The Mouth of Sauron
Diary of a Tolkien Fiend
Tuesday, December 23, 2003
 
There's a new official Summoning Homepage, with its own forum.
 
Friday, December 19, 2003
 
When Wiki and I got to the theater on Tuesday night, four hours early to beat the crowd, there was no one lined up to see RotK yet, so we went to the bar to have a couple of drinks. The guy taking tickets had told us to come back at 11:15, and we laughed about that, because we knew from past experience that by nine o'clock a line would already be forming outside the theater. And sure enough, when we got back from the bar there were already ten to fifteen people lined up ahead of us. So we got on line and waited for about two and half hours out in the cold before someone convinced the powers that be to let us wait inside the lobby. When it came time to let us into the theater, some people behind us who had been talking with the ushers suddenly ducked under the rope and ran inside ahead of everyone else. Needless to say, Wiki was pissed. But we got pretty good seats anyway. As for what we thought about the movie, you can read & participate in our discussion about it here.
 
Tuesday, December 16, 2003
 
Witchking and I are going to see The Return of the King tonight at midnight. I can't believe it's all over. We've been living and breathing these movies for four years now, even before the first one came out. Anyway, I just hope it doesn't suck. And I hope there are no assholes in the audience, or Witchking might flip out on them and get us ejected from the theater. I'll let you all know how it went tomorrow, and probably post my review as well. And then we still have the extended edition to look forward to. As I've said before, I consider those to be the real movies, anyway. Looking forward, though, I think it's time we Tolkien fans returned to the source. With the movies behind us, we can concentrate on reading and discussing the books, studying the history of Middle-earth, writing fan fiction, roleplaying, and bringing the joy of Tolkien to those who are just discovering him. These movies have raised the sale of Tolkien's books higher than ever before, which means there's a whole new generation of Tolkien fans out there. So from that perspective, this is isn't the end, it's only the beginning.
 
Friday, December 12, 2003
 
There's a review of The Return of the King going around, but so far I've resisted reading it, because it contains spoilers. If you're interested in reading it, Master Morgoth of Morgoth's Lair has posted it here. Though, as I said, I haven't read it, I did skim through it once, and it seems to be more of a Q & A than an actual review. Oh, and should you discover some disturbing news about a certain character whom I consider extremely important not being in the film (and I don't mean Saruman), don't worry about how you're going to break the news to me. I've already heard those rumours, and I am suitably depressed. Peter Jackson, thou hast betrayed me!!! Well, here's hoping the extended version will make amends...
 
Thursday, December 11, 2003
 
As some of you probably know, I've been trying to quit smoking for years, with little success. I've tried quitting cold turkey, using nicotine patches, taking Welbutrin, smoking reduced nicotine cigarettes, smoking weed (which is just as bad for your lungs if you do it often enough) and switching to a pipe (which I smoked without inhaling). Nothing has worked. A few years ago I developed asthma from my smoking, and that's one of the reasons I want to quit, but for the past few days I've also been suffering from acute bronchitis, and have had to use two different inhalers (Albuterol & Flovent) just so I can breathe normally. This is not the first time I've suffered from bronchitis, which is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes - the air delivery system for the lungs. It is, however, the worst attack I've ever had, and it's made me realize what it would be like to develop chronic bronchitis, which will be the inevitable result of my two-pack-a-day habit. And chronic bronchitis is only a prelude to something much worse: emphysema.

But asthma and bronchitis in themselves are bad enough, so the other night I quit smoking again, this time hopefully for good. I'm trying the patch again, and as of this writing I haven't had a cigarette in 1 day, 10 hours, 40 minutes and 32 seconds. I'll keep you informed of my progress over the next few months. Maybe my own experiences of struggling with this addiction will inspire those of you who smoke to try quitting as well. If you want to try, I suggest joining an online support network like QuitNet. Registration at this website is free, and in addition to giving you tips on quitting smoking, every time you log on it tells you how long it's been since you smoked your last cigarette, how much money you've saved by quitting, and how much time you've added to your life expectancy. I for one have decided to put the money I've saved each week aside so that I can eventually reward myself for quitting by buying something I've wanted for some time but couldn't afford: a widescreen TV. Based on how much money I spend a month on cigarettes, I figure I'll have enough saved up to get it by June 2004.
 
Wednesday, December 10, 2003
 
Master Morgoth of Morgoth's Lair has an idea to create a new forum at his board for the discussion of J. R. R. Tolkien's books on a chapter by chapter basis. You can read about this project here. I will be one of the three forum hosts selected to represent the boards that have been invited to participate. Besides Morgoth's Lair and Lugburz, Morgoth has also invited Mordor: Dark Messages to participate in the discussions.
 
Saturday, December 06, 2003
 
It's snowing here in New York City, which is mostly a good thing because it means I've been hibernating for the past few days, and that's given me more time to work on my various online projects. I'm starting to go a little stir-crazy, though, but it helps to have the internet to keep me occupied. I have some minor news regarding the Lugburz Message Board: I've renewed our CSC Gold (the service that keeps the board ad-free) for another year. Also, I've come to the conclusion that Witchking and I have been seriously neglecting the board of late, which may be part of the reason why it's been so dead. Witchking in particular has been posting infrequently even for him; he explains why here. For my part, while I have been posting more or less regularly, I realized that I haven't started any quality topics in a really long time. So I took some time out today to start a new Tolkien-related discussion: The Magic of Elves, Wizards, Demons & Sorcerers. The purpose of the discussion is to better understand how magic fits into Tolkien's world, what its nature is, and what the relationship is between different types of magic in Middle-earth. If you have something to contribute to this discussion, please feel free to join in at any time. Registration is not required; if you're not registered, just pick a unique username but leave the password field blank when you post your reply.
 
Tuesday, December 02, 2003
 
With only fifteen days left 'till The Return of the King, I'd thought I'd post some links to a couple of my favourite LotR film-related humour pages. The first two are from a great source of Tolkien humour on the web, the redoubtable Tolkien Sarcasm Page. The third is from Jerry the Frog Productions.

In case you'd like to take a trip down memory lane, so you can remind yourself how far movies based on Tolkien's works have come, here's A Critique of Ralph Bakshi's Lord of the Rings.

What would Peter Jackson's The Fellowship of the Ring have been like if it had been only two hours long instead of three? Read this hilarious script of The Two-Hour Movie and find out.

At The Hand Puppet Movie Theater you can enjoy inspired adaptations of blockbuster films that will have you falling out of your chair. Witness The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers as you've never seen them before (I especially recommend these if you had trouble following the plot of either film).
 
Monday, December 01, 2003
 
Usually I work five days a week, eight hours a day, but recently I decided to change my schedule so that I only work four days a week, which means that from now on I'll be working ten hours a day. While this will give me an extra day off during the week to work on the site, it may prove too tiring in the end. Not only that, but I've always been a night owl, and now I'll have to get up even earlier in the morning than I used to. Anyway, tomorrow my new schedule begins (or actually, today), and I have to get up at the buttcrack of dawn, so am I going to bed early tonight like I should? Noooo... of course not. It's after two in the morning and I'm still up posting this crap.

Today I went shopping with my mother for Christmas gifts. I don't celebrate Christmas, I celebrate Yule, but she celebrates Christmas, and as long as presents under a tree are involved she doesn't much care whether I call it Christmas or Yule, so it all works out. At any rate, I have to say that my mother must be the most annoying person who ever lived, especially to shop with. All she did all day was nag and complain, and start petty arguments with me. But that's what she usually does, so I was prepared for that. What I wasn't prepared for, because thankfully she doesn't do it too often, was her yelling at a compleat stranger for holding up the line at the checkout counter. Sometimes I wonder why I even go Christmas shopping with her. Well, actually I do know why. She can't see so good anymore, and even though I don't drive, she needs me to ride shotgun so I can warn her if she's about to run someone over.

Where was I? Oh yeah, so she yells at this old guy for asking the cashier all kinds of questions and holding up the line, but meanwhile whenever we're in a shopping center she's always in someone's way, because she stops in the middle of aisles or even in front of doorways to rummage through her purse or to look at something. Of course, a line inevitably forms behind her, and when I try to tell her to move to the side so people can get by she instead starts walking forward, so that she's still in their way, and so slowly that even if a bunch of Ents were walking behind her they'd be annoyed.
 
The rider was robed all in black, and black was his lofty helm; yet this was no Ringwraith but a living man. The Lieutenant of the Tower of Barad-dur he was, and his name is remembered in no tale; for he himself had forgotten it, and he said: 'I am the Mouth of Sauron.' J.R.R. Tolkien

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