F 1 D 0 -- 2001 12 31 at 12 30

Q-Tips. 

We'll get to that. I promise.

Mountain Trolls.

I've seen Harry Potter, and liked it.
I've seen Lord of the Rings, and liked
it. Maybe because both stories include
these Mountain Trolls.

Potter's Troll is a big guy.  He's green,
of course, with a lot of grey. He carries
a big club, and has a penchant for breaking
toilets and sinks in the Ladies Room.

But in the end, he can't be that tough.
There may have been three kids fighting
it, but one was Hermione, who wasn't 
doing much fighting.  One was Harry, 
who wasn't too effective.  So the real
hero was Ron, who waves a stick and
Leviosa, and hits the troll with his 
own club.  Still, let us say Three kids
nail One troll.  Ok?

Frodo's Troll is made of tougher material.

He's about the same as Potter's Troll, 
all things considered. But he's tougher.

He carries a big chain, and can break
buildings. Or whatever that mine is called
from inside.

Orcs don't like them. You have a hundred
or more orcs, and they're still afraid.
They run away screaming.

Our nine heroes battle this monster, and
have lots of good hits. Arrows hit. Spears
hit. Swords hit.

This thing is made of tough stuff.

Now do you remember the wizards fighting?
Where was Gandalf with his electric stick?
Maybe I'd better see the movie again, and
make better notes. I'm glad I got to 
Lord of the Rings.

They've made all of the people of 
middle earth from Britain. They 
should have had Johnny Cash do a 
song, like "Ring of Fire." We needed
to see the middle earth equivalent
of Trailer Park Living.

Ok, Maybe Not.

I guess I'm supposed to read
the books, right?

But I was wondering about that high
tower. The one Gandalf was stranded
on for ages. The other wizard goes 
up there to do Avalanche Magic.
Again, I just have to wonder, why
Gandalf didn't see the magic in the
high places? He could have just stood
up and waved his arms hither and 
thither, and done great things. Like
conjured up his electric staff.

Staffs play an important
role in movies and television.

There were a number of Star Trek
episodes where you have this long
stick with ends on it.  Sort of like
a big Q-Tip for fighting.  

There was one where Kirk is fighting
with Spock, as he's on Vulcan, and
it is part of a mating ritual. There
is a special music that goes with the
fight. 

kroykah.mp3 (983k; large file)

You see, Jim Carey plays in Cable
Guy, and he makes fun of the same
stuff. He even starts to sing the
music.  And then the movie fades to
the original Star Trek adventure 
music. You know, that may have been
the best part of Cable Guy.

Well, now, instead of hearing Ring
of Fire, I'm hearing the Star Trek
adventure music as the two wizards
battle it out. I can imagine all of
this. Can you?

On a Star Trek the Next Generation
episode, Cmdr William Riker meets
his father. They don't get along,
really.  Uh, not at all, really.

What brings them together?

Well, there is this strange evolution of
martial art. But look! It is the Q-Tip
thing again. Oh, they're all dressed
up in protective gear. And they have
a face mask which COVERS THEIR EYES!,
but it is the stick game again. 

And these sticks are Electric Sticks!
Oh, not like the wizards, in Lord of
the Rings, but still special. Aim them
at someone, and they make a noise. That's
special, right?

Well, it was the Next Generation
Q-Tip fight which prepared me for
what happened at The Ex.

You see, A few summers ago, I went 
with Cindy to the exhibition. That 
is the Canadian National Exhibition, 
which shows in Toronto each summer from 
about mid August until Labour Day. We
call it "The Ex."

The Ex is a large midway. The Ex is
a number of theme buildings, getting
more commercial all of the time. The
Ex is now the Metro Toronto Trade Centre,
a huge empty space for Large commercial
exhibitions. The Ex is a place for 
low-end gambling. The Ex is rides for
small kids.  The Ex is rides for big
kids.  And for me, The Ex are buildings
with interesting things to shop for.

I call these things Snake Oil. "It slices,
It dices! It helps you keep the nutrition
in your meals. It will save you thousands
of dollars in your first year. You'll be
younger..."

For the most part, it is all about
spending money on bad junk food, going
into the Food Building, and only finding
more of it. Or going into the Better
Living Centre, and playing pianos on
display, seeing saunas and swim pools,
low water shower heads. All manner
of Snake Oil.

Times are tough. They've had trouble
filling these exhibit halls. It wouldn't
be because they charge the poor vendors
so much for them, huh?

Well, half of the Better Living Centre
was all about exercise.  That means vendor
selling aerobics shoes. But there were
other things too. There was a batting
cage, where you could practice baseball
hitting. A golf cage where you could
try driving. A bicycle area where you
could power a lamp with your legs.

And there was a small area, where people
could battle it out with the Q-Tip sticks.

Now that. THAT was the best part of the
visit to the Ex that year. I remember 
spending hours Cindy there.  

I took Timmy there after that day. It 
was great. They could take these real 
swings at me with the Lirpa or whatever 
T'Pau called these big Q-Tip sticks. They 
were really able to knock me down.  
I got a few hits in there too. Tim and I
spent hours at that too.


That's all I know.