Vol. 33, Jan 2011

Read Me First…

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1632 Fiction

Black Gold
Gerhard Grave's residence, Wietze, February 1634 Christian Grave used one of the new-fangled forks (three prongs rather than the Italian two-pronged variant) to lift a portion of medium-rare beef to his mouth. The taste of the well-cooked meat flooded his mouth as he started to chew. "So, Christian, what do you think of my well-boring [...]

Fire and Brimstone
Grantville, summer of 1636"What can I do for you, Mr. Underwood?" the young lawyer asked."I want an injunction compelling that bar to change its name. It's embarrassing," Deacon Albert Underwood said. "I asked the man politely to take that sign down and he laughed at me." Jimmy Dick found Albert's polite request rude and demanding, [...]

King of the Road
Spring 1635 Johan Frey enjoyed the breeze coming through the open window. The cool evening air seemed to wash away his cares. The city watch office was overly warm and Watch Captain Rolf Nestmann tended to mutter when he read; Johan found that annoying. Since the captain had a full week's correspondence to plow through, [...]

Transit
"Making Ideas into Reality Since 1975" —An Old SoldierHambühren, 5 miles west of CelleHans stopped just outside the door. The sun had barely cleared the horizon, and the sky was a great golden canvas with wispy streaks of pink clouds strewn across it like bits of cotton candy. It was a cool, crisp morning with [...]

Continuing Serials

Northwest Passage, Part Seven
Le Chaume, Mid January 1634The torches were starting to gutter out as the sun rose, but the fires were still being stoked as the villagers gathered, their packing and loading finished. Their day had started long before the dawn as the entire Huguenot population of Le Chaume prepared to leave for the New World. The [...]

Second Chance Bird, Episode Two
Chapter Three: Out the DoorGrantville, near the end of May, 1635How does one go about leaving on a year journey? A journey around Africa on a ship about as technologically advanced as the Mayflower?! Pam stood in her bedroom scowling at the things she had arranged on the bed and feeling very put out with [...]

1632 Non Fiction

A Visit to Wietze
(This is an opinion piece. It is my personal view of what Wietze might be like. However, I will attempt to justify my "view" with cites from references and canon.)After the Ring of Fire the up-timers need fuels. Not just gasoline, but also diesel. They can strip gasoline from some of the gas wells around [...]

Renaissance Boogie: Dancing in Early Modern Europe
Soon after the Ring of Fire, the residents of Grantville will discover that dancing was far more important in seventeenth century European society than it was in twentieth century America. In The Courtier (1561), Castiglione recounts an anecdote about a noblewoman who asked a knight to dance with her. He refused, saying that dancing was [...]

Columns

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Time Spike

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Universe Annex

A Martian?  Odd, I See (or A Taste of Milwaukee's Finest)
"There was a racket like a flock of crows eating a bunch of canaries—whistles, cackles, caws, trills, and what have you. I rounded a clump of stumps, and there was Tweel!" "Tweel?" said Harrison, and "Tveel?" said Leroy and Putz. "That freak ostrich," explained the narrator. "At least, Tweel is as near as I can [...]

His Name in Lights
The time display said 33.16, an hour and a half after sunset. Daniel was so tired that he no longer appreciated the spectacular sky where Jupiter occupied a significant proportion of the horizon, an immense ball in white and red pajama-stripes. By its red-orange light, he staggered off the plate-ramming machine, rubbing muscles stiff with [...]

The Walls Are Falling Down
Well, it finally happened. For decades—and I do mean decades—I have wondered why science fiction hasn't received the respect it deserves. Science fiction fans, in self defense, created a ghetto and then closed the walls of that ghetto so that anyone new who wanted to arrive via movies or television couldn't get in.Science fiction itself [...]