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Classics 07 (EP 188) - The Store of the Worlds

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2010 5:55 pm
by tbaker2500
Update (Monday, September 22nd, 2014): Drabbleclassics 7 - The Store of the Worlds
Feature: The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheckley
No drabble for this episode.
Genres: Drabbleclassics Drama Fantasy
Original Episode: 188

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Friday, November 19th, 2010
Tompkins sighed. "What happens is this: You pay me my fee. I give you an injection which knocks you out. Then, with the aid of certain gadgets which I have in the back of the store, I liberate your mind..."

Music by: 19 Action News, special closing music: Pick up the Phone.
Episode Art: Lizanne Herd
Episode Sponsor: Frank Key's Story Anthology, "Impugned by a Peasant"
Forever Angels
Originally published in Playboy, 1959. Audio rights were obtained through the author's estate.

Twabble: “ I had heard that love is blind. Just before my son's viola recital, I prayed that it was deaf as well. ” by Ben Hathaway

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2010 5:58 pm
by tbaker2500
I think it's awesome that Frank is sponsoring the DC! Great combination. It was a bit odd hearing background music to Frank's reading.

The main story was very good. I really liked it!

The art was extremely well suited.

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2010 6:38 pm
by Mary Laura
Norm,

I'm a huge fan of your work and Drabblecast, and I think your characterization of Sylvio on Cowry Catchers is pure genius.
I'm a word nerd and wanted to give you a pronunciation heads up, if you haven't gotten this comment already.

According to Dictionary.com:
Tan·za·ni·a [tan-zuh-NEE-uh; Swahili. tahn-zah-NEE-ah]

When you first said 'Tan ZANY uh', it made me think of Loony Toons' Tasmanian Devil. Or some kind of crazed African tribal medicine man.
'That's Norm!,' I thought.

I looked at the Forever Angels website too, and thought it was an awesome project. Great people doing truly fantastic work. Thanks for mentioning it on Drabblecast.

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 10:26 pm
by F5iver
tbaker2500 wrote:
The art was extremely well suited.
Thanks, Tom!

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Thu Nov 25, 2010 3:18 pm
by Goldenrat
Wow, I really loved this one. A litlte bit of Inception with a little bit of The Road thrown in at the end. Love the melancholy stutf.

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Fri Nov 26, 2010 4:51 pm
by ahutson
Wow. I really liked this story. Especially the description of liberating the mind with all the billions and millions of alternate earths. The music was great. Anyone know what it is? Where can I find it?

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Fri Nov 26, 2010 9:19 pm
by Etaan
Wow, that was a beautiful, melancholy story from the bygone days of constant, mind-numbing fear with a thin candy shell of bliss. I was on the verge of tears the second time around knowing that the little nuisances and everyday distractions were all that he wanted in life. Mr. Wayne had to have to have a lot of faith that Tompkins would eventually figure out how to make it permanent in order to resist offing himself as soon as he stepped back outside into that wasteland.
tbaker2500 wrote:The art was extremely well suited.
Co-sign.

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Sat Nov 27, 2010 11:43 am
by themorg
Etaan wrote:Wow, that was a beautiful,
tbaker2500 wrote:The art was extremely well suited.
Co-sign.
Parenthetical notation?

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 6:12 am
by SGAcreative
Amazing story. I can understand wishing to have all those daily tribulations again, although you'd think he might have appreciated them a bit more the second time round.

I'm struck by a previous comment suggesting that the only thing keeping him going at the end is the hope that it'll eventually be possible to go back to stay. Since he seems to have gone back in time within his own timeline, wouldn't going back to stay mean having to live through losing everyone he loves all over again?

I also enjoyed Frank Key's story, but the review (or more precisely, the reviewer) annoyed me. How can anyone seriously suggest that the tradition of great, inspired nonsense petered out after C.S. Lewis? How can you talk about nonsense and not think of, oh, say, Douglas Adams?

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 1:28 am
by Mikes
I really liked this story. I tend to phase out when I'm listening/watching anything so wtists always take me by surprise and this was no exception.
SGAcreative wrote:How can you talk about nonsense and not think of, oh, say, Douglas Adams?
Adams' stories, though, had a plot and character progression. Frank Key's word seems to be absurdity for absurdity's sake.

I can appreciate his work, but it's not my thing (Key's, not Adam's) though, and I skipped his piece about midway through.

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 3:45 pm
by Etaan
SGAcreative wrote:I'm struck by a previous comment suggesting that the only thing keeping him going at the end is the hope that it'll eventually be possible to go back to stay. Since he seems to have gone back in time within his own timeline, wouldn't going back to stay mean having to live through losing everyone he loves all over again?
He did travel to an alternate universe, no matter how similar to his past it might be. Maybe he wound up in our universe - one where the impossibly thin odds that the Suez Canal, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the countless radar glitches that appeared to be enemy first strikes, the collapse of the Soviet Union and Matthew Broderick's hacking skills didn't result in the destruction of the world.

Heck, maybe he is from our universe and the Big One that we have all but stopped worrying about is still waiting to be triggered by Iran, North Korea, the India-Pakistan War or President Sarah Palin.

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 6:42 pm
by Unblinking
I liked this one, and the twist caught me offguard--which in retrospect really surprised me, and I hit myself for not thinking of it. Interesting how he incorporated his visit to the story into his memories of the past.

The invention sounds exactly like an invention I've seen in another story (not that that's a bad thing). "Just a Couple of Highly Experimental Weapons Tucked Away Behind the Toilet Paper" by Adam Troy Castro, which I heard on StarShipSofa:
http://www.starshipsofa.com/20100818/au ... oy-castro/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 8:33 pm
by ahutson
After listening to this story a second time I wondered if he really went to an alternate universe, or if the old man in the shop just drugged him and let him dream. When I first listened to it I thought with all the rhetoric and the talk about devices that the shopkeeper was really doing what he said. But we don't have access to that moment in the story, that is part of the twist at the end. When listening to it a second time I wondered how the few items that the protagonist brought with him could help the research, and if all the talk of parallel worlds wasn't just talk, like the character reflects in the story. Anyone else have this interpretation?

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 6:37 pm
by Unblinking
ahutson wrote:After listening to this story a second time I wondered if he really went to an alternate universe, or if the old man in the shop just drugged him and let him dream. When I first listened to it I thought with all the rhetoric and the talk about devices that the shopkeeper was really doing what he said. But we don't have access to that moment in the story, that is part of the twist at the end. When listening to it a second time I wondered how the few items that the protagonist brought with him could help the research, and if all the talk of parallel worlds wasn't just talk, like the character reflects in the story. Anyone else have this interpretation?
Interesting idea! I remember thinking that at the beginning of the story when the man was explaining the invention, but by the end I was pretty sure it was not just drugs. I'm not really sure why I shifted from one to the other, but I think that interpretation is a valid one, given the text.

A possible answer to your question about how the few items could help the research: barter. I don't think they have money anymore, but it seems that the barter of useful items/services is the primary form of valuables exchange. The old man adds a bit to his net list of useful items--then if he runs into somebody who happens to be carrying around a junky old flux capacitor, he can offer to trade his boots for it.

Re: Drabblecast 188- The Store of the Worlds by Robert Sheck

Posted: Wed Aug 24, 2011 6:50 pm
by j-m
Everything in this story worked so well. To the way it just seemed like he went back home and still considered if he wanted to really part with everything he had or not. The moment of realization when he opened up his sack and the only thing in it were bits of this and that.


On a side note, i love the music at the end of the episode! What an awesome song!

Re: Drabblecast 188 - The Store of the Worlds

Posted: Sat Jul 26, 2014 2:47 pm
by EarleyEditorial
The link at the end of the blurb on the page should read "Impugned", not "Impunged".

Re: Drabblecast 188 - The Store of the Worlds

Posted: Sat Jul 26, 2014 6:06 pm
by strawman
EarleyEditorial wrote:The link at the end of the blurb on the page should read "Impugned", not "Impunged".
Welcome to the forums, EarleyEditorial.
Note how we have cleverly seeded the place with typos and mispronunciations in order to draw you irresistibly into our web.

Re: Drabblecast 188 - The Store of the Worlds

Posted: Sat Jul 26, 2014 11:45 pm
by Algernon Sydney is Dead
EarleyEditorial wrote:The link at the end of the blurb on the page should read "Impugned", not "Impunged".
"Impunged" was "expugned" in two places. :)
Thank you, EarleyEditorial!


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{Marker for start of Classics comments. See Pondspider's suggestion.}

Re: Classics 07 (EP 188) - The Store of the Worlds

Posted: Wed Nov 05, 2014 11:42 pm
by Penman Bland
I've just managed to listen to this via the Classics, and two things beyond the already-heaped praise occur:

1) How the hell is it I'm nostalgic for the cold war's looming spectre of easily comprehended doom? Sure, having The Soviets as the thing to worry about takes less energy than keeping track of the diversity of possibly civilization-smashers we've built for ourselves in the years since The Wall came down... but to feel a longing for a time when you could have everything smashed on the instant seems goofy.

2) Listening to the passion spent by the panel at the end on the anthropocentricity of parallel-world fiction got me a little itchy, because no one tried looking at it from the other end. This is probably because it was phrased in the story in terms of choices made bringing about the parallels, but I can reconcile the whole thing thus: the choice is not the creator of the alternate world, it is a manifestation of the fact that there is an alternate world. This probably offends the notion of free-will and makes for an un-fun mechanistic world, unless one contemplates an aspect of personality that bridges all the alternates in which one exists, experiencing all available outcomes, and which is responsible for the horribly clear pictures we sometimes get of having stepped off the curb just as the bus passed-- somewhere, there's a very sad bus driver.

E.T.A-- say, there's some fun to be had with that; if the reality-spanning awareness touches all the essentially-me personalities, there's bound to be some overlap with a quantity of not-mes. I wonder if they ever fight to expand their pan-dimensional cognitive territory?