And the Future Boston series concludes with a look at its core work.
Raw Feed (1995): Future Boston: The History of a City 1990-2100, ed. David Alexander Smith, 1994.
“’Boston Will Sink Claims MIT Prof’”, David Alexander Smith — Fake Time article from 1923 predicting Boston, built on a filled in caldera, will sink.
“Seeing the Edge”, David Alexander Smith — Basically a mainstream story with a bit of foreshadowing about Boston sinking. The “edge” of the title refers to two things: the edge of the area sinking and the edge of impoverishment as protagonist Jerry runs out of money while caring for his absent landlady’s kid. (It’s hinted she was a prostitute that was murdered.) It’s not only an ode to a city that will die but the story of Jerry drawing closer to child Travis and accepting responsibility for him and entering a new life, crossing an “edge between what he had thought he wanted to be and what he was.” Kind of a nice, touching mainstream story.
“Nomads”, Alexander Jablokov — A subtle mainstream story by Jablokov. I liked the crazy nomad character Rum, a self-proclaimed “nomad” and urban, homeless bum who looks on his lot not as privation but the price of freedom, a point worth considering. His apocalyptic ramblings of a coming urban and social collapse foreshadows Boston’s sinking and make him a sort of barbarian heralding, if not hastening, the collapse of civilization. I suppose the point is that protagonist Caius Fitzpatrick learns not to see permanency in life – be it in relationships or structures. Both are subject to complex failures. Continue reading