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Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:22 am
by StalinSays
Feature: Unreliable Witness by Jo Walton
Drabble: Missing Things by Ben Kapitz

Image

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012
I don’t know if this is the same tape as last time, because They keep moving things around and stealing them. I don’t know who does it. It may be the staff here, or my own family when they come to visit, or the aliens, but somebody’s always doing it — taking my glasses, my tapes, my TV remote, anything I put down for a second. I don’t think it’s the other residents. I used to think that, but I don’t think they’re that organized. Some of them are a bit senile, to tell you the truth…

Art by Kathleen Beckett
Read by Delianne Forget

Twabble: “Even they don't fully understand the butterfly effect, yet they seem to love flapping those delicate and deadly wings.” by TroyStJames

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 5:50 am
by Dr. Ew
Wowzers! Jo Walton and Delianne Forget, hats off to you both!
I reeeeally enjoyed that.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 7:58 am
by Christi
This was more that brilliant. I laughed out loud.
I hope that aliens visit me in my senile dementia.
If old people cared about aliens more than there bodily functions, it would be a lot more fun to visit them.
I love the stubborn nature of this ol’ lady! She knows what she knows.
Her granddaughter should forget the books and download some DC for her.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 1:25 am
by baile divino
my own grandma just went into an old folks home. i dont believe its right that anyone should end their earth days in such a place, but i also know that she's been a mean old bat ever since she was a mean young bat, so there's a terrible completeness to the way she's brought it on herself.

i'm engaged now & rather unliked by my mum-in-law-to-be, & she doesnt treat my fiance well, either, but we love her anyways. its awful to think she might be stubborn enough that we have to stick her in a building full of strangers to die, just to preserve our own sanity. honestly, i don't know if i could do that to a person, but i dont know if i could live under the stress of a bitchy in-house mum-in-law, either.

this story was difficult for me emotionally, but i also love the thought of an alien visiting either of my own mean old bats. it makes me laugh, which is after all, something the poor little alien needed if it ever wanted to live past 40 & discover the wonders of senility.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:32 am
by Christi
This is a huge topic of debate, I have seen two sides.

My great grandmother pleaded to go the old age home. She had friends there, they swapped knitting patterns and meatball recipes. She was really happy and it was where she wanted to be. The family visited often and looked forward to visiting Gran.

My grandfather was senile, my parents unable to take care of him, he would wander off and get lost, we would spend hours looking for him. He was an ornery man and abusive. He ended up in a home and had very few visitors, he received better than he deserved.

On a lighter note:

There must be an evolutionary reason that the technologically advanced alien races do not survive longer than breeding age. They have limited time to get the job done so they focus on the job, and that’s good for humanity. What if they got bored? These super sophisticated beings would sit in the holodeck, surrounded by there grandchildren and say, “well, what do we do now?” That’s when the invasions would start. Jesus clones would be the least of our worries and the Megabeasts would be as lovable pets.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 1:37 pm
by strawman
Christi wrote: Jesus clones would be the least of our worries and the Megabeasts would be as lovable pets.
The world is perfectly safe, since Norm, Tom, and Bo have designed Drabblecastian security with Fail:Safe protocols, the weird has escaped only once. Norm assures me Fangwing cannot survive off the island for long. Every Mexican drug lord wants him for their personal pit bull.

Regarding the story, I like Deliane's voice. She conveys a kind of weird Betty Whitedness. I also like the idea that Earthlings are unique in the universe for their lifespan, and the aliens want to discover how to live longer, although laughter seems an implausible key. A little too much time, maybe, explaining the thought process behind who was taking her things. But funny the alien gives her the same explanation as everyone else.

Baile divino, one thing to watch out for. You're relationship with your in-laws will mellow over time, but at some point I believe it is generally true that as they age, they become more and more transparent (I wonder if that means they become transhuman parents?) You will detect you husband's nascent character defects to their more fully developed ones. Aging parents bear within them the signs of who we are on track to become, if we fail to correct our natural trajectories.

After all, we came into being from their twisted DNA, right?

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 5:12 pm
by Polecat
Having had a problem with not very bright people taking my things for as long as I can remember, I found I had great sympathy with the narrator. Never met an alien though, although maybe their disguise (on the outside) was just too good for me to penetrate. Given that its well documented that depression shortens ones life, I found the laughter/longevity correlation quite convincing, and the fact that Tom had taken laughter to be interference on television channels made me laugh, quite literally. All in all, this story was one of my all time favorite editions of the Drabblecast. The kidney fairy also caused me to grin sardonically, and the lethal butterflies... there's a concept fraught with deadly beauty.
One small quibble, however; the story sounded to me a lot more UK-centric than American; Ms Forget (all of whose contributions to the DC I have enjoyed immensely - The Red Bride is another of my all time favorites, twiglings) is more than capable of rendering texts with a british accent, and in my opinion, the story would have benefited from such a treatment.

respectfully,

The Polecat

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:50 pm
by Christi
strawman wrote:
Christi wrote: Jesus clones would be the least of our worries and the Megabeasts would be as lovable pets.
The world is perfectly safe, since Norm, Tom, and Bo have designed Drabblecastian security with Fail:Safe protocols, the weird has escaped only once. Norm assures me Fangwing cannot survive off the island for long. Every Mexican drug lord wants him for their personal pit bull.
Thanks for the reassurance Strawman, I will sleep better knowing that we are protected by the genius of Norm, Bo and Tom. If they say its safe then I believe them!

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:53 pm
by Christi
Polecat wrote: One small quibble, however; the story sounded to me a lot more UK-centric than American; Ms Forget (all of whose contributions to the DC I have enjoyed immensely - The Red Bride is another of my all time favorites, twiglings) is more than capable of rendering texts with a british accent, and in my opinion, the story would have benefited from such a treatment.

respectfully,

The Polecat
I would find it hard to accept it from a Brit’s point of view.
Aliens don’t visit the British! They are too boring!
They don’t visit South Africans either, we have nothing worth taking.
To be believable, it had to have happened in America.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 5:29 pm
by Unblinking
I enjoyed this story immensely. Although it could be interpreted several ways, I tend to take the alien's words at face value. He really was an alien here to find out secrets of longevity, and really no one is taking her things.

I did think that what the alien said was a bit flawed, though. They said that they no life they've ever found, including their own animals, lives beyond breeding age, and that humans are the only ones. What about other earth animals? Sure, many in the wild die at a younger age because of natural dangers, but if removed from dangerous activities and given medical care animals will live beyond breeding age, right?

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:16 am
by Lone Mopper
As I grow closer to the age of the senior settlement, dried out pastures and mushed banana's I can sympathize with the woman in the story and can only pray that the mother-ship and corresponding aliens whisk me away quickly upon arrival or at least before the things in the closet get me.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 1:33 am
by cinnamon
This story made me sad.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 1:25 am
by tbaker2500
cinnamon wrote:This story made me sad.
Yes, me too.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Thu Jul 05, 2012 2:55 pm
by zZzacha
I thought this was a very cute story about a lovely old lady. I love the way she makes sense to her world. Way better than sitting around grumbling and drooling! Aliens are much more fun.

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Thu Jul 05, 2012 3:31 pm
by tbaker2500
Welcome back, zzZacha!

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Thu Jul 05, 2012 4:08 pm
by zZzacha
tbaker2500 wrote:Welcome back, zzZacha!
Great to be back! Again!
It's a lot of work, catching up on 50, 100... I don't want to count the number of episodes I have to (no... WANT) to listen to, but I'm having a blast so far!

I'm so happy I could exclamate every sentence I type! So I do!

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Wed Sep 05, 2012 7:03 pm
by StalinSays
Congrats to Jo Walton on the Hugo win!

http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/bo ... ong-others

Let that serve as encouragement to anyone hoping to hear Norm read their bios someday. We have Hugo winners slushing around our slush piles!

Re: Drabblecast 235 – Unreliable Witness

Posted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 2:47 am
by tbaker2500
Congrats!