The SFFaudio Podcast #619 – READALONG: Lies, Inc. by Philip K. Dick

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #619 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Marissa Vu, Evan Lampe and Will Emmons talk about Lies, Inc. by Philip K. Dick

Talked about on today’s show:
also known as The Unteleported Man, a movie title, confusing the audience, this whole book is basically terrible, very dream like, Trails Of Hoffmann, Philip K. Dick gets grit in his brain and like Lord Runningclam starts forming a pearl around it, E.T.A. Hoffmann, an opera, kinda Poe and Philip K. Dick combined with fairy tales, The Sandman, one of the vignettes,the seed for this name, the seed, a 1975 Philip K. Dick interview, shooting the shit, Richard A. Lupoff, getting out the the field, you cant trust anything writers say, that’s bullshit, I was chatting up his wife at the bar…, the Lupoff’s that in here, lots of gems, reconstructed and constructed, its got everything, leadies, why are leadies in here?, another Plato’s cave analogy, recycling, Faith Of Our Fathers, the para-universe, written around the same time, flapples (one for the rhetorizier), the labour forces, The Crack In Space, human kipple, Malthusian logic, a good novel inside of this mess, a 1950s Dick novel, that frontier stuff, in the 60s he turned on the frontier, the moral core of the novel, a pastiche, dip into everything, I’m going to do Philip K. Dick for you, the rat, so familiar, Doctor Bloodmoney, Doctor Blood, so Philip K. Dick universe, conapts, if you were writing a rhetorizer, better works, more coherent, not put together, The UnUnTeleported Book?, he’s dealing with Nazis again, looking it as a coherent whole (even though it isn’t one), its Stalinism, Treblinka, Zyklon B, distinct experiences, here’s a twist…, spending 11 minutes describing every Philip K. Dick book, this is a really weird book, The Man In The High Castle, its not really our reality, not our world, its the ovens, there is no teleportation device, Mindwarp (Doctor Who), a microwave, Ben Applebaum’s job, there to prove the ovens are real, rumours of the Death Camps, the Germans have taken over the U.N., deNazified and running the space program, The Man In The High Castle, The Simulacrum, Doctor Bloodmoney, “I’m worried the United States is becoming a Nazi nation”, Now Wait For Last Year, African space war, the first Dick novel Will ever read, the giant LSD sequence, so weird, the out of place, the THL soldier, the chapter in Doctor Bloodmoney that’s out of place, super crazy heat without airconditioning, A Scanner Darkly, Faith Of Our Fathers, The Three Stigmata Of Palmer Eldritch, enjoy your mind expansion, another opera connection, The Flying Dutchman, The Wandering Jew, Richard Wagner’s anti-semitism, let’s celebrate Flying Dutchman day, eighteen years later, Dick knew Wagner better than any of us, gotta find love, Roger Zelazny, Marie Celeste, sening messages to people long dead, Brigadoon, Marissa’s opa, his opaness, he’s talking about himself, Oomphalos, Dick going in to get his car impounded, a sexy meter-maid, articulated breasts, the new fropntier isn’t a death camp, The Expanse, Frozen Journey by Philip K. Dick, blacks and browns being frozen, The Crack In Space, extended dreamtime, busy shaving, cheeseburger crumbs, Fred’s gonna take my string, this is how dreams are, dreams and writing lies (fiction) are related, sending messages that the police are your friends (propaganda), accessing Dick’s dreams, when he starts getting these images into characters minds, the women a little less so, a terrible car collage of good Philip K. Dick stuff, looking it as dream notes makes it more valuable, the end, such a cool story, it unraveled, read more novellas, less than half the size, 29,000 and 31,000 of new material, put three stories together, the ped runnels, Our Friends From Frolix 8, We Can Remember It For Your Wholesale, flapples (deflapple), if you kinda squint, a consistency despite it being so messy, autofacs all over this book, from a different phase in his career, Dick is very bothered by the solipsistic experience of dreams, why is CAN-D better than CHEW-Z, a gestalt experience vs., what’s so great about Galactic Pot-Healer, a church community, Faith Of Our Fathers, a diversity of experiences, a shared experience, a shared reality, para-worlds, something that joins us together, Eye In The Sky, Evan should write a book on Philip K. Dick, Evan has unlocked the key, a foundation for solidarity, striving for a shared perspective, we’re afraid of cohering, the true reality behind everything (is horrific), quantum stuff, his other works, a jarring thing, it becomes real, getting into politics, American politics, a very American ideology (to not want to talk about something is wrong), a similar cultural background, murky things, the hypothetical natives, from Chapter 13,

Hoarsely, its voice thickened by the mouthful which it still continued to chew, the creature said, “Good morning. I have your book for you. Sign here.” One of its pseudopodia convulsed and its tip lathered in a spasm which, after an interval, fumbled forth a bulky old-style bound-in-boards volume which it placed on a small plastic table before Rachmael.

“What-book is this?” he demanded, presently. His mind, numbed, refused to interfere as his fingers poked haphazardly at the handsome gold-stamped book which the creature had presented him.

“The fundamental reference source in this survey instruction,” the cephalopodic organism answered as it laboriously filled out a long printed form; it made use of two pseudopodia and two writing instruments simultaneously, enormously speeding up the intricate task. “Dr. Bloode’s great primary work, in the seventeenth edition.” It swiveled the book, to show him the ornate spine. “The True and Complete Economic and Political History of Newcolonizedland,” it informed him, in a severe, dignified tone of voice, as if reproving him for his unfamiliarity with the volume. Or rather, he realized suddenly, as if it assumed that the title would have overpowering influence alone, without additional aid.

“Hmm,” he said, then, still nonplussed-to say the least. And he thought, It can’t be, but it is. Paraworld-which? Not precisely as it had manifested itself before; this was not Blue, because his glimpse of that, ratified by the other weevils, had contained a cyclopsic organism. And this, for all its similarity to the Aquatic Horror-shape, had by reason of its compound multi-eye system a fundamentally different aspect.

Could this actually be the authentic underlying reality? he wondered. This macro-abomination that resembled nothing ever witnessed by him before? A grotesque monstrosity which seemed, as he watched it devour and consume-to its evident satisfaction-the remainder of its eyes, almost a parody of the Aquatic Horror-shape?

“This book,” the creature intoned, “demonstrates beyond any doubt whatsoever that the plan to colonize the ninth planet of the Fomalhaut system is foolish. No such colony as the projected Newcolonizedland can possibly be established. We owe a great debt to Dr. Bloode for his complete elucidation of this complex topic.” It giggled, then. A wet, slurred, wobbly giggle of delighted mirth.

his eyes swim, this is The Book Of The Calends from Galactic Pot-Healer, Evan doing a meta-interpretation of Dick, shifting realities, what is humanity?, Dick thinks there is a truth, in what Dick novel is there not a truth?, there’s always a truth, in the end there is a reality, although there are all false fronts and shifting realities there’s always a truth arrived at through some sort of solidarity, unpack the natives, what might be the objective truth, why Galactic Pot-Healer is the best Dick novel, it has Nick And The Glimmung as its Silmarillion, a deeper history, you know…this book was wrong, what is this book really about?, its not about teleportation, why did the Jews get killed in ovens, for immense amounts of human history people have been colonizing new lands, going back to the Flying Dutchman, the people that stayed behind, how does it make you feel to see people leaving the country, the Jews, here comes the officials, a new place where you will colonize the east, a BIG lie, that turn is a very Philip K. Dick thing, kinda like Glimmung in shape but not in power, the way the Book Of The Kalends works in Galactic Pot-Healer, he is subject to the author’s need to find community and meaning, raise Haldscalla, they form a union, they fight their demons together, disconnected and an LSD sequence, it doesn’t resolve in the way we want it to, the 1966 verison:

Thinking that, he paused before entering the area of light; in the darkness of the side street, unnoticed by passers-by, he scrutinized Freya Holm a long, long period.

“Hmm,” he said, half aloud. Contemplatively.

“What are you thinking about?” Freya asked shyly, her dark, full lashes trembling as she returned his stare. “The years of deep sleep ahead of you?”

“Not quite that,” Rachmael answered. “Something a little more this side of sleep. But connected with it.” He put his arm around her.

“Gee,” Freya said after a time.

In his pocket the container of components hummed happily.

almost like a sex metaphor version, The Unteleported Man (1966), the version we’re hearing in audio, when Evan did his episodes on Lies, Inc. and The Unteleported Man, we need some rogue cuts, Dick is doing something here, what is the objective truth in this novel, there’s an authoritarian state in Newcolonizedland, where does the delusion come from?, the LSD dart?, the teleportation itself?, the cultural image is Stalinism, the natives are not there, terra nullis, the eye-eater super-spy, Ben Applebaum is the Jew after the Germans, Arab-Israeli, undercooked, its because its a dream, he can bring it all together, bringing it into a beautiful bow, all the boob looking, all the fake coffee, here we don’t have that, its front heavy, 5 or 6 revisions, from Fantastic, a 1965 version, a 1979 version, Paul Williams’ found 3 segments, the 2003, Philip K. Dick is actually a really good writer, a mashup of notes, an August Derleth(like) collaboration, his 18 year journey, a really good story there, it has all the makings for one of his classics, his business is crumbling, such a Philip K. Dick setup, analogizing his own life, Matson, it puts an idea in your heads, they’re a private investigator firm, his motivation is the Truth, the company maintaining the lie is not Lies, Inc., Listening Instructional Educational Services, that game at the start of Galactic Pot-Healer, two visions of the internet, when you’re bored at work you engage at various games, puns and book titles, the other vision of the internet is The Book Of The Kalends, books are not popular, a lot of Moby-Dick, he’s doing a Jonah, the heart of the darkness, strike strike what’s beyond the mask?, a new study in Nature about the relationship between elevated rates of autism (and related) in transgender and gender diverse – is untalkableabout – underneath the mask of identity is more onion, I am nothing, there’s nothing there underneath, Ishmael disappears, the universe fucked me by giving me birth, he aims his hate at a particular whale, it is challenging me by its very existence, get on board with this creative project, all the Project: Plowshare stuff, are you willing to use the reality distortion weapons?, there might not be any natives, it breaks Jesse’s ability to understand a book, Max Brand’s The Untamed, anti-romantic, the incoherence of the natives is the incoherence of the novel, Dick deals with indigenous people in several novels, The Crack In Space, Dr. Futurity, Time Pawn is beautiful to read, we could do another show on Time Pawn, the editing is worse than the weird chapter in Doctor Bloodmoney, less like a novel than fixup by someone else, why not just read the originals, they’re not available, it doesn’t exist, you can’t access it, NESFA press, the public domain part of it, an editor said: I will buy this, squeeze another novel out, he was a slim volume writer anyway, Herman Melville from chapter 58:

“Consider the subtleness of the sea; how its most dreaded creatures glide under water, unapparent for the most part, and treacherously hidden beneath the loveliest tints of azure. Consider also the devilish brilliance and beauty of many of its most remorseless tribes, as the dainty embellished shape of many species of sharks. Consider, once more, the universal cannibalism of the sea; all whose creatures prey upon each other, carrying on eternal war since the world began.

Consider all this; and then turn to the green, gentle, and most docile earth; consider them both, the sea and the land; and do you not find a strange analogy to something in yourself? For as this appalling ocean surrounds the verdant land, so in the soul of man there lies one insular Tahiti, full of peace and joy, but encompassed by all the horrors of the half-known life. God keep thee! Push not off from that isle, thou canst never return!”

his ship is gonna be impounded, the amount of delay, that menace that conspiracy, when you live in a police state, the police are our friends, the FBI is out to get you (just not you specifically), the NSA’s official line: collect everything, the wellness check, Nancy’s not answering the door, what the hell Nancy?, the nosy neighbour, this is a reality, a nightmare, the govt of Quebec was trying to convince people to vote for them using a wedge issue, religious headcoverings, didn’t the Saudis have it right all along?, they had good reason for it, someone not wearing a mask?! how dare you!, reflecting, there was a reason for abstaining, that kind of positive conservatism, there might have been a reason for that fence, Philip K. Dick is exploring some really cool stuff, Philip K. Dick’s greatest book: LIES, Inc., more connections, the nexus book for all of the Philip K. Dick stuff, it is the oomphalos!, not a pessimistic writer, his authoritarian states, Orwell’s Nineteen-Eighty Four, The World Jones Made, The Man Who Japed, that settler family, a symbol at the end of that tyrrany, A Scanner Darkly has some hope, Radio Free Albemuth, a chickenhead, the West coast, travelled across the continent, they’re not farther West, the sympathy that dick has for those that stay behind and those that want to flee is a really interesting theme, the colonial fiction of the British Empire, the world is their planet, going home is not a big deal, maybe a class issue, who are the people who move to the States?, the poors, the second sons fleeing murder convictions, free land, fleeing persecution, those who are left behind, isn’t our country being brain drained?, a chance to begin again, sex robots and farm robots (slaves), suspicious of it and attracted to it, he’s talking about something very important to human beings, the US never got over the frontier, Turner’s thesis, build a log cabin, remaking democracy with the frontier experience, culturally you have the Western and Science Fiction, and the Pacific (the Philippines), how the Philippines was colonized, Clark Ashton Smith had a story published in a Philippines publication, appreciating life in the Philippines, the same kind of occupation, Rudyard Kipling had his first stories published in a railroad publication in India, Afghanistan, they don’t live there, you send your sons off to fight those wars, the fear of what’s on the otherside of that train journey east, reading the newspapers, oh my god!, we didn’t have the complete story!, the official lies that are being told, he is the product of his environment, loving these German operas, having a German name and being fearful of Germans, Black Earth: The Holocaust As History And Warning by Timothy Snyder, Hitler was trying to make his own frontier in Eastern Europe, how much Hitler was influenced by the colonization of the American West, Kentucky is not naturally part of the United States, Dick’s intention, a lot of the fascism conversation in science fiction, John W. Campbell vs. Joseph Campbell (being Nazis), Hitler was a romantic, romantics are dangerous, practicalists are dangerous in a different kind of a way, Karl May, they have adventures together, turning the non-threatening into a Crusade, theoretically motivated by a real book (a fictional story), the romantic idea, he is engaging to get out of the house and conquer, get out from under, the send off point, the Germans were the first ones to fight the Nazis, there are good Americans, another anniversary of Hiroshima, two planes that dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, they didn’t have aircraft that could hold the two nukes, it almost was the case the British dropped the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and Nagasaki wasn’t the original target for that day, I’m glad its overcast because now I’m not dead, the luck of Kokura, the Japanese were not going to give up, Dan Carlin’s Supernova In The East, the military was 100% in charge but from the bottom up, Pearl Harbour was a naval effort, can you make any analogies to the United States today, healthcare and a living wage, more aircraft carriers and war with Venezuela, Russia, and China, Russia’s got a vaccine and nobody believes it (scientists and others), two Jesse rap battle, all the American liberals refusing to take a Corona virus vaccine, its very easy to forget where stuff come from when you benefit from forgetting from where it comes from.

The Unteleported Man illustration by Lloyd Birmingham

Fantastic Stories Of Imagination The Unteleported Man by Philip K. Dick

Fantastic Stories Of Imagination The Unteleported Man by Philip K. Dick

Fantastic Stories Of Imagination The Unteleported Man by Philip K. Dick

Fantastic Stories Of Imagination The Unteleported Man by Philip K. Dick

The Unteleported Man illustration by Harry Borgman

Lies, Inc. by Philip K. Dick

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!

Reading, Short And Deep #228 – Life O’ Dreams by W. Douglas Newton

Podcast

Reading, Short And DeepReading, Short And Deep #228

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss Life O’ Dreams by W. Douglas Newton

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

Life O’ Dreams was first published in The Windsor Magazine, November 1919.

Podcast feed https://sffaudio.herokuapp.com/rsd/rss

Posted by Scott D. Danielson

Reading, Short And Deep #225 – Æpyornis Island by H.G. Wells

Podcast

Reading, Short And DeepReading, Short And Deep #225

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss Æpyornis Island by H.G. Wells

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

Æpyornis Island was first published in the Pall Mall Budget, December 27, 1894.

Podcast feed https://sffaudio.herokuapp.com/rsd/rss

Posted by Scott D. Danielson

The SFFaudio Podcast #529 – READALONG: Typee by Herman Melville

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #529 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, and Evan Lampe talk about Typee by Herman Melville

Talked about on today’s show:
a peep at Polynesian life, 1846, in which the protagonist is eaten, the island itself is non-fiction, Paul’s theory, Melville wanted to talk about the non-fictional aspects, how horrible western society was treating the islanders, this is not right, his most popular book (in Melville’s life), drawn from life, no one liked his imaginative stuff, the introduction, it proved to be popular on board ship, doth he protest too much?, the appendix, what the French are doing, what’s going to happen?, Evan’s first three podcasts episodes, his time amongst the cannibals, improved style (not improved microphone), writing scripts, 200 episodes, starting with the Lovecraftian element, the South Seas as a place where the Deep Ones made a deal, Dagon, biographies of Melville, lifestyle, wealthy families in decline, Edgar Allan Poe, a genetic East Coast elite white guys, a history of whaling, a literary genetic connection, Chapter 21, one day in returning…, Stonehenge, the druids, peculiar construction, so profound is the shade, he doesn’t believe the natives built these constructions, divine origins, an extinct and forgotten race, musing at the pyramid of Cheops, built upon massive stone foundations, the burying grounds, the race has deteriorated, habitual indolence, incontestable marks of great age, under the direction of Monu, dedicated to the immortal wooden idols, are there stone foundations all over the Marquesas?, this is a book about labour, Pierre and Confidence Man, Herman Melville Wants You To Quit Your Job, Bartleby, The Scrivener, one of the last places colonized by humans, a metaphor?, The Time Machine by H.G. Wells, the white Sphinx is a symbol for us, it baffles us, deep time, a post scarcity society, Hawaii, ravaged by colonialism, breadfruit, the mom, no resentment, profiting from previous generations, universal basic income, young people like tattoos!, colonial gaze, work is going on, not the work we’re used to, alien, salmon runs in the Pacific North West of North America, how much of this story is true?, only there for four weeks vs. four months, why do they want to keep Tomo?, endo vs. exo eating, cannibalism is real, the parallels between the beginning and the middle, Melville is so funny, a delight to read, the lack of food on the ship, poor Pedro the one rooster who ends up in a coffin under the Captain’s vest, all the French ships, taboo, Tomo and Toby, fleeing servitude, fleeing their tribe, deserters, why don’t they want them to flee?, no lack of food, pig and breadfruit and coconut, a long history of indigenous history taking in runaway slaves, John Jewitt, Maquinna, Nootka Sound, the Mourning Wars, Iroquois, you are now uncle Joe (who died), the same phenomenon, all the attention he gets, seen in relief, character list, bathe his body, a local celebrity, in a post scarcity environment, novelty and celebrity, social capital, I know Wayne June!, flee my tribe, all his fears of being cooked, Moby-Dick, Queequeg, selling his heads, essentially married, a delight, Fayaway, tattoos, do your face, in the tribe, becoming one of them, he can never go back, hilarious, a blank canvas, they’re not going to eat him, pantomime, the valley of the Hapars, they’ll eat you, they can’t be trusted, maybe that was Toby, an equivalent of Toby, endocannibals, preserving the spirit and the flesh, the cracker and the wine, she Jesse fear Paul, transubstantiation, concretized, perpetuated dogma, an innate sense of the value of humans, preserving your relationship to your loved ones, a beautiful thing, had the captain kept on his journey, the raft of the Medusa, what happened to the other guys?, The Island Of Doctor Moreau, the narrator ate one of the survivors of the shipwreck, cannibal sailors, Robert A. Heinlein, Stranger In A Strange Land, a sacrament, Mike broth, journeys in the Pacific, Job: A Comedy Of Justice, The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, Chapter 26, the descriptive chapter titles, the marriage system on Nuku Hiva, popping the question, tedious courtships are unknown, a very tender age, a frolic of the affections, of graver years, as harmonious as so many turtles, supplementary husbands, no wife has less than two husbands, the matrimonial yoke, Marissa VU, 1970s, the roots of Science Fiction, a Silverberg story, a month-wife, what gender relations will be like when you get down the road from birth control, if you don’t like your husband…, a house-raising, this Garden of Eden, a fucking warship, thinking long and hard, as soon as the missionaries come, prostitution, a metaphor for transition, corrupted and twisted, the missionary gaze, the material reality of colonialism, the mosquitoes, flies, not utter heaven, it probably gets hot, a foil for European sexuality, Denis Diderot’s The Supplement For The Voyage Of Bougainville, French and Tahitan societies, women are not considered property, 1780s, those Enlightenment people, Coming of Age in Samoa by Margaret Mead, no property transfer, the slaving system, exogamy, no formal manumission, fix the guns, make the pop-guns, a novelty, an exciting item, the humans have great value in themselves, what’s really going on there, roving feet, greener grasses everywhere, Omoo, his name is Typee, taken to the court of a Polynesian princess, I’ll just be your dude, white people hanging out, behold the glorious result, Christian worship, Honolulu, draught horses, evangelizing beasts of burden, your money, you in your salons, Christianize the Pacific, not doing any good, you’re doing wrong here, the devestation of the pacific, what’s about to happen, six French warships, claim it for the Republic, Liberty, enslave and make an empire, middle 1840s, Empire’s on the books now, The White Pacific: U.S. Imperialism and Black Slavery in the South Seas After the Civil War Paperback by Gerald Horne, the sea-otter fur trade, claims to have eaten Captain Cook’s big toe, white people parties, the flavour of Captain Cook’s toe, the full barrel, a great adventurer, what a shame, fantasize about writing, Magellan killed by the Filipinos and Cook killed by the Hawaiians, Captain George Vancouver, a feat of imposture, medieval relics, the effect of this book, the heads, The Red One by Jack London, the ancient astronauts idea, New Guinea, oral cultures, flexible stories, losing the knowledge of what was known, but gaining value, Bros. Grimm, ossified or concretized, creepy pastas, taking away the sharp edges, Tangled 2, Frozen 2, Moana (2016), for kids, if you’re interested in the frontier, how do the women get anywhere, an arbitrary tabu, [Jesse was thinking of a story entitled The Victim from Space by Robert Sheckley] Robert Silverberg’s Worlds of Wonder, Science Fiction 101, the narrator’s from Earth, giant paws, second pulse of migration, The Monsters by Robert Sheckley, Don’t Forget To Kill Your Wife by Robert Silverberg, a satire of conventions, Colony by Philip K. Dick, I Trusted The Rug Completely by Robert Silverberg, the Pacific is the vastness of space, an alien culture, as alien as anything we’ve ever seen (that’s sentient), first contact, Beyond Lies The Wub, Martian go-birds, the consequences of eating wub, rocket ships and technology, the ideas that are being explored, The Bones Of Time by Kathleen Ann Goonan, the vastness of time and space, King Kamehameha, this nice tourist place, The Brady Bunch goes to Hawaii, a cursed idol, Uncle Tom’s Planet, one thing we know about science fiction writers (they were readers at one time), James P. Crow by Philip K. Dick, dealing with the past in their own stories, as close to Philip K. Dick as you can find, a pretty weird guy, how many stages the rocket has, just a guy who likes writing and likes ideas, not as obsessed with boobs, the sociology of what’s going on in a culture, Bring Me The Head Of Prince Charming, Roger Zelazny, Human Man’s Burden, The Native Problem, distant seas of talking, one of Evan’s favourite passages, climate change, China, Taiwan, not having a job is a humiliating state, make peace with consumption, a lot of moralism, anxiety about consumption, have fewer people, abolish the suburbs, Chapter 31, the girls again, dressing their fair and abundant locks, bathing five times a day, coconut oil, hair gel, the wages of living in this kind of world, not even a podcast even, or writing a book, or writing music, what will we do when we don’t have work?, the Puritan work-ethic, the Green New Deal, people need a job, people need meaningful work, a lot of nail salons, pet stores, pet waxing, no bookstores, a little puppy time, what kids want to do, some girls just don’t go outside, a local dude who wanted to look really fair, Galaxy Science Fiction, April 1957, restless blue-grey seas, a secret desire to be dead, a woman who loves truly and well, I’m through wasting my time, the sin against her father, the most precious thing a woman can give a man (a painful death), the ethos you’ve stepped into, long-pig (human meat), a Warner Bros. cartoon, the volcano god, Strange Eden by Philip K. Dick, Circe, transforming men into animals, why pigs?, the point of that story, other animals mentioned, lions, big cats, wolves, Brent is served meat and bread, is Circe turning men into pigs so she could eat them?, tastes like pork, Silverlock by John Myers Myers, what would have happened to Odysseus?, a fox, trickster, working out his own ideas, such a weird story, a fantasy with a science fiction setting, Piper In The Woods by Philip K. Dick, it could never work as an Electric Dreams episode, Evan is obsessed with work, maybe its a very Melville story, indigenous person, something very appealing about this, that colonial gaze, academic-y terms, Orientalism by Edward W. Said, witches, forming covens, In Thessaly by Clark Ashton Smith, The Golden Ass, transformation into animals, from the 2nd Century, inset tales, Scheherazade, Chaucer, story with the story, Borges, we’re lucky to live in such times, Evan needs to escape work, guaranteed basic income, too hung up on work, rich people bore Evan, Evan’s students resist it, sailor in a land full of Typees, in Marseilles the men are just sitting around drinking coffee all day, the labour movement, 8 hours for work, 8 hours for rest, 8 hours for what we will, working three jobs, she’s not bragging, the fundamental disconnect, industry, economy, hard work, saving, the more moral meaning, these have to be abolished, a cultural revolution, back in China, picking on the Buddhist monks, post scarcity communism, the clock and the time discipline, knights fighting snails, The Myth of the Machine by Lewis Mumford.

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #509 – READALONG: Autofac by Philip K. Dick

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #509 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Marissa Vu, and Evan Lampe talk about Autofac by Philip K. Dick

Talked about on today’s show:
Paul is pizzled, a novellette, Galaxy, November 1955, an episode of Electric Dreams, not as terrible, low standards, serious problems, the most redeemable, redeeming aspects, why we have to have cunnilingus scenes for no reasons, to care about characters we don’t care about, a naked one for a change, in charge of the sex situation, an agenda, the last five (or three years), except on Game Of Thrones, they really laid this shit on heavy, the gender of the hacker character doesn’t matter to the story, sex scenes hurt the story, a double twist ending, abberant from the story, something completely different, breaking the fourth wall, directed at the TV audience, I know you need the sex scene so here it is, Black Mirror, Metalhead, could be set in the same world, a sequel world, boyfriend is a librarian, robots can’t have children, are they on a loop, meaning and purpose and existence drops away, doomed every other robot to extinction, the same conversation, as soon as you start thinking about it it breaks down, a happy ending, this is just as bad as the actual story, way worse than the ending in the book, going to the stars, that primitive existence, already cut-off, horses and sad chickens, human animals again, degrading, the ending, human civilization is being propped up, sliding right into the toilet, back to pre-barbarism, a nuclear war, how well are humans going to survive, doomed hunter gatherer tribes, the alternative presented in the TV show, hippie buses, we could store that data electronically, nobody’s getting older, the guy with a limp, she cuts her own head open, Rust, Isaac Asimov, the robots can’t move anymore, what’s going to happen next, I wanna watch that episode, they set up a whole premise, she left behind the two guys, she’s kind of a monster, using people as a means to an end, lying to the robot, the logic bomb, other than that she’s a monster, a consequentialist ethic, all over the world, by ending that autofac, robot communities, my community matter and everybody else doesn’t, duplicate communities, one node, only one autofac in the TV adaptation, the rest of the world is dead, she’s doomed the last beings on the planet, waiting for their amazon deliveries, watching it on Amazon Prime, people think this is a story about Amazon, you can’t communicate with the postman, leave it under the eave next time, those punchcards, soiled, missing a part, dealing with bureaucracy, kind of a reverse cargo cult story, people trying to stop the automated deliveries, why do they want to stop it?, they’re fucking robots, they’re polluting everything, wresting the means of production back from the autofac, polluting and ruining the planet, resonating a little better, not amazon not capitalism, the unstoppable beast, the system that’s broken is humanity, the cargo cults in the Pacific, Seabees, vastly unfamiliar, giant birds, “CARGO”, wonderful goodness, not well represented in the family of man, educated in the United States, Hawaii, a remote atoll, grasp the full industrial might, if you raise the American flag, an aircraft shaped object out of wicker, prosperity, manna from heaven, if the forms are followed, why are they rejecting this, Puerto Rico, what is happening in the story (sorta), you can’t beat capitalism by talking to your non-voting representative, control of the means of production, a really interesting story, blowing up Amazon headquarters, a pretty top down organization, if it’s head robot was not in charge, are profits are temporary, Boston Tea Party, boycotts, South Africa, Apartheid, moving for reconciliation, had the humans not catalyzed this particular conflict, needing the resources, tasty titanium, a stellar opening scene, acting as if the milk tastes terrible, a fabulous sequence stupidly replaced, harpoon, why is she wearing the little round sunglasses, supposed it look steampunk, jumpsuits and truck with no cab, mad at the milk, angry at the truck, it would take some imagination, the lazy version, this makes it connected to the world of SkyNet, The Terminator movies, a much more bleak human future, one AI and youre done, we’ve made ourselves destruction, “it’s worse than that” (as Bryan Alexander) would say, not the premier object of interest, we’ve made ourselves into rats or pigeons, this Marxist aspect to Philip K. Dick, man the tinkerer, once we’re totally consumers we might as well be robots, they are robots, you’re not allowed to tinker with your iPhone or your John Deere tractor, pre-computers, a modern car, Charles Stross, an iPad needs to be taken to a wizard, Evan’s right, commercial culture, semi-artificial, you are kind of an android, Reading, Short And Deep, But Who Can Replace A Man by Brian Aldiss, massive collapse, stuck out in the universe, find new value, a lone surviving human, “Yes master, immediately.”, maybe we don’t need to have man, Rust by Joseph E. Kelleam, an abject figure, as the big machines bore slowly down on him, his countenance was ravaged by starvation, right back into slavery, in their quest to find meaning, they just leave them behind, “good luck, brother”, telling these stories from different directions, not completely hopeless, recreated life, life is an an anti-entropy, DNA can do it, solving problems, plastic houses and buckets of milk, little robot versions of themselves, Steam, a reddit thread, Factorio, a horrible premise, use up all of its resources,a planet destruction games, SimCity, Civilization, a factory that makes more factories, a brilliant ending, Asimov’s 3 laws, The Defenders, the Leadies, The Penultimate Truth, The Electric Ant, Westworld as an adaptation of The Electric Ant, seeing reality as it is, transparent head, lights in their heads, Ex Machina (2014), she blanches when she’s exposed to the truth, smashes the capsule, she’s a really good actor?, all part of the ruse, just to trick the audience, a stupid line to justify the shower sex scene, the robot visitor, that whole visualization, why does she look like that, they’re probably experimenting with sex robots, how unsexy the autofac (story) robots, that hawk, a sex act, changed by its environment, a little vent shooting out seeds, a very nice reveal, an uncontrollable system like capitalism or a von Neumann, a grey goo story, FEMA automated, how Haiti is so badly done, the NGOs help so hard that basically everybody’s worse off than they were, culture-jam, jam up the works, the agency and the action, you fake a natural disaster, almost what happened in Somalia, the warlords laid a trap, Black Hawk Down (2001), change the game in the local area, Iraq, under continual occupation since 2003, massive forces that you cannot comprehend, the industrial capacity millions and millions and millions of times bigger than your little atoll, an agenda you cannot fathom or control, more relevant than ever, seeing through a glass clearly, the vines that were growing, weeds, things taking over, how Philip K. Dick talks about children, Ray Bradbury, obsessed with insects, the bugs, insects like in Second Variety, a sequel, tinnily above O’Neal’s head, slag and ruin, sickly stalks, rat colonies, radiation, birds, little details, a really good writer, not a clunky writer, description, evocative, the kind of contrast Dick is always doing, conversations vs. perception, really good timing, slapping at a mosquito, receptors fully extended, the search bug fitted perfectly, a vague tub, Expendable, ants on his lawn, a talking spider in his house, in our vast war against the insects, how the birds are watching and twittering, cockroaches, figurative robotic cockroaches, a moth, in the moth ridden darkness of the night, peering, planning,tungsten seeking food, into the shadows of the thick packed vines, it builds itself a little coffin, high on amphetamines, little touches, a groundbreaking novelette, long sentences, the factory representative had arrived, the insect tech, The Simulacrum, The Man Who Japed, the Minority Report movie, artificial bees, something to consider, quasi-human, a biped chassis, testimony to nature’s efficiency, lady in a catsuit, a gender, a testament to the times we live in, quite a production, dramatic, sound and fury that comes to nothing, community meetings, a bunch of people disagreeing, a common goal, so unimportant Philip K. Dick didn’t bother to point to it, Judith O’Neal, the metallic paper, six words, the Kansas City settlement, no fluttering breasts, big excitement, they are placing the orders, back-order sheets, almost like you’re living in Puerto Rico, factory analyzed needs, ALL SHIPMENTS SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE, we got what we wanted didn’t we?, exactly the kind of relationship the native people of B.C. had when they traded with the Hudson’s Bay Company, rifle skill, bow skill, NAFTA, the Trans Pacific Partnership, unable to participate, very political and very insightful story, BC’s Agricultural Land Reserve, another pipeline from Alberta, almost a trade war, pollution, that’s what this story’s all about, capitalism and independence, the beaver trappers, more effective more efficient, trapped, once you have a rifle, opening by each of the directors, Travis Beecham, a machine doing exactly what its creators meant it to do, The Monkey’s Paw, a technological parable, we’re fighting our own nature, what he’s saying sounds awesome, creating the demand for the process it wants to do, expanding markets, a good story for the 1950s, manufacturing markets, creating more demand to fulfill the runaway production, everyone is dead from the war, I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream by Harlan Ellison, what we do, creating fake demand, funny characters, angsty wives, almost poetic, again with the vines, the Philip K. Dick Rhetorizer, it remained inert totally unresponsive, rigid, sore and unshaven chin, they’re taking over the world!, shapeless piles, a different mode, in its cocoon, a vent, an ovipositor, a terrific story, they give up, that age of mankind is over, spread out into the university, that would be neat, is he being ironic?, the nozzle continued to spurt out its torrent of metal seeds, a metaphor, predicting the present, Teslas into orbit for no reason, new markets for cars in out space, a terrific science fiction writer when he wants to be, his novels, humans and their relationships to each other, flat characters, a character, working through those ideas, a different mode, a downer ending, Juno Temple, Emily Zabriske, mining borax, Alice in wonderland?, replaced, took away from the power of the idea, cute but doesn’t make any sense, it works at the moment, not a classic, they’re not trying to make you think that, we shouldn’t like that, a better story, very dark, a real monster, brutal, a coldly calculating witch, on her plate, she doesn’t care about her two companions, you have to presume she disabled the bombs, why does she need to bring them?, they’re there as distraction, she kills her old boyfriend, the humanoid killbot, weird machines hunting down people, the difference in writing, an economy of storytelling, in black and white, inevtiably taken on a terrible journey, an action sequence before meetings, if you were grading all the television, they’re not A students, making excuses, terrible assignment, they’ve gotta have a nude scene a kill bot and a harpoon, the same premise, three guys standing around and we don’t know why, get ready, follow the plan, pretending the milk tastes terrible, something’s wrong with the milk, their semantic sensibilities, a performance designed to achieve something, massive success, a massive failure, a great setup and premise, in a science fiction story, too expensive to film, visual effects way more expensive, druggie glasses, a whole steampunk vibe, I’ve never seen a film people pretending milk taste bad and then talking to a truck, a guy getting into an argument with his toaster or door, a classic scene, could have been amazing, they’re just hippies, the meetings, factions and conflict, Dr. Bloodmoney, they had to kill that teacher, post-apocalyptic literature, how they deal with it in The Terminator series, John Connor aka JC aka Jesus Christ, bottom up order, fascist dystopia, the female doing the exact same thing, have sex with her robot boyfriend in the shower, he doesn’t even have any books, the books she was collecting up, a Borges, this is what they do to show they’re intellectual, books are never ever mentioned in the original short story, agency, other novels and stories do that, it isn’t a criticism of Amazon really, “one day we will be Amazon!”, a critique of capitalism.

Autofac by Philip K. Dick - Galaxy, November 1955

Autofac by Philip K. Dick - Galaxy, November 1955

Autofac by Philip K. Dick - Galaxy, November 1955

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #505 – READALONG: The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #505 – Jesse, Maissa Bessada, and Julie Davis talk about The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling

Talked about on today’s show:
1894, not a novel, not a collection in the normal sense, Kipling wrote the whole thing for his daughter, a book of children’s stories, died at six years old, when Kipling left India, the Just So Stories, an inscribed edition, the opposite of a sad book, sad or not sad, wonderful or interesting, the law of the jungle, it’s not all Mowgli stories, a natural progression, the first story about the white seal, interacting with men Rikki-Tikki-Tavi, Her Majesty’s Servants, distressing, suffering, war, circling back, that’s just life, finding Shangri La, he lead his people to the promised land, his friend’s skin is missing, hard-hearted, beast of burden, the perspective Kipling sympathized with, the lower ranks, the simple working guys, stead in battle, Jesse’s not very quick with the “themes” in the book, obedience, finding your place in society, a template for the Baden Powell scouts, interaction with nature as a system, all these animals are for us to eat, an exemplar, how many tendrils have grown through to our modern day society, Kim, how influential the book is, the Great Game, Tim Powers’ Declare, religious power in the desert, in the background, Hathi Trust, its from this book, (if there is a) God’s work, preserving the ephemera of 19th and 20th century magazines, a scraper, such a good resource, big systems don’t operate for human beings, wow of course, elephants never forget, and they’re wise, you cannot not remember it, Tantor.com, the elephant from Tarzan Of The Apes, the Indian word for elephant, from 0 to 6, relearn all the things that he learned, low-lifes, lesser-down, class stuff, when Mowgli goes to town, Edgar Rice Burroughs, wow, that’d make a good story, Tarzan is Mowgli’s story in Africa, a series of lessons, Tarzan is pure fantasy, a tiger in Africa, colonialism, a fable, a fantasy, not writing from experience, no sympathy and fellow feeling, no existential crisis, lynching, a justified revenge, the scene with the white seal, Mowgli is no king, lessons to learn, that amazing idea, I don’t know where everything came from, a huge splash, the ripples are reaching us today, why is this thing continuing?, that’s why its a book, half the stories aren’t even in the jungle, the law of the jungle, bringing human values into the jungle and taking jungle values out of the jungle, when Dick is on my back, the bullocks: “here’s all we know”, how would they interact with each other, the Emir of Afghanistan, are the beasts as wise as the men?, thus is it done, sucked into the Bollywood musical experience, Lagaan (2001), the desire of the little guy to get out from under, here’s how the British were able to conquer, they obey as men do, Animal Farm, a Mr. Spock haircut, one more author, Jack London, H.G. Wells, stealing from a great, The Call Of The Wild and White Fang, Buck did not read the newspapers, the error of his arrogance, shanghaied!, the most amazing story, Black Beauty and Beautiful Joe, you don’t know what pain is, the pain of the animals, Mowgli’s parenthood, a picture of Kim, all the writers who write really well, the story of Kipling as a boy, taking aspects of his own life and magnifying them, Christopher Nolan’s movie, you monster!, what is true and what is love?, an innate sense, the irony, such a deep love of humanity, the mother wolf, melancholy, the potential of man, super-modern, there’s no distance between me, William Morris, Thomas Mallory, the dosts, distancing grammar, if Riki-Tiki-Tavi was written today, intimate and close, a light and fun one, snake deaths, so evil, they’re good (to eat), just following their natures, this is my job, the perfect look at man and creature together, each following their own natures, his business in life was to fight and eat snakes, being nuzzled in a bag, why people like to hang out with puppies and kittens, he has a place, verandah, tiny little dogs, handbag dogs, a different kind of love, dogs domesticated people, wheat also domesticated people, fruit trees domesticated human, cows and chickens, being on a dog’s level, co-existing, Toomai Of The Elephants, complete domestication, we are witness to the majesty of animals, Elephant Boy (1937), the radio drama, distancing vs. intimate, he writes good, another strain, Cat People (1942), Val Lewton’s The Bagheeta, that’s crazy, The Body Snatcher (1945), I Walked With A Zombie (1943), The Black Bagheela by Bassett Morgan, The Island Of Doctor Moreau, Frankenstein, important and interesting, Extra Credits, Cordwainer Smith, Jerome K. Jerome, The Idler, Vermont, influencing Heinlein, Citizen Of The Galaxy, Stranger In A Strange Land, Virginia Heinlein suggested Heinlein write the Jungle Book except with a boy raised by Martians, H.G. Wells, Charles Stross, Saturn’s Children, a hidden history behind the books were really like, working on something true, working through the ideas, The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, Coraline, fully illustrated, modern kid’s books (also for adults) that are fully illustrated, a tribute, people who dislike Kipling, “it would be a poor sort of world if one were only able to read authors who expressed points of view that one agreed with entirely. It would be a bland sort of world if we could not spend time with people who thought differently, and who saw the world from a different place.”, too problematic, let’s just read this book, do the life story’s of the authors matter?, O. Henry, The Gift Of The Magi, a criminal fraudster, rewarded and moral to be a fiction writer, Roman Polanski, Chinatown (1974), Arthur Conan Doyle, being modest about your claims about being a super-genius, foolishly doubling down on the ridiculous, Theodore Roosevelt, sometimes we’re just stupid about things, Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, fascinated and hopeful, it humanizes them, a troubling trend, don’t watch the news, seeing a whole life, people being thin-skinned, Facebook or Twitter, performative, Logan Paul, famous for nothing, in the 1920s the way these kind of people got attention is they climbed up to the top of a flagpole, reality TV stars, in anticipation of reading The Graveyard Book, A Fine And Private Place by Peter S. Beagle, The Last Unicorn, Lawrence Block, Donald Westlake, written at age 19, in fantasy circles, Julianne Kutzendorf, working from Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven, a hidden history of Science Fiction and Fantasy, Juliane Kunzendorf, a Rudyard Kipling poem entitled M.I., the influences known or unknown, poetry, exploding with connections, giant spiderwebs, Saki aka H.H. Munro, Sredni Vashtar, twisted, is Jesse crazy?, reincarnation, an otter, a little brown servant boy, a very Indian concept, an alternative Kipling, charged by a cow, a hedgehog, Rumer Godden, going native, fraternizing with everybody, common experience and childhood, Anne Of Green Gables, Craftlit, H.H. Munro story entitled The Storyteller,

An aunt is travelling by train with her two nieces and a nephew. The children are inquisitive and mischievous. A bachelor is also travelling in the same compartment. The aunt starts telling a moralistic story, but is unable to satisfy the children’s curiosity. The bachelor butts in and tells a story in which a “good” person ends up being devoured by a wolf, to the children’s delight. The bachelor is amused by the thought that in the future the children will embarrass their guardian by begging to be told “an improper story.”

the aunt is an exemplar of a certain kind of person, the short term, bad governorship, being sensitive to the needs of the people you are in charge of, inverting the aunt’s story, horribly good, what a great story!, this story could have happened, managing children, a teaching story, thinking about yourself as an audience.

The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling

Posted by Jesse Willis