Guards! Guards! begins with an Ankh-Morpork brought to her knees by the fiascos of its previous rulers and the manipulations of its present Patrician, Lord Vetinari. Lord Vetinari has worked hard to subvert any thought of traditional social contract between ruler and the ruled. He has created organized crime/intricate guild system and subverted Ankh-Morpork’s police force/Watch. Its officers are no longer considered a threat to those who break the “law”.
The city wasa, wasa, wasa wossname. Thing. Woman. Thass what it was. Woman. Roaring, ancient, centuries old. Strung you along, let you fall in thingy, love with her, then kicked you inna, inna, thingy. thingy, in your mouth. Tongue. Tonsils. Teeth. That’s what it, she did. She wasa … thing, you know, lady dog. Puppy. Hen. Bitch. And then you hated her and, and, just when you thought you’d got her, it, out of your, whatever, then…
“But here, away from the great centres of population, where the Circle Sea meets the desert, there is a line of cold blue fire. Flames as chilly as the slopes of Hell roar towards the sky. Ghostly light flickers across the desert.
The pyramids in the ancient valley of the Djel are flaring their power into the night.
The energy streaming up from their paracosmic peaks may, in chapters to come, illuminate many mysteries: why tortoises hate philosophy, why too much religion is bad for goats, and what it is that handmaidens actually do.”
As the Discworld unfolds, the stories become more poignant. Yes, gags, plays on words, and downright bizarreness are plentiful. Except, this isn’t why Pratchett remains one of my alltime favourite authors. Real world people and events (even historical) are. Pyramids is sort of about Egyptian history, all boy boarding schools (particularly final examinations), family, coming…
My blogs terrypratchettandme and zanegreyandme are what often happens when an Aspie has an interest. We immerse ourselves and want to share. This collage is an example of that immersion. The Luggage is a great writing tool whose antics I have enjoyed immensely.
Yesterday, Terry Pratchett died, only 68 years old. All of 68 years old. I’m guttered.
Once Pratchett told us about his Alzheimer, my intellect told me we would only have a few years more of him. Now that the moment has arrived, those years seem too short for a person who became a dear friend.
I never met Mr. (Sir) Pratchett. Or maybe I did. His books, his documentary and his speeches have all made my days brighter. All revealed a side I, the public, could partake of.
When Snuff and She Wears Midnight came out, and I had completed the books, I remember just sitting there needing to digest the stories. They felt like a first goodbye from Terry. Then came the public appearances when people had to read his speeches out loud for him. Writing them weren’t the problem, as long as someone else could type his dictation. As long as another person could read out loud what he had dictated. Alzheimer had taken the ability to recognize physical objects.
I miss him. Already! Hopefully, the love of the world will bring some small comfort to his near and dear ones.
“Sometimes I get nice letters from people who know they’re due to meet him (Death) soon, and hope I’ve got him right.
Those are the kind of letters that cause me to stare at the wall for some time.”
― Terry Pratchett, The Art of Discworld
“The Supreme Grand Master smiled in the depths of his robes. It was amazing, this mystic business. You tell them a lie, and then when you don’t need it any more you tell them another lie and tell them they’re progressing along the road to wisdom. Then instead of laughing, they follow you even more, hoping that at the heart of all the lies they’ll find the truth. And bit by bit they accept the unacceptable. Amazing.”
”Vimes had half expected the Scone to explode, or crumble, or flash red-hot. Which was stupid, said a dwindling part of himself – it was a fake, a nonsense, something made in Ankh-Morpork for money, something that had already cost lives. It was not, it could not be real.
But in the roaring air he knew that it was, for all who needed to believe, and in a belief so strong that truth was not the same as fact … he knew that for now, and yesterday, and tomorrow, both the thing, and the whole of the thing.”
Terry Pratchett (2000), “The Fifth Elephant”, London: Transworld Publishers, Corgi Books