Thursday, August 30, 2012

Identity confusion

My Fool has gone away for another few weeks, leaving me happily ensconced in my Rivendell Love Grotto with pseudo-Supergirl. It appears that we made an understandable error in the Dancing Goat the other day (anybody could have done it!), and ran off with the wrong young lady dressed in blue and red.

When quizzed about her name, she merely replied "What would you like it to be, handsome?". I thought this was a perfectly acceptable answer, and I answered "Well, can you be Supergirl?" "Sure", she replied, and everything was happy again.

Pseudo-Supergirl and I have plenty of supplies, but are making determined efforts to deplete them as quickly as possible. This makes writing my diary a tricky exercise as my diary keeps moving for some reason.

I think I shall desist for now. I really need a rest.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Aegthil's Love-Fest Grotto

Some time ago my Fool told me of an aging rock star who loaded up with 100 gallons of expensive vodka, a bucket of cocaine, and a Russian teenager 40 years younger than he was, and took the whole lot off to an Irish mansion, to while away the hours. Apparently his family, worried at the thought of what this combination of things might do to a 60-year old, burst into his love palace and dragged him off kicking and screaming.

The Russian teenager was blonde, so the story goes, although I don't think this has all that much effect on the story. It just makes you wonder what on earth the rocker was thinking of. Who on earth would want to leave this earth, in a blaze of drunken glory, in the arms of a blonde? Well, never mind about that.

I've always rather liked this story and have had it in mind to try for myself one of these days. Not that I am an aging rock star I hasten to add, I am a rock star who is unconstrained by the expectations and limitations of extreme youth. Which doesn't make me old. Not even close. Nope.

Anyway, as I said, I've had it in mind to try for myself, but never before found the perfect partner. This all changed when Supergirl came into my life. Well, to be strictly honest, she hasn't yet come into my life, not as such, but she will when I accost her in the Dancing Goat tomorrow, present her with a bunch of flowers, offer her three weeks of unlimited weed and triple-distilled cider, and haul her off with me to a Rivendell Love Grotto.

I cannot imagine she will refuse the offer. But just in case, I've asked Beorbrand, Carica, Bluebonnet and Anarwald to come along to the rendezvous, not just so that they're implicated and I can blackmail them later, but also to help with any necessary persuasions.

The only possible problem is that I'm not entirely sure what Supergirl looks like except that she wears a nifty supersuit in red and blue. However, I'm quite sure that soul will call to soul, eye will meet eye across the crowded room, and two hearts will beat as one.

(Just to be on the safe side, if you're not Supergirl best to avoid the Dancing Goat tomorrow. Especially if you tend to wear red and blue. I would hate for there to be any unfortunate identity confusion.)

And so I leave my readers with the immortal words: "I am just going off to Rivendell. I may be some time."

Wish me luck.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Deeds and Virtues

Now, I know what you're all thinking. You're thinking that Aegthil is already so virtuous that he doesn't need to be concerned about doing any more deeds. Well, and you'd be right. Last I looked I had

Patience: Level 50.
Tolerance:  Level 48
Talent: Level 308
Chastity: Level 304

I think it's interesting to note that I appear to be even more talented than I am chaste, which, if you think about it, is pretty impressive.

But that's not what I wanted to talk about, really. It's not all about me.

This is about my Fool's children. They suffer from the fairly predictable hereditary defect of terminal stupidity and annoyancyism, but that's hardly their fault I guess. Nevertheless, they didn't have to make such a meal of how deeds and virtues work in Middle Earth.

Fool's Children: Hey, Dad, why are you killing all those bats.
My Fool: They aren't bats, you little morons.
Fool's Children: Yes they are. If you weren't so old and blind you'd see that.
My Fool: They are not. They are dragonets.
Children: Yeah, whatever, Dad. Why are you killing them?
Fool: To get Aegthil's Zeal up.
Children: Huh? What?
Fool: To make Aegthil more Zealous. To increase his Zeal. What don't you understand about that, you little turd heads?
Children: You're trying to tell us that .... killing bats increases your.... zeal?
Fool: Yes.
Children: Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha

(Awkward silence)

Children: So how do you increase your Patience, Dad? By killing cows? I mean you really need that. You REALLY need that. How about improving your temper? Killing little dogs?
Fool: Close.
Children: Ha Ha Ha Ha etc.

(Blessed silence falls...)

Children: Ha Ha Ha Ha etc. You get to be more patient by killing cows?! Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha etc. And then do you 'Run Away' if you fall off a cliff? Ha Ha Ha Ha etc. What a stupid game.
Fool: *sigh*

If it's not bad enough that I have to kill a million bloody dragonets, I have to listen to such conversations while I do it.

Maybe I need to work on my Patience a bit. Get it up over 70. Might help.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Happy Birthday, Anthemisi

What do bobbits eat for their birthdays? I have no idea. I doubt I want to know. This whole bobbit preoccupation with food and pies and pies and food and more food and eating and food and pies is all a little strange to me. Food is what you eat because you have to, otherwise you'd drop dead. You stick it in one end, it comes out the other, and you stay alive. Ho hum. Very dull.

I suppose this is why I've never been able to spend much time in the Shire. I mean, apart from it being all Twee and Fru Fru, and even Cutsiepie,  that whole area has this intense food preoccupation. Any jobs you get given there are all Twee and Fru Fru Foody kinds of jobs. Baking delicious pies. Saving dear wee squirrels. Eating delicious carrots. Digging up healthy potatoes. Ticking your inner ear with a feather to have a good vomit so you can eat some more. You know, that kind of thing.

The Shire just isn't me.

Anyway, what sparked off this little rant? Oh yes, I remember. What do bobbits eat for their birthdays. As I said, I don't know, I have never known, and I don't want to know, but I do know that it was Anthemisi's birthday today, and she's a bobbit.

So at BBB we played dear old Anthemisi a special birthday song. Arranged by my idiot of a Fool, which is why it ends so abruptly. I shall insist that he rewrite the last bit to make it a bit more acceptable. If you want, you can play it yourself. And if you fix up the ending before my idiot Fool does, send it to him. He needs help.
(Edit: OK, fine. I fixed the ending, you annoying bloody minstrel. But I didn't bother making a new mp3 file to prove it. I hope you're happy now. Well, actually, let me rephrase that. I don't give a rat's turd whether you're happy or not, but I still fixed the ending. The Fool.)

In other news, the infamous and disgustingly nasty Melilot, or Mellilot, or Melillot, or possibly even Mmellillott, did a very effective sabotage job on the BBB concert. With a pighorn. She is getting her pay docked. My idiot Fool was laughing so hard he almost wet himself. But the rest of the BBB concert was the usual smash hit, with all the lovely ladies salivating at the sight of me.

No, really, it's true.  We end with a drool pool outside the Dancing Goat.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

I am in love with Supergirl!

No, really, I am. It's real this time. It's true. It's forever.

Forget the faithless Wrenaya, forget Joelene, forget Shinarra (woops, was I not meant to say that? Sorry.), forget Harperella..... oh, wait, I never mentioned Harperella, bad mistake... anyway, forget all them.

There is only one. Supergirl. Supergirl of Lorien. I think she may have another name but I haven't learned it yet. Never mind about that.

She has it all. She has style. She has class. She has the outfit. She has the attitude. And she's super. Very super. Much like myself, of course, except that she's a girl and I'm not.

I must get my Fool to write a Supergirl Super Fanfare, to be used at appropriate Super Times, such as when Supergirl enters the Prancing Pony, or Supergirl kills a boar, or Supergirl first sees Aegthil. Just as long as my stupid Fool doesn't write about it in my Diary. He's always so damn serious when he writes in my Diary, like anyone actually gives a shit about what he has to say. I know I don't. I know YOU don't.

I must send Supergirl some flowers. I wonder how I can do that? Hmmm..... I know that she is going to fall in love with me, too, but first we have to meet. The flowers might help with that. And I'll have to make sure she doesn't hear about BBB or Madame Celestine's Establishment for Young Ladies. Or Wrenaya, come to think of it. Or Shinarra. Or Delna. Or Briamil.

Actually, let's just not mention CECs at all. That might be best.

Oh, oh, my love, wait for me, as I shall wait for thee, though all the world shall turn at last to dust, and all the stars shall descend into the darkness of oblivion, yet shall my love for thee shine like a beacon unto the very end of time.

Wait for me, my only love. I'm coming, Supergirl. I'm coming.

Er .... let me rephrase that.....

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Blues for Kyrian, by the Fool

This is the other piece I wrote (mostly) while I was away, to keep myself entertained. Blues for Kyrian, mostly because Kyrian is great and anyway she asked me.

Unfortunately, this one didn't work out all that well. I used a different blues pattern, following (in spirit, not in detail) the song "See that my grave is kept clean", by Blind Lemon Jefferson, written around 1927 or so. One of the all-time great blues songs, but not your usual 12-bar.

One trouble I find with writing music in LOTRO is that the music system is severely constrained, particularly with regard to instrument type and rhythmic variation. So, once you've written a couple of blues songs it's difficult to find new ways to speak the blues language, without it merely sounding like a rehash of older songs.

I tend to fall back on overcomplicated orchestration, which kind of spoils the essential simplicity of the blues sound, turning the whole piece into a sort of big band semi-blues, rather than the purer blues sound I was striving for. I realise my orchestration is overcomplicated, but I don't know how to fix it, without simply writing Bluebonnett's Blues again.

Mind you, it didn't help that I used the same rhymthmic pattern as Bluebonnett's Blues, as well as the same horn line in spots. Pure laziness, that.

Neither do I like the ending, but all my other crazy endings sounded like Bluebonnett's Blues again. So I just cut it dead, as inspiration failed to strike.

The solo passage is a bit short, too, but that's just pure laziness. After I've coded up one time through, I  just can't be bothered doing it all again. In real life I would solo a whole lot more than once. More than twice even :-) So I feel guilty cutting the solo passages so short, but hey, it could be worse. 

Monday, August 13, 2012

Witchypoo's Soukous Surprise, by the Fool

Sarenade sent me some lyrics and asked me to write a tune for them. So I did. The song is called "The Witch's Vale", and the lyrics can be found at the end of the abc file. But not at the end of the mp3 file, which doesn't have lyrics at all. Funny that.

I tried to write a Soukous song. Soukous is from the Conga and is sometimes called Congolese (or African) Rhumba, as it can sound a lot like ... well... rhumba. It's characterised by a number of things, including a distinctive shuffle rhythm on the percussion, a high repeating guitar line, and complex bass lines much like reggae. A typical chord pattern is I-IV-I-V, which I've copied here. It just goes over and over and over and over again, with that twangy guitar and a pounding beat. Pretty cool stuff, really. My darling wife is from the Congo and so I've listened to a LOT of Soukous over the years. I've never played it though, so I don't really have a good feel for it.

Anyway, it doesn't work very well in LOTRO, but hey, at least the song came free so Sarenade can hardly complain. I got lazy on the horn solo and just made it rather boring. I was sick of Witchypoo by then, so a quick solo and out. Run while you still can.