The website deadspin.com has been posting stories from fans who have met professional wrestlers who have varying degrees of fame. They’re really fun to read, because wrestlers are so goofy anyway and when meeting fans they try to somewhat be in character but also somewhat try to be normal, and then you have the wrestling fans who often lack social skills. So anyway, here’s my contribution that I just wrote:
I love how Tolkien has beautiful chapter titles that are complete nonspoilers for those reading all the chapter titles at the beginning of the book but make total sense and describe the chapter to those who have already read the books and are looking back.
The Two Towers, Book 3, Chapter 5: The White Rider
Chapter synopsis: Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli search the site of the battle between the Orcs and the Rohirrim and find a leaf of mallorn and some crumbs of lembas. With this evidence of the hobbits’ presence they continue their search into the forest and reach the hill where the hobbits had met Treebeard. Then they meet an old beggar-man whom they believe to be Saruman at first, who turns out to be Gandalf. The wizard tells them that the hobbits met Treebeard and that the Ents are heading towards Isengard; he advises them to go to Rohan and help in the war that is preparing there. He calls his horse, Shadowfax, and with him come the horses Aragorn, Gimli, and Legolas lost the night before. Apparently Saruman spooked the horses away but they met Shadowfax and stayed with him. Gandalf and the three companions ride to Edoras, the court of Théoden the King of Rohan.
I was thinking about something today regarding military service. Starting in 1948, the candidate for U.S. President with more military experience usually did better in elections than his adversary: Truman defeated Dewey, Ike defeated Stevenson (twice), Kennedy defeated Nixon, Nixon defeated Humphrey, Carter defeated Ford, Reagan defeated Mondale, and the elder Bush defeated Dukakis. The exceptions: Johnson defeated World War II pilot Goldwater, Nixon defeated bomber pilot McGovern, and Reagan defeated Naval Academy graduate Jimmy Carter. (And yet at least Johnson, Nixon, and Reagan all had some military experience.) Then in 1992, everything changed. Clinton (no experience) defeated the elder Bush, then defeated combat veteran Dole. The younger Bush (virtually no experience) sort of defeated Vietnam veteran Gore, and then defeated Vietnam combat veteran Kerry. Obama (no experience) defeated McCain (Navy pilot, POW).
So what happened? Well, perhaps World Wars I and II created so many voters with military experience that in the 1950s – 1980s the public thought it important for the Commander in Chief to be one of them. Then in 1990, we started losing so many of the veterans, and the younger generation had far fewer veterans to replace them. Then again, you’ll note that the period I covered before everything changed perfectly coincides with the Cold War. Perhaps when that ended, we no longer thought it important for the President to have served in the military. But here’s where I’m going with all this: notice something about the election this year? Zero military experience. It’s interesting that with all the military action the nation has had the last ten years that even the Republican party has abandoned the notion that military experience is important. (When’s the last time they ran someone with none? 1948.) Anyway, I’m not trying to say whether it’s right or wrong, I’m just pointing out that it’s fascinating for me to see the first election in my lifetime – and my parents’ lifetime – involving two candidates with no military record.
I got this e-mail earlier today from TheOneRing.net: “If you have anything to post at TORN, please do it now! We’ve got big news later in the day that we want to keep at the top of the site for a while.”
The big news, of course, is that The Hobbit will have its theatrical trailer coming out September 19.
I saw The Hobbit’s teaser trailer in 3D and thought it was good, but I’m more interested in seeing this second one, since the theatrical trailers are usually better than the teaser trailers. I’ll never forget the first time I saw The Fellowship of the Ring theatrical trailer – it was jaw dropping and remains my favorite trailer of all time.
You’ll never guess who makes his first appearance in this chapter!
The Two Towers, Book 3, Chapter 4: Treebeard
Chapter synopsis: Merry and Pippin continue their way into Fangorn Forest, and meet Treebeard the Ent. Ents are strange, tall, very old creatures whose appearance resembles that of the trees. They talk about a great many things: the hobbits tell Treebeard about their journey, and he tells them about the Ents, their history, and the Forest of Fangorn. The Ents are threatened by Saruman, whose orcs are destroying the forest and felling trees. Treebeard feels it is high time that something be done about it, and he assembles an Entmoot, a gathering of the Ents, where they debate this issue. Since Ents are never hasty, the assembly lasts for two days and two nights, but in the end they decide to attack Isengard (the ring of rocks in the middle of which the Tower of Orthanc, the dwelling of Saruman, is set). Treebeard takes the hobbits along on his march, and a great many Ents join it on the way.