Monday, June 17, 2019

"You Have a Wild Talent, and That's Your Specialty"

"Wild Talents, Inc."
By Milton Lesser (1928-2008).
First appearance: Science Fiction Quarterly, August 1952.

Reprints page (HERE).
Short story (10 pages).
Online at (HERE).
(Note: Text is faded.)
(Parental caution: Mild profanity.)

     "If something moves—if anything moves that shouldn't—you'll be dead."

Even with a ten-million-dollar lining a trap is still a trap . . .

Comment: When our author uses the word teleportation he seems to mean a more special-ized process called telekinesis (a.k.a. psychokinesis), a so-called psychic power that, like Amos's talent, doesn't necessarily use a machine.

Major characters:
~ Amos Terwilliger:
  "I teleport. Teleport. T-e-l-e-p-o-r-t."
~ Jane:
  "You'd be surprised how many phoney wild talents there are."
~ Christopher Cuff:
  ". . . was a legend in the twenty-first century solar system; Terwilliger never heard of anyone who had seen him."

Typos: "lending library calliber"; "existance"; "you're a specialists"; "applies to teleport-aiton"; "specialziation"; "reventing".

- For more about teleportation (the kind requiring a machine) see Wikipedia (HERE), Discover Magazine Online (HERE), the "Teleportation Tropes" links page at TV Tropes (HERE), and Winchell Chung's Atomic Rockets page on matter transmitters (HERE); compare all of that 
with TV Tropes's "Mind Over Matter" page (HERE).
- One of our characters says the Corporation "trained me on Jupiter, with Jupiter's gravity," which is highly unlikely; go to Wikipedia (HERE) and (HERE) to find out about the giant planet in fact and fiction. Other places in the Solar System that are mentioned in the story: Ceres (Wikipedia: HERE and HERE); Mars (Wikipedia: HERE and HERE); Venus (Wikipedia: HERE and HERE); Ganymede (Wikipedia: HERE and HERE); and Iapetus (Wikipedia: HERE and HERE).
- This story is not to be confused with one by Robert Sheckley with the same title (HERE).
- Well over a year ago we featured a Milton Lesser story, "I'm Holding a Gun on You" (HERE), published under his Darius John Granger alias; when you go there, pay attention to the Resources links.

The bottom line:

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