Escape Artists

Escape Pod => Episode Comments => Topic started by: eytanz on June 18, 2017, 03:08:42 PM

Title: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: eytanz on June 18, 2017, 03:08:42 PM
EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi (http://escapepod.org/2017/06/15/ep580-nozizwe-and-almahdi/)

AUTHOR: J. R. Dawson (http://www.jrdawson.org/)
NARRATOR:Eric Luke (http://www.quillhammer.com/)
HOST: Divya Breed (http://www.eff-words.com/)

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She was a princess and he was a prince, and they had been genetically made for each other. The science had been precise down to their anatomical make-up, the blood and the speed in which that blood pulsed through their perfectly symmetrical hearts.
His name was Almahdi. He had been named this because of the way the consonants and vowels hit the shape of her ear. Her name was Nozizwe, because she would indeed be the mother of nations. They would meet at a grand ball on the space station, in the neutral zone between their two new colony kingdoms, in their eighteenth year. So that meant, while other children got to spend their first eighteen years enjoying their robo-dogs and trying to set their parents’ fireproof space suits aflame and going to camp on the moon, the prince and the princess did nothing fun. In fact, their daily activities were about as far from fun as daily activities could get.
“You were made out of love,” Nozizwe’s father, the King, instructed her — age three — from his throne. “Therefore, you must love. Now, what does it mean to love, Nozizwe?”
Nozizwe, sitting in an uncomfortable chair, farted loudly.


(http://escapepod.org/wp-images/podcast-mini4.gif) Listen to this week’s Escape Pod! (http://traffic.libsyn.com/escapepod/EP580_Nozizwe_and_Almahdi.mp3)
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: Katzentatzen on June 29, 2017, 09:23:35 PM
I love examples of defying genetic destiny. But in this case, it is true that a little roleplaying can spice up a relationship!
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: acpracht on July 01, 2017, 04:20:21 AM
That reminds me of the ending of one I assigned to Trendane Sparks... Erm... "Recollection" I think it was. By Nancy Fulda?
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: ProperPunctuation on July 05, 2017, 05:24:40 PM
This story was so engaging - the fact that the two teenagers, burdened with the fate of their world, still seemed like children, or young adults at the very least, made this story hit just a little closer to home. The story that was told felt simultaneously real and fantastical, just like the author no doubt intended
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: Ichneumon on July 11, 2017, 12:57:25 AM
Those colonies need to hire a better psychologist! How could you feel anything for somebody under such pressure and ceremony?!
I think the silly comedic lines, like the part about toilets, were a nice way to put the rest of the story into perspective: don't get too outraged, the story is supposed to be outrageous.
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: acpracht on July 13, 2017, 09:53:24 PM
This story was so engaging - the fact that the two teenagers, burdened with the fate of their world, still seemed like children, or young adults at the very least, made this story hit just a little closer to home. The story that was told felt simultaneously real and fantastical, just like the author no doubt intended

I think my favorite line is when the young toddler-age Nozizwe farts in response to her father's lecture.

My kids would absolutely have done the same (in fact, there's a high probability they already have...)

-Adam Pracht
Producer
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: acpracht on July 13, 2017, 10:01:44 PM
Those colonies need to hire a better psychologist! How could you feel anything for somebody under such pressure and ceremony?!
I think the silly comedic lines, like the part about toilets, were a nice way to put the rest of the story into perspective: don't get too outraged, the story is supposed to be outrageous.

I was much reminded of Hari Seldon in Asimov's "Foundation" series, where psychology has become a branch of mathematics used to predict and shape the future course of humanity across a millennium.

Of course, in Foundation - as here - things don't go as planned (because people are people and their most consistent trait is their inconsistency). And in spite of that, things in both stories turn out fine anyway (because our next most important trait is our ability to adapt.)

-Adam
Producer
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: Ichneumon on July 14, 2017, 02:32:47 PM
Psychohistory could never predict the actions of an individual! Only at the population level are humans statistically predictable!
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: Fenrix on September 30, 2017, 01:30:06 AM
This story was exceptionally sweet. And it paired nicely with a fantasy post-humanism story (http://forum.escapeartists.net/index.php?topic=10177.0).
Title: Re: EP580: Nozizwe and Almahdi
Post by: CryptoMe on December 08, 2017, 06:44:06 PM
I enjoyed this story quite a bit. I liked the way Nozizwe is up for falling in love with Almahdi, but can't because she doesn't believe his feelings are genuine. I liked the way Almahdi found a creative way to show Nozizwe that his feelings *are* genuine and not just crafted by their upbringing. And I liked that Nozizwe is able to see this eventually. And, I loved how the two finally decided to throw over all the pomp and planning and do things their own way. Nicely done.