Life Went Sideways

I was going to write a post I was, but life went sideways, as it will in 2020. Only maybe not, as it’s not bad, precisely. It’s just annoying.

You see, I had a sequel to Have Spacesuit dictate itself to me in my sleep. All of it.

So? says you.

So, of course I can’t sell it, so it’s sunk costs. I resisted as much as I could, but it was broken sleep, and I finally woke up enough — kind of — to roll to the computer by the bed (I being displaced form my office, just now, since it needs painting and flooring) and write the first three paragraphs.  After which, I decided to mow the lawn till the urge to just write the whole — unsalable by virtue of being unauthorized fanfic — mess out passed.

The lawn took very long because I had to deal with some issues.

And now we have a get together to go to, kind you don’t postpone.

And when I come back there will be a post for PJM to finish.

So. I’ll post tomorrow.

Meanwhile, beginning below with the caveat that I get details wrong on my own worlds, and I’m sure I got some wrong on this one. Meh.

It’s not for money and it’s three paragraphs. Call it an homage. As I said, I know it’s not something I can sell.  Will I write it? Lord only knows. Probably not because I hate wasted effort. If I do, no one will ever know.

Now, if I could just download it onto electrons?  Well…. it’s already all in my head.

BUT we don’t have the tech.

So how it happened was like this: Mother-thing needed help.

Wait, I’m telling it all wrong.

I had this workshop in the Mojave.  There was a house too, attached to it, but most of the time I ate and slept in the workshop. So, as you can imagine it was pretty well locked.

Mother kept saying someday girls would find me. I didn’t know she meant it literally.

I was very shocked when the door popped open. I mean, I’d made those locks.  So shocked that I jumped, so I had my hands on two of my guns.

Then stopped.  She was tall and red headed and mammalian, and wore this simple, molding jumpsuit thing that made her legs look like they went on forever, particularly atop those platform boot things that all the ads shows women in these days.

Mother says it’s expensive to look that cheap.

 I looked up to her face, where her lips were slightly parted, and her big eyes looked at me in shock.  She had freckles across her nose. She panted a little at me, and said, “Stop it, Kip.  Mother-thing needs our help.”

The picture fell into place like one of those puzzles you look at and know suddenly where every piece goes. I let go the guns and said, “Peewee!


101 thoughts on “Life Went Sideways

  1. I would LOVE to see this completed!!! He is/was my favorite author, and judging by the first three paragraphs you’ve nailed it. Even if it’s unsalable publicly, I hope you’ll complete it, and be willing to sell it to your subscribers.

  2. Well, I spent the morning hauling half a corpse into the basement.

    On the upside, it’s the corpse of a cow. Which we got for less than hamburger that’s on sale.

    (Yes, our butcher shop finally called to say it was ready for pickup! Whoo hoo!)

      1. If I can get some stuff sold, I’ll be in the market for a freezer too, although for me it also means the $$$ to have an electrician put a new circuit in the garage. I’d been hoping to do it after Tampa Bay Comic Con, when the promoter was assuring us vendors that yes, it was happening. But a mere week after the load-in instructions came through, we got another mailing with the bad news — it was being canceled for this year, and our booths rolled over to 2021.

        So as soon as I get my latest e-book up up and all the other e-books updated with teaser text for it, and four websites updated appropriately, I’m going to be listing more stuff on eBay — and a bunch of it on Craigslist as well, especially the old printers and monitors (although in the case of the HP 4250, I need to pull the RAM and move it into its replacement, which is also a 4250). I’m listing them as local pickup only on eBay, which limits my market, but otherwise the shipping would be impossible. I’m also going to list the vintage dolls on Craigslist, because they just aren’t moving on eBay.

        Right now I need to get outside and water the garden, and crop some obnoxious weeds in the back yard. then it’s back to work on getting that e-book up for tomorrow.

        1. Putting a new circuit in a garage is very simple if there’s an empty slot in the breaker panel. Get a new breaker, run some 12-2 Romex and put in a box and outlet. If all the slots are in use, get a 2-in-1 breaker that puts two circuits in one slot.

          I’ve done my own wiring for 30+ years. There are less than a dozen things you need to know for ordinary residential wiring.

          1. Twenty years ago, I might’ve tackled it. Unfortunately, at my age, I’m not sure I want to go climbing around in the attic to do the necessary pulling of wires (it’s a finished garage, not one with bare studs). If my brother the electrical engineer were out here, I might see if he could come over and put it in.

            1. You do know that being an electrical engineer and wiring a garage are two completely distinct skill sets, right?


              1. Well, I met a guy who was an electrician and an electrical engineer.

                Mechanical engineering could be understood as the discipline matching the plumbing trade. A mechanical engineer can definitely be so far into the weeds of theory that they are useless and incompetent as plumbers. Say, spending so much time on “how rough are these pipes”, and “given that, how wide should they be to make the flow rate tractable with my skills” that you completely forget running waste lines down hill.

    1. Yay for mass amounts of good meat! I worry the next time I get one that I’ll make some major mistake on deciding the number of steaks vs. roasts vs. stew meat vs. ground… but that’s the kind of mistake I can make disappear with more dishes!

      1. My thought is you always make as many roasts as possible, followed by as many steaks as possible. You can always cut it up smaller, or grind it up at need. You can’t put it back together.

        1. Where I find that roasts accumulate, due to the extra time involved in defrosting and extra work on chopping. That, I don’t care to grind my own hamburger; that’s too much like work. If I’m going to get a mass amount of meat to have conveniently at hand, by gosh and by golly, it should be convenient!

      1. Ours has an agreement with a local butcher that they take the animal and get it to hanging state, but after that it’s on the buyer, which is really nice when most of the guys buying are single or at most have a girlfriend.

        Worked out great, this time Elf just said “we have six kids ten and under, and my wife likes the crockpot. Can you divide stuff up based on your best judgment for that?”
        Chopped a good $75 bucks off of our butcher bill– they didn’t have to wrap all the steaks two by two, put all the hamburger into those silly plastic bags that hold about a pound instead of having a bunch of half pounds– only took 1/3 more storage than last year, and it’s more than half again as much meat.

        1. We got 1/2 a pig last two winters. This year’s was a bit late and smaller as the hobby farmer had difficulty getting the piglets. First year we took the butcher’s advice. There are just 3 of us. This year I said no ham’s or ham steaks. No spiced sausage ground (OMG it was good, spiced just right … it didn’t like us, it is a pain getting old), just ground meat. Basically it was “AS much Pepper Bacon and Ribs as possible. No ham or ham steaks, best cuts otherwise, grind the rest, no organ meat.” The next one I’ll add “no roasts”. Half a pig fits just fine in the 5 cu ft freezer (Costco) with room left.

          1. We’re not doing quarter/half critters yet, but occasionally Fred Meyer will have a really good sale on pork shoulder. (Usually a buy one, get one free.) That gets roasted and cut up into dinner sized portions, and frozen in the big upright freezer. (It’s a bit smaller than the older Whirlpool, but we had so much trouble with that piece of #$%^, we’re not getting Whirlpool anything ever again. Warped door combined with a design that lets moisture accumulate in the door, leading to ice inside the door, no way I want to see that again. I still want to meet the design team, preferably in a back alley.) We’ll get a deli turkey breast and do much the same; have to look to make sure it doesn’t have any gluten additives. though; way too many do.

            In town, right now, the only place I can have a sit-down lunch that won’t try to kill me is at the taqueria. Even then, I have to avoid their home made salsas; some cooks use flour to thicken the sauce and my GI system has an unpleasant reaction to such a day later. The other places either are takeout only, or have absurd restrictions. One diner has a “no hands on the door handles; we’ll open the door for you” policy. The Chinese place that did landoffice business at lunch is barely functional with takeout only. I’ll get dinner-to-go there at lunchtime, and might see one other car when the parking lot would normally be 90% full. I’m pessimistic that they can recover intact. Possible location move and take-out only is my medium-optimistic scenario, though eventual toes-up is most likely.

    2. >> “Well, I spent the morning hauling half a corpse into the basement.”

      [raised eyebrow]

      So, were you trying to freak out anyone in particular by leading with that or was that just on general principle?

      1. I suspect that a flair for the dramatic is simply an occupational hazard around here.

        It does sound like the beginning of an interesting story, opening up all sorts of alarming questions in one simple, efficient sentence. How did she wind up with half a corpse? Which half is it — top, bottom, left, right, front or back? Who was it? Will he (or she) be missed? Were there witnesses? Why haul it into the basement? What happened to the other half? Might it make an inconvenient appearance in Chapter 4?

        So many, many hooks to hang a story on.
        What’s more dangerous than a polar bear? A bipolar bear!

  3. Well you could write it and leave instructions for your heirs to have it published as soon as copyright protection expires.

    1. Will it ever? Aren’t we about due for another retroactive extension (which regardless of what the SCUS says I can’t see how that doesn’t violate Article I).

      1. Probably not much, if it’s as tied into the existing characters and events as it sounds like.

  4. So, it’s Fan Fiction. So what? Is it GOOD? It starts out that way.

    I don’t think any good story is a waste. Sounds like this one wants out of your head. I say, let it out. If you don’t, it will just cause trouble in there, interfere with your other stories and give you a headache.

    There are huge web sites full of Fan Fiction. Some of it is really good. (Sturgeon’s Law still applies) To me, good Fan Fiction stories are good stories.
    At my house, the “things that go bump in the night” are cats.

  5. You’d think if RAH decided to dictate a sequel he’d include the secret code word that would tell his estate to let you publish it.

    OTOH, maybe that was up next and you woke up.

    “OK, so we’re wrapping up, and Kip says… Wait! Don’t wake up! Darnit, there she goes…”

    “Yeah, I usually start off with the most important stuff.”

    1. Sarah’s an established writer, and if I remember right knows Virginia Heinlein. Might not hurt to simply ask her or whoever is managing RAH’s estate.

      Ten qatloos says Sarah does a better RAH than Spider Robinson.

  6. Talk to Toni she might know who has the rights. I mean Scalzi wrote a rewrite of Fuzzy novel. And somebody just published a Heinlein alternate rework of The Number of the Beast!

    1. The latter was authorized, working from RAH’s notes, and with David Webber doing the editing bits.

      Silly question: has Disney used up enough of their markers to prevent another copyright extension bill?

    2. Except for a very few bits and pieces (mostly non-fiction like the rare blood article for Encyclopedia Britannica), all of the rights are under the control of the Robert A. and Virginia Heinlein Prize Trust.

  7. Alright! I know it’s Fan-Fiction but I want more!!!! 😀

  8. So, of course I can’t sell it, so it’s sunk costs.

    Are you sure the estate wouldn’t allow it? I mean, they let Spider Robinson finish a Heinlein book and of late he isn’t as worthy an heir as you.

  9. As I recall the legend, the original downloaded itself upon The Master and was written in all of a day. So ’tis apparent the muse of this tale is a very insistent (one might even say, pushy) gal. Do not fight her, as who can know what weapons she might have in her armoire, nor what she may do to get her way?

    “Publishing” it here is entirely appropriate and reasonable, so do not fight this … although rattling the tip jar might be appropriate as a way of scaring off the wee muse.

    1. If the Muse keeps weapons in her armoire, where does she keep her clothes? Then again, Alys Vorpatril will tell you that the proper clothes ARE weapons…
      Count Piotr: “Woman! Where have you been?”
      Cordelia: “Shopping. Want to see what I bought?”

  10. Hey, why not write the whole thing? Your muse gave you a story for free, after so long fighting her for words, and you turn it down?

    Maybe this is the thing that lets you unplug the dam and words, glorious words pour forth! (Your poor wrists. Get a couple soft carpal tunnel braces.)

      1. It’s always one or the other, isn’t it? I now have time, briefly, but with the sinus infection, the main words throughout my day are my brain telling itself “don’t throw up your antibiotics; you paid good money for that!”

          1. You have to run out of rooms — unless the architect was Quintus Teal 😀

  11. I’ve occasionally woke up full of some scene, and once a whole section. My MC would prefer that I take mind-numbing sleeping pills.

  12. Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeease write it. I really really want to read the rest of it. Agree with the above about asking the estate. It surely wouldn’t hurt…

  13. Incidentally, I’ve never thought of Peewee as a redhead. Maybe she’s described as such, but not my mental picture of her…

      1. She isn’t described as a redhead but since her hair-color isn’t apparently mentioned, she could be a redhead.

        But of course, she may die her hair. 😀

        1. Always possible, of course. She did say she’d be “a dish” in a few years, so she might have helped the process along, but she always stuck me as brunette or dirty blond, and a bit too practical to bother with dye.
          In any case, I’ve always wanted to know how she and Kip ended up getting back together, so give in to the Muse! I’d totally donate towards the end product, whether it could be published or not, as long as I can read it!

          1. From the book, I thought they would know each other all along as she was growing up. Her father was glad she had a friend as smart as she was.

            1. It has been a while since I “read” (excellent audible production, BTW) the tale, but I vaguely recall having the feeling that Kip was likely to be a regular guest at Peewee’s house. Seems unlikely he’d fly home for short school breaks and her father seemed to take a shine to Kip.

              Of course, once he’d completed his degree(s) and moved into research it is likely she’d have still had some class time left to put in … I could see her going to one of those truly exclusive colleges such as the one I recall in the Nevada desert that was a tuition-free, paid for by students working its ranch.

              Deep Springs College
              Deep Springs College is a small, private liberal arts junior college in Deep Springs, California. With fewer than 30 students at any given time, the college is one of the smallest institutions of higher education in the United States.[citation needed] After completing two years at Deep Springs, students may elect to receive an associate degree, though this seldom happens in practice. … Deep Springs is founded on three principles, commonly called the “three pillars”: academics, labor, and self-governance.

              In addition to studies, students work a minimum of 20 hours a week either on the ranch and farm attached to the college or in positions related to the college and community. … By virtue of its small enrollment, the number of alumni is low, and most continue their studies at other universities. Deep Springs alumni have been awarded Rhodes and Truman Scholarships, three MacArthur “genius grants”, two Pulitzer Prizes, one Emmy award, and one E. O. Lawrence Award, among other honors.

              except put it on Luna where they can do serious physics research.

              1. Wyoming Catholic, where you have a horse and a rifle, but you can’t bring your cellphone or Internet connection because they are way out in the waybacks.

                (They also don’t have to lock their doors at the faculty houses except against bears, so somebody posted a funny story about a visiting big city parent not realizing that “unlocked kitchen door” didn’t mean “official administration building or dorm.”)

    1. I just keyword-searched the text for “hair”, and it mentions her hair was short, but no character has their hair color mentioned. I checked the magazine version too.

      I have been reluctant to give up paper for electronic storage, but lack of space has forced me to embrace the new or do without. Doubtless people felt the same way when they gave up proper clay tablets for that newfangled paper stuff. A good baked tablet would last almost forever, and paper would fall apart when it got wet. But you could pack alot more paper on a shelf than on tablets…

      On the other hand, a few clicks and I can access a server two thousand miles away and read the Epic of Gilgamesh, the earliest recovered work of fiction, over four thousand years old. Or click again, and have the voices of the djinni read it out loud to me. A whim forms, my fingers move, my desire is filled almost instantly. Not all progress is without merit.

      1. For that matter, I don’t believe there’s anything in the text declaring Kip White, Anglo-Saxon or even Protestant.

        Nor ought there be … but you make him Black & Asian and imagine the ‘splodey-heads.

  14. Yes!! You channeled RH! Or he sent it on down.
    I happened to have just finished rereading TMIAHM and it’s as if I just picked up his next book.
    And my copy fell in the gutter as I was flipping the first page. Damn!

    1. has scans of the issues of Worlds of IF that TMIAHM originally appeared in. starts it off.

      The magazine version is longer than the novel version. As it happens, I started reading it yesterday. So far I haven’t noticed much difference other than more “Loonie talk”; some words that aren’t in the novel. The size difference is somewhere around 45Kb; I’m hoping for a “missing scene”. Some of the other stories I’ve read where the magazine version was longer, it was just a lot of “fat trimming” – extra adjectives deleted, wordy sentences tightened up, that sort of thing, and TMIAHM is definitely wordy…

      Incidentally, the largest proportion of what I consider “best SF” that appeared in the magazines came from Worlds of IF, followed by Galaxy and F&SF neck and neck, with Astoundng/Analog in fourth place. And even though I always thought of Heinlein as a Campbell author:

      Astounding – Citizen of the Galaxy, Double Star, Methuselah’s Children, Orphans of the Sky, Sixth Column

      F&SF – Door Into Summer, Glory Road, Have Spacesuit, Will Travel, The Star Beast, Starship Troopers

      Galaxy – I Will Fear No Evil, The Puppet Masters

      Worlds of IF – Farnham’s Freehold, The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, Podkayne of Mars

      Not all of his novels were published in magazines first, though.

      Zelazny’s first two Amber books were published in the ordinary way, but the second two were printed in Galaxy before the novels came out. And the Galaxy versions are longer… like TMIAHM, I grew up with those stories, though three-year gap between The Guns of Avalon and The Sign of the Unicorn was huge, considering I was a preteen when I read Guns…

  15. Darn it. I was already getting behind on the kindle books I want to read. Now there is another on there. Have Space Suit might have been the first Heinlein I stumbled across at the Library in about ’63 or ’64, but I haven’t reread it since. This should be fun.

    1. You’re in for a treat! Definitely one of my favorite and most re-read RAH books. I recall our hostess mentioning she wanted to write a sequel to it previously. Here’s hoping her Muse finally makes it happen (sorry to wish that on you, Sarah, but I’m selfish like that)!

  16. “An old family recipe:
    ‘Eye of newt and toe of frog,
    ‘Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
    ‘Adder’s fork and blind-worm’s sting,
    ‘Lizard’s leg and howlet’s wing—’ ”
    “Shakespeare!” I said. “Macbeth.”
    “ ‘Cool it with a baboon’s blood—’ No, Will got it from me, milord love. That’s the way with writers; they’ll steal anything, file off the serial numbers, and claim it for their own.”
    RAH, Glory Road

  17. On a totally different topic (forgive me for bringing current events back), July 1 Oregon’s governor put an order in place mandating masks in all indoor facilities. Of the four stores that I have visited since then (large chain stores not mom&pop) only one – Walnart – has enforced it. The others have at least small signs up, but ignore it if you ignore them,

    1. The smaller stores in Klamath County usually have a sign “crediting” Kate for the requirement. The vet office/supply place says if you cannot wear a mask, they’ll do a curbside arrangement. They alluded to some decidedly unhappy clients with a request to not take it out on the staff.

      At Home Desperate, people were wearing masks, but a lot of them were mouth-only, and at least a few were neck-warmers.

      Her threat of “if you don’t mask up, I’ll lock down again” is particularly despicable. One size fits all, like Procrustes. No matter if you’ve had it or your risk group. (Hmm, Procrustes. The Theseus solution comes to mind…)

      1. Seeing a fair number of stores in central Michigan with, “according to the governor…” signs. (We RV).

  18. Okay I’m going to play stupid guy here. Why on earth would a sequel to Have Space Suit Will Travel written by you not be sellable?

    1. Spacesuit is owned by the Heinlein Estate and anybody who wanted to Sell a sequel to it would have to get permission from the Heinlein Estate.

      Sarah could write the sequel to it for her own enjoyment but trying to publish it (without permission) would get the Heinlein Estate after her.

  19. Hmmm… Fanfic is legal no? And Mrs. Hoyt has a Patreon (ptuii-!) account And if we chose, the Huns and Hoydens could make donations to it between, say, now and August. At some point Mrs Hoyt could feel financially omfortable enough to waste her time writing fan fic. And she could, say, each month, give Patreon donors access from time to time to her fan fic.

    I sppose….

    1. Check the Terms of Service of Patreon. They say anything you publish there, they own the rights to. Which is why many savvy artists have a patreon, but the actual art is all elsewhere, and only links are published on PAtreon’s site.

      Now, I know our wonderful hostess is not, ah, the most tech savvy person amoung us, and I really wouldn’t wish juggling patreon, yet another site, here, her website, and any others upon her. (I wouldn’t wish it on myself, either, to be clear!) We’d get magnificent rants about technology, but not so much in the way of story, eh?

      1. I don’t use patreon AT ALL. Dan set up the account. I have no interest in it. Dan thought it would be a way to put out stuff and get donations BEFORE INDIE WAS FULLY VIABLE.
        I have no intention of having patreon.
        Eh, Dot. It’s only SOME tech I can’t navigate, mostly because all the instructions are electronic.
        Patreon looks okay tech wise, but I’d rather write than beg.
        And hobbit, fanfic is legal…. kind of.
        If authors (or copyright holders) know of it and don’t stomp it they might actually endanger their copyright.
        A lot of media companies pretend not to know. Anne McCaffrey stomped pretty hard on Pern fanfic groups, though and that I know they still do not exist.
        I do not wish to have to hire lawyers or get in trouble with the Heinlein estate thank you so much.

        1. *tailwraps Sarah’s leg and looks up with wide kitten eyes* I tease, I tease.

          Fanfic endangers the author’s ability to trademark, not their original copyright.

          The latter is a misunderstanding that has produced some wild-eyed screeching from publishing houses that ought to know better as they have legal staff, and from authors who don’t read the law and understand it. Also, mass unhappiness from authors who aren’t good at case law, and aren’t sure how this will impact them, and after dealing with the rapacious predatory claws of publishing houses, are understandable prone to defense first. And lastly, from some authors who damn well do understand it, have trademarked their intellectual property, and are making a decent income off licensing that trademark and wish to continue to do so. And they do not appreciate being lumped in with the rest, oy, do they not.

          That said, fanfic is only legal *in the USA* under parody or fair use, and fair use is a legal term with a 4-pronged challenge. The first being – it must be non-commercial. So selling cute slytherin-chibi t-shirts is not fair use, and as such, if the artist did not gain the author’s permission, deserves to be legally stomped on, no matter how cute it is.

          Sadly, this also involves publishing Heinlein fanfic for remuneration. As Sarah well knows, and therefore why, for all I may tease her, I know that if there’s an option between paying words and fanfic, she’s going to choose something that can pay for vet bills and flooring supplies. Because authors like to eat, too.

        2. I’ve never used Patreon; I’m more comfortable with PayPal. So, I sent you some via PayPal.

      2. The developer for the Pale Moon fork of Firefox dropped Patreon because donations would be partially taxed diverted to various woke organizations, rather than what the donors were actually supporting. Makes sense; the developer is based in the Netherlands.

        Gab keeps getting deplatformed (Visa dumping them *and* the leader and his family was a draconian touch), and is now reliant on checks from supporters. Works for them.

    2. No. Copyrighted works are not available for fanfic unless copyright owners make them so.
      Jane Austen, Dumas, etc.? Well no longer under copyright. Anything is legal.

  20. Re: filing off serial numbers — I don’t see any particular difficulty. The backstory is, “So when we were kids, we got kidnapped by aliens — maybe subpoenaed by aliens is more to the point. The court case went okay, which is why we’re all still alive and so are you, but if you’ve ever read about it, all the names and details were changed and you thought it was fiction. This is fiction, too. Don’t try to find us.”

    1. But it might be easier to write first and file off serial numbers later. Then again, maybe the real story is easier. You could avoid a lot of specifically Heinlein stuff that way. Writer’s/dictation taker’s choice.

      Anyhiw, my point is that you don’t have to name the same names in the final version, and that the backstory for a sequel does not have to be so extensive as to give the game away when the numbers are filed off.

      Mr. Wright managed to give a whole non-existent English children’s fantasy full of backstory in “One Bright Star to Guide Them,” and it didn’t hurt the sequel to have had no prequel.

      And it is fashionable right now to have a lot of “I wrote a book for X franchise, but don’t tell anyone even though it is obvious where the serial numbers used to be.”

  21. Btw, EWTN’s Mass this morning had an interesting homily about the relation between our founding documents and values, and living out Catholic faith… Followed by the all-male friar version of the choir singing “God Bless America,” and the nice optional July 4 offertory preface being chanted by the priest. (John Adams’ face in Heaven was probably a study when he first heard someone chanting “Our founding fa-a-athers.” ) And the Communion hymn is “I Vow to Thee My Country,” which is hardcore.

    This kind of stuff drives Europeans nuts, so EWTN always tries to be explanatory.

    (And to be fair, it is theoretically possible to Go Too Far with blending Catholicism with patriotism, which (among other less fun stuff about sucking up to civil authorities) is officially known as the heresy of Americanism. But that is another story.)

    Anyway, EWTN Masses are on YouTube and their own website, so folks can watch the rerun and jump to parts they like.

    1. They also did a Communion motet, Billings’ early American song “When Jesus Wept, the Falling Tear.” Gorgeous job.

      The various EWTN choir lineups have really gotten tons better the last few years, which is really impressive with the friars not having been selected for having great or trained voices already, and with even the trained laypeople showing that improved skills make a big difference.

    2. > is officially known as the heresy of Americanism. But that is another story.

      [interested enough to spend half an hour reading articles]

      What I’m getting out of it is that Leo XIII probably thought he was giving a friendly piece of guidance to the Americans with his encyclical, and the American churchmen, who didn’t see they were doing anything wrong, didn’t take it that way at all. If it had been informal it might have been different, but “do as you’re told, and it’s OFFICIAL” resulted in much resentment.

      I also learned that the specific meaning of “encyclical” varied considerably over time, starting off as something more or less like a chain letter and now more or less like a Presidential executive order. And that Leo XIII issued a buttload of them (85) while half of the Popes since the American Revolution were down in the single digits. (2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9)

      So, partly Euro-vs-US cultural difference, partly that Leo XIII was really fond of giving orders.

      [and, yes, I’m aware that I may have missed the point entirely and that it was a much bigger deal than as I see it; I’m not a cleric…]

      1. The thing about American culture, is that it is heavily influenced by Protestantism, because most of the original colonists were nominally some flavor of Protestant. The culture of a disestablished church is an artifact of mixing incompatible flavors of Protestant, and the cease fire they ‘negotiated’.

        A lot of the European Protestant churches are established. If one is deeply immersed enough in European Church history, there are periods where the Catholic church was either the established church of a country, or was officially oppressed.

        A charitable take is that many of the flavors of Protestant which influence American culture are or were formal believers that the Pope is the Anti-Christ. American cultural influence could thus lead Catholics into error.

        A more hostile take is that European part of the Catholic Church’s bureaucracy may well assume that the Catholic Church is oppressed in America so long as it is not established.

        Third hand take, historically the Catholic Church has politically intervened in favor of regimes that establish it, with interventions that would now be considered reactionary. The current Pope is deep into Liberation theology, which is maybe not consistent with those historical interventions. If both are formal teachings, then the Catholic Church will eventually have to sort out which one is the heresy.

      2. If I remember correctly, the big problem was that it wasn’t happening— it was something like the French accused the Americans of doing something, and the Pope said “well, if anybody is doing XYZ, that’s bad,” and then the guys in America who agreed with the French started accusing folks of it…. dang it, I need to go dig that up. BRB.

        Here we go!

        It’s technically an article by me, but I was just linking an article by someone else, and Donald in the comments linked to an earlier article where he’d explained the situation. Most of this goes on in the comments.

        Here’s the best summarizing chunk I can find:

        Cardinal Gibbons and the rest of the American heirarchy responded that no one among them taught these propositions that were condemned:

        1.undue insistence on interior initiative in the spiritual life, as leading to disobedience
        2.attacks on religious vows, and disparagement of the value of religious orders in the modern world
        3.minimizing Catholic doctrine
        4.minimizing the importance of spiritual direction

        They were really scratching their heads on this one and had a hard time figuring out why the Pope was concerned with a non-problem in this country.

        This tempest in a papal tea pot had more to do with the French Church. A biography of Father Isaac Hecker, founder of the Paulists and now a Servant of God, was mistranslated into French and portrayed Father Hecker as some sort of flaming radical which he was not. This book became popular among liberal Catholics in France. As usual the relationship
        between the French Church and the Vatican was turbulent at this time. Pope Leo XIII’s concern about “Americanism” could have better been labeled a concern about “Frenchism”. Purportedly Leo XIII was reluctant to attack the Church in America, which he had often praised, and made his rebuke of “Americanism” as soft as possible.
        (clipping link)

        The statements of loyalty from the American heirarchy were sufficient for the Pope and “Americanism” vanished from history as quickly as it appeared.

        1. That’s right, the Fr. Hecker bad bio thing, which is one big reason Hecker was not canonized. Very similar to the bad Italian translation of St. Faustina Kowalska, which discredited the Divine Mercy movement outside Poland, and led to the partial Polish Catholic schism in the US.

          It was fictional American Catholic life, sorta like taking anime as gospel about Japanese life.

          1. So basically, Fr. Hecker needs a supportive pope (or American Catholics getting taught more of their history… I know I am ignorant about US Catholic heritage.)

              1. Wellll, okay, though I think usually not with enthusiasm for America as the selected higher priority….

  22. Odd timing. My wife is reading “Starship Troopers” and we talked about RAH.
    I mentioned his juvenile novels and described “Have Spacesuit – Will Travel.”
    Great intro, and the thought of not just the sequel you described, but sequels to the other juveniles make me all tingly with delight.

    1. I would boycott the NBA but am unable to, for the same reason I am unable to give up cigarettes, pedophilia and beating my spouse.

      One interesting comment dropped on the Wall Street Journal Editorial Board program was that one effect of the Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue decision is that we may well see a boom in private & charter schools, as the states cannot ban parents from sending their kids there.

      It is to be devoutly hoped. States willing to enact enabling legislation will likely soon outperform those restricting parental choice. Imagine in a second Trump term if DeVos enacts regulations tying federal education funding to kids rather than school systems.

  23. If you can figure out the legalities, PLEASE finish the sequel to HSWT – I’ll buy it.

    Have Spacesuit, Will Travel was the second SF I ever read (after Rocket Ship Galileo); seems I had exhausted the local library collection of westerns and needed to change

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