If you haven't heard already, Southern California has been on fire for the past week. At least around my locality, the air isn't as acrid as yesterday or the day before, so kudos to the firefighters and their heroism. However, all areas of California between (roughly) Santa Barbara and the Mexican Border aren't out of the woods yet.
This is a recently shot video from a YouTube user named Ramidogg. It's hauntingly beautiful and horrifying in the same breath. You'd think it was a CGI rendition of Hell, but it's a sad reality. There are actually more closer-than-comfortable videos from this YouTube user, so check them all out (you can use the "Menu" option on the widget) if you want to see some more:
Again, you have to give the brave firefighters the props they deserve. They are the real-life equivalent of Gandalf-like wizards fighting fire demons (Balrogs) and fire-breathing dragons. And you know what? They often go above and beyond that description.
With that sentiment in mind, check out this YouTube video of the entire Gandalf-Balrog battle from the first two installments of The Lord of the Rings:
Gothmog the Balrog illustration credit: Tttom.