March 1st, 2003


Valinor Lost

Turned off Farscape at the first commercial last night. I'd seen it. I didn't like it the first time. Why am I rewatching? Already did the rant.

Instead I started in on The Silmarillion in earnest. I even read the first chapter. So... Melkor is Lucifer, right, and the rest of those passing for gods on Middle Earth are really angels. I have come to realize that I have to read this as if it were a text on mythology, rather than as a work of fiction. That's fine. I like history and mythology; I can deal.

So there I was, lying in bed, The Silmarillion in front of me, The Lord of the Rings and Foster's A Guide to Middle Earth on my bed table, and a couple of pages on the pronunciation of vowels in Quenya snagged from a website at my side. I have to admit that Tolkein's use of accent marks and circumflexes in his writings has always been just so much noise to be filtered out for me. Never bothered to find out exactly how á or é are supposed to be pronounced until last night. Turns out á is a long a, pronounced as the a in father (which surprised me, because to me a long a is pronounced as in fate). The normal, short a is to be pronounced somewhere between the a in father and the a in fat, which sort of gives me the amusing image of the elves all speaking like Kennedys. Feh.

Olórin is going to turn out to be Gandalf, isn't he?

One thing about it is that it is making me really want to reread Zelazny's Lord of Light, a book based on a mythology with which I was initially unfamiliar, that made me want to learn more about it.
  • Current Music
    "Charmless Man" - Blur

Next to Nothing

Still fighting the cold, still fighting the asthma, still fighting inner demons, and getting tired of the whole frelling thing. Got next to nothing done today. Actually that's not quite true. I packed a bunch of crap I had on the big table in the living room, and hauled it up to the attic, along with boxes and boxes of stuff that I'd been storing there. Yes, I've been using the living room as a storage area. It's a perfectly valid decorating choice for a bachelor with no life. Now I'm going to convert it into a temporary workshop/finishing area so I can assemble and finish the bookcases.

Once the bookcases are done, it's the living room's turn. I've been meaning to paint it since before I moved in, and now I've a good reason. One of the recommendations my doctor made to help with my asthma in the cold was to humidify the frell out of the house, so I've been doing that. The moisture has been condensing near the windows, with the result that there are now a multitude of ugly brown streaks running down the walls where the moisture has dissolved all the years of cigarette smoke residue left behind by the previous owner. God, it's awful looking. I knew the walls were dirty, but I had no idea. Anyway, the situation is propelling me to DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT, which is good. Be nice to have that room functioning, and I really do need something to keep my mind occupied. Maybe I'll even drag myself away from the computer once in awhile. I used to do that.

Apart from scrubbing down the walls, there's not a lot of prep work to be done. I spackled most of the holes when I did the back room, but there's still one crack that needs to be patched. Then it's a couple of coats of primer followed by antique white. I know, very conservative, but It works well with the woodwork, which is stained antique maple. Plus I've still got most of the five gallon pail of it down in the basement.

The question after that is what to do about the floor. The carpet used to be white, but is now closer to the color of the lunar surface, especially if you consider the pattern of little craters formed by all the cigarette burn marks. The texture of the carpet is still pretty good for the most part, it's just butt ugly. So, do I leave it there, and cover it with my grandfather's Persian rug (which will cover most of it up), or do I rip it up, do the parquet/strips thing that I did in the back room, and then lay the Persian rug over that? I can try out the first option easily enough, so that's what I'll do initially.

Trying not to think too much about anything else. Time to go see how those crazy Ainur, Manwë and Melkor, are getting along.
  • Current Music
    "Divorce Song" - Liz Phair