Magical Truthsaying Bastard Shadesong (shadesong) wrote,
Magical Truthsaying Bastard Shadesong

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The Geekitude of the 'song: Genesis

When I was a child, my favorite nonfiction book was Joe Kaufman's What Makes It Go? What Makes It Work? What Makes It Fly? What Makes It Float?. This was a massively oversized '70s-yellow hardcover. And it was full - full! - of cross-sections of, well, everything. Everything a wee tiny 'song could think of, anyway, and some things I hadn't. Cars, and their component parts! Locomotives and ships and airplanes! Lunar modules! Washing machines, air conditioners, faucets, toilets, pianos, telephones, radio, microscopes, telescopes, all manner of cameras. Television. Radar. Satellites. And descriptions, on a wee tiny 'song reading level, of how - everything - worked.


I am certain that my parents bought me this book because they were sick of me asking how everything worked; I was a child with a massive case of the "why?"s. Still am, really. This may have been the best purchase they ever made. I would sit around studying this book for hours. "That's how that works? I wonder how they discovered that! Maybe I can build that..."

This led to me nearly blinding my sister with my chemistry set - it was an accident, I swear! And essentially playing Choose-Your-Own-Adventure with the World Book Encyclopedia. And dissecting animals in Science Club in fourth grade.

Yeah, I was that kid.

I've graduated from washing machines and airplanes to the human body and nanotech and astronomy. But that's where it started - a big yellow book, almost as big as I was, that showed me how things are put together...
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