The Very Strange & Surreal, Yet Also Darkly Funny, Story Of Mostly Purple Patty And The Orange Skinned President

…co-starring her best buddy, Alex Baldwin

 

 

The Doclopedia #1,315

Well, That’s Different: The Conquest Of The Air

(I’ve gone to several alternate worlds almost identical to our Earth, but at different stages of the past. Sometimes, I’ve caused some changes. Here is one.)

Earth 22-C is at the year 1964 as of today, but when we first visited it, it was the year 1851 and a few people were beginning to get ideas for building airships of one sort or another. I met several of these fellows in London at the Crystal Palace Exhibition. They had some interesting ideas, so I started telling them ways that they could build airships that were much better than anything they dreamed of. I told them about how to keep hydrogen safer from combustion, the theory behind jet engines, what materials they should use, and a bunch of other stuff I pulled up on my handy laptop that was disguised as a book. Our discussions lasted well into the night. The next day, Grace, The Girls and myself left that Earth for Earth 133-D, an Earth with superheroes.

I thought about the whole airship discussion and decided to go back to that reality to see how things turned out after about a dozen years. What I saw amazed me.

Right off the bat, the American Civil War had lasted all of 7 months, because the North sent it’s vastly larger and better airship fleet to pummel the Confederacy into submission. They may have been a bit heavy handed, but the result was an end to slavery and a country that reunited pretty quickly thanks to a bunch of Northerners going south to help get things back on track, mostly by deciding to live there. Factor in the South being way short on men over the age of about 13 and you can see how the reuniting probably went.

The British took a bit longer to get the whole airship thing going, partly because they already had a hell of a regular navy and partly because of political differences. However, when they saw that France, Germany and the United States were getting ahead of them, they started building airships as fast as they could. By the time they were caught up to at least France & Germany, their Air Navy was one of the best. That caused France to convert a goodly number of their fleet to pleasure or cargo vessels. They made a ton of money from that, which came in handy when the First Aerial War started up in 1879.

The War of the Air also took place on the sea and land. It was started by an “Axis of Evil” formed by Germany, Austria-Hungary, Japan and, surprisingly, Mexico. Seems the USA was not only stepping on Mexico’s toes, but was not paying any attention to what all those Germans and Japanese were helping build way out in the desert. And friends, the Germans built excellent military airships. Huge and holding as much weaponry as they could lift, they had the Allies (France, Italy, Great Britain and the United States) on the ropes for about a year.

Then Russia and Brazil joined the Allies, the Brits finally built a working jet engine, and the War did a big turnaround. In the spring of 1881, the Axis powers were defeated and would not get up to anything for about 40 years, at which point the Second World War starts. That war lasted 6 years and airships by then were used mostly for passengers and cargo. By the end of the war, nobody was using airships for military purposes beyond the odd very high altitude bombing run.

As I said, airships were mostly used for cargo, a job at which they excelled, and passenger travel, which they did with far more amenities, comfort, and profit than a jet ever could. Even now, in the mid-60s, most people traveling for pleasure fly on airships.

Airships are also used in construction and for scientific research. There are even smaller airships that people buy and use the way we do recreational vehicles. On Earth 22-C, airships are here to stay.

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Ground Control To Major Mom

…wait, what?

 

Dog Con 7

 

Day 13: In which we review the bachelor party, wake up in Critter City, grab con stuff and then take part in the best wedding of two imaginary cats that you will ever hear about.

11:00 pm

Lulu here again, folks, with a rather too short bachelor party report, because although my power source is still running just fine, my poor silicon brain is overheating from all that has gone on these last couple of days. I need to enter sleep cycle.

Bachelor party highlights…

We were decked out in steampunkish clothing and carrying many strange steampunk Victorian era weapons.

After drinking some hooch, we lit out to rob a train carrying twenty tons of gold.

After we got the train stopped, Dr. Miguelito Loveless and his gang hauled up in a humongous airship and stole all but one brick of gold.

Later, we were caught with the brick and most of us were tossed in jail. The Sheriff looked like John Wayne.

Train owner wanted us hanged, mine owner wanted the gold back. Mine owner said he’d hire us to get it back.

Late at might: JAILBREAK! Uncle Mike and Uncle Peter to the rescue!

We stole an airship belonging to the railroad. Started chasing Loveless.

Lost Loveless, so we went into Denver to make plans. Barroom brawl ensued. Uncle Spike tossed a guy through a window. Daddy used a gas gun on two guys. Chris and Willie took out three more. Flash & Leon were all over the biggest guy. I used my tail laser to cut us an escape route.

Back on the trail of Loveless. Had to ditch US Army airship first. Uncle Mike was driving.

Caught up to Loveless! Uncle Spike, Chris & Cosmo lobbed grenades! Dad, Uncle Peter, Uncle Brian and Uncle Gabriel all jumped off our ship (we were 300 feet above Loveless) with bungee cord tied to their legs. They took Flash, Leon, Dex and Clancy with them! I used my laser to cut slits in that airship’s covering, which they fell through. Then they turned loose the cats & Clancy! THEN, they tied off the ropes and Uncle Mike started winching us down. THEN, we started boarding!

Big fight! Gunfire! Stun grenades! Psycho cats! A badass pig & Scotty dog! Humans kicking ass and not giving a fuck about names! FIRE! Loveless escapes! We haul ass outta there! Big hydrogen explosion! Twenty tons of gold melts into one big chunk and falls 6,000 feet into the Nevada desert! BIG crater!

We land and grab a shitload of gold, maybe 2 tons, then split before the Army arrives.

PARTY IN SAN FRANCISCO!

Whew! It was a fun few days, that.

Once we were all tucked in on the bus, it drove/warped us to Critter City. Man, do I love this place.

OK, back to letting Daddy write this.

Thank you, Lulu. Well, after a solid eight hours of sleep, we all ate breakfast at Waffles From Outer Space, because Bacon & Butter Flavored Syrup! Then we checked into our rooms at the Hilton. Once that was done, we got our con badges and goodie bags. Some great stuff this year, the best of which were the “DogCon 7: The Wedding Of Flash & Jazz” t-shirts. Flash got so choked up he couldn’t speak.

(Sasha: Me and Lulu set that up. Pretty much the whole con will be at the wedding, or watching it on the big screens all over town.)

(Silky: Holy moley, this place is SO cool! We are under a dome! There are animals everywhere!)

(Daisy: I’ve been hearing about this place for a year! I’m having a nerdgasm!)

(Roxy: Wow! Just…wow!)

Other goodies included “Kings of Dragon Underpass” ball caps, a couple of free D&D adventures, a mini boardgame called “Herding Cats”, a shitload of flyers and discount coupons for all sorts of stuff.

We spent about the next three hours making con plans and welcoming a near endless string of con-goers and wedding guests, including four elephants.

(Daisy: Mama Florence and her daughters are way cool.)

Abigail and Beatrice (our dwarf Nigerian goats) stopped by and there were hugs all around. We’ll see them at the wedding and also at the con AND at their stage show on Friday.

Around 1:00, we went for lunch at Pizza My Heart.

(Daisy: They make pizzas especially for us critters! OMG!)

And now, I’m signing off because it’s time to start getting ready for the wedding. More bloggage AND the wedding report tomorrow.

(Jazz: Wedding time. AAIIIIIEEEEEE!!!!!)

Destination Sign when we started: Duckburg


Destination Sign when we stopped: Greyhawk

Music: The Girl Group Channel

Never Stick Your Finger In A Hot Meatloaf

…and no, that is NOT a euphemism

The Doclopedia #142

The Alphabet: A

 

A is for AIRSHIPS

Several other realities have airships as a means of transport for both cargo and passengers. The exact nature of the lifting mechanism is almost as varied as the design of the ships. For example…

In the 1930’s CyberPulp world, airships look pretty much like the zeppelins in our world did, but they are much larger because the gas used for lift is helium, not hydrogen. While airplanes are faster, most people like the roomier and more refined mode of travel an airship provides. Another big bonus is that despite their huge size, airships can land in much smaller areas than planes.

On the Earths where magic dominates, airships are truly ships that sail in the air. They can be lifted by enchanted wood, magical stones or just plain old spells. On some worlds, such ships are rare, while on others they are as common as seagoing ships.

While most steampunk worlds have airships that lift via hydrogen or helium, a few use amazing scientific devices or processes for lift. Most notable among these would be Professor Chan’s Gravity Repulsion Effect, which uses a steam engine to power some sort of electrical coils for lift.

In the Tooniverse, it is best not to think too much about what is holding the ship up. It might just stop doing it.

On Mars 12, airships are the primary mode of air travel and there are thousands of them ranging is size from small one person pedal powered runabouts to the truly enormous (1.75 miles long!) luxury liner, “Dejah Voo”, which endlessly circles the Martian equator.

Finally, airships are still popular and profitable in the 2030’s CyberPulp world. At that point, they are huge jet propelled V shaped craft that merrily scoot along at 300 miles an hour while the passengers do everything from sleep to listed to a live band to jack into the latest VR programs.