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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 726

Future Fries With That

  1. In Ronald Linson’s “Schoolgirl Commando”:

    1. In your experience, does the poem depict a physical reality or a state of mind? Or both?
    2. What film from the 1950’s does the poem allude to?
  2. In Mike Acker’s Midnight Thief”:

    1. What is the “thief” stealing?
    2. What does the conclusion mean: “It begins to feel more like a beginning / where most things always seem to end”?
    Proceed to Special Challenge 726...
  3. In Gary Clifton’s The Dead Bin:

    1. In “All in a Day’s Work,” why is McCoy wearing a gorilla costume?
    2. In “Kickin’ Back,” how does McCoy’s athletic career compare to those of the other policemen mentioned to date? Why is Janet a single mother?
    3. In “A Moment of Terror,” McCoy raises the question of murder. Is he right to do so? McCoy’s strong feelings about Internal Affairs notwithstanding, should the incident be investigated?
  4. In Shawn Jacobson’s “On Memory Lanes”:

    1. In this alternate history, what became of the native peoples in the “Spirit Lands,” namely the territory colonized by the aliens?
    2. How do the attitudes and social status of the “newcomers” among the Spirit People differ from those of the original colonists?
    3. What is the significance of the High Council’s considerations? What role did Uncle Carl play in the proceedings?
    4. Style mechanics: The words “Mom” and “Dad” are frequently used. When are they capitalized and when are they not? Why?
  5. In Roy Dorman’s “The Lunch Lady”:

    1. Why does Kristen pass Danny a note warning him away from the “cafeteria”? What difference does it make? In light of the ending, is it as easy to make friends in “the land of the lost” as in reality?
    2. What causes Danny to discover that the cafeteria is really a storeroom? What is the function of Cassie in the story?
    3. What is the function of Loretta? That is, what would be the effect of removing the character from the story?
    4. Why does Lester attack Danny and knock him out?
    5. The story is a fantasy based on the premise of making a state of mind a physical reality. What might Kristen’s role become in a realistic mode?
    6. What does the story seem to say about children’s need of a home? Is Danny typical or a special case?

Responses welcome!

date Copyright August 14, 2017 by Bewildering Stories
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