Thief of Time Discussion *Spoilers*

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Postby Jan Van Quirm » Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:14 pm

poohcarrot wrote:
Jan Van Quirm wrote:The life-timer is a 'tracking' type device for Lu -Tse only, as he's a mortal depite being able to postpone his own death.

Now - something that's been niggling at me - Wen's servant (guess what - forgotten his name already :roll: ). Does he remind anyone else of Lu Tse? :twisted:


First paragraph; He can postpone his own death even longer now because of the decapitation trick. When he dies, he will be sent back in time to when he had his head chopped off, so won't make the same mistake again, so not die.

Second paragraph; No, because he's stupid.

You think so? Woot! *rolls up sleeves* :lol:

Is he stupid? Weren't we all stupid when we were much, much younger and before we knew better? It was more the attitude I meant. Parts of it just seemed to fit in with all the sending up that Lu-Tse does about just being a sweeper and never doing the mainstream History Monk things in a properly inscrutable and reverent fashion. :P
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Postby poohcarrot » Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:21 pm

Jan Van Quirm wrote:Is he stupid? Weren't we all stupid when we were much, much younger and before we knew better?


Some of us matured. :twisted:

(Check my signature, baby!)

PS But not me because I'm still stupid! :P
"Disliking Carrot would be like kicking a puppy."
"You kicked a puppy," Lobsang said accusingly.
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Postby Dotsie » Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:26 pm

CrysaniaMajere wrote:p.s.if i make mistakes with the language, please tell me. i learned english with american movies and english books expecially TP's


Crysania, I know you're asking because you're trying to improve your english, but the worst people to ask would be the English. So afraid are we of causing offence (knowing that we don't speak any other languages), that all we say is "your english is wonderful!" (which it is). Pooh will be your saviour here :wink:
What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!
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Postby poohcarrot » Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:29 pm

I think the person who really saved the world was the female version of Time - Lobsang/Jeremy's mum. As she could see past, present and future, she knew the auditors would stop time. She made sure that her children were born at the right time and place, and be old enough to be involved and save the world by uniting their bodies. She did it all so she could retire with Wen and live in a little "cottage". 8)
"Disliking Carrot would be like kicking a puppy."
"You kicked a puppy," Lobsang said accusingly.
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Postby Jan Van Quirm » Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:34 pm

What a fraud you are! Just a big old romantic softie :twisted:
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Postby kakaze » Thu Oct 15, 2009 3:57 pm

Jan Van Quirm wrote:Now - something that's been niggling at me - Wen's servant (guess what - forgotten his name already :roll: ). Does he remind anyone else of Lu Tse? :twisted:


That's Clodpool. I wondered about that when I first read it, but I decided it wasn't him. First of all, I think he's just too dumb. Secondly, I don't see Lu Tse as the kind of man who would change his name in order to improve his image. If he was, he wouldn't be a shabbily-dressed sweeper!

I think Clodpool was either:

1. Comic relief (hence the word "clod" in his name, indicating that he's very dumb), or
2. The Abbot (who's never actually named and also very old).

As unromantic as it feels, I'm inclined to go with number 1, since I think Clodpool was too dumb to evolve into the Abbot either.
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Postby Tonyblack » Thu Oct 15, 2009 4:18 pm

Jan Van Quirm wrote:
poohcarrot wrote:
Jan Van Quirm wrote:The life-timer is a 'tracking' type device for Lu -Tse only, as he's a mortal depite being able to postpone his own death.

Now - something that's been niggling at me - Wen's servant (guess what - forgotten his name already :roll: ). Does he remind anyone else of Lu Tse? :twisted:


First paragraph; He can postpone his own death even longer now because of the decapitation trick. When he dies, he will be sent back in time to when he had his head chopped off, so won't make the same mistake again, so not die.

Second paragraph; No, because he's stupid.

You think so? Woot! *rolls up sleeves* :lol:

Is he stupid? Weren't we all stupid when we were much, much younger and before we knew better? It was more the attitude I meant. Parts of it just seemed to fit in with all the sending up that Lu-Tse does about just being a sweeper and never doing the mainstream History Monk things in a properly inscrutable and reverent fashion. :P
If anything, it occurred to me that Clodpole may have been an earlier incarnation of the Abbot rather that Lu-Tze. After all, we know the Abbot is around 100 years older than Lu-Tze. :) However, there is no evidence that I can see from the book that Clodpole is either of them.

Regarding Unity - she may not have lived long enough to form any ideas of what sort of afterlife she believes in, but that's consistant with the other books. She will presumably spend time in the 'black desert' until she makes that decision.
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Postby CrysaniaMajere » Thu Oct 15, 2009 5:30 pm

Tonyblack wrote:Regarding Unity - she may not have lived long enough to form any ideas of what sort of afterlife she believes in, but that's consistant with the other books. She will presumably spend time in the 'black desert' until she makes that decision.


The black desert, where you sit and think, just like one of the two Mr (I don't remember their name, sorry :oops: ) in The Truth, when he can't answer right away so he sits and thinks. The question was something like 'are you sorry of what you did?'.. Well it seems i must re-read the book, I thought i remembered everything but now...
As soon as I get home I'll read that part of the book!

Anyway, i forgot about the desert where you can think before you go... Death is a nice guy after all.. :D
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Postby kakaze » Fri Oct 16, 2009 12:14 am

CrysaniaMajere wrote:
Tonyblack wrote:Regarding Unity - she may not have lived long enough to form any ideas of what sort of afterlife she believes in, but that's consistant with the other books. She will presumably spend time in the 'black desert' until she makes that decision.


The black desert, where you sit and think, just like one of the two Mr (I don't remember their name, sorry :oops: ) in The Truth, when he can't answer right away so he sits and thinks. The question was something like 'are you sorry of what you did?'.. Well it seems i must re-read the book, I thought i remembered everything but now...
As soon as I get home I'll read that part of the book!

Anyway, i forgot about the desert where you can think before you go... Death is a nice guy after all.. :D


Mr. Tulip and Mr. Pin. If I remember right, Mr. Tulip learns about his victims and then sits and thinks for a while before being reincarnated as a woodworm and Mr. Pin doesn't think at all before being reincarnated as a potato (which is then fried into chips).

The character who really sat and thought was Vorbis from Small Gods. He waited for about a hundred years for Brutha to show up, and Death indicated that in the desert a hundred years "could seem like an eternity".
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Postby CrysaniaMajere » Sat Oct 17, 2009 10:01 am

Yes, I checked yesterday. Mr Tulip is the happy woodworm.
Regarding Small Gods, I didn't remember it because it was not exactly one of my favourite books..

poohcarrot wrote:I think the person who really saved the world was the female version of Time - Lobsang/Jeremy's mum. As she could see past, present and future, she knew the auditors would stop time. She made sure that her children were born at the right time and place, and be old enough to be involved and save the world by uniting their bodies. She did it all so she could retire with Wen and live in a little "cottage". 8)

Now, THIS is a lovely thought! Soooo romantic... Image
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Postby poohcarrot » Sat Oct 17, 2009 1:59 pm

(Apologies for the grammar correction.) I'm glad there's at least 3 of us that are romantic. As Lu-Tse would say, "Remember that thought". :lol:
"Disliking Carrot would be like kicking a puppy."
"You kicked a puppy," Lobsang said accusingly.
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Postby CrysaniaMajere » Sat Oct 17, 2009 4:00 pm

poohcarrot wrote:(Apologies for the grammar correction.) I'm glad there's at least 3 of us that are romantic. As Lu-Tse would say, "Remember that thought". :lol:


The only grammar correction made to me was the "used to be" lesson.. I don't know the others, but personally i'm happy for that lesson, because I didn't know that. Now i know. I hope. :wink:
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Postby kakaze » Sat Oct 17, 2009 4:25 pm

poohcarrot wrote:I think the person who really saved the world was the female version of Time - Lobsang/Jeremy's mum. As she could see past, present and future, she knew the auditors would stop time. She made sure that her children were born at the right time and place, and be old enough to be involved and save the world by uniting their bodies. She did it all so she could retire with Wen and live in a little "cottage". 8)


But, since the auditors, Jeremy, Lobsang, and Susan are all unaffected by time, then Time would not be able to see them. All she would know is that Time would be trapped and time would then stand still, not what would actually happen or who would cause it to happen or be trying to fix it.

Marrying Wen and having a son because she can see the end of the world coming up would be like Darwin noticing that the finches on the Galapagos Islands are different than on the Mainland and thereby theorizing the structure of DNA.
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Postby Jan Van Quirm » Sat Oct 17, 2009 6:40 pm

kakaze wrote:Marrying Wen and having a son because she can see the end of the world coming up would be like Darwin noticing that the finches on the Galapagos Islands are different than on the Mainland and thereby theorizing the structure of DNA.

But that's what Darwin did do effectively, except he didn't know it was to do with DNA because that hadn't been identified at the time. He still discovered the theory of it by making the leap through the idea of 'natural selection' which is effectively non-conscious selective breeding whereby the animals specialising most and in tune with the natural conditions of their locale, then out-fed, out-bred and eventually out-evolved others of their species simply by being better at 'working' efficiently in their niche environments by then becoming the dominant breeders in that population. So Lady Time needn't have been conscious as to the 'why' or the 'who' of how time was stopped BUT knowing it would she may have somehow had the unconscious 'trigger' to breed (putting it coarsely :twisted: ) since she was the best evolved deity/anthropomorphic entity around to assess the requirement to breed instinctively and/or unconsiously to search for her mate (Wen) and to reproduce the solution inherent in the genetics created inside their bi-furcated son.

See - the magnificence of Terry! :lol: Not only does he prove the Descent of Man but also the Theory of the Wrong Trouser Legs of Time - in reverse (by Jeremy and Lobsang travelling up their respective trouser legs and there just in the nick of the gusset of Time to save the Disc)... :twisted: :wink:
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Postby Tonyblack » Sat Oct 17, 2009 9:13 pm

NOTE: This was posted by swreader not Tonyblack.

kakaze wrote:
poohcarrot wrote:I think the person who really saved the world was the female version of Time - Lobsang/Jeremy's mum. As she could see past, present and future, she knew the auditors would stop time. She made sure that her children were born at the right time and place, and be old enough to be involved and save the world by uniting their bodies. She did it all so she could retire with Wen and live in a little "cottage". 8)


But, since the auditors, Jeremy, Lobsang, and Susan are all unaffected by time, then Time would not be able to see them. All she would know is that Time would be trapped and time would then stand still, not what would actually happen or who would cause it to happen or be trying to fix it.

Marrying Wen and having a son because she can see the end of the world coming up would be like Darwin noticing that the finches on the Galapagos Islands are different than on the Mainland and thereby theorizing the structure of DNA.


Pooh, your romantic theorizing is "lovely and romantic" but you forget this is a novel--not an alternate reality depiction of a world. Terry is writing a novel here. The real question is what function do Wen and Time (as the Mother serve). I think a much more valid answer is that they are necessary parts of the story and function as the "back story" of the main plot. They are used, for example, to "explain" the development and function of procrastinators, and to further explore some part of Terry's theories of "time" (the constant destruction and creation of the Universe by Time). Only incidentally do they provide a pleasant "ending" for two characters whose function is simultaneously huge but relatively minor.

Kakaze, there is no reason to believe that Time (as the Mother) cannot see immortal figures. In fact, DEATH does, at times, see other immortals (as in Hogswatch). This is part of the narrative causality; it gives a reason for DEATH to bring Susan in to help him. DEATH has already saved the world in earlier novels. This particular anomaly is required because to the extent that Susan and Lobsang/Jeremy are alike, he shouldn't be able to see her either. It's a literary device for splitting the novel into two plot-lines, and giving DEATH a different role in the novel. There is every indication that DEATH has no trouble seeing Famine, Pestilence, or War, and he has long conversations with both Soak and Chaos. That is his function in the novel and the battle with the auditors.
But it is through the other plot line that Pratchett explores the nature of time--and that requires a different set of characters.

There is a danger here of forgetting that this is a novel, with a satiric basis--not a depiction of an alternate reality (as some of the fantasy/sci-fi authors do). And in a way, it is a mark of Pratchett's genius--his characters are so well developed and realistic (if occasionally quite odd) that we tend to think of them as real inhabitants of our world, rather than literary creations of the literary Discworld.

The real questions we need to think about are questions like "Who/what is being satirized in the creation of the auditors and why does Pratchett think this mind-set is so dangerous?" or "Does Susan's teaching suggest that humanity can learn to use our brains to see reality rather than what we want to see?" There are many others, but this is really a longer post than my shoulder is happy with.

Thanks for all the good thoughts, everyone. I get very frustrated in reading your discussions especially of this novel because this is one of my special favorites in the Pratchett cannon.
Last edited by Tonyblack on Sat Oct 17, 2009 10:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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