The Musings of an Idle Mind

Things that go 'Bump' in my head

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There's a Word for That
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gary_jordan
bigbananaslug did a review of the new Hobbit movie, calling it bad fanfic. seawasp disagreed. I don't think he liked the movie either, but he has standards for "bad fanfic" that the movie never approached. At one point (referring to Dwarf/Elf love), Sluggy used the word rishathra, which means a "sexual practice outside one's own species but within the intelligent hominoids." More simply, sex with aliens that look sorta human.

I said, in part, "Oh, good grief. I haven't read a Ringworld story in years. I'd forgotten that term for Kirk getting every chick regardless of race or color (green, for example) because Trek never borrowed it. But they did practice it. A lot."

Well, Star Trek TOS ran from '66 to '68, and Ringworld was first published in 1970. Trek couldn't borrow it—it hadn't been invented (as a term) yet. But there have been five series since TOS (including the cartoon, which had Nivenish characters). The term should have been borrowed, stolen or at least imitated by now.
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Actually, I loved the movie and I'm going to post a long review of it today.

Doc Smith was doing that stuff, or at least implying it, long before Trek. Vesta, possibly the world's first Catgirl, was clearly attractive to, and attracted by, our nice human hero Neal "Storm" Cloud in _Masters of the Vortex_. If the species were close enough in general appearance and structure, it was implied that there was no reason they WOULDN'T be attractive to each other.

ETA: And in some ways having a term for it would be bad in a Trek setting; it could easily be used in the same way "miscegenation" used to be.

Edited at 2013-12-19 11:48 am (UTC)

I suppose the term doesn't fit anyway. Most of the races on Ringworld were not interfertile, and it was sometimes practiced as a sort of birth control. In the Trek universe(s), there were mixed individuals all over the place. Spock (half human), Saavik (half Romulan), wussername that had Worf's son, only half Klingon, Deanna Troi (half Betazoid) and so on.

In pedantic mode, doesn't the term rishathra first turn up in Ringworld Engineers, the never-published sequel to the Hugo-winning book Ringworld?

(In my world, Niven wrote it just as the Brain-eater was starting to get to him. He had just enough sense not to submit it for publication, but continued to write for his own amusement. When he went catatonic, someone leaked it and a putative third book to the public.)

Was that the same Brain-eater that chewed on Heinlein?

Dammit, what is the name of that short story? The one where the SF writer discovered a beast that was chowing down on the good science fiction that was submitted to the editor? I think it was in one of the old "Analog" collections. He killed it: something like "I went and got the [NAME OF SOME GUN HERE] that I keep for home defense, and defended the living bejasus out of the thing."

Never heard of it. Was the gun maybe a Schmitz und Waldrop?

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