Sunday, November 9, 2008
A collage which Roman Scott and I made over a period of two years or so in the late 1970s (or at least part of it, given the limits of this photo) -- i.e., when we were around twelve, thirteen years old. Our title for it was "The Giant Collage" -- guess you might also call it the Decline of the West or something else. We would pass it back and forth over the months, working on it, and taping sections together. The photos and text were cut out of Soviet Lifes, National Geographics, newspapers, Wild West magazines, newsmagazines, Famous Monsters, and now unidentifiable sources. There were multimedia elements as well, acrylic paint, pen and ink, and so on. Soviet Life was a propaganda magazine distributed here by the USSR, displaying the glories of Soviet communism.
Not so long ago finished Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land, (the rereleased unabridged version) one of the longer books I've read in a while. To paraphrase what Dr. Johnson wrote about Paradise Lost, no one ever wished for it to be longer. My opinion of Stranger is divided; Heinlein isn't a subtle writer, and the pantheism is a simplistic element. However, there is much that lingers with one, not least including the Man from Mars and his development. Heinlein assumes that 1950s or early 60s- era martini culture would be around far into the future; The behavior of the characters is often straight out of the Cocktail Nation. This in itself seems short-sighted -- culture always changes, even if in unpredictable ways. Also, he might have set the novel on a planet further away than Mars, so that the premise would hold up in light of new knowledge about our neighbor.
For science fiction writers from roughly the same era, I still would prefer, say, Dick or Sheckley.
Also for sierra hotel india echo sierra sierra echo sierra and giggles, have been re-reading Walden.
Posted by Jonathan at 9:09 PM