Monthly Archives: August 2022

Largo, Not Profundo

The poor guy in the trailer who had to do a line reading of “Our hearts even bigger ‘n our feet” is Dylan Smith, who is playing “Largo Brandyfoot.”

We all know that “Brandyfoot” is a terrible, terrible misuse of Hobbit name particles, because the “brandy-” in Brandybuck is from the River Baranduin, aka the Brandywine. It’s a river in the Shire, where these Hobbit tribespeople have not yet been.

If you wanted to turn it into a real Hobbit name, it would be Brandifoot, burnt-foot, fire-foot. Kinda sinister, guys. Eventually “brand” in its meaning as a burning stick turned into a kenning for sword. So sword-foot, which is not any less sinister.

But… “Largo.” Not Brego or Drogo, or any of the other reasonable Hobbit names, or translations of Hobbit names. Nope. Largo.

Lango would make sense. But no.

Lar and laer do mean “learning” or “lore.” But that would usually not be how it worked; it would be a girl’s name, like Largundis. It could be a name like Hamico, maybe.

It could be a worn-down version of Lodowic or Leowic, ending up as Largo.

I just don’t like it, overall. It’s lazy again, the work of somebody who doesn’t understand name construction or its importance to worldbuilding.


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Super Cuteness Alert

Aldi has a seasonal item: Strawberry and Cream Rose Cones.

It’s strawberry and cream flavored ice cream, in a chocolate flavored sugar cone.. but the one tiny scoop of ice cream is molded into the shape of a pink rose. And it’s wrapped up in silver paper, the better to admire.

It’s really good ice cream, albeit a tiny serving and a tiny sugar cone. $3.99 for four cones.

If you have a tiny little girl who like princess-y things, this is about the perfect size. Or if you’re a guy who wants to make a small romantic gesture!

It is so girly, but it is perfect.

I bought them for myself, and I regret nothing. I just wish I’d had them for Queenship of Mary day.

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More Right than I Knew

I recently got in a discussion where I pointed out that the title “Theotokos” was very close to the Gospel address, “the mother of my LORD” (LORD = YHWH).

Apparently, the title “Theotokos” is actually referencing the other title directly, even though the wording uses synonyms instead of a direct quote.

(For my next trick, I shall reinvent the wheel.)

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Dino Diatribes

In a world of HoloLive animated avatars, AI bots, paid shills, and OnlyFans cam-girls, I bring you a guy with a brown/gray puppet on his hand who comments on modern culture.

“Dino Diatribes” is a video series brought to you by the Eat Midnight Cake podcast’s new YouTube channel, Our Midnight Cake. I am not familiar with this podcast, but obviously I need to be.

(Not for kids, but it seems reasonably worksafe if you’re ready for a guy getting loud during his comments.)

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Bag End and Bagshot Row

As Amazon’s Rings of Power show continues to release teasers that are more like taunts, showing off how proud they are to ignore Tolkien’s worldbuilding and lore, it’s a good time to re-read LoTR and The Hobbit.

So I was thinking about Bilbo and Frodo’s neighborhood. It turns out that Bag End was also the name of a real farm in Dormston, Worcestershire, England, which was owned for about ten years by Tolkien’s kindly and eccentric maternal aunt, Jane Neave. It was called Dormston Manor Farm when she got hold of it; but she researched and found it was originally called Bag End, and then refused to call it anything else. (Of course, this is also a horrible pun, being a direct translation of “cul d’sac.”)

Dormiston was originally Deormodsealdtune, Deormod’s town. “Deormod” means “bold-mood, bold-mind.” (And you can read Tolkien’s brief essay on ofermod to learn more about mod.)

Bagshot Row, where Sam and Gaffer Gamgee live, is based on a placename in Hampshire. Bagshot is near Aldershot. Aldershot comes from Alreshate, Alder-holt, and Bagshot comes from Bagsheta, Bacga’s holt. (A holt is an Old English word for woods, a thicket, a copse. There’s another old word with the same spelling that means an otter den, but it comes from a different Germanic root.)

Baggins is an actual English surname. It’s the patronymic form of names like Bagge, Bagg, and Bag, which also may come from the Old English given names Bacga, Baecga, Bagga, Baggi.

Baecga’s meaning is unknown. It might refer to some kind of wild animal, like a wild badger (theorized to be “bagga” as well as “brocc”); a wild pig (Old Dutch bagghe, a small pig); or a wild sheep (Scandinavian bagge, ram or wether).

Later on, there’s a Middle English word “bagger” which turned into Modern English “badget,” a hawker or peddler. This seems to be talking about actual bags full of goods.


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St. John Chrysostom on Women’s Status

Homily 26 on 1 Corinthians has a lot of interesting stuff in it.

Chrysostom points out that only the heretics say that women are inferior to men, or that the Son is lesser than the Father. He points out that even if St. Paul says that the man is the head of the woman, he also says that the Father is the head of Christ.

So if the Son is exactly the same in substance as the Father, and is naturally co-equal with the Father and one with the Father… it’s love and respect that makes the Son treat the Father as His ruler. The Son isn’t groveling. The Son isn’t in chains. (All this is me, not Chrysostom.)

And if that is true of the Son, then obviously the relationship of a woman to her husband should also not be one of groveling and chains. The Son sits at the Father’s right hand, enthroned.

Anyhoo, more after work.

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Interesting Scripture Variant in Irenaeus

In Against Heresies, Book I, Chapter VIII, St. Irenaeus quotes 1 Cor. 11:10 as “A woman ought to have a veil (“kalumma”) on her head, because of the angels.” (Instead of “have authority on her head”.)

So that’s kinda interesting, because Irenaeus was a native Greek-speaker from Asia Minor. And this basically equates a woman having authority with a woman wearing a veil.

OTOH, it is pretty obvious that the Latin-speaking Fathers like St. Augustine, and the ecclesiastical writers like Tertullian, see “having power on/over her head” meaning that a man is restraining a woman, or that the woman is restraining her own power by means of the veil. OTOH, it was more important for a married Roman woman to wear a stola in public, at all times, than it was for women in Asia Minor or other parts East to wear a light veil or hat when outside; so they would tend to lean a certain way.

I don’t want to disregard the way that this passage was traditionally interpreted, because clearly that’s part of holy tradition and the magisterium. But it seems to be saying various things to various people.

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Stephen Ratliff Is Still Writing!!

One of the best sports on the Internet. I am happy that he’s still around. His stories made me smile, back in the day.

Here’s his page on

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Medieval Bodice Lines

Shadiversity has an interesting non-work safe video on medieval sex. (It’s not racy… it’s just not a safe topic for your work computer. They speak frankly.) Generally a good video, although it seems to have some strange ideas about the practices of medieval Catholicism. Just because it’s in a reference book, that doesn’t mean somebody was asking every question. (Outside of things like general confessions for somebody’s entire lives… and even then!)

Anyway, reenactor/researcher Rosalie Gilbert points out that, during her 13th century period, one could show quite a lot of decolletage in dresses, even though hair and sleeves were covered.

Here’s the rule, straight from a queen:

“A decent woman doesn’t have a dress cut lower than her armpit.”

Depending on the positioning of one’s bust, that could be fairly low!

Of course, this was a time when the preferred young lady bosom was often compared to “apples,” and we’re not talking jumbo apples like we have today. So the low cut may have been a kindly gesture, as it was to the young English stick ladies in the Regency… but also it’s good for older ladies of more bosom to be able to…um… lead fashion. Yeah.

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Cold Persian Yogurt Soup

Also known as Aashe Doogh or Aashe Mast. Basically it’s a smoothie with stuff, in a bowl instead of a glass. (Or possibly you can think of it as chip dip turned into soup.)

The idea is “how to eat something nourishing when it’s freaking hot and you’ve got no appetite.”

2 cups plain yogurt.

1 1/2 cups ice water, or cold water.

Whatever other stuff you want. Walnuts and raisins. Cucumber and fresh dill. Chives. Mint. Fruit. Yesterday’s cooked rice. Whatever. You can add pepper and salt. You can add sugar instead. Whatever you like.

(If you’re not sure what will go over, have different bowls for sweet stuff and savory stuff. Or you could just put bowls of ingredients out on the table, and let people add it to their own soup.)

Put the stuff in the yogurt. (Or don’t yet, if you’re going with letting people pick their ingredients. Or make your family commit to their own choices ahead of time, and label their individual bowls of soup.)

Put the ice water in the yogurt. Whisk all that stuff together, or just stir it with a spoon.

Put it in the fridge for an hour. Pour it into soup bowls. Eat it.

And that’s it. You might want some bread or flatbread on the side.

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Not a Streaker

The man at the Padres game who ran across the field was wearing underwear.

You’re not a streaker unless you’re naked. This guy was just scantily clad.

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