Charles Rafferty and the amazing photographs of Brian Oldham! Yes, this boy! Fondly known as "Star Boy" now in my strange, shiny mind.
Meanwhile, as I continue to read the science fiction of Cordwainer Smith, I am rediscovering why I sometimes don't like science fiction. Perhaps I will discuss some of this in an entry to be titled, "Oh, my God, cats again?!" noting the science fiction writer's terrible prescience.
Hello Kitty? Could he have predicted the relentless cat humor all over the Internet?
OK, it appears that this will be my anti-cat rant, after all, after reading "The Game of Rat and Dragon," a Cordwainer Smith story that ends with a space hero upset with a nurse who is upset with him for favoring cats--that is, telepathic pin-lighting cats better known as "partners"--over humans. Underhill, the human hero, has read the nurse's mind briefly, but then:
He cut off the sight of her mind and, as he buried his face in the pillow, he caught an image of the Lady May [his space partner, a cat].
"She is a cat," he thought. "That's all she is--a cat!"
But that was not how his mind saw her--quick beyond all dreams of speed, sharp, clever, unbelievably graceful, beautiful, wordless and undemanding.
Where would he ever find a woman who could compare with her?
OK, there you have it. It's a cute story, with appropriate concern for animal welfare and cats-in-space, etc., etc, and I love cats, my friends' cats, the bookstore cat, etc., but, come on, "wordless and undemanding"?! As you can see, I am not wordless and undemanding myself.
But, to get back to discovering the stars, I'd also like to send you to "Old Icarus," a poem by Colin Pope, up now at Linebreak.
Lots to mull over there, eh?