Mutant Futures

Melissa Proffitt Melissa at Proffitt.com
Wed Jul 26 23:25:14 EDT 2000


On Thu, 27 Jul 2000 01:28:27 +0100 (BST), Tanaqui wrote:

>Melissa:
> 
>[Chrysalids] 
>+ Me too.  Unfortunately I tend to mix up H.M. Hoover's _Children of Morrow_
>+ with it.  Don't know why.
>
>There are very graphic and crucial foot roles in both books? The 6-toed foot
>which marks the poor girl as an abomination, and the ?sea-snail? which chomps
>a poor lad on the foot in the latter? Oh, and evacutions from horribly 
>radioactive areas, of course.

Well, of course. :)  But also something about the way each story is told, I
think.  Maybe I should read them again.  Or write a paper on the crucial
role of feet in 1960s science fiction, or something.  Maybe Heinlein was
disguising a foot fetish under all that nudity and free love stuff.  It
could happen....

There are other books I tend to mix up, too.  As I said, I just read
Catherine Asaro's _Primary Inversion_ and for the first twenty pages I was
almost certain I was reading Janet Kagan's _Hellspark_:  both begin with
professionals visiting an unfamiliar world, both main characters are of a
well-known profession or class that is feared and respected by ordinary
people, both characters have an unexpected and intense encounter with a
stranger...it was just weird.  But all that is simply my justification, my
explanation to myself for the phenomenon, because while I was reading the
second book I felt certain I had read it all before--this strange
overlayering of memory, almost.

The way we store memories is fascinating to me--the idea of being able to
access memories through a smell, for instance.  Or the old saw about
pregnant women losing their brain cells.  Recently I heard about a study
which indicated that pregnancy does not in fact make you forget stuff, to
which I say, Duh.  What I notice when I'm pregnant is a decreased ability to
recall facts--not the same as forgetfulness, because the memories are all
still there.  It's as if the paths that lead to those memories are blocked
and I have to find a detour.  

Have to care for the infant now, which cuts my ramblings short--

Melissa Proffitt
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