A Special Bulletin from the Warriors-in-Hero-Training School of the Round Table, issued via carrier tern from the desk of renowned Headmaster Sir Galgadin.
It has come to my knowledge that many among the so-called “learned” in the modern world have a dangerous tendency to scoff at “legends” of fire-breathing beasts. To this, I have but one thing to say: “Never laugh at live dragons.”
J.R.R Tolkien To which of course they would reply, “But there is no such thing as live dragons.” After which, they would burst into another fit of mocking laughter … right before perishing in a fiery blast. I do not intend to attempt changing mainstream views on dragons in general. Short of shoving a few dozen world-acclaimed so-called scholars into the dragon’s den, I cannot think of any way to convince them that dragons do in fact exist and have a sweet tooth for barbeque. (I hear slow smoked scholar is considered quite the delicacy in dragondom.) Instead, I shall let the wise speak for me. Brilliant scholars have been writing about dragons for quite a bit longer than my pen has been scratching a page. Perhaps their words—and not mine—shall help awaken this sleeping world to the knowledge of the peril it lives in. After all … “ … it is one thing to read about dragons and another to meet them.”
Ursula K. Le Guin, A Wizard of Earthsea Among the many scoffers, there are also many who think dragons are the easily-befuddled, easily-slain creatures of bedtime lore. Nothing could be further from the truth. They are cunning, powerful, devious, masters of deceit and treachery, and for all the fire burning within their chests, they are utterly cold hearted. “A dragon should never be engaged in conversation as they are inveterate liars and tricksters, though if you’re actually talking to a dragon, you’re pretty much toast anyway.”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle Toast? Not sure that’s quite a strong enough a word for it. Think barbeque. Seared steak. Shishkabob. And dragons unfortunately aren’t the sort of things you can ignore either. If one moves in nearby, you can expect death and destruction to follow in its wake, as notable dragon-scholar J.R.R Tolkien noted in The Hobbit. “It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him.”
J.R.R. Tolkien So just what should one do if a dragon moves in nearby? There are many varying suggestions: Double check your life insurance policy … Head for a top secret bunker in the hills … Offer your livestock as sacrifices to appease the fiery beast … Or if all else fails, you can always send for a dragon slayer. This ad was discovered posted on craigslist. Any takers? In general, it is wise to remember that dragons are fearsome beasts … proud … arrogant … and with good reason. “My armor is like tenfold shields, my teeth are swords, my claws spears, the shock of my tail a thunderbolt, my wings a hurricane, and my breath death!”
“Smaug” J.R.R Tolkien, The Hobbit And yet even the fiercest dragons have a weak spot. “I have always understood,” said Bilbo in a frightened squeak, “that dragons were softer underneath, especially in the region of the—er—chest; but doubtless one so fortified has thought of that.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit Find the dragon’s weak spot and strike hard, my friend, lest you and your family be counted among the growing number of deaths attributed to dragon-related accidents every year. I should like to leave you with one final piece of dragonish wisdom. If at all possible … “Meddle not in the affairs of dragons for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.”
Anonymous Sir Galgadin
Signing off Do you have a favorite dragon-ish quote? Share it in the comments!