Reading, Short And Deep #398
Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss Cat Killers by Donald E. Westlake
Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.
Cat Killer was published in Shock—The Magazine of Terrifying Tales, September 1960
Jesse, Paul Weimer, and Cora Buhlert talk about The Venom Business by Michael Crichton.
Talked about on today’s show:
John Lange, the worst Michael Crichton novel, the worst of the Lange books, the number one problem, it is too long, badly padded, random sex scenes, compared to Easy Go, no sex in Binary, it’s annoying, the characters are horrible assholes you don’t want to be around, thinking of the money, who are we supposed to sympathize with?, our hero, nobody is likeable, very ambitious, a big book, fast and simple and cool and delightful, a murder mystery where you’re waiting for the murder to happen, when are they going to kill this fucker?, shortly before the end, starts awesome, terrific, Mexico stuff, Edgar Wallace, Indiana Jones, Walter Matthau, German actors, weird sharp turn, as soon as he’s off the plane and releasing the snakes, goes to the party, Richard Pierce shows up, one of the worst characters, full of resentment, hoping he was going to die, they waited to the end, an Agatha Christie before the detective comes in, the plot is gonna get cookin’, where’d this black guy come from?, the cats shit, a snakehandler, a smuggler, Richard not Rupert, The Prisoner Of Zenda, a layabout, Channel Tunnel, 1964, typical UK move, Paul’s high-school teacher, never, England shouldn’t be part of Europe, a weird way, this whole Brexit thing, laughing, the terrible teachers live forever, a math teacher in her 80s, a lady in her 70s, teaching in the 1930s, fast track program in the 1930s, died of shock, bullied her poor daughter, the lead character in Easy Go was named Pierce, Binary is such a clean book, Barnaby is our equivalent of Black here, rich elderly guy introduced later, he likes the name, his first name is Dick Pierce, hence all the sex, this is horrible, a lusting machine that’s abusive, why did he make him so horrible, rooting for his death, Gunter Sachs, Brigitte Bardot, sex dispensing machines, Michael Crichton knew somebody like this, doctors in this book, a little bit of psychology, a psychiatrist, a surgeon, more human venom than snake venom, later chapters, backstory, adopted father, a lot of contradictions, the terrible wife, he’s relating real experiences, hanging out with rich people with trust funds, Charles Renault, our main character, multiple names, failed out of Yale, the army, awesome hero character, also flawed, psychology all over the page, Easy Go, the journalist and the archaeologist, the incidents that happen, it fucks you up, the relationship between power and money, make people do what they want, adopts a friend’s son, adopted father, lampshade, his father, adoptd when he was 6, parents died in WWII, two or three years between, wouldn’t give him a child, resentment there, genetic competition, weird psychology, everybody is trying to fuck each other over, a horrible book because all the characters are horrible, away from the main character for much of the book, trying to write a big book explaining to himself, we keep shifting to other people’s points of view, visited by the step-mother, a dream-sequence, way too ambitious, his version of Moby-Dick, it fails, almost 12 hours, three times longer, the plotting was bad, his ambition was too much, somewhat more redeemable, Charles pistol whips a lady, double cross, he could have tied her up, violence, trying to kill people in cars, hung out with people like this, school friend, something that really happened to him, who is he other than Charles, a sequence where Charles goes to a party, one of them is a medical student, sticking himself into his own book, I can make this a novel plot too, studied in Harvard, Cambridge in the mid-60s, expensive cars, whores, drugs, so good to start, it settles into a horrible vest of vipers, spitting venom all over each other, that’s why I don’t hang out with those people anymore, Valley Of The Dolls by Jacqueline Susann, glitzy, those books, at hour 11 and a half, that was last week, last week?, it feels like five years in this hellhole, every couple of days he renegotiates his contract, no-fun, the book he started writing, how great this book started, the first hardcover John Lange, Drug Of Choice leans into the cats stuff, removing part of the brain, drugs to control people’s behavior, a Philip K. Dicky book, I’m interested in interesting things, fucking, alcohol and lording it over other people with their fancy new Maserati, sex is nice, interest in science, history, archaeology, cat surgery, rich people being terrible is sadly popular, Succession, Dynasty and Dallas, cars and clothes and fancy cars, fancy furniture, swinging sixties, over-descriptions, critical reviews from the period, overlong, encumbered, grubby collection of opportunists, too many subplots, too many dames, too many men and women, annoyed by interchangeable women, Dominique, Vivien, unimportant disgusting behavior, chasing after sex, we didn’t need that, he gets it every time, cruelty towards his Italian fiance, chaste until marriage, being there with those people, snake pit, stock deal, not completely terrible people, covered in venom, sacrificial virgins thrown into a snake pit, a horror, the author at the part is John Lange, bombastic literary figure, Truman Capote, conned into running these parties, a literary figure, this is the worst Crichton book Jesse has read, later period ones, Airframe, Disclosure, Prey, State Of Fear, Congo, intelligent apes in Africa, Rising Sun, Japan’s going to take over the world, Jurassic Park, which book is which, The Great Train Robbery, The Andromeda Strain, ossified, the script for Westworld (1973), Reading, Short And Deep, Alfred Bester, tuckerized, The Unseen Blushers, a poem by Thomas Gray, unknown Shakespeares, writers group, no editors allowed, an idea for a story, the new Shakespeare is a pulp, who would this Shakespeare be from this period of time, documents go missing, pulp science fiction writers, better or worse or equivalent of his period, he was not for rich people only, writing old tropes, Isaac Asimov, fart jokes for rich people and high brown literature for poor people, sea stories, he mumbled, a tropical disease in the Navy, throat cancer, he uses his friends to tell a meta-science fictional science fiction story, Bester is a superstar, Astonishing Stories, his power is amazing, stories that sparkle all over the page, make bad old ideas good new ideas, snip out that beginning of the book, it turns into a nest of horrible, after the party everything turns to shit, rich guy dilettante, he’s horrible in this book, from life!, Pickman’s Model by H.P. Lovecraft, horrible yucky, please tell me more about the gas chambers, soaking in the venom, Holocaust kid’s novels, endless terrible scenes, commit suicide, terrible, survivors accounts, historical value, as a catharsis, these things happened, sounds horrible, bestsellers, is this titillation?, go at it for the sex, Harold Robbins, rich people being terrible, we should wash our hands of this, Zero Cool, back on the horse with a good one, Odds On, critical path analysis, a lady kissing a man holding jewelry, Scratch One, A Case Of Need, the ebook, paper is preferable, even shorter, an American doctor goes to Spain, a conspiracy to obtain a jewel, not horrible sounding, arms shipment, a quote from Benjamin Disraeli, the horrible taste of this book, April, the writing vs. the plotting, a biography of Bester’s writing, seeing Alfred Bester interviewed [FANAC], you mean counterplot?, what went wrong here, three counterplots, as soon as he gets to Paris, the girl with the gun, the setup, a minor minor part of the many counterplots, Jane Goodall, Jane Mitchell, the Congo book, only gold up to this point, too venomy, pissed off, snake business, snakes as a subject, poison vs. venom, arsenic, hours of terrible pain and stomach cramps, building up a tolerance, a myth, Crichton knows, Black knows, he’s lying, idiotic nephew, sedatives or something, the poison of choice for murderers in the 1960s, sleeping pills, e605 [parathion], how did Jane get her gun from Mexico to Paris, he’s a smuggler with his own plane, they don’t search you bags, metal detectors in the 1970s, hijackings, airplane bomb, upping security, 1955 airplane bombing [United Air Lines Flight 629], this guy really hated his mother, macabre grindcore, Sinister Slaughter, 1949, Canadian Pacific Airlines 108 bombing, Albert Guay, tree stumps, timing pencils, acid eating through, glowsticks, advanced chemistry class, and then they had a rave, 1944 plot, Claus von Stauffenberg, Harry Turtledove, the world is terrible, WWII could have turned out, two evil powers, venerated in Germany, glowsticks go bad in 1-4 years, Re-Animator (1985), drug experiments done by the government, fucking around with brains, especially when the government does it, did not meet expectations, if he’d written the book he started to write, editor: give me a bunch of unlikeable monsters and make it long please, also dream sequence, baby born in an abbey, fast forward 30 years, people being horrible mode, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Basil Fawlty, trans-Atlantic tripe, everything we would hate to be in ourselves, a snob, hilarious, we didn’t need any of them, wipe them all out start again, Peyton Place by Grace Metalious, 10 Robbins books after he died, Tom Clancy, V.C. Andrews, Tycoon, Sidney Sheldon, mysteries, thrillery, furious at it, hugely popular, miniseries on TV, why do you have that thing?, you never even question it, wallpaper, why did you read John Lange?, looking at people’s bookshelves, judging Paul for his bookshelf, jettisoned ARCs, can’t hold everything, showing off or showing shelves, Jesse is judging them, this person is wise, this person is trash, organized by colour, youtubers, 2 books in the whole house: sad story, booktubers, not showing off enough, greenscreen fake bookshelf, how to make everything look really great behind them, fake blurred background wallpaper, organize your wall, judge your bookshelf, faux leather embossed hardcovers, videotape cases, leatherbound hardcovers, Subterranean Press, luxury books, a signal, drill down on this, a symbol of a rich person, the x the y or the z, a decanter, a tub of ice nearby, no decanters at the liquor store, rich people would go to the vineyard, buy a giant cask of amontillado, pour the liquor into the decanter from the bottle, its the legacy of the leftover of hundreds of years, which makes more sense?, why do we do the second one?, trying to cosplay being rich, the accoutrements of being rich, Mercedes is a car for taxis in Europe, the unconscious mimicking of rich people’s behavior is super-pathetic, measuring the books by the foot, Folio Society books, Centipede edition, not knowingly, more money than brains, secretly refilling from a whiskey bottle, cheap brandy in a pricey bottle, a basement full, a box with bottle openers, old liquor in the basement, Dundee cake, underground tunnels, Cora’s bakery, flower shops and gas stations, everything’s open everyday of the week, open shopping Sundays, an excuse, better in what sense?, LEGO art, action figure photos with Christmas lights, fake votive candles, lasers and glowsticks, can I have one, ubiquitous, dry ice is supercool, dry ice fog, makes for nice pictures, panicky about carbon dioxide, magnesium ribbon, potassium nitrate, blow up a model of the school, match heads, wax mixed with blackpowder, Chaos Day, Cora blew up her school once (and a volleyball net), two teenage girls, bad books happen occasionally, no indication, started off great, which book are you talking about, tall people die young, he would be 80 now, died at 66, this one was terrible, five or so, the first bad one, Grave Descend, Pirate Latitudes, Jurassic Park, Disclosure, State Of Fear, a lot to discuss it, climate change, carbon dioxide bad, terrible people, big evil oil companies, financed by the oil companies, the other end, a very complex system, we only have the one example, much warmer and much colder, climate observations from the 19th century, he’s interested in history and he likes the Caribbean, plenty more to read.
The SFFaudio Podcast #729 – The Adventures Of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain – read by John Greenman for Librivox. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the novel (6 hours 42 minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants include Jesse, Paul Weimer, and Trish E. Matson.
Talked about on today’s show:
1876, conflating some with Huckleberry Finn, the whitewashing of the fence, the whole business with the caves, the pirate incident, pretending to be dead, the business with the graves, Injun Joe, why people thought they were dead, play pirate, engaged, bosom friend Joe, what’s with his cousin, Sid, half-brother, Aunt Polly, single parent families, Judge Thatcher’s wife, Huck’s dad, gone, because the civil war, pre-civil war, set in the 1840s, disease?, pirates?, re-written as a science fiction book, there’s no outside communication with big cities, time placement with technology, lucifer matches, middle ages tech, St. Petersburg, Missouri, newfangled, no slavery we can see, the absence of industry, so kid oriented, so kid focused, a traditional plotted book, a bildungsroman, a picaresque, Twain’s first novel, incidents, a memory of growing up in this place at that time, not plot driven, Hannibal, Missouri, a made up town, the Illinois shore, going downriver to Illinois, he’s not making a mistake, we are making some misunderstanding, I had eleven toes, the bottom right hand corner, a fictionalization of his geography, an island, a sandbar, detailed fantasy map, how the cave system works, karst topography, mid-19th century American stuff, Ballou’s Dollar Monthly, right after Poe and before Twain, Atlantic Monthly, contemporary fiction magazine, a bent towards the fun, An Adventure Under Ground by W.D. Harrington, blooming for the grave, a story about a treasure in a cave, afeared, no companion Huck Finn, a body that has been covered in limestone, almost Lovecraftian cosmicism, stalactite dripping, a robber completely covered in limestone, turned into a statue, externally fossilized, locked inside of a tomb of limestone, a waterfall, the treasure was the escape, The Beast In The Cave by H.P. Lovecraft, Becky Thatcher, turned into a troglodyte, a C.H.U.D.?, a ghoul, The “Minions Of The Moon” by George L. Aiken, highborn noblemen rapists, pirates vs. robbers, the red handed, why he has to keep going to church, foster mom, you have to be a nobleman to be a robber, ancient tropes from the penny dreadfuls, Robin Hood, a Saxon nobleman, a lowborn local hero, pirates raid the triangle trade, pirates of the Caribbean, ex-slaves, Our Flag Means Death, unrealistic fantasy elements, Stede Bonnet, the romanticism of piracy, be and do that, all the fantasies that Tom and Huck have, what we remember vs. the majority of the book, fantasies interrupted by real events, keeping the guns in the cave, haunted house, adult versions of Tom and Huck are evil, actual robbers, murderers, low class people, absolute pronouncements, he’s read the books, overhearing adults, getting engaged, what’s consistently proven, blood oaths, children always report on each other, Huck’s rich!, when the beans are spilled, when Sid rats him our several times, a tattletale, preying on his conscience, jailed unjustly, the trial scene, “stealthy” or “stealthily”, I stealthily left the river, an interpretation, hiding behind a log, making silent agreements, things that would upset stories, when the murder quarrel sprung up, graverobbing, hidden agendas, through Tom’s eyes, protecting their own, strange dynamics of adults, male adult role models, judges, a source of awe, the senator isn’t 25 feet tall, a prize for excellent trading, an excellent businessman, so Twain, we’ll draw a veil over the rest of this, the meta-materials, that blue covered bible, Gustave Dore, that book didn’t exist yet, pre-Civil War, Mart Twain was in the Civil War for a brief period, when you read Mark Twain, using these racist epithets, this is not a racist book, the low class people use the n word, nobody but an injun, everybody who listening to this, the lack of racism with regards to blacks, one half-breed in this book, he’s about to name Injun Joe as the murderer, escapes into the wilderness, revenge, free range, whatever, free ranging, greatly disappointed, she thought of him that way before, a hanging crime, testifying against a murderer, move towns and change your name, all sorts of crazy things we can’t imagine in our society today, missing kids, a known murderer escapes, casual and expected daily beatings of children, it is unbelievable, historical fact, if this were a fantasy novel, corporal punishment, distasteful as a reader, conflict, love, punishing for the good of his soul, spare the rod and spoil the child, Sid breaks the sugarbowl, refuses to apologize, her conscience reproached her, parallel with Becky, the noblest lie, George Washington and the cherry tree, how interesting Twain as a man is, Stephen King’s It, sympathizing with children, not a trauma book, the adventures of not the travails of, Tom has Agency, very 19th century thing, a politeness/impoliteness contest, if you cross this I’ll beat your head off, two soldiers confronting each other, two medieval knights, some random kid, equal contemporaries, is Huck Finn a little older?, how old are these boys?, a timeless age, not older than 12, his interest in Becky, a kiss, chivalrous love, no vestige of sexual attraction, a wife, girls are yucky, he’s too old for that, Tom gets it, Huck’s not there yet, what are girls good for, when you’re a high class robber, Huck Finn doesn’t hate that idea, when Becky and Tom are missing, they’ve run off to the cave to have sex, they’re dead, between 9 and 12, how much death is a part of life, orphans, drowned in the river, stabbed by a half-breed in the graveyard, he’s so funny, they trade everything, a rat on a string, you can swing it, weird superstitions, incantations, spells, step on crack you break your mother’s back, step on a line break your mother’s spine!, witches, pictures himself dead in great and loving detail, fantasize, when I’m dead people will appreciate me, part of the fantasy, I’ll show them!, coming back in the middle of the funeral, too strong a coincidence, bury a dead cat as a cure for warts, special spell, works great!, a kitten with one eye, my cat with one eye, a knife that doesn’t cut things, a doorknob, a piece of blue glass, I’ll trade you my tooth, if you were an alien, a little kid on the playground, getting clout, telling lies that could be true because they’re so authentic, complete lies all the time, not exactly hypocrisies, taking sweetmeats and apples is hooking vs. stealing a whole ham, piracy vs. stealing, what is going to keep Tom and Joe from becoming Injun Joe and the other guy, found dead, the whole town wanted him hung, they want to pardon him, eating bats and candles and dying of thirst, The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn, black racism, the plot intrigue, figure out the throughline, the plot, the resolution, the description of how he’s died, the unspoken thing, the natives: where are they?, its sad but they were savages, a most horrible thing in this book, they don’t exist anymore, he’s not a specific kind of indian, what was the reason Nigger Jim left with Tom, he’s a runaway slave, Huck’s conscience torments him, that’s stealing from the owner, friendship or basic respect, a love story, a fellow human being, Hook vs. Huck, another pirate story with children, living in barrels, he’s Diogenes, living in a hog’s head, somebody adopts him, he’s a homeless kid who loves the lifestyle of being homeless, all the other kids admire and respect and wish they were him, he can swear and smoke, he doesn’t have to go to school or church, no chores!, grotesquely and lovingly described clothing, the seat of his pants is empty, ultimately respected, good at tricking people into doing things, the famous fence scene, completely free, he had to do this he had to do this, I’m way more free than he is, I have to have a job, he gets money from his parents, childhood psychology, fantasy reality, beautifully and classically, three or four sequels, Tom Sawyer, Detective, League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen, timelessness, anywhere and anywhen, he understands kids, one of the best books ever?, a very good book, so American, easy to fall into, completely immersive, Paul was a kid again, the world through Tom’s eyes, adult insights, “work consists of whatever a body is obliged to do”, a classic for sure, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a more “important” book, Huckleberry Finn has a greater standing, a mighty theme, Moby-Dick, autobiographical, To Kill A Mockingbird, white knighting, look at it in its time, rewrite the book, maybe it is wonderful, it’s not one groups job to not write a book so another group can, who is To Kill A Mockingbird for?, who was it written by?, written by a white lady for a white audience, it’s a movie for a white audience, a book (and a movie) with a message, the message is don’t be asshole, help people when you can, that weird metaphor, killing of a bird vs. killing a rabid dog, a symbol, we don’t have anything like that in this book, an axe to grind, it has a huge axe to grind, more adventurey, much more memory, there’s no growing up, how do you end a book about children: they grow up and get married, Tom Sawyer, Abroad, bringing his experiences to this book, fun and funny, appreciating it as an adult after reading it as a kid, too young for Paul?, quite to the contrary, go back and listen to it, four different comic adaptations, caught up in the fence painting scene, in the trailer, a very personal memory, health problems, a stroke, visiting the hospital, reading the whitewashing scene chapter, she was crying, feeling nostalgic?, it moved her, a generational book, shared thoughts and feelings, thematically less important, a cliche, a trope, reverse psychology, why it is so iconic, it’s the trope maker, a lot of classic literature is dreck that got carried over, considered every now and again, “careful, Jesse”, she hid these signs with a forced gaiety, what her sex call a “good cry”, some things humans have that other animals don’t: language, thoughts that can’t be formulated into words, infer she wants water, yes and no, we are not just talking communicating narrative characters, we are also animals, moved to tears in a positive way, a funny scene, hanging out with Mark Twain is just delightful, Mark Twain’s relationship with Dorothy Quick, old men and young girls, a special empathy, a young person who thought he was amazing, he is his own character, a transatlantic crossing, a correspondence for the rest of his life, what makes this book so special, he’s mighty good at what he’s doing here, a pretty good narration, Nick Offerman, Mark Nelson, Becky Thatcher is barely in the book, quasi-fantasy, a Jules Verne spoof, across Africa, a long great writing career, delightful to read, The Curious Republic of Gondour, Robert A. Heinlein, Missouri boys, Heinlein’s cute not funny, wrote a lot of juveniles, Heinlein’s juveniles are 13 to 20ish, an octagonal writing shed, a podcasting shed, soundproof it from the dogs cows and chickens, John Greenman is pretty good, first novel thought to be written on a typewriter, a printer’s apprentice, super-interested in technology, inventions, running out of money so he wrote books, Tom Sawyer Abroad by Huck Finn by Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer is three people I know, he’s Becky Thatcher as well, Mark Twain is not his real name, a pretty good job getting in Becky Thatcher’s head, the very sympathetic Aunt Polly, how she feels, punishing for the wrong reason, that logic holds, Mark Twain thinking as an adult, an empathetic guy, he would have been a great dad, a troublesome husband, two daughters, A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur’s Court, Innocents Abroad, chunky, 25 hours!, how is this longer?, Grover Gardner, The Mysterious Stranger, what is existence really?, an unfinished collection, a supernatural character, No. 44, translated from the jug, The Mystery Of Edwin Drood, get Maissa or Evan.
The SFFaudio Podcast #721 – Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe – read by Mark F. Smith for LibriVox. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the novel (11 hours 14 minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants include Jesse and Connor Kaye
Talked about on today’s show:
The Life and Strange Surprizing Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, of York, Mariner: Who lived Eight and Twenty Years, all alone in an un-inhabited Island on the Coast of America, near the Mouth of the Great River of Oroonoque; Having been cast on Shore by Shipwreck, wherein all the Men perished but himself. With An Account how he was at last as strangely deliver’d by Pyrates. Written by Himself., April 1719, the first English novel?, this particular style, it’s its own thread for reality, comic book adaptations, the 1997 Pierce Brosnan adaptation, kids versions, why its so popular, popular with adults and kids, it’s fantasy, a certain cozy and comfortable feeling, vicariously satisfying, This Old House, a whole television genre, buy houses and fix them up, cooking shows, making fun of some things or earnest?, some combination of both?, things they tend to leave out is how fucking evil and racist everything is, shocking, he’s a slave, then he is freed, then he enslaves other people, profits he’s making and gifting are slave profits, you got all your money in McDonnell Douglas, how christian you are, part of the appeal of this book, he builds a fort, the ultra-competent man in the Heinlein novels, largely paranoid and insane, gunports, a stockade wall, then another stockade, then another then another, the cannibals, the cave, the bottleneck, a legitimate fear, not really a legitimate fear, cannibalism in the Americas, of the catholic variety, I’m hungry for man-meat, people went a little chewy, cannibalism is a metaphor for slavery, 90 minutes, changed to a Scotsman, Pierce Brosnan wants to play the bagpipes?, not needed for the story, the actor playing Friday, that nice point in the late 1990s, sets, no CGI, lower budget, a comfy film to watch, a forever published book, still not a draw, a curiosity, so old, 100% sure it was public domain, most people don’t know how public domain works, if you’re in any doubt… Robinson Crusoe, it always sells, Maissa Bessada and Alex from Pulpcovers, The Martian by Andy Weir is essentially this book, shipwrecked on a planet all by himself, eventually rescued by space pirates, Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson, a character dressed in goatskins talking about providence, an Easter egg, nautical adventure books, islands named after Robinson Crusoe, the fame of the book, Alexander Selkirk’s island, a pretty great story as well, this fantasy novel vs. the reality of Selkirk, a picture of Crusoe at Alexander Selkirk’s birthplace, conflated into the same guy, Chile, double bang for the buck, fiction and history, remote weird islands, craters named after science fiction writers, the Moon, Mars, the same is true, French South Antarctic Islands, Jules Verne names, a Jules Verne island, the pen sure is mighty, transforming geography in the mental space, Tarzana, California, Edgar Rice Burroughs, mixing of fiction with reality, shipwrecked, sea-sick, marooned, cut out a piece of the world, make a name and a man of himself, a dog and 17 cats he’s murdering, horrible farming practices, the woman is a man, god gave him providence, a tiny version of that, puts his master’s foot on his head, a story going woke, getting his just rewards, Robinson Crusoe is such a horrible human being, he’s the hero, the mindset of the time, there were servants and there were masters, how it is, some people are superior, Frodo and Sam in The Lord Of The Rings, Sam likes being a servant, he’s dedicated to his master, the Gaffer, teaching him how to read, just a kind action, Upstairs, Downstairs, the same kinds of problems, disciplined by the head butler, make people know their place, she’s LARPing what she wants to have her life be, being half French, trying to be better than you are, an honorable servant to a good master, pregnant and out of work, sex out of wedlock, don’t talk about the baby I left there, you eat this lie and put it inside you, learn their Christianity, my master is a good master he only beats the lazy slaves, Australian society, working class people, don’t go to university, turning your back on us, a bizarre mindset, isn’t he a good guy?, he lies to Friday, a good movie and a bad movie, an unfaithful adaptation, we as adult human beings in 2022, friends and co-equals, master and slave, the master is kind to the slave, my name is Master, I lied to you, can’t we live on this island together, what the book gives us, a fantasy of the New World, escaping middle class life, July 29th, 2022, John Scalzi did a tweet: behold my fearful power, culture war nonsense, not even kidding, the white males are the lowest difficulty setting, a very John Scalzi-ism, lowest difficulty setting is about capitalism, the colour of the bandaid, crayons, if you have enough starting capital, what does he have in terms of capital, two fowling rifles, a brace of pistols, a cutlass, so much powder, a lot of tools, a dog, cats, bag of seed for fowl, providence and God, rice and corn and wheat, investment capital, this is a story about capitalism, using your, it’s attacking Jesse personally, a fantasy element to the capitalism, keep growing it and growing it, the ship’s captain, advice, tradeable goods, two gold shillings, silver, hides it in his cave, like a moral lesson about capitalism, like Monopoly, how to do great in capitalism, pro-firearms, Walter Matthau and Robin Williams, survivalism is now preppers, your go back, acronyms, bug-out bags, all fantasy, zombie shows, unironically making weapons to kill zombies, the instinct to like this book, a secret base, cups, a knife, some magazines, traps!, for when the zombies happen, nuclear war, make work, incredibly satisfying, prep harder, prevailing winds, its endless, a fantasy of their real life, accumulating capital, I did the work, Jack, handing out dispensations, he’s the hidden governor of the island, he’s playing god, he was born to it, a crazyman covered in goatskins, organizing fighting forces, legitimate lies, no pants, bristling with weapons, a paranoid madman, killing sprees, what makes them evil?, they exist, right in front of us they’re eating men, Captain Cook, put your head under my foot, they showed him for a while, lessons in the book, how you should act, written when he was 60, conduct literature, pamphlets on how to act, a crazy life, the cherry on top, Crusoe and his father, going against his father’s wishes, if he had just listened to his father, the happiest place in the world is where you are, struggle like the working class, dissatisfaction of the upper class, bad stuff’s going to happen, listening to your parents, religious conversion themes, raving religion, his only book, so thankful to his lord, investment properties, two surrogate sons, the British lord, the other he sends to sea, tops up the younger son, his conclusion is both, the sequel, the further adventures, and a second sequel, back to the island, India, in the Brazil, whose side I’m on, they’re going to do some slaving, the pirates are the badguys, in real life the pirates are anti-slavery, pirates are literally the good guys, they probably fart on you, team human, team liberty, everybody gets a share and their shares are equal, dispense justice, insight from this special book, obedient to god, obedient to me, tongue in cheek, done unconsciously, there’s no evidence, Voltaire, terrible adventures and learns nothing, life can be hilarious, made to suffer by God, a garden of Eden story, he brings capital, the cosmic joke aspect, when Eve shows up she’s a dude, you’re my slave and I can’t make babies with you, Swiss Family Robinson, a Canadian TV show filmed in Ontario and Jamaica, dangerous animals, cheetah stock footage, they build a treehouse, every episode they have adventures, more family friendly, Christians, action adventure for the whole family, a creepazoid story about a madman, whole sequence with a bear, Friday fights a bear, tempting the wolves, a true narrative, a conduct book, how to build up your capital, being born an Englishman, if you picture it in your mind it’s superfuckedup, fortress, his parrot, killing the cats, obsessively counting his stock of sultanas, so unrealistic, after 28 years he comes across some Spaniards, if he could even talk, sign language, speaking Latin, a complete freakazoid, its like he’s mentally ill, raving capitalism, what kind of art does he create?, his journal, no poetry, in line with Crusoe’s nature, everything is practical, constantly building, he builds a canoe, then another, invaders!, how much time he spent building this thing, for what purpose, for didactic purpose, this is how you attract employees, a manual for how to not waste your capital, the culture war is lets focus on the race, these people are inferior because they’re cannibals because they’re not Christians, bears in Brazil?, Columbia or Venezuela, take this horrible story of a guy who couldn’t get along with anybody, William Dampier, scientist/explorer, piratical daring do, avocado barbecue and chopsticks, breadfruit, first to eat flamingo and manatee, less of an insane monster Selkirk, a privateer, the ship is about to sink, a stubborn bullheaded guy, did Dafoe meet Selkirk?, the cats, tropical islands covered in rats, invasive species, a plague of rats, keep the rats down, goats, his clothes rotted away, 4 years vs. 28 years, he could barely speak, trouble forming sentences, what it does to your, solitary confinement, devastating, regained his speech, fairly okay mentally, never as happy as when he was solitary, a minor celebrity, recreate his lifestyle, institutionalized (without an institution), he’s a Heinleinian character, indomitable, Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift, the horse people, Planet Of The Apes, so elegant and refined, the very noble horses, they Houyhnhnms and the Yahoos, taking care of horses all day, an attack on general humanity, a response to Selkirk’s situation, books in dialogue with each other, shipwrecked many times, increasingly improbably places (including Japan), 1726, Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of Several Ships, what’s actually happening in this book, a story that everybody knows, a family that’s shipwrecked, the resultant product of that environment, a famous pulp hero, Tarzan!, shipwrecked off the coast of africa, ape mom, ape family, king of the jungle, talk with the animals, The Jungle Book inspired Tarzan, a guy from Europe who becomes the master of the forest and jungle and is super-racist, a competency family, an accumulation of personal capital vs. actual capital, investment in the new world vs. how to be a fantasy man’s man, animal friends, Tantor the elephant, instead of having a physical capital, a knife is all he needs, just a loincloth, a beautiful Eden like place, super-literate, just from reading his ABC primer books, in the minds of people in the times when Tarzan was being written?, Swiss Family Robinson with a kid, superman, more fantastical, bound to capitalism, Christian values, family values in a Christian context, Tarzan is religion free, being a superior being, wrestling with apes, super-muscles, the term that people hate, the phrase “noble savage”, this evil phrase, the noble part, they live like nobility, they don’t have horrible work hours, they have lots of free time, post-scarcity, doing art, totem poles, artistic endeavors, dance is not held in record as well, post scarcity in terms of food, building up capital, trading parties, very post scarcity, the leadership is these guys are old, they want to give us advice, not a top down system, move the lodge, how to deal with other people over there, slaving was done to do exogamy, not to accumulate human capital, build up stuff to give it away, a famous case of a European at Nootka on Vancouver Island, on the other end of South America, he gets the seasons right, a narrative you can imagine being a didactic popular book, they bookend the 1997 movie, you’ve got to write up Dafoe’s story, I must write this up, what does that opening do?, A Princess Of Mars, the movie adaptation, Edgar Rice Burroughs is the nephew, the effect of that frame, modern filmmaking theory, unnecessary, the fight for the sweetheart is not in the book, some reason to want to go back, Castaway is Tom Hanks as Robinson Crusoe, his Friday is a volleyball, product placement, Wilson basketball, FedEx, he makes art (puts a face on the ball), that framing device, the front of the book, pirates with a y, an advertisement at the end, not a true story, a true tale, when we’re watching the movie, a film camera looking at a guy reading a book, the conflation, to remind us this is a not a real story, maybe that’s the point, Daniel Dafoe is just a photocopier, slightly bizarre, a good editor would have chopped it out, a fan of Dafoe, essential to the film, kill their darlings, there’s no logic to it, good and stupid, an overturning of expectations, it kind of fixes the book, why are you doing that book, to make money?, play, who wouldn’t want to be Robinson Crusoe, be scared of cannibals, less racist and less Christian, random passages from the Bible, a religious ecstasy, changing names, Crusoe’s name and Dafoe’s name, a German Brit, Eurotrash headed to South America, dispense justice, very redeeming, the Prodigal Son, hat in hand [but hat full of jewels], the ending of The Odyssey, killing people, he sees his dog, he sees his slave, treated well by his wife, a bad slave, killing spree, about colonialism, a very interesting artifact, a product of the mindset, [manifest destiny], all of this stuff was made for us, we are the stewards and also the owners, a slave rebellion in South America, the right to do whatever the fuck you want, a president who ran on war with Britain, “54-40 or fight”, the Columbia River, the Oregon Territory, the Hudson’s Bay Company, Columbia (a Goddess walking to the west with settlers behind her), we will take this last, we will make it manifest, from Ontario to British Columbia, most Canadians live near the border, wrapped up in these phrases, what made Canada look as it does, Canada is defined by the existence of the United States, eastern states are natural borders, British colonists, nominal British control, no treaties, a slave rebellion in Guyana, sugar or rubber plantations, the seigniorial system, overseas timeshares, group buy a piece of land, managers, the enforcement of their will, people are highly encouraged to invest income in the stock market, causing externalities without knowing about it, a slaveholder who doesn’t know it, AOC’s phone, “nice slave phone”, superannuation funds, fossil fuel, giving money to secure their future, you don’t want to know, you just want the money, a slippage between what people want and what actually happens, I like chocolate, employing slaves, make the prices lower, the slave beaters, bad business practices, this is justified, working as a prison guard, most of them didn’t have a trial, rich people don’t have this problem, slave labour, they were jerks because they were criminals, a slave becomes a slaver, the reports I’m getting…, charity money, educate the natives, god says charity is good, did he hate being a slave?, Pocket Classics, Meanwhile I began to think deeply, who am I?, who made the world?, 1823 slave revolt, “Bachelor’s Adventure”, “Success”, get rich quick schemes, absentee European owners profiting from slavery, the Demerara rebellion of 1823, 2 days, poor treatment, a widespread mistaken belief, Jack Gladstone, their church group, John Smith, the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, every property holder has equal access to the water (for shipping), we’re all working together, imported from another continent, it is all about human capital, people who’ve had it hard or easy, without the crayons, equipment and tools, not your skin colour, the natives are ugly, a prejudice that little kids have, actors who are objectively acting, there is no fact of the matter, when we get to know people, more handsome or more pretty, a face generated by a brain, getting hung up on the skin colour, the justification for how you became a slave, his job at the beginning of the book, these people were legitimately enslaved, this is not a stolen good, I did work to get it, a rationalization to the self, the enslaving processed happened but it wasn’t done by me, he’s not even thinking about it, a natural thing that happens, I am master, you are slave, a way to divide the working class (the poors), Apple and Raytheon, a technique to divide the working class: talk about race, they’re lacking capital, I could just take the bus, cheaper to take your own car, the time investment, a lot more time, time is money, times is capital, there are people who are racists, what keeps you from becoming a bookwriter, no time to do any art, hone your craft, a lot of leisure time, that noble savage thing again, extracting value in a different way, farming the sea, good returns on their fisheries, the externalities like we’ve done, shipping across the planet, kiwi fruit from Australia, nitrogen from Europe, a product of the unthinking capitalism, Scalzi’s point, American-centric, based on how things are in America, completely relative, different ethnic groups, exploiting one another, we’re feeling our way into this, May 15th, 2012, how life works for them, privileged, a very Scalzi sentence, your average straight white men, all the times slavery has happened in the world, one group of people marketing another group of people, North Africa, race is a modern thing, in the old days people didn’t think skin colour caused slavery, the temperature of the place that were raised, Egypt is warmer than Macedonia, growing to be lazy Egyptians, Varingian guard: lazy like these Byzantines, take prizes, to bring prizes home to sell at market to get rich, this one can teach my children, acquiring and bringing capital in, music and theater, get decadent, the obsession today is a technique to divide those without capital, their third yachts, uninsightful to itself but explains how we got here, reading something from 300 year hundred years ago, spending so much time in it, strange to us, squeecore is about reinforcing the elites, its okay to be the goblin emperor because goblins, gender neutral emperor or empress, transgenders for emperors, how about pirate ships?, why not that?, reading this book is a valuable experience, how did we get to the point we are, society now, hereditary nobility, wealth is hereditary, more hereditary in the past?, works his way up, at least equal to his father, a brothers, a landlubber, romanticism, go out and make my fortune, the story of the British Empire, go off to Canada or Australia or India, white privileged there, the taking of one’s own fortune from the empire, the silver had gone, he had to rub it to make it silver again, capital not being used, from middle class to upper middle class, not being profligate, don’t be the Prodigal Son, choose your marriage wisely, measure your money, insurance, providence providence providence, the luck of God, how come I’m the only one to survive?, almost nothing happens, because deus ex machina, Crusoe never reflects too much on slavery, talking about God on the island, charity, he delivered himself, the opportunities came, more than competent to meet the situation, the fortification aspect, his stockade is a prison for some mutineers, the book works better in the beginning than in the end, setting up the sequel, not the core of the fantasy, Space Family Robinson, competency porn, we can science the shit out of this, listening to disco, disco becomes his god, part of the capital he keeps on his shipwreck, comes to see the beauty of disco, really tapping into the core idea of what we like, the difficulty of being castaway, living outside of and within society, the fortitude, Dafoe: a human triumph story, Swift: a human foibles story, horses are the only thing of value, the nobility of the horse, people claiming to do science, putting energy from the sun into cucumbers and extracting sunlight from the cucumber, ridiculous experiments, floating above and dropping their shit on people beneath them, a hilarious guy, women: don’t fart in front of your man, don’t romanticize marriage so much, a very thoughtful reasonable thing, you both have work to do, marriage is work, how to make Irish babies for dinner: A Modest Proposal by Jonathan Swift, a reputable friend in America, its going to make everybody rich, are you serious?, yes, I’m serious, trying to convince you of its rightness, Lone Star Planet, everybody from Texas, Texas sized planet, supercattle and superbourbon, inspired by an H.L. Mencken essay from the 1920s, Prussia’s special court for government officials, the punishments were worse the higher up the chain you are, murdering politicians is legal, a law of taxes, a slap on the wrist, a very Texas book, so American, The Malevolent Job Holder, pull his nose, cut off his ears, how vastly more attentive he would be, how polite and suave, vain fellows, brilliantly remembered, a dozen such episodes, the jails bulged with his critics, a cauliflower ear, a black eye, a scar over his bald head, political appointees, specifically for politicians, this will keep government small, the libertarian Prometheus award, a magazine column, growing corruption in government, how primitive societies made fun of people who wanted to lead, armed society is a polite society, the Uvalde case [the Robb Elementary School shooting], arresting the parents, an instinct to not cede the authority of violence to incompetent job-holders, they might get fired and get a job in a neighbouring town, who is going to arrest them?, power imbalanced, the sequels, a hefty book, to capitalize on his success (ironic), one of the secrets, reading very old books, capital from Jesse’s grandparents, comics, leftover capital, all really good books, an infinite number of public domain books (not really), sits on a shelf for thirty years, the capital is available, sitting around in a house that Jesse had access to, people listening, I’d like to read Treasure Island, usually older than Tarzan, Moby Dick, Poe, decades of accumulated wisdom, whatever book that came out this week that somebody got a Hugo award for, maybe it’s going to be a classic for the ages, thousands of fiction books every year, not too many, read old books you’re more likely to get a profit from it, accumulated a lot of brain capital, human development, edifying, make yourself greater, instruct or improve someone, moral or religious knowledge, uplift, to improve someone’s mind, we are edified by great books, a rip-roaring book, they start copying and making fun of him, 300 years later people still doing it, 300 years later, 4,000 years from now, direct brain stream, 2 robots arguing on other planets, still be able to make fun of ourselves and Robinson Crusoe, he’s such and asshole, I’m glad we met him, why is he the hero of this story?, more books that are lifts from Robinson Crusoe, nautical themed, lists of books, Jesse feels proud of himself.