Friday, February 8, 2013

SciFi or Not? Snowstorm.

I often wonder how sci fi writers come up with some of the things they do, in particular the ones who’s ideas come to fruition. Isaac AsimovAsimov, who was one of the greatest writers of sci fi at one time was a particular example. I always remember his Multivac; a big  AI computer which contained all the information known to man and could be accessed by anyone with hand held devices which everyone had. Read Internet for Multivac and what have you got? Incredible forecasting. He even wrote, in an anthology I read, about items he had written in his early years which had come to pass in his own lifetime. Asimov was a scientist as is Catharine Asaro who also writes sci fi, her Skolean Empire books are excellent reads. Must admit I don’t really understand all the science in her books, but I assume she knows what she’s talking about. Then there Watson on Jeopardyis Peter F. Hamilton who’s stories envisage habitats in space, some of which were asteroids mined for their minerals and then converted for human living. There are already companies investigating the possibilities of mining asteroids. I am still waiting for computers to become Artificial Intelligences. Watson, which they used on Jeopardy last year, is probably the nearest so far. I have written along these lines before, but its a subject I find fascinating.

I used to have friends who figured aliens had been visiting earth every so often over the centuries and that’s why inventions occurred which were really “out of time”. Not sure if the inventor was supposed to be the alien or that he was given the ideas by an alien. Maybe the same could apply to sci fi authors. No, if you are a writer, you wouldn’t necessarily know an idea had been ‘fed’ to you.

At the time of writing, they are forecasting that we in this part of Ontario will get 25 cm of snow in the next 24 hours. It has already started snowing, we won’t know, until the end of the day today whether the forecast is accurate. In fact its supposed to snow most of the day so we might not be going bowling this afternoon.

If I make this soup, which sounds delicious, I will use Chinese Cellophane noodles or something similar. Not an Italian pasta. I found the recipe at

Vietnamese Pork-and-Noodle Soup

Source: Quick from Scratch - Soups and Salads
Vietnames Pork NoodlesServes 4
In many Asian cultures, long noodles symbolize long life. And in the spirit of that tradition, we've left the pasta whole here, to be eaten with chopsticks or even a fork. Of course, if you're feeling reckless, you can go ahead and break the noodles into smaller pieces before cooking them.
1/4 pound linguine
1 1/2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 pork tenderloin (about 3/4 pound), cut into 11/2-by-1/2-by-1/2-inch strips
6 scallions including green tops, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
2 tomatoes, chopped
3 tablespoons Asian fish sauce (nam pla or nuoc mam)*
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups water
1 quart canned low-sodium chicken broth or homemade stock
1/4 pound bean sprouts
2 tablespoons lime juice (from about 1 lime), plus lime wedges for serving
1 cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut crosswise into thin slices
1 cup lightly packed mint, basil, or cilantro leaves, or a combination
*Available at Asian markets and most supermarkets

In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the linguine until just done, about 12 minutes. Drain the pasta. Rinse with cold water and drain thoroughly.
Meanwhile, in another large pot, heat the oil over moderate heat. Add the pork, scallions, and ginger and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, fish sauce, salt, water, and broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the pork is just done, about 10 minutes. Stir the cooked linguine, bean sprouts, and lime juice into the soup. Ladle into bowls, top each serving with some of the cucumber and herbs, and serve with the lime wedges.

Have a great day


  1. They say it's the storm of the century. If you don't have to go out, stay home!

    1. Don't worry we are staying comfy cozy in the apartment looking at the snow coming down. We have at least 6 inches on our wall and a friend who does have to clear snow, says there is at least a foot on the ground.

  2. No aliens, but my clones have some great ideas.

    1. Has it ever occurred to you your clones might be aliens? I wish I could get just one idea for a book. Never have.