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Bad Birch

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    Bad Birch got a reaction from Utherix in Machine Spirits   
    Speaking of "Britishness", Has anyone encountered Sir David Attenbrough's earlier anthropological work, specifically where he talks about encountering the so called "cargo cults" in the 50's? Basically these were people who were relatively untouched by the (then) modern world on isolated pacific islands. With the coming of ww2, these islands often had strategic importance as way stations for the various American forces who would use them as bases of operations. The cargo would come in by air and by sea, and to a stone age mind and lacking a better explanation, this appeared to be magic! Long after the war, when Attenbrough visited, the locals still kept the airfields clear, even building approximations of communications posts and sporting comical coconuts attached to the ears to look like headphones, all in a vain ritual to encourage the cargo to return. They had even deified actual members of the original garrison! This kind of misunderstanding gave me a kind of idea what kind of rituals the various tech adepts etc. undertake in order to keep the ancient machines working, never knowing the real significance to what they are doing! Mind you, we all know that feeling...
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