Heinlein Reader’s Discussion Group Saturday 05-26-2001 5:00 P.M. EDT “Humor”–its place and purpose in Heinlein’s Writings

Heinlein Reader’s Discussion Group

Saturday 05-26-2001 5:00 P.M. EDT

“Humor”–its place and purpose in Heinlein’s Writings

Click Here to Return to Index

Here Begins The Discussion Log
You have just entered room “Heinlein Readers Group chat.”

DavidWrightSr: Hi David

AGplusone: Hi, David … madly typing into IM windows

AGplusone: sorry I didn’t get here swiftly

DavidWrightSr: That’s ok. Did you see the log. We are apparently now limited to 100 characters. Bummer

AGplusone: Yes, lowest common denominator, back down to the 81 or 79 limit in AOL rooms

KultsiKN has entered the room.

SAcademy has entered the room.

AGplusone: Hi, Kultsi, Ginny

DavidWrightSr: Hi Ginny. Hi Kultsi

KultsiKN: Good evening all!

SAcademy: Hello David

SAcademy: Hello Kultsi

DavidWrightSr: AIM has cut us to about 100 characters. It’s somewhat of a pain.

KultsiKN: The new version?

SAcademy: Really? What happens then? Do we talk in Wagnerian telegraphese?

AGplusone: But if you use a lot of …s when you are trying to express a long thought, you can get through it

AGplusone: No, it’s a little longer still than the 81 characters the AOL (on-AOL) rooms give you.

DavidWrightSr: Version doesn’t matter, except new version lets you type all you wont’ but then won’t send it

DavidWrightSr: wont=want

KultsiKN: Uh-huh.

AGplusone: It rings an alert when you hit the limit … mine alert is a bell

AGplusone: my alert

SAcademy: I suppose that would frustrate some!

AGplusone: and if I type fast I have to stop and wait for all the bells to stop ringing

AGplusone: before I can send

SAcademy: I’ve lost all the sound effects. Have to get someone in to fix them

fgherman has entered the room.

KultsiKN: S’thing good in being a slow typist.

AGplusone: [I did read your log Dave and got here early to test that aspect … was hoping it wouldn’t limit Macs

AGplusone: ]

AGplusone: Hit the limit with that sentence.

DavidWrightSr: Limit appears to be on server, not client.

fgherman: Hello all

AGplusone: Hi, Felicia … did I get it right this time?

KultsiKN: Too popular, I s’pose.

fgherman: Yes you did

AGplusone: great

SAcademy: Good afternoon

DavidWrightSr: Nope. my pc doesn’t give me any warning at all.

AGplusone: Hope you like Three Men in a boat

DavidWrightSr: when I overtype

AGplusone: Maybe you should get a Mac, Dave …

SAcademy: Especially the can of pineapple!


DavidWrightSr: Heaven forbid πŸ™‚

DavidWrightSr: BRB. got to feed the animals and take my medicine

AGplusone: I loved the pineapple can … and opener

AGplusone: Okay, we’ll start in about five minutes. How’s Joel, Felicia?

fgherman: He’s coming down with the same cold I’ve got, but otherwise, ok

AGplusone: Hope it’s not the same one I fought off Thursday and Friday

OakMan 7111 has entered the room.

AGplusone: Hi, Jon, welcome

OakMan 7111: Hello, all

fgherman: Hello Jon

OakMan 7111: Hi David

KultsiKN: Hello, Jon!

SAcademy: Hello

fgherman: I’ve dragged myself away from Cloudmakers

OakMan 7111: Wow, what a warm greeting, thanks

AGplusone: Ahhh … what is Cloudmakers?

OakMan 7111: good. I made a point of being home in time to catch this chat

fgherman: That’s the group following the mystery game that’s part of A.I. the new Spielberg movie

fgherman: very addictive

AGplusone: They’re starting to promo that movie … heavily

fgherman: If the movie is half is good as the mystery is should be a knockout

SAcademy: I can promise you one thing. I am not going to see it.

fgherman: Why not

SAcademy: Hate movies.

fgherman: That’s a good reason

SAcademy: They ruin everything. But they’re good for selling books.

fgherman: I love movies, especially Kubrick movies

AGplusone: Lately there haven’t been a good many good ones.

fgherman: And this is based on a script he developed from the Brian Aldiss story.

fgherman: I don’t think books translate well into movies

KultsiKN: Did they mutilate the story?

fgherman: Short stories on the other hand…

OakMan 7111: I just purchased a “Fine” copy of the 1950 Astounding in which RAH writes of the making

fgherman: Haven’t read the Aldiss story

OakMan 7111: of “destination Moon”

Heinleinsmof has entered the room.

OakMan 7111: Second time I’ve owned that edition – last time it cost me fifty cents

fgherman: Puppetmasters wasn’t half bad

AGplusone: Is there anything in it that isn’t in the collection Requiem, Jon? Like photos, etc.?

AGplusone: Hi, Bill, welcome

DavidWrightSr: Hi Bill

SAcademy: Only the other half.

Heinleinsmof: Howdy

fgherman: At least it wasn’t “Starship Showgirls”

fgherman: Heloo Bill

siannon secundus has entered the room.

SAcademy: I can’t read that color at all.

KultsiKN: Secundus?

OakMan 7111: Welcome Jani!

AGplusone: Better than Project Moonbase, I hope.

fgherman: Hello Jani

AGplusone: You are Jani?

siannon secundus: No I am!

siannon secundus: Hi everyone, assorted hugs and so on πŸ™‚

SAcademy: Bill, that’s even worse.

AGplusone: Okay, let’s start … ’tis close enough to the beginning.

AGplusone: Everyone is sending in black and bold?

OakMan 7111: The cover is a pic – thats the only one

AGplusone: Has any1 read Jane’s piece in the Heinlein Journal about Three Men in a Boat and Number of the Beast?

KultsiKN: Jani, you’re too yellow…

siannon secundus: Yellow?

KultsiKN: Your name is all yellow, at least on my screen.

AGplusone: She suggests that among other things, Number is a tribute to some humor RAH enjoyed.

siannon secundus: Sorry kultsi, I don’t know how to change that …

AGplusone: Including Three Men in a Boat …

OakMan 7111: I think NoB is very very funny

AGplusone: Could we look at that first?

DavidWrightSr: GA

AGplusone: I think the four major characters in Number are take offs on the four characters in Boat … any agree

AGplusone: or dis agree?

AGplusone: Let me describe the four ….

AGplusone: 1. A know-it-all, who has no practical experience … RogerPilkey has entered the room.

OakMan 7111: Hello Roger welcome

AGplusone: 2. A lazy get by with as little effort as possible …

fgherman: Hello Roger

AGplusone: 3. A builder of consensus, mild appearing, harboring a great intelligence RogerPilkey: hi, first time using aim, won’t talk much..

AGplusone: 4. a pugnacious fighter with everyone and everything

AGplusone: Hi, Roger … just finished my summary

AGplusone: In Boat, Harris is the know-it-all … I suggest someone in Number fits that description

Heinleinsmof: Jake

rjjusu has entered the room.

rjjusu: Hello campers

AGplusone: likewise, 2 is George, 3 is “J” or Jay, and 4 is Montmorcey …

AGplusone: Hi, Randy, we’re just starting … with a comparison of characters in Boat and in RAH’s Number of the

AGplusone: Beast

AGplusone: And I agree with Bill, Jake is the equivalent to Harris

siannon secundus: Oh, Hilda’s the dog, then?

Heinleinsmof: And HIlda, doubtless, with Montmorency

AGplusone: Any guesses as to who is whom? Exactly, Jani!

OakMan 7111: dog?

rjjusu: Now Jani, don’t be so …… catty?

siannon secundus: She’s too clever. More like a cat….

siannon secundus: Damn, Randy, beat me to it πŸ™‚

AGplusone: Montmorency … is a fox terrier that fights with everyone, and always starts things

Heinleinsmof: Named after the variety of cherries?

AGplusone: Doesn’t that remind you of Hilda, Sharpie, Corners …

siannon secundus: Cherries?

Heinleinsmof: That’s the only other Montmorency I know — except it’s named for the locale.

AGplusone: Where is Montmorency, Bill?

siannon secundus: I never heard of Montmorency cherries, that’s all

AGplusone: And what kind of cherry …

rjjusu: Given the usual dialog of Space Opera, one with cream on top.

Heinleinsmof: Poitiers? Anjou? Somewhere in southwestern France, I think

AGplusone: [there is, for cat lovers, a nifty little tidbit about Montmorency and a big black tom in Boat]

rjjusu: Anjou = Pears?

OakMan 7111: Isn’t Montmorency also known for its wine?

Heinleinsmof: I don’t recall — brandied cherries is the only association I have for Montmorency.

AGplusone: In any event, any guesses to the identity for the two who are left? Or dis agreement with my theory …

AGplusone: yes/no/bored stiff … indicate by “a” “b” or “c”

fgherman: Silence gives consent

fgherman: a

OakMan 7111: d: wishing I’d had time to check the suggested reading out

siannon secundus: B!

siannon secundus: I read Jane’s essay, but it was ages ago …

AGplusone: You can download Boat Jon …

DavidWrightSr: Me too. Just downloaded it Thursday morning.

OakMan 7111: I know – I had every intention of doing it last night.

DavidWrightSr: I posted the link on the log.

AGplusone: Jane doesn’t identify Hilda as that nasty little fox terrier, but …

KultsiKN: Gimme URL, pls.

[Editor’s Note: Link here for download]

OakMan 7111: (thats how I knew)

OakMan 7111: I do like that description of Hilda – except I’d put ‘brave’ in place of “little”

AGplusone: Turning to “humor” for a moment … why isn’t HSS-WT as cutting as say, for example, Number of the B

AGplusone: when it portrays the role of the taxman, for example …?

siannon secundus: Not as satirical?

AGplusone: That’s part of it, I think … anyone else?

Heinleinsmof: The whole of TNOTB is a romp, whereas in most other books, humor is incidental.

OakMan 7111: I wonder of Heinlein felt more assurred of commercial success and pulled fewer punches?

Heinleinsmof: And he uses different forms of humor, too — his whimsey can be startling.

siannon secundus: Yes, good point Bill

AGplusone: It’s a juvenile, of course, which meant it had to get by Eagle-Eye Dalglish

AGplusone: who might have felt that the most noble act we perform is being tax-givers

AGplusone: πŸ™‚

OakMan 7111: LOL

siannon secundus: Was she English ? πŸ™‚

AGplusone: Not sure … Ginny? Bill?

OakMan 7111: I’ve never thought of what I do on April 14th as “giving”

AGplusone: She was certainly an advocate of English children’s novels, Wind in the Willows, among others

Heinleinsmof: I’ve heard it said she was English,but have no support for that.

AGplusone: But Kip’s world is different from Deety’s, isn’t it?

OakMan 7111: Kip’s world is staid, isn’t it?

Heinleinsmof: Utopian fifties.

AGplusone: different in outrage factor, perhaps, fifties were utopian a bit

AGplusone: Everyone was complacent … the educators so complacent they started tinkering with the basic mechanis

AGplusone: mechanisms

DavidWrightSr: Aside from personalities, were there events in 3men that correspond to NOTB?

siannon secundus: Corkscrew

AGplusone: Yes, and with HSS-WT …

Heinleinsmof: There are actually two views of the fifties — placid utopia versus pressure cooker.

fgherman: I go with pressure cooker myself

AGplusone: but most felt at the time “it was the best of all possible worlds” … at least that’s what we were

AGplusone: told to believe.

Heinleinsmof: Both were true.

OakMan 7111: First ten years of my life – my judgement is skewed towards idyllic

siannon secundus: It seemed OK at the time (I was about four)

AGplusone: So, if you’re outraged with paying taxes, you pay in cash and depend on a very interesting odd deci-

AGplusone: sion from the Tax Court that said you didn’t have to keep records …

DavidWrightSr: Was it ever possible to actually get away with that?

AGplusone: Sure, the guy in the case that went up to the Court

OakMan 7111: pennies?

AGplusone: (pennies in a bucket of axle grease tended to really annoy the IRS, Jon)

Heinleinsmof: Hey, legal tender is legal tender.

DavidWrightSr: You mean, that’s how he paid his taxes ? O:-)

OakMan 7111: thats why you should make sure the grease is boiling….

AGplusone: Right, but as Kip’s dad says, “never knew a skunk welcome at a picnic”

rjjusu: not everything that is legal is right (or smart) and vice versa

SAcademy: I;ve had run ins with the Inland revenue in UK–IRS isn”t the only one that’s that way!

AGplusone: So bundles of bills was what Kip’s dad sent in … which got him a visit from his friendly “I’m from

AGplusone: the gobment and am here to he’p you” agent

siannon secundus: Hehehe Which is worse, SA, ours or yours?

fgherman: As Westlake’s Parker said, “You don’t mess with the Feds.”

Heinleinsmof: There were lots of interesting loopholes in the fifties — remember a film about a revenoo’er come to

Heinleinsmof: audit a family that bartered everything.

AGplusone: I agree: I once was ‘from the gubment and am here to he’p you’ I took it personally.

AGplusone: … of course I was young then …

AGplusone: But, and here’s the question: what does that sort of humor do?

SAcademy: OTOH–ever had an audit?

AGplusone: the poking of mild fun at the IRS …

fgherman: SA, don’t talk dirty

OakMan 7111: Only the CPA kind – and that was a pain but semi-self-inflicted

Heinleinsmof: I think it was more to characterize Kip’s family and background — well outside the box.

SAcademy: Try it sometime.

fgherman: I’ll pass, thank you

fgherman: Rather give birth again

AGplusone: [I once investigated a company run by a former IRS agent … I asked without a subpoena for all his…

SAcademy: Okay. I’m with you, but now and then they insist

siannon secundus: I had the VAT man when I was self-employed … that isn’t nice πŸ™

AGplusone: books and records and he then confessed, figuring I had the same powers the IRS had, and settled.]

Heinleinsmof: Obviously not a constitutional lawyer.

AGplusone: Nah, the penalty was that serious … life goes on was his feeling.

AGplusone: wasn’t

AGplusone: Back to my question above–what does the sort of humor we’re discussing do?

Heinleinsmof: Actually, I wonder what power the IRS actually has — it isn’t part of the government, you know.

siannon secundus: Subvert?

AGplusone: perhaps

AGplusone: what else

rjjusu: Reduce

SAcademy: Sense of humor makes you remember whaat is said in the book

AGplusone: … and … what else?

siannon secundus: Take a different perspective

Heinleinsmof: And shakes up peoples’ preconceptions, too — not everybody is in the nuclear family with 2.3 kids, e

Heinleinsmof: etc

AGplusone: What do you mean by “reduce” Randy?

Heinleinsmof: I guess that falls within “subvert”

fgherman: I remember that the more you had read, the more references you’d catch in NOTB

rjjusu: Humor is both a salve and a weapon

DavidWrightSr: Maybe what David means is that such …

DavidWrightSr: jokes tend to make you bypass the real invidiual and replace with a sterotype

DavidWrightSr: invidual=individual

AGplusone: “salve” is a great part of what I’m getting at …

siannon secundus: Reduce to size

fgherman: Say archtype instead of steroetype

OakMan 7111: When I was working in theatre, I developed a theory:

DavidWrightSr: I’m not sure of the difference.

OakMan 7111: Humor suggests that problems can be solved – tragedy suggests they can’t

AGplusone: Except the monkey that was at the end of the line in SiaSL wasn’t laughing … — it does, doesn’t it,

AGplusone: Jon.

DavidWrightSr: As someone said Thursday, humor is a way of coping with problems.

siannon secundus: Archetype is like an original, and stereotype is reducing individuals to a *type*

AGplusone: Maybe it’s the archetypical way of coping?

rjjusu: when someone is reduced by humor, they often have to

rjjusu: face up to the fact that they are not what they seem.

SAcademy: What about the regimented heaven inJOB?

OakMan 7111: archetype is the cookie cutter – stereotype is just another cookie

siannon secundus: No humour in that heaven

OakMan 7111: I laughed constantly in the heaven sequence, jani

KultsiKN: Dis agree, Jani.

AGplusone: I thought there was … Pete and the Sister saw a lot of things as funny

siannon secundus: Oh nice def, Jon

OakMan 7111: πŸ™‚

siannon secundus: Funny to the reader, not to the participants, I meant πŸ™‚

DavidWrightSr: Class vs object ? (OOP)

AGplusone: And he used a bit of humor … “lemme talk to the Spook … ”

Heinleinsmof: Comedy deals with unions; tragedy with separations.

fgherman: Hit the nail on the head Jon

rjjusu: But remember, valid stereotypes have a survival value, while unquestioned ones do not.

AGplusone: which probably dealt with his frustrations.

Heinleinsmof: And “humor” is a reference to medieval medical theory.

Heinleinsmof: Reduces everything to types or humors

OakMan 7111: (I’m wg a paper on OOP right now, David)

OakMan 7111: writing a paper

AGplusone: anyone ever read a book of essays called Homo Ludens?

AGplusone: Ludens=playing

Heinleinsmof: That’s either “playing man” or gay guy with a coughdrop.

OakMan 7111: << resisting urge to ask if it was written by Smith Bros.

rjjusu: A Venusian named Smith?

AGplusone: Writer of that book had a theory that playing, including using humor, was how we essentially coped wit

AGplusone: with everything

OakMan 7111 has left the room.

rjjusu: 2nd Cousin to the Martian Smith

Heinleinsmof: Model-making; a very fundamental human activity.

rjjusu: But that’s what stereotypes are – Models

AGplusone: “The Play’s the thing”

Heinleinsmof: Maybe the humor in such play is in the area where the model doesn’t fit the reality.

OakMan 7111 has entered the room.

AGplusone: I’d agree it’s the place where the real world doesn’t fit the expectation …

Heinleinsmof: Like the guy who heard ?the map is not the territory,” so he shoveled a couple cubic yards of the ter

AGplusone: which is opposite, I think, to your view.

Heinleinsmof: ritory into his van.

rjjusu: Both models and stereotypes are shorthand versions of “reality”.

rjjusu: Good models/stereotypes have value, bad ones do not.

siannon secundus: so what’s “reality”, then?

rjjusu: Third door down from truth….

Heinleinsmof: experience.

OakMan 7111: We all stereotype to some extent as we deal with strangers, especially

siannon secundus: Hmmmm

AGplusone: [author of Homo Ludens, btw, was Johan Huizinga, German published in early 40s is Switzerland]

OakMan 7111 has left the room.

AGplusone: in Switz

Heinleinsmof: Schweiz

siannon secundus: (what is it, David?)

OakMan 7111 has entered the room.

AGplusone: A book of essays, ‘a study of the play element in culture’, Jani

siannon secundus: Thank you πŸ™‚

siannon secundus: Made a note ..

Heinleinsmof: Heinlein wrote quite an unexpectedly large amount of humor

rjjusu: Why unexpectedly?

DavidWrightSr: Why do you say, ‘unexpectedly’?

Heinleinsmof: We just don’t think of him as acomic writer — but he did write quite a bit.

AGplusone: Fact he did, I suggest, gets me to suggest that the ‘humor’ may be what Ginny suggested …

AGplusone: it gets people to remember what he wrote.

fgherman: Heinlein used humor conversationally,

AGplusone: ‘sugar makes the medicine go down’

fgherman: He didn’t set up comedic situations

Heinleinsmof: Also, it’s a good way to burst pretentions.

Heinleinsmof: I’m thinking of the characters in Double Star

AGplusone: For example, Bill, which ones and how … Dak Broadbent writing Acey Wheelright novels?

AGplusone: And POETRY!

OakMan 7111: A very funny book and Smythe is a wonderfully funny character

DavidWrightSr: I loved the family scene in ‘Rolling Stones’ when they twins got home late. Hazel was hilarious

Heinleinsmof: And — I can’t remember her name — Penny? Deflating Larry Smith’s self-pretentions.

OakMan 7111: Penny is right name

Doc4Kidz has entered the room.

OakMan 7111: Hi Doc

AGplusone: Hi, Barry …

fgherman: Hello

Doc4Kidz: hello everyone, I seem to have wandered into the Saturday chat.

SAcademy: I thought that the funniest part of Rolling Stones was the comprison of the development of the rockets

rjjusu: Doc, can you BOLD your type?

AGplusone: {And would you like a copy of the log thus far Barry}

Doc4Kidz: done

DavidWrightSr: Hi Doc. Welcome

Doc4Kidz: thanks, David

Doc4Kidz: (both Davids)

SAcademy: Hello, doctor.

DavidWrightSr: rockets vis a vis automobiles?

Doc4Kidz: Hello

OakMan 7111: Barry – I’m Jon Ogden when I am not a tree – the Society’s webman

DavidWrightSr: ‘three whole generations were slaves to them’ (autos that is)

SAcademy: It’s an essay which runs about two pages toward the start of the book

Doc4Kidz: nice to “meet” you Jon.

TAWN3 has entered the room.

OakMan 7111: likewise

AGplusone: Hi, Tawn …

fgherman: Hello Tawn

Heinleinsmof: Goodness, we can almost hold a Board meeting!

SAcademy: A digression while they’re shopping for a ship.

TAWN3: Hello everyone

rjjusu: I’m about to sacrifice a goat to have hellfire and brimstone rain down on AOHell

AGplusone: πŸ™‚

OakMan 7111: Randy – I have a very sharp silver knife I’d gladly let you borrow

AGplusone: Okay, it’s about 55 past the hour, I suggest we take ten, think about what comes next

AGplusone: and resume at 5 past the hour

rjjusu: I thought the discussion about rocketship development showed great engineering insight

AGplusone: Dave, you have the conn … maybe someone will send a log to Tawn while I water Bob

AGplusone: afk

DenvToday has entered the room.

rjjusu: Lookin’ like a full house!

DavidWrightSr: Good crowd tonight. Thursday was a little light.

AGplusone: Hi, Ron, doing a break until 5 past now … free chat til then

siannon secundus: Randy, sacrifices are my bailiwick, dear πŸ™‚

DenvToday: Hello everybody!

DenvToday: Thanks David.

fgherman: Hello Ron RogerPilkey has left the room.

fgherman: Guess gas prices have kept everyone home this week-end

rjjusu: Yes dear, but I’m getting to the point where I so want to learn …… and practice.

DenvToday: Hello fg. Good to see you today.

fgherman: Thanks

KultsiKN: How much in the US, Felicia?

fgherman: Around $1.89 / gal here in Minneapolis

fgherman: whcih is highest it’s ever been here

Heinleinsmof: Send some of that to California.

Heinleinsmof: It’s about 2.18 here.

siannon secundus: Yes Randy … classes are being held, I’ll let you know πŸ™‚

DavidWrightSr: I’m lucky. Here in the south, regular is around 1.47, but I’ve heard that some midwest

DavidWrightSr: places are well over 2.00

rjjusu: Message are too long. AOL are too stupid…

KultsiKN: A quick calculation gives ours about $4.50/gal πŸ™

fgherman: I’m home with a cold

DavidWrightSr: You noticed the 100 character limitation I gather πŸ™‚

AGplusone: I actually looked for Bob to water. found him sleeping in the clothes dryer … !!!

rjjusu: Kind of …… wasn’t sure where the breakpoint was. Must be a server “upgrade”

Heinleinsmof: That’s new — it used to be about 450 characters

AGplusone: he’s found a new hideout

SAcademy: Anyone think that those gas prices will overturn the government?

fgherman: Ibuprofen has *finally* kicked in

Heinleinsmof: Give Bob a lint trap.

rjjusu: Dave, he’ll only do that as long as no one turns the dryer *ON*

fgherman: From your mouth to G-d’s ear…


fgherman: Sen Jeffords did what he could.

siannon secundus: better the dryer than the washer ..

TAWN3: Americans are upset about it but stupid, estimated record auto travel this weekend. People will pay.

AGplusone: I gotta break him of that habit … afraid someone will actually close the door on him

Doc4Kidz: what, double crossed the voters who elected him as a Republican?

Doc4Kidz: was that admirable?

AGplusone: up to his voters, isn’t it?

rjjusu: Tell Bob to put an “Occupied” sign on the door when he goes in….

AGplusone: Right!

fgherman: Yes, he voted his principles and that’s what the voters on Vermont want him to do

SAcademy: They say that Vermont is different.

Doc4Kidz: they already voted for the Rep, then he changed him mind. Do that before the election if you’re hone

Doc4Kidz: st

siannon secundus: Did they vote for the man or the party?

rjjusu: Depends who you ask

TAWN3: ??????

fgherman has left the room.

Doc4Kidz: some vote party. He misrepresneted himslef to those voters.

AGplusone: They published a chart in the LA Times listing all those in modern times

AGplusone: Had one who crossed and then went back after a few years

OakMan 7111: He took the Republican national Committee’s money and didn’t stay bought – that makes him a bad

TAWN3: They did shorten msg size!

OakMan 7111: politician in RAH’s terms, doesn’t it?

Doc4Kidz: got nothing against the guy. Maybe he does have principles, but…

Doc4Kidz: not kosher that way

rjjusu: Yes, Tawn, and it’s about to drive me crazy

fgherman has entered the room.

OakMan 7111: me, too – suddenly this is like AOL, not AIM

AGplusone: He’s a good example about what RAH writes in How to be a Politician … the Hughes event in California

siannon secundus: But, did he not use the system to change the balance of power?

AGplusone: when Hughes’ CoS didn’t bother to have lunch or even chat with the governor, Hiram Johnson

AGplusone: So did Johnson … Hughes didn’t win California

rjjusu: Actually, I’m not surprised that this happened, because the six sigma members of both parties

rjjusu: are driving away the center.

fgherman: It just shows that Trent Lott has no people skills.

AGplusone: Look at Campbell 6 or 8 years ago … went from Dem to Rep in Colorado

Doc4Kidz: again, nothing particularly against the guy, but not especially admirable, either.

fgherman: Sorry to have opened this can of worms

Heinleinsmof: There is so little substantive difference between the two parties that one can only assume a switch l

SAcademy: Colorado is a swing state.

Heinleinsmof: like that is for personal advantage.

AGplusone: Well, we’re back on again … anyway, Felicia …

fgherman: But I’m no fan of the President-Select

AGplusone: back to humor, Heinlein, Willis and Jerome …

Heinleinsmof: And speaking about Willis — how about the Bouncer in Red Planet?

Doc4Kidz: he could have voted his concience without changing parties at this specific time.

AGplusone: Anyone besides me read Dooms Day Book by Willis, not by William the Bastard?

Doc4Kidz: (ok, enough from me on this)

fgherman: not yet

TAWN3: SAcademy, if people want more affordable gas, they will force govts, including local ones,

AGplusone: Recommend it strongly!

TAWN3: , to stop regulating production and distribution so much

SAcademy: Willis was the result of us getting a tape recorder/

OakMan 7111: Moliere wrote an essay in which he suggested that we laughed whenever we saw human beings

TAWN3: (What I tried to send before.)

OakMan 7111: acting like machines

AGplusone: Was it Moliere who described man as a featherless biped?

OakMan 7111: which is pretty much a nother defintion of stereotype

AGplusone: I.e., a plucked chicken

OakMan 7111: I thot that was Dogbrt, David

AGplusone: Or was that Moliere making a joke about Aristotle?

rjjusu: Stereotype or someone with a “word with ways”?

AGplusone: Who so defined it.

AGplusone: The ‘humor’ in Dooms Day Book is the only thing that keeps you from going nuts reading it, if you’re

OakMan 7111: The example he used was that we laugh at the man who slips on a bannana peel —

OakMan 7111: if he was walking along not watching where he was going

AGplusone: paying attention to the plight of this grad student sent back to the Black Plague.

Heinleinsmof: WAsn’t that 150 years after the Domesday book?

AGplusone: Yes, at least

AGplusone: Domesday Book by William started when he consolidated his newly-won kingdom

AGplusone: Black Plague hit England about 1248 or so, IIRC

Heinleinsmof: The big plague was 1360-66

Heinleinsmof: They had minor plagues about every 30 years for 200 years.

rjjusu: So how did a Martian bouncer get a book published on earth?

fgherman: Definitely a 14th century thing

AGplusone: You’re right, Ginny … the Black Plague was 13XX

AGplusone: So it’s 250 at least

rjjusu: I mean, did Willis just send an interplanetary fax?

Heinleinsmof: E-mail

Heinleinsmof: We’re getting Martian e-mail capability, you know.

Heinleinsmof: Sometimes I feel I’m living in a Greg Egan novel

SAcademy: Drudge reported that.

rjjusu: Not through AOL you aren’t – you know how long those martian words can be….

AGplusone: Are there any stories by RAH that anyone can think of that the ‘humor’ is the only thing that keeps

AGplusone: your reading because the subject matter described is otherwise so distressing that you might not in

AGplusone: the wrong mood keep reading?

Heinleinsmof: “My Object All Sublime,” “Our Fair City.”

DavidWrightSr: Never!!

Heinleinsmof: “Jerry Was a Man.”

rjjusu: I finally got a copy of My Object All Sublime last week.

SAcademy: Why bother?

AGplusone: I think Jerry is an excellent example!

DavidWrightSr: OK. I admit that there are some of his works that I haven’t read 30 times πŸ™‚

Heinleinsmof: It’s definitely one of those you have to laugh because the subject is so worth crying over.

AGplusone: Slavery of sentient animals and you kill them when they wear out, despite their pleas that they can

rjjusu: I’m a completist, and like to make my own judgements, but as usual, RAH was more correct than me….

AGplusone: still work … still think, love, etc.

AGplusone: And they voice those pleas to you in the “King’s English” ….

DenvToday: I

Heinleinsmof: Did you get the magazine version?

DenvToday: oops

Heinleinsmof: With the damon knight illustration?

rjjusu: No, I got the reprint version in Beyond the End of Time

rjjusu: Edited by Frederik Pohl

Heinleinsmof: I have trouble remembering which one of the three “stinkeroos” didn’t get re-collected. I believe it

Heinleinsmof: must have been “Pied Piper.”

AGplusone: Another other stories that must have ‘humor’ to be at least tolerable, depending on your mood?

Heinleinsmof: “The Man Who Travelled in Elephants.”

SAcademy: That’s crying stuff not laughing!

Heinleinsmof: In “The Menace from Earth,” the humorous situations make us like Holly.

AGplusone: The ‘tragic’ in Elephants is not the man dying, but his having lost his wife … pathos, ending in

Heinleinsmof: But the humor gentles the tears.

DenvToday: mof, very good point. I love that story…so beautifully written. But still, the tears always come.

AGplusone: comedy!

AGplusone: Comedy because he dies!

fgherman: I’ve never read the last page without tears

AGplusone: And joins her again …

Heinleinsmof: Comedy deals with unions and reunions.

Heinleinsmof: (I mean comedy as a literary form)

AGplusone: I agree, that one and “The Long Watch” Felicia

Heinleinsmof: But “The Long Watch” is a tragedy — deals with separations.

Heinleinsmof: Same for “Green Hills”

Heinleinsmof: Comic catharsis wouldn’t have done anything for those two stories.

DavidWrightSr: And ‘Tale of the Adopted Daughter’

AGplusone: Something happens in “The Long Watch” particularly that deals with what comedy does, same for “G Hill”

AGplusone: and Tale of the Adopted Daughter

siannon secundus: IWFNE is a separation, at the end ..

rjjusu: Yes, “The Long Watch” is the one that always gets me, when I read it. But it is a great story…

rjjusu: Greater love hath no man ……

TAWN3: What is that David?

AGplusone: Recall the moment in The Long Watch where it doesn’t matter to him …?

OakMan 7111: The three go together somewhere, janni

AGplusone: where he’s at peace with his fate?

siannon secundus: Not sure, that’s what always upsets about it, Jon

TAWN3: How is that like comedy

rjjusu: The balm of gilead – acceptance

TAWN3: ?

AGplusone: Same thing with Rhysling … “This is Rhysling ON Watch, stand by to record”

Heinleinsmof: I don’t think that’s comc — it’s tragic transcendence.

Heinleinsmof: “a man’s a man for a’ that.”

TAWN3: Heroism maybe.

Heinleinsmof: the n

AGplusone: Those two portions are specifically what I was referring to when I mentioned what Jerome did in that

OakMan 7111: If there really is an afterlife, then everything’s a comedy – and the funniest thing is:

Heinleinsmof: noble aspect of gallantry.

OakMan 7111: we don’t know it

AGplusone: bit of the poetry of the Night, …

TAWN3: The Grand illusion


OakMan 7111: I think thats where I’m going, yes

DavidWrightSr: ‘ we don’t know it’ Heinlein said something like that in ‘Beyond this Horizon’

DavidWrightSr: when Mordan and Felix expected to die.

OakMan 7111: I think every original thought I think I have turns out to be a rephrase of RAH

TAWN3: RAH said it a lot, in a lot of places.

DenvToday: Oak, perhaps that’s the “moral” in Job.

AGplusone: Right, Jon … the biggest joke in Jurgen:ACOJ is when the god invents heaven and hell and populates

AGplusone: it with God and Satan, the angels and devils, to satisfy Jurgen’s grandmother.

AGplusone: … and for no, IMI, NO, other reason … whimsy

Heinleinsmof: There’s a good “and that reminds me…” to that story in The Silver Stallion. Donander becomes a god

Heinleinsmof: in the norse pantheon by mistake.

siannon secundus: That’s in Hoag, too, to an extent

Heinleinsmof: Yes. I can’t help but see the Heaven in Job as a combination of Captain Stormfield and Jurgen.

DenvToday: Appropos of absolutely nothing, I watched “The Right Stuff” the other day with friends. The…

AGplusone: Right … the heaven Cabell created wasn’t all that funny … the one Twain did was hilarious.

AGplusone: There’s RAH choosing humor again.

OakMan 7111: I saw some of it as what was preached at Covenant Methodist Church while I was growing up and RAH

DenvToday: …character played by Royal Dano sings The Prayer for Travelers several times when pilots are…

OakMan 7111: saying “be careful what you wish for.”

Heinleinsmof: Much the same kind of humor as in Captain STormfield.

DenvToday: ….killed. I kept thinking of RAH’s addition to the prayer.

Heinleinsmof: It was a wonderful verse addition, wasn’t it.

DenvToday: Indeed!

AGplusone: The humor makes it stick in your mind (it is a wonderful addition) …

AGplusone: Jane, if you’ve read the posts, questioned one thing about Jerome … whether his poetic passages

AGplusone: were serious. anyone have a thought on that?

AGplusone: Here we have a low-brow writer catering to a low-brow audience … what is all that poetry doing in

AGplusone: his book?

AGplusone: Simply Victorian sentimentality?

AGplusone: Anyone?

Heinleinsmof: Partly it was the magazine conventions of the day. Remember this was before low-brow literature real

Heinleinsmof: ly took off.

Heinleinsmof: Pop culture dates from about 1895, with the start of Argosy.

AGplusone: But … Isn’t sticking a florid passage into a prosaic book an attention-getting device, too.

AGplusone: Just as humor is … ”

Heinleinsmof: Well — it is humor, playing with the distinction between naturalistic prose writing and florid poeti

Heinleinsmof: writing.

AGplusone: Jerome didn’t put one in every chapter … some of it is serious, however, I’d maintain.

AGplusone: For example, clearly, that bit about King John signing the Magna Carta … inserted for schoolchildren

Heinleinsmof: CAbell did that — he called it “contrapuntal” writing. And of course, rAH did that, too, in TEFL.

AGplusone: And the example Jane picked, the bit about the worn out pauper mother drowning herself …

siannon secundus: I have to go, ladies and gentlemen – thank you for a fascinating discussion, as always πŸ™‚

AGplusone: totally exhausted and unwilling to go herself to the ‘poor house’ …

OakMan 7111: bye jani

siannon secundus: Goodnight, all ..

KultsiKN: See ya, Jani

DenvToday: Bye siannon!

Doc4Kidz: goodnight. I’m going to go, too. Bye, and thanks.

AGplusone: It is pathos, perhaps even approches bathos, but I think he’s seriously concerned about here.

siannon secundus has left the room.

Heinleinsmof: Depends on what you mean by “serious.” It sounds more as though Jerome periodically launched into

Heinleinsmof: set pieces

Doc4Kidz has left the room.

fgherman: g-bye

markjmills has entered the room.

fgherman: Hello

AGplusone: HI, Mark how’s NYC today?

Heinleinsmof: Even though the set piece may be perfectly serious in itself, it produces a humorous effect by contra

Heinleinsmof: st

DenvToday: Hello!

markjmills: Hi, all — missed you in the last month.

AGplusone: Yes, it does, doesn’t it, even more ‘attention-getting’ therefore?

markjmills: Hah — I’m in Florida, soaking up sun…

Heinleinsmof: URK — can you get rid of the gray background, Mark

TAWN3: Bye Jani

fgherman: More like soaking up sunset at this hour

markjmills: Better?

KultsiKN: Bold it.

Heinleinsmof: Better — and would you bold? Thanks

DenvToday: I’ve always found soaking up gin to be more productive πŸ™‚

markjmills: Hmmmmm….

markjmills: There we go…

fgherman: That’ll work

markjmills: So what’s on topic — still humour?

Heinleinsmof: Arrrrh! — bite the parrot, maytee

AGplusone: Still humor, Mark …

markjmills: Gin? Someone mention gin?

OakMan 7111: I’m more of a rummy, myself

markjmills: Any port in a storm…

Heinleinsmof: Gin and rummy have been known to go togheter…

DenvToday: Oak, I can certainly respect that.

Heinleinsmof: I sherry your sentiments.

markjmills: Tequila’s more appropriate down here.

OakMan 7111: I wonder which Jani likes, I suppose we canasta.

KultsiKN: Both are known sources of questinable humor.

markjmills: Bad puns get lashes! God ones get other things.

AGplusone: On humor, Mark, what single thing about RAH’s humor sticks in your craw or mind …

OakMan 7111: The only good pun is a dead pun

AGplusone: or we could try going around the room …. [watchout] …

fgherman: I’ll abstain from this

markjmills: Hmmm…I’m rather uncritical of the Master on the humor side — I tend to enjoy him even at his corni

OakMan 7111: “Well, just don’t make a hobbit of it”

markjmills: Ooops…limit on sentences?

KMurphy165 has entered the room.

OakMan 7111: Hello KM

fgherman: Hello

KMurphy165: Greetings.

markjmills: Hi

DenvToday: There is one title (short story) that always gives me a belly laugh. Any guesses?

DenvToday: Hi KM!

markjmills: W Also Walk Dogs?

Heinleinsmof: Gentlemen, be seated?

DenvToday: Yes!

OakMan 7111:

TAWN3: Yes

DenvToday: Gold star for mof!

markjmills: That’s a great one.

AGplusone: Gbs? George Bernard Shaw …

DenvToday: mark, also a great title.

AGplusone: Wonder if that was intentional?

Heinleinsmof: Oh, I’m sure it was.

AGplusone: … naw …

AGplusone: Dave Wright (warning was given) what’s the most salient point about RAH’s humor sticks with you?

OakMan 7111: I shall not give in to temptation…I shall not…

markjmills: Wilde said do…

markjmills: Fear No Evil, man!

AGplusone: Randy Jost is up next ….

rjjusu: I thought Yoda said Do or do not, there is no try

TAWN3: Yes, there is lots of humor in that.

DenvToday: rjj, you must remember that Yoda had a man’s hand up his um…back.

fgherman: And Miss Piggy’s voice

rjjusu: Let’s not resurrect that IRS thread …..

AGplusone: Assuming Dave is watering his lawn, you’re up Randy …. πŸ™‚

DenvToday: Very true.

AGplusone: Ron is up after Randy …

rjjusu: I think the thing I like most about Heinlein’s humor is its “naturalness” … it doesn’t seem forced

AGplusone: Then Mark, then Jon Ogden …

rjjusu: and it always fits the situation.

AGplusone: By fits the situation, give an example, please …

rjjusu: There are several touching, yet humorous moments in Double Star

rjjusu: Even when Lorenzo is in funny situations, you can sense the man behind the mask in his responses.

Heinleinsmof: Gentles, there is a matter I must take care of, so I take my leave of you. Take care.

rjjusu: The comments about Martians always smelling like Penny’s perfume, etc.

OakMan 7111: Bye Bill

AGplusone: The politcian who figures doing what a politician always does … stop and kiss babies … can’t be

AGplusone: wrong?

Heinleinsmof: Ciao.

TAWN3: Bye Bill

Heinleinsmof has left the room.

rjjusu: CYA Bill

SAcademy: Nite, Bill

AGplusone: ‘staying in character’ so to speak?

rjjusu: I think so, but more than that.

DavidWrightSr: Made you feel part of the family

rjjusu: He is really trying to reconcile who he is, with who he seems.

AGplusone: My dad figured that stimulating my cerebral cortex by causing flow of blood away from my butt …

DenvToday: lol

DavidWrightSr: Ignore last. I was trying to describe RAH’s humor. ‘casualness’. Made you part of family

AGplusone: He is … reconciling …

AGplusone: what he admires with what he was, he obviously admired his father and figures he really doesn’t

AGplusone: measure up to dad.

rjjusu: When a politician is representing others, where does the politician

rjjusu: stop and the person begin?

AGplusone: Where he stops being Larry Smith and becomes Bonforte?

AGplusone: Is that a joke in the book … or humor?

rjjusu: Yes, especially if your constituents want one thing, but who you ARE says No

markjmills: Sorry — shoot, phone call, BBS.

AGplusone: see you back soon Mark

OakMan 7111: bye mark

rjjusu: Not sure it is a joke, or just the many layers of excellent writing.

DenvToday: We talked about “contrapuntal” before. That’s one aspect of RAH’s humor I love.

rjjusu: Looks like Denv has received the ‘punt and is starting his run….

AGplusone: Ron, please give it a shot: what sticks out the most for you?

DenvToday: For instance, The Man Who Was Too Lazy to Fail in TEFL…

AGplusone: uh-huh … /ga

DenvToday: We have that in contrast to the poignant episodes in the book

DenvToday: Even when Lazarus is at his lowest…close to suiciding…

DenvToday: There’s always a smart-aleck quality lurking just below the surface.

DavidWrightSr: When it was written, Juan’s comment on having to leave his earrings at home was hilarious. …..

DavidWrightSr: Nothing funny today

AGplusone: Much like Zebbie in Number and Harris in 3Men … Zac is funny in “If this Goes on … ”

AGplusone: So is Smitty in Red Planet …

AGplusone: in as serious a matter as hiding their guns from the schoolmaster

rjjusu: Ron, what part of Denver are you in? I tried to send you a private message, but you are unavailable

DenvToday: Really? I’m sorry. I didn’t realize that.

DenvToday: I’

OakMan 7111: Heinlein usually centers his humor around characters that we love. “Tex” is much funnier than

DenvToday: oop

OakMan 7111: Stinky Burke

DenvToday: I’ll fix that.

rjjusu: I just realized that the Education degree that Zeb received may have come from USU

AGplusone: Is there anyone particularly funny in Cat ?

rjjusu: that explains a lot. πŸ™‚

DenvToday: I’ve fixed the privacy preferences. Thanks for pointing that out.

DavidWrightSr: Lots of funny in Cat. putting limburger in the ac.

DavidWrightSr: for example.

AGplusone: Besides Marcy and her hemroids … the traffic controller with a bad temper …

AGplusone: not that I think of it.

AGplusone: now

KMurphy165: USU?

OakMan 7111: I don’t think of Friday as being very funny either.

AGplusone: Tawn, you want to give it a shot?

DenvToday: Can any of us forget that Lummox has been “raising John Thomases” for a long time?

rjjusu: Utah State University, in Logan, UT, where I am and where the beginning of NOTB takes place

DenvToday: Star Best, of course.

TAWN3: Well, I’ve been thinking about it.

AGplusone: Friday is funny only if you get the final joke: tend to your own garden, just as in Candide.

KMurphy165: The court scenes om Star Beast are fast moving and funny. Good command of pace and timing.

TAWN3: I don’t think of Heinlein as humor. It is strange,

DavidWrightSr: Some of the ads in Baton Rouge? were hilarious as I recall

TAWN3: Because I see a lot of things being pointed out,

TAWN3: Yes, Star Beast has a lot of laughs in it.

TAWN3: And other things

AGplusone: … and … go on, Tawn, please.

TAWN3: But in general, to me,

TAWN3: the bigger message always is more important.

TAWN3: Now that I think of it, the one place I do equate RAH with humor,

TAWN3: is in court room scenes. Those always give me a great laugh

rjjusu: Humor greases the message? Makes it easier to swallow the pig?

AGplusone: But is humor an adjunct to communicating the ‘bigger message’?

TAWN3: and I can’t think of anybody who does it better.

AGplusone: [courtroom scenes are funny to me too]

OakMan 7111: Why did RAH feel he had to label JOB? was he afraid we wouldn’t get the joke?

rjjusu: Probably ‘cuz you don’t have to be there anymore!

KMurphy165: Humor is always the medicine to make the tragic easier to take.

AGplusone: but lawyer jokes that lawyers tell each other are like doctor jokes: require long winded explanations

TAWN3: Yes, the court room scens

TAWN3: From Star Beast to IWFNE (judges) to SiaSL

TAWN3: which is definitely the best

TAWN3: This is because RAH truly understood the nature of society and

KMurphy165: IWFNE?

TAWN3: and the legal and political beast.

rjjusu: I Will Fear No Evil

TAWN3: Anyway, that’s my take on it.

KMurphy165: Thanks

TAWN3: Done

AGplusone: Oscar makes a few soldier jokes in Glory Road, doesn’t he? Tell us whether you think them funny?

KMurphy165: I think you have something, there Tawn.

KMurphy165: The court scenes are about the fate of some character that hinges the plot, and yet

KMurphy165: the humor makes it more palatable to read.

rjjusu: I think so, and very true to form. Solders have to have a sense of humor, or they will break

AGplusone: [‘fer example: the Ian Hayes joke about the departments]

DavidWrightSr: Even the court in HSSWT. remember the monkey that did a flip?

AGplusone: The ‘joke’ about the Lieutenant being passed over, and going out and getting killed … right next to

AGplusone: Oscar who takes the bolo on his face.

TAWN3: Yes, the judges (Supreme Court?) in IWFNE. Eunice goes to visit them. Remember?

rjjusu: Combat has always been theater of the absurd

TAWN3: Yes, the leagl scenes are almost always the best, and often funny.

AGplusone: Oscar coming down the cliff while the beasts await dinner from above …

AGplusone: manna from Heaven?

TAWN3: Although I think of HSSWT final trial as moving, not funny. “Go ahead,

OakMan 7111: I need to go take care all

rjjusu: See you!

TAWN3: deatroy our sun, we’ll build another!”

OakMan 7111 has left the room.

TAWN3: Defiant and inspirational at the same time.

DenvToday: I’ve been thinking. “An He Built a Crooked House” is hilarious.

DenvToday: And

TAWN3: RAH understood reality, that’s all.

AGplusone: But the way Iunio treats Kip is funny … stereotypical …

AGplusone: and serious …

AGplusone: What does he say, get the ones who I only wound?

AGplusone: [that might be your speed]

AGplusone: Kultsi … out there?

TAWN3: Crooked House is the magic one?

TAWN3: Good humor in there also.

rjjusu: yes

DenvToday: Yes, the tesseract.

KMurphy165: To mix in all of these elements that define being alive and human…

AGplusone: Okay, you’re up next KM … πŸ™‚

KMurphy165: Then the amazing insight to cleverly put that into plot and dialog.

AGplusone: what do you find sticks out?

KultsiKN: I find many places that are humorous, but…

rjjusu: military volunteer

AGplusone: Kultsi first … then KM, ga Kultsi

DenvToday: I particularly like the matronly woman in it. You just want to smack her with a dead fish.

KultsiKN: apparently, because of cultural differences I can’t get them all…

fgherman: Gotta go.

fgherman: Good night all

DenvToday: Bye fg !

fgherman has left the room.

SAcademy: Nite, Felicia

TAWN3: Bye Felicia

AGplusone: Okay, what do you get … of what you get, Kultsi, what translates?

KultsiKN: the most subtle ones do necessitate an understanding of the US society…

KultsiKN: which I haven’t.

DenvToday: wb

KultsiKN: Much of the humor is pretty universal, though.

DavidWrightSr: Sorry, I dropped out. can someone post me what I missed to make the log complete.

AGplusone: I can, David …

DavidWrightSr: Thanks

AGplusone: Okay, KM, you’re up if you wish: what sticks out as most impressive about RAH humor to you?

AGplusone: And you’re up next Dave πŸ™‚

KMurphy165: This is a moment when I wish AIM wasn’t limiting response length…

AGplusone: LOL … go ahead … we’ll wait ’til you finish

KMurphy165: First, the body of work of Mr. Heinlein is of greater significance to me than holy writ…

KMurphy165: Then I think of how he knew enough of what it means to be human…

rjjusu: =-O

AGplusone: πŸ™‚

KMurphy165: you mix in the everyday kind of humor with the other facets of being alife and humor…

KMurphy165: I’m amazed at that talent and ability to distill it down to plot and dialog…

KMurphy165: Consider how humor weaves all through “The Rolling Stone”

KMurphy165: There are little bits and snippets stuck in every where…

KMurphy165: The Cat Who Walks Through Walls – the landing sequence = the same thing

KMurphy165: It all goes to make the characters more alive

KMurphy165: and easy to care about. Building towards the climax.

AGplusone: Does it add an ethos to the message?

KMurphy165: I think that is very true.

KMurphy165: It is all too easy to preach to the choir.

AGplusone: I.e., a heightened authority to the author’s voice?

rjjusu: Almost Godlike?

KMurphy165: But to convey the author’s point in such a way as to make the audience wanting to hear more

AGplusone: Because he doesn’t take out the leven of humor … does it make the preaching easier to take?

KMurphy165: is simple mastery.

AGplusone: Type “/ga” when you’re done, KM … so we know πŸ˜‰

KMurphy165: The purpose of the humor is just that to make the sermon palatable and juicy.

KMurphy165: Ok on the “/ga”

rjjusu: I don’t think of it as being preaching. Rather, “Here’s a thought, what do YOU think?”

KMurphy165: /ga

AGplusone: Ah, but some do … Randy, and would you agree that they’ve little sense of humor?

AGplusone: 😎

TAWN3: A lot of people have told me they don’t like Heinlein because he is always preaching

rjjusu: About as much sense of humor as a box of rocks….

TAWN3: From my POV, that is exactly what I do like!

TAWN3: I agree with the message though.

rjjusu: I think Heinlein would say, “Don’t agree with me because I’m me, but rather, because you have thought

AGplusone: The preaching? I like it to, but I also like the levening … it makes the medicine go down even if

AGplusone: I’m not in the mood.

rjjusu: about it and you believe it to be right.”

AGplusone: Okay, we’re about 30 minutes past due for a break … why don’t we do that and when we come back

AGplusone: I have some announcments …

rjjusu: I never saw Heinlein as a shepard, leading the sheep.

AGplusone: back at 30 past the hour, please. Dave, got the conn?

DavidWrightSr: Who me?

TAWN3: Because the sheep don’t understand what he is saying, thats why.

AGplusone: Who else?

rjjusu: I have a couple of things to over with you Ag, when we are done this evening.

rjjusu: go over

AGplusone: Okay … I’m going to find my little teapot … burgundy flavored.

AGplusone: afk til 30 past the hour.

rjjusu: Oh, Tawn, that’s Bah-ahh-ahh-d.

TAWN3: πŸ™‚

TAWN3: He makes fun of the sheep all the time, or other times just

TAWN3: points them out.

TAWN3: The Earthside characters in “It’s Great to be Back” come immediately to mind.

rjjusu: Yes, but I think he still likes the sheep….. where else you you get lambchops?

DavidWrightSr: I am mostly lurking because I can’t really treat RAH’s humor as a separate thing. It all …

DavidWrightSr: seems to go together for me


KMurphy165: I’ve tried to squeeze this into AIM space 3 times πŸ™

KultsiKN: Dave, you are not the only one in that.

rjjusu: I agree, David, it is a very integrated presentation that we see in Heinlein’s writings.

KMurphy165: I can’t help but to think at times…

TAWN3: Yes, it is horrible how they limit length now.

KMurphy165: RAH was trying to get a point across to us.

AGplusone: I agree, it’s hard, but sometimes looking at a thing hard to separate discovers a few things …

KMurphy165: It seems to me that Mrs. Heinlein would have insight on that

TAWN3: That’s why I had a hard time at first thinking of Heinlein as humor.

TAWN3: Although I immediately can think of others as having a humorous side, such as Van Vogt.

AGplusone: I think of RAH’s writings as essentially ‘good humored’ even when he’s at his most angry … IWFNE for

AGplusone: example.

SAcademic: I am afrtaid that for forty yeaars I misunderstood my husband. He was always saying that I had a sens

SAcademic: e of humor.

TAWN3: rjusu said: where else you you get lambchops

TAWN3: Well In Farnham’s Freehold……..

SAcademic: I’ve learned a lot about his humor to night.

rjjusu: Lambchops, not Long-porkchops…..

KMurphy165: Why would you say that you misunderstood him?

AGplusone: seriously, Ginny, or are we all wet?

SAcademic: He frequently asked me whether he was a “funny man.” I would say, “Yes, dear.” But I missed the poin

SAcademic: No, I think you’re right now. I missed it altogether.

AGplusone: That’s one hell of a compliment, Thank you from all of us.

KultsiKN: Second.

DenvToday: Indeed!

KMurphy165: second

SAcademic: Sorry to be doing a true confession.

TAWN3: Yes!

AGplusone: Well, it being 30 past the hour … let me discuss a couple things.

SAcademic: It’s really out of place in this meeting.

AGplusone: 1. Next meeting topic: Door Into Summer — no, it’s not — and “predictions”

TAWN3: Anything you say is in place here Ginny.

rjjusu: This is YOUR meeting too!

DavidWrightSr: Not at all. It’s wonderful that you share with us.

KMurphy165: Anything Mrs. Heinlein says is most appropriate

AGplusone: 2. I want to discuss this cutting Saturday meetings. I’m willing to host Saturdays indefinitely,

AGplusone: provided, we get a few volunteers at the year goes on to relieve me occasionally …

AGplusone: and maybe grow back into the nominate-theme or story where new hosts try the thing out

DavidWrightSr: I would imagine that we can manage that. Even I could try sometimes.

rjjusu: I can help out some, Dave, after we get our moving and settling in done.

AGplusone: So I’ll do it … ‘hoping’ as I say, and don’t be too surprised if Zim doesn’t ask you to volunteer as

AGplusone: the year goes by. Thank you.

AGplusone: 3. Connie Willis visit … met her, she’s very nice and very bright, but I do want to emphasize one

AGplusone: thing: we need to read a couple of her books. I’d suggest the two we’ve discussed

AGplusone: before she comes: Dooms Day Book and To Say Nothing of the Dog. both won Hugos, so we should read them

AGplusone: anyway … can I get a committment we’ll do that before I start wheels in motion?

rjjusu: When did you want to have her “here”?

AGplusone: I was a little embarassed with the Smith visit because of (a) few turned out and (b) few had read ….

AGplusone: within next two months, maybe soon.

rjjusu: Just asking, because the next two months I’m going to be earlobe deep to a tall giraffe in moving …

AGplusone: And if we ask her to expend six hours, we ought to have at least read her more important works.

DenvToday: I’ll read those, and more.

rjjusu: I agree, and it IS a responsibility of ours.

KultsiKN: Furrin books are a bit hard to come by in my neck of woods.

AGplusone: That’s all we ask … and they’re both excellent books.

AGplusone: Could you check, K … they did both win Hugos, one two years ago

SAcademic: I’d like to, but—

AGplusone: I know, Ginny, impossible for you …

SAcademic: Yes.

KultsiKN: I’ll check, of course.

AGplusone: but helping out on the posts, even if you can make both meetings will make her feel wanted, and if we

AGplusone: want to have ‘guests’ we’d better do better than we did with Smith …

DenvToday: I believe Willis has several books on tape.

SAcademic: Robert and I used to read Three Men in a Boat to each other.

TAWN3: Ah! Great solution Denver!

AGplusone: and note how nicely we picked up the Rosenburgs after their chat …

SAcademic: I willl try to get some of those.

AGplusone: They both visit and I don’t know about you all, but I think that helps our chats a lot.

rjjusu: I have to say that I enjoyed the Smith visit, but you are right, not much discussion about his works

AGplusone: ’nuff said … on point three.

SAcademic: Yes, it does. Felicia is adelightful

AGplusone: Smith was a problem because so much of his work is Out of print

rjjusu: However, I’ve bought 8 of Joel’s books since his visit.

rjjusu: And found a couple of Smith’s this past week.

DavidWrightSr: I keep looking in the used stores.

AGplusone: so have I, nearly … since it was announced he’d visit

AGplusone: and they are decent books

DavidWrightSr: It gave me two additional writers that I can read. So much of what is out there today I can’t stand.

AGplusone: Okay, me: I’ll answer my own question. what sticks out the most to me … the epigramatic way he

AGplusone: presented humor, not only classic epigrams such as the Sayings of Laz but whenever he intrudes a humor

AGplusone: into a story … get in, get it done, get out … now back to the story

AGplusone: You smile, go on, and look forward to the next sally

AGplusone: the next wry smile it’s going to cause you to make

AGplusone: and, generally, the tolerant way he treats his objects of humor … not scathing usually, but resigned

rjjusu: You make it sound like a job, instead of an extension of a person’s personality.

AGplusone: to the weaknesses of humans

AGplusone: It probably was … but I’d bet he got better at telling jokes the older he got

SAcademic: Yes, that’s ttue

rjjusu: I’d like to think that the person we saw expressed on paper is the person we would meet in life.

AGplusone: ‘timing

SAcademic: Oh, yes, he was great at that!

AGplusone: Okay, Dave … want to take a further shot at it?

AGplusone: we got ten minutes, otherwise, free chat … to the end of the hour.

rjjusu: What were you charging before?

DenvToday: You must admit, the way “To Sail Beyond the Sunset” starts is nothing if not funny.

AGplusone: Standard lawyer’s fee, $300 hour

rjjusu: Must be bargin weekend, because of the holiday.

AGplusone: [I told you lawyer’s jokes to other lawyers require a lot of explanation]

rjjusu: One question for Mrs. H – would you say that Robert had a “wry” sense of humor in everyday life, ….

DavidWrightSr: I can’t add anything.

rjjusu: or a playful sense of humor?

SAcademic: Playful, rather than wry.

TAWN3: Interesting.

AGplusone: practical jokes?

DavidWrightSr: ‘loose slips lose ships’

SAcademic: Why, Tawn

rjjusu: That makes sense, given the way he uses the language sometimes.

SAcademic: No, no practical jokes. I never knew him to do that.

TAWN3: Well, because I am thinking about the differences between those two types of humor.

AGplusone: I love Jill Boardman’s decription of Intern humor … just wondered if he was joking at himself

TAWN3: And I would have thought of wry first,

SAcademic: Except once. He put a little figure of an ice skater on top of an ice cube, and waited for me to fi

TAWN3: based on observations in his writings.

SAcademic: nd it.

AGplusone: in the ice tray? Or in a drink?

TAWN3: But, on further thought, there is a large degree in playfulness when he wants to be humorous

SAcademic: In the ice tray in the fridge.

TAWN3: such as in Star beast for example since we discussed it earlier.

markjmills has left the room.

TAWN3: And the things I think of as “wry”

AGplusone: Great! In a drink might have strange effects especially after a long night.

markjmills has entered the room.

TAWN3: come out as humor but are really political commentary

AGplusone: PJ O’Rourke, or Phil Wiley write/wrote very funny political commentary …

rjjusu: Good comments, Tawn. I’ve seen many of the same things, which is why I asked the question

TAWN3: So, I have to agree with what someone pointed out earlier,

TAWN3: that the humor is to make the message more palatable.

AGplusone: so does Dave Barry now that I think on it … and others

TAWN3: But it is not really humor for humor’s sake, because when he does want to be humourous

TAWN3: he is very playful and funny indeed!

TAWN3: So, one is meant to be funny, the other is meant to make the mesage strike home.

AGplusone: I’m all yours by IM Randy …

rjjusu: Yes, not quite Dave Barry, but not unlike PJ O’Rourke

TAWN3: That was my interesting (from my POV) observation.

TAWN3: And you are probably most definitely right Ginny, since you knew him best!

SAcademic: Nite all, time for me to get something to eat.

KMurphy165: Farewell

DenvToday: Good night!

SAcademic has left the room.

AGplusone: Good night, Ginny, thanks

TAWN3: Nite!

KultsiKN: time for by nap. Good night, all!

KultsiKN has left the room.

AGplusone: G’nite Kultsi … official close of log at 5:00:33 PM PDT

KMurphy165: Time to go and take care of family. Hope to see all here Thursday night.

AGplusone: Looking forward to it!

KMurphy165 has left the room.

AGplusone: Have we an e mail addy for KM?

DenvToday: Good night to one and all. Thanks for the terrific discussion.

DavidWrightSr: I think I have it. I’ll check

AGplusone: Dave: sending you full log ….

DenvToday has left the room.

rjjusu: Great discussion this evening. some real insights in tonight’s log into the character of RAH.

TAWN3: Yes, good discussion.

TAWN3: great discussion.

AGplusone: Good! Thanks Dave. sent.

markjmills has left the room.

rjjusu: Great comments, Tawn. I think they really caught the essence of what we

AGplusone: got it?

rjjusu: were talking about here, tonight.

rjjusu: And now, I want to go out an commit mayhem on some AOL dweeb

AGplusone: for limiting the buffer here! I’ll help …

AGplusone: I know where I can find a rock

TAWN3: Observation at the end you mean rj?

rjjusu: This shortening of messages is really cramping my writing.

rjjusu: I wish they would show a little buffer indicator if they are going to limit it like that.

rjjusu: Yes, Tawn.

TAWN3: Not only limiting the buffer, it used to be

AGplusone: It’s annoying … I do get the bell when I hit it …

AGplusone: but I’m surprised you guys don’t.

TAWN3: at least the first part of your message showed up until the limit point,

DavidWrightSr: I don’t get anything and have to retype when I over type.

TAWN3: so you didn’t have to rewrite a whole thought.

rjjusu: I don’t, that is what is frustrating to me. All I get is message too long or complicated

AGplusone: Send them a nasty e mail, from their website

rjjusu: then it dis appears, and I have to start from scratch.

AGplusone: big PITA

TAWN3: Now the whole thing dis apears and you get a “to long” notice instead, causing you

TAWN3: to sometimes lose the train of thought.

AGplusone: Only don’t tell ’em that it doesn’t happy on Macs, otherwise some brain-burned idiot will tell the pro

rjjusu: If this is the way it is going to be, I’m going to make a template in Notepad, and write there first.

TAWN3: Excite is sending out direct competition to AOL customers, got one yesterday

AGplusone: grammers to take out the Macs.

rjjusu: Then cut-and-paste to the AIM window. Just slows me down terribly.

TAWN3: maybe they see AOL as screwing up some stuff and feel they can compete better now.

AGplusone: Excite is a sinking ship …

AGplusone: I’m going to go back and get TypeIt4Me again, new upgrade and see if it works

rjjusu: And my train of thought derails and wrecks itself on the track of my keyboard

AGplusone: Thing I used to use in the AOL chat rooms. Basically a text squirter

AGplusone: I’m sure they have such animals for non-Mac ‘puters

TAWN3: Exactly rj, destorys train of thought sometimes.

DavidWrightSr: Folks, I gotta run. See you all later.

rjjusu: Well, til I find one, I’ll just use Editpad and transfer. I use it to keep track of how much

AGplusone: Me too, folk … see ya, and thanks for coming

rjjusu: I’ve written. See you, David

TAWN3: Night David

rjjusu: And David

DavidWrightSr: Log officially closed at 8:03 P.M. EDT.
Final End Of Discussion Log

Click Here to Return to Index

Leave a Reply