Wednesday, August 26, 2009

roast mutton.

i love 'the hobbit'. granted, i haven't read the full lord of the rings trilogy, but i think what i've read (the first of them all), i still prefer bilbo to frodo. at least his book. this is for lots of reasons, but i think a big part of it is the fact that in reading it i was introduced to all sorts of new creatures, peoples, ideas and so on and so forth that when i read the fellowship it just didn't have the same kick in the pants as found in 'there and back again.'

one chapter is still a favorite. i took the liberty of having this post share the name of the chapter, "roast mutton." the basic summary (starting some way into the chapter) is that bilbo
, being the master thief he is, is assigned by his accompanying dwarves to investigate a fire in the distance of the woods and either befriend the owners, or pilfer some food. he's to give warning if it's dangerous. he is caught by three trolls round the fire, but is able to escape. sadly, the dwarves without the warning have since gone in themselves and been captured and bound, one by one by the said trolls. as things seem worst, the trolls argue and contemplate the fate of the dwarves. all of them involve somehow eating them, but the big debate rests between boiling, bludgeoning to goo, roasting, etc., etc., etc.. luckily, they oafish trolls wind up debating on this point for so long and arguing about whatever they can, really, the morning comes, and with it the sun that turns three trolls to stone. but of course, the narrow escape has more than meets the eye. gandalf (our resident wizard) reveals himself and the fact that he had been perpetuating the arguement the whole time using voices to match each troll and irritating the others to buy time 'til morning. with the dwarves freed, and a key to their lair in hand, they continue on the journey. the trolls are turned to stone because they're each convinced the others are trying to undermine their own efforts or ideas (you could say things about the dwarves as well, but we'll save that for another over-analyitical post). so, lesson learned. when you insist on arguing, whether you're in the wrong or in the right, it usually leads to the same thing. being made of stone, and more generally speaking, stale mates and failure all around. and now to justify the title. the chapter's name comes from the troll's heard conversation prior to bilbo's being caught. a snippet from the text:

"Mutton yesterday, mutton today, and blimey, if it don't look like mutton again tomorrer," said one of the trolls.

"Never a blinking bit of manflesh have we had for long enough," said a second. "What the 'ell William was a-thinkin' of to bring us into these parts at all, beats me - and the drink runnin' short, what's more," he said jogging the elbow of William, who was taking a pull at his jug.

William choked. "Shut yer mouth!" he said as soon as he could. "Yer can't expect folk to stop here for ever just to be et by you and Bert. You've et a village and a half between yer, since we come down from the mountains. How much more d'yer want? And time's been up our way, when yer'd have said 'thank yer Bill' for a nice bit o' fat valley mutton like what this is." He took a big bite off a sheep's leg he was toasting, and wiped his lips on his sleeve.

they were fed up with roast mutton. they wanted to eat man flesh. is that so wrong? i don't think so. not for a troll, anyway. so i think to myself, "i enjoy roast mutton. but every night? i want to eat human," speaking allegorically. and then, pop! in comes a hobbit. a little thing like that would be easy enough and, though not a full person, better meat just the same. lose the hobbit. that's a shame. gain a bunch of dwarves. what a stroke of luck. spend the whole night bickering and turn to stone. that's the biggest shame. that they had what they wanted (moreso in a way, because trolls hate dwarves. eating them would be like an ultimate double whammy), and then it's gone. all gone. sometimes it's like i'm currently in one of two phases of the story. a) lost the hobbit, now hoping to have dwarves show up, or b) bickering until sunrise.

neither one is very satisfying, so at some point i'm hoping to move into the the-hobbit's-a-hero-let's-go-retrieve-the-trolls'-treasure portion of the story soon. that would be nice.

on a seperate note, but one that helped to pick the chapter's name, i grew out some infant mutton chops this weekend, which was very enjoyable. they only had just short of a week to grow, so nothing to impressive, but it was fun to have them while i did. from thursday to tuesday around 4:30 they were still around. but, then they had to come off. but they live on in spirit, and will continue to live on during weekends, holidays, and school breaks.

anyway, long winded, probably pretty boring, and completely normal for this blog; this post is done. thanks for reading, and i'll see you next time.

trace lund


  1. Interesting post, but is it just my browser or do certain words look like they are in a different font? Starting with the word "thief" in the third sentence of the second paragraph. A few more instances are peppered throughout the entry. Put them all together and you get:

    thief dwarves dwarves bludgeoning.

    A disturbing picture, what is the secret message?

  2. All this talk of eating people and boiling people is making me slightly ill.

  3. i wish i had seen those infant chops.