Post by email@example.com
My first exposure to Asimov's work was the classic short story "The Fun
They Had," which we had to read in school and analyze (with a partner) when
we were 8.
Trouble is, even if I had read the first paragraph properly...
Margie even wrote about it that night in her diary. On the page headed May
17, 2157, she wrote, "Today, Tommy found a real book!"
...I STILL wouldn't have been able to grasp the idea of a story that takes
place in the future; chances are I had never heard of such a thing, at the time!
Which kind of hurt my understanding of the assignment!
Not to mention that since the 1990s or so, it's become impossible to read
the story in the same way. (Not that most parents would really want their
kids home schooled in that particular manner; neither of Margie's parents
is her "teacher," after all.)
They turned the pages, which were yellow and crinkly, and it was awfully funny
to read words that stood still instead of moving the way they were supposed
to--on a screen, you know. And then, when they turned back to the page before,
it had the same words on it that it had had when they read it the first time.
"Gee," said Tommy, "what a waste. When you're through with the book, you just
throw it away, I guess. Our television screen must have had a million books
on it and it's good for plenty more. I wouldn't throw IT away."
In other words, kids of the future aren't even expected - or allowed - to
read any page or book more than once! (Though it's not clear whether this
has more to do with kids' impatience or parents' impatience.)
For better or worse, Matt Drudge offers insight into the behavior of a
large percentage of people. Drudge watches a given silver screen movie
only once. OTOH, anecdotal evidence suggests that many SF fans, myself
included, watch the same movie more than once.
The story's home school element seems a shade too Libertarian for
Asimov. Presumably he sees his way to include a smidgen of freedom as
long as it remains under centralized control via an authorized repairman.
Two things about your story in regards to Asimov's story are
remarkable. First, that your school exposed you to Asimov at the young
age of eight. And second, that you remember your struggle to comprehend
the storied future.
Korzybski refers to the latter process as "time-binding." At the
beginning of their careers both Heinlein and Van Vogt followed
Korzybski's lead in time-binding.
Don.......My cat's )\._.,--....,'``.
telltale tall tail /, _.. \ _\ (`._ ,.
tells tall tales.. `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'