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Date: Fri, 17 Jan 2003 22:31:35 -0800
From: Michael Andre-Driussi 
Subject: (urth) DOORS: time flow datapoints

Roy wrote:
>The numbers are inconsistent. When Green came back to our world it was April
>15, 1989. (Based on the date 6/6/88 in the file on North that Green found,
>p-128. It was January in the Otherworld when Green left. After Yule.) April
>16, he was put in the booby hatch. He got out during his second summer there
>(207-08). Then three Christmases went by after he went back to work. (210)
>The next February he was transferred to the uptown store. Sometime after
>Daylight Savings Time stopped, but before Christmas of that year (November,
>1993?), he rediscovered Tina and went through a "door" in the arcade and was
>collared by the woman from the haberdashery. She had been holding the pants
>for "four months". (236) That would make it still May, 1989 in the
>Otherworld. Four months passed in the Otherworld, about 55 months in our
>world for Green.

Right, I've been puzzling over that "3 Christmases" thing.  At first I
thought it was less than one year (since Green is extra loopy at that stage
and "Christmas" as he is describing it is more a feeling than a calendar
date), but then his later comments about being middle aged make it seem
almost as if 10 years have gone by, but then I thought it was 3 years
exactly.  Then he is transfered and spends most of  the year at the new
job, so it is up to five years (around 4.5, as you say).

Then when I took the "four months" of O-time and tried to reverse engineer
it, it looks like this:

4 (months) * 28 (days) * 8.25 (O-time multiple) = 924 days = 2.52 years

Another datapoint is Laura Nomos (nomos means "a lawed one," i.e., a
lawyer!) and her fur coat in storage for 26 months (169).  This suggests
790 (days) / 8.25 (O-time multiple) = 96 days (3 months).  (I don't know,
but wouldn't storage be usually for longer than that?  Maybe not: maybe
storage is only for Summer?)

Anyway, that's as far as I've gotten.

If the O-time multiple is constant, then the calendar years could never be
synchronized: the North file year of 1988 could never be seen by a guy who
just came from Earth 1989 (unless, hmmm, it was a very old file).

It would be interesting if the O-time multiple ebbs and flows.

OTOH, here is a disturbing thought which you will probably dispell: what if
there are more than just two worlds?  I only bring it up because Green, at
that 5-street intersection, seems to see five different corridors and then
to experience different versions of the Otherworld, just as different
versions of "Earth" seem to crop up.

To whit: when Green walks past the doll hospital again and sees that there
is already a new doll in Tina's bed (10) -- it looks something like a
dimension splice has happened.  That whole business of the doctor saying
"Mr...?" (4), when we are later told this was his seventh visit (192)
(which might resolve if in one Earth that was his first visit, as it seemed
in the context of page 4, and in another Earth that was his seventh visit);
and the photo of Dr. Nilson and a Lora Masterman who is not the Lora
Masterman he later meets.

Then there's North's "C-One" term for "Nixon world."  This is clearly
messed up on the surface, since "C" is the door to the wing that Green is
in (suggesting that North is just insane and making things up from
immediate input).  But the inclusion of a number (and the reality that
there is dimension-crossing going on) makes it seem like there is a
sequence of more than just two worlds (i.e., C-1 to C-5).

Furthermore, it is pretty well established that there are personal analogs
("panalogs"?) running around: a person Green meets in Otherworld has a twin
on Earth, often in the same situation (I'm thinking of the mental hospital
patient twins in both worlds: the bush message system guy is the chess
player (207)); Fanny is like Ella (181, 182).  North has five names (128);
Fanny has three, or four if we count "Fanny" -- could each be a different
panalog rather than just a simple alias applied to the same, single
individual?  That is, does North have all these names because his panalogs
have always come crashing into this particular dimension of the five?

(I kept watching for Fanny's sixth finger to show up or be hidden.  I
didn't see either -- did you?)

Part of the fun of TAD is the Philip K. Dick-style warping of reality and
madness.  On one reading, Dr. N is involved in a conspiracy to mess with
Green's mind ("the madman is right: paranoia validated!") with forged
photos, false memory creation ("you've been here seven times before" "huh,
I only remember the last time").  On another reading, it all makes sense in
a Wonderland sort of way.  But what I'm talking about is a more sfnal way,

(I like the way that the chess set at the Earth hospital is missing the
white queen and two black pawns (206): a nice way of showing the Graves



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