably more than 10,000 people) when I got separated from my local buddy. And then I didn't even make it to this last protest the day we actually got detained and deported."

.....She makes it sound like she was pulled over for having expired tabs on the car. :-)

.....Still debating on whether or not I want to head on over to Fight Practice. I probably will as I missed last week. I'm sure it doesn't make a real difference whether I'm there or not, but I feel personally guilty when I miss a couple of practices. Like it somehow shows a lack of support on my part for the Fighting Community. I think wearing those Coronets makes you Catholic for some reason. The guilt just seems to ooze from everywhere. :-)

.....But that would be the last until next week. Nothing on the docket tomorrow, Friday, or the weekend. Come on, Friday!

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....The trouble with 'vacation' is that, eventually, vacation ends and you have to re-enter The Real World (tm). :-) I am NOT looking forward to getting up at 0400 tomorrow morning and making my way in to the Shipyard. But I don't think I'll be alone in that regard. I think a lot of us will be dragging through the day tomorrow. At least it will only be a three day week. That'll help a little bit.

.....Took a little while this evening to find everything and put it together. The work cell phone, the badge, the beeper. They were all in different places and took a little bit of detective work.

.....The 'to-do' list gathered dust the last couple of days. I just couldn't get motivated to do anything really on it. Mainly read books and explored on the computer. A couple of last trips to Starbucks.

.....Spent a good half-hour or so scraping off the beard-like thing on my face. :-) Certainly does not grow very fast, and was really starting to get to that itchy stage. Desperately need a haircut, but did not get the chance. I'm sure that I'll get at least one hint this week about looking 'professional'. But thankfully, with the change in Operational Officer, and the general rev-up of the work scene, I might escape notice until I can actually get it fixed. :-)

.....The new banner started getting dyed today. The Kingdom checkey pattern is done. The Baronial Populace section is done. Started the black and red blocked pattern on the next section, but basically stopped there as I need to decide on a color scheme I actually like.

.....The dye flows quite a bit differently than the silk paints did. The yellow was really nice and smooth. The red not-so-much so. It had some of the same blotchiness issues that the paints had in large single color areas. It'll be interesting to see if that corrects any when it is steamed and fixed into place. But the 'stiffness' of the silk paints does not seem to be evident in the silk dyes, so they may actually fly even a little easier than the painted silk.

.....I had red, black and yellow borrowed from Madrun, but may want to borrow a blue or a green. Some of components just would not look right if they were painted as planned, so I will have to change the color scheme somewhat.

.....The big wooden frames are not working all that well either. When stretched tight on the frames, any movement of the frames pulls the silk in different directions and can lead easily to rips and tears in the silk. Especially if your silk is stored on this frame over time, like mine is. Ideally, once attached to the frame, the banner should probably be completed in one setting. But I've never been able to clear that kind of space off of my calendar to do that. :-)

.....TBT came up with a nice idea. She sent me a link to a quilt stand on E-Bay. The stand sits off the ground about three or four feet. The fabric sits over the top and locking pieces hold the fabric snugly to the frame so that you can work at stitching. I could see this being used for silk banner manufacture pretty easily. It was made from plastic tubing, so I'm wondering if this is something we can put together ourselves fairly easily.

.....We'll get this banner done though before moving on to the next 'improvement'. :-) Another day or so of painting. Then some repairs. Then setting of the dyes. When will it be done? Maybe March or April. :-)

.....Tomorrow night is the January Business Meeting. Then planning and packing for Twelfth Night. We'll start the year going from zero to warp speed in a matter of days. Really need to clear the cobwebs out of the brain and get a new 'to-do' list going. That'll probably be on the agenda for tomorrow. Along with the monthly Baronial letter and a bunch of stuff for Twelfth Night itself.

.....Work re-starts on the same day at J.R.R. Tolkien's birthday though. January 3, 1892. Tomorrow will be 120th anniversary of his birth. Happy Birthday, Professor Tolkien! :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....Hmmmm, neither the dwarves nor Bilbo look exactly as they do in my dreams. But then again, I'm not exactly normal. :-) Seeing Kate Blanchett in Rivendell was interesting as well. But I'm still 'cautiously optimistic'. :-)

.....Can't believe we're going to have to wait an entire year before we see this thought! Hope they have something more to show at NORWESCON!!!

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....They know not what they do!!!!!

.....Umm, hmmm, when I think of J.R.R. Tolkien's 'The Silmarillion,' I don't think I've ever thought of it in the context of a comic book. Not even really in the form of a graphic novel either. But someone has taken it in that direction.


.....Take a look at it here:


.....When I read the tragedy of the loss of the two trees of Valinor, the rending of Telperion and Laurelin, by the evil of Melkor and the giant spider Ungoliant, what I see in my mind's eye is not exactly the equivalent of what I see here. The next time I pick up my copy of The Silmarilion and read of this tragedy, am I going to instead see fuzzy headed troll dolls uttering colloquial American word phrases?

.....For some reason I'm rendered somewhat speechless by this artistic interpretation.

.....Um, Wow!

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....And you all thought I was silly to think that a direct comparison between Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings was a non-starter. Should Professor Tolkien be flattered that ideas were taken by J.K. Rowling for use in the Hogwarts universe? Or should he be rolling in his grave for the bits that were viciously stolen from him?

.....It's a sad world we live in these days.


.....Aaron / Arontius. :-)
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.....Now, just have to obtain 25,000 Pounds to buy it!

.....AND, it is an autographed copy of The Lord of the Rings.

.....Damn! That's like $42,000 in U.S. currency. Need to find the winning Lotto numbers for this week!

.....Covet! Covet! Covet!

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....O.K., tell me why anyone who is even remotely knowledgeable with Professor Tolkien and 'The Lord of the Rings' would want to get married using a copy of The One Ring of Sauron as their wedding band? At the very least I'd be worried for one of the couple. Think about it, 'One Ring to Rule Them All...One Ring to Bind Them'. Kind of ominous if you ask me.

.....Sigh! Middle Earth Tourists! Bah!

.....Check out the travesty,

.....look about a third of the way down the page.

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....I wonder how old they would be now? :-)

.....Be that as it may, everyone should take a few moments today and revel in the magic and beauty that is a writing by Professor Tolkien. Then go and flog yourself fifty times for ever thinking that a J.K. Rowling look-alike story could ever even compare. THEN, go and put out a beacon for all of those lost souls who STILL think that Harry Potter can live and breath to the same majestic heights of storytelling as something written by Tolkien. They know not that they are lost, but we shall show them the true path!

.....Happy Birthday Frodo! Happy Birthday Bilbo! Let's have a bottle of 1490! :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....Yanked from

Tolkien Fans Wanted for Reality Show
April 10th, 2008 by Altaira | Discuss

Is being a reality show contestant in your future? Gaby writes in: Wife Swap, ABC’s hit primetime show, seeks J.R.R. Tolkien enthusasts! Potential families can live anywhere in the United States, but we ask that families applying for the show consist of two parents and have at least one child, age 7 or older, living at home. Specifically, I’m looking for families whose lives have been transformed by the world of Middle Earth! If you yearn to walk the streets of Bag End, I want to hear from you! Families featured on the show will receive a $20,000 honorarium. If you refer a family that is selected you receive $1,000. To submit for the show, email a family photo and description to:

.....Wonder if I could convince TBT to take part. Rhys will be easy. All we have to do is say that he'll be in costume. Hmmmm...

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....The difficulty level on this was near laughable. As in some of their questions themselves were wrong (based on incomplete knowledge of the FACTS). They shouldn't let amateurs put together quizes like this. It should be against the law! :-)

Your Score: Haran

You scored 100% Tolkien Sense!

King You know your stuff. Heck, I shouldn't be the one writing this test. You're the king of Tolkien Sense.

"The wise speak only of what they know." LOTR Book 3 Chapter 6

This is the address for the key to the test, in case you're interested.

If you enjoyed this test please rate it!
Also, be sure you check out my other equally awesome tests.
My Movie Test
The Things I Value Test
Types of Intelligence Part 1
Types of Intelligence Part 2

arontius: (Default)
Hmmm, this was on the Tolkien LJ feed...

"University of Washington Tolkien Lecture Series

Amber writes to let us know that UW History Professor Dr. Robin Stacey is presenting a 5 part lecture series examining the life and works of J.R.R. Tolkien. The series is set to start on January 15, and more information will be posted on Dec 1 to the UW Alumni Website."

...I might be in Seattle more than I thought I would in January. :-)

Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....Hey Tamm,

.....Check this out:

....."News for Jun. 12, 2007

.....Children of Hurin Discussion begins today!

.....6/12/07, 12:11 am EST - Altaira

.....Have you finished reading The Children of Hurin and are dying to discuss it with other Tolkien fans? Or, do you need some motivation to crack open the book and start reading? Either way, the chapter-by-chapter discussion of The Children of Hurin, starting today in our Reading Room forum, is for you! We'll be covering a chapter a week. Each week's discussion will be led by a member of the Message Boards, and we still have openings for discussion leaders. Follow these links to read the start of the discussion, or check out the Children of Hurin discussion schedule.

.....Not a member of the Message Boards yet? Sign up now and join the fun! Tolkien veterans and novices welcome!"

.....As if we needed one more item to occupy our time. :-)

arontius: (Earendil the Mariner)
…..Yes, I feel like a dork. :-) Seems that Spamazon delivered my book several days ago to my front door, and because I always seem to enter the house through the garage I didn’t know that I had the book until I tripped over it last night going out the front door at 9PM. :-) Suffice it to say that I was up WAAAAAYYYYY too late last night devouring said book! :-)

…..It is GOOD!!!! Turin’s story is told in The Silmarillion. But it is told there as more of a third person narrative. In this re-telling, there is more depth to it and more continuity and a telling that is closer to first-person. The parts that Christopher has included to bridge gaps left by his father are invisible for the most part. Christopher has really progressed far since his first forays into editing his father’s works. He’s a lot more confident about it and it shows.

…..The story is very much a tragedy. This is not Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit. It is much closer to the style of The Silmarillion, but in reality easier to read. I know that a couple of reviewers have described it as akin to a Shakespearean tragedy. But I think a more accurate description would be a Scandinavian or Pre-English Tragedy, along the lines of Beowulf. There is a curse at work and all connected with it must suffer, and perish in the end. But there is a nobility to it that makes the tragedy that much more heart-wrenching.

…..I’m about two-thirds of the way done with it, but I can tell you now that it is way too short. I wish that Christopher had been confident enough to ADD material to it. Namely, I would have liked to have seen more of the outer world of Beleriand brought into the story and how the tragedy of Turin and Nienor affects the larger picture of the spider webs of Melkor’s machinations.

…..I also have to say that I’m starting to warm up to Alan Lee as an illustrator as well. His first Tolkien illustrations were really no better than the garbage that the Brothers Hildebrant release regularly upon the world (to my gut-wrenching distaste). But you can really see a little growth in how he is starting to see into the story that Tolkien is relating.

…..Need more. :-) I hope that Christopher starts training HIS son Adam now so that the family tradition can be continued. :-)

…..Sigh, now finishing Harry Potter is going to be difficult. :-) And I’m only half-way through the third book! :-)

…..Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Earendil the Mariner)
.....Look what CNN had to say about the new Tolkien book, 'The Children of Hurin'...

Review: 'New' Tolkien splendidly rewarding
POSTED: 9:05 a.m. EDT, April 17, 2007
Story Highlights
• "The Children of Hurin" worthy part of Middle-earth mythology
• Book, compiled from Tolkien pieces, edited by son
• Work concerns a leader and curse on his children
By Bruce DeSilva
Associated Press
…..(AP) -- Six thousand years before the Fellowship of the Ring, long before anyone had even seen a Hobbit, the elves and men of Middle-earth quaked at the power of the dark lord Morgoth.
…..Hunted by easterlings and orcs, they fled to the fastness of Nargothrond and to the deep forests of Brethil and Doriath. Among them, a hero emerged. Strong and courageous he was, but foolhardy and impetuous. His name was Turin, son of Hurin.
…..His story, released today by Houghton Mifflin, is a publishing event: It is the first new book by the creator of "The Lord of the Rings" in 30 years. The publisher calls it the culmination of an effort to bring to the public the vast body of work J.R.R. Tolkien had left unpublished, and largely unfinished, when he died in 1973.
…..Tolkien began writing "The Children of Hurin" 99 years ago, abandoning it and taking it up again repeatedly throughout his life. Versions of the tale already have appeared in "The Silmarillion," "Unfinished Tales" and as narrative poems or prose sections of the "History of Middle-earth" series.
But they were truncated and contradictory. Outside of Tolkien scholars and Middle-earth fanatics, few read them.
…..These works were, after all, largely unreadable -- dense, hard to follow histories and legends of Tolkien's vast, imaginary world, crammed with complicated genealogies, unfamiliar geography and hard-to-pronounce names. Readers who took up such books hoping for another Rings saga or charming yarn such as "The Hobbit" abandoned them after a few pages.
….."The Children of Hurin" is the book for which these readers have been longing.
…..It is the fruit of 30 years labor by Christopher Tolkien, the author's son, who has devoted much of his life to editing and publishing the work his father left behind. By meticulously combining and editing the many published and unpublished versions of the tale, he has produced at last a coherent, vivid and readable narrative.
…..Houghton-Mifflin has treated the work well, hiring Alan Lee, who won an Academy Award for art direction for "The Lord of The Rings: The Return of the King," to create stunning color illustrations.
…..The story unfolds in a region far to the west of where Frodo and Samwise would later roam, in a land destined to be swallowed by the sea in the cataclysm that would end the first age of Middle-earth. But even then, it was an ancient land, filled with legends and half-remembered histories.
…..As the tale begins, Morgoth has destroyed a vast army of elves and men and taken one of its leaders, Hurin, prisoner. The dark lord tries to bend Hurin to his will, but the great man defies him. So Morgoth pronounces a curse on Hurin's children, Turin and his sister Nienor.
…..The first chapter resembles "The Silmarillion," dense and confusing enough to discourage casual readers. But stick with it and the story soon becomes readable and engaging.
…..Don't expect an uplifting ending like the one to "The Lord of the Rings," however. This is a gloomy tale -- Hurin's children doomed to failure by Turin's hubris and, of course, the curse.
…..The story is told in the archaic style to which Tolkien fans are accustomed, from a man who admired old Anglo-Saxon and Norse sagas. A sample:
….."In this way, before the summer had passed, the following of Turin had swelled to a great force, and the power of Angband was thrown back. Word of this came even to Nargothrond, and many there grew restless."
…..The story is short by the standards of "The Lord of the Ring," covering just 259 pages, the rest of the book consisting of an introduction and appendix in which Christopher Tolkien explains how he went about his work. The details are unlikely to be of interest to the casual reader, but the bottom line is this:
…..Christopher Tolkien says that in reconciling the various versions of his father's story, he added no new material, save for an occasional transition. The words, he says, are virtually all his father's.
…..Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

.....Can't wait to hold the book in my hands!!!

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....WAY COOL!!!!!! Did you all see this on CNN?

....."Unfinished Tolkien work to be published in '07

.....NEW YORK (AP) -- An unfinished tale by J.R.R. Tolkien has been edited by his son into a completed work and will be released next spring, the U.S. and British publishers announced Monday.

.....Christopher Tolkien has spent the past 30 years working on "The Children of Hurin," an epic tale his father began in 1918 and later abandoned. Excerpts of "The Children of Hurin," which includes the elves and dwarves of Tolkien's "The Lord of the Rings" and other works, have been published before.

....."It has seemed to me for a long time that there was a good case for presenting my father's long version of the legend of the 'Children of Hurin' as an independent work, between its own covers," Christopher Tolkien said in a statement.

.....The new book will be published by Houghton Mifflin in the United States and HarperCollins in England."

.....Some of it is undoubtedly already told in 'The Silmarillion' and the rest of Christopher's series of edited Tolkien works, but I'll bet that Christopher Tolkien took all the bits and pieces and put them together and them added the wording to make it a cohesive story. Can't wait to see it in print!!! :-)

arontius: (Default)
.....So Marquessa Laurellen gives me this word out of Tolkien as part of the Tolkien word challenge, 'Guthwine'. In terms of Tolkien, it is easy to define and easy to give an etymology. It is 'Old English' for 'Battle' or 'War' - 'Friend'. This was almost too easy. What Marquessa Laurellen didn't know was my stint as Baronial Book Herald and the fact that I still have all of my reference sources for Old English name construction. :-) In LotR, it is Rohirric and the name of Eomer's sword.

.....But, I remembered seeing something about it being referenced in Beowulf itself. So I pull out one of my trusty annotated translations of Beowulf and see if I can look up the reference in there. But it was not mentioned at all by name.

.....So I go to the internet to see about tracking this down. I find several hundred sites that talk about the name being mentioned in Beowulf and the connection to Tolkien. But the interesting part of this is that none of them that I went through actually cite the source location in Beowulf.

.....So now I'm starting to wonder. I pull up a copy of Beowulf in its original on the internet and do a couple of initial searches for 'Guthwine'. No hits. I go back to my original and look at those sections where Beowulf actually pulls out his sword in preparation for battle. He gives a couple of really good speeches in a couple of these spots. A couple of them are actually addressed to his sword. But I don't see any reference to 'Battle-Friend' or 'War-Friend' in any of these speeches I read., now I'm REALLY curious. :-) Which is bad news. That's one step short of obsessed. :-) I've got my own copy of Beowulf in the original and am pouring through it paragraph by paragraph to see if I can find this reference to Guthwine.

.....I'm almost convinced that it doesn't exist and that all of these Tolkien sites are basing their 'facts' on something that doesn't exist. Makes me wonder if at some point some Tolkien fanatic hypothesized that this name came from Beowulf due to Tolkien's work with Beowulf. Once something is 'in print' it is amazing how easily it is taken as truth and gospel.

.....I could be wrong though. Tolkien was a true expert in Beowulf. His treatise 'Beowulf: The Monster and The Critics' is still used as a reference source for scholars of Beowulf and its construction to this day.

.....Damn! Not exactly something though that I want to pick up and research twenty-four days before July Coronation. Marquessa Laurellen is truly evil! :-)



arontius: (Default)

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