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Date: Tue, 29 Oct 2002 22:20:59 -0800
From: Michael Andre-Driussi 
Subject: (urth) PEACE: visiting the doctors

William Ansley wrote:
>The Orb paperback edition also reads "underweight." If this version
>is correct, then Weer is always skinny, which would seem to throw at
>least a small monkey wrench into your
>time-splice-at-the-doctors-office theory. That is, if we have a
>"thin, prosperous" Weer rather than a "fat, prosperous" Weer, then
>there is less evidence that we have jumped from the Weer of one time
>to the Weer of another. At the very least, we have lost a convenient

Thank both editions that we still have "Sherry, who is sixteen now"!  And
all those weird antics with nurse repeatedly coming into the examining room
and telling Weer to take his clothes off.

Okay, here are some notes, paragraph by paragraph (at first, but skipping
more as it goes and the chunks become bigger):

[AD 2274] The elm tree...
          This morning...
          When I... (a memory of 1927 that remains a memory)
          My little fire...
          Sometimes I walk...
          I consult...
[1973]    I stand... (president)
[1953]    ...Sherry, who is sixteen now...
          Sherry turns...
          I go to...
          You are thin...
          Yes, you...
          Strip to...
          I undress...
[1963]    ...I have stopped carrying it (the knife: new president)
[2274]    I stand, holding (in the fireplace room)
[1963]    It is quite...
          Sit down, for...
          Mr. Weer--
          There's not a...
          But I can't...
          I dress again (splice w/ nurse)
          I want to...
[1953]    Mr. Weer!
[1963]    Doctor, for a stroke...
          You promised me... (second paragraph of section 3)
[1919]    Yes, Mrs. Weer? (Dr. Black, first and last time, end of section 3)
[1963]    And now this... (first line section 4)
          Your reactions to... (begin section 5)

Another bit, not directly doctor face-to-face, but about the timeframe:
"[the island], at about the time I imagined myself visiting Dr. Van Ness,
to harbor a hermit called Crazy Pete" seems to peg the "I asked for help
with my future stroke" episode to circa 1963.

I have a creeping sense that Dr. Van Ness did not see Weer after Weer's
first, non-fatal stroke -- that Dr. V was himself dead or retired by that
year of 1973 -- and Weer's stroke doctor is some new guy he doesn't know
and can't remember his name (and Weer's memory is getting shakey enough at
that point that he isn't tracking who has died, or maybe he never knew that
Dr. V died or retired).  For Weer's second stroke he wants a trusted doctor
to talk to, hence his attempts to talk to Dr. V.

I also wonder at this detail: one of the last things Dr. V says is "Could
you come back this afternoon," but the whole trippy doctor's office thread
started very specifically at 1:30 pm (first few pages of the book).  It was
already afternoon when they started.  If the doctor was in the same
timeframe, he would probably say "later this afternoon" or "this evening,"
but as it stands it seems as though Dr. V's interview with Weer has
happened in the morning hours.

Since I'm not advocating time travel, I cannot help but wonder if Weer's
attempt to warn Dr. Black, which was received as if he was Cassandra,
didn't in fact get back to Bobby, who received it as some kind of weird
threat . . . which prompted the fight on the stairs.  (Standard time travel

(And the doctor's office is in Blaine's old bank building, right?  Hmmm, I
wonder if there's an angle there.)



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