Category Archives: speed/slowness

“X Marks the Pedwalk,” Fritz Leiber, 1963

“X Marks the Pedwalk,” Fritz Leiber, 1963 — Pedestrians and drivers locked in conflict. Comments: Read in Nightmare Age.  The band “X Marks the Pedwalk” is named after this story.The story is referenced “glancingly” in Danse Macabre by Stephen King … Continue reading

Posted in 1960-1969, american culture, cars/pedestrians, ecology/the environment, progress/obsolescence, speed/slowness | 1 Comment

“You Are With It!,” Will Stanton, 1961

“You Are With It!,” Will Stanton, 1961 — A man in the midst of his normal domestic routine leaves for work and is accosted by a man who declares himself “the host.”  For the next ninety minutes, while the clock … Continue reading

Posted in 1960-1969, american culture, consumerism, genrecraft, identity/authenticity, love/family/children, male anxiety, masculinity, psych/mind/madness, reality/VR/surreal, satire, spectatorship/voyeurism, speed/slowness, surveillance, television, theatre/performance, time/history/causality, violence | Leave a comment

“Old Hundreth,” Brian Aldiss, 1960

“Old Hundreth,” Brian Aldiss, 1960 – A story of far earth and the human calvacade that marched through time to reach it, now transcended (uploaded) to a static plane of mingled personality.  This long-forgotten human civilization has left behind its … Continue reading

Posted in 1960-1969, animals/insects, cyborgs/posthumans, evolution, favorites, museums/artifacts, music, religion/soul/spirituality, speed/slowness, the body, violence, war/soldiers | 1 Comment

“Build-up,” J.G. Ballard, 1957

“Build-up,” J.G. Ballard, 1957 – (Alternate title: “Concentration City“) Overpopulation in the future has led to such building density that an aspiring aircraft designer and physics student, Franz, can’t find enough “free space” to “re-discover” the concept of flight.  He … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, agency/will/freedom, capitalism/Marxism, cities/architecture/habitats, knowledge/truth/epistemology, logic/reason, memory, myth, overpopulation, physicians/medicine, psych/mind/madness, religion/soul/spirituality, senses/space, speed/slowness, time/history/causality, utopia/dystopia | Leave a comment

“Dio,” Damon Knight, 1957

“Dio,” Damon Knight, 1957 — (Alternate title: “The Dying Man”)  The world is composed of two immortal classes–the pampered Players and the responsible Planners and their students.  Their lives of hedonism and leisurely scholarship, respectively, are progressing as planned until … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, aesthetics/beauty, american culture, artists/creativity, cities/architecture/habitats, class/labor/"work", consumerism, cyborgs/posthumans, death/immortality, difference/tolerance, disease/plague, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, freaks/misfits, love/family/children, masculinity, mourning/grief, museums/artifacts, sex/reproduction/sterility, spectatorship/voyeurism, speed/slowness, suicide, superhumans, the body, the Other, time/history/causality | Leave a comment

“Mantage,” Richard Matheson, 1959

“Mantage,” Richard Matheson, 1959 — A writer wishes that life could be experienced in the same way as in a movie–all tedium glossed over, highlights only.  The rest of his life takes 85 minutes. Comments: Read in Science Fiction Showcase. … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, artists/creativity, favorites, genrecraft, memory, photo/film/image, speed/slowness, time/history/causality | 1 Comment

“Horrer Howce,” Margaret St. Clair, 1956

“Horrer Howce,” Margaret St. Clair, 1956 — An entrepreneur visits a reclusive old man who is looking for investors in his unfinished horror house.  Jaded by his experience with the latest in such entertainments, the investor isn’t impressed by the … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, cars/pedestrians, genrecraft, horror, media/advertising, spectatorship/voyeurism, speed/slowness, violence | Leave a comment

The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester, 1956 (Novel)

The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester, 1956 (Novel)  — Gulley Foyle, the last survivor of The Nomad, has been ‘shipwrecked’ in space.  The possibility of rescue appears, but the ship deliberately continues on, leaving him to die.  His quest for … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, agency/will/freedom, bureaucracy/corporations, class/labor/"work", distance, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, senses/space, speed/slowness, violence | Leave a comment

“Fair,” John Brunner, 1956

“Fair,” John Brunner, 1956 — A man rides an escalator to the top of the “fair.” Along the way, he muses on media saturation, speed, loss of intimacy, generational conflict, youth, the dumbing down of culture, guilt for the wars … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, american culture, atomic bomb/Hiroshima, communication, consumerism, difference/tolerance, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, generational conflict, international, love/family/children, media/advertising, nationalism, race/civil rights, senses/space, speed/slowness, the body, the Other, war/soldiers | Leave a comment

“Common Time,” James Blish, 1953

“Common Time,” James Blish, 1953 – Time is subjective, especially when traveling near light speed.  A traveler wakes up during a flight and is trapped in a moment.  He encounters dream-like beings and his experiences become indescribable. When he returns … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, astronauts, senses/space, sex/reproduction/sterility, speed/slowness, time/history/causality | 1 Comment

“The Great Fog,” H. F. Heard, 1944

“The Great Fog,” H. F. Heard, 1944 – Biologists and metereologists learn that a slight change in humidity has a given a mold a growth spurt.  This mold is capable of producing its own humid climate. It eventually covers the … Continue reading

Posted in 1940-1945, aesthetics/beauty, artists/creativity, cities/architecture/habitats, communication, ecology/the environment, favorites, language/libraries, memory, music, photo/film/image, speed/slowness, time/history/causality | Leave a comment

“Sanity,” Fritz Leiber, 1944

“Sanity,” Fritz Leiber, 1944 – “Modern life” has driven everyone insane, but the World Manager has a secret ten-year plan. Comments: Themes include the relativity of sanity, conventions/norms, pretending, media, simulation, the pace of modern life, and neuroses. Read in … Continue reading

Posted in 1940-1945, identity/authenticity, interior/exterior, media/advertising, paranoia/schitzophrenia, psych/mind/madness, speed/slowness | Leave a comment

“The Roads Must Roll,” Robert A. Heinlein, 1940

“The Roads Must Roll,” Robert Heinlein, 1940 – Moving walkways have taken the place of roads and the man in charge must keep them rolling. Comments: A story of class, labor, technology’s influence on society, cars, pedestrians, natural resources, a … Continue reading

Posted in 1940-1945, capitalism/Marxism, cars/pedestrians, cities/architecture/habitats, class/labor/"work", ecology/the environment, function/utility/skeumorphs, mechanization, speed/slowness | Leave a comment

“The Revolt of the Pedestrians,” David H. Keller, MD, 1928

“The Revolt of the Pedestrians,” David H. Keller, MD, 1928 – Society has divided itself into in the atrophied, vaguely cybernetic “drivers” and tribes of death-defying “pedestrians.” Comments: Note: Keller is identified by Michael R. Page in The Man With … Continue reading

Posted in 1926-1939, cars/pedestrians, cyborgs/posthumans, evolution, progress/obsolescence, speed/slowness, violence | Leave a comment

“The Coming of the Ice,” G. Peyton Wertenbaker, 1926

“The Coming of the Ice,” G. Peyton Wertenbaker, 1926 – A scientist (Sir John) discovers that by removing the ability to reproduce, one can live forever.  Our bodies are continually changing, he explains, being replaced, bit by bit; reproduction dams … Continue reading

Posted in 1926 and earlier, 1926-1939, death/immortality, emotions/intimacy/empathy, evolution, genrecraft, hubris/pride, intelligence, love/family/children, speed/slowness, the body, the scientist | Leave a comment

The Time Machine, H. G. Wells, 1895 (novel)

The Time Machine, H. G. Wells, 1895 (novel) Comments: Excerpts read in A Century of Science Fiction dealing with the presentation of the machine to a room of educated men, and a selection focusing on the perceptions and sense of … Continue reading

Posted in 1926 and earlier, senses/space, speed/slowness, the scientist, time/history/causality | Leave a comment

“The New Accelerator,” H. G. Wells, 1901

“The New Accelerator,” H. G. Wells, 1901 – A new drug speeds up the perception of time. Two young men experiment with the drug and one finds the experience somewhat terrifying. Comments: Deals with themes of scientific irresponsibility, time, perception, … Continue reading

Posted in 1926 and earlier, drugs/pharma, international, senses/space, speed/slowness, the scientist, time/history/causality | Leave a comment

“Mellonta Tauta,” Edgar Allan Poe, 1848

“Mellonta Tauta,” Edgar Allan Poe, 1848 – The narrator (Pundita) is in a balloon (the “Skylark”), traveling at dizzying speed while waxing philosophically—yet incorrectly–about the past. An artifact from the now defunct “Amrrican” civilization is located. Comments: A story about … Continue reading

Posted in 1926 and earlier, favorites, knowledge/truth/epistemology, language/libraries, museums/artifacts, narrative, natural/artificial, progress/obsolescence, satire, speed/slowness, the scientist, time/history/causality | Leave a comment