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Heinlein Reader's Discussion Group

Saturday 08-04-2001 5:00 P.M. EDT

Spies, Sneaks and Finks

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Here Begins The Discussion Log

You have just entered room "Heinlein Readers Group chat."

DJedPar: Hi David.

DavidWrightSr: Hi Ginny, Hi Denis

SAcademy: Hello David.

DJedPar: Plus tard, ma chere.

SAcademy: Oui, mon enfant

DJedPar: Merci, maman!

SAcademy: Maybe David speaks French. He does know German and Russian.

DavidWrightSr: Je parle un petit peu. il y a une langtemp depuis j' etudie francais

DavidWrightSr: or something lik that. French ain't my strong suit

DJedPar: You are a very good Mensch, David.

DavidWrightSr: Spasibo, Danke

SAcademy: Me, to David, but I had quite a lot of it.

DJedPar: This will be an international session? Like the UN.

SAcademy: Lucky us, we can spell the Rssian anyway we want to.

DavidWrightSr: I haven't studied it since 10th grade, that was 1956

KultsiKN has entered the room.

DavidWrightSr: Another International visitor

SAcademy: Hi, Kultsi. Do you know Denis Paradis?

KultsiKN: Good evening, everybody!

DJedPar: Hi Kultsi.

DavidWrightSr: Kultsi is Finnish, Denis

SAcademy: I guess it is evening in Helsinki.

KultsiKN: Hello. Denis

KultsiKN: Midnight.

SAcademy: Very late for you!

SAcademy: I wonder whether Sean will come today?

DavidWrightSr: It's early sunday for him isn't it?

KultsiKN: Saturday and summer vacation. What's one more white night?

DavidWrightSr: That's right. you don't get much nighttime this time of year do you?

SAcademy: Yes, the Norwegians stay up all night in the summer, They say they can sleep in the winter.

DavidWrightSr: I was stationed in Northern Germany. I recall some very short nights.

KultsiKN: I'm not that far to the North, the nights are dark already.

SAcademy: Kultsi is quite a bit north of there.

KultsiKN: Indeed I am, Ginny.

DavidWrightSr: AOL just announced a new version of AIM. I'll probably try it out next week.

SAcademy: I remember having dinner at around 11PM one night in Finland. The sky was still light.

SAcademy: I hope it gives us longer spaces for typing.

DJedPar: I installed it yesterday I think. Mostly kiddie stuff.

DavidWrightSr: It's supposed to have a lot of bells and whistles, but I doubt that it will be an improvement

SAcademy: How long is the download?

DavidWrightSr: I think the limit on messages is determined by the server, not which program we use

DJedPar: About 1o minutes.

KultsiKN: What speed?

SAcademy: Not bad at all. On five, I am stil getting notices of a download as I sign off.

DavidWrightSr: I'm going to be AFK for most of the evening still. Still can't sit in one position too long

DJedPar: I forget. They were doing it while I was logging on to this chat room.

SAcademy: How are you feeling today, David?

DavidWrightSr: A good deal better, but not yet up to par.

SAcademy: Is it very painful?

DavidWrightSr: I'm hoping that it will improve enough to be able to get back to work monday

KultsiKN: What's biting, David?

SAcademy: I never had chicken pox as a child, so I can't get that!

DavidWrightSr: Not terribly. Just have to keep off of it. Shingles, Kultsi. where I sit down.

DavidWrightSr: Thats an inflamation of nerves caused by the same virus as chicken pox

SAcademy: Would a rubber doughnut help? One that blows up?

DavidWrightSr: I would have to sit side-saddle :-)

SAcademy: I mean inflatable.

DJedPar: Shades of Waldo!

SAcademy: I didn't know he had chicken pox.

DJedPar: No but he didn't have to sit either.

SAcademy: Okay. Snowy is awake

SAcademy: He's scratching my shoes.

DJedPar: Hi you handsome Devil

SAcademy: He can't read.

DJedPar: How do you know?

SAcademy: Shall I tell him, or would his head swell up?

DJedPar: He's very cool.

SAcademy: Actually, I don't know.

DJedPar: He might surprise you. He reads you very well, I think.

SAcademy: Just went back to AOL and didn't see anyone there.

DJedPar: I think they all knew it was on for today.

SAcademy: Who will be running this thing? Jane, or

David S.?

KultsiKN: I see lots of people, just not on this chat.

DJedPar: How do you see them, Kultsi?

DavidWrightSr: Jane won't be here. She had visitors

KultsiKN: On my buddy list

DavidWrightSr: Denis. You add their screen names to your 'buddy list' then you see them when they are on

DJedPar: Got it.

SAcademy: Then it has to be David or Bill. Bill reminded me of this when I saw him earlier.

DJedPar: I think David S is hosting.

KultsiKN: Like I just added you, Denis, to AFH group on my buddy list.

DavidWrightSr: I expect that they will show up in a little while. Always in the past when I thought...

DavidWrightSr: that things were going to be slow, they always picked up.

DJedPar: Thanks Kultsi.

Berllan5UD has entered the room.

DavidWrightSr: Hi David. It is David isn't it from England?

Berllan5UD: well, Wales, but we won't quibble. lol

DJedPar: I told you this would be a UN summit.

SAcademy: Perish that thought!

DavidWrightSr: Sorry about that. Wales it is.

KultsiKN: It's hard to see the difference from US ;-)

SAcademy: But it is David?

Berllan5UD: hard to see it from here sometimes

Berllan5UD: yes, it is David

SAcademy: Thanks. would yo mind using boldface?

DavidWrightSr: I wonder where our fearless leader is?

DJedPar: Maybe you should prod him. Maybe he forgot the time.

SAcademy: Who knows? I saw him earlier.

DavidWrightSr: Well, just chat amongst ourselves. Someone will be along to get us started I'm sure.

SAcademy: He's not around. I expect he will apologize.

DavidWrightSr: I've got to get up from keyboard for a while.

SAcademy: Okay. Anyone know anything? It's spies and such for the topic.

KultsiKN: At the beginning...

DavidWrightSr: Spies, Sneaks and Finks.

DJedPar: I've just gone blank for a minute there.

DJedPar: Finnish humour?

SAcademy: The topic worked well on Thursday night.

KultsiKN: No, RAH. Mike in Moon.

SAcademy: He wasn't a spy. Or was he?

DenvToday has entered the room.

DJedPar: Yes it did. I thought they were going on like a poker game.

KultsiKN: He was, the best kind.

DenvToday: Good afternoon everybody.

SAcademy: Good after noon

DJedPar: Hi Denv.

DenvToday: Good to see you all.

SAcademy: Do you really live in Denver? We lved in Colo Spgs for years.

Berllan5UD: how do you increase text size?

DenvToday: Yes, I do live in Denver. I know you lived there, and I have many friends who live in the Springs.

DenvToday: Most of them are retired Air Force.

DJedPar: Kultsi might answer that.

SAcademy: We ad to leave because of the altitude.

KultsiKN: View, Edit Chat Preferences, IM Buddy Chat

Berllan5UD: aha

Berllan5UD: damn

DJedPar: Thanks Kultsi.

DenvToday: I can understand that. Many wonderful things about the Colorado climate...the sunshine, lack of...

Berllan5UD: try again

DenvToday: ...humidty. But the alitude is one of the drawbacks.

DJedPar: Can you send some rain this way. Please?

SAcademy: We've had storm clouds all week, and a lot of rain, but the position is wrong to send it to you, Denis

KultsiKN: My fony is Comic Sans MS, 8 points

KultsiKN: fony=font

SAcademy: Now if you could get the earth to revolve in the other direction, I might do something about it.

DJedPar: I would love to try. But I have no knack for it.

DenvToday: We had a tax rate cut this year. That's as close as we're going to get to the earth revolving...

DenvToday: the other direction.

Berllan5UD: david, i'm going to reboot AIM. please send another invite in 30 secs

Berllan5UD has left the room.

DJedPar: Maybe you'd better invite him Ginny.

Berllan5UD has entered the room.

DenvToday: Can I help?

DenvToday: wb

SAcademy: I've sent several invites. No luck yet.

Berllan5UD: it worked

SAcademy: Guess so.

DJedPar: You're blue! Nice colour.

SAcademy: You've got a different color.

DavidWrightSr: Color and font size changes don't appear to take affect unless you restart.

SAcademy: That's the color for links.

DenvToday has left the room.

DenvToday has entered the room.

DenvToday: Let's see...

DenvToday: No, didn't work.

Berllan5UD: born a Tory. die a Tory, DJ

SAcademy: I should warn everyone. Don't touch escape key!

DJedPar: In Canada, I'm a liberal.

DavidWrightSr: Right. It drops you right out of the program, No warning

fgherman has entered the room.

SAcademy: It will kick you offline again

DenvToday: lol Now you're tempting me. "Whatever you do, do NOT push the red button!"

fgherman: Hello all

SAcademy: Hello, Felicia.

DenvToday: Hello fg

KultsiKN: Hi, Felicia!

SAcademy: Joel sent me pictures of your daughters. They're beautiful

fgherman: Thank you, Ginny

SAcademy: I told him to get out his white shotgun.

fgherman: lol

SAcademy: He didn't find it funny, somehow.

SAcademy: How old are the girls?

fgherman: Rachel is 7 and Judy is 11

SAcademy: Thanks.

DJedPar: OK. Ginny, would you consider Headmaster Howe in Red Planet a fink?

Berllan5UD: a what?

fgherman has left the room.

DJedPar: a Fink. as in the topic tonite, as opposed to a villain

DavidWrightSr: I didn't participate Thursday, But part of what I saw as a problems was a lack of definitions.

fgherman has entered the room.

fgherman: oops

KultsiKN: No need to blush

DavidWrightSr: The old ESC key?

Berllan5UD: a fink is a good guy?

KultsiKN: No

DenvToday: A fink is a traitor.

DenvToday: A Quizling.

DavidWrightSr: Anyone want to define fink?

DenvToday: A double agent, usually.

fgherman: the "-" NOT the "x"

Berllan5UD: right. got it

DJedPar: Not in my book. A fink is a dirty lousy.....

DJedPar: What's a quizling?

DavidWrightSr: As I see it, a fink is one who is willing to sell out his side for money or other personal gain

DenvToday: Yes, that works.

DJedPar: Like my old boss.

SAcademy: It's Quisling, and he was a Norwegian traitor during WWII

DavidWrightSr: Quisling was an official of Norway who sold out to the Nazi's

KultsiKN: Quisling is a proper name of a Norwegian traitor

DJedPar: Encyclopedic Ginny!

SAcademy: What's the difference between fink and scab?

DavidWrightSr: The term is not synonomous with spy, since their value as a spy is destroyed once they sell out.

DenvToday: A scab is a worker who will cross a picket line.

SAcademy: Thank you. Can't keep things straight with slang terms.

DJedPar: Did Hoffa coin the term Scab?

DenvToday: I think it's been around since the 19th century.

DavidWrightSr: Scab goes way back in the labor movement. Wish AG were here, he could tell us more clearly

SAcademy: Don't know. but I think it existed befor he held sway

KultsiKN: Scab has several meanings, one of which is strike breaker.

DavidWrightSr: scab is pretty restricted to labor movement, but fink is general usage.

SAcademy: You tell us natives,Kultsi.

DavidWrightSr: Remember Wyoh asked Manny if he 'finked for authority'?

KultsiKN: Scabies

KultsiKN: Crust on a wound

SAcademy: It doesn't mean the same thing, I believe.

DJedPar: Not those little crabs again.

fgherman: According to the OED: A pejorative term of wide application, esp.

DJedPar: Sarcoptes scabiei

fgherman: a. An unpleasant or contemptible person.

KultsiKN: No, but it has those meanings

fgherman: b. An informer; a detective. c. A strike-breaker.

SAcademy: Thank you Felicia

DavidWrightSr: 'fink' has a bad connotation. 'informant' has a good one. Depends on which side you are O:-)

fgherman: intr. To inform on.

DJedPar: Felicia, are you a librarian?

DenvToday: Fink became a popular word kid in the early 60's when I was a kid.

KultsiKN: Merriam-Webster Online defines it a bit differently

DenvToday: when I was a kid, that is

fgherman: Of course

DenvToday: We used it the same way we'd use "jerk."

DJedPar: Bravo!

DJedPar: I agree with Denv on the use of Fink in the 60s

DavidWrightSr: words often lose a lot of their meaning when they become overused. People pick them up ...

DavidWrightSr: without knowing the original meaning.

DJedPar: Like decimate?

fgherman: Rather like the Red Queen in Alice

fgherman: a Fink is like a Narc

SAcademy: Anything that begns deci- means tenths.

DavidWrightSr: I never was clear if it meant reduce *by* a tenth or *to* a tenth.

DJedPar: Today they use it in the sense = annhilate

SAcademy: But nihil means none.

DavidWrightSr: That has become the standard meaning.

DenvToday: "Fantastic" properly means unbelievable rather than "wonderful."

SAcademy: As you can see, I studied Latin for years.

DJedPar: Right. Deci means one in 10 and matar means kill.

Berllan5UD: ugh. was it Caesar who used decimation on his troops?

SAcademy: I never heard of that!

DJedPar: He did it properly. Killed one in 10.

DavidWrightSr: Decimate. Is that what the Brits did when they gave up pounds, shillings, pence?

DJedPar: Ooooh!!

Berllan5UD: i ought to know which Roman it was. damn, i'm going gaga

DJedPar: Caligula and also Tiberius.

DenvToday: I can remember the first line from The Gallic Wars. lol My big achievement in 7th grade Latin.

DavidWrightSr: Ok. we have a rought definition of 'fink'. What finks come to mind in RAH's works?

DavidWrightSr: rought=rough

KultsiKN: Snotty Fasset, although that might be arguable.

DenvToday: A fink of sorts was the assistant astrogator in Starman Jones. I can't remember the character's name.

DavidWrightSr: Simes.

DenvToday: Yes

DavidWrightSr: but were either finks according to our definition. or just jerks

KultsiKN: Simes was not a fink, he was just plain nasty.

KultsiKN: A faulty person.

DenvToday: Simes was a traitor to his profession and the crew. He betrayed them by covering up his mistakes...

DJedPar: Maybe we should add Jerks to the discussion.

DenvToday: ...attempting to take over. But maybe I"m stretching it.

DavidWrightSr: The only finks that I can think of off hand were collaborators in Puppet Masters and Sixth Column.

DavidWrightSr: Denv. Good point. what about Fasset. who did he betray?

KultsiKN: His comrades.

DavidWrightSr: The whole concept of 'side' gets kind of murky with respect to the Prophet and his cronies.

Bdelloguy has entered the room.

SAcademy: Hello, Mark

DenvToday: Greetings

KultsiKN: Doesn't it always with traitors: a traitor on one side, a hero on the other?

Bdelloguy: Hi Ginny, Hi All. Just thought I would try to get my IM system working again!

DenvToday: Good point. Benedict Arnold was a hero to the British.

SAcademy: And to the colonies in the French and Indian wars.

fgherman: Hello Mark

DavidWrightSr: Message is too long or too complex

DenvToday: Generally in the works of RAH, we have less emphasis on villains and more empahsis on the protagonists

DenvToday: Their positive force rather than their reaction to the villain's negative force.

DavidWrightSr: Right. All of these spies, sneaks, and finks are really very minor to the story if they appear at all

Bdelloguy: Whoops.

SAcademy: Unfortunately, stories need conflict, or you don't have a story.

DJedPar: Isn't that something Robert said?

SAcademy: Sometimes it's man aggainst man, other times it's man against nature.

Bdelloguy: A friend of mine said that every word in fiction should do one of two things...

DavidWrightSr: Just thought of more 'finks'. Skinny and Fatso in HSSWT

Bdelloguy: 1. Reveal character, 2. Advance plot.

DenvToday: In THIAHM, the villain is oppression and unfair exploitation rather than a person. Mort the Wart...

DenvToday: a minor annoyance, not rising to the level of villain.

Bdelloguy: But evil can be banal in origin...

KultsiKN: He was an icon of tyranny

Bdelloguy: Look at the Rudbek clan in COTG

DavidWrightSr: How Mark?

Bdelloguy: My reading of COTG never suggested that the Rudbeks *actively* wanted to get

Bdelloguy: into slavery....

Bdelloguy: But they ended up sacrificing Thorby's parents for cash from slavers

Bdelloguy: So: is evil inherent, or must it grow...even from a pure heart?!

DenvToday: Long time since I read COTG. But the acting head of the corporation was a fink. Again, I can't...

DenvToday: remember his name.

DavidWrightSr: Weemsby

Bdelloguy: Sure. A fink AND a lawyer!

DenvToday: He played being Thorby's friend and mentor, then stabbed him in the back.

DJedPar: I gather Robert was very much against slavery. The theme comes up often.

SAcademy: Well can you think of anything better to be against?

DenvToday: Only the IRS. lol

DavidWrightSr: Same thing :-)

DJedPar: Not unless I try very hard.

DenvToday: Very true!

SAcademy: We saw it with communism

DJedPar: Freedom is paramount in most societies.

DenvToday: I can think of one very admirable fink.

DenvToday: In one of the early short stories. A Jewish doctor must operate on a Hitler-like character.

DavidWrightSr: Is it? most people want it for themselves, but are very willing to restrict it for others

DenvToday: He turns the tables on Hitler.

DJedPar: Oh, David. You know what I mean.

DJedPar: That's very good Denv!

Berllan5UD: out of my depth here. nite all

DavidWrightSr: That wasn't being a fink. He was not betraying 'his' side, but supporting it

Berllan5UD has left the room.

DavidWrightSr: So Long David

DenvToday: That's true. And he was operating under duress. But to the Nazis he was a fink.

BPRAL22169 has entered the room.

BPRAL22169: Hello, all

KultsiKN: Hi, Bill

DenvToday: Good afternoon Bill.

DavidWrightSr: Welcome. Bill

SAcademy: Hi, Bill

BPRAL22169: Sorry for not being here sooner -- I lost track of time.

DJedPar: Hi Bill. All Nazis were finks.

BPRAL22169: *blink*

BPRAL22169: I thought "fink" was rather narrowly defined.

DavidWrightSr: We had a fairly loose definition for our use so far. You want to define it further

DenvToday: I think "informer" is the most accurate definition of fink.

BPRAL22169: I would agree with Denv -- except for the connotations of ratting out one's fellows.

BPRAL22169: Hence the "rat fink" of Mad Magazine fame.

BPRAL22169: But totalitarian regimes always require their proles to inform on each other.

BPRAL22169: Each polices the thoughtcrimes of the others.

BPRAL22169: So the statement, while true within the definition, is trivial.

DavidWrightSr: We have used the term to mean anyone who sells out his side for money or personal gain

DavidWrightSr: Including, Quisling, Arnold etc. Although I am sure one can debate those.

DJedPar: Mussolini? Pius XII?

BPRAL22169: In terms of that definition, then, all Nazis are not finks.

DavidWrightSr: I agree

DenvToday: Did anyone here grow up in Cleveland?

DavidWrightSr: Of course, the question of 'what is his side' is really difficult to define.

BPRAL22169: It's truly a matter of what definitions you choose to apply.

DenvToday: Nathan Hale was a fink to the British, wasn't he?

BPRAL22169: No, he was a spy.

DenvToday: Yes.

DenvToday: Well...I guess not really an informer.

DavidWrightSr: But many Nazi's were finks in the sense that they went along rather than defending ...

DavidWrightSr: what they believed was right or wrong.

BPRAL22169: "Fink" doesn't really seem to fit the entire Nazi party. How about "Sneak"?

DavidWrightSr: How about just plain 'evil'?

BPRAL22169: (I could get myself into so much trouble here!)

DenvToday: How about "rotting in Hell." More satisfying.

DJedPar: Evil is a better term for Nazis

BPRAL22169: Children! Children!

DavidWrightSr: We haven't got a defnitiion for spy yet, Bill. Haven't made it that far

DenvToday: Sorry Dad.

BPRAL22169: May I suggest a compromise: evil AND rotting in hell.

fgherman: And the plot against Hitler didn't happen until the Nazis started losing.

DenvToday: Of course. von Staufenberg and Rommel were very happy with Hitler when they were winning.

BPRAL22169: Never too late to refurbish one's moral armaments.

DJedPar: That's good Bill. And maybe more...

DavidWrightSr: IMHO, that was a case of finks realizing that they were on the losing side .

BPRAL22169: Put on the whole armor of righteousness, that sort of thing.

DavidWrightSr: and wanting to get on the winning side.

BPRAL22169: I don't think you can justify that historically:

DJedPar: Maybe the slugs from Puppet Masters got to them.

BPRAL22169: Von Stauffenberg seems to have thought they were losing BECAUSE of Hitler and if sensible

BPRAL22169: management got in they might be able to turn the war around or make some compromise

BPRAL22169: I think we can let the July plotters be honorable men

BPRAL22169: If there is any inclination to that position.

BPRAL22169: Since we seem to be at WWII, why not turn to "The Unpleasant Profession of Jonathan Hoag"?

DenvToday: Von Stauffenberg did not make a moral judgement at the beginning. His opinion of Hitler and...

DenvToday: ...the Nazi gang was pragmatic. He could have refused service early on if he had moral qualms.

DenvToday: That goes triple for Rommel.

BPRAL22169: While I certainly agree it was too little too late, but the situation is not quite so black-and-white

BPRAL22169: as you wish to make it appear.

BPRAL22169: Why not leave the gentlemen to their private hell and move on -- we have so MANY levels of

DenvToday: I suppose. But there was a German underground who actively opposed the Nazis. Little-known.

BPRAL22169: hell available for exploration.

DenvToday: The Bird is the Word. lol

DenvToday: Word

DenvToday: Loved that song as a kid.

BPRAL22169: 1942 to 1962!

DenvToday: I always hum it when reading Hoag.

BPRAL22169: In one fell leap.

BPRAL22169: The Sons of the Bird seem to have institutionalized all sorts of sleaziness.

KultsiKN: How about we take ten?

DJedPar: Good idea!

fgherman: ok

KultsiKN: Just out of the blue: how common are mobile phones in your necks of woods?

BPRAL22169: Do you mean cellular?

KultsiKN: Yep.

BPRAL22169: We have both mobile and cellular in the U.S.

fgherman: Can't spin a cat

BPRAL22169: Very. It's down to about $40 a month.

KultsiKN: Define, please, Bill

KultsiKN: mobile - cellular

BPRAL22169: I think the mobile phones are simply those that can be removed from their base unit - wireless.

BPRAL22169: The new ones can go up to a mile now.

KultsiKN: U.M. cordless?

BPRAL22169: Cellular phones don't have a base unit -- they are portable and send and receive within their

BPRAL22169: own casing.

BPRAL22169: The digital people talk as if theirs were something different from cellular, but I don't

BPRAL22169: think that's the case.

KultsiKN: OK. I mean those. We have more than two million of those in Finland.

KultsiKN: Our population is five million.

DenvToday: As a percentage of the population, that probably higher than here in the U.S.

BPRAL22169: No, that sounds about right for the Bay Area.

DenvToday: Not for Denver.

BPRAL22169: They've had to introduce 8 new area codes -- each area code giving 100 million possible new numbers.

fgherman: Finland has the highest percentage of the population using cellular according to the stats I've seen

DenvToday: The sheer size of the U.S. works against cellular technology.

DenvToday: Vast reaches inbetween cities.

BPRAL22169: yes. The U.S. phone system is a hashed file.

BPRAL22169: Laugh, somebody. That was a joke.

DJedPar: :-D

SAcademy: LOL. ROFL

DenvToday: Sorry, I was busy craving hashed potattoes.

DenvToday: aaack I Quayled. potatoes.

BPRAL22169: Thank you.

DJedPar: Cellular phones are great in a blizzard and you hit a deer.

SAcademy: You mean hashed brown?

DenvToday: Yes. I love them. My arteries don't. lol

BPRAL22169: I think they call hashed browns what the Swiss call Roesti.

BPRAL22169: But hash comes from the French hachette -- chopped.

SAcademy: don't know any swedish

DenvToday: My grandmother used to make them. She called them "hashed potatoes." She'd also make home-made...

BPRAL22169: Neither do the Swiss, in the main. And for that we are profoundly grateful.

DenvToday: ...corned beef hash. Ah..the memories

SAcademy: I like 'em with onions in them

DenvToday: Yes!

BPRAL22169: I have had something called "Red Flannel Hash" with grated beets.

DJedPar: Corned beef hash. Julian Child with an ax.

DenvToday: rofl

BPRAL22169: I suspect a Kiwi had some hand in the invention of that dish.

SAcademy: LOL

BPRAL22169: They are known to put beets on hamburgers and pizza -- a vile practice.

SAcademy: New Zealanders can't cook at all.

BPRAL22169: I guess since Jane isn't here we can whisper that they inherited it from the English.

DenvToday: Putting beets on pizza is evil and wrong.

BPRAL22169: Contrary to natural law.

DenvToday: Exactly.

SAcademy: Natch. From who else?

DJedPar: Like lettuce on crepes?

BPRAL22169: I suppose we should consider ourselves put in our places, in Jane's absence.

SAcademy: Jane may read the log. We'd better take out this part!

DenvToday: The British eat tomatoes for breakfast. Jane has a lot to answer for.

KultsiKN: She's gonna read this, you know...

BPRAL22169: I don't know if lettuce on crepes is contrary to natural law -- but it seems rather pointless

BPRAL22169: to me.

BPRAL22169: As I said, we consider ourselves properly put in our places.

BPRAL22169: In absentia.

DJedPar: Beef and Kidney Pie!

DenvToday: We haven't mentioned the passing of Poul Anderson. I was so saddened by it.

SAcademy: Ugh. Ever have that?

BPRAL22169: I'm glad we had a chance to chat with him last year.

DenvToday: Arthur C. Clarke is now the only great one left from the Heinlein generation.

SAcademy: We did a moment of silence Thursday.

BPRAL22169: You know, that might be a very good idea right now -- observe a moment of silence ini memory

DJedPar: Yes. Ugh! Tastes like urine. Really. BK Pie I mean.

BPRAL22169: of Poul Anderson -- thenr econvene

BPRAL22169: Agreed?

KultsiKN: Yes.

DenvToday: Yes, of course.

BPRAL22169: We're on, starting now.

BPRAL22169: OK.


BPRAL22169: Anybody want to talk about Poul briefly before returning to Heinlein?

BPRAL22169: skoal.

DenvToday: Skoal!

KultsiKN: Here's to Absent Friends

BPRAL22169: Favorite books, experiences, anecdotes?

DenvToday: If I have two favorite characters from all of speculative fiction, the first would be Lazarus Long.

BPRAL22169: van Rijn?

DenvToday: The second would be Nicholas van Rijn.

BPRAL22169: I like Steve and Virginia Matuchek

DenvToday: Yes Bill.

SAcademy: Ginny Graylock. The witch.

BPRAL22169: I'm so glad he got a second book done in that series. Truly makes it his own.

DenvToday: I think her name is an homage to you, SA.

DJedPar: Who is Ginny Graylock?

BPRAL22169: Steve matuchek's wife.

SAcademy: In one of oul's books.

BPRAL22169: Operation Chaos

SAcademy: He sent me a copy of it, said that I inspired it. Or something.

BPRAL22169: and -- I forget the second one, was it Operation Luna?

BPRAL22169: The novelets that make up OC were directly inspired by "Magic, Inc."

DenvToday: Yes Bill.

BPRAL22169: Are we rready to go back to our muttons?

SAcademy: At cons, Poul would retire early, and Karen would sit up all night talking to Robert, keeping him up.

BPRAL22169: She kept everyone up all night.

SAcademy: "God in a yellow bathrobe.

BPRAL22169: I have never known her to sleep.

BPRAL22169: Was that of Seacon?

SAcademy: Not at cons.

DenvToday: The RAH generation truly was the golden age. The sense that anything was possible will never be...

SAcademy: Yes, Seacon

DenvToday: ...with us again. Perhaps it's the innocence of the reading public that will never be seen again.

BPRAL22169: People still talk about the party you threw at SeaCon.

BPRAL22169: Of course, fandom was much smaller then.

KultsiKN: Denv, you are showing signs of age...

SAcademy: Do they really? It went on and on and on, And I didn't get any sleep.

DenvToday: True Kultski. I'm approaching 50...makes you contemplative I guess. lol

BPRAL22169: You could have kept Karen Anderson company

DJedPar: Ginny, were you a party girl?

KultsiKN: sigh. I'm on the other side of it.

SAcademy: I didn't have any choce.

BPRAL22169: Past tense? no way.

SAcademy: Not by choice, Denis.

DJedPar: Right! :-D

BPRAL22169: "Are you now or have you ever been...?"

DenvToday: "Old" is fifteen years older than you are. :-)

KultsiKN: :-)

BPRAL22169: OK, it's going on 4 p.m. Shall we return to our muttons?

DJedPar: Yes

DenvToday: <---getting out knife and fork

SAcademy: Absolutely.

BPRAL22169: I see there are 9 of us here -- how about each of us naming 1 each of a 'spy," a "fink," and

BPRAL22169: a "sneak" in Heinlein -- let's let someone who was at Thursday's lead off -- How about you,

BPRAL22169: Felicia?

BPRAL22169: If Felicia is afk, how about David Wright?

BPRAL22169: Denis? Were you at Thursday's?

DJedPar: Howe - Mort - Bill yes?

BPRAL22169: Howe from Red Planet. Where was Mort from?

BPRAL22169: (I just couldn't remember)


Bdelloguy: Spy: Mike the Computer. Fink: Headmaster Howe. Sneak: Mike the Computer, again.

BPRAL22169: Oh, Mort the Wart?

DJedPar: Yes

BPRAL22169: Wasn't he the Warden? What category are you placing him in?

Bdelloguy: I always wondered what Mort the Wart was really like....

Bdelloguy: Stuffed shirt in the wrong place, or did he ever have convictions (pun)

DenvToday: I'm sure he was a nice guy who thought he was doing good work.

BPRAL22169: Seemed like a timeserver to me.

KultsiKN: No way!

DenvToday: Like so many bureaucrats.

DenvToday: They think they're in the right.

Bdelloguy: Bureaucrats do think THEY know best, after all.

KultsiKN: Agreed.

BPRAL22169: But you see why I'm having a hard time placing Mort in one of the three categories -- Denis, help!

Bdelloguy: Now, Mort was not outraged by the rape of the Loonie girl...I say "fink"

DJedPar: What about those two characters in Podkayne? I forget their names. Mort was a Jerk

BPRAL22169: Not to pick nits, but "jerk" is not one of the three categories.

DenvToday: We discussed Weemsby before. Classic two-faced betrayer.

BPRAL22169: Though Heinlein does abound in them.

DJedPar: Ok he was a fink but a jerk according to Ginny's use of the term.


Bdelloguy: PODKAYNE is a interesting choice. Was Uncle Tom *really* a nice guy?

Bdelloguy: He used his own grandchildren as political shields.

BPRAL22169: We've had this discussion; I think there was a gulf profound in our understandings of the character

BPRAL22169: Let's take a story that contains a microcosm and look for the character types -- how about

BPRAL22169: "If This Goes On--"

BPRAL22169: or Orphans of the Sky.

Bdelloguy has left the room.

DJedPar: Orphans sounds good. Give me a hint.

BPRAL22169: ITGO: Snotty Fassett was a spy and a sneak. I think RAH at one point says something lie he was

BPRAL22169: a spy because he had a sneak's character.

BPRAL22169: Sorry, let me get collected on Orphans.

BPRAL22169: Who's a fink in ITGO?

DJedPar: I'm no help. Brain flatulence.

BPRAL22169: I'm trying to remember charactersfrom Orphans -- the priest who betrays Hugh when he returns?

DenvToday: Same here. I don't remember a fink in ITGO. But it's been a long while since I've read it.

TAWN3 has entered the room.

BPRAL22169: Tawn Johnson will be here shortly.

DJedPar: Bill is that bookshelf close by? Mine's upstairs.

BPRAL22169: Very shortly, apparently.

DenvToday: Hello Tawn.

TAWN3: Hello everybody

KultsiKN: Hello, Tawn

DJedPar: Hi Tawn!

BPRAL22169: It's close by me -- I've got Orphans. Did you want Revolt in 2100?

SAcademy: Nice to see you Tawn

TAWN3: Thank you SA. It is good to be here!

DJedPar: Revolt sound good too.

BPRAL22169: Orphans seems remarkably free of spies, finks, and sneaks.

BPRAL22169: OK -- how about virtuous spies -- Joe Green?

BPRAL22169: Any others? I'm not quite sure Friday qualifies.

TAWN3: Kettle Belly, Friday, The Old Man, .....or have they been covered already?

TAWN3: She's a spy.

DJedPar: Yes. Thursday.

TAWN3: In the broad sense.

BPRAL22169: I'm not sure Kettle belly qualifies. The Old man might.

DenvToday: There are the two humans who work for the Aliens in Have Spacesuit, Will Travel. But they're openly..

TAWN3: Why not Bill?

DenvToday: ...taitorous. Not informers.

BPRAL22169: Broad sense -- she's actually a courier for an organization that includes spies.

DenvToday: traitorous.

BPRAL22169: We did talk about collabos on Thursday.

TAWN3: She's a field agent none the less though.

BPRAL22169: I believe we left it at "morally weak"

BPRAL22169: But field agent does not mean spy.

TAWN3: Hmmm, OK.

BPRAL22169: Not in the sense that, say, Snotty Fassett was a spy or Joe Green was a spy.

BPRAL22169: Or Nathan Hale.

DenvToday: The character in Double Star...the operative who informs on Bonforte when he isn't made a member...

BPRAL22169: it just occurred to me -- RAH did make one of his heroes a spy, but none finks or sneaks --

DenvToday: ...of the Congress.

TAWN3: Citizen of the Galaxy

BPRAL22169: Yes, that would be a fink.

TAWN3: Baslim the Beggar was a spy. By any definition.

BPRAL22169: The pickpocket who wanted to teach Thorby the trade?

BPRAL22169: Oh, very good point.

BPRAL22169: So an honorable gentleman may be a spy, but not a fink or a sneak?

TAWN3: But of course!

BPRAL22169: There speaks a revolutionary!

DJedPar: Or lady... sounds good to me.

DenvToday: Would the Double Star character be a fink? I can't remember his name. My memory lately...

TAWN3: Like the British Foreign Service before Reilly.

BPRAL22169: Is there any other primary definition of "fink" except the union usage? I don't know.

TAWN3: And there is a spy in Stranger.

DenvToday: If only Reilly had been successful in Russia. How many millions of deaths would have been prevented?

TAWN3: I agree Denv!

TAWN3: But Felix Dherjhinsky (spelling) played him, and it, too well.

DenvToday: Yes. What might have been.

BPRAL22169: And of course Mike is the Spy in Stranger!

TAWN3: :-)

TAWN3: :-) :-) :-)

DenvToday: Invasion of the Smiley Faces

BPRAL22169: I think the turncoat in Double Star was named "Bill" but I can't find his last name.

TAWN3: :-)

BPRAL22169: But do they speak Martian?

DenvToday: lol

TAWN3: Double Star starts out with spies. That was covered no doubt.

DenvToday: No, it wasn't.

TAWN3: Geez.

TAWN3: Lots of spies in Heinlein!

DenvToday: But you're right. But I don't think they fit the description of fink.

BPRAL22169: We have been wandering in the wilderness until you came.

TAWN3: Oh, so it must fit all three descriptions?

DenvToday: I'm not sure. lol

TAWN3: Puppet Master. I know that was covered (wasn't it?).

TAWN3: Or, spy like activity when there is no direct spy.

BPRAL22169: it's just Bill, Bill, Bill, Bill in Double Star.

BPRAL22169: We talked about the collaborators in Puppet Masters

BPRAL22169: Thursday.

TAWN3: For instance, Farnham's Freehold. They resort to using spycraft to communicate.

BPRAL22169: Hard to fit Farnham's freehold into any of the thre e-- they are slaves.

TAWN3: So, one may not think it is a novel with "intelligence stuff" in it, but it is.

DenvToday: There's a character in Farnham's Freehold. He's black and originally a friend of Hugh's. But he...

TAWN3: Exactly. They are not spies at all. But they use spycraft.

DJedPar: What we would call Joseph in Farnham's Freehold?

DenvToday: ...decides he likes "black power."

DenvToday: He becomes one of the oppressors.

BPRAL22169: I think Joseph is simply corrupted by bigotry in the same way that the others were.

BPRAL22169: There is no special virtue in being oppressed.

DenvToday: Yes. He spent his life as one of the oppressed. He decided to try the other side for once.

DenvToday: Understandable, if not admirabloe.

BPRAL22169: Yes.

BPRAL22169: Everyone in that book was a racist, in one way or another. Quite remarkable.

BPRAL22169: Something for everyone. Possbly not -- was it Linda?

BPRAL22169: At least I don't recall her demonstrating any strain of racism.

DJedPar: Who be Linda?

BPRAL22169: The daughter's friend, who eventually winds up with Hugh.

DJedPar: Barbara?

DenvToday: People don't often examine their basic assumptions. 50 years ago it would not have occured to most..

SAcademy: Barbara

DenvToday: ...people that assuming white supremacy was racist. It was simply the order of the universe.

BPRAL22169: Yes. Barbara. "Linda" didn't sound right, but I couldnt' think of the correct name.

BPRAL22169: Agree, Denv. That's one of the reasons FF was an important book in 1964-65

TAWN3: I agree. FF is a very important book.

BPRAL22169: Even though not one of his best-liked.

TAWN3: I agree. FF is a very important book. I don't understand why most people don't like it.

DJedPar: It's one of my favouritest books.

TAWN3: Same with I Will fear No Evil.

DenvToday: People often resent that which makes them re-examine their basic beliefs.

TAWN3: Yes.

BPRAL22169: Yes

DJedPar: Eyah!

TAWN3: I was surprised when I found RAH fans on line and most didn't like FF and IWFNE. I think those are

BPRAL22169: And I think that is the key to why Heinlein is so disliked by the Academy and so liked by us proles

TAWN3: two extremely important works!!!!!!

DJedPar: What Academy Bill?

BPRAL22169: Just academics in general. There are so many hoops to jump through to get a degree that an

BPRAL22169: academic becomes vested in the status quo. We, on the other hand, are very conscious that

BPRAL22169: something is wrong. They feel attacked by Heinlein; we feel validated.

TAWN3: Farnham is Politically Incorrect!

BPRAL22169: PC makes me tired.

DenvToday: Absolutely Bill.

DJedPar: Is it a Southern thing?

BPRAL22169: I don't think so.

TAWN3: IWFNE on the other hand was politically correct way before it's time.

BPRAL22169: About 100 years ago the intellectual life of the country went into the Academy -- so they say.

BPRAL22169: We are gathered together today, among other things, to dispute that proposition.

DenvToday: How many people realize that Rod Walker is black in Tunnel in the Sky?

TAWN3: I do.

DenvToday: Yes, but how many casual readers, I meant. Not us.

TAWN3: But only because it has been brought up before in afh.

DenvToday: Same with Uncle Tom.

TAWN3: It escaped m4e in the novel.

BPRAL22169: I noticed it on first reading, but didn't think anything about it (both Rod Walker and Uncle

BPRAL22169: [Doesn't it take some nerve to call a black Uncle] Tom)

TAWN3: And even then, it is not explicitely stated in Tunnel. We gather it from things such as the color of

TAWN3: scar tissue and what not.

BPRAL22169: Yes. Glancing remarks.

TAWN3: So, it is an iffy conclusion I dare say.

DenvToday: RAH was really sly--and brilliant. We respect and admire Uncle Tom--THEN we find out he's black.

DenvToday: Quite a jolt for the sixties reader.

BPRAL22169: Yeah. It's all part of the Plan.

TAWN3: But that is how I like my "race". Not an issue. Taken for granted, as in Space Cadet, and the

BPRAL22169: Oh, and if we're doing race how about Johnny Rico in ST?

TAWN3: international nature of the cadets (and interplanet).

DenvToday: Good point!

BPRAL22169: I think Caspar van Diem was cast against type.

DJedPar: Poor Caspar is always miscast!

BPRAL22169: He didn't make a very good Tarzan, i'll admit.

BPRAL22169: There was a Pilipino actor -- or perhaps Latino on Earth: The Final Conflict

DJedPar: Any finks in IWFNE?

TAWN3: Or the obvious use of race in Star Beast, which is explicitelty stated. That is my favorite example!

BPRAL22169: who could have done Juan Rico.

BPRAL22169: Mr. Kiku is a good character.

BPRAL22169: I can't think of any of any of the three kinds in IWFNE

BPRAL22169: The action didn't really lend itself to that kind of character.

TAWN3: Dr. Kiku from Africa, his Jewish "grooming for success" representative,

KultsiKN: Johann's daughters?

DenvToday: Actually, being Argentinian doesn't often make you "swarthy." Most are of Italian descent, and...

TAWN3: the Hispanic cop

DenvToday: ...they're not all swarthy either.

BPRAL22169: I've never actually met a dark-skinned Argentinan.

TAWN3: the Japanese suburban home owner, and all written in the early post WWII years!

BPRAL22169: I would have a hard time putting Johann's daughters in to any of the three categories --

BPRAL22169: just tiresome.

DJedPar: Yes Johann's daughters were finky.

BPRAL22169: Perhaps my memory is too vague: how or on what did they inform?

DJedPar: Ok... tiresome.

BPRAL22169: I hate winning by default.

DJedPar: :-D

KultsiKN: Sneaky?

TAWN3: Well, if nothing else, you have high speed bodyguards in IWFNE. Kind of the Counter spy side of the

DenvToday: TMIAHM is the ultimate in racial mixing. Quite daring for 1966. Most people are a stew of mixed race

TAWN3: house.

BPRAL22169: I don't doubt you could make a case for it -- but I'd like to find something you don't have

BPRAL22169: to argue quite so hard about.

BPRAL22169: Maybe "Bill" in CAT as a sneak.

TAWN3: Yes Denv.

BPRAL22169: or Bill The Cat. Gak!

TAWN3: TNIAHM is definitely a mixed background society.

DJedPar: That's correct Tawn.

DenvToday: Cats simply are. They simply assume that their nature is the natural order of things.

TAWN3: Ack!

BPRAL22169: I believe that is supposed to be the sound of a cat coughing up a hairball.

DenvToday: lol

BPRAL22169: Breath Berked has a lot to account for!

DenvToday: Yes. lol

BPRAL22169: Now there's a classic case of dialectical materialism at work: B. Kliban brings about

BPRAL22169: Breath Berked as its antithesis.

BPRAL22169: I see we are coming up to 5:00 p.m. PDT. Any last comments or remarks as we wind things up?

DenvToday: I've been thinking of a classic Gaham Wilson cartoon since we brought up smiley faces.

DJedPar: Hope nothing happened to AG

TAWN3: Hmmmmm, spies in the very first Juvie come to think of it.

DenvToday: A wonderfully sick one. It was Hitler and Goering zieg heiling...but instead of swastikas on their...

DenvToday: ...uniforms, it was all smiley faces.

TAWN3: So, spies and finks in the beginning, and all the way to the end?

TAWN3: of the Heinlein body of work?

BPRAL22169: I can't think of a "sneak" in Starship Troopers offhand.

BPRAL22169: or To Sail, either.

TAWN3: He was a realist who understood this was part of life, from the international level on down to the

TAWN3: small town level with the nosy neighbors!

DenvToday: Brian betrays Maureen in the end.

DenvToday: Very disappointed in Brian.

BPRAL22169: She didn't see it that way -- disappointed, yes,but not necessarily "betrayal" -- at least,

BPRAL22169: nto the way it actually worked out.

DJedPar: Me too. Bad Brian.

DenvToday: We still care about Brian--but we no longer trust him.

BPRAL22169: We didn't take up Miles and Belle in the Door Into Summer.

TAWN3: Hmmm

DavidWrightSr: Belle was definitely a 'sneak'

TAWN3: Oh, spies in the Sun Stone short story, which name escapes me at the moment.

BPRAL22169: I think I would agree.

BPRAL22169: Sun Stone? Sounds more like Little Fuzzy.

BPRAL22169: I would dearly like to know what RAH thought of H. Beam Piper.

DavidWrightSr: Miles was a 'fink', but a lot of it was due to Belle drugging him.

DavidWrightSr: Bill. Me. Too. Piper is a favorite of mine.

BPRAL22169: Mine, too. Piper and Pangborn -- we know what RAH thought of Pangborn.

TAWN3: No. Male and Female DR. He has hots for her. He invents Sun Stones (if I remember the name of them

TAWN3: correctly).

DavidWrightSr: Ship Stones?

DenvToday: And what about Eric Frank Russell?

TAWN3: Power companies try to wipe him out.

BPRAL22169: Shipstones?

DJedPar: Shipstones.

BPRAL22169: I think you mean the radiant sun power screen

TAWN3: He publishes the formula and losses profit but helps humanity.

DavidWrightSr: "Let there be light"?

BPRAL22169: Martin and Douglas. "Let There Be Light."

KultsiKN: Shipdtones

TAWN3: Part of the Future History.

BPRAL22169: I think RAH introduced Shipstones in Friday.

TAWN3: That may be it I thionk. LTBL. Sounds right.

BPRAL22169: The sunscreen didn't work out so he had to come up with a super-advanced storage battery

TAWN3: Nio. It is a short story.

KultsiKN: Definitely 'Let There Be Light'

BPRAL22169: "Let There be Light" is in "Menace from Earth," I believe.

TAWN3: Yes!!!!!

TAWN3: That's it.

BPRAL22169: It got dropped from the canon for reasons nobody is quite sure of.

DavidWrightSr: I'm trying to find a copy of 'Menace'. I want to read 'Bootstraps' and my wife wants

DavidWrightSr: to read 'The Year of the Jackpot'

DenvToday: I have Menace from Earth right here...

DenvToday: It's not in it.

DavidWrightSr: I want to do a timeline on 'Bootstraps' like I did for 'Zombies'

BPRAL22169: There are two editions of Menace. one with 6 stories and one with 4

DenvToday: Mine is a Baen paperback from 1999.

TAWN3: And wouldn't the resistance fighters in Sixth Column fall under the category of "spy" in siome cases.

DenvToday: First Baen printing was 1987

DavidWrightSr: Jeff was definitely a spy

BPRAL22169: That's the one I've got.

TAWN3: Lot's of spies in RAH/

TAWN3: Never realized how dominant an undertheme it was before!

fgherman: Have to go play cabdriver for the family

fgherman: Good night all.

DenvToday: TMFE I have has 8 stories in it.

fgherman has left the room.

DenvToday: Night fg

TAWN3: Makes you wonder how many spies are running around out there for real!

BPRAL22169: I got the book wrong -- it was Man Who Sold the moon with two editions.

BPRAL22169: Also with LTBL in it.

DavidWrightSr: Fader was a spy. Did anyone mention him?

BPRAL22169: The early 60

BPRAL22169: s Signet edition of TMWSTM had only 4 stories -- and no table of contents.

KultsiKN: Fader?

DavidWrightSr: From Coventry

DJedPar: Yes Fader was a good spy

BPRAL22169: The omit "Life-Line" and "Blowups Happen."

DenvToday: Not good. It's like omitting Adam.

BPRAL22169: And MacKinnon became a spy, too. That's another story I consider "important."

TAWN3: Spy in the beginning of Methuselah's Children. The bureacrat(?) or Reporter guy that Lazarus

TAWN3: dislikes from the moment he first ses him.

KultsiKN: Politician who has the hots for Mary?

TAWN3: Yep.

BPRAL22169: We are past the 5:00 hour. Are we done?

DavidWrightSr: He wasn't a spy.

DavidWrightSr: Just a jerk

TAWN3: That's the one.

DavidWrightSr: I've got the entire log.

TAWN3: Wasn't he turning over info on the Howards?

DenvToday: Yes, it's 8:04 EDT

TAWN3: Perhaps I remember it wrong.

BPRAL22169: You may close it when appropriate. 'night, all.

DavidWrightSr: He didn't know Mary was a Howard until she told him

KultsiKN: He spills the beans to Mary.

TAWN3: Ah. But he was a fink, no?

DavidWrightSr: Night Bill. Thanks for taking over the leadership

DJedPar: Good night Bill.

BPRAL22169 has left the room.

TAWN3: Bye Bill.

SAcademy: Goodnight Bill

DenvToday: Good night one and all. Great discussion as usual.

DenvToday: Good night SA. As always, a great pleasure.

KultsiKN: Night, Denv

SAcademy has left the room.

TAWN3: Goodnight Denv

DJedPar: Good Night Ginny.

DenvToday: Take care all!

DavidWrightSr: Good Night Ginny

TAWN3: Good Night Ginny.

DenvToday has left the room.

DavidWrightSr: Kultsi. you must be getting pretty sleepy by now

TAWN3: Anyone want to chat still?

TAWN3: What time is it there Kultsi?

DavidWrightSr: Sorry, I would like to but I've got to close up shop.

DJedPar: Good night all. Time to feed the cats.

TAWN3: ok

DavidWrightSr: Night Denis

TAWN3: Me too. Good night everyone!

KultsiKN: Not too much, but I'm about to go as well. Nite all!

KultsiKN has left the room.

DJedPar has left the room.

TAWN3 has left the room.

DavidWrightSr: Log officially closed at 8:09 P.M. EDT

Final End Of Discussion Log

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