So after I wrote the post yesterday about resolutions inspired by Tolkien creations, I received a few comments and texts from friends asking me about some of their favorites I had forgotten to mention. When I looked closer at the list of suggested characters I noticed a common theme throughout -- they were all bad guys. How could this oversight have happened? Have I become one of those people who only considers the feelings and issues of the protagonist? I was an English major in college, so I've spent about one thousand hours too many discussing the meaning behind characters in novels. I should know better than to cast aside the motives behind and the lessons learned from an antihero. In honor of that sentiment, here I seek out possible resolutions for the new year garnered from the stories of Tolkien villains.
Gollum/Smeagol is both a representation of good and evil and the downfall of human (or hobbit) existence to obsession. He is a cautionary tale for those struggling with addiction or even simply, unhealthy priorities. So the next time you go to pick up that extra drink or you think it's probably fine to trip on acid while working your shift at IHOP, just know that you could end up anorexic, bald and living in a cave.
Maybe this year you can kick those nasty habits by getting into an argument with yourself in a mirror or reflecting pool. Sometimes the most effective person to whip you into shape is your delusional, opposing, secondary personality; just be sure to have said fight when others aren't around. A change in diet could be helpful as well. Switching to fresh foods like raw, wriggling live fish and small game can take off a lot of unwanted pounds and free up the time you would have spent cooking for a support group or private moaning session in your cave. Take the time to find the things most precious to you, but don't be creepy and intense about it.
Saruman, the white wizard of Isengard gets caught up with the wrong crowd, but haven't we all for a time? When I was in high school I spent my freshman year loitering at Store 24, wearing JNCO jeans (unforgivable I know) and listening to Linkin Park so I could fit in. Is it any different to create a new mega race of killing machines, tear down a forest and try to exterminate a whole city? I think not.
Have some understanding here; if you meet a guy who had been down on his luck and he tells you he had this awesome jewelry that was stolen, wouldn't the humanitarian in you want to help a brother out?
Alright, so maybe he didn't mention right away that he wanted to rule the world with said ring and maybe to make that dream happen a few races had to be taken out in their entirety... or maybe that ring belonged to his grandma and it simply had sentimental value. Sometimes it's nice to help out a new buddy but, fitting in with the cool kids shouldn't dictate our choices to the point where we are wearing ugly oversized denim without looking at the repercussions (again, I know it was an unforgivable fashion choice and it is a shame I will take to my end).
Shelob is an inspiration for all women. She has her own place and she was hanging in the hip neighborhood for evil long before Sauron and the orcs came along. Isn't that always the way? You find a great area and then a new crowd moves in and clutters up your favorite dive bars and breakfast spots. Shelob still wasn't hindered, she just decides to eat in more often -- a common but often abandoned resolution. This not only saves money but it is also a healthier choice when it comes to calories. She seems to be doing just fine without a steady man and she has Gollum bringing her snacks, smart gal. In 2013 us ladies could all take a page from her book and try to depend a little less on men for affection and instead start using them for the free meals. Don't worry, when Mr. Right comes along you can ensnare him, but what's the rush?
Sauron is the top tier of evil in this tale, so I would be remiss to miss him. The best thing you can learn from him is to fight for what is yours. He made that ring himself, it doesn't get much clearer then that in an argument. He is going about getting it back all wrong though. I agree with the cliche, "if you love something let it go", so it seems like overkill to spend your time acting as a surveillance system just always watching everything, "Is that my ring?! Nope, check over there. Is that my ring?! Nope. What about that way... is THAT my ring?!" Good hairy hobbits foot, get a hobby! Maybe make a new ring or even a bracelet this time. If you don't think you can ever replace it, take up word searches or bird watching, with an eye that big I would think that would be a good fit. Be appreciative of what you have: an orc army, your own active volcano decor, a magical white haired new friend who seems whipped enough to do just about anything for you and nine functioning fingers. There are many who have a lot less to be thankful so calm down and stop getting all frantic and stalker-ish. Plan for a brighter 2013... maybe club polo nights with the Warg Riders and have the Nazgul bring sangria.