Cat Furniture Part Two

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 25, 2011

This journey was funneled by Cat’s Cradle. Here is Part one.
9- Vice President in charge of volcanoes John goes to Ilium, NY, to work on his book. This is a fictitious city, that appears in many Vonnegut visions. The concept of an imaginary city, with imaginary police, garbage collectors, and village idiot, is much beloved by lawsuit conscious publishers.
10- Secret Agent x-9 John gets drunk with a whore in this chapter. She went to school with Franklin Hoenikker, but didn’t know him. Alcohol facilitates conversation on a wide range of subjects, which makes retired drunks wonder what to talk about. This is usually better than wondering how to explain away something foolish you have said.

11-Protein The mad scientist Hoenikker was supposed to talk at the graduation of the whore’s class. He didn’t show up, so the bartender talks about the meaning of life. It has something to do with protein. The titles of the chapters were supposed to be lower case, but there is a strong instinct to make the first letter of the first word capitals. That is capital with an a. The only word which has an o in capitol is a government building downtown, the state capitol. You know this because the capitol building has a rotunda, which is round like an o.

12- End of the world delight John and the whore, whose name is Sandra, are still in the bar, when an ancient bartender comes over to tell John about the scene in this bar on August 6, 1944. The ancient bartender had a nose like a prize strawberry. In the story the bar is the Cape Cod Room, and has a nautical theme. In 1944, it was the Navajo TeePee, and was decorated in Early Americana.

13-The jumping off place John meets Asa Breed, the big dog at the company that owns Ilium. In 1782, a man was hung in the town square of Ilium. The man, named George Minor Moakley, had killed 26 people, or at least those were the ones they could pin on him. Police record keeping is not an exact science. So, before his execution, he composed a song about his murders, and he sang it before they put the hood over his head, which tends to muffle singing. Moakley was not sorry for the murders.

14-when automobiles had cut glass vases John and Mr. Breed were going to a building that had 30k employees. This meant a lot of cars were trying to fit into the parking lot. The police tried to instruct the traffic where to go, and the author used the phrase “glacier of automobiles”.
One night in 1983, PG was driving to the omni to see the police. He was driving a 1970 Plymouth Satellite, painted gold, just like Dekalb county drove in the early seventies. PG’s friend Bradley was talking about the concept of glacial swiftness. As the car went down Spring Street, near the Varsity, the omnoids noticed a lot of cars on the road, creating a condition of glacial swiftness. It turns out the Georgia Tech had a football game that night, hence the mass of cars, moving with glacial swiftness. PG started to cross North Avenue, when a car decided that red lights were for other people. Since PG started out of traffic lights slowly, this person got by without causing any damage.

15- Merry Christmas John and Asa Breed are moving through the bowels of the company building, when they have a chat with Miss Pefko. She types letters for a researcher, and says they may as well be foreign languages. Miss Pefko says that Asa Breed thinks too much.
PG has been told that he thinks too much. When he worked at Redo Blue, across the walkway was the Digital Imaging Manager. or D.I.M. The D.I.M. was a libertarian. He used to be a republican, but was disillusioned when the Contract on America turned out to be a worthless gimmick. The D.I.M. told PG that he thought too much. PG replied HURRY UP.

16-Back To Kindergarten In this chapter, John goes upstairs at the research lab with Asa Breed, the manager of the research division. Paragraph 16 is the return to work on this clifsnotes rendering of “Cats Cradle”, and PG is beginning to doubt that it will last for 127 chapters. The book is set in 1959, which is the year PG went to Kindergarten.

17-The Girl Pool John meets Naomi Faust, an employee of the research lab. Mr. V is into the names of characters at this point of his journey. In a few books, the names will be less picturesque. This is something that the early readers of Mr. V did not know. PG thinks of funny names for characters too, but he does not have Mr.V’s knack for story telling. Gnarlene Widget will have to reside in novel limbo, until there is a story she can have a role in.

18- the most valuable commodity on earth There is a trendy word now, commodification. It means to make a commodity out of a person, or of a person’s skills or output. If you look at the word, it could either mean that you make a commodity out of something, or a commode. The pronunciation would be slightly different, but the meaning essentially the same. People who read Chamblee54 regularly…if anyone like that exists…may have already heard this thought. Recycling.

19- no more mudWhen astroturf was first introduced, there was a story floating around about a halfback who drowned in mud during a game. This was supposed to make people go out and buy astroturf for their teams to play on, never mind that 300 pound lineman would instead be knocking that halfback onto concrete, with a foam rubber pad on top of it. When PG was pretending to be a cameraman at the Georgia dome, he took a couple of naps on astroturf, which is surprisingly comfortable to lay down on. It has to be better than taking a nap on mud.

20- ice nine Asa Breed tells John about Ice Nine, an invention of Felix Hoenikker. This is one of the crucial elements of the story, this ice nine. It is a crystal that will induce water to freeze, thus eliminating the existence of mud.Or rather, transforming mud into mud ice, which is still not a good surface for a nap. This lecture was interrupted by the girls pool breaking into the office to sing “oh little town of bethlehem” The visit to Ilium takes place during the xmas season. These days, Bethlehem is near Israel, and is home to Palestinians. It is close enough to Israel to have a huge concrete wall nearby, and someone spray painted “Bethlehem Ghetto” on the side of that wall.

21- the marines march on So the marines are wallowing in the mud, and one very smart marine pulls a capsule of ice nine from his shirt pocket, and turns the mud into ice. The tanks roll on, the marines march to glory, and everything is cool. The only problem is, the war of 2011 is in a dry country. Science fiction does not always plan for such realities. Also, if human beings are mostly water, wouldn’t they freeze as well? A Popsicle marine cannot kill too many people.

22- member of the yellow press Asa Breed continues to lecture John about ice nine, Felix Hoenikker, mud, and pure research. It seems that pure research, the discovery of knowledge for the sake of knowledge, was the goal at this research facility. This is an archaic vision, if indeed it ever existed. Today, the scientist is intended to turn a profit, or secure another research grant from Uncle Sugar. John was supposed to feel like a philistine after the tongue lashing by Asa Breed, but instead wondered what Sandra was going to be doing when he got back to the hotel.
At some point in his career, Kurt Vonnegut was a flack writer for General Electric. This was based in Schenectady NY. The reader can be excused if he thinks there is a connection between this company and GE, and Ilium and Schenectady. Ilium is easier to spell, and sounds like valium . Valium was an improved version of librium, and was introduced to the market in 1963, the year this book was copyrighted. Whether of not there is a connection between valium and Ilium is a good question.

23- the las batch of brownies In this chapter, we establish the date of the story as 1959. We also learn that ice nine really exists, and that all three of Dr. Hoenikkers children have a sample. Those who say the fifties were the good old days, a simpler, innocent era, don’t know what they are saying.

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  1. Cat Furniture Part Three « Chamblee54 said, on January 31, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    […] is a rendering of Cat’s Cradle. Parts one and two are previously published. Pictures are from The Library of Congress . The picture of the […]

  2. Cat Furniture Part Four « Chamblee54 said, on February 7, 2011 at 2:51 am

    […] link, PG said “tmi”. The following is a rendering of Cat’s Cradle. Parts one, two,and three are previously published. 42-bicycles for Afghanistan This is the chapter title that […]

  3. Cat Furniture Part Five « Chamblee54 said, on February 13, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    […] is a rendering of Cat’s Cradle. Parts one, two, three, and four are previously published. Pictures of C.S.A. soldiers are from The Library of […]

  4. Cat Furniture Part Six « Chamblee54 said, on February 18, 2011 at 10:04 am

    […] is a rendering of Cat’s Cradle. Parts one, two, three, four, and five are previously published. 76 Julian Castle agrees with Newt that […]

  5. Cat Furniture Part Seven « Chamblee54 said, on February 23, 2011 at 8:23 am

    […] is a rendering of Cat’s Cradle. Parts one, two, three, four, five , and six are previously published. Pictures are from ” The Special […]

  6. […] is a rendering of Cat’s Cradle. Parts one, two, three, four, five , six, and seven are previously published.Pictures are from The Library of […]

  7. […] is a rendering of Cat’s Cradle. Parts one, two, three, four, five , six, seven, and eight are previously published. Pictures are from The […]

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