A Walk to Rivendell & Dragon*Con Host Hotels…

340 Days until Dragon*Con 2012…

One week from today, there will be 333 days until Dragon*Con. Triple threes, three times the magic number. “The past and the present and the future, faith and hope and charity. The heart and the brain and the body, give you three… as a magic number.”

Somewhere in ancient mystic numerology, I’m hoping that this day means luck for me. Secondary to me, I hope it means luck for you too.

Why do we need luck? Why do we need to pin all our hopes on an ancient ideology that probably is the equivalent of putting a quarter into a Fred Flintstone Egg Drop machine? And why does Fred cluck while he’s picking out your prize?

bock bock bock... superball... bock bock

Because, Dragon*Con attendees, one week from tomorrow, October 3rd, is when the Dragon*Con Host Hotels open up their booking for the D*C 2012 dates (August 31 – September 3).
 
So why do we need luck next Sunday? Because next Sunday is the day that we must remember to set our alarm clocks to be on the phone Monday morning, bright and early. So even though Monday is the day to book your hotel, you really need the luck on Sunday evening. From what I understand, the flood gates open up on Monday, and even calling early in the morning may not guarantee you a room. Magic number, do your duty, hook us up with a room and booty!
 
 
 
 

A photo I yoinked from the internet of our *hopefully* hotel

 
My Dragon*Con travel companion and I are going to be attempting to get into the Marriott Marquis, solely out of some impalpable loyalty to Ray Bradbury, who apparently made the bold statement, “This hotel is science fiction!”
I mentioned before that we have only been to Dragon*Con once before. I have no shame in that. I just know there are some D*C vets out there who are rolling their eyes at me. Well, screw you.
 
Anyway, when we went in 2010 we stayed at one of the official “overflow” hotels. Specifically, the Airport Hilton. While a nice hotel, being so far from the action made it kind of a pain in the ass. They had a shuttle that ran from the hotel to the D*C “area”, which was fine in the mornings, but from what I remember, if you stayed at the Con very late, you had to get a taxi home… because the shuttles quit running at like 10pm or so. The last panels/events don’t even start until 11:30 or somewhere around there! A taxi ride from the Dragon*Con area, out to our hotel, was expensive. So that sucks.
 
There is no doubt in my mind that staying in a host hotel will up the ante on the Dragon*Con experience, and not just because we don’t have to get taxis to and from our hotel. A host hotel also has “Dragon*Con tv”!!! DCTV is a closed-circuit, 24-hour television programme broadcast only to teevees inside the host hotels. On this channel, you get exclusive programming like event announcements (panel such-n-such has moved to room so-n-so), comedic routines by everyone’s favorite janitors (hand puppets who are almost like the mascots of D*C), and best of all, broadcasting of the “big panels”. So if you stood in line for that Star Trek: the Next Generation panel, but didn’t get in, you can go upstairs and watch it on the death box.
 
To recap: set your alarms a week from tonight so you can wake up and start calling whatever hotel you want to get into.
 
 

another pilfered pic from the internet

 
 
A Walk to Rivendell…
 
I know many of you know this already, but I post to the message boards over at theonering.net. Recently, I became aware of a fitness challenge for Tolkien fans known as the “Walk to Rivendell Challenge”.
 
At some point, someone somewhere took a ton of time and figured out how many miles walk it was from the Shire to Rivendell. How they did this is a mystery, I am assuming witchcraft and/or divination.
 
The “Walk to Rivendell” challenge is to walk this same distance over the course of a year. There are milestones along the way (Weathertop, Bree, etc.) so you post, either here or wherever else you want to join up, about where you are, and drink a tasty beverage in celebration.
To be honest, I am not doing the Walk to Rivendell challenge, mostly because I started this blog for, basically, the same reason the Challenge exists: accountability.
 
But, I did want to share it with all of you because I thought it was a cool way to be “nerdy” and get fit at the same time. You hafta admit, there’s not much that is nerdier than figuring out the math to compute how far it is between two points in a world that doesn’t even exist anywhere other than in books.
 
I’m going to copy/paste the initial post in the thread over at theonering.net. Also, before I do that, here’s some links so you can get involved if you want to.
 
CLICK HERE to take the “From fitfordragoncon.com to original thread” challenge.
 
CLICK HERE to take the “From fitfordragoncon.com to the Eowyn Challenge” challenge. The Eowyn Challenge is the original website dedicated to the Walk to Rivendell Challenge and other Tolkien-related fitness challenges also.
 
Without further ado, here is my copypasta from the thread over at TORn, as originally posted by member Arandiel:
 
The There and Back Again Challenge
TORnFolks, our mission is simple: get 13 rowdy Dwarves, one grumpy Wizard and a beleaguered Hobbit all 967 miles from Bag End to the Lonely Mountain in time for the premiere of The Hobbit: There and Back Again (the second Hobbit movie) on December 13, 2013.

How, you ask? Our Challenge is in three parts, a Group Challenge and two Individual Challenges. You can choose to participate in just the Group Challenge or add an Individual Challenge if you want to.

1. There and Back Again Group Challenge
Bilbo, the Dwarves and Gandalf traveled approximately 13,900* cumulative miles from Bag End to the Lonely Mountain. For us to get them there, we’ll need to log a group average of about 120* miles per week to reach their destination by December 2013.

Last week, we logged a group total of 63 miles. How are we going to double that figure? By increasing our own level of activity, including more of the types of activity we’re already doing, and inviting more TORn Folks to join us on the journey!

2. Unexpected Journey Individual Challenge
So you want to set yourself a goal as well as helping the group? How about following Bilbo’s 967-mile journey from Bag End to the Lonely Mountain! By logging an average of 8.5 miles per week,** you’ll get there by the second movie premiere in December 2013.

3. There and Back Again Individual Challenge
Want something more ambitious? Travel the 1934-mile Bag End-Lonely Mountain-Bag End round trip with Bilbo by logging an average of 17 miles per week!***

A Few Tips

  • Use the conversion charts that grammaboodawg is posting in this thread to convert other types of activity into walking-equivalent miles (thanks, gramma!).
  • Never underestimate the value of stretching, moderate strength-building, healthy snacks and sleep.
  • This is a journey, not a race; pace yourself, especially at first, to avoid injury and/or burnout. And make sure your health care provider is okay with your level of activity.
  • Most important, this is fun! We’ll get much farther when we celebrate the milestones, encourage each other, and throw the occasional party!

Logging Progress
To make things easier on the Group Challenge mileage tracker (me!), please include the following format when you log your weekly progress:

Miles covered this week:
Cumulative miles:

Due to, well, life and such, I can’t keep track of the miles anyone logs for part 2 or part 3 of the Challenge (except myself!); please keep your own records, and let us all know how you’re doing! Part 2 and Part 3 participants – we’ll log the miles you report for the Group Challenge, as well.

Group Challenge Progress
Miles covered last week: 63
Cumulative miles:
63

Bilbo has just arrived, huffing and puffing, at the Green Dragon, where the Dwarves are saddled up and ready to go. Gandalf will shortly catch up to them on the road, bringing Bilbo’s pipe and pocket handkerchiefs.

As for me, I’m leisurely making my way toward Frogmorton this week. Bill the Treadmill was rather lonely, as I’ve been unexpectedly busy since last Thursday, but next week will be better!

Arandiel

Miles covered this week: 4
Cumulative miles: 16
Goal: There and Back Again!

The Scoop on the Walk
The TORn Walk to Rivendell thread meets right here on Main, on Thursdays.
Learn about the Walk to Rivendell/
Éowyn Challenge: http://www.eowynchallenge.net
Login Page to register miles: http://careydigitalstudio.com/…esdatabase/login.php

Please update your mileage via the login page, and be sure to keep a backup record of your miles, in case Warg attack, Wizard-induced blizzard, or other fell calamity causes the Shields page to crash. And see you in Rivendell, or wherever your journey takes you in Middle-Earth!

The Éowyn Challenge/Walk to Rivendell (and beyond) is a Middle-Earth-related fitness walk that began in March 2003, and has been going on with walkers around the world ever since. TORn’s Walk is open to all people and healthy types of activity. Please visit the Éowyn Challenge site, especially the main page and the Walk page, for more information. Useful links, including mileage charts compiled by the late Karen Wynn Fonstad, are on the Tools page.

*Bilbo traveled roughly 967 miles from Bag End to the Lonely Mountain. 967 mi x 15 people = 14,505 miles; however, the Dwarves traveled somewhat less than 967 miles, according to the Eowyn Challenge site – they didn’t visit Gollum or make all the errand-runs around the Lonely Mountain, for example – and Gandalf’s wanderings in The Hobbit are hard to track for a layperson like myself. So, after applying a mathematical technique I like to call “I think I’m somewhere in the ballpark, and I’ve even included most of the miles they took by Eagle, even though that feels like cheating,” I arrived at about 13,900 cumulative miles, which, divided by 116 weeks, averages out to just under 120 miles per week.
**Technically, it’s 8.34 plus a bit; I rounded up to make it easier to track and give folks a little bit of wiggle room!
***Technically, it’s 16.67 plus a bit; see above!

 
 
 
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