Tag Archives: Lord of the Rings

James Gandolfini of “The Sopranos” dead at 51


I was never a fan of The Sopranos, having watched 10 minutes of an episode and got turned off by the abundant use of the F-word as punctuation.

Nevertheless, it’s still shocking to learn of Gandolfini’s death from a heart attack. Crikey! He was only 51 years old.

Nikki Finke and Nellie Andreeva report for Dateline.com, June 19, 2013:

Actor James Gandolfini died suddenly after a suspected heart attack while on holiday in Rome to attend the Taormina Film Festival in Sicily. He was 51. Gandolfini will be forever known for his portrayal of mob boss Tony Soprano on the seminal HBO series The Sopranos, which won him three Emmy Awards. [...]

Overweight, balding, rough around the edges with a thick New Jersey accent, Gandolfini was the opposite of a marquee leading man, destined to be a character actor, and yet he proved through his masterful acting that he could make Tony Soprano sexy and smart, towering and powerful. his portrayal was one of TV’s largest-looming TV anti-heroes — the schlub we loved, the cruel monster we hated, the anxiety-ridden husband and father we wanted to hug when he bemoaned, “I’m afraid I’m going to lose my family. [...]

Born in 1961 in Westwood, New Jersey, Gandolfini’s official bio says the Rutgers graduate spent years as a Manhattan bouncer and nightclub manager. He discovered his lifelong profession in the late 1980s when a friend took him to an acting class. He and made his Broadway debut in the 1992 revival of A Streetcar Named Desire with Alec Baldwin and Jessica Lange. [...]

Gandolfini’s death at 51 is a reminder to us that life is fleeting.

Use your time well, for we will be asked by our Lord what use we made of the time He’d given us. (Matthew 25:14-30)

“All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.” – Gandalf, LOTR: Fellowship of the Ring


Fun Quiz: Are you a Hobbit, Dwarf, or Elf?

It’s no secret that I’m a huge J.R.R. Tolkien fan geek. So is Trail Dust. ;)

Not surprisingly, both of us –separately — have already seen The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, the first of Sir Peter Jackson’s three movies of Tolkien’s book. And we both give it an enthusiastic “thumbs up”. :D

For Tolkien fans, here’s a fun short quiz to find out which Hobbit character you most resemble. Click here!

hobbit quiz

I’m told I’m a furry-footed Bilbo Baggins!

P.S. If you’re planning to see The Hobbit: AUJ, make sure you pee first ’cause the movie’s nearly 3 hours long. Also, I suggest you NOT go to the movie, expecting the Good vs. Evil Sturm und Drang of Lord of the Rings. The Hobbit takes place 60 years before LOTR, a lighter-hearted time in Middle-earth.

H/t TheOneRing.net, the best Tolkien fan site, ever.


Fun Saturday Game!

Here’s a fun game to start our weekend!

Boys and girls, can you identify what’s in Pic #3?

#1: Ringwraiths in Lord of the Rings

#2: A Harry Potter dementer

#3: ???

H/t my friend Mark S. McGrew (who’s running for El Paso County Sheriff) for pic #3!


You Know You’re LOTR Obsessed When…

This one is for you my friend. :D Stumbled upon it. This is only first 75 of 388

—————————————– Sam G.——————————————-

Just to get your blood going before battle. Ride for the Fellowship.

Your AOL screen name is Elbereth.

You can pronounce Nirnaeth Arnoediad.

The opponents in your MS Hearts game are named Morgoth, Sauron and Ungoliant.

You have a decided opinion on the question of the two Glorfindels.

You understand #4.

Your thesis was entitled “On the Valar and their Treament of the Noldor”

When watching The Two Towers, you must fight the urge to scream, “THERE WERE NO ELVES, NEITHER FROM IMLADRIS NOR LÓRIEN, IN THE BATTLE OF THE HORNBURG!

But you mourn Haldir anyway.

It’s not “hello”, it’s “Hail and well met.”

You know the difference between Sindarin and Quenya.

You use Shire reckoning.

You can recite the names of all the Kings (and the four Ruling Queens) of Númenor.

You think Ar-Pharazon was a louse.

Your twin sons are named Elladan and Elrohir.

Your baseball bat had a name, too: Narsil. And when it broke and had to be taped up, you re-named it Anduril.

Finarfin is your role model.

Given a map of Middle Earth, you can instantly locate Rivendell, Lórien, Minas Tirith, and Edoras.

Your vacation house is on your private island, which happens to be named Tol Eressea.

You can trace Eldarion’s bloodline all the way back to Thingol and Melian.

When life sucks, you move westward.

You know Gil-galad’s real name.

You know who Nerwen is.

Spock is your favorite Star Trek chaacter.

Your idea for the Big Dig is to rebuild Boston on the plan of Gondolin.

TV just isn’t the same as a palantír.

You have learnt to blow smoke rings.

You have a weed patch.

You own a shipbuilding company named Círdan’s Crafts.

You know you’re obsessed with LotR when…you no longer answer to your real name, but rather, you prefer to be called Elerial, daughter of Bruce, of the house of Smith. (by Shari M.)

30-64 Submitted by Melanie McCorkle

You talk about nothing but LOTR. All the time.

You’ve read LOTR more than once, to the surprise and disgust of your peers. (Note: I think most hardcore LOTR fans have read LOTR several times… – Nevermore)

Your family (who don’t like LOTR) know many of the lines to FOTR from walking past you watching it, or hearing you quote it.

Your favorite CD’s are the LOTR soundtracks, even though you don’t like classical music.

Your teachers even tell you you need to lighten up on LOTR.

When you’re helping your little brother with his himework and it says “The Lord of the Rings” you want to frame that paper when he gets it back.

When that homework paper says “The Hobbit” on the other side you don’t know which side to frame facing out and decide to rotate it every week or so.

When you can’t find your LOTR CD (Heavan forbid) you flip out and start humming one of the songs to make yourself feel better.

If someone likes LOTR they DON’T talk to you, because they don’t want a 3 hour lecture on how Tolkien, not Jackson, was the creator, and how Jackson majorly screwed some things up.

You have read/own 5 or more Tolkien books (counting LOTR as 1)

People are careful not to say LOTR 1, LOTR 2, and LOTR 3 around you, because you’ll yell at them.

When someone says they don’t like it you exclaim: “What?! How can you say that?!” and smack them.

When your “friend” says she’s tired of hearing you talk about it you smack her and continue talking.

When people say you’re obsessed you say: “And proud of it!” the way Frodo does and smack a mug down on a table.

The tiniest things remind you of LOTR, like the way the mirror you got for Christmas that has the lights that reflect all the way back makes your eyes look like Galadriel’s.

Or the way some people have Hobbit-hair (which makes you wonder if they have hairy feet)

When you’re watching TV and they even show a picture of something from LOTR for a nanosecond you can tell exactly where it came from, and what’s going on, even if you only glance up to see it and there’s no sound to it.

When you see that picture you turn the volume WAY up and pay close attention to that comercial from then on.

When you see a word that looks anything like something from LOTR you read it as that word, like when you see Fodor’s Map of the Caribbean (?) you read it as Frodo’s…

You spend your time copying poems from the books.

You have a portion of your bookshelf dedicated to Tolkien, but for some reason Tolkien books seem to be scattered all over your bedroom, and not one is in the Tolkien Shrine.

When you do put your books together, it’s not on your shelf, it’s on your dresser, where everyone can see the 3 and a half foot stack of books all bearing the same name: J. R. R. Tolkien.

You truly wish you had pointy ears, or had a long braided beard, or were 3 and a half feet tall.

You don’t mind Aragorn’s greasy hair (that much)

You know the movie by heart.

If (somehow, and I don’t know how this would happen) your friends see a picture of one of the LOTR actors they cover your eyes till you’re past.

If they don’t catch the picture in time they groan in agony at the inevitable exclamation of “He was in LOTR!” and a long explanation of his life, his character’s life, his part in the movie, what is favorite thing to do in New Zealand was, and the precise location of his Elvish nine tattoo (provided he’s a member of the Fellowship).

You watched the Oscars just to see if TTT won anything.

You almost threw a chair at the TV when it only got 2.

You cracked up when Mickey pulled the Ring out of his pocket, and thought Sean Astin’s face was the funniest thing you’ve ever seen.

You seriously beg your parents for archery/swordfighting lessons.

You want to take a family vacation to New Zealand to see all the places the movie was filmed.

You’ve watched all 16 hours of bonus “stuff” on the extended DVD.

You read every parody you can find and love them all.

You start using words like “atop” in your stories (if you write).

65-75 submitted by KRRouse

You wear a gold ring on a chain everywhere you go.

You are careful never to put your ring on.

You hiss at people and yell “Get away from my Precious!” when they get too close to your ring.

You try to bite their fingers off if they put your ring on.

You scream “My Precious is lost!” if you lose your ring.

You excuse yourself from class so you can read your copy of Lord of the Rings in the bathroom.

You excuse yourself from class so you can work on perfecting your Gollum voice in the batroom.

You ask people for the recipe for Lembas.

You complain about your feet not being hairy.

You always say “Mellon” before you open a door.

You live in a hole in the backyard.

H/T      http://www.lotrspoofs.net/obsessedlist.html

An Early Christmas Present for Hobbits

The trailer for the 2-part Hobbit is out!

The movies, by Sir Peter Jackson, are based on the peerless J.R.R. Tolkien’s beloved book, The Hobbit, which he had written as a children’s book, then extended into the more serious The Lord of the Rings (LOTR) trilogy. The Hobbit introduces Bilbo Baggins, uncle of LOTR‘s Frodo, and shows how Bilbo found the evil golden ring.

The first Hobbit movie is scheduled to hit movie theaters next Christmas. Being a huge Tolkien-Jackson fan, I can hardly wait….


The Dwarves Unveiled

Since I named this blog “Fellowship of the Minds” and took “Eowyn” as my nom de plume, it’s no surprise that I’m a HUGE J.R.R. Tolkien geek.

If you’re also a fan, you’d know that Sir Peter Jackson, who directed and produced (and co-wrote the script) the Lord of the Rings trilogy, is in the process of making The Hobbit — two movies based on the book that Tolkien wrote before the Rings trilogy.

In the course of the past few weeks, Jackson’s been releasing photos of the dwarves, by bits and pieces. Today, he released the pic of the last dwarf — that of Thorin, dwarf king and leader of the expedition to reclaim the treasures stolen by the evil dragon Smaug.

Thorin is magnificent !!!

Here’s a pic of Thorin and the other dwarves lined up behind him.

From left to right:

Bofur, Bifur, Nori, Ori, Dori, Balin, Thorin (in foreground), Dwalin, Oin, Gloin (father of Gimli in Lord of the Rings), Fili, Kili

You can read descriptions of each dwarf on TheOneRing.net.


Did You Watch the Academy Awards?

Last Sunday, Hollywood had its annual self-love fest called the Academy Awards, aka the Oscar’s. Word is that although some 36 million Americans watched the show, that’s a 10% drop from the year before.

I haven’t watched the Academy Awards for years now; the last time was 7 years ago in 2004 when Lord of the Rings: Return of the King was a contender and  swept all 11 categories in which it was nominated. So disinterested am I that I haven’t even seen any of the flicks that won the Best Picture Award since then: Million Dollar Baby (2004), Crash (2005), The Departed (2006), No Country For Old Men (2007), Slumdog Millionaire (2008), The Hurt Locker (2009).

From the ubiquitous and incessant media coverage of the 2011 awards, you’d think who wins the Oscar is of earthshaking importance. So I’m curious if readers of Fellowship of the Minds watched the show last Sunday — and why you watched or didn’t watch.


Best 2011 Superbowl Commercial

In the humble opinion of a major Lord of the Rings geek  ;)

H/t TheOneRing.net


When We Lose Hope…

Source: xkcd

H/t TheOneRing


The Coolest And Biggest Train Set In World

The 250,000 lights are rigged up to a system which mimics night and day by automatically turning them on and off

This is unbelievable- I’ve never seen anything like it ever. Check it out, you will be amazed and please make sure to watch the video at the bottom of this e-mail to see this in action – you won’t believe it.

This is the world’s biggest train set which covers 1,150 square meters (12,380 square feet), features almost six miles of track and is still not complete. It is expected to be finished in 2014, when the train set will cover more than 1,800 square meters (19, 376 sq ft) and feature almost 13 miles of track, by which time detailed models of parts of France, Italy and the UK will have been added.

The scenery includes 900 signals, 2,800 buildings, 4,000 cars – many with illuminated headlights…. The set covers six regions including America, Switzerland, Scandinavia, Germany and the Austrian Alps.

<b>You just have to watch this in action. Use link below.</b>


It comprises 700 trains with more than 10,000 carriages and agons. The longest train is 46 ft long. The scenery includes 900 signals, 2,800 buildings, 4,000 cars – many with illuminated headlights and 200,000 individually designed figures. Thousands of kilograms of steel and wood was used to construct the scenery. The set is on display to the public and is so big that they employ more than 160 people to show visitors around their creation.


Twin brothers Frederick and Gerrit Braun, 41, began work on the ‘Miniatur Wonderland’ in 2000:

..and 160,000 individually designed figures

The whole system is controlled from a massive high-tech nerve centre

Mount Rushmore..

 ~Steve~                 H/T Richard