|David Ackerman's Durlig?|
The silliest thing was the root "durlig", which is absolutely necesary for Earth based life to survive on Jorune. It is the arrogance of thinking they know what people would think is a nasty tasting food. And very American. Around our world people eat things that cause "yuuuck" response in protected populations who have never known hunger or the diseases/conditions as a result of malnutrition. People eat fried rats, with the hair still on it - and pay for it as fast food - on a stick. I go yuck at that, but if it is wait until you can save up for a "real" meal, or starve, you start acquiring a taste.
Mmmmmmm. Rat like mama use to hawk on street corners.
Human favorite foods are
If there was a on-crop lynch pin to human survival, there would be catastrophe with a crop failure. And, since the Thantierians survived a thousand year siege by living in great fortresses, where did they grown their durlig. Durlig is a giant root plant. Did they have two story tall planters on the roof for sun and water, or expend precious resources on hydroponics and willing sacrifice the lower classes by denying the necessary tubers?
So, I shrugged. One thing I did not agree with in a world that otherwise fascinated and drew me.
Questions of population come to me. How many people were in the original colony, how many survived. How many types of mutations did not breed true or were so mutated that it got in the way of survivability? What is a 'viable' human population.
How big was the "Shyee" - the "Dying Times" after the Human-Shanthic war? What were the surviving populations, where, and how big? Who lost? Why did survivors survive? We know the Thantierian - the longest lived non-Shanthic civilization on the planet - survived by having a "Century of Grace" with working Earth-tec on par with the Colony, and many bits of Earth-tec survived for centuries after. But until the recent discovery of Kelvin cryo-bins, most of the original Earth-tec had become non-functional objects d'art, venerated but not actually able to do anything. (Most - some still function, but for how long?)
Which opened other problems I don't teen aged boys (or girls) are qualified to answer. What is the difference between a half-Boccord, big Human, and a puny Boccord? (A half-Boccord, big Human, and a puny Boccord walk into a shenter...) No human teenager wanted the weight of Boccord breasts on the top of his head?
Interbreeding. Wouldn't there be half-human, half-woffen running around - and maybe running really fast because of angry townfolk with pitchforks and torches. Can Iscin races interbreed? With humans? A family tree with a Boccord grandfather, a crugar grandmother, a Broth grandfather and a blount grandmother?
They had, thankfully, just implied that such interbreeding had already played thru and there were were none of those interbreeds factored into the write up. But if they are sterile to each other, wouldn't that open the door to some bizarre prostitution practices?
Prostitution was hinted at but never openly described. Thankfully.
I am grateful for that omission. Very grateful.