Drabblecast 039 - The Beekeepers

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vburn
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Thanks

Post by vburn » Tue Dec 04, 2007 5:22 am

I just wanted to thank the author and Norm for the great story and production, both this one and The One that Got Away. I love the unusual styles both of these had. I also like to hear from the authors in the comments on these podcast sites. Thanks again.

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Post by G. E. Lee » Mon Jan 07, 2008 11:37 pm

OK, I won't go back and Lazarus all the old stories I'm catching up on, but this was the first Drabblecast I heard, and I have been utterly hooked. I'm still working my way up to current, but this was just hideous.
I can't remember the last time anything made my skin crawl like this. Great story.

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normsherman
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Post by normsherman » Wed Jan 09, 2008 12:08 am

Lazarus away! We had like 8 people in the forums for half that stuff!
"Give us all some Jelly"

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Post by bolddeceiver » Mon Jan 28, 2008 1:38 am

I agree with the previous comments: Even if this one feels somewhat far-fetched (and laying aside the unliklihood that an alien lifeform would look enough like and have a life cycle similar enough to terrestrial wasps to be recognizable as or mistakable for the latter), I have enough of a layman's knowledge of parasitic vectors to know how ridiculously complex they can be (a great primer if you're interested is the second act of this episode of PRI's This American Life). I was reminded of Escape Pod 112, and would love if vectorpunk eventually became a mature SF subgenre. ;)

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Post by Philippa » Thu Jan 31, 2008 1:00 pm

Parasitic vector breaking news! Just heard about this one on Quirks & Quarks:

http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/rele ... ants.shtml

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Post by strawman » Thu Jan 31, 2008 3:25 pm

This parasite might explain another natural phenomenon.

Image

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Post by bolddeceiver » Fri Feb 01, 2008 2:59 am

Philippa wrote:Parasitic vector breaking news! Just heard about this one on Quirks & Quarks:

http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/rele ... ants.shtml
That may be worthy of a Drabblenews spot!

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Mind controlling Wasps

Post by cammoblammo » Wed Feb 20, 2008 8:14 am

You thought mind-controlled ants are cool? Check out the Emerald cockroach wasp.

This wasp is nasty, at least if you're a cockroach. First, the wasp selectively paralyses the legs of the roach and then, in a somewhat more delicate operation, knocks out the escape reflex. That's right, the wasp performs brain surgery.

The wasp then bites off the roach's antennae and manipulates the stumps to lead the roach back to the wasp's burrow. Once safely back home, the wasp can lay an egg in the roach's abdomen. After a few days the egg will hatch inside the roach, and the larva can feed on the gooey goodness therein. The larva is careful to eat the organs in the right order --- it wouldn't do for the roach to die now, would it? Eventually, the larva forms a cocoon and the roach can finally die. Once the wasp is fully develops it breaks free in a way befitting all the best movies you ever saw.

Next up: Predator versus the Emerald wasp!

From the wikipedia link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qEwaHPQfBpQ&NR

http://www.bgu.ac.il/life/Faculty/Liber ... _short.mpg

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Post by Chuckbucket » Thu Feb 21, 2008 3:26 am

that wasp is so lucky, I want my offspring to develop from the insides of another creature.
"Why don't you come back later on, and you and me can find a couple of low-mileage-pit-woofies and help them build a memory."

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Post by strawman » Fri Feb 22, 2008 12:45 am

Chuckbucket wrote:that wasp is so lucky, I want my offspring to develop from the insides of another creature.
It could happen, Chuckbucket. Who are you dating?

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Post by cammoblammo » Fri Feb 22, 2008 4:14 am

Chuckbucket wrote:that wasp is so lucky, I want my offspring to develop from the insides of another creature.
Funnily enough, that's how my offspring developed. Although my wife tells me if I call her a cockroach again I'll have no chance of being a father again.

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Post by Mr. Tweedy » Fri Feb 22, 2008 4:26 am

Maybe if you hadn't bitten off her antennae...
Advertise in this space!

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Post by normsherman » Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:11 am

Mr. Tweedy wrote:Maybe if you hadn't bitten off her antennae...
I dunno, sounds like she's the one who "has him by the stumps" - so to speak
"Give us all some Jelly"

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Post by Philippa » Fri Feb 22, 2008 10:15 am

I don't what kind of girls you hang out with cammo, but I get a bit piqued when a man injects poison into my neck, lays his egg in my belly then buries me alive in his burrow - and I'm usually up for anything!

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Post by cammoblammo » Fri Feb 22, 2008 11:10 am

Philippa wrote:I don't what kind of girls you hang out with cammo, but I get a bit piqued when a man injects poison into my neck, lays his egg in my belly then buries me alive in his burrow - and I'm usually up for anything!
You know, the more girls I meet the luckier I realise I am to have married the wonderful woman I did!

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Re: Drabblecast 39 - The Beekeepers by J. Alan Pierce

Post by eric_marsh » Tue Sep 29, 2009 2:05 am

Great story! Imaginative premises, epic context, very well done.

I've been working my way backwards through the archives and this is the first story that I really felt compelled me to make a post about it.
Life is a tragedy for those who feel, but a comedy to those who think. - Horace Walpole
Eric's Drabbles: http://eric-marsh.blogspot.com/"

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Re: Drabblecast 39 - The Beekeepers by J. Alan Pierce

Post by peterg » Fri Mar 05, 2010 1:32 am

Biology - been there done that. Well pretty close...
Many species of wasps lay their eggs inside caterpillars. To make this possible, the wasps' have a secret weapon in the form of a dose of virus-like particles that are injected along with the eggs.

Not only do these disable the caterpillars' immune system to stop it attacking the eggs, they also cause paralysis and keep the host from pupating - turning the caterpillar into an eternally youthful larder and nursery for the wasp grubs.

A closer look at these particles reveals that, although they look like viruses, they contain genetic material from the wasp, which is transcribed into the caterpillars' DNA - causing production of the very toxins that bring about their downfall.
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn1 ... r-dna.html

--Peter G

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Re: Drabblecast 39 - The Beekeepers by J. Alan Pierce

Post by Unblinking » Tue Feb 08, 2011 4:01 pm

Lots of cool and imaginative details in this one. Usually I'd complain about lack of characters to identify with, but I was too distracted by all the aforementioned cool and imaginative details that I didn't really mind. Parasite vectors FTW!

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Re: Drabblecast 039 - The Beekeepers

Post by sandrilde » Fri Apr 05, 2013 2:08 pm

I had to listen to this twice and only felt like I understood it fully the second time. Very much enjoyed it though. No merbabies, and I like that the same author had such a completely different/contrasting tone in these two different stories.


VERY solid stuff!

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Re: Drabblecast 039 - The Beekeepers

Post by Varda » Fri Jun 28, 2013 2:34 pm

This story was profoundly disturbing, especially when it gets to the point where humanity has basically accepted the new status-quo of complete Tehtix infestation. Usually in stories like this, the end result is drone-slave status for the infected species (I'm looking at you, Mass Effect!), but this story went in a truly original direction in that the humans stay sentient and capable of moral decisions after the fact. The Tehtix can't compel the humans to do anything other than make the choice to live or die. But that simple drive causes the humans to behave exactly the way most beneficial for their parasite.

I really enjoyed all the bonus real-life biology examples shared on this thread. I didn't see Toxoplasma gondii mentioned, so I'll just leave this right here for future readers to enjoy. :)

The narrative style reminded me a lot of World War Z (the novel, not the movie) with its documentary feel.
Medical Microfiction: Stories about Science

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