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Ray Bradbury Has Died

Unknown Lamer posted more than 2 years ago | from the he-just-moved-to-mars dept.

Books 315

dsinc was the first to note, but an anonymous reader writes "Ray Bradbury, author of Fahrenheit 451, the dystopian novel about the logical conclusion of many trends in modern society, and many other works that have inspired fans of speculative fiction for decades, has died at the age of 91 in Los Angeles, California, Tuesday night, June 5th, 2012. No details on how he died were released, but I suspect it may have had something to do with the Earth orbiting the sun over 90 times since he was born. I guess we'll have to wait to be sure."

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The most human side of scifi... (5, Insightful)

Art Popp (29075) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232853)

...is found in that man's works. He is the reason my Mom understands the wonder of extraterrestrial life, the temptations and costs of technological solutions to social problems, and has any clue as to what her son is thinking.

I owe that man a great deal more than I've spent on his books.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (5, Insightful)

elgeeko.com (2472782) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232921)

Very well put. He made a huge impact on me growing up. A lot of people think of him as only a Sci-Fi writer, but his works went way beyond that. My wife is anything buy a Scifi fan, but she was deeply influenced by Bradbury and his "Zen and the Art of Writing". He was a true master and will be deeply missed.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (3, Funny)

YodasEvilTwin (2014446) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232935)

I read The Martian Chronicles as a very young child. Pretty sure that completely f*cked me up.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (2)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233193)

Same here. Pretty bizarre stuff. I also remember the first time I read Something Wicked This Way Comes. Scared the shit out of me. We've lost one of the great ones.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (1)

muindaur (925372) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233381)

Fahrenheit 451 scared the shit out of me, but I'm also a book worm.

All those books... *shudders* ...those monsters...

Re:The most human side of scifi... (1)

morcego (260031) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233337)

I read it when I was very young also, and it f*cked me up in a different way: it created higher expectations for the books I read after. You see, I had no idea who Ray Bradbury was back then, and I figured he was not a big name.

Good memories.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40232953)

"and has any clue as to what her son is thinking"

What are you some fucking Rainman or something? A silent autist playing with block and shitting their pants between Bradbury books?

Re:The most human side of scifi... (4, Insightful)

Cornwallis (1188489) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232993)

Yes, very well put. Fahrenheit 451 was so far ahead of the times it is frightening.
His poetic use of the language will be sorely missed.
Something Wicked This Way Comes, Dandelion Wine, The Martian Chronicles... beautiful works.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (2)

Canazza (1428553) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233665)

"You're afraid of making mistakes. Don't be. Mistakes can be profited by. Man, when I was young I shoved my ignorance in people's faces. They beat me with sticks. By the time I was forty my blunt instrument had been honed to a fine cutting point for me. If you hide your ignorance, no one will hit you and you'll never learn."

Re:The most human side of scifi... (5, Interesting)

Kiyyik (954108) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233141)

Amen to that... more than his hard SF work, his stories of sheer damn everyday magic -- and I'm talking Dandelion Wine here, and Death is a Lonely Business, and so many others, captivated the hell out of me. He was the high water mark of what speculative fiction can accomplish, and taught me what SF is really about. When a reader told me my writing was alike a cross between Bradbury and Lovecraft, it was the best thing ever. Tonight... well, tonight I have a jug of dandelion wine sitting in my fridge--liquid summer, my first attempt but no less sweet. Tonight I'll raise a glass to him, and remember the long ago summers and the magic they held and the man who taught me to see them. Thank you, sir. Thank you.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (1)

koyangi (926760) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233705)

When a reader told me my writing was alike a cross between Bradbury and Lovecraft, it was the best thing ever.

Bradbury and Lovecraft combined ??? Where can I get me some of that???

Re:The most human side of scifi... (2)

danbuter (2019760) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233147)

RIP Mr. Bradbury. You were a great inspiration to me. I'm glad you got to live such a long life, and I hope you realize how many people you influenced so positively.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (2)

Kozar_The_Malignant (738483) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233313)

>I owe that man a great deal more than I've spent on his books.

I agree completely. By the age of fourteen, I had read everything in our public library by the man. He had a tremendous influence on me as I grew up.

Re:The most human side of scifi... (3, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233453)

He was the only author that was required reading in school (in several grades no less) that I still enjoyed on my own time as well. Not even English teachers can screw up Bradbury's works.

He Wanted To Catch Venus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40232893)

What a ride...

"S is for Space" first scifi book I read (2)

peter303 (12292) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232901)

And "R is for Rocket" I read 40-some years ago. They were collections of Bradbury short stories.

Collected Short Stories (5, Interesting)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233109)

And "R is for Rocket" I read 40-some years ago. They were collections of Bradbury short stories.

Indeed, I too cut my teeth on Ray Bradbury's works for fantasy and science fiction. Recently I discovered an edition of 100 of his collected short stories [amazon.com] (chosen by the man himself) that appeared to include most if not all of my favorites. For anyone looking to discover/rediscover, this is an inexpensive and fairly comprehensive route to take. These stories are written for a younger mind but are still enjoyable to me.

It might have been because I had not dealt with death on a profound level yet but his short story "Kaleidoscope" from The Illustrated Man was permanently etched upon my mind. Now Bradbury is a shooting star providing wishes and dreams to the young minds who read his works. Personally I feel that hundreds of years from now, Bradbury will join the ranks of Hans Christian Anderson, Road Dahl, etc and his works will be seen as mandatory classics for readers. Like all modern writing, some of these stories aren't the most original in their nature but they are perfect to capture a mind and set someone on a course for endless reading. It's a sad day to see such a wonderful mind pass but I will do my part to immortalize him through recommendations.

RIP (5, Funny)

krakass (935403) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232913)

Rest in peace, but is it too late to Fuck me, Ray Bradbury [funnyordie.com] ?

Re:RIP (1)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233357)

Thank you; that was a huge LOL.

Re:RIP (1)

Dr Herbert West (1357769) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233529)

Please mod +1 Awesome.

I'm super bummed at his passing, and the irreverence, love for his work, and plain ol' good times in that video (I'd forgotten all about it!) made me smile a little while being sad. I forwarded to all my buddies who I know will be just as bummed as myself.

And whoever modded your post down is a humorless dumbass.

I KNEW Venus was up to no good! (5, Funny)

Gr33nJ3ll0 (1367543) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232927)

Obviously this is all about the transition of Venus across the sun. Just like the comet took Mark Twain, Venus has claimed Bradbury!

Re:I KNEW Venus was up to no good! (0)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232977)

That would be quite a surprise, given all the stuff Bradbury wrote about Mars [slashdot.org] .

Re:I KNEW Venus was up to no good! (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233167)

He wrote stories about Venus, too. The one that has stuck in my mind was the child recently emigrated from earth who missed seeing the sun (because Venus was cloudy and rainy). The school teacher had locked her in the closet for some behavioral thing, and the child missed a brief and rare siting of the sun because of that. He was a master of highlighting the all too human inhumane cruelty that we too often promulgate.

Re:I KNEW Venus was up to no good! (1)

Quirkz (1206400) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233373)

That was Bradbury? I remember reading that story in elementary school, back before I could keep track of author's names. That one has stuck with me for probably 3 decades now. I haven't read as much of his stuff as I should, but I've liked what I have read. Time to dig up some classics.

Re:I KNEW Venus was up to no good! (3, Informative)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233501)

All Summer in a Day. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All_Summer_in_a_Day [wikipedia.org]

I first read it on my own, then was surprised when it showed up in English class a few years later

Re:I KNEW Venus was up to no good! (1)

thelexx (237096) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233459)

What was the name of that Venus story? I'm rather certain a film version was made of it and I was just recently trying to locate it again. I definitely remember seeing a film about kids on a rainy world many years ago that stuck in my mind, and your description fleshes out the hazy memory of it perfectly.

Re:I KNEW Venus was up to no good! (0)

gregg (42218) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233569)

He wrote stories about Venus, too. The one that has stuck in my mind was the child recently emigrated from earth who missed seeing the sun (because Venus was cloudy and rainy).

The story you are referring to is All Summer in a Day [wikipedia.org]

damn sad. (5, Funny)

grub (11606) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232949)

I loved his book Celsius 233.

Re:damn sad. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233025)

I see what you did there!

Re:damn sad. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233115)

Rømer 130 had better characterization.

Re:damn sad. (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233487)

Yes, but the typesetters of most countries went into a hissy fit over it.

Re:damn sad. (1)

Tarlus (1000874) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233469)

Not to mention the sequel, Kelvin 505.

Fahrenheit 451 (1)

Anne_Nonymous (313852) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232959)

>> Fahrenheit 451

So is he going to be cremated with his greatest work then?

Re: Fahrenheit 451 (1)

stud9920 (236753) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233005)

Buryal seems more appropriate

His most famous work (5, Informative)

onyxruby (118189) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232975)

Fahrenheit 451 wasn't about censorship [cracked.com] . I know 100 people who know nothing else about the book except cliff notes or what they got off wikipedia are about to make that comment. So I'll save you the trouble. It was about TV and the mental wasteland that he thought it represented.

Re:His most famous work (4, Insightful)

ravenshrike (808508) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233031)

According to Bradbury it wasn't about censorship. According to everybody else and their mother it WAS about censorship. So clearly the takeaway is that Bradbury sucks at getting his point across.

Re:His most famous work (1)

onyxruby (118189) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233071)

Given the choice between the author of the book and the masses I'm inclined to take the side of the author. That being said, your point that he sucked about getting his point across is one that I have to freely concede.

Re:His most famous work (5, Interesting)

hal2814 (725639) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233181)

I'd side with the masses. It's not particularly important what the author intended. It only matters what people take away from it. However, a contradiction between those two parties doesn't mean an author sucks at getting his/her point across. It just means when the work was released and took on a life of its own, the takeaway was different than what the author originally envisioned. There's nothing wrong with that.

Re:His most famous work (2)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233437)

Except that the book doesn't say anything meaningful about censorship. It's not like 1984, where the point is that those in power have a strong incentive to control everything those under them are exposed to, and if left unchecked would destroy the truth by the time it got to you. Burning books is just something that is done in Fahrenheit 451.

Re:His most famous work (1)

Maskull (636191) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233195)

Not really. I think if you read the book (as I did), not for some high school English class (where you have to find the "correct" meaning or you fail), but on your own, without any preconceptions, it's pretty obvious what he was getting at. He makes it clear that the government, in burning books, is only doing what the people want.

Re:His most famous work (1)

EvilBudMan (588716) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233451)

It's just like what we are doing now is what the majority of people want to ensure their safety. Why do the want this? TV and now the internet is why? So take it how you want it, the outcome is the same either way.

Re:His most famous work (1)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233207)

Given the choice between the author of the book and the masses I'm inclined to take the side of the author.

Why can't both be right?

Re:His most famous work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233263)

the point was even more subtle and elegant, in that, censorship by whom, that government is not an institution that stands apart from the masses that comprise it; It's a tale of how they had come to those particular ends. Most people were quite taken with the censorship part, whats often misunderstood, is that Bradbury was only trying to tell us that for him the "how" was more important then the "what"

Re:His most famous work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233305)

tl:dr, and totally off topic, Cracked is a bullshit site that deals in half truths

Re:His most famous work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233359)

Not so different from /., eh?

Re:His most famous work (1)

Baloroth (2370816) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233545)

tl:dr, and totally off topic, The Internet is a bullshit place that deals in half truths

FTFY.

Re:His most famous work (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233689)

Human society is a bullshit place that deals in half truths

The retcons continue.

Re:His most famous work (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233345)

The author's intent and the readership's interpretation need not agree.

Re:His most famous work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233145)

According to Bradbury it wasn't about censorship. According to everybody else and their mother it WAS about censorship.

That's why I always hated English class. Being required to infer themes the author may not have intended always upset me.

He confused the issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233311)

It wouldn't have been a problem if he didn't have the totalitarian state and their Firemen enforcers.

If he changed the plot so that people were just too lazy or stupid or to read becuase of TV, then his point would gotten across.

Doesn't really matter though. That what's makes his work great literature - it can be interpreted differently equaly well.

Re:His most famous work (3, Insightful)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233401)

Yes, that's because people are stupid and will make the simplest possible connections they can. Book burning, historically, was about specific books. Nazis would burn books with Jewish authors, Christians would burn "satanic" books.

In Bradbury's novel, they burned ALL books, and never once because anyone disagreed with anything the books said. They burned them because of rampant anti-intellectualism, which was clearly recurring throughout the book. People burn because because they know they're supposed to, and don't care to look into the matter any further. Beatty, Montag's superior, even suggested it was common for firemen to be interested, but they'd grow out of it.

You only get "censorship" from 451 if you didn't really read it.

Re:His most famous work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233563)

Yes it was about a TV fed culture, and the wasteland that created, but if it was only about that then why the Firemen? There is a subtext, that in order for TV to work it had to be free of competition from other creative outlets, and the natural imagination of the populous. Eliminating other entertainment sources was what the Firemen were doing, for the state, who was doing it for the TV industry. If I remember correctly they made excuses like that books made people unhappy, but that does not hold much water. If TV was a real entrainment solution, that made people happier, then it would not need the state to prop it up by sending (and spending for) the Firemen.

Re:His most famous work (1)

demonbug (309515) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233315)

Fahrenheit 451 wasn't about censorship [cracked.com] . I know 100 people who know nothing else about the book except cliff notes or what they got off wikipedia are about to make that comment. So I'll save you the trouble. It was about TV and the mental wasteland that he thought it represented.

That's what Bradbury said his intention was. As with all literature, the author's intention is only a part of what readers get from the book; often, even usually, there is far more in the work than the author consciously put in. Even the very best of authors are notoriously poor at picking out what their audience will find in their own work.

Re:His most famous work (5, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233593)

Books tend to have three meanings:
1) What the author meant
2) What the reader takes away from the story
3) What English teacher say the author meant and what they (the teachers) think readers should take away from the story

1 and 2 are often, but not always, the same. Neither 1 nor 2 are ever the same as 3.

Re:His most famous work (2)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233509)

I had a coworker recently tell me about many TVs she had throughout the house. She wanted to get a waterproof one to put outside by the pool, then joked about having a big screen on the bottom of the pool. I said it was like F451, and she had no idea what I meant. I described how there were TV screens everywhere, her eyes lit up and she said, "That would be awesome!" I tried to tell her how it was meant to be a distopia, not a utopia, but gave up after a few minutes.

Re:His most famous work (1)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233511)

According to Upton Sinclair [wikipedia.org] , The Jungle [wikipedia.org] was about socialism and wage slavery, not corruption and unsanitary practices in the meatpacking business. Still doesn't change how it was received by EVERYONE else, or how it led to the Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906.

Something Wicked This Way Comes (5, Insightful)

chill (34294) | more than 2 years ago | (#40232985)

My wife never liked science fiction. One evening I chose "Something Wicked This Way Comes" to watch on DVD and she rolled her eyes at my choice.

After watching, she said to me "now I know why you read all that stuff. That was great!"

A true master of the art has passed.

Re:Something Wicked This Way Comes (1)

danbuter (2019760) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233171)

It's his best book, IMO. I have read it multiple times.

I saw play version of Fahrenheit 451 this year (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233015)

at the Denver Performing Arts Center. The plot elements have held up fairly well over the decades. It was written at the dawn of the television era when Bradbury witnessed TV taking over suburban lives. This fear has been re-echoed every generation since with PCs, the web, and mobile devices displacing family life and and books.

RIP (0)

Gideon Wells (1412675) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233023)

On a sad note, it is sad (redundancy win!) to see him pass on.

On the bright side, maybe we'll finally have him stop changing what the meaning of Fahrenheit 451 is. Did he ever change his mind on the whole "Wait, it isn't about censorship at all. It really is about stupid kids watching TV all the time instead of reading. That is the important message." (not an actual quote).

The American Tea Party has lost a great supporter (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233027)

See ya Ray, thanks for the support through these trying times in America

Couldn't handle the stress? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233039)

No details on how he died were released, however, I suspect it may have had something to do with the Earth orbiting the sun over 90 times since he was born. I guess we'll have to wait to be sure."

Are you saying that his death was caused by centrifugal force of the earch circling the sun? What a ghastly way to die.

Re:Couldn't handle the stress? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233183)

Thank you. The cause of his death is likely correlated with the number of orbits around the sun, but unlikely to be caused by them.

Re:Couldn't handle the stress? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233523)

Are you saying that his death was caused by centrifugal force of the earch circling the sun? What a ghastly way to die.

Of course not.

It was the centripetal force that killed him.

Re:Couldn't handle the stress? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233609)

That's pretty funny. Waiting for a pedant to show up and explain that you meant "centripetal".

Farewell, good sir (2)

BRSQUIRRL (69271) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233043)

While a little overlooked (and dated, to be fair) now, The Martian Chronicles were one of the first sci-fi works I read as a kid and were a big part of making me a fan of the genre. Like all of his works, they were simultaneously beautiful and sad.

Farewell, good sir; you put humanity under the microscope with your writing and, whether we liked what we saw or not, we needed to see it.

Ray (1)

msheekhah (903443) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233049)

Having been an avid scifi fan since 5th grade, Ray Bradbury was up there with my favorites of Heinlein, Herbert, and Asimov. Everytime I hear "Major Tom", I think of a short story by Ray Bradbury.

I'd post anonymously, too... (0)

El Royo (907295) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233055)

If I had penned this gem: "Author of dystopian novel about the logical conclusion of many trends in modern society, Fahrenheit 451, and many other works that have inspired fans of speculative fiction for decades has died at the age of 91 in Los Angeles, California, Tuesday night, June 5th, 2012. " Could it have been made more torturous?

Re:I'd post anonymously, too... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233153)

If I had penned this gem: "Author of dystopian novel about the logical conclusion of many trends in modern society, Fahrenheit 451, and many other works that have inspired fans of speculative fiction for decades has died at the age of 91 in Los Angeles, California, Tuesday night, June 5th, 2012. "

Could it have been made more torturous?

"The author of several bleak, dismal stories grimly detailing the inevitable emptiness and downfall of all modern civilizations, as well as the utter futility of all you've ever loved and achieved, died today. Good riddance, the depressing bastard."

Yeah, submitting that anonymously was probably the best idea the submitter had in a while.

What really scares me. (5, Insightful)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233101)

What really bothers me about 451 is how just about everything but the book burning turned out true. If you remove that aspect from the book, you'd have a hard time separating it from the United States of today. I can't read it without being unnerved. Immersing ourselves in our electronic entertainment rather than our lives, advertisement everywhere, complete lack of empathy as a social standard, constant, ignored wars, distaste for pedestrians, rampant anti-intellectualism, near identical suburbs everywhere.

It was a brilliant extrapolation from 1953, and I wish it wasn't so close to reality.

as bricks and mortar burn (5, Interesting)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233243)

What really bothers me about 451 is how just about everything but the book burning turned out true.

WHY DO YOU THINK IT'S CALLED A KINDLE MOTHERFUCKER?!!![*] [pcworld.com]

Re:What really scares me. (1)

Noryungi (70322) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233285)

All true.
As far as the book burning is concerned, just wait a couple of generations and it will be there.

Re:What really scares me. (1)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233495)

It doesn't NEED to be there. Books are just things, and their presence doesn't really deflect the problem unless the appreciation for careful, organized thought is also there.

If people aren't interested in reading, the biggest library in the world is pointless.

Re:What really scares me. (2)

idontgno (624372) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233669)

Actually, I think Bradbury underestimated the state of things.

Books aren't even worth burning. Apparently, for a lot of people, they just don't really exist at all.

Re:What really scares me. (1)

EvilBudMan (588716) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233533)

Isn't censorship pretty much the same thing as book burning. Google searches are now censored to some extent.

private flights to space starting to come true? (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233143)

One of the more vivid images in ray's stories were the hordes of rockets fleeing Earth for new opportunities on Mars. I thought this was transposition of the settling of US West and displacement of Indians which would have still been in the living memory of Ray's grandparents when he was a child. The success of DragonX last week is private door opening [wikipedia.org] into space after half century of government monopolies.

lets sort out the conspiracy theories (0)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233169)

Okay lets see

The Shadow Government folks line up here

The Aliens Did it folks line up here

The He isn't actually Dead folks line up here

who else do we have??

Re:lets sort out the conspiracy theories (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233265)

Obviously God killed him. Or terrorists.

Re:lets sort out the conspiracy theories (1)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233481)

What if you think that the Shadow Government of Aliens is spreading the news that he's dead when he's really alive somewhere? Where do you line up then? I'm asking for, um, a friend of mine.

He was a right wing nut job, Burn him like F451 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233219)

He was a complete idiot and moron creationist and morally bankrupt right winger who thought Ron "Con Man" Reagan was the best thing since sliced bread.

They should burn his corpse on a pile of his books to send his "soul" that he believed in off to whatever Christian hell he believed in.

No doubt he was supposedly "against book burning" because otherwise his books would have been burned several minutes after his drivel was published.

Re:He was a right wing nut job, Burn him like F451 (1)

beschra (1424727) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233575)

Sorry for feeding the troll, but this is from late in Bradbury's life (age 90).

"I'm a Zen Buddhist if I would describe myself," he says. "I don't think about what I do. I do it. That's Buddhism. I jump off the cliff and build my wings on the way down."

Full article, worth the read:
http://articles.cnn.com/2010-08-02/living/Bradbury_1_ray-bradbury-dandelion-wine-sam-weller?_s=PM:LIVING [cnn.com]

Re:He was a right wing nut job, Burn him like F451 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233617)

Y'see, this is why celebrity is a terrible idea.

Because Bradbury was a genius, a master of empathy, and one of the most far-seeing writers of his century. I can't think of a more evocative piece of writing than "Dandelion Wine".

That said, you're right (if a trifle impolitic). He was a total neo-con.

I really do try to avoid personal knowledge about artists whose work I enjoy. It seldom works out well.

Veeeeenusssss! (2)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233221)

It was the transit of Venus! It was jealous that Ray gave Mars all his love, and pulled some sneaky, underhanded gravitational alignment whatsis! Damn you, Venus! Damn yoooooou!

Dinosaurs pass on (2, Insightful)

dorpus (636554) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233233)

I'm from the generation that had schoolteachers who couldn't stop talking about how great the 60s were. So, Bradbury epitomized the 60s SF writers who thought that computer technology would "oppress" us, and women in the future were supposed to behave just as submissively as 1950s women. Thanks to that strain of thought, my generation was discouraged from pursuing computer careers.

Re:Dinosaurs pass on (1)

JockTroll (996521) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233393)

Why, aren't you happey you're not a digital slave, working 24/7 for a pittance and waiting for the moment Mr Iamanindian from Bumfuckay in Lawhore gets your job outsourced to him? Because that's what IT is now. And anyway, how much of a loserboy must one be to let his career choice influenced by "strains of thought"? Say you're a sad loser and I'll believe you, but don't try to fool anyone with that psychocultural onanistic babble.

A Great Writer and Person (1)

invid (163714) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233271)

Ray Bradbury is one of the reasons I look back fondly on my childhood.

The New Yorker (4, Interesting)

milkmage (795746) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233293)

ran their first sci-fi issue this month.

Here's his piece "Inspiration for the Fire Balloons"
http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2012/06/04/120604fa_fact_bradbury [newyorker.com]

While I remained earthbound, I would time-travel, listening to the grownups, who on warm nights gathered outside on the lawns and porches to talk and reminisce. At the end of the Fourth of July, after the uncles had their cigars and philosophical discussions, and the aunts, nephews, and cousins had their ice-cream cones or lemonade, and we’d exhausted all the fireworks, it was the special time, the sad time, the time of beauty. It was the time of the fire balloons.

Which book would you memorize before it's torched? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233323)

New question I'm asking everyone: What's the book that, like a character at the end of Fahrenheit 451, you'd recite from memory?

Mine's "1984".

Re:Which book would you memorize before it's torch (1)

Sique (173459) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233599)

Mine are Solaris and The Flop, both by Stanislaw Lem.

Re:Which book would you memorize before it's torch (2)

dr_dank (472072) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233651)

Given the limits and frailties of the human memory, he could have written a follow-up about the mangled misremembered books:

A Tale of Two Cities - Christopher Dickins look at Minneapolis and st Paul.

Moby Dick - Herman Mullers classic tale of Captain Arabs search for the perfect tuna salad sandwich.

Macbeth - The story of the first girl to own an Apple Macintosh.

Next steps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233333)

One assumes that he has asked to be cremated?

Mr. Bradbury, may you have peace... (2)

wannabegeek2 (1137333) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233379)

I owe Mr. Bradbury and his golden age of science fiction brethern a great deal. It was his writing and that of Wells, Verne, Assimov and others which pulled me up from a path of near illiteracy to being an avid reader.

If there is an after life, I hope Bradbury, Verne, Clark and all the others have already started writing for the inhabitants. They'll be better off for it.

Prescient (5, Interesting)

cthlptlk (210435) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233407)

I just looked at a few wikipedia pages and saw this thing that he wrote about a transistor radio in the 1950s. It is exactly the way you might describe someone talking on a cell phone if you walked outside your door right now:

In writing the short novel Fahrenheit 451 I thought I was describing a world that might evolve in four or five decades. But only a few weeks ago, in Beverly Hills one night, a husband and wife passed me, walking their dog. I stood staring after them, absolutely stunned. The woman held in one hand a small cigarette-package-sized radio, its antenna quivering. From this sprang tiny copper wires which ended in a dainty cone plugged into her right ear. There she was, oblivious to man and dog, listening to far winds and whispers and soap-opera cries, sleep-walking, helped up and down curbs by a husband who might just as well not have been there. This was not fiction.

No, he didn't predict cell phones or anything like that, but he recognized one of the first victims of the epidemic that went on to swallow us all.

so? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233413)

so what? another carbon-based unit is returned to the environment

Rest in Peace (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40233435)

Rest in peace Mr. Bradbury. Your work introduced me to the wonders of literary scifi, and the world has never been the same since.

Government finally got him (1)

cod3r_ (2031620) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233467)

Next they will burn all copies of his books. It's a conspiracy!!!

Oblig. Simpsons quote (2)

uncle slacky (1125953) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233517)

"I'm aware of his work."

Speculation at its best (1)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233537)

No details on how he died were released, but I suspect it may have had something to do with the Earth orbiting the sun over 90 times since he was born.

For that matter, he could have been the one letting the earth orbit the sun all this time. I guess we will be waiting with bated breath to know if it is possible for the earth to orbit the sun without him.

I saw him speak in California in May, 1982 (2)

talexb (223672) | more than 2 years ago | (#40233699)

I happened to be touring a university campus (UCLA? Berkeley?) and saw a poster for a talk he was giving, and bought a ticket on a whim. He was a fascinating speaker, and it was intriguing to hear him re-engineer and expand on Fahrenheit 451. What a treat. Afterwards, he gladly stayed behind and autographed books for quite a while.

I also remember something about him being arrested in Paris, France for being 'drunk and in charge of a bicycle'. What's not to like?

RIP.

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