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Down in the meadow by the stream, the sheep were exploding again.
'Baaaaahhhhhh!' said Colin
'KERBOOOOOOOOM!' replied Kevin, from the spot three feet away where he had been busily munching grass. Short seconds later Kevin was three thousand feet away - straight up, and still accelerating.
“What's your name,' Coraline asked the cat. 'Look, I'm Coraline. Okay?'
'Cats don't have names,' it said.
'No?' said Coraline.
'No,' said the cat. 'Now you people have names. That's because you don't know who you are. We know who we are, so we don't need names.”
“The cat wrinkled its nose and managed to look unimpressed. "Calling cats," it confided, "tends to be a rather overrated activity. Might as well call a whirlwind.”
Is everything normal now?
Well he hasn't got religious mania, and he isn't running around in a circle spouting Gilbert and Sullivan, so I suppose he's normal.
The sky spun again as Marco turned the ship so that 'down' was where long tradition had always put it, in the region of the feet.
"I perceive a possibility of an immediate chronological sequence of events which includes a violence," said Three. He stepped back, "I express preference for a chronological sequence of events which precludes a violence."
I was raised thinking that moral and ethical standards are universals that apply equally to everyone. And these values aren't easily compatible with the kind of religion that posits a Creator. To my way of thinking, an omnipotent being who sets up a universe in which thinking beings proliferate, grow old, and die (usually in agony, alone, and in fear) is a cosmic sadist.
"Is that you?" said a female voice. It wasn't exactly an unpleasant one, but it had a sharp penetrating quality. It seemed to be saying that if you weren't you, then it was your fault. Johnny recognized it instantly. It was the voice of someone who dialled the wrong numbers and then complained that the phone was answered by people she didn't want to speak to.
"You're not allowed to call them dinosaurs anymore." said Yo-less. "It's speciesist. You have to call them pre-petroleum persons."
Wobbler had written an actual computer game like this once. It was called "Journey to Alpha Centauri". It was a screen with some dots on it. Because, he said, it happened in real time, which no-one had ever heard of until computers. He'd seen on TV that it took three thousand years to get to Alpha Centauri. He had written it so that if anyone kept their computer on for three thousand years, they'd be rewarded by a little dot appearing in the middle of the screen, and then a message saying, "Welcome to Alpha Centauri. Now go home."
"I saw a film where there was an alien crawling around inside a spaceship's air ducts and it could come out wherever it liked," said Johnny reproachfully. "Doubtless it had a map," said the Captain.
"Are you a physicist?" "Me? I don't know anything about science!" "Marvellous! Ideal qualification!"
“She had heard it said that, before you could understand anybody, you needed to walk a mile in their shoes, which did not make a whole lot of sense, because probably AFTER you had walked a mile in their shoes, you would understand that they were chasing you and accusing you of the theft of a pair of shoes--although, of course, you could probably outrun them, owing to their lack of footwear.”
Mrs. Earwig (pronounced Ar-wige, at least by Mrs. Earwig) believed in shiny wands, and magical amulets and mystic runes and the power of the stars, while Granny Weatherwax in cups of tea, dry biscuits, washing every morning in cold water and, well...mostly she believed in Granny Weatherwax.
"I know it's not thematically in tune with my new job and all, but I find it effective. Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day", I said. "But set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life. Tao of Pratchett. I live by it."
“No it's not!" said Constable Visit. "Atheism is a denial of a god."
"Therefore It Is A Religious Position," said Dorfl. "Indeed, A True Atheist Thinks Of The Gods Constantly, Albeit In Terms of Denial. Therefore, Atheism Is A Form Of Belief. If The Atheist Truly Did Not Believe, He Or She Would Not Bother To Deny.”
“Commander, I always used to consider that you had a definite anti-authoritarian streak in you.”
“It seems that youhave managed to retain this even though you are authority.”
“That’s practically zen.”
And, while it was regarded as pretty good evidence of criminality to be living in a slum, for some reason owning a whole street of them merely got you invited to the very best social occasions.