[LMB] actuality

pouncer at aol.com pouncer at aol.com
Sat Jun 30 17:24:56 BST 2018

Joel Polowin responds to me: 

JP>I am having trouble parsing this message as anything but an assertion
>that poly is to monogamy as a lightflyer is to a current automobile.

That's so. That's my claim.  Hailing frequencies open!

JP>And I really don't think that's the case.  A lightflyer is so much
>better than a current automobile that if they were equally available,
>I can't imagine that anyone would use an automobile ...

AND,  we seem to be having difficulties with the universal translator.

I intended to comment on previous, on list, discussion of all the 
various ways real and fictional persons form polyamorous, polygynous,
polygamous, and poly-whatever-might-be-ous relationships.  Triangles
and v-shaped vertexs and quadrilaterals and radial-star/hub-and-spoke -
all kinds of configurations of "poly" ness. 

And then, I suggest that the amorphous and theoretical nature of "poly"
then makes for unfair comparison to "monogamous" relationships. "Mono"
opportunities and understandings which incorporate long LONG historical 
and legal and traditional ancillary specifications regarding adultery, 
community property, inheritance, sexual consent, responsibility for 
progeny, divorce, engagement, and likely more than I can think of right now...

And rather than then attempting to imagine, and argue, all the ways
an imaginary SF "poly" thing is "better than" current and actual "mono" 
things, I merely point out that we _are_ discussing an SF-nal construct. 
Like a lightflyer. Which, if we get to design it in our own heads and
wave our hands really fast and do not have to defend ideas against everybody
else's favorite forms of individual or social/communal transportation, 
will of course be better than driving the lemon now parked at the curb. 

As for being judgmental of Aral's disclosed humanity and attendant 
deficiencies:  we might discuss how he abuses his own lightflyer and
as loco parentis to Ivan (at least) passes on his own bad habits.  He
drives / flies when drunk.  He disables the safety features so he can
deliberately drive unsafely.  He takes glee in discomforting his 
passengers. (Ivan, too,  does this to his dates, even though he hates it
when they reciprocate.) Aral takes his civilian vehicle "off road" into
wild territory, perhaps discomforting or endangering the wildlife;
especially when he crashes. Yeah, I disapprove.  Of this particular
facet of a very complex character of whom I on balance and generally
very much approve.  Balancing perceived virtues and vices, and embracing 
or rejecting, or forgiving versus extracting recompense, for a character (in 
life or in fiction) -- how can we not? We, and Cordelia, might wish Aral 
were not quite so "Old Vor" in his observance of the binge drinking 
traditions of his caste.  Approval of Aral generally need not include
approval of binge drinking, or reckless driving, or -- in my judgment
at least -- violation/retraction of fidelity oaths freely given in the groat circle.

More information about the Lois-Bujold mailing list