View Full Version : HELP! Looking for a short story involving a the DEVILS TUNING FORK - 1995ish

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June 28th, 2012, 05:15 AM
What I remember:

A man (who's family is dead) purchases a machine which forms any metal object shape. The man wants to return the machine for some reason so figures he'll try making something impossible. He keys in a 'devil's tuning fork', which to his surprise it creates. He looks into the impossible space and see's his family. The story ends with him keying in a larger version so he can go through the space to his family.

FYI 'devil's tuning fork' = blivet, poiuyt, widget (it's on wiki under 'blivet' if you need more info)

I've been after this for years so anything anyone knows will make my day.

July 14th, 2012, 04:51 AM
I do remember some of the other stories from this book, but not as intensely as the above. Here are the details:

1. In this story people live in houses and get from place to place via walk though teleportation doors. No-one ever goes outside and the lawns and gardens are all looked after by robots. The story focuses on a boy who teleports to school and back, but he is always looking outside, wanting to explore. In the end he does get outside and sees some amazing things.

2. The other story is about how the world has been converted into a massive junkyard. No animals or plants exist, and only one man is present. He spends his time searching through all the filth, and one day he discovers a lemon seed. He is able to grow this lemon tree, which produces one lemon. He eats the lemon, but dies. The tree was grown in pure garbage, and the lemon is pure poison.

If you have any questions or ideas let me know :D

July 14th, 2012, 01:53 PM
The first story about the teleportation is one I've read too. The teleport breaks down and the boy is forced to walk to school, thus discovering 'outside'. After this he looks for excuses to go outside even after the teleport is fixed.

The lemon story and the Devils Tuning Fork one are unknown to me, so I assume I read a different story collection. :(

Jim diGriz
July 14th, 2012, 10:12 PM
The story about the boy walking outside sounds very much like Asimov's "It's Such a Beautiful Day". It was collected in "Nightfall and Other Stories" but I know that book and it doesn't have tho other stories you're looking for, it may be the one that Chuffalump remembers. It was also, apparently, collected in "Star Science Fiction Stories No.3" ed. Fred Pohl, that may be the one you're looking for.

July 15th, 2012, 04:56 AM
Yes. That's the story I was thinking of but I've been through all the synopses, for Star Science Fiction Stories No. 3, and none of the rest of the OP's memories are there. Either I've got the wrong story or there's another collection somewhere.

July 15th, 2012, 07:17 AM
Thanks both for the information. It's actually quite likely that i've mistakenly added that Asimov story to the others. I remember reading a load of my dad's science fiction books back in the day, including a fair few Asimov short story collections and I've probably mixed it up.

I will look into those collections though and see if anything crops up.