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From: "James Wynn" 
Subject: (urth) RE: Why is a chem needed...
Date: Tue, 3 Sep 2002 12:02:50 -0500

I hope not to come off as strident in this posting, but that's probably not
possible :

Several posts have argued that "it is not necessary for Hyacinth to be a
transsexual chem." This is a response to that, especially to Mr. Friedman
who has so very articulately made the argument recently. There are several
textual requirements, some of which I've only firmed up since these postings

1) Hy's name suggests she's a chem; also, why is it "lie" that Hy
overpowered the pilot? (despite Mr. Friedman's suggestion that Horn "got it

2) Load's of hints that's she's male including her name (ala Hyacinthus) and
Silk's none to subtle association with Apollo

3) Silk's conversation with Horn after Hy overpowers the pilot, suggests
she's a male chem. Otherwise, what does the plight of male chems have to do
with why Silk tried to kill himself? Why is the relationship between Hy and
Hammerstone so unique? Why do THEY among all others get along as equals?
Silk asserts the answer is in this conversation. Can anybody else tie the
pieces together in to one single explanation?

Thematic threads woven into the story by Wolfe (not by me) suggest something
"not right" with Hyacinth. What secret Hy and Chenille hiding? Mr. Friedman
has pointed out that Chenille is a sexually ambivalent name - Wolfe goes out
of his way to define the name with it's MALE definition rather than the
FEMALE one. She's the lover of Auk who is thematically linked to Silk (as a
kind of "soul doppelganger") in so many ways it will take four essays to
describe them. It is quite reasonable to ask how are Silk's and Auk's love
affairs are similar?

Mr. Friedman seems to agree with me on the import of every clue I name but
does not see a need for a larger conclusion - either regarding Hy or the
woven themes I've delineated. IMO we agree that the recipe is to mix flour,
eggs, milk, and sugar, and bake it. But Mr. Friedman wants to call it "Baked
Flour, Eggs, Milk, and Sugar" while I want to call it "Cake."

Here's the situation as I see it. There are parts of Hyacinth scattered
around throughout the Long Sun books. Some are female, some are bio, some
are male, and some are chem. How does one put all these pieces together?
Some parts must be "real" and others ornamental? Since Hy is *ostensibly* a
female bio, it seems likely that the chem and male parts are non-ornamental.

I would looove to opt for a simpler theory in which Hy is a bio woman with
male chem parts inside. It would be simpler. But there's no evidence of it
in the text.

When I originally published the Hyacinth citation in "Thelx's Mirrors", I
had only a vague certainty that she had to be chem and a sense that the
clues pointed to her being Male. I have a more solid grasp on the
affirmative clues now (albeit no real explanation for the negative evidences
(which I of course consider to be "lies"). I'll update the Hyacinth citation
in the near future to give a more detailed, less disjointed explanation of
the clues that point affirmatively to Hy being a male chem.

-- Crush


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