The SFFaudio Podcast #780 – READALONG: Sheba by Jack Higgins

Jesse, Will Emmons, Alex (Pulpcovers), and Jonathan Weichsel talk about Sheba by Jack Higgins

Talked about on today’s show:
Seven Pillars To Hell, Sheba, 1994, 1963, all the seven pillars into the desert, we see one we hear about two, the temple had pillars, the trail into the desert, temple to Ishtar, Astarte, Venus, a play on Seven Pillars Of Wisdom by T.E. Lawrence, pre-show jokes, hated this book, garbage, void, fluffy, airport lit, threads would get picked up and nothing would happen, Spanish fascists, Nazis, Hitler is busy inading Poland, part of the rewrite, a great script for a movie, Cain, get better again, cartoon Nazis trying to blow up the Suez Canal, worse and worse, judging it fairly harshly, a good novelization of Raiders Of The Lost Ark, fairly similar, events, Nazi base in the desert, blow up the plane, girl gets captured, trapped in the temple, no supernatural objects, suffered because of that, no metaphysical content, Jonathan is right about that, Casablanca (1942), stock characters, Sidney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre, all explained by airport fiction, kinda forgetable, Alastair MacLean but second tier, something lacking, discontinuities, a time jump, fast forwarded through the video, new destination, scrub forward, not Harry Potter style scene based fiction, in the rewrite, every man in the world loves an airplane, show yours, choose only one airplane?, how stupid the premise is, you could blow up a gate, block ships, fucked things up, a secret city base in the desert, I can revise my book, Raiders is kind of a trick, decieved, novelty, perfect execution, tricked us into liking it by being perfect, sequels, shows us the error of our mistake, all stories like this, they have to be like this or they’re the Quentin Tarantino let’s kill Hitler movie, paid attention to the history, biblbical historical supernatural element, blame too big of government, “top men”, Warehouse 13, back to the warehouse, in The Crystal Skull, a way to solve a problem, we can’t have the power of god in the hands of the allies, all the stuff is tricks, superhero villians, so WWII can happen, Lex Luthor has to exist, doomed to fail, stated discontinuities, WWII movies/books, this is not Eye Of The Needle, The Eagle Has Landed, the opposite of tricks, no craft, [Ken Follett], zone off, Will feels that, by the time the plane exploded, ready for the book to be over, just over 6 hours, 4 hours, 2 hour movie, heard how big Raiders was, Storm Island, Donald Sutherland, hates the British, Robert Duvall, the Valkyrie historical figure, the guy with the eyepatch, Jesse’s brain doesn’t work very well, Michael Caine plays a Nazi, kidnap Churchill, whole team is dead, nice Nazis accidently killed a little girl, this kind of genre, something that could have happened, has to fail, a much worse direction, Inglourious Basterds, made a promise of genre, we know that didn’t happen, a wrecking of genre, Overlord (2018), American paratroopers, a black NCO commanding white enlisted, executive order 9981, we changed history, the officer scene, super-compelling, see Hitler machine gunned very well, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, saving a historical film actress, the day Jesus was born somebody shot him with a crossbow, post-modernism, breaking the rules, bending genres, being free of the rules, we’re beyond rules, 1900-1960, future obsessed, fuzzy science, high culture vs. pop culture, meaning is important, meaning is relative and open ended, it will say “yes”, who else would be like this?, Cronenberg, is he postmodern?, The Fly remake, Videodrome (1983), this book is not post-modern, the rules of a promise, if you put a rocketship on the cover of you book you’re a liar, those are bad people and bad books, people will buy it, they’re just liars, man on the run, Hitchcock, pretty good, semi-historical figure, attested to in history, blocks of stone from almost the period, her name, she only exists in the bible, outside of the bible, archaeological hints, scientifically, the rocks, stones and statues, we the reader, metaphor in fiction, an incomplete metaphor, why is it called Sheba?, a McGuffin, it doesn’t tie in, who doesn’t like the way it sounds?, political activities of the Kings of Sheba, Yemen, for some reason Jesse knows a little bit about Sheba, where Sheba is, dispute, two areas claim the queendom of Sheba, Somaliland the empty quarter, Jesse’s brain is really good at background work, The Nameless City by H.P. Lovecraft, Iram of the Pillars, enjoyable, unless you’re just fighting the weather, Salim, a corrupt German (or French) archaeologist, especially girls, they have the up the stakes, human trafficking, this whole genre, Clint Eastwood in a Nazi uniform, make a book out of it too, Where Eagles Dare, comes out of literature, airport style fiction, what your grandpa or dad was reading, cowboy hat, range in the title, a horse, it won’t matter, not a classic for the ages, hanging out with Hitler, going into Hitler’s office, the prologue was fun, should add to the resonance, that old poem by Shelley, Ozymandias, Hitler built a temple to himself, white sam browne belts, we can assume the MP-40s, MP-38, not enough Catalina action, the revision was badly done, a 30 year gap, died in 2022, any other historical errors, there are prototypes man, random bedouins, a hare brained scheme, Ritter had showed up in the desert, we like him too much, WWII movies, girls probably don’t like it as much, Guns Of Navarone, Force 10 From Navarone, good actors in it, murky, the plot is terrific, a great read, more like a Jonathan story, is it worth it?, two genres, A Bridge Too Far, The Longest Day, as close as we could ever come to being in Operation Market Garden, actors playing themselves, a huge cast, capture every bridge, one big push, Robert Redford in a canoe, Anthony Hopkins totally outgunned using his umbrella, actually happened, actual airplanes flying into the sky, late 60s, The Dirty Dozen, 1981, The Big Red One, the end of this era, Mark Hamill, Lee Marvin, a series of vignettes, German and Russian, Das Boot, 100 WWII movies that you’ve seen, Ilsa She Wolf Of The SS, Jesus Franco, a Will movie, Spaghetti, exploitation characters, the prologue reflects on this temple that’s gone, makes it better, this book is broken, ahistorical, this temple plot, combining the two, I hate Hitler, let’s see some Nazis, archaeology, not-competent, the Spanish ones, bored because he’s a courier, trying to carry about a plot, a comedic sense, you want them to fail, not that bright, watching this Cain fellow, an interesting story in there, gone back and forth, meet at some point, until they show up and blow up, a weirdly wasted character, learn how to fly a plane, sea-captain, he’s the Mary Sue, a bastard of a book, it doesn’t meld together, motivation, he’s gotta save the girl, simply in it for the money, $6000, the British archaeologist lived, we just get the wife, the Casablanca element, the Humphrey Bogart character, we’ve beat up on this book, a small axe to grand, no rule against cringe, only black character cannot speak, tried to write dialogue with him, a 1970s movie decision, the loyal retainer, he’s Chewbacca, like a dog, the Somali, the Arab, the Greek, the German, endlessly interesting utube channel, drills down on the history the number of SS legions, foreign legions, there’s an American one, Arabic legions, Danish, they’re trying to setup an international system, the communists, the Romans, not just for propagandic purposes, Spanish Nazis, the Greek Nazi, part of the criticism we can all have for this book, him being a very successful market, seems interested in his subject, generally gets things right, just so happens there’s a lot of men out there, do men think about the Roman Empire everyday?, WWII everyday, wish you were here Paul, building civilizations, empire building, standard sorta male mindset, in reaction to/in spite of, Spanish Civil War was the prelude, can’t do anything that matters, Harry Turtledove, getting out of the desert alive, stuff happens, fuel tank being emptied, the plane they crashed, the MP-40s being a little early, technically well done, stories in the corners, blocking the Suez Canal, drop mines, airport lit fiction plots, out of the desert for no reason, an excuse to getting into the dessert, seeing the queen on the wall, big king with a star of David, the guy’s name is Cain, mark of God cain, a killer, smuggler, pilot, ship’s captain, what isn’t he? real, the mythological archetypal American, very El Borak, Robert E. Howard constructs better, sentence by sentence, Kirby O’Donnel, The Fire Of Asshurbanipal, tsk tsk, bad Jesse, a really good audio drama [blue hours], a lot like this story, Bedouins, a forbidden city, death trap, giant jewel, Weird Tales, beautiful cover, a demon bound to the jewel, puts in the sorcery reluctantly, ancient cursed city lost in the desert, The Curse Of The Golden Skull, King Kull, millennia go by, Lemuria, some guy with a beard, a snake came out of the skull, supernaturally in the curse was upon his bones, that story didn’t sell, more of a vignette than anything else, any sorcerer can be killed with steel, a stout blade is a hardy incantation, the best WWII movies, designed to make Jesse mad, The Notebook, The Great Escape, a WWII movie with Bronson, Come And See, Germans rolling in, very biblical movie, number of tanks fielded and trucks burned, adopted by the Nazi, The Imitation Game, all 19 years old Dunkirk, Jojo Rabbit (2019), Scarlett Johansson as a Nazi, Stalingrad, Defiance, Black Book (2006), Soldier of Orange (1977), maybe it’s amazing, Empire Of The Sun, Christian Bale as a baby, The Best Years Of Our Lives (1946), America has changed so much, looks like a comedy, straight drama, William Wyler, Arrested Development, smiling, get weepy, ironic, the hardest years, Patton, Rescuers Down Under, Hardcore, The Last Run (1971), a play, directed by George C. Scott’s sons, gambling addiction, famous son, rented a huge theater, Jesse doesn’t brag enough, Jesse loves old movies, Letters From Iwo Jima, a pendant to Flags Of Our Fathers, The Dirty Dozen, very of its time, Jim Brown, John Cassavetes, much better WWII movies, the scene on the beach, Burt Lancaster having sex with a nice lady on the beach, the meme movie: Downfall, Hitler in the bunker movies, Hitler finds out about x, The Thin Red Line, Terrence Malick, an artsy WWII movie, the actor list, a good cast, a cast of white guys, Nick Nolte, directing the war from the boat, on an artsier scale, Life Is Beautiful, one they would show you in highschool, a good movie, Alex just doesn’t like really sad movies, funny bits, a funny looking guy, fun times in the holocaust, not a lot of laughs in Shindler’s List, Jerry Lewis’ lost clown in the holocaust movie, an offensive concept, [The Producers], Midway (2019), Pearl Harbor (2001), the other Bridge, Dennis Quaid, Randy Quaid, the handsome, Woody Harrelson plays an admiral, 3 hour youtube documentary, Woody Harrelson’s dad was involved in the assassination of JFK, Natural Born Killers, Das Boot, the reboot of Das Boot, in the gym, pretty good, adds in girls, an on shore element, girls working for the Nazis, Dutch them, Grave Of The Fireflies, hanging out with the anime Cirsova guys, older, born in 1978, one anime every 5 years, space western anime, Robotech, Casablanca, its basically a play, where do you think the French went?, technically set during WWII, not a battlefield movie, Quentin Tarantino’s top 11 movies of all time, Sunset Boulevard, dead in a Hollywood lady’s pool, Five Graves To Cairo (1943), five stops in the desert, a British tanker, crawls out of the desert, waitstaff in a hotel, based on a play, actual tanks on screen, Nazis come up with unecssarily complex schemes, it takes Americans to…, Robert Shaw plays a blonde SS panzer, The Battle Of The Bulge, The Bridge On The River Kwai, 1957 movie starring Obi Wan Kenobi, a biopic about the actor, a WWII vet, Pierre Boullet, Saving Private Ryan, a good beach scene, the rest of it is terrible, very solid, a lot of movies have plots, Tom Hanks is ok, non-threatening, Greyhound (2020), based on a C.S. Forester, really nice low stakes, a pattern, Jonathan noticed a pattern, WWII battles, wants to be a movie, shooting, hardware, aircraft, support the invasion of Poland, set before WWII, Raiders is not a WWII movie, one of the plans, keep these guys in prison, death march them, some criteria, fill in the holes somewhere, The Man Who Never Was (1956), homeless man, remade it recently, not a better movie, some up and coming officer with a limp and an eye-patch, same plot as Where Eagles Dare, a double bluff, the plans for D-Day, recapture or kill, spill the beans, if they make computer game levels out of it, Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory, give it away for free, just a multiplayer, The Guns of Navarone (1961) map, Where Eagles Dare, his son said, my dad is really depressed, best WWII movies, high on the list, a lot going on, best WWII movie not on the list, small stakes, not a D-Day movie, get some men off an island, just go around Crete, fixed gun emplacement on a beach, a really good film, tomb raiding book, Easy Go, missed every John Lange book, a lot like Anthony Quinn’s character in Guns Of Navarone, half-greek half-german?, his mother was a whore, before the shore, you never read them, how any of them is relevant to the book except as a title, to tie in as a metaphor, King James, 1 Kings 10, 29 sentences, punctuation, the name of the Lord, prove him with hard questions, the lovely Robert E. Howard language, went back in time, camels and bare spices, when she was come, communed with him, not anything hid from the king, where he told her not, the meat of his table, unto the house of the Lord, no more spirit in him, howbeit, behold the half was not told me, thy wisdom, hear thy wisdom, because the Lord loved Israel forever, an hundred and twenty talents of gold, the navy also of Ophir, almug trees, pillars for the house of the lord, psalteries for singers, all her desire, royal bounty, she and her servants, beside that, in the forest of Lebanon, another archaeological thing we can dig up, she’s just there to show how good Solomon is, inferences, a kingdom in Africa somewhere, Song Of Songs, the two disputes, the pretty part of the Bible, good reading, sexy reading, sexy reading is important, beautiful art, there was good writing in here, bastardized, a thirty year gap, something we’ve seen, King Solomon’s Mines, hokey romance, people shooting at each other, one of the malest books, true story, a very male writer, by and for dudes who watched the History Channel, the WWII channel, The World At War, here’s what’s happening, WWII by tweets, here’s what’s happening in the war, this is what happened, leaving tons of stuff out, Russia invades Poland, leaves out the context, if California invaded Oregon, boats and airplanes, borders that are always moving back and forth, in bed with Hitler, dig into this again, maybe they want to be allies, the Molotov–Ribbentrop pact, hidden pacts, we’re gonna defend France, France, we got your back, start with a sketch, forget about the pejorative part of it, drill down, really crazy details, Hitler’s Bodyguard, Churchill’s Bodyguard, protagonist from a men’s fiction novel, a WWII movie, someone on twitter reviewed it, Paperback Warrior, I’ll read that, response to Dial Of Destiny, it is a fun book, explores a part of the world not a lot of books are set in, Arabia during WWII, searching for Sheba, a Lost City with sentient gorillas, a tomb full of treasure, except for that one necklace, the femme fatale shows up looking for her husband, reinforcing the WWII stereotype, Son Of Kong (1933), giant gorilla movie, not a jewel movie, hold the girl or hold the stones, she doesn’t and she dies, Reading, Short And Deep, a Bros. Grimm story, The Woman In The Wood, tap the tree twice, cup of milk, friends with the bird, hollow tree with a door in it, witch lady in there, go into the back room, a table full of rings, pushes past the witch in the little house, the curse lifted, Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade, this is the cup of a carpenter, lifted straight out of movies, or the Bible, antikythera mechanism, another treasure hunt movie, Donald Pleasence as a Nazi, The Treasure Of The Amazon (1985), Treasure Of The Sierra Madre (1984), Cannibal Holocaust (1980), he’s a lot of fun, topless natives all over the place, exploitation feel, the bag of jewels, just sand, trick em all, gets the jewels at the end, that was kinda messed up, you can just kill somebody, that’s kinda messed up of you, a really cool dude, sounds like a boy movie, based on actual facts that occurred in 1958, Gringo, Bradford Dillman, Marathon Man (1976), Lawrence Olivier, High Risk (1981), Triple Frontier (2019), James Brolin, Lindsay Wagner, Cleavon Little, James Coburn, Ernest Borgnine and Anthony Quinn, drug lord, go to Hawaii and film this movie, good movies that are low rated, Tubi, Midnight Pulp, Shudder, Tubi is owned by Fox, Assault On Precinct 13 (1976), drop everything your doing, Siege (1983), evil presentism, understand, when talking about silent movies, silent films are more work, people don’t like work, half lazy, you’re on an airplane, Thomas Burnett Swann, saying you love farts, Safety Last (1923), The Lost World (1925), that guy’s an athlete, Antonio Banderas, how could you expect a movie from the dawn of movies, 1920, the 1990s is the problem, charismatic, Catherine Zeta Jones, Michael Douglas’ wife, a nice digression, Jesse’s thoughts on what makes a WWII movie, some books are designed to be movies, spec for a movie, the storyboard, why didn’t he just re-release it?, Stephen King, he’s a shitlib now, he had to fix it, he’s not Richard Bachman anymore, The Hunt For Red October, Jack Ryan, TOM CLANCY, dead for 10 years, still an executive producer, Eartha Kitt, Dirk Pitt, fundamentally broken, the girl plot, the promise of blowing up the canal, The Eagle Has Landed, Kelly’s Heroes (1970), 9th novel out of 75, more successful better selling pen-name, a drawer novel, a retelling of Of Mice And Men with a kidnapping, poured shitlib sauce all over it, famously right wing?, both parties are in favour of war, what do you mean when you say right wing, Steinbeck, the distribution of wealth, the ultra wealthy are against the distribution of their wealth, old money vs. new money, JFK to 9/11: Everything Is a Rich Man’s Trick (2014), George Herbert Walker Bush, the head of the CIA, 1963, his middle names, those are the people who run the state, WWI or not, let’s invest in Hitler, Henry Ford, full size painting of Henry Ford, IBM, Hitler used IBM, the Hollerith counting machines, James Tiptree, Shakespeare’s Planet, The Night Land, a lot of wading through a lot of kissing, mostly kissing, pining for kissing, 6 hours and 12 minutes, one is very very genre, one is very very experimental, a long tradition vs. pioneering, fantasy, Heavy Metal magazine, power armour, chainsaw lance, William Hope Hodgson, The House On The Borderland, James M. Cain wrote it, a super-good read, trippin balls, fishing trip in Ireland, a crevasse going into the Earth, assaulted by pigmen, sister is sleeping, his dog turns to dust, Lovecraft before Lovecraft, skulls being boiled, the whole concept of the hero, reject the idea completely, grown, the squeecore, let’s eat food and talk about snappy dialogue, the books that win Hugos, fiction inspired by Joss Whedon, perhaps a little uncharitable here and there, they all have MFAs, go to Clarion and pay the $6000 to be in the union, pal around enough, slip up and say something racist, a real phenomenon, changing your ways, buy a Hugo on ebay, how you gonna stop someone, you could get sued, products you can’t buy on ebay, you can’t buy an oscar, a rocketship, trade her some masters of the universe in the spot where one of her broken Hugos was, Your Haploid Heart, The Werewolf Principle, Project Mastodon, The World That Couldn’t Be, Our Children’s Children, thriving tribes of genderless natives, Gavin Duncan didn’t care, the berries cured mental illness, ten rows of vua, dead friend Gregg Margarite, LibriVox, Hellhounds Of The Cosmos, conflict, internal conflict, peach pie vs. apple pie, just a place and a setting and a story, stories with no conflict, that’s not a story that’s a display, no money for pizza, no problem, The Gift Of The Magi by O. Henry, the pornographic Gift Of The Magi, three wise men show up at the door with a pizza, well after the holidays, original art, who doesn’t like Clifford Simak?, everyone should, the way Douglas Adams, since I was a teenager, the right age for it, doesn’t hold up too well as an adult, get to the fucking point, getting annoyed, flying by the seat of his pants, the concepts are pretty heady, it helps to be young and thinking everything is dull, fun and hilarious, a frictionless surface, old science fiction story, No More Friction [by David H. Keller], Portals Of Tomorrow edited by August Derleth, it feels perfect, can’t stop rubbing it, do a double, Weinbaum is Mr. Sparks, an army psychiatrist, Death By Snu Snu, Weird Tales, psychologically deep, about writing, reality changes, The Hypnoglyph by John Ciardi, how short is it?, page 3 to 15, never ever have to take a show down, the Weinbaum list, had he not died of cancer he’d have been bigger than Heinlein, John Ciardi, actual 54, A Grocery Of Limericks, procastinating projects, Justified, very Elmore Leonard, Raylan, his last book, a cash grab, set in Kentucky, Graham Yost, TV Ontario, a movie family, arcturian space crystal, a cat likes to be stroked, tropism, every surface of the body, innately happy, objects for rubbing, old Chinese medicine, curio stuff, netsuke, chairs irresistible to the buttocks, sexual potency, his last child was born when he was 84, good dreams, the natural tactile organ, it is pleasant, pleasure is absolutely irresistible, I want less than you do, a curious coincidence, poisonous cheroots, do we collect so we can tell yarns, I’ll collect you, a new audience a new opportunity, the humidor, sachets, a terrific story so far, denubian brandy, a pause before the yarn that no story teller can omit, last blast into space, killed the wanderlust, being filthy rich is hardly the worst fate imaginable, an asteroid belt just popping, just an asteroid belt, pure diamond, federation prize money, a hunting implement, a snare, there are queerer things than that in space, a culture was founded on it, you’re not ready to believe, a yarn’s a yarn, that’s what space is, the constant reoccurrance of the incredible, unless you’ve got a prehensile hand and supra-orbital arch, the hand is good for picking things up, examining them, beginning to get ideas, an ungulate couldn’t use a tool in a billion years, that’s the sort of argument that gets hot in space, sidehumans, we didn’t make a report, as if running an inventory, buried in thought, coming up from a caveshaft, over the little polished dimple, the treasure room, what a lovely target I’ve made for a blackmailer, terrans can mate, I seem to be beyond surprise at this point, such lush pickings, still stroking the thing, too sound, reasonably proximate common ancestor, convergent evolution, without a common ancestor, deep space, the polished thing in his hand, to get back to DK-8, the hair and the skin structure, perpetually misty, all tropical, a fur covering, diffuse sunrays, die of suburn, nature always has a trick of trying to deal two cards at once, a tremendously developed tactile sense, their tropisms, it simply cannot stop, down into and over, a tactile science, tool culture, tactile culture, a rigid tribal matriarchy, working up a little voodoo, tactile gratification, they grow incredibly obese, a survival characteristic, such perfect control of their skin surfaces, strangely well proportioned, such hard wood, grainless, a huge seed, something like an avocado nut, extremely hard, then men set them out in the forest, these gadgets take care of all of that, they just can’t stop, the ruling clan of women, the slaughtering compound, his politeness was unfaltering, the men used to have unmanageable spells, hypnotize them, stops thrusting, breeding the life-wish out of the males, hardly enough men left to work the traps, the tribal leaders, new vigorous males, fresh blood for the lifestream, why I came back alone, the only male ever to leave DK-8, never, really, left, it, a puff of smoke, his eyes remained fixed straight ahead, only the fingers of his right hand continued to move, a door swung open, something huge and pale, a very Jonathan story, first sold story Going Native, humans and aliens mating, your cheroot is getting to you, getting over the covid cough, human in a legal sense, no matter how much they look human, anthropologist are busy learning if they can mate, a real challenge, complicated taboos, one species committing genoicide against the other, you like autism, autism in fiction, the OCD, not internal, an external force, The Most Dangerous Game by Richard Connell, August Derleth, the best of 53, Philip K. Dick, Robert Sheckley, Alfred Bester, Margaret St. Clair, Henry James, Anthony Boucher, James Blish, Mildred Clingerman, Clifford D. Simak, every story is a winner, such a good year, in future episodes, Anthony Boucher, a trilogy of novellas, One In Three Hundred by J.T. McIntosh, Earth is going to be destroyed, at least the first one is public domain, the government of the world, now we all gotta go to space, all going to go to Mars, one random dude, the most worthy people, elderly folk has wisdom, Orphans Of The Sky, piloting it from Earth to Mars, they give the rich people the good ships, One Too Many, abusing the comparison, reminds me of Poe, structured like a Poe story, The Cask Of Amontillado, little jokes about it, Behind The Curtain by Francis Stevens, very Poe, very sexual, getting his alien girlfriend a man, not prudish, psycho-sexual, use this piece of wood, a fidget spinner, it saw the future, very autistic, hypnosis is a very 50s thing, reading more David H. Keller, psychological depth, Binding Deluxe, The Little Husbands, a male bookbinders club, they’re all misogynists, of all the men who were mean to me, kinda sexy, Encyclopedia Britannica, one letter of the alphabet is missing, likes to see men tied up, tattoo on his back, turned into books, a subset, always got a wife going on, set in Africa, a forgotten writer, he’s on the second tier, Nictzin Dyalhis, a Weinbaum guy, A Martian Odyssey, a sequel, Worlds Of Weird, The Sapphire Goddess, Slaughter Of the Innocents, Weird Tales stock characters, not written for print, not hearing a strong preference, Sam Moskowitz, The Lotus Eaters, all of Weinbaum’s writing, The Hidden Planet, Donald A. Wollheim, Robert E. Howard, Frank Belknap Long, need short stories, enough time to discuss, The Sea-Thing, Giants In The Sky, really weird, the k is silent, The Horror Expert, The Man With A Thousand Legs, Mississippi Saucer, The Dog-Eared God, The Man From Time, The Man The Martians Made, The Ocean Leech, a sea-vampire story, The Sky Trap, The Timeless Ones, the pulp crew, the Cirsova-sphere, Asimov’s got good short stories, a boy who speaks with badgers, 1975, is this how you identify, getting into Avicenna, Canadian farm, half of Canadian children’s literature, Owls In The Family, My Side Of The Mountain by Jean Craighead George, makes friends with animals, Hatchet by Gary Paulsen, 5 hatchet sequels, very well written for a children’s book, Brian’s Winter, back to the hatchet, hatchet with a girl, live in the forest as an adult, not into pleasing people, decades, centuries into the future, he’s rubbing a clitoris, super-sexual, reflecting back on petting cats?, the surface that’s irresistible to touch, design work, look good feel good, the whole Ikea thing, as cheaply and with as few materials as possible, paper with a thin veneer of plastic, a pile of paper with a plastic coating, the opposite problem, this design school from the late 20th century, nostalgic for comfortable furnitures, 4 hours versus material, those young bladders can go all morning, Jesse will be talking in the background, solved a lot of the world’s problems, Galaxy: 30 Years Of Innovation, good magazine, a shadow of its former self, each story has an introduction by the author, the scene there, all the authors are living in New York, Alfred Bester wrote a story about that, Roman a Clef, recognized himself and was quite offended, Horace Gold is Galaxy magazine, John W. Campbell, nobody is super-mad at Horace Gold, homophobic fascist!, far right wing, too conservative, he’s a fuckin nutter, The Cold Equations, a reactionary old man, people get hung up, Frederik Pohl’s a communist, when you read C.M. Kornbluth, only 7 pages, she’s never going to be public domain, killed her husband and had no kids, murder suicide, suicide pact, probably definitely a lesbian, we’re both CIA, my husband says its okay, hangs up the phone, holding hands and a gun, Cost Of Living, the first one slid by, that boy of his, would he mature and take his place in society?, always kidding, he’d committed suicide, it would have been great to be a rocket pilot, a different ending, that pisses off author, that doesn’t piss off squeecore readers, the later one is probably Sheckley’s, bow out, the introduction, Jesse loves Sheckley, he’s my fave, this guy was an important science fiction writer, Scott Miller, narrator, Watchbird, autonomous drones that will zap people who are thinking about murder, a pre-crime thing, I’m not going to commit a crime, that’s why you’re dead, I don’t understand why we need civil liberties at all, the public domain version, not today, Philip K. Dick stories, a father a son in a house, future gadgets, some of his novels are meandering, highly influential to Douglas Adams, Mindswap, one damned thing after another, Candide by Voltaire, it came up, the etymology of Candide’s girlfriend, pussyhinge, giant aliens, Micromegas, novella, a long time, low on the battery.

Seven Pillars To Hell by Hugh Marlow

Sheba by Jack Higgins

Sheba By Jack Higgins

Sheba by Jack Higgins

Sheba by Jack Higgins

The Hypnoglph by John Ciardi

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The SFFaudio Podcast #772 – READALONG: A Meeting With Medusa by Arthur C. Clarke

The SFFaudio PodcastJesse, Scott Danielson, and Terence Blake talk about A Meeting With Medusa by Arthur C. Clarke

Talked about on today’s show:
under heavy pressure, Playboy, December 1971, the audiobook, superfamous, The Star and Nine Billion Names Of God, A Fall Of Moondust, Dolphin Island, a middle school library, an introduction to hard science fiction, all about characters in relationships, a mystery involved, a disaster movie, what he’s really good at, the twist at the end, sprinkled the hints, the paintings in Playboy, a hot air balloon, multiple gases, a giant medusa, aka a jellyfish, Jupiter, on Earth, the story this is most similar to by Arthur Conan Doyle, the Sherlock Holmes Professor Challenger guy, The Horror Of The Heights, pilots go up and disappear, crushed, giant jellyfish in the upper atmosphere story, Queen Elizabeth IV, an abrupt end, the sequel inside of it, awesome opening scene, imagery and everything, the shocking end of that section, really good, among the best Scott has ever read of Clarke’s, the structure hurts it, the beautiful writing, a bit of symbolism, an idea punch that hits you out of science fiction and into philosophy, he’s doing propaganda, he don’t cheat at all, is there an Arthur C. Clarke story where the knowledge of the solar system at the time of writing is ignored to tell an idea, he won’t write a story unless it’s plausible, petty concerns of being a human, deep time and cosmic depths, what does that make you, the Olaf Stapledon thing, characters, the guy in here, important to tell the story, solid, now he’s very solid, concentric circles of sense of wonder, a little bit in the future, almost cinematic action, some of the phrases are ambiguous, going on another mission, lightning reflexes, reconstructed him, after they reconstructed me, we’re just not fast enough, tai chi teacher, not explicit, his pilot’s reflexes, he doesn’t say this is the murderer, when they put me together again, the surgeons made some improvements, this is one of them, set more than 100 years in the future, treaty on first contact, the line that blew me away, the Mao Tse Tung in the American museum, what?, Americans got over their hatred of red China and think Mao is a hero as the rightly should?, the San Diego naval museum, war trophy, do you want to make friends with the Russians?, name an aircraft carrier after Stalin, or Ho Chi Mihn, named after people now, destroyers are named after cities, how do you embrace other countries?, incorporate their heroes, adopting Greek stuff, they’re ours now, we’re the inheritors of the Romans and the Greeks, it shook me to my core, what a good writer he is, it’s a good one, another ship that he named the Kon-Tiki, one man across the biggest sea, the prime directive in this, amongst six or more other phrases, Asimov, encounters with the American Indians and Africa, three laws, how to be in the world, don’t lie, what’s going to make you happy, start with that, it causes problems, fuck you is not a lie, be polite?, what would the basis of the prime directive, the categorical imperative, don’t use others as a means to an end, a negative, let them get used to you, not the Star Trek one, they break it all the time for purposes of plot, there’s something behind it, those are how you should act as a person, just replace the word robot with human, a human must consider other except where injure, my feelings are hurt, fuck your feelings, a person must protect his or her own existence, interesting application, we’re not robots, methods and plans of dealing with other people, taking stuff coming out of philosophy, parallel evolution, Asimov’s fourth law, the zeroth law, technically fourth, The Evitable Conflict, 1950, Chairman Mao, Nixon goes to China, detente, because Sri Lanka (or India) had to play a role, a tornado touched down, doesn’t cheat at all, an airship book, more of a hot air balloon than anything else, hot hydrogen of course, thinking through the scenario, the twist at the end that brings it up, this guy’s immortal?, a ship of Theseus scenario, rolls away at a calm 30 km per hour, 7 feet tall, to give him self-confidence, feeling separate from humanity, the ambassador between the ones made of carbon and the ones made of silicon, the aliens, radio dish heads, are they intelligent, I’m convinced that Medusa knew your blindspot, hunting, the intelligent species must be the predator species, a feint, a lightning bolt, why not, up for grabs, the aimed at manta fell like stone, Jupiter is a lightning bolt god, when we see him at the end, he’s turned to silicon, identified with his metallic aspect, Medusified, plummeting manta, I’ve studied a lot of jellyfish, Juliana and Luke on the Science Fiction Book Review Podcast, octopus books, a Ray Nayler book, spiders, eight-legged non-human creatures, the length of the story that’s required to do the job, an hour and half, somewhere in between, two parts, a view of humanity, superchimps/simps, clothes, slaves, brought out of mothballs, a POV of Earth from someone not interested in it, be a pioneer, no one could go, a super-pioneer, why this book exists, the opposite of the moonbus book, trying to conform, people want shitty romance cheating on your wife disaster relatable, I’m more like this guy, Arthur C. Clarke’s Mysterious World, almost none of it is that interesting, his brain level, he’s just not interested in the normal things people are interested in, exploring the ocean, so interesting down there, Jacques Cousteau, collecting notes on hailing frogs, not the normal science fiction writer, maybe Olaf Stapledon, his personal life, not interested in slow pitch, Arthur C. Clarke goes to hell, develop a deep philosophy to deal with it, Howard Falcon, like HAL, Jesse I’m afraid that’s not possible, HAL has conflicting orders, The Sentinel, wow!, full of philosophical things, sense of wonder things, it’s all earned, if this then that, Criminolly, garbaugust, worldbuilding, there’s no distinction between science fiction and fantasy right now, cool ideas about how the world works, tried a few more, testing the theory, wanting to be engaged, turning into Jesse, why we have to be so enjoying about terms, The Kaiju Preservation Society, infodumps about made up facts, could you explore it?, honest, solid, he doesn’t cheat, he’s standing on what he knows, realities that might be interesting explored, he’s not a cheater, when Larry Niven cheats it’s so he can get to another thing, twists something, a third of the episodes, are there any Star Trek episodes that are hard SF, the closest they come is The Galileo Seven, a rip off of The Cold Equations, Spock gambles, there’s a percentage chance there’s a passing alien spaceship, why did I read this story, have their cake and eat it too, angry fights, be hard about these things, you inhuman monster, Spock’s being very logical, fan service episodes, not memorable episodes, social soft science, what should our relationships be, the good stuff, people watched a lot of television and movies with spaceships in it, wouldn’t it be cool if, aliens, almost none, Childhood’s End, even The Star, doing soft science fiction, why I don’t like science fiction and fantasy books, fantasy is a whole other thing, show me where Ted Chiang cheats, an interesting thought, The Merchant And The Alchemist’s Gate, Howard Falcon was unloveable, a novel called The Medusa Chronicles by Alastair Reynolds and Stephen Baxter, a sequel to The Time Machine, Terry Pratchett, the childhood of Howard Falcon, when Star Trek goes back and explains the early life of Kirk and Spock, a fallacy involved, for what purpose, what does it matter?, unless there’s an idea there, why it’s shit, this episode we find out Kirk has a brother, why?, a massacre on some planet, just to raise the stakes, to make the Holocaust personal, to do a technical job, a Chekov’s gun on the wall, Spock having eyelids, to press the reset button, a technical requirement of a show where it’s not serialized, Vulcan nerve pinch, the ears are not what make Mr. Spock Mr. Spock, an emotional being controlling his emotions, him being a spawning salmon Theodore Sturgeon episode (Amok Time), every time they bring up a Vulcan, there’s exceptions, response video, Michael K. Vaughn, he has good taste, a good youtuber, people say why don’t you, here’s a recommendation, seem to be following Luke Burrage’s podcast, a big thing in France, amongst the aficionados, how intelligent it is, boring, The Mountain And The Sea, quite into philosophy, coming at it from a philosophical side, setting the scene before anything noticeably strange happened, how long it is, judging books by their cover and how long they are, bad cover, does it need to be this long, poingant and mind expanding, the UK does better covers than the USA, the UK edition, RayNaler.net, translated into French, thought it was brilliant, June 2023, Cthulhu, Japanese style, maybe this book is necessary, another cover with more tentacles, almost doesn’t ever talk about tentacles, cosmic horror = tentacles, Antarctica, the melting and stuff, a giant frozen 17 tall penguin, Tekeli-li!, philosophies of writing, Robert E. Howard is writing for money, very successful as a pulp writers, 4 times as big, Lovecraft doesn’t write stories that don’t need to be written, this is what is selling right now, even when he’s doing very pulpy stuff, things that are not needed for the story (to make the cover), a born storyteller, writing story, they like stories too, they don’t have the chops, people who won’t write for the commercial market, antagonistic to commercialism, Clarke is a bit of both, very elderly collaborations, sullying his legacy, The Light Of Other Days, very disenchanted with Arthur C. Clarke, and Isaac Asimov, Silverberg, cash-ins, a reader need not be subject to the whims of the author, because your friend wrote the book, fuck you, go back to basic principles, Clarke has a purity in him at times, Bob Shaw, an expansion, Light of Other Days, the New York Times lie list, Talisman by Peter Straub and Stephen King, Black House, shouldn’t be trying or able, necessary compared to Asimov/Silverberg, Clarke/Baxter, Olaf Stapledon wrote this, he didn’t write for cash, the unique fluke, King’s psychology, King has a limiter or a governor, he doesn’t use it for evil (or for good), hurts his own work, a fantasist of childhood and American life, a fantasy writer, we just don’t think of him that way, “fantasy realm”, The Goblin Emperor book, secondary world fiction, worldbuilding is mostly bad, silly worldbuilding, 2001: A Space Odyssey, psychedelic experience, intelligent worldbuilding, to fill pages, fall apart in a mush, a speculative component, the sensory impact of the trip, highly informed, standing on what is know and speculating, if there was life it would be in this zone, that kaiju book of Scalzi’s, wonder about your purpose, none of this is helping me in my life, what happens during the game, processing a magazine, sitting too long, certain number of hours, that’s fun, but it ain’t a novel, it ain’t good science fiction, what would our guy from youtube think about Philip K. Dick, make a magic system work, things are happening because they have to, if time started going backwards, still in the Roman Empire, spins up a world in order to explore it (not to fill pages), his novels are all worse than his short stories, just better, his short stories are better than that book (The Man In The High Castle), a children’s book, Galactic Pot-Healer, work and being out of work, a frontier where people are challenged to find meaningful work, that gunfight was really cool, some people act like robots, unemotional or mean, is sex with co-workers cool?, very fun and very rich, he didn’t need a setting for some characters, if your story doesn’t have idea at its core it’s not science fiction, imagine with ideas, live with ideas, a Philip K. Dick essay, Olaf Stapledon writes big long thick books that are science fiction but not novels, that’s interesting, how do you do that, a history of the last and first men, like reading a whole bunch of Clarke stories, unique in fiction, poor guy, there’s a lot not to enjoy, How To Build A Universe That Doesn’t Fall Apart Two Days Later, until you toss it across the room, a good theory of fantasy, fantasy is pretty big, the hardest of the hard, uploading and downloading your brain, it’s not, Ringworld, a whole bunch of gimmes, smart aliens, an aggressive species, they generate a D&D party, the Larry Niven character, just an excuse, a gravitational feeling thing, complete bullshit book, everything is fiction, it would just fall apart, 100% cheater and it works because he has an idea at the core and everything else is to get to that idea, he cheats in every possible way, Clarke has a very different philosophy, even in A Fall Of Moondust, not his best book, a bunch of boring characters, people get lead astray, super-good, a lot of Silverberg lately, Tor Doubles, read about a third of half of each of those books, a Silverberg novella, especially with his novels, he’s a contemplative dude, he’s sorta artsy and literary, he likes old books, Heart Of Darkness on another planet, elephants for the economy, sex on the brain, human relationships, the worldbuilding is to get to the transcendent point, The Book Of Skulls, being a good writer helps, Passengers, what is he famous for?, made Majipoor maybe?, Lord Valentine’s Castle, Nightwings, doesn’t have a killer book, big stature for a guy who doesn’t have a killer book, Neuromancer by William Gibson, rather than the fixup, his standalone short stories are really good, Phases Of The Moon by Isaac Asimov, a writing machine, wrote for money, still alive and not licensing his name out, 2010, now that he’s not poor, not getting his pension padded, good story, good writer, Arthur C. Clarke, he knows what to do, Farnham’s Freehold, he’s gonna rant about it, it’s not as bad as you think, Paul, oh my god, at the time, Westlake, revving back up, The Colorado Kid illustrated edition, Justified: City Primeval, there are character in it, Elmore Leonard short story, Tommy Patrick Ryan, some random guy on the internet, through Eric, 11th ever published story, readability through the fucking roof, so much characterization, got worse at the end, No Man’s Land by John Buchan, early evening, a reasonable hour of the evening, save the hunger to be angrier, approaching it satisfied, Houston, Houston, Do You Read?, Ace Double, a subpodcast of only Tor Doubles, we started with the first one, The Screwfly Solution, The Girl Who Was Plugged In, Run For The Stars by Harlan Ellison, savage, a juvenile delinquent in space, clairvoyant ability, very Harlan Ellison, A Boy And His Dog, Eye For Eye by Orson Scott Card, The Last Castle by Jack Vance, The Dragon Masters, I love the lengthy, Ill Met In Lankhmar, Vintage Season, The Sword Of Rhiannon, Ursula K. Le Guin, Kate Wilhelm, Kim Stanley Robinson short stuff, they don’t list the table of contents, The Ugly Little Boy, Edmond Hamilton, Screwtop, Enemy Mine, Hardfought by Greg Bear, an idea man, he shoulve had a badge that said “idea man”, The Blind Geometer, Fritz Leiber, Universe by Robert A. Heinlein, fantasy, Damon Knight, Icehenge, Press Enter by John Varley, Death Of Doctor Island also The Island Of Doctor Death, Karen Haber, Home Is The Hangman by Roger Zelazny, Wheels Of If, Gene Wolfe, The Book Of The Short Sun, Conjure Wife is on LibriVox, Ben Tucker is good, a five hour book, unleash hell, we got this in our back podcast, shownoting, back in the day, Sartor Resartus by Thomas Carlyle, Naxos, the torch of science, a metabook, 1831 novels, so many good ones, Scottish essayist, Fraser’s Magazine, purports to be a commentary, Godborn Devilsdung, a book review of that book, transcendentalist, German idealism, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, Immanuel Kant, there are things in themselves, things as we perceive them, the laws of our mind, ways round, suppressing different premises, this book sounds really good, in a funny way, Johnathan Swift, Tristam Shandy, Laurence Sterne, founding text and serious organizing study of clothing, fashion theory, sartorial ambitions, clearly a book we both need to read, my all time favourite book, this is one of the books that makes life worth living, only seeing through clothes can we understand life, not composted, a half-mad saint, 320 pages, in the PDF, the torch of science, not the smallest cranny or doghole can remain unilluminated, what is he famous for?, some sort of hero worship, a precursor to the superman, the great providential men who make history, Hayy Ibn Yaqdhan by Ibn Tufail, like Tarzan, most translated, 1,000 Nights, the dream one, very solid, very Borgesian, Borges never wrote a collab book to make money, Frank Herbert son, Tom Clancy ghost author to write Borges books, a funny tweet thread, Hobbits and wizards, good morning as in fuck off, Justin fucked every Canadian for 20 more fucking years, he’s bought and paid for and corrupt as fuck, persist, not a big damn hero, very bad man, make some coffee.

Playboy, December 1971 - A Meeting With Medusa by Arthur C. Clarke

Playboy, December 1971 - A Meeting With Medusa by Arthur C. Clarke

Playboy, December 1971 - A Meeting With Medusa by Arthur C. Clarke

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The SFFaudio Podcast #770 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: Progeny by Philip K. Dick

The SFFaudio Podcast

The SFFaudio Podcast #770 – Progeny by Philip K. Dick, read by Mike Vendetti. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the book (45 minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants in the discussion include Jesse, Paul Weimer, Evan Lampe, Mike Vendetti, Terence Blake, and Jonathan Weichsel

Talked about on today’s show:
IF Worlds Of Science Fiction, November 1954, we’re bringing it back, Worlds Of Science Fiction, IF, it’s IFfy, the tagline, a tier below, a tier above, James L. Quinn, early in IF’s run, 3rd year, Evan Lampe’s podcast, the Philip K. Dick review website, John Taylor Gatto State Controlled Consciousness, schools created to create utopian visions, close to Philip K. Dick’s perspective, the story about the autistic kid, not really autistic, a nurture story, the thesis of the story, raised by robots, kids in it is very unusual in actual science fiction, 9 at the end, Theodore Sturgeon, a good handful, Tony And The Beetles, The Father Thing, comes up every time, something that happened to Philip K. Dick, the hospital, the mental institution, typing on his keyboard, you know what we need is more science fiction stories about kids adopted by robots, Nanny, menacing, how menacing this story is, body horror, sweat and smells of the body, the aftermath of the meeting with the father, The Last Of The Masters, hairy sweaty man, girls boobs, almost connect that to AI, newspaper article through AI, a Promethean moment, Ed is left out of it, he doesn’t participate, channeling Eric Rabkin, the robot doctor, a sandwich, in fairy tales, a science fictional fairy tale, sharing food means you love that person, the squirrel accepts his food, Pete’s doctor/boss/trainer, I’ll eat at the cafeteria, pop the question: will you come and be my son, I don’t like to buy in the diner they skin you, six hundred employees, this is menacing, sentences that go unfinished, training to become a bio-chemist, a messiah for the robots, a go-between, what does the smell of his father remind him of, laboratory animals, a contemptible smell, I can’t place it, just like when he was a baby, Dr. Bish, the automatic heating system clicked on for the night, the smell as the experimental animals, the promising young boy, the boy smiled, awkward and humane, a secret private smile of complete understanding, evil emotions, you’re son’s deformed!, my god, what does it mean?, what about that first wife, a secret that he’s telling us over and over again, a secret Philip K. Dick child?, a waveshot of his head, talking about himself?, sociologically going on, there’s no manual telling you what to do, Dr. Spock, let the kid cry themself to sleep, the worst thing anybody’s ever done to Americans, ADD, needs a lobotomy, icepick lobotomy, one of the Kennedy children became a vegetable, you have to trust the doctor, towards that, that exchange, did he try and pick up the child, a circumcision or something, feel the weight of the child in his arms, sanitary, antiseptic, oedipal complex, and today, sex studies from the 50s, Kinsey studies, living back there, oh my god I’m a homosexual, I had no idea, lies and wishfulfilment, sweeps the nation as a fad, weird instiutional problems, you’ll be happier when you join the institution and follow the rules, Dick likes twists and layering of twists, a systematic distortion, growing up with the robots and imbibing their ideology, all the paperwork, the consent forms, what does see mean exactly?, the laws, math, age, why I was 19, sneaking into the rocket facilities, I was twice your age when this happens, more tired and sweating and balding than he was before, didn’t have a kid at this point, Beyond The Door, a wife cheating on her husband with a cuckoo clock and a boyfriend, whose Pete?, Mrs. Peters, this name, Ed Loyce, Ed Doyle, figures in his life, Pete might be him, the father became extremely busy, coming back, here I am I’m your dad, his dad lived in DC, a serious character flaw, when he’s 18, comes back on the delivery day, expects to have a say, he doesn’t get that, writing to his mom, boarding school, mom, send my pills, non-nervous pills, full of anxieties, nervous breakdown in high school, he takes their answers seriously, is that really true?, he writes about it, the robot is an institution, institutions replace parents, the doctor is not a human, fleshy cover over its arms, two robot taxi drivers, a strapping late model robot, they’re replacing Ed, the doctor adopts the child, talking about himself, these amazing psychological conditions, this unfeeling monster, the child didn’t need to be touched, these things are in the air, 1928, the abortion truck story, children hiding in thornbushes, The Crawlers, The Pre-Persons, the father agrees to go into the abortion truck with him, maths, 1974, the ability to master algebra was the test for having a soul, animal soul, authority says this, what happens if that’s true?, the neuroses that I have, served by robots in a cafeteria, being raised in a boarding school, mandated to join this army, a really bad consequence, keeping the baby with you at all times, Jesse is very talky, primarily about institutions, how institutions sell themselves, what was best for the kid, she trusted the institutions, being inhuman by not wanting to bring the baby to her breast and smell it, she’s not sad about it, I was chatting with the doctor, she’s smoking, people aren’t sad sending their kid off to public school, the entire ideology of the system, a sexual thing, smoking with the doctor, fantasy sex with the doctor, the post coital cigarette, a cuckolding going on, push psychoanalysis a tiny little bit, the biological becomes an institutional complex, 1986, your kid has ADD, your kid needs amphetamines, there’s a biological thing, the calf comes out of the cow, literally happening, how much culture and institutions erode, she is a monster because of it, we’re all monsters, a more primitive part, Dr. Bish what is this weird white liquid running out of my breasts?, he’s an idiot, what a moron, the internet is full of misinformation, an institute, Los Angeles Central Hospital, late for the birth, infodump, we don’t touch our son, when do we get him?, the waveform says he’s going there, another institution, once he’s fully grown up, his brain is no longer plastic, when he’s an adult, molded into what the institute wants, the mom is out of the picture, they’re divorced, Ed Doyle’s alternative, the frontier theme that Evan so rightly picked up on, no squirrels, Pete’s dad’s job is the plumbing, his only job is to supply the sperm, Star Trek, high end jobs, build and maintain those ships and those systems, in the end you still need infantry, pushed away his wife, away all the time on the frontier, a traveling salesman, as a result Janet leaves him, something really important, the gendered nature of labour saving technology, Philip Dick doesn’t get this, Evan’s Philip K. Dick readthrough, hostile to washing machines, microwave, refrigerator, who raises kids?, mostly womens work, the bullshit of raising kids, making the lunch everyday, stroll in from alpha centauri, the wife is making the rational choice, shitwork, Dick really has this problem, after a certain point in the story, son come with me, this is going to be our business, there’s a lot of things that need doing out there, out beyond Prox, nature, self-fulfillment, won’t even accept his sandwich, extrovert with the nerdy kid son, eat hamburgers, sitting at home, making plans to destroy humanity, make them less smelly and more docile, Sales Pitch, commuting through space, replacing body parts, have your colon replaced with a plastic tube, no more sweatglands, make everything antiseptic, just make sure that children are clean at all times, the runny nose, he needs to go on a boat and learn the ropes, the mom’s instinct and the dad’s instinct, when the answer is the institution they’re both wrong, giving up a lot of power to the institutions, Mildred Clingerman story, an automated kitchen, about 7 Ray Bradbury stories, Catharine Beecher, bastion of their power, use science and knowledge and education to rationalize the domestic sphere, a viewpoint, a little glowing breast, spray on glowing, she’s glowing because she just gave birth, baby needs milk, not enough baby formula, baby formula is bad for kids, you could use a breast pump, giant reliance on artificial milk, convenient, maybe its because you’re at work, factory or office or school raising other people’s children, bad marriage, the menace is unstated, maybe the Oedipus complex is worth it, not just corporations, government regulated facility at the very least, public private partnership, a legal person, not a caring person, not capable of caring, that’s what his waveform says, he’s going to be a rocket jockey, the son doesn’t even understand the question, he smiles, you think desire has anything to do with it, the robots and the man all have emotions, maybe he’s not the best boss, as close to lying he gets, designed to be sympathetic towards Ed, propaganday, why do we trust this institution, a photo of his plastic brain, bio-chemistry, they’re going to fuck around with humans, the alternative is the queen living West Texas planet, emphasizing the cleanness, unpolluted, smoking, drinks a brandy-frappe, what’s best of the child, she’s been reading all the books, Gayelord Hauser for nutrition, parenting books, how they sell of these things to parents, no shopping, no clubs, no social life, the optimistic part of the story, Earth is going to Hell, Dick was an optimist, Hello, Doc!, the event has happened, a top-level robot, it had fooled him, Dr. Bish appeared plump and well-fed, is the robot married, diamond-tie clasp, simulated manicured nails, a pinstriped shirt, white collar vs. blue collar, just the baby daddy, rushed in from the airport, have you seen a squirrel before?, leaned on one way, we can’t trust this, trusting it is the bad thing, we agreed to this, they were intimate at some point, to determine the gender of the child, he’s only gone six months, natural sex, a lady with boobs so he fell in love with her, she’s a monster because she trusts the institutions, yes I am, H.P. Lovecraft, that amazing transformation thing, regular successful businessman, not hairy, the robots becoming too human, Isaac Asimov’s Let’s Get Together, a critical mass of robots, Herbert Goldstone’s Virtuoso, learns to play the piano, music is supposed to be hard, somethings shouldn’t be automated, AI art, two robot taxi drivers are acting like robots, literally human beings who are obeying instructions, turning them into robotic people, ROTC, failed the first day, twirl your rifles, get a haircut, his robot stories are so different, fixed it, could have easily been a chapter in The Humanoids by Jack Williamson, serialized vs. novel, earth vs. an alien planet, expanded novel version is really good, an answer to any objection, a really important concept, any word you don’t know the meaning of your are subject, bleeding under your dura, doctor I know exactly how we fix this, subjecting ourselves to their ideologies, sometimes that’s a good thing, look both ways before you cross the street, a hard concept to get across, when we read these stories, wow that’s really powerful, but why?, escape valve, the place we can run off to, frontiers exist, a perceived option, go west young man, where do Americans run off to?, Taiwan, to Vietnam, not an option, Miss Columbia, propaganda, plant a flag, government giving you an outlet, free real estate, shaped politics for most of American history, pick up your stakes and go, everyone moved to Saskatchewan for free land, then everyone moved to Vancouver for jobs, the dust-bowl, the dirty 30s, 3 million people were displaced, we don’t have the language to describe it, people moving out of California to Texas or Florida, internal movement, region in this, State Controlled Consciousness, every utopian movement, Sunday school, propitiate your ideology, Dr. 2G-Y Bish, bishop, kids put into religious orders, designed to break up the family, outsourced to religion, keeping doctrine, interesting idea, not very many characters, Janet, Ed, a big jump, takes him out into the country, Los Angeles, go back to the city, a general experience, Evan’s generation, the first generation to go to college, those Thanksgivings, those times back are a little weird, at least four or five years to orient back to the working class culture, academic sorts, we gotta get this fence fixed, inspiring and interesting stuff, intellectual stimulation, trying to communicate that, it doesn’t translate very well, rebalance how you talk to people, most people don’t read books, unless youre constantly building up, Jack Williamson, Gilles Deleuze, cows, chickens, horse, chicken business, cow business, the second dimension, initiated into a more bourgeois culture, the double gap, so rich, fairly obscure Philip K. Dick story, following the 9 years, Paul sings the classics, Cat’s in the cradle and the cradle’s on fire?, kill his father and marry his mother, it doesn’t come from the Greeks, Sigmund Freud, is it true?, not exactly, recapitulate the relationships you are trained in, animals training other animals, interacting with other humans, any of the seven times I’ve tried, maybe that’s not true, a structure, he likes older women, where is the libido?, the attitude of Doctor Bish, looking at Peter the baby with a look that was greedy, in Anti-Oedipus, the bureaucrat caresses the forms, Anti-Oedipus by Félix Guattari and Gilles Deleuze, bottom of page 71, creasing the edges with his nail, plugged his desire into rules and regulations and forms, go to the police, see if there’s a detective on duty, it gives them something to do, he’s not like Mr. Spock, sinister and evil and aloof, like Data, Data had curiosity, satire, embodiment of authority, an evil twin (Lore), psychoanalyze Star Trek, the Lore Data stuff, gave him a twitch, Lore made Data have a twitch, there’s a twitch here, a libidinal twitch, different educational institutions, Hampshire College, Fordham University, unstructured to structured Jesuit university, post-modern to classicist language, a whole different language, small economically depressed town where half the stores are closed, an aversion, they were hit with books at school, lame TV too, a reality TV show was cool, marriage counselor reality TV show, what is it on cable?, therapy, if that was L.A., a level beneath, an aversion to reading books, the struggle, Peter Camenzind by Herman Hesse, goes back home, his rural town was better, a spiritual transformation, stained with sweat, page 74, he brought out his pipe and tobacco, a big sulfur match, murmured, this is a good pipe, 25 years ago, do the math, only about twice as old as you, a WWI veteran, WWII guy, at a certain point in life every man starts smoking a pipe, filling and lighting a pipe, old fashioned stuff, that ritual, sucking on a pipe, casting smoke out of their nose, a little bit interested, lost in his reverie, if he was a little more skillful they could’ve connected, he had the right instinct, what makes it a tragedy, when dads fuck off, there’s a problem, wife, institution, capitalism, we could work together, how long it is, almost nothing happens, a walk, a hospital scene, episodes over 9 years, backfill, infodumping, 3 scenes, permission, fill out these forms, the ride in the car and the walk, the last scene, off with Doctor Bish and Peter, the key to Peter’s reactions, emotional, that’s interesting that you think we can connect, oof, anthropological look at the father from the son’s POV, distancing, broken sentence, when you will…, quite right, the backstory talking, bumming around town, outside school rightly, sneaking into the rocket launching yards, hopped over to Mars, a hasher, Ganymede was all sewed up tight, space freighter, worked his way out to Proxima, workaway, I found what I wanted, swelling with pride, little retail and service place, everybody needs a plumber, a good job, the best blue collar job, the pay is very good, when the water starts flooding you need a plumber, building communities, he sounds very free, like a rolling stone, not an appealing life to someone who’s a part of the institution, she doesn’t leave the earth, she likes being under the system, you could go off, there’s fear involved, there’s the comfort of the institution, institutions can’t love you, fill out your forms, ivy coloured walls, drifters, cafeterias, you have money, an efficiency you don’t get at home, living in China, didn’t eat dinner, new job, cafeteria lunch, where do you wanna eat?, doesn’t the food just kind of appear?, where to eat and what to make, drops from your mind really quick, elementary schools in France?, fancy lunches?, 20 years in a highshcool, 2 hours or longer to come back home, sandwich, all sorts of good things in it, presence of the outside inside the institution, “I’m not reduced to the institution, I have my sandwich”, taco Tuesday, people get excited about the rotation, a crazy thing, homemade food, ketchup classified as a vegetable, school lunches program, the healthy food pyramid we just made up, at the top is a greedy corporation, like am institutionalized restaurant, weird hot things, hot lunch and cold lunch, 2 cafeterias in the same school, Cold Lunch Paul, bologna sandwiches, hot lunch for free, against the rules, a person who hasn’t been completely institutionalized, get you hooked on the hot lunch, back to bologna sandwiches, like the place, baloney, 70 liters of chili, more efficiency, the prices start creeping up, adulterating the materials that go into the pot, corruption, let’s have a daycare, a hired person, paying money vs. taking turns, we can lower the quality of the care here, just not loved, all in this little 46 minute story, chat GPT, it can do my homework, I can fire everybody, charge subscriptions, hire somebody to do this, you still hire dishwashers for restaurants, an open version of chat GPT, answer emails from other robots, an efficiency there, students are into chat GPT, grunt garbage work, pedagogical value of repetition, they’d much rather cheat, painting class, if they’re into it they’ll do it, most students don’t want to be essayists, kids doing their homework, punishment, if you get low grades you need more attention from the government forms, chat GPT can be really educational, dialogue with it a lot, The Three-Body Problem, Chinese TV series of 30 episodes, suggestions and prompts, analysis, no that’s not what I want, good ideas, some creativity sparks, Rossignol, better and better, The Ash Grove, makes you cry if you let it, makes children emotional, as a corrective, analyze Philip K. Dick’s story, Progeny, a search engine that’s weak, that’s not enough, you have to work for 20-30 minutes, write some John Adams Thomas Jefferson boy love romance, oh yes you’re right, you overestimate, most teachers can’t even get the assignment clear, make sure you have a period at the end of all your sentences, formatting problems, what this is perfect for, autobiography or memoir, just answer the question, a sophisticated text prediction, good grammar, less important for students, the facts don’t matter that much, formatting is really important, this is a lie, how they get good grades, cheating the system, a good solution to a bad problem, easier for the prisoners, abolish the prisons, new ways to punish students, make other kids do their homework, what chat GPT’s revolution, read this paragraph and reorder them, take out things you don’t like, living in an affluent area, I’m a governess, there’s a scary man, young Tommy is very bright, essay about thermodynamics, describing some of Jesse’s job, same advantage that rich people’s job, it doesn’t help them, how to understand great poetry, a bunch of assignments that are due, parents hire a ghostwriter to right a novel, ivy league school, Rebecca Black’s song Friday, I like sitting in the front seat sometime, super-well produced, something to make their kid feel like a superstar, chat GPT same advantage as the rich kids, we’re pretty conclusive, Pirates Of Venus, north shore of Minnesota, overseas, NSA work, top secret, Evan Lampe is gonna step up, Farnham’s Freehold, 12th – 23rd, Sailing To Byzantium by Robert Silverberg, solved, feeds and resources, podcast schedule, the music under it, crazy, a youtube thing, people don’t know, people discover that audiobooks because of youtube, excited for them, any sign of a ghost is excitement, it’s youtube vs. books, Arthur C. Clarke, past The Colorado Kid, Alex from Pulpcovers was censored, an appeal, after careful review…, sooo careful, a lady might not have any pants on, jealous losers on twitter, White Trash, HOE REPAIR, just exposure, what Jesse likes about Jonathan (he’s read a whole bunch of books Jesse hasn’t read), the guy from Switzerland who had nice handwriting, an autobiography of a character’s soul, a German genre, fake autobiography, Bohemian Europe in the 1890s, talking to farmers, dude, common for some people, fake and phony and putting on airs about intelligent they are, literary circles, don’t read anything past 10 years ago, Scalzi has replaced Heinlein, they say they believe that, keep current, you don’t have time to read both, most of everything was crap, harder to determine today, hasn’t withstood the test of time yet, debating how to pronounce Weichsel in 100 years, first hit rap group, recorded their songs here, hit song, fun catchy song, walking around the town, they saw the sign, that’s it, 50 years from now, this town has not accomplished achievement, absolutely amazing, on the ferry, CTV News, CNN for Canada, tell Americans, the shitty Justin Trudeau government, an extra bunch of money to poors, they want to get reelected, full blown Social Credit, a tax rebate, 19.8% commercial space empty, 50% is much more common in a small town, all for the sake of posterity, chat GPT teachers marking chat GPT homework, dead town, it’s just awful, hang out at the bus stop, hang out at the convenience story, kipple from Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?, all the non-losers have left for the off-world, the world of the book, same world as Progeny, everybody is replaced by robots, squirrels are dying, institutional pollution, fill the ocean, thesis proven, same setting, same ideas, not literally true, working the same mine, working the same ideas, Nick And The Glimmung, Galactic Pot-Healer, a stepping stone to get to that other idea, androids, robots, three weeks from now, a really good one, Sheba by Jack Higgins, in response to people not liking Dial Of Destiny, the legendary temple of Sheba, put me down, Indiana Jones tanking is kinda bullshit, poor box office, in what period of time, one of the most expensive movies ever made, we didn’t need the first one either, we wanted it, now we don’t want them so much, two versions of The Warriors (1979), available as an audiobook, an excuse to watch it, comic book inserts, less real and gritty, Ship Of Ishtar by A. Merritt, work to do, editing this anthology, for secret operations, bunch of authors, substack, cool public domain stuff, Moon Tomb, the moon and death, Misha Burnett needs to promote better, some salty interesting points on twitter, great cover art, he’s problematic, jealous?, when you get famous enough people become jealous, Poe was a third rate writer, why did they say that?, because its true?, shit all over Lovecraft, lob a grenade and leave and close the door behind them, Edgar Allan Poe, who’s a better poet from the United States?, start making your list now, Annabelle Lee is popular and it’s good, The Song Of Hiawatha by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Mark Twain’s parody of The Raven, Bugs Bunny, controversial, that’s Heinlein in extremis, alcoholic mother and the lawyer father, bridge party, people are not asking for an adaption, see everybody explode, skinny dipping, the young black kid, see you on twitter.

Progeny by Philip K. Dick

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The SFFaudio Podcast #768 – READALONG: Scratch One by Michael Crichton

The SFFaudio PodcastJesse, Paul Weimer, and Terence Blake talk about Scratch One by Michael Crichton

Talked about on today’s show:
from Nice, our agent on the Cote D’aZur, 1967, early, 2nd published novel, maybe Cora mentioned this before, Lange means long, Dick means fat, John means dick, this book is very familiar, a heist book in Spain, the Spanish equivalent, Costa Brava, generic titles, The Venom Business, Grave Descend, Odds On, knock off holiday resort, not just a fact (also part of the plot), crossing over the bridge, casino hotel resort, something under the bridge, descends the steep cliff, scrambling down and back up, a surprise: flowers, planting a bomb, this actually happened, France and or Spain, sometimes with a girl sometimes without, vividly describes the descent, Egypt, drowned, the Nile, a similar scene in that book, mucking about down near Aswan, just like Richard Upton Pickman, release the Terence, the Negresco Hotel, Promenade Anglais, Avenue Victor Hugo, Rue Biscarra, Avenue Du La Victoire, renamed, after a famous mayor, Cannes, Monaco, not while the race is happening, successfully describes both, warm semi-tropical Mediterranean, seen it in movies, To Catch A Thief (1955), North By Northwest (1959), Roger bumbles, Carr, bumbling his way, add-in the international intrigue of Charade (1963) is public domain, Never Say Never Again (1983), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968), Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (1988), also turns out to be a conwoman, a lot of fun, A Good Year (2006), Grace Kelly, Stirling Moss, the restaurant, name drops, by magic romantic resonance, that’s enough, we don’t need to see her haircut, accidental spy books, Michael Crichton’s inspirations are paperbacks (not movies), a searchable thing, an early Westlake, the nephew novels, a case of mistaken identity, gets the mob after him, mistaken identity, there are jokes, it would be funny, attempted murder, Jennings, the nasty murders, this is not a joke, finds everything funny, Alice In Wonderland, hideous torture, that’s the disconnect, characters who die fast, we meet some baddies, what the plot, an arms shipment, are they supplying the PLO?, a disconnect, the comedic situation, the cops, the consulate, it will be good to let him run around for a while, very North By Northwest, God Save The Mark, Somebody Owes Me Money, a tip on a horse, makes book, run around New York avoiding the cops and the actual murderer, a girl who betrays him, standard girl stuff, the narrator’s voice, Australian accent, hard to identify, strong vs. weak Australian accents, definitely Australian, Crocodile Dundee Australia, Australia is not a monolith, Maine and Texas are the same accent, most people are not going to physically violence Jesse, preferring the read, him doing a female voice, Australian female, quite good, romancing, that scene is on the cover of the Hard Case Crime, she’s working for the bad guys, a dancer’s wages, it has to be a good book, extraneous character, he writes some scenes as if he’s fleshing things out, characters we don’t want to be in the book, false main characters, we don’t know that he’s the hero, the minds of other characters, the book is mal-plotted, obliging me to have lots of willing suspension of disbelief, what’s stopping this from being a science fiction book, Ringworld, Dirk Gently, synchronicity and coincidence, everything is tied together, still working on his stuff, novels are very different scene by scene, the opening killings are a lot like a James Bond opening, Smert Shpionam, Money For Nothing by Donald E. Westlake, you have now been activated, a sleeper agent, a case of mistaken identity, it’s a comedy but not funny, horrible torture scenes, our main character is a lawyer, he’s playing the bad guy in this book, he’s way dumber than us, you should tell them exactly what happened, no I am not, the Hugo Award winning fanzine, he’s a bit of an asshole, a gripe against this book, enjoyed, three quick hours, a light read, very light, the way Paul’s mind thinks, possibly going off a cliff, what does he look like?, especially the women, he’s amazingly handsome, he looks like a spy except to know what spies look like, he’s strong, he’s the reader, a paperback designed to be a paperback, Binary, a good book a pretty good TV movie, more things of his own, not a bad book at all, the two paperback scenes, 20 kilos exactly, getting his stuff weighed, the amount was less, he could have sworn his suitcase wasn’t that heavy, airplane reader, light and amusing of no consequence, reviewing their own book, chapter 10, a key scene, she was wearing almost nothing, her body was breathtaking, a few strands of blonde hair, A.C., that’s on the cover of the book, they go by Cannes, it’s not a book about movies, it’s a book about books, Grave Descend, literary based, a James Bond stand-in, the villain has a library, romancing each other, too literal, the gravedigger the whole scene, Thomas Mann, 10 sentences a day, Balzac, furiously writing, Wolfe, dropping finished pages into a wastebasket, Poe who was underrated, (not third rate), Our Opinions Are Correct, Larry Rivers, a nothing, Charles de Gaulle’s memoirs, was he president at the time of this story?, 1959-1969, an intellectual match, a high luck score, agency, a little fake, they need him for that?, ok, maybe, malformed, how to put together a great book, light and fluffy, a floated bid for Nice, where the French live?, a city to live in, where the elderly French come to finish their days, dry and warm, a big tourist city in Spring and Summer, the events, the Cannes Film Festival, the Monaco Grand Prix, near Italy, the coast just adjacent, cigarettes and wine, still using Francs, everybody was Euroing, Donald Trump’s yacht was there, how they gonna catch this guy? too many ways out, there’s no way to catch this guy, when he’s on this journey, drawn from, all lifted, places he went line up, things that happened, poolside lifestyle, in some rich person’s house, his father was a senator, he’s there for a governor to buy a house, talks about the library, selling the house, another place selling to an American, you can’t sell the library, the library is priceless, individual books, thesis: this is really about books, books of this period were often adapted to film, a Westlake novel that was to be a script for a James Bond movie, movies don’t get made, a spy book set in Hong Kong, Westlake wrote a lot lot lot of books, Killing Time is public domain, Brothers Keepers, a monks book, something wrong with the estate, an unusual choice for a lazy day on the beach, the opposite to the paperbacks at the airport, a literary book you have to underline and meditate, she is smarter than he is but doesn’t hold it over his head, he did one deduction, the short swarthy man that came to the hotel and gave him the ring, could that have been Jennings’ mechanic, a leap that I didn’t see coming, the mechanic disappearing, the associates, Algerian, the Italian guy, a library scene, you need not praise him in my presence, the maintenance of this house which I love, money will by the respect, a Maserati or a Bentley, some of my best friends are gangsters, Carr nodded politely, smokes, drinks, many of them must be crooks, dishonesty is their profession, laughs, nods politely, the library remains with the villa, just another rivera villa, Dickens, the Cruickshank illustrations, an interesting line, a phony sales pitch, that guy’s trying to get out, time to yourself, time to kill, time to read, the governor is very busy, he will eventually settle, you feel tired, still in the lead, still at the top, any man who does not do it is a fool, a propensity for saltiness, backstory, what is his price, what is yours?, why he’s in France to begin with, The Woman In Black by Susan Hill, the setup for Dracula, Jonathan Harker, buys an abbey, accumulates a bunch of other people with him, Victorian era, a lawyer agent for a rich person, haunted ghost house, an agent for a foreign buyer, not to reveal identity to randos, the wrong kind of agent, people are trying to kill him or figure out if he needs to be killed, a James Bond scene, shark tank, affable villain, Dr. No, just send sexy lady, the knife sharpening scene, there’s your To Catch A Thief, here’s your keys, the roof being down is part of the plot, agent for a governor, make it look like an accident, not fucking up constantly, they’ve got this Citroën’s axel, gearheading stuff, she’s a double agent, he’s mute, Find Your Fate, A View To A Kill, you are James Bond Secret Agent, a kid’s role playing game book, if you choose wrongly, what more plot is happening, ways to die, other characters with interesting things to say, the protagonist is so, a male heterosexual reader, taking it to Korea, Choose Your Own Adventure, You Are A Shark, Paul read a lot of these, illustrations, people go crazy there, The Curse Of Batterslea Hall, visit your English cousin, fantasy elements, a related phenomena, an ebook author, people think they’re inventing audiobooks, people think they’re inventing audio dramas, I’ll invent this thing, after a few years, nobody actually wants these things, get an audiobook then they put music underneath it, and then they add in sound effects, he lit the lighter, combine the audio of somebody reading the story with a layer of music and layer of randomly place sound effects, people who’ve never listened to an audiobook before, how BBC did it in the 1960s, a reading of a book, audio dramas are performances, a guy reading a book like he’s angry, when parents are sold on the idea of children reading a story about themselves, your daughter in the main role, leave the name blank, gas station keychains, all the common names of people, it has my name on it, a girl who rides a dolphin, kids are able to relate to other people, everything being about me, correct Carr, Carr got in the car, Parker parked the car, Parker left the car on 15th avenue, designed to be humorous, this book doesn’t really work on a humour level, at the airport, all these sides waiting for the same guy, something special about the way he conducts himself, dry humour, he’s literally dumb, he doesn’t say things, the stuff on the roof all fails, he doesn’t die, the chase scene, goes to the farmhouse and makes that phone call, close in on being resolved, the whole Monaco scene, the promise of the ending, go back to America and be married, the trope, she’s smarter than he is, he’s sexy, a good job he’s really not worthy of, ne’er do well does well, Kevin J. Anderson and L. Ron Hubbard’s Ai! Pedrito! When Intelligence Goes Wrong, body double, based on real life, when he was in the Navy, supposedly mistaken for this guy who looks like him, not a great novel, for eternity, he’s fine, about 20 times the word scalpel turns up, medical stuff even from Carr, he can’t help it, medical facts, Le Scalpel estate, the whole building was constructed by glass and metal, occasional use of bricks, tile roofs, in the fight with the guy with the scalpel, you don’t throw scalpels, stick your guts into your mouth to test your own intestines, tonally confused, the villain is much harsher than our bumbling dumb viewpoint character is capable of handling, in a regular role playing game, in this we have no options, things happening to him, playing arcade games on the ferry, a sidescrolling game like Defender, you’re a spaceship, a demo showing what the game was like, the control would respond to your inputs, I don’t have any quarters, the phenomenon of an amazing book, this matches exactly where it was going to go, the demo takes over, this illusion of control, what we think of as engagement, there is no difference, a fascinating phenomenon, disconnects, blithering idiot, a doofus, unable to communicate, a VR pornography, POV, has a camera on his face, the camera goes in every direction, look at the tv or something, looking at the furniture, what piece of furniture that is, a really great novel engages you in such a way, the experience of reading and the experience of experiencing it, slightly different moves, King’s Quest style story, watching someone play King’s Quest, engaging, getting read for sleep, streaming excitement, let other people have a turn playing, Hardcore Henry (2015), a first person action movie, a camera with two arms, the Doom (2005) movie, with the Rock (Dwayne Johnson), fan service, Strange Days (1995), somewhere near the bottom of John Langes, the one set in Egypt is the best Easy Go, Binary, Grave Descend, , where the title comes from, its called out in the book, from WWII, doodled furiously, scratch one nice confused American, the work of the Scalpel, well written, Battle Of The Coral Sea, American propaganda propaganding the domestics, during the Battle Of The Bulge, my general askes you to surrender, “Nuts!”, famous scene, Heroes In Hell, propaganda phrases, the Japanese navy, scratch one flat top, the phrase gets stuck, we have both fired machineguns, went to Harvard to escape the draft, Harvard law school, scratch it out, double meaning, scratch an American doofus and underneath you’ll find a hero, saves the day, lets the air out of his tires, not a man of action exactly, Cary Grant?, alcohol for breakfast, wine at lunch, sociologically accurate, easy girls fantasy, French girls are easier, less inhibited than north Americans, if you can’t find a girl on the Riviera, found a wife in Paris, the part about his dad, the distinguished senator, a business expense, for as long as it takes, four months, they’re just trying to get him out from underfoot, don’t just do work, getting to the other things, got along famously, struck it off instantly, fast friends, slightly debauched with a cherubic face, satyr-like, The Famous Teddy Z, becoming the agent for a big movie star, know all the ropes, John Cryer, satyric, the governor appreciated that, weirdly bonding, like to drink, chapter 2, a childish pudgy face, chapter 11, you know you look like a satyr, looks like Pan, Buck Rogers, a penis with goatlegs, the devil with a penis, a lot of truth of what writing was happening, he knew rich people, for your quote, a suitable replacement, people on vacation are looking for that, going into the Casino, gambling, wanting to lose money, short term thinking, a pleasure out of that, elderly people loving bingo or slot machine, pass the time between sleeps, choppin wood all day, dotting or pulling an arm or pressing a button, dopamine hit, how could somebody act that way, the alcoholism after WWII, drinking problems away, a large phase that people go through, not offered alcohol everytime, keep yourself avoiding, characters who are older than he is, observing his elders, grows up with the phrase, a generational thing, propaganda phrase, collateral damage, the first gulf war with Schwarzkopf, public domain, Schwarzenegger movie, laterally how things were produced, get a phrase, you know that disney movie that was a cartoon from 10 years ago?, it’s live action now, went to Egypt, Zero Cool, finish the set, the John Lange list:

Binary
Scratch One
Zero Cool
Easy Go
Grave Descend
Drug Of Choice
Odds On
The Venom Business

a bodyguard to a friend, Harvard rich kid, nightmare family, evil people, The Last Tomb, eight?, American radiologist, Angela Locke, a Spanish beach, Alhambra, darkest catacombs, a secret lost for centuries, a dark haired beauty with a huge problem, a desperate fight for survival, the audio drama, if you look closely, the Hard Case Crime, she’s reading Grave Descend, a pleasure to podcast, meta, mise en abyme, Mad magazine, the lady in the boat, very exciting, how Jesse gets his jollies, what’s the heat like?, warmer than usual, going for a walk, public garden, doing tai chi, practicing tai chi everyday, better than bingo, a different idea of chance, kills the hours between sleeps, jiu jitsu, Musk challenged Zuckerberg to a fight, colour commentary, an age difference, more like chess, find a way to backdown, he likes fun, very disciplined about it, the Pompey and Sulla, private armies, it doesn’t fit, a coup in russia?, the Wagner group, private mercenary groups, personal combat, very Weird, fight this out in meatspace, good dad, horrible evil, Bill Gates, a generational thing, Steve Jobs, Indian mysticism, ashram, Beatles generation, peripherally amused, what was tai chi’s high point?, big in Asia, seemed distant, Paul does yoga, you want to do something, wants to have cows, gets into cattle, martial applications, picking up steam, Emily In Paris, kids like it, a revisiting of the culture (a little bit), fun French stereotype characters, ideas and scenes, helps alot, filmed in Los Angeles, House, M.D., Bryan Singer is in trouble for sex things, sexual harassments, not politically correct, he’s a weird annoying character, Sherlock Holmes with medical stuff, we have to break into the people’s houses to look for toxins, if they needed to really badly, a fantasy of medical diagnostics, American murder shows, fantasies of how murders are investigated, everybody gets an MRI, that’s only for riche people, the vigilante fantasy, stupid bureaucratic things get in the way, full body irradiation, lupus, prednisone, ivermectin, Wilson’s disease, when reading Sherlock Holmes, doesn’t play fair, Agatha Christie is more fair, stares off in to space, remove somebody’s pituitary gland, you’re an idiot, formulaic and fun, special set, they don’t go outside much, the geography and climate of New Jersey, filming in the actual place flavours the writing, daughter, son, moved to Melbourne, something silly you can watch, a soap opera style type show, You, a serial killer who runs a bookstore, a romantic comedy where he stalks girls, based on a book, no although yes, you’re not upset when he murders people, Schwarzenegger’s Fubar, Citadel, very immoral TV shows now, justifying torture and violence, cartoons, a strange phenomenon, a sequel to the James Cameron movie True Lies, cheating on him with a used car salesman, generic Arab terrorists with a nuke, super competent, Jamie Lee Curtis, the same character kind, his daughter is in the CIA and he didn’t know, not well written, True Lies is also a television show, on network television, the guy from Game Of Thrones, sorta Philip K. Dick premise, memory wiped, Silo, Wool by Hugh Howey, when everybody was excited about Wool, didn’t care much anymore, a duty to read the book, Graham Yost, Terence is not one who necessarily executes his duty, conversations with elderly people, a retirement place, not something really intellecutal, Tulsa King, retired superhero, oui, yes, Jeff Bezos some money (Canadian servers), ratings on prime, IMDB is not reliable (except for older things), it deserves it, a forumal, it goes on from 8 years, 8.7 for House, M.D., Star Trek TNG went 7 seasons, the follow up to Justified, City Primeval, the 3rd season of Star Trek Picard, Terence didn’t see the good part, those movies were not good, not interesting, because Worf came back, fan service good is never good, that’s the best stuff, 30 years ago, time machine, cryogenic chamber, 1987, a holiday residence, we’d done everything that we could, doing all these other things, France at that time just wasn’t into science fiction, talking to students about science fiction series, car racing is very dangerous, the James Bond stand-in figure, flipping cars, a hard-top, pre-WWI pilots, after her first crash she never flew again, just fuckin dangerous, small planes, if you’re trying to race them, the water police, that guy’s dead, that was common, tinkering in the garage working on your motorcar, dirt bike racing, the special hospital for broken necks, that’s how you become a quad: drive quads, mountain biking, the opposite of bjj, out in nature, extreme canoeing, kayaking, at least as good an experience, the Sunshine Coast, a ferry ride away, fjords, inlets, the skookumchuk narrows, fast good ocean, a tide in or a tide out, a giant peninsula, to ride the currents, surfing for kayakers, you wear a helmet, smashed up real good, surfing but more dangerous, skiing, injuries are slower to heal, the risk of injury goes up and up, fun/fast, dangerous, expensive, things were cheaper, lift ticket, cross country-skiing, a way to kill time between sleeps: a retired person’s thing, the side projects of people’s activities, Sunday morning for Jesse, church time, why you going to church, really into politics, civically engaged, highest percentage of atheist, a powerful lobby, list of countries by irreligion, Afghanistan, Czec Republic, North Korea, New Zealand, France 28%, Canada, Australia, 28.6 percent, 16.4 USA, synagogue goers, heavy activity, 3.1% Israel, the problem with Jews, they don’t have to practice, belief in god, a cultural practice, the theory of god, he’s in the book, how to read the book, forming the question will help determined what answers you get, China, by population data, 91% for China, Australia 69%, China is full of atheists, saying India is full of atheist, total atheists, Chinese new year, scaring away ghosts, Japan, Shinto temples, government sponsorship for maintenance, same is true for France, Ireland, U.K., theoretically catholic, theoretically protests, Stephen Fry, atheist pastors, a masking mandate, Daniel Dennett, smartguy, a priest with his fingers crossed behind his back, unbelief among the clergy, begin starry eyed, Santa Claus, way smarter than Sam Harris, like a cartoon of a smart guy, he thinks he is a smart guy, a beef over something, emotional shit, he’s not good at logic, he uses a lot of words, cultivate ignorance in writing, think about what these words mean, that’s the exact explanation, consciousness is the center of narrative gravity, when you get into the brain, doing Phineas Gage stuff with big rods, a continuous sort of experience with reality we think, where is the center of gravity on a teapot, nothing inside the teapot has changed, shot in the head, part of your personality changes, if you remove too much, parts can be removed, Descartes theory, the reason I don’t cut off my finger, it’ll hurt, all those cells don’t want to die, battlefield triage, a person with a missing language, self is the center of narrative gravity, its fiction, another analogy, a fictional character in literature, did Sherlock Holmes have a mole on his left shoulder blade?, there was a truth to the matter, neither true nor false, you have failed to understand, neutrinos, why other people’s theories are wrong, a theory that works, the part of us that gives us I did this for this reason, what our dilemma is, when a book is rubbing us wrong, right to bring this up, what does this guy look like, he has no appearance, describing the main character is usually bad, what does Odysseus look like, Starship Troopers tricks you, a person of colour, exactly exactly exactly, why do stories work or why stories don’t work, Luke Burrage [The Science Fiction Book Review Podcast], gone down the drain, a lot of modern books, something has changed, they’re not science fiction, a weird subset of science fiction, anti-intellectual, not interested in the intellectual part of science fiction, the structure of books, outguess the author, guesses and inferences, not a key theme, Agatha Christie, letting it flow, Jesse writes a ton, 6 sentence stories, amazing, fascinated by his own dreams, almost all fiction is unsalable (including some that is sold), book series, the things that people are obsessed with reading and writing about, will they or won’t they, the romance that happens in this book, no investment in it, isn’t it interesting he’s made the girl an intellectual, sexy, a dancer, car shocks, can quote Shakespeare, opinions on Thomas Mann, and be a girl, too much, you can get all that with money, if she really was like that, like the Amish, make it more plausible, silly, how sexist Paul would think Jesse just was, Buckaroo Banzai, neurosurgeon, physicist, test-pilot, rock star, some actors like to play music, Doc Savage is Buckaroo Banzai without the comedy, supposed to be profound, no matter where you go, there you are, shallowly profound, what is the sound of one hand clapping?, take it as a deep thing, a comedy of a deep thing, a comedy, dream response, analysis of The Road Warrior (Mad Max II), Tina Turner, it’s the best one in a way, Mad Max I is an art film action film, Jungian psychology, dream response, black and white, characters being mirrors and shadows of each other, dressed like animals, claws and spikes, the fight sequences, an oil monopoly is the good guy, white football pads vs. black football pads, Max has one football pad, the outsider, he has no identity, the camera swoops in, we enter the vehicle with Max, Max is left behind, very solid analysis, everybody has violence within them, a symbol, when we enter civil society, a lot of people like to pretend, making a mistake, James Tiptree’s Houston, Houston, Do You Read?, extract, Her Smoke Rose Up Forever, the way people read it, downloaded, a hundred page book, One Light Hour, pretty good, Rossignol, Nightingale, The Screwfly Solution, everyone has aggression in them, take stuff away, its not the essence of men, the essence of a can of sardines, Jesse is afraid of male and female bears, afraid of tigers, tigers eat meat and I am made of meat, men can prey on women, using violence for moral purposes, just download it again, from the mouse, 20 files, Love Is The Plan And The Plan Is Death, a lady who wrote like a smart person, is she the best?, this is very difficult, she’s a good antidote, Ursula K. Le Guin, politically correct, The Dispossessed, The Word For World Is Forest, humans come out as the badguys, it’s Avatar (2009), Poul Anderson’s The Queen OF Air And Darkness, we’ve got prejudices and they have prejudices too, The Left Hand Of Darkness and The Lathe Of Heaven, its fun, she’s playing what if, the 2 film versions, real science fiction, another duty Terence has: Always Coming Home, the strongest strike against Le Guin, hoighty toights think she’s the shit, Octavia Butler, Margaret Atwood is feted by idiots, really good, Silverberg is very solid, better science fiction writers than Silverberg, interested in the hard or soft things, native ability, always in phase with the 1960s and the 1970s, her beauty is fading, people are mad Tiptree killed her husband, not a strike against her, a strike in her favour, too traumatizing to talk about or consider, you’re babies, grow up, put on your big girl pants, these are traumatized people they need to be sheltered, let the injury heal then work to make the injured injury stronger, they’ve never actually had trauma, verbally mean to them, making fun of rape survivors, heard about a rape survivor, their theory, trauma in society, what the government is saying we should be worried about are fictional creations, the narrative is not written from their experience, social influencers, the Yellow Peril is something that was manufactured, ginned up, reflected in popular media, Skull Face, The Insidious Doctor Fu Manchu, Fu Manchu is the hero, putting down this evil genius, the side I would be on, the War On Terror, sound and fury, a war that had been happening that people had been ignorant of, 24, always some threat, COVID, turns out that wasn’t really a thing, another duty, the Russians identify with the orcs, the Elves are Harvard educated, The Last Ring Bearer by Kirill Eskov, we should do a pirate audiobook of that, a symbolic Euro, maybe Archive.org, an amazing number of bootleg audiobooks on YouTube, the official Alien movie adaptation by Alan Dean Foster, published in paperback and never thought of again, The Terminator (novelization), a perfect film, sction science fiction oriented, it’s like a theorem, the perfection of a beautiful theorem, so well thought through, the Champs Elysee, lucky Terence, the budget, what is this?, seems a little short, the NAFO, NATO trolls, troll dog in fatigues, anybody who questions the Ukraine War, a tendency, pro-Ukraine people calling Russians orcs, the dumber side of science fiction fandom (pretty much all of science fiction fandom), orcs are black people, doing the Eloi properly, dumb and pretty, The Time Machine by H.G. Wells, September is okay, Australia in December, Tip-tree, do you read me?, poly-valent, NASA stuff, do you read?, parody of SF fandom (amongst other things), save it for the podcast, already intrigued, Heads Of Cerberus by Francis Stevens, strict with the definition, amongst Jesse’s favourite SFF writers, sloppy and crunchy, amazing concept, a phial, pretty and stupid, but do they have boobs?, pre-pubescent, they’re supposed to be children, Dante?, set in Philadelphia, two burglars, the opener disappears, I’ve killed them, Ulythia, a spider woman there, a weaver of webs, mystical shit, a sphinx over a temple entrance, we’re out of time, a staging area to another reality, Philadelphia 2118, a 1984 style dystopia, their name is either a number or a job title, Prettiest, Wittiest, Strongest, governance of the city, contests, if you fail the contest or challenge you’re thrown into a spiked pit, this future place, cut-off from the rest of the United States, what to do with them?, the game and the story, challenge for prettiest, a fourth guy, Mr. Justice is the cop, not a comedy but very comedic, like a Philip K. Dick novel but better put together, super-innovative, two Mondays from now, LibriVox, cleaned up sound, a super brain in her head, you can tell if you read enough if a book was written by a man or a woman, I saw she had a boob, her hands are not big and veiny, check the hand sizes, secondary sexual characteristics, fingernails, how much attention has been paid to the fingernails, Black House by Stephen King and Peter Straub, influenced by Zelazny’s Amber series, a sequel, parallel realities, Evan likes Stephen King, we exhausted Bachman, 20 hours, Straub died recently, 26 fucking hours, duty books, Progeny by Philip K. Dick, Pirates Of Venus by Edgar Rice Burroughs, 1st books, A Meeting With Medusa by Arthur C. Clarke, another Tor Double, in Playboy, a hot air balloon in orbit of Saturn?, everybody’s favourite: Farnham’s Freehold, he’s fun to argue with, No Man’s Land by John Buchan, planning three months ahead, duty!, Paul: you could take a break, Jesse, your center of narrative gravity says, pumping iron, too focused on image of the body, works for the brain, if you’re living in Ancient Athens, Socrates: you’re looking fat, people doesn’t like Socrates, Plato was a wrestler, footsoldiers, cowboys in the distance, learning to throw spears and steal rifles, they’re not discus throwers, what makes them famous?, what makes them good?, stories on the grape vine, stories that require attention, God Save The Mark is more fun, time travel, amazing theme, the secret hobby horse of Westlake is insurance, talking about insurance, hedging your bets all the time, is the insurance company fucking with you?, what makes things continue to function, David Foster Wallace, taxation, not interesting, a central thing we’re trained not to think about, if I don’t buy anything I can’t be taxed, tax rebate, in British Columbia and Canada, HST, GST, PST, harmonize it!, compared to the states, Justin is horrible, fucking terrible things, generally incompetent, not completely corrupt, negotiating these sales taxes, same as VAT, an 80s thing, we know its going to hurt everybody, luxury tax, the theoretical amount of tax they paid, fuel and food, a relatively good life, without working many many hours, inherited money, mortgage payments for 25 years, under COVID, Biden promised a $2000 cheque, never given it, student loans and all the other things, a standard flat amount for everybody, a statistical anomaly, $2000 a month for not working, condo crisis as usual, you don’t have that business anymore, a net negative for most, lose their jobs, doing podcasts, the difference between the two, something in France, up to a level being able to pay 80%, unemployment benefits, normally more stringent, that formula is interesting, most people were getting less, that flat number, cop still has to go to work, if you lost any work, the universalness of it, the province did other things, crown corporations, BC Hydro, automotive insurance, an actual attempt to lessen the damage, keeping track of it, amazing, right?, fairly well when somewhat interested, the fact that they can do good things is amazing, 1pm, Terence’s wife has gone to Paris for a week, this is good for me, I won’t eat, can’t stop it, might as well allow it, Jesse got that from Will, a post-Jungian, James Hillman, we’re made of stories, we’re made of images, Carl Jung, Jimmy Dore, the reason Jesse hates Michio Kaku, somebody’s got your shadow, there’s nothing shadowy about them, people who don’t call him on his shit, Evan or Paul get upset at people, there’s nothing upseting there, team based, not liking Jordan Peterson, said to be anti-trans vs. anti-trans pronouns, he’s dumb, he does say interesting things, psychological stuff, biblical stuff, basic, whatever he says the opposite is true, he’s a dad for a lot of men with not deads, not that many smart people in the media, John Vervaeke, the Meaning Crisis, charge money for their courses, religious people who nod in that direction, when Jordan Peterson talks about Marxism, probably just ignorant, Slavoj Žižek / Jordan Peterson debate, Peterson didn’t chicken out, talked around everything, a judo thing, he didn’t know what to say, The Communist Manifesto, intellectual flourishing, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Cirsova, Marx starved his own children, he was fucking poor, Victorian workhouses, he’s seeing it all around him, he was preaching about what was being practiced upon him, What!?, most people let it slide, this guy is my brain, end up like Sam Harris, Sam Harris didn’t care how many dead children are in Hunter Biden’s basement, a unique threat, mass emiseration, truth can be gamed, narrative control, largely true for most people, Letter To A Christian Nation, sparky and spitty, Žižek’s thesis, old hat, superseded by Gilles Deleuze, he became good, the roots of what he later elaborated, lots of stuff is useable, trans and woke ideologies, he can get away with it, current events, Benjamin Studebaker, the last American election, Cambridge Oxford same fucking place, annoying in two ways: smart and young, how’d you get so smart and so young, The Lack podcast, Political Science 101, pirate Jesse the side2s, its good to do, there are good ideas, listen to them a lot, Political Science 101 podcast, Nina Power, the three of them write little essays, French cinema, independent movies, a more intellectual Science Fiction Book Review Podcast (but for movies), the price of the book, thinking about his audience, paperback is probably good for most people, a very good sign, the opposite is Robert J. Sawyer, competing with my new book, he was a science fiction writer, turned his hand to trying to make a living by writing trilogies, on twitter in full length, the fundamental problem of what’s going on in the United States, right about everything, TV adblocker version, Lord Enoch, rando talking heads, that guy is a real intellectual on TV, just teeth and dresses and smiles and vague acquaintance with some of the issues, good public intellectuals online, philosopher repairman: Louis Rossmann, completely untrained in philosophy, repairing laptops, recently got hired by a billionaire, projects that are useful to humans, right to repair, farmers should have access to their tractors code, the least amount of interest in vanity of production, the opposite of that, a very solid philosophy, used to live in New York, Bill de Blasio, Paul was not happy about it, snitch out your customers to the cops, Texas, annoying young people who’s smart and good at thinking, no production value at all, people trying to learn to fix their laptops, people who don’t like bullshits, the price of real estate, dead city neighbourhood walkthough, he’s doing very practical present day philosophy, DRM is not something most people care about (even though they should), book management, take in different plugins, stripping drm protection from ebooks, minimizing time in front of screens, printing things up, the searchability, if you find yourself with 26.5 hours, not possible to tai-chi while audiobooks, doing bjj and listening to audiobooks, very strange.

Hard Case Crime - Scratch One by John Lange

Scratch One by John Lange

Scratch One by John Lange

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!

Reading, Short And Deep #409 – The Man Who Knew Everything by Edward D. Hoch

Reading, Short And Deep

Reading, Short And Deep #409

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss The Man Who Knew Everything by Edward D. Hoch

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

The Man Who Knew Everything was first published in Shock—The Magazine of Terrifying Tales, September 1960.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson Become a Patron!

Reading, Short And Deep #408 – The Little Movement by Philip K. Dick

Reading, Short And Deep

Reading, Short And Deep #408

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss The Little Movement by Philip K. Dick

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

The Little Movement was first published in Fantasy And Science Fiction, November 1952.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson Become a Patron!