Archive for July, 2012

I now see

…that the discontinuity in my posting from last November dates to myself, husband, and our two cats all getting sick. I really thought we might lose our cats, and the thought of it, the very idea of B (my husband) having to live in a world without his black and white buddy Michael, broke my heart. Then we had Thanksgiving, which was a joyful time, welcoming our daughter’s new young man into the fold, followed by Christmas, which was likewise joyful but involved the usual expensive binge of musical psychic energy, followed by teaching online for a month, followed by four months of worry over home and money issues.

Politicians, I loathe you. LOATHE you.

I suppose I am entitled to some respite from kicking myself around the block for all I didn’t get done and all the posting and story updating I didn’t do, and so on. And so I am. But I certainly wish the stability of our national and personal finances had not been gambled with, risked, and endangered by the fools in Washington and here in Sacramento, all so that they could ride to our rescue from the crisis THEY created so that we would love them and vote for them forever.


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Master of Middle-Earth: The Fiction of J. R. R. TolkienMaster of Middle-Earth: The Fiction of J. R. R. Tolkien by Paul H. Kocher
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Although first published several years before The Silmarillion, in that vasty deep time when so many of our questions remained unanswered, Master of Middle-earth remains one of my favorite critical studies of Tolkien. Kocher’s chapter-long character study of Aragorn is particularly brilliant:

“This is the ambitious, weary, and apprehensive prince who impatiently watches the foolish antics of the hobbits under the suspicious eyes of the crowd at the inn. To his mind the hobbits badly need taking in hand, as children who are playing games with the fate of Middle-earth….He does not make the mistake of being ingratiating; on the contrary, he starts out with a shock tactic. Because of the debacle in the common room he treats them like the children they have shown themselves to be, and proposes to give them unspecified valuable information in exchange for the ‘reward’ of being allowed to accompany them. The proposal is meant to be indignantly refused and when it is, Aragorn applauds.” (p. 133)

[First read in February 1973 and several times since.]

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