Today's Date in the Shire
26 Foreyule
T.A. 3018 - The Fellowship of the Ring departs Rivendell at dusk.
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Sunday, 8 June 2003


(Letter 013)

Dear Grave Matters,

I love baseball and try very hard to be the best player on my team. I have a great ERA and I seldom maker errors. I never miss a practice and I am always early to every game. I do all of these things and still the coach sits me on the bench and plays other kids that aren't as good. It's unfair! What can I do to convince my coach that I'm the man for the job?

Bored on the bench

Dear Bored,

I certainly can sympathize with your plight, as I too have been embarrasingly set aside while other, less competent people have muddled their way through tasks I would have performed with honor and glory. I understand how difficult it is to have earned a reputation over a long period of time, only to be completely overlooked when you were needed most. It is unbelievable that millenia of dedicated service can go unrewarded. How could this have happened? I'll tell you how. Neoptism and sexism! That's right. The old high and mighty Lord 'o the Valley decided his daughter would fit my role better than I fit it myself! And that hairy little director thought the viewing public would respond better to a woman! It is unfair. Unjust! I could have been a star!

Glorfindel


(Letter 014)

Dear whoever-is-answering-this,

The problem lies with my mother. All of my friends have instant messenger, but my mother says taht there are too many weirdos online, and she wont let me get it. My frinds have never had any encounters with weirdos. Should I disrespect my mothers feelings and get I.M. behind her back? In the name of the Valar, please help!

~No I.M. in Rivendell
Of course there is no I.M. in Rivendell. The palantiri, or instant messengers, as you would call them, are not for the foolish, or to be used lightly. Nothing against Imladris, of course, but the Elves relinquished them long ago. They are for the wise and the strong among the mortals. Of course, that Great Grey Meddler would keep even the great and learned from using them to save mankind. The fool! I don't suppose your mother is akin to Mithrandir. Tell me, does she wear a large pointed hat and grey cloak when she leaves the house?

Denethor, Steward of Minas Tirith


(Letter 015)

Hello, my friend and I have a problem. And we don't want this problem. Well, the problem is, we speak a bit oddly. Instead, like ordinary teenagers, of saying can't, we say cannot. Instead of saying wouldn't, we say would not. And all of those words that end with 't, we say not instead. Instead of saying yeah, we say yes yes! Also, we sometimes lapse into a Scottish accent, though we hail from the state of Utah in the country of America. Tell us, is this a large or small problem? Judging by the stares we get in public places, we would say that it just may be a large, nasty problem. Could you help us?

Neveah & Meeb...again...

P.S. We already go to counseling, so, may we send 3 GRAVE MATTERS?
Hm! It is very odd that people in your land prefer to unnecessarily shorten their words. Hoom! After all, nothing worth saying is worth shortening, as they say. But there is hope for these people, since they are properly staring and not just giving quick glances. So much knowledge can be gained by a good, long stare. Nothing important is missed in a blink, as they also say, or did say when such sayings were popular. Are they still? Hrum, now! Such a strange combination of hastiness and patience in, hm hoom, how did you call your land? Utah? I do not find that place on my lists.

Udn in the shadow of Teeth
Upburnan on cold Snowbourne
Utgarsec splashing Walls of Night
Utumno the dark Deep

Hoom, hm! No, it is not in the lists. Perhaps some day you will have more time to tell me about your Utah. In answer to your question, you should continue to use as many words as are necessary to say what you mean. Do not let the attitudes of others prod you to hastiness. The problem is theirs and not yours.

Treebeard


(Letter 016)

Dear Whoever may read this,

I adore cats. That's about all you can say. But lately, my friends have taken to looking at me very strangely. All right, so I meow when my name is called. And am firmly convinced that an ancestor of mine was a Priestess of Bastet, the Egyptian Cat Goddess (even though my ancestors were Scottish...).
I also have a deep empathy with felines, and I really do believe I can talk to them. The thing is, how do I get my friends to realize that I am not crazy, just in love with cats?

Yours Cattishly,

Lady Meowzalot
I have never understood the prejudice against women in positions of power. So we have an obsession with felines. So we sell security secrets to the enemy. So we betray the trust of all around us. Is that any reason to abandon us at sea? Do you know how often cats get seasick? Im sorry, what was the question?

Queen Beruthiel


See Questions from other weeks.

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*DISCLAIMER: Middle-earth characters are fictional, as are the answers they might give in Grave Matters. The Barrow-Downs is not responsible for anything that happens as a result of following the suggestions found here.


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