Damon_Tor

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About Damon_Tor

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  1. Is Val Important

    The problem is when people say theory and mean "peer reviewed and tested and backed up by hard data and academic concurrences" and people hear it and think "some idea some guy has". It's not of any consequence whether people hear about the "Varys is a merman theory" and know nobody is talking about anything with any validity, but when people hear something like "climate change theory" and assume that because a theory is just an idea (because the word has been so thoroughly misused) that there's no cause for any alarm. They respond with "well it's just a theory" forgetting that "theory" is basically the highest level of scientific knowledge available to us. That's an example. I'm not taking a side on climate change nor do I want this to become a discussion about climate change. By propagating the misuse of that word, you are contributing to a serious deficit in our ability to have intelligent discussion about science, which has a real impact on policy that matters.
  2. Is Val Important

    Words matter. That word matters more than most.
  3. Is Val Important

    I didn't watch it. It's simply a pet peeve of mine people calling a random idea they have a "theory" without knowing the meaning of the word. The proper word is "hypothesis". Whether the video has a valid point or not is immaterial. Almost no speculation about the books can be considered a theory because none of it is falsifiable. You can have a hypothesis that is very well supported by data and a hypothesis that is wild speculation, but they don't become theories without testing and academic consensus. And to be clear, even things widely believed and largely uncontroversial like R+L=J still do not qualify as theories because testing isn't possible.
  4. Baratheon name origin

    No more than the Andals were fluent in English. We know from interviews that GRRM has little interest in languages. He probably did some googling for words that meant "barrier to the gods" in other languages and went with one that looked cool.
  5. Is Val Important

    A hypothesis which has been tested, and after sufficient academic rigor, is called a theory. The line is blurry, but it does require research, testing, and consensus. It is a hypothesis, not a theory, until that point. "Theories" are probably what you think of as "fact". Gravity is a theory, for example, because its been well tested and there isn't much academic dissent over how it works.
  6. Is Val Important

    I generally assume she only exists to allow for Gilly's baby swap story, which I believe is extremely important. She doesn't seem to have any other role to play.
  7. Baratheon name origin

    Breaking it down into Greek "Baratheon" would mean "Barrier of/to/against the Gods" which makes perfect sense in connection to Storm's End and its legend. I assume the name was chosen specifically to please his new constituents.
  8. Harry & Sansa (Littlefinger is delusional)

    I believe that Littlefinger actually, legitimately, wants Sansa to be Queen. But I think it's because Littlefinger understands much more about the magical plots at work, and he knows Sansa's Hoare blood holds the key to Harrenhall. Magical abilities appear to be enhanced by rule. The more people believe you have power, the more power, magical power, you actually have. Littlefinger seems to be gathering as much of the kingdoms as possible under Sansa: all together, the North, the Rivers, and the Vale are more territory than House Hoare ever commanded, so maybe it's enough to make Harrenhall do... well, whatever it is it's supposed to do.
  9. "Shipping" in general confuses me in the context of ASOIAF. What on earth would make you think GRRM even believes in love? Go read Meathouse Man and get back to me.
  10. The curious love stories of Lannister men.

    I'm not sure how "these men were in love with their wives" qualifies as "curious". It certainly furrows some brows. She was also able to pop out a bunch of kids for him, where she wasn't able to produce living children for any of her other husbands.
  11. Gendry and the forging of a new lightbringer

    Perhaps relevant to this topic: If Gendry's parentage were known and acknowledged (perhaps via some paperwork Ned had Robert sign on the sly, as is sometimes suggested) his surname would be "Waters". That said, I'm skeptical about Lightbringer as a literal sword. I generally prefer the idea that Lightbringer is (for some reason) Jaime Lannister himself. The three forgings of Lightbringer are the three sacrifices he needs to make, three things he needs to let go of: his children (again, their proper surname would also be "Waters") his identity as a Lannister and his love for his sister. This ties nicely with the linguistic clue: But then again, I have no idea what that even means. It's fully in keeping with GRRM's themes though.
  12. Dany, blood of the Dragom?

    Because that's not how genes work. Creating a child isn't like mixing two colors of paint together, you get certain genes or you don't. She's blonde because she has two copies of the blonde gene (or more correctly, lacks a gene for any other hair color). She has purple eyes because she has a gene for purple eyes (this seems to be dominant, unlike the hair color). And she can bond with dragons because she has that gene too. It's worth noting for the record that the Daynes, for reasons that are still unexplained, have the same hair and eye phenotypes as the Valyrians. And the Martells have intermarried with both Targaryens and Daynes as well, so there's no mystery about anyone having a "Valyrian" appearance. We don't understand how bonding with dragons works, but the fact that the last time a Blackwood produced children with a Targaryen the result was an extremely powerful psychic it's a good bet that Betha's contribution to the Targaryen genome didn't hurt their chances. In fact, here genes may be exactly what allows dragon bonding in the first place. For the sake of argument, let's say that the Blackwood psychic genes are recessive: you need "PP" to have the trait. And let's say that the Targaryen dragon-brain genes are recessive: you need "DD". If you need both traits to be "Mother of Dragons" (whatever that really means) then they basically just had to keep rolling the dice after the addition of the Blackwood genes. Aegon V's kids would have all been DdPp. Then once they started mating brother to sister you would start getting more novel mixes: the odds of getting DDPP are something like 1/20. But who the hell knows.
  13. I don't want the big hardcover

    At this point I would buy it even if it were engraved on stone tablets. Who am I kidding, I would buy it ESPECIALLY if it were engraved on stone tablets, that would be boss.
  14. Language in the Seven Kingdoms

    Even just having an example of someone speaking Andlish "correctly", especially if that person is regarded as an intellectual authority, is going to have a homogenizing effect on language. And I'm not sure you're correct: if a maester arrived at a castle and found that the children were speaking the language poorly it seems likely they would step in to correct them. I grew up in a part of the United States were the words "Ain't" and "Ya'll" are acceptable. I had a teacher in grade school who was from another part of the United States, and went on a crusade against the use of those words. Of course language is entirely subjective: there's nothing wrong with "Ain't" (After all, the "correct" word would be "Aren't" as in "Aren't I fancy" but Aren't is a contraction of "Are not" and you wouldn't say "Are I not Fancy" you'd say "Am I not fancy". "Ain't" is a degradation of "Amn't" which is short for "Am I not" so by some measure "Ain't" is actually more correct. "Ya'll" is just a contracted form of "You all") but because our teacher, an authority on the topic took a position on it, it reduced our use of the word. Now imagine that EVERY teacher went to school at the same university, and EVERY teacher had that same opinion on the words Ain't and Ya'll. It's easy to imagine that those words would begin to die out If some minor Northern house found themselves uplifted and given a major castle and a maester, what do you think the maester would do upon hearing the broken barely-intelligible Common they spoke? I would expect that Andlish lessons would become a part of the curriculum. In the early days of Andalization it certainly would have been.
  15. Language in the Seven Kingdoms

    I think we have the Citadel to thank for this. Every castle of any importance employs a man taught at the Citadel, and that man is usually responsible for teaching the children of the Lord of that castle. That kind of monopoly is going to have a powerful effect on culture.