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Carol the Dabbler

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Posts posted by Carol the Dabbler

  1. My stew is based on Mom's beef stew (minus the beef), heavily influenced by Sam's wish-list in "Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit" (minus the rabbit):  "... a few bay leaves, some thyme and sage, ... turnips and carrots, and taters too, ... onions," with contributions from other hobbit lore, namely Bilbo's tomatoes* and of course lots of mushrooms!

    * His "prize-taker" tomatoes were not entirely Jackson's invention.  In the first edition of The Hobbit, Gandalf asks Bilbo for "cold chicken and tomatoes," which was amended to "cold chicken and pickles" in the second edition.  A lot of people claim the change was prompted by Tolkien's realization that tomatoes are a New World crop.  (The same people claim that Sam's "taters" weren't actually potatoes -- even though he attempts to clarify the term to Gollum as "po-ta-toes".)  But others (including me) have pointed out that "An Unexpected Party" explicitly takes place in late April, and since Hobbiton is clearly** located somewhere in the North Temperate Zone, then (unless Bilbo has a hothouse that's never mentioned) there could not be any ripe tomatoes till high summer.

    ** Tolkien himself stated several times that Middle Earth is our Earth, but about 6,000 years in our past.  It's established over the first few chapters of The Hobbit that April comes before summer (so not the Southern Hemisphere), and there is ice and snow in winter (so neither the tropics nor the subtropics).


  2. On 9/20/2022 at 12:21 PM, Hikari said:

    my very favorite story in the entire collection is in Book V: Christmas Adventures (2016) and details the carnage that ensues when Mrs. Hudson leaves her two bachelor tenants alone during the festive period because she's gone to see her niece who's having a baby.  Left to their own devices, Sherlock and John decide that yes, a graduate chemist highly trained in forensic methodology and a top flight medical surgeon CAN handle preparing their own Christmas dinner with all the fixings.

    If these were the BBC Sherlock and John, I would have thought that they were at least a little more familiar with their own kitchen.  But I assume it's ACD's Holmes and Watson (who apparently had no kitchen of their own).  Sounds delightful!


  3. 10 hours ago, Artemis said:

    Hmm, maybe I'm confusing beards and hoods, although I'm fairly certain I remember at least a couple of dwarves described as having blue beards and yellow beards, because I remember thinking how weird that was.  But it has been a couple of decades since my last reading.

    You're not misremembering.  I just checked and the first dwarf had a blue beard and a green hood.  Please bear in mind that humans can have hair that's more or less black, brown, yellow, red, gray, or white (to say nothing of little old ladies with blue hair) -- so I suppose members of a different (albeit related) species could have other colors.  But yeah, it strikes me as a bit silly too.

    10 hours ago, Artemis said:

    I never had any trouble remembering their names, but I'm generally good with names so there's that.  Gloin is easy for me to remember, being Gimli's father, but that's because of LotR.

    I'm generally pretty slow to put names together with faces, which is what I was talking about.  I could probably list the names all of the dwarves (including Gloin, of course), but as for matching the names with the faces, not so much.

    10 hours ago, Artemis said:

    Was Fili charming?  To be honest I can hardly remember anything he did or said in the films.

    I'm trying to remember -- he certainly didn't get nearly as much screen time as Kili!  Mostly, I think, he was part of their double act -- e.g., those matching big grins and "At your service!"  And I do not remember him ever being grumpy or stern or macho, etc., like most of the others.  So I'm left with the overall impression that he was charming.

    10 hours ago, Artemis said:

    A quick Google search brought me to this article about the hoods and beards.  I was only partially correct; only four of the dwarves are described as having a beard of a certain color, and at least one of those (if not all four, according to the article) could be considered a natural hair color.

    Come to think of it, it's not just little old ladies who are sometimes described as having blue hair -- shiny black hair is sometime described as "blue," apparently because of the reflections.  Now I'll read that article.  OK, they mostly make similar points to what I did in my prior post.  They don't mention shiny black being referred to as "blue," but their portrait of Dwalin kinda looks like such a case.


  4. 8 hours ago, Artemis said:

    I've never heard anyone call Fili "the pretty one"


    8 hours ago, Artemis said:

    with a beard like Kili's which is barely there at all, I don't know what they would have done.  Dwarves take great pride in their beards, so I thought it was a strange choice for Kili to have little more than scruff.

    I had never really thought about it, but now that you mention it, Kili's "Miami Vice beard" strikes me as a blatant ploy to make him "the pretty one."

    However I've never much cared for the "oops, I forgot to shave" look, so Fili and Kili (movie versions) strike me as about equally "pretty."  Plus they're both really charming -- especially in contrast to the other dwarves!

    8 hours ago, Artemis said:

    In "The Hobbit" (the book), all the dwarves have different-colored beards.  Colors that aren't natural hair colors.  I don't mind at all that they changed that for the movie, I think Tolkien might have changed it too if he knew that LotR was going to become a serious thing when he started his hobbit story.  But I still think it would have been neat if they'd included a little nod to it.  For instance, a tiny braid in each of their beards that corresponded to their color in the book, or the same color hairbands.

    In the book, they also wore different-color hoods, though I never did remember which was which.  If their beards were different colors too, I forgot that completely!

    I suspect that Tolkien color-coded them in an effort to make them easier to tell apart, though all I remembered was Thorin (the bossy one) and Bombur (the fat one).  In the movie, of course, the dwarves all look different, because they're played by different actors.  I still can't remember most of their names -- just Thorin (the bossy one), Bombur (the fat one), and Fili & Kili (the pretty ones) -- I'm always lousy at remembering names.  But at least I can tell them apart!


  5. 5 hours ago, Artemis said:

    Generally speaking, I think exchanging freedom for safety is a bad idea.  On principle I don't think people should be coerced into having something injected into their body; especially something so new and untried.  Those who are afraid of getting sick are more than welcome to vaccinate and mask up.  Those who would rather take the risk should be allowed to.

    Nicely said.

    • Like 1
  6. 14 minutes ago, J.P. said:

    How does hand washing prevent you from spreading or inhaling droplets carried through the air?

    It doesn't.  What it does do is help protect you from germs that were on surfaces you touched, which helps keep you from catching something, which hopefully makes one less person who could spread the illness.


  7. 1 hour ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    It was funny to see someone have to say “excuse me, can I get to my door please,” because people were having their photos took in front of the door. 

    Oh, for sure!  When we were there, people were apparently coming from all over the world (e.g., Indiana!) to have their picture taken at Sherlock's front door.

    1 hour ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    I can try and get to Gower Street Carol but I’ll be with someone and we have a bit of an itinerary so I can’t be sure.

    Understandable.  And good luck!  (I guess you already know that it's actually North Gower Street?)

  8. 5 hours ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    Surely if a show is cancelled it’s done for reasons of poor viewing figures which certainly wasn’t the case with Sherlock? If the BBC decided for some reason that they wanted no more to do with the series, but Moftiss said that they were ready to do another one, then companies like Netflix would be falling over themselves to take it off the BBC’s hands.

    That all sounds accurate to me, Herlock.  Though I sure hope it doesn't go to Netflix, because Alex and I would have a heck of a time trying to watch it (with our medium-speed internet service), plus Netflix doesn't always make DVDs available, and we'd want "hard copy" to keep, even if we were able to watch it on streaming.

    5 hours ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    I don't know if there is any I’ll feeling between the cast members (Cumberbatch and Freeman) but I tend to think it’s simply a case of them both now being actors with a capital ‘A.’

    Back in the day, the tabloids made them out to have been best buddies, and more recently the tabloids have claimed that there's some sort of bad blood between them, but I've seen absolutely no evidence of either situation.  I did see one interview where the reporter blatantly misquoted one of them to the other, who apparently took the misquote at face value and responded a bit testily, but that's surely been cleared up by now, perhaps by a friend to had read both the original quote and the response to the misquote.

    5 hours ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    maybe they both have a bit of Basil Rathbone syndrome (they don’t want to risk being mainly viewed as Sherlock and John?)

    Freeman has frequently said that he likes a good bit of variety in his work.  But he's also said he might be willing to do more Sherlock every now and then.

    5 hours ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    does the arrival of a baby hint at no plans for more episodes? I don’t know.

    The only hint along those lines that I can think of is the title of the most recent episode, "The Final Problem" -- but of course Moftiss are well aware that ACD was persuaded to come back after using that title!

    5 hours ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    So we have no real hints on the likelihood of another series but I seemed to recall one of them (or both) hinting at the possibility of a one-off?

    There have been some rather vague comments from Moftiss regarding the possibility of another something (don't recall that they were terribly specific).  And yes, one or both actors have said they might do another "special" -- though they appeared to be speaking only for themselves, rather than quoting Moftiss.

    5 hours ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    I’m perhaps a little surprised that they haven’t considered a movie?

    I kinda hope they don't.  I don't think Moftiss or Hartswood or the BBC have much if any experience doing theatrical movies, so they'd presumably need to get a movie studio into the mix, and the studio would probably want to "improve" things.

    5 hours ago, HerlockSholmes said:

    Im off to London in 2 weeks time

    Could you swing by 187 North Gower Street and see if Speedy's is still there and if Chris still owns it?  About a year ago he said the business was for sale but they were not closing -- last time I checked there didn't seem to have been any updates.  If you can go there in the morning or very early afternoon (i.e., when they're open, not on Sundays), you could grab a bite and maybe ask someone for the latest news.


  9. Sorry, Bev, I should have said "analogous" -- since my point was that neither the oath nor the coronation is what makes the person a president or a monarch.

    But I'm still a bit puzzled by your strong objection to the monarchy, perhaps because I'm not all that well versed in what a modern British King can and cannot do.  My impression is that (other than his clout within the Royal Family itself) his role is mostly ceremonial -- e.g., waving at people and dubbing the occasional knight -- and the "kingdom" is actually ruled by Parliament, mostly the House of Commons.

    Which brings up a related issue:  What is the current role of the House of Lords, do they still have any power to speak of, and do you object to them as well?


  10. Alex re-re-re-watched Dirty Dancing a few days ago, and I happened to walk into the room near the end, when the Kellerman's staff is (repeatedly) performing their resort's "anthem."

    ... which happens to be sung to the same tune as my university's "alma mater" song.  That double whammy got the tune pretty firmly entrenched, and I haven't been able to shake it.

    I used to think that my university had borrowed the tune from Cornell University's "alma mater" song:

    ... and perhaps they did -- but I just now learned that Cornell had already borrowed it from an 1857 ballad called "Annie Lisle" (about a young woman who becomes ill and dies):

    So now that melody is *really* stuck in my head!  But at least I have one less thing to feel guilty about!


    • Like 1
  11. 17 minutes ago, Carol the Dabbler said:

    Apparently Charles automatically became king at the instant of Elizabeth's passing.  Coronation is traditional and ceremonial, but it won't make him the king.

    It's comparable to a new US President taking office.  The oath of office is not what does it, it's the clock.  The 20th Amendment states, "The terms of the President and the Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January...; and the terms of their successors shall then begin."


  12. Apparently Charles automatically became king at the instant of Elizabeth's passing.  Coronation is traditional and ceremonial, but it won't make him the king.

    1 hour ago, besleybean said:

    My whole issue is that there is no discussion.

    We might as well live in Russia!

    Bev, I could very well understand your feelings if the Prime Ministership suddenly became hereditary.  But it doesn't seem to me that Elizabeth's death is quite the time to be discussing whether or not to have a new king. 

    Or are you saying that there should be more effort in general -- not specifically at this time -- toward eliminating or phasing out the monarchy?


    • Like 1
  13. 54 minutes ago, besleybean said:

     I am republican and frankly furious at the immedate installation of a king.

    Apparently that's simply the tradition, and tradition is, after all, the foundation of the current Royal Family.  Near as I understand it, they haven't held much actual power for quite some time.

    If anyone's planning to see the British royalty demoted, now would be an extremely awkward time, what with a good many people feeling grief and even disorientation.  Best to wait till the matter can be discussed calmly.  I've read that the new King is wanting to decrease the number of people who are officially considered royalty, which could be considered a step in that direction.


    • Like 1
  14. 11 hours ago, Arcadia said:

    When I was younger I would have said yes. Now, though ... yeah, dentistry.....

    I don't care to end up with full dentures (like both of my parents), and I suspect that was the best that could be hoped for in the late 1800s.

    Fortunately, after years of disappointing results from one dentist after another, I recently found a detail-oriented fellow who quickly got my mouth into good shape -- though I still need to make appointments for three implants, so I'd better stay here in the 21st century.


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