Mood: party time!
Topic: "Avast You Lubbers"(6)
In those early years, it was Frodo and Legolas, representing the urban, and Smeagol and Denethor spawned from the open spaces to the West. On this particular Fourth of July, Legolas was ensconced in the pubescent hormonal rapture, and had no interest in separating himself from his partner of the moment. The Hobbit entourage was then but three, conjuring magical plans to disperse their unfulfilled energies, and soon Frodo found himself outnumbered by his chums. The two-to-one vote was to observe the Fourth of July Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial, the most magnificent fireworks display in all the lands of Middle Earth, but something that Frodo had seen several times before. Frodo kept cajoling his associates that there was beer to drink, and that time was wasting.
Denethor was from Utah, and he knew much of wild rivers and frantic runs between huge boulders, things which Frodo enjoyed hearing about but had never imagined as reality. Frodo was aghast when Smeagol suggested the use of Denethor's canoe as a transit object into the middle of the wide Potomac, a peaceful spot to watch the fireworks undisturbed by those lacking imagination. Besides, said Smeagol, a case of beer would be a welcome addition, and would automatically placate Frodo. Frodo argued with futility that he had no experience in a canoe, and might get them all sent to Davy Jones Locker, or at least knock the beer overboard.
His comrades finally convinced him that their superior skills would offset the flaws in Frodo's participation. "Besides," said Denethor, "you'll get in the middle, and there is no way you could tip us over."
Frodo saw the flaw in the plan when they pulled up next to the Columbia Island Marina in order to launch the canoe. It seemed that every owner of a yacht, or whatever one might call something large and white with motors aroar, that floated upon the river that night was placed directly in the path of Frodo and his companions. As the canoe slid into the water, with Frodo as passenger, while Denethor and Smeagol provided the intial thrust on behalf of the engineless vehicle, Frodo noted the wake from every passing ocean liner. Frodo kept his hands upon the bug spray, the jackets, and the beer, while his friends leaped into the canoe.
Things were going amazingly well until Smeagol attempted to cast himself into the pilot's position in front of Frodo, and Frodo's slight lean of assistance to the left turned out to be a miscalculation, at best. In the subsequent attempt to assist Smeagol back into the canoe, Frodo again adjusted position without informing the remaining crew. Now Frodo was all alone, with no paddle.
It should come as no surprise that neither Smeagol nor Denethor ever again invited Frodo when they went canoeing. They were not amused at Frodo's effort to put things into true perspective when he noted that "at least he'd saved the beer."
As is his usual practice this Fouth of July, Frodo will grudgingly watch an inferior fireworks display while he recalls the majesty of the lights above the Washington Monument. He will smile, and think of friends, long gone, who still curse the clumsy Hobbit for their unwanted dunking. He knows they still laugh about him, but you know what?
At least he saved the beer.