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A Really Odd Question

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Chris Malcheski, Mar 20, 2017 at 2:54 PM.

  1. Chris Malcheski

    Chris Malcheski New Member

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    Sorry if this is long winded, but it's a very specific question...

    I'm writing a science fiction novel that centers around 3 guys who jump back in time to just after the Pearl Harbor invasion. Their arrival is an accident, and in their first moments in '41, they find themselves on a rocky shoreline somewhere in the Midwest (presumably on the shore of Lake Michigan or somewhere similar). I have a real aversion to trite, unbelievable plots that have the heroes moving forward because of things they need falling from the sky with no effort on their part. As such, the first thing these guys need to do is obtain period clothing so they don't stick out like sore thumbs, and I just don't like the idea of "oh they found the perfect sizes hanging on somebody's clothes line and took them." The odds of their getting away with that are slim to none. The idea I had in mind was that they wait until well after sundown, and raid a clothing donation drop box somewhere. What little I was able to find on the web said that the Salvation Army's concept of drop boxes began during WWII but no specific year was given, and in 1941 they may not have existed yet. Further, where would they typically be found in that time period? I'm not completely stuck on that concept; it doesn't specifically have to be a Salvation Army drop box, just someplace where they would be reasonably likely to obtain passable clothing for three guys some time after midnight without drawing attention to themselves.

    Few people are going to have any idea about this, but I like accuracy so I'm trying to get some idea of what I could plug in here that would be historically accurate. There's always somebody who knows about this kind of thing, as strange a question as it is. Thanks much!
     
  2. belasar

    belasar Court Jester

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    First off Pearl Harbor was not 'invaded', it was attacked by carrier born aircraft. That's one of those fact's you want to get right. As for clothing, unless they are gang bangers straight from the 'hood', most current clothing from today would pass for at least a little while, long enough to get to a soup kitchen/charity to get better/more clothes. The kicker would be winter clothes, its gonna be really cold near Lake Michigan in December. Remember people are different back then, a stranger coming to the front door asking to help and getting it was not all that uncommon in a rural area.
     
  3. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana

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    Church donations. They see a sign out front of a church saying "We have reached our goal for donated food items for the poor. We can still use more donated clothes, especially school clothes and men's work clothes." They peek in the windows of a back room and see racks with clothes hanging off them.
     
  4. Brian Smith

    Brian Smith Active Member

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    A really odd question and maybe you have hit on the right place for a few really odd answers.However I cannot help but note the contradiction in your introduction. You have a real aversion to trite, unbelievable plots but you have 3 guys time travelling back to 1941!? I think your story falls before clothing or anything else needs to be considered.
     
  5. Chris Malcheski

    Chris Malcheski New Member

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    "Facts." No apostrophe. That's one of those early grammar school teachings you want to get right. As for "invasion" vs. "attack," while a hardcore purist *might* take issue with whatever distinction exists, the average reader I'm targeting (science fiction) would not. I read and hear the event referred to as an "invasion" 99% of the time that I read or hear about it at all.

    I'm going on the assumption that screen printed t-shirts would not be passable anywhere in 1941. Levi's (apostrophe is appropriate), probably, but I tend to think few to no people milled about town wearing them in that day and age.
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2017 at 5:00 PM
  6. Chris Malcheski

    Chris Malcheski New Member

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    Hence the term "fiction." Science can't even cure the common cold, they cannot define "love," and they are frequently 50 years late in awarding their Nobel prizes for physics because they're too busy laughing at whatever discovery they're ultimately the last to figure out is legitimate. So science is not much of a basis for declaring something impossible.

    Many books, movies, and TV shows have performed respectably on the premise of time travel. The jump itself is one event that sends the characters back, and a device nobody understands can fully account for why it happened. Once at their destination, the device is gone, and there is no accounting for impossible miracle after impossible miracle falling from the sky. So a little more imagination has to be applied.

    It's a fictional story. Those who don't like it won't read it.
     
  7. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large

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    Invasion is totally incorrect. If you want to tank your story as per historical accuracy right off the bat call the Pearl Harbor attack an "invasion". If 99% of the accounts you've read state it was an invasion, I'd suggest improving your sources. Belasar was not trying to "bust you chops", he was simply trying to correct a glaring error.
     
  8. Chris Malcheski

    Chris Malcheski New Member

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    There is always one person who simply answers the question, intelligently and competently, without judging it, slamming it, or beating it down. I thank you kindly and will use your idea ... now we discuss your royalties! LOL!
     
  9. Chris Malcheski

    Chris Malcheski New Member

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    Well, if I misuse terminology, then doing so will be my price to pay.
     
  10. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large

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    P.S. one of your other respondents, OpanaPointer, has done more research, and is more knowledgeable on the subject of Pearl Harbor than anyone you'll ever likely come across.
     
  11. Chris Malcheski

    Chris Malcheski New Member

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    A few weeks ago I actually had the PRIVILEGE of talking (all too briefly) with a 90 year old guy I ran across in Costco; he was an MP stationed at Pearl Harbor from 1942 through the end of the war. He had a lot of spy stories to tell; apparently Oahu was crawling with them. Also he claimed that bodies were floating up from the U.S.S. Arizona for years after it sank - something I find curious since I would think they would have decomposed but I am an idiot on such matters. Anyway the curious thing is that he would have been between 15 and 16 on arrival there. Maybe his memory is a little off.
     
  12. chibobber

    chibobber Member

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    Why ask for advise and then argue/disagree with the person who responded? It's your story,write it the way you want it.Remember an animal designed by committee will look like a platypus.
    Good luck with your project.
     
  13. Brian Smith

    Brian Smith Active Member

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    Many books, movies, and TV shows have performed respectably on the premise of time travel. The jump itself is one event that sends the characters back, and a device nobody understands can fully account for why it happened. Once at their destination, the device is gone, and there is no accounting for impossible miracle after impossible miracle falling from the sky. So a little more imagination has to be applied.

    It's a fictional story. Those who don't like it won't read it.[/QUOTE]

    Regret to have to tell you no book, movie or TV show has performed respectably on the premise of time travel. Time travel is the impossible miracle you claim you want to avoid, but maybe you cannot see that..

    Given your answers elsewhere on this thread and your disparaging attitude to your readers I wonder why you are bothered about such things as factual detail in your fantasy world. You obviously believe your readers will not know fact from fiction.
     
  14. O.M.A.

    O.M.A. Active Member

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    Im very surpised at you'r nitpicking someone whom was trying to offer aids to you. Clearly his apostrophy in the word "facts" was a typo. I do'nt understand you're response, it appears to be a butthurt reply to you're request for help. Its to you're own detriment really, as the people here might be some of the best people in the world to provide info on your alternate history book about Pearl Harbour.

    Sheesh. I wonder how you'll respond to your first read through by your editor?

    I hope my abundance of punctuation, spelling, and grammar errors provides you fodder.
     
  15. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana

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    Princess Leia is royalty, not me.

    As for your fiction, have fun with it.
     
  16. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large

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    Just so happens I recently heard the famous physicist Michio Kaku speak on the subject of the possibility of time travel. Apparently recent advances in theoretical physics (quantum gravity) have shown that time travel MAY be theoretically possible. Here's an article on the subject and some excerpts:

    The Physics of Time Travel : Explorations in Science :: Official Website of Dr. Michio Kaku

    "However, rather remarkable advances in quantum gravity are reviving the theory; it has now become fair game for theoretical physicists writing in the pages of Physical Review magazine. One stubborn problem with time travel is that it is riddled with several types of paradoxes."

    "Interestingly enough, Stephen Hawking once opposed the idea of time travel. He even claimed he had “empirical” evidence against it. If time travel existed, he said, then we would have been visited by tourists from the future. Since we see no tourists from the future, ergo: time travel is not possible. Because of the enormous amount of work done by theoretical physicists within the last 5 years or so, Hawking has since changed his mind, and now believes that time travel is possible (although not necessarily practical)."
     
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  17. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana

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    Okay, how many of you thought I'd flip out?
     
  18. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard

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    One vote here! ;)
     
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  19. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    Travel into the future we know of...in the past is still a secret yet to be unravelled...Ive written a book about a kid travelling back in time to meet past cricketing legends like Don Bradman...he ends up giving a bat making company some tips on how to improve their bats and gets a bunch for free...etc etc...
    As an adult science fiction fan, I would like "some" attempt to explain the travel sequence and even a couple of surprises as a result of the travel (look younger/older - Hair colour change - pictures in their wallets changing - some memory loss etc etc)
    As for clothing, putting myself in their shoes, I would be looking for someone my size and follow them home, when they leave again id steal their clothes. The other ideas result in contact with people still in "todays" clothes...my other idea I realised has already been used...remember Terminiator? He broke into a clothing shop/store at night and took what fitted...easiest way, and no contact with the locals. Remember also a lack of tv....so saying you come from a different part of the US or even another country would explain the different clothes. Having done this exercise already I can tell you this is the smallest of the problems you'll have to solve.
     
  20. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Seems like every one here needs to watch the "Back to the Future" trilogy...Remember Calvin Kline.


    And while you are at, watch "The Final Countdown" for the umpteenth time.
     

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