Spelling = The

The Indiana State Museum currently has a Lord of the Rings movie exhibit (apparently the last stop on the exhibition’s US tour). This past Saturday Chuck, John (Freshman, not Cowboy), and I went down to see it. The trip also afforded us some time to visit elder Fool Josh.

The weather was cold but clear on the uneventful drive from Lafayette down to Indy. Our first stop was the LOTR exhibit at the museum. Fun fact: when they say admission is $7, that’s on top of the $7 general admission to the museum itself. Ouch.

Nevertheless, the exhibit was pretty neat. They had all sorts of props and costumes on display. The level of detail on everything is very impressive. On most movie props, they’re only good enough to fool the camera, but these look real even when you’re right on top of it, down to tiny inscriptions and wear and tear. The corpse of Boromir was also quite life-like. Now I know how communists must feel when looking at Lenin‘s body.

The exhibit also had demos of some of the technology used for the special effects, like motion capture and video compositing. If you felt like shelling out another $6 you could get your picture taken in a setup that makes one person look hobbit-sized next to someone else while they sit on a bench. There was also a sensor that, if you stood under it, it’d tell you what middle earth race your height is appropriate for. It identified me as human. Little does it know.

The only disappointing thing about the exhibit was that the copy of the One Ring they had on display wasn’t the one with the inscription on it. So it pretty much just looked like a standard gold band.

After we left the museum, we got to experience the fun and excitement that is Indianapolis’s attempt to put accurate signs on its roadways. You know you’re in for a treat when the only roadway leading out of the parking garage is clearly signed “Do Not Enter”. Um, yeah, that’s not true. Also, the city apparently decided to save money by putting the “go this way to get to the interstate” signs only on alternating intersections where you have to turn, so you get to do some guessing.

Indianapolis: who needs tourist traps when your roads trap tourists by themselves?

Despite the urban planners’ best efforts, however, we managed to find the highway, and from there we went to Josh’s apartment to hang out there for a while. After seeing the minibar he built and going out to eat lunch, we played Mario Kart: Double Dash for several hours. After trying out some of the different modes we settled on two-versus-two races where we’d try to dump as much junk on the track as possible. Josh and I discovered that if you play as Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong, you can easily bring forth the Bananapocalypse. You have to love watching the other team approach a landing and see the track covered in bananas. Also, delicious homemade cookies.

After a trip out to dinner we regaled John with tales of the olden days of the Ship of Fools as well as going on various Internet hijinks. In particular, after Josh learned of the existence of Digg (described as “like Slashdot, but for 13-year-olds and without moderation,” the horror), he decided to e-mail the operators of the site and inform them that the name Digg is misspelled. In the first attempt, Outlook, in its infinite wisdom, decided to make the “Send” button disappear. In the second try, Josh got as far as entering “Spelling = The” as the title before a brush against the touchpad caused the message to be sent. Thus greenrd’s Law was once again demonstrated.

Other Internet hijinks involved watching, among other things, the Holiday light display that’s been making the rounds (oh no, he said “holiday”!) and this music video for Maxwell’s Silver Hammer (which is downright inspired, and was that a nod to FLCL in the second verse?). Fun fact: the reviews sections on Newgrounds are home to the dumbest people on the Internet.

Eventually it got late enough that John and I said our goodbyes (Chuck and Cristine having already left, Cristine being involved in the “preparing for their upcoming wedding” subplot that isn’t mentioned in this post, aside from this parenthetical comment which is now complete) and started the trip back. Thanks to the freezing rain, the drive back to campus was much slower than the trip down, but fortunately was also uneventful.

One Response

  1. greenrd’s Law – the hubris of the grammarians

    I would be curious to see what my height corresponds to in Middle Earth.

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