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August 27, 2007


Today's theme is...

The end of the world.

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Jim: From A Pale Ship

The pilot of Jack’s mining scout ship was a dark-eyed, narrow faced man appropriately nicknamed Weasel. “Know anything about vector calculus?” Weasel asked during their first shift.

“Not really,” Jack replied. “Why?”

“Watch this.” Weasel carefully pushed a twenty-meter asteroid with the nose of the ship. The rock’s trajectory shifted slightly.


“About a hundred years from now, astronomers will notice three hundred or so of these rocks are on a collision course with Earth. There’ll be too many to stop them all.”

Jack gasped.

“Think of it as weaning ourselves from Earth’s malevolent teat. Mankind’s future is out here.”

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Jeff R.: Here Be Dragons

It's difficult to reach, nowadays. It's not that people didn't know the shape of the world: the Greek knew, as did the Sumerians, even if they didn't spread it about.

No, the proliferation of maps is the problem, making it difficult to Sail beyond the edge of all of them. Also, that any sailor seasoned enough to know how to get there knows enough to avoid it.

Still, I have a nearly unbounded trust in your abilities, my young friend. This flask contains the Genius Loci of one of the Florida Keys. Toss it over the edge, and await payment.

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