Jan 29, 2014

Wildcard Wednesday
Weather or Not . . .

Before I get started I just want to point out to all those grammar Nazis out there that yes, I know that technically I spelled "whether" wrong. However, it was deliberate because my topic for today does have to do with the crazy ass weather we've been having lately. So at ease people!

In 1941 Astounding Science Fiction magazine published a story by Isaac Asimov called Nightfall. According to Asimov, the story came about when he was discussing with John W. Campbell a quotation from Ralph Waldo Emerson:

If the stars should appear one night in a thousand years, how would men believe and adore; and preserve for many generations the remembrance of the city of God which had been shown!

Campbell's opinion was: "I think men would go mad." Asimov's response was the story Nightfall, which is set on a world surrounded by six suns, so that the people have never known night, and what happens when night falls, as it does once every 2049 years.

Now the reason I'm telling you this is because I was whining complaining talking to the hubby the other night about the incessant wind we were having and I said something along the line of: "You know, we've been having so many continuous wind storms the past couple of years that I can see a time coming when we won't know anything other than it being windy out. "

Living on the edge of Lake Ontario, it's pretty much a given that we usually have at least a light breeze coming in off the lake. But for the last year or so we've been experiencing some incredible wind storms. It used to be that we'd get a severe wind during the day, but then come sunset the wind would die down. But these winds go on for days at times.

So then I started thinking about how future generations could actually believe that having it be windy was the natural state of the weather, and what would happen if the wind ever stopped. Which is what got me thinking about Nightfall.

Could make for an interesting story, eh?

Anyway, if you're curious, I found two on-line versions of Nightfall for you. There's text version HERE or a PDF version HERE.

I hope you take the time to read it, it's an excellent story by one of the great masters of science fiction.

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