Friday, May 4, 2012

The Second Bittersweet Mess

Hi, and welcome to another Friday night. The stories tonight aren't quite as action-packed as they were last week, but I do have some good ones for you today. The recently published story I have to offer you is Maggie Clark's "The Bittersweet Here and Now". The story from an anthology is Stephen King's "The End of the Whole Mess", from Wastelands. And this week's classic is pretty awesome. It's "Second Variety" by none other than Philip K. Dick. So get yourselves cozy. You're all in for a treat.

The Bittersweet Here and Now by Maggie Clark -- Daily Science Fiction
In the future, nanobots may be used to alter our moods to keep us in an emotional equilibrium. Maggie Clark, in this story, wonders what it would be like if that would become the norm. What would happen if you chose to quit using the nanobots and let your emotions come naturally? What would everyone around you think? Clark's thought experiment is much like the big word in her title: bittersweet.

The End of the Whole Mess by Stephen King -- Wastelands (anthology edited by John Joseph Adams)
With human civilization coming to an end, the main character of this story tells us with his last remaining moments how his brother caused the chain of events that lead up to this cataclysmic event. And the brother wasn't even trying to hurt anybody. If anything, he was trying to do the opposite.

Second Variety by Philip K. Dick -- Space Science Fiction May 1953
What happens in a future where robots start making other robots that look like humans? What if those robots were used to exterminate the human species? Those are a couple of the questions that popped into my head while reading this story. Robots in this story have become so human-like, that humans can't discern them from other humans until it is too late. Well, this story isn't quite a thriller, but it's darn close. Hope you enjoy it!

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