That was Interesting or maybe not

vlcsnap-2014-11-06-14h35m57s239Moving on from thoughts of Time Warner’s state of affairs, since it’s not much fun to talk finance or economics. No, that’s not a true statement. I love to talk finance and economics, but I know most people hate it. See why I stay on fluff subjects most of the time here? The serious me is not that much fun and likes to talk about things like the Time Warner/Comcast merger, why Facebook’s IPO was lousy, or about my fascination with Elon Musk and Tesla and renewable energy, or the health care sector or other fun subjects like Quantitative Easing. I really love to talk about Quantitative Easing. Don’t get me started on that one.

Yes, I’m really going to stop all this talk that makes your eyes glaze over and go back to talking about the dwarf actors, which was my initial plan but did not include talking about the snubbing of the Kiwi dwarves. I was more or less going to ignore that until, well, I couldn’t.

Speaking of which, I’ve noticed something about that situation. It’s not a situation to a significant number of fans of the Hobbit movies. It seems the Richard Armitage fans are mostly the ones who were offended if the current chatter is anything to go by. The Tolkien fans, or more specifically the Ringers (fans of Peter Jackson’s Tolkien movies and not to be confused with Tolkienists who are not fans of the movies for the most part) are pretty quiet. This issue doesn’t seem to be a big deal to them. Yep, I’m saying it appears they really don’t care if the Kiwi actors make it to the premiere or not. And that surprises me. It really does. Oh sure, we know the TheOneRing.net got shut down on this issue, but are they the only voice for the Ringers? Maybe so. Maybe the Ringers aren’t as prevalent as I thought.

I could be so wrong about all of this, but that’s how it seems.

Further, it’s made me wonder if perhaps I’ve given the Ringers too much credence as something truly organic and principled instead of something manufactured by someone who had a vested financial interest. Okay, yes, I’m being disingenuous. I’ve known for the last few years that there is an effort to market to and through the Ringers. Because I was taught not to say anything if I couldn’t say something nice and encouraging, I haven’t said anything about this. But the incident with the Kiwi actors bugs me enough to break that rule.

Someone slap me ’cause if I really get rolling here, I may get so candid that I say something I really regret.

So am I just a fan bitching? Maybe, but then again, I have been cultivated to be a fan of the actors in this movie, and so it’s natural I would be unhappy with some of them being left out of the world premiere. Yep, I’m saying that if anyone is to blame for my feelings about that, it’s the powers that be who drew my attention to these guys in the first place– Richard Armitage excepted of course.

No worries that I’ll go further than this post. This is the last of my venting about it. I think it’s all off my chest now, and I can move on to more fun topics. Like my piece on Graham McTavish. But I’m going to do McTavish a favor and not put his piece right up against these rants.

Timeout for New Zealand — a year ago

It’s stunning to me the earthquake in New Zealand occurred a year ago today, and I’m embarrassed to admit I probably would have paid little attention to its aftermath if not for Richard Armitage. But what a difference a year makes. Since ‘The Hobbit’ began filming there, I have met some very lovely New Zealanders, and they have made my association with the country personal.

It occurred to me early this morning how much I feel a kinship with the Kiwis, and really all of the people in that part of the world, when I was reading about experiences during the quake.

Famous Cantabrians’ quake experiences

Cullen Smith | Wednesday, February 22, 2012 6:00

Renowned Christchurch children’s author Margaret Mahy, OBE, was on the move in Beckenham when the quake struck.

“I was in a car going down Colombo St. I thought a wheel had come off but the driver, my helper and chauffeur Lisa Anson, said ‘no, it’s an earthquake’.”

The 75-year-old former librarian said they immediately headed back home to Governors Bay via Dyers Pass.

“We were a bit apprehensive. We didn’t know if the road was open or if we could get through. The earthquake was quite jolty.

Read the rest here.

Mark Hadlow’s situation in particular got to me. My father was in a plane crash when I was a kid. When we first got the news, it was fairly grim. The plane had been mangled almost beyond recognition. It was an hour before we knew if Dad was alive, and I will never forget the feeling of terror.

In our case, my father was very bruised yet able to walk away, but I know there were those in Christchurch who were not as fortunate as my family and Mark Hadlow’s. My heart still goes out to them. If I had it my way, there would be no death and destruction, and there would always be joy in the morning. It’s morning a year later, and I continue to pray that those so severely affected are able to continue healing. Knowing what I now do about the personality of the people from Down Under and Slightly to One Side, I’m confident they have it in perspective but still wanted to share my thoughts.

And a message of hope from their countrymen.