Weatherman by Caldon Mull

Posted by Mrs Giggles on March 7, 2020 in 1 Oogie, Book Reviews, Genre: Fantasy & Sci-fi

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Weatherman by Caldon Mull
Weatherman by Caldon Mull

Caldon Mull, $1.99
Sci-fi, 2019

Weatherman by Caldon Mull

It has started; from a lonely eddy unto a sweeping tide. It started from a single Homeworld sweltering under extreme climate changes and will lead to different places, under alien stars and under strange skies: The Diaspora.

That’s the opening paragraph. Okay, maybe if I read further, I will understand what the author is yammering about. What’s the next paragraph?

It was early in the first decades of the Twenty-Second Century that whole cities began to enclose their vulnerable population in Arcology structures, protecting them from the chaos and violent weather that swamped whole coastal areas and put paid to the economy of Earth. All the while EarthGov struggled to keep the population of Earth safe on Earth; the more industrious of the Arcology cultures had other plans for themselves.

Hmm. Okay. Let me read on to the next paragraph.

The physical structure of the Arcology culture leaned itself to another type of Enterprise; Travel. In the face of drowning or sinking as an only option, trapped within a ship designed to weather all nature of calamity, humanity became enamored of improving their circumstances in weighting the known and the unknown.

Hold on for a second, I have to look up “Arcology”. Oh, so it’s “architecture” combined with “ecology” – I guess it’s buildings made for… okay, I need another second as I look up this word further. Oh yes, it’s some kind of architecture that will accommodate many, many people without impacting the environment too much. So, this kind of architecture leads to… travel? I guess that’s space travel? Wait, wait, if Arcology has a culture, does this mean they are some kind of race or species? I think I need to read the next paragraph to get a better idea of what the author is telling me here.

The Ecliptic Emigrant Trail became viable as soon as Arcology technology developed sufficiently within a few decades to optimize the ship systems for Space Flight. Soon enough, City Arcology after City Arcology were lifting off the planet Earth and congregating at Earth LaGrange 5, planning their journey and marshaling their resources to travel the Inter-Planetary Gravity Super-highway.

What? Okay, okay, let’s read on.

At the time of this record, ten Earth-flight Fleets have taken to the Ecliptic Trail, and two have taken the longer view to the Seeded Worlds. For the sake of Humanity in the Solar System and the Sol Senate, I have undertaken the task of tracking the experiences of the Human beings in this phase of History that I have classified as ‘The Diaspora’.

What the hell is Arcology? What is this Ecliptic Trail? Seeded Worlds? Why is Humanity given that capital H, same with History? Why is Travel with a capital T?

I make no judgment of these people, I make no claim to vested interests because people are just people. Their tales and experiences are just as valid as any Sol Senator, and add to humanities experience far more reliably than the views that have been passed down through history, based on their views of a privileged few.

I am making lots of judgment so far. I guess what happened is that Earth was experiencing bad weather and the sea rose, so people had to fly off to some place – Arcology? Seeded Worlds? – through some route called the Ecliptic Trail during a time period called The Diaspora. Did I get that right? Okay, next paragraph.

As in any great endeavor such as this, ‘The Diaspora’ has to begin somewhere. I have chosen to start close to home with a place that I am familiar with: The Mars-Fleet push from the chaotic Earth. In both literal and figurative meaning, Mars-Fleet had to both establish themselves on a freeze-dried world and defend themselves from the encroaching GovSec.

Is someone paying the author to introduce at least one ill-explained jargon in every paragraph? Okay. what’s the last sentence in this chapter again?

I hope that these records will be as enlightening to read as they were in compiling.

Oh, f… screw you.

Next chapter. Let’s see.

“The drone feeds are in Esteban, you’re on in 5…” Esteban nodded, switching over his feed to the news team, waiting for his cue.

Drone feeds are inside him? Is this a gay man-machine sex thing? Oh, things are looking up!

“… that was the news and now for the naked weather on Mars, with Esteban Perez…”

Esteban grinned with his ‘special grin’ as the red light on his camera drone flashed 3, 2…

Oh, the sex is being streamed live. This looks fun!

“Thank you, Wasily.” Esteban squared his shoulders and picked up smoothly, his internal green-screen display returned his augmented-reality output, along with the other data-tethers to the Skynet satellites. “The cold-front we started tracking yesterday has intensified in the last twenty-four hours to monsoon conditions, indicating heavy sleet and dust conditions along the shores of the northern sink.” Esteban ticked off his feed items, “Wally Ramperasadh, you’ve got about three hours to batten down the hatches and jack your homestead platform up by a meter, it’s going to be a long three days before it passes you by and make sure all the stock domes are secured. The trick is to get higher than sixty centimeters, where the dust is most concentrated.

Wait… what? I think the words are in English, but for some reason I have no idea what some of the phrases mean.

“The rest of you in MF3-Cartagena, after Wally beats down the leading front, keep posted with his manse-com; track what is happening with Wally and the other farmers on the lowland shore. Remember this, if you like lamb chops then Wally and guys like him need to stay safe. If you haven’t already, subscribe to the MF3-Cartagena local feeds and keep up to date with the news for your area. Do it soon because you’ll probably go off-grid in a day or two.

Huh? If people are going off-grid, how will they receive the local feeds?

“On the planetary map, all seems to be just another ordinary day. It’s dry and warm out there, all the way around the equator and into the tropics. A typical Martian autumn’s day lies in store for us.”

Wait, wait… I’m assuming these people moved from Earth to Mars during the Diaspora, sorry, The Diaspora, and they probably terraformed the planet so that they can herd sheep and experience tropical climate… but why is it an ordinary day when Wally and his guys need to stay safe from whatever that is happening in that lowland shore place?

Esteban concatenated a planetary view in his AR and spun it onto his green-screen.

“Warm fronts around the equator and satellite maintenance above the Hellas lake here in MF1-Cadiz, and in the south polar region are the only change in our twenty-four hour sample and, aside from the monsoon warning, rough weather outside of the domes are in-fit-tes-imal.” Esteban smiled his ‘reassuring smile’, “Here are the projections for temperatures and conditions over Mars for the next rotation and for the next week… This is Esteban Perez with the weather for today and for the next week we’ll have updates routed through our news team with Babs. I have to go into the shop for maintenance, but I’m back live on the Mars Channel Network in a few days.” Esteban smiled his ‘special smile’ again holding it as his private feed announced “3… 2… 1… and cut! That’s a wrap, people.”

IS WALLY GOING TO DROWN? WHO ON EARTH IS WALLY? WHY ARE WE CUTTING OFF FROM SOMETHING URGENT LIKE THAT TO… THIS?

“Who else noticed that cell over the Northern sink was going to get so hard, so quickly.” Esteban grumbled as he cut his feeds and stomped off his presenter platform. “I thought we had the prediction algorithms down pat. While it’s not very deep in the North sink what little water there is, is all going to dump on those homesteads.” He growled over at the news platform, Wasily and Babs rolled their eyes in the ‘not-this-again’ and unclipped their coms.

Is Wally’s place going to sink? But if Wally lives in the lowland shore, and he and his guys are all going to get very wet, and we need them safe because otherwise we’d all have no lamb chops to eat, why is this Esteban fellow and his friends all acting like it’s no big deal?

Lin-ho, the production boss looked over and shook her head “Esteban, it’s just the weather… it’s not like it’s a precise science or anything. Go and put some clothes on, go out and have a beer or something.”

Wait, he’s naked?

Sure, I’ll do that.” Esteban grumbled while he headed for his change room, “… just the fucking weather! Right!”

“Chill a bit, the Senatorial parliament feed is back on for the rest of the day, and then Pele Starmind has the rest of the block booked up with his ‘Titania – the new Siberia?’ documentary. She shrugged, “You’ve got a whole week before you’re on again. Good show… It was a great idea feeding from the homestead’s house- mind for the triangulation. We certainly will keep using that, bringing a human face to our viewers.”

“Thanks, Boss.” Esteban nodded to her as he left the set. “I’m going to get dressed.”

This is where the big scene ends.

It’s the same with the rest of this thing. The author drops things obfuscated by jargon – maybe the readers of this thing are supposed to be mind-reading aliens, I don’t know – and the story has ADHD, hopping from one thing to another without clearing up anything. I have better things to do than to waste time on a story written by an author who doesn’t seem to respect my time, so this one can go choke on its Diaspora.

Oh, and don’t get me started on all that annoying capitalization of words like Travel, Humanity, Whatever. Is this thing even edited by someone sober?

Never mind, I’ll just show myself out.