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Q: Sci-Fi short story from 60's or 70's ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: Sci-Fi short story from 60's or 70's
Category: Arts and Entertainment > Books and Literature
Asked by: markvmd-ga
List Price: $7.00
Posted: 31 Oct 2005 12:19 PST
Expires: 30 Nov 2005 12:19 PST
Question ID: 587142
About 30 years ago I read a short story in a sci-fi (or quasi-sci-fi)
collection. The upshot of the story turned out to be that the
characters, who had names like Emodee (an actual name from the story,
if memory serves) and Emily, were "monsters", disfigured children kept
in a sort of creche. Their names were actually initials that started
with "M" (for "monster"), as in MOD and MLE.

Does this trigger any memories? I'm looking for the collection but
will settle for the title and the author.

I think  another story in the collection involved a youngster as the
main character who figured out that the government was manipulating
the populace by doping the food and controlling the airwaves. "They"
sent subliminal messages including that the main character needed to
be killed, so an attempt was made on his life while he was on an
escalator. Part of how the Powers That Be found out the kid was onto
them was he ate organic food at some point in the story. I can assure
you that I am not thinking of "This Perfect Day" by Ira Levin.

I do not know if the whole collection was by one author or several.
The two above stories seemed to have a similar feel to them, but that
may just be my memory. These would probably fifth- or sixth-grade
level stories.
Subject: Re: Sci-Fi short story from 60's or 70's
Answered By: juggler-ga on 31 Oct 2005 12:53 PST
Rated:5 out of 5 stars

The story about the doped food was "A Bowl of Biskies Makes a Growing
Boy" (1973) by Raymond F. Jones.

"The story that made the greatest impression was "A Bowl of Biskies
Makes a Growing Boy" by Raymond F. Jones. Our young hero in the near
future notices that all the foods that he eats have one ingredient in
common. Curious, he tries to discover what that ingredient does. Not
only do his investigations come to naught, a very suspicious accident
occurs that could have been a murder attempt. When he tries eating
only natural food, he experiences violent withdrawal symptoms.
Finally, he is shipped off to a special school, where through a
combination of drugs he is reduced to the mental level of an

The anthology was likely "The Other Side of Tomorrow."  The story
about the "disfigured children" was likely Joseph Green's "Let My
People Go."

"Joseph Green's "Let My People Go" is the story of the last few
genetic throwbacks in a future of perfect people. These normal
children in a world of super-normals resort to their only weapon --
emotional manipulation -- to win their freedom.'

Used copies of "The Other Side of Tomorrow" begin at $1 on

search strategy:
google groups: rec.arts.sf.written, subliminal story
biskies story
"bowl of biskies"

markvmd-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $3.00
Excellent work, as always. When I saw the word "Biskies" a light when
on and much of the story flooded came back to me! Then as I read the
description of "Let My People Go" and got to the emotional
manipulation bit, I remembered the end almost word for word, coming
from a dusty, cobwebby part of my mind (think Chevy Chase talking to
John Belushi: "It was all.. all dark and empty in there. And there
were little mice in the corners and spiders had spun this web... (and)
I kept bumping my head on the ceiling...").


Subject: Re: Sci-Fi short story from 60's or 70's
From: juggler-ga on 31 Oct 2005 17:59 PST
Thank you for the tip.

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