Monday, 27 March 2017

Eating And Killing (Or Vice Versa)

SM Stirling, A Meeting At Corvallis (New York, 2007), Chapter Five, p. 115ff.

In the Bearkillers' embassy at Corvallis:

smoked salmon cooked in cream and dill;
crab stir-fried with scallions and ginger;
blue cheese with crackers;

The talk over the food is the familiar kind of discussion about the balance of forces and an imminent war - also how to flush out bandits. Casual killing of bandits seems a shame after the population has been reduced so drastically. However, the settled communities are thriving and reproducing. As the meal shows, there is plenty of wealth for bandits to steal. The crabs are brought inland by rail in saltwater tanks with the wheels working fans to circulate the water. Ingenious. And, of course, the sea is full of crabs. Former vegetarians eat meat - but not all have descended into cannibalism.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Unfortunately, banditry has ALWAYS accompanied the collapse or fall of every civilization mankind has known, so it's no surprise bandit spread after the Change. And bandits HAVE to be put down if ordinary people are going to be able to get on with their lives.

I remember this meeting of the Bearkiller leaders at Corvallis. One detail that stuck in my mind was how INTERNAL heating was not as effective as it was before the Change. Even given the best efforts, temperatures tended to be rather cool in the colder parts of the year, mid sixties Fahrenheit. So jackets and sweaters would be worn.