Cryptic Letters
Of the Month

Subject: Gravity fed water system I have a gravity fed water system in Vermont for our camp. We have no power and rely on gravity only for our water.

In the spring through the fall the system operates fine. In the winter I have to let the water run so the line from the cistern to the camp does not freeze.

The water comes from a natural spring so running the water does not waste water. However sometimes the line gets air in it which stops the water from running.

I cant seem to break the vacuum in the line now. I can blow air up to the cistern but the water will not run back down anymore. Can you help?

--- Joe Hosford


Subject: Interesting....


Bumped into your website today. Perceived a distinctive anarchist flavor in the articles. Just wondered if we are kindred spirits in the distaste of any form of government. How satisfying it would be to know that we have a mutual distaste for any form of political party/affiliation. Could my assumption be true?

--- "danegeld"

§     §     §

Dear Danegeld:

You have deconstructed us. We belong to no ideological tendance that could be written down, let alone organized into a party.

But we have a hankering for self-organization, if such a thing is possible, and harbor a soft spot for the CNT-FAI of long ago in Spain. We admit that our freewheeling anarquista ways lead to the occasional chaotic accident --- such as accidentally shooting our own guy Buenaventura Durruti --- but, hey, nobody is perfect. And remember this: we had the best songs.

But tell us about yourself. Does your E-monicker imply that you can be paid enough to refrain from ravaging the monasteries of England?

--- Dr. J. Phage

Subject: Hellfire Damnation


I will probably burn in eternal hellfire for having been inspired to write this by seeing the wax mannequin known as Stephen Hawking being escorted across campus today (this is the first, very rough draft):

The Spontaneous Emissions of Dr. Hawking
    Dr. Hawking, a brilliant astrophysicist, cannot move a single part of his body in the least way. He can however speak with perfect clarity and at normal volume, and the speech has the uncanny property of seeming to be emanating from his closed mouth (his breath coming out and going in via a healed tracheostomy).

    Acquitted with a private grant, he hires a post-doctoral scholar whose specialty is cybernetics and robotic control. The post-doc proceeds to construct an exoskeleton for Dr. Hawking which, via an exquisitely tuned speech analysis and servocontrol system, produces in real-time and in response to Dr. Hawking's speech, all of the bodily motions; down to the smallest flickering of the eyelids, appropriate to the words and inflection of Dr. Hawking.

--- M. Jennings
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