not a beautiful or unique snowflake (nothings) wrote,
not a beautiful or unique snowflake

This is a one-note joke.

If you haven't read the original story, you should really read that instead.


by Terry Baskin Robbins

"They're made out of ice cream."

"Ice cream?"

"Ice cream. They're made out of ice cream."

"Ice cream?"

"There's no doubt about it. We picked up several from different parts of the planet, took them aboard our recon vessels, and probed them all the way through. They're completely ice cream."

"That's impossible. What about the radio signals? The messages to the stars?"

"They use the radio waves to talk, but the signals don't come from them. The signals come from machines."

"So who made the machines? That's who we want to contact."

"They made the machines. That's what I'm trying to tell you. Ice cream made the machines."

"That's ridiculous. How can ice cream make a machine? You're asking me to believe in sentient ice cream."

"I'm not asking you, I'm telling you. These creatures are the only sentient race in that sector and they're made out of ice cream."

"Maybe they're like the orfolei. You know, a carbon-based intelligence that goes through an ice cream stage."

"Nope. They're born ice cream and they die ice cream. We studied them for several of their life spans, which didn't take long. Do you have any idea what's the life span of ice cream?"

"Spare me. Okay, maybe they're only part ice cream. You know, like the weddilei. An ice cream head with an electron plasma brain inside."

"Nope. We thought of that, since they do have ice cream heads, like the weddilei. But I told you, we probed them. They're ice cream all the way through."

"No brain?"

"Oh, there's a brain all right. It's just that the brain is made out of ice cream! That's what I've been trying to tell you."

"So ... what does the thinking?"

"You're not understanding, are you? You're refusing to deal with what I'm telling you. The brain does the thinking. The ice cream."

"Thinking ice cream! You're asking me to believe in thinking ice cream!"

"Yes, thinking ice cream! Conscious ice cream! Loving ice cream. Dreaming ice cream. The ice cream is the whole deal! Are you beginning to get the picture or do I have to start all over?"

"Omigod. You're serious then. They're made out of ice cream."

"Thank you. Finally. Yes. They are indeed made out of ice cream. And they've been trying to get in touch with us for almost a hundred of their years."

"Omigod. So what does this ice cream have in mind?"

"First it wants to talk to us. Then I imagine it wants to explore the Universe, contact other sentiences, swap ideas and information. The usual."

"We're supposed to talk to ice cream."

"That's the idea. That's the message they're sending out by radio. 'Hello. Anyone out there. Anybody home.' That sort of thing."

"They actually do talk, then. They use words, ideas, concepts?"

"Oh, yes. Except they do it with ice cream."

"I thought you just told me they used radio."

"They do, but what do you think is on the radio? Ice cream sounds. You know how when you slap or flap ice cream, it makes a noise? They talk by flapping their ice cream at each other. They can even sing by squirting air through their ice cream."

"Omigod. Singing ice cream. This is altogether too much. So what do you advise?"

"Officially or unofficially?"


"Officially, we are required to contact, welcome and log in any and all sentient races or multibeings in this quadrant of the Universe, without prejudice, fear or favor. Unofficially, I advise that we erase the records and forget the whole thing."

"I was hoping you would say that."

"It seems harsh, but there is a limit. Do we really want to make contact with ice cream?"

"I agree one hundred percent. What's there to say? 'Hello, ice cream. How's it going?' But will this work? How many planets are we dealing with here?"

"Just one. They can travel to other planets in special ice cream containers, but they can't live on them. And being ice cream, they can only travel through C space. Which limits them to the speed of light and makes the possibility of their ever making contact pretty slim. Infinitesimal, in fact."

"So we just pretend there's no one home in the Universe."

"That's it."

"Cruel. But you said it yourself, who wants to meet ice cream? And the ones who have been aboard our vessels, the ones you probed? You're sure they won't remember?"

"They'll be considered crackpots if they do. We went into their heads and smoothed out their ice cream so that we're just a dream to them."

"A dream to ice cream! How strangely appropriate, that we should be ice cream's dream."

"And we marked the entire sector unoccupied."

"Good. Agreed, officially and unofficially. Case closed. Any others? Anyone interesting on that side of the galaxy?"

"Yes, a rather shy but sweet hydrogen core cluster intelligence in a class nine star in G445 zone. Was in contact two galactic rotations ago, wants to be friendly again."

"They always come around."

"And why not? Imagine how unbearably, how unutterably cold the Universe would be if one were all alone ..."

the end

A trivial search-and-replace on the original story. It has the advantage (for me) that it's easier to hear this new meat as something foreign, to better get inside the speakers' heads. (Or maybe the original worked for me the first time I read it but repeated exposure has me too easily reading "through" the language now.)
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