Quote Originally Posted by Ashtagon View Post
Consider that we as modern humans are "being teenagers" right through to age 21 as often as not these days. Our medieval counterparts left that stage at age 15. We could just as easily ask what we are doing now with those six years. That's what the elves are doing, only more so.
For the most part, full-time education. From 15, you have your last year of school, one or two years of college/sixth form, and three to seven years of uni ahead of you.

By the time you finish that, you should have learned to cook, if nothing else (the students who try to subsist on peanut butter, chocolate spread, and pot noodles are generally the ones who are only semi-catered and aren't allowed cooking equipment in their rooms).

Eh. I have a physique that's pretty similar to an elf's (albeit on the top end of their range). I look pretty scrawny, especially compared to most of the guys I work with. When we do combatives, I throw around guys who outweigh me by a good fifty pounds with brute force alone (God knows it ain't technique). Bulk and strength don't necessarily equate. This reflects in the elf's distinct lack of a Strength penalty. I have to work harder for endurance than I do for burst strength, and I'm easier to break than a bigger Joe is - which is in line with the Constitution penalty. I'm a clumsy stumbleduck, though, so at least there's that break. Thus, it seems rather fishy for you to be saying that because elves are skinny, they can't use a longbow.
There's more to strength than raw muscle mass, sure -- muscle density does play a part. But there's a limit to how far you can get on density alone.

Note that the D&D rules effectively forbid humans from using longbows effectively as well (a human can't attain the requisite strength score on the average array, and I'm not convinced it's even possible using the elite array) -- it's not just an elf thing.