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From: Alex David Groce <Alex_Groce@gs246.sp.cs.cmu.edu>
Subject: Re: (urth) re: PEACE EZ Timeline
Date: Fri, 27 Oct 2000 14:28:16 

>   "There's not a man in my plant I'd talk to the way you talk to every
> patient you've got."
>   "But I can't fire my patients, Mr. Weer."
> The clear implication is that Weer is president at this point; at any
> rate, he's not the poor 40-year-old.  Then a couple pages later we have
> the dialogue putting Weer's age as in the early 40s.  I don't know if we
> can push Weer's presidency back that far; if not, another splice.
> While looking this up, I noticed another sentence: "There is (as a
> matter of fact) a whole pile of _Lifes_ before me, and I play the old
> game of trying to arrange them chronologically without looking at the
> dates, and lose." (3)  If that isn't Wolfe going nyah-nyah-nyah to his
> readers, I don't know what is.  (And I won't even go into the
> implications of reincarnation in the first half of the sentence!)

These two quotes strengthen Dan'l's hypothesis about the Doctors being
guides in the afterlife as well.  A pile of lives in the waiting room,
indeed.  Hmmm...  Which brings in a point: perhaps there's something
less solipsistic about this than we think.  At various times it seems
that Den's afterlife and old age are appearing as anachronisms in his
memories of earlier times, in his interactions with other characters.
What if, since our time-frame implies that ALL of the residents of
Cassionville are long dead, these others are not simply recreations of
the past, or spirits called from the vasty deep, but others
experiencing the same kind of afterlife as Den?  I think WEER sees
them to some extent as simply memories, ghosts, or shadows, but what
if that is a reflection of his isolation rather than the actual state
of things?  This fits nicely with the lich's implication that Den and
Gold are the spirits; perhaps to Miss Birkhead, Den is simply a
character in her TAT-guided "purgatory."  This sharing of stories
makes more sense thematically than to have the characters simply be
dredged up by Den's dead soul--even Den states openly that this is not
his story.  He calls Julian Smart, of all people, the central

"And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:32
Alex David Groce (agroce+@cs.cmu.edu)
Ph.D. Student, Carnegie Mellon University - Computer Science Department
8112 Wean Hall (412)-268-3066

*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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