A Transmissible Matter can be found in




ISFDB.org Magazine Entry



Science Fiction Quarterly

February 1954

A TRANSMISSIBLE MATTER

An SFQ "First"

by Ray Earl Schmidt

Theoretically, a machine may be infallible; but human
beings aren't, even in theory. So, were matter-transmitters
of the type described by our new author, to
come into being, we might see an occasional error at
the non-mechanical end—one, perhaps, with as
hilarious results as in the present story.

NEWS-ITEM appearing in the San Francisco Daily Messenger: Luna, July S/TMT— Warrant Officer Joseph Small chief operator at the Luna mattertransmitter relayingstation, was severely shaken up during a baseball game today. The Rock Rabbitts, a team of local miners and prospectors, tangled with the team from GHQ in the shade of Old Smoky. At the top of the fifth inning, Klein, the leadoff batter for the Rock Rabbits, belted a drive into deep right field. Small, playing nearly a third of a mile from home base, slipped his binoculars into his spacesuit pocket as the ball approached. He turned to his left and made a powerful running leap, intercepting the ball in fine style some twenty feet above the ground. Unfortunately, the leap carried him out over a minor crater at the limit of the field. He landed, dazed but unhurt, thirty feet below the surface. Hurriedly he tried to peg the ball out, but it struck the rim, causing an avalanche. He regained consciousness in the hospital half an hour after his rescue.

Small was charged with an error on the play, and Klein was robbed of a home run, being allowed only three bases on any ball coming to rest in a crater. (See the Sports Page for a summary of Lunar baseball ground rules.) GHQ was leading 6-4 when the game was called in the seventh inning on account of sunlight.

Small is expected to resume his duties within a week.

VENUSGRAM

TO: Small
  Relay Station
  Luna
FROM: Mallory
   Communications
   GTHQ Venus
   July 9/TMT
Subject: Shipment X1S23SNP
   (Standard)
   Consigned to
   Frontier Hospital
   N/W Sector Venus

Frontier Hospital insists that the above-described is the wrong shipment. X1S23SNP (non-perishable) contained a large amount of laboratory glassware, other scientific-apparatus, and an incredible number of music-spools. The Hospital's consignment should have had the PLSA (perishable life, suspended animation) suffix, insofar as they were expecting Dr. Carole Anne Kent, famed microbiologist. She was supposed to take charge of the forces combatting the plague of Venii fever, which rages unchecked.

The Hospital, having adequate laboratory-equipment and no need for the music-spools, is holding the shipment, pending notification of its proper destination.

Concern is expressed over the safety and whereabouts of Dr. Kent. She must be revived within 30 hours after the inception of suspended animation, and we received Advance Notice of Transmission regarding her some twenty hours ago. Spare no effort in locating her. This is an emergency!

MARSGRAM

TO: Small
  Relay Station
  Luna
FROM: Kane
   Communications
   GTHQ MARS
SUBJECT: Shipment X15234PLSA
   (Standard)
   Consigned to
   Professor Reginald
   Atterbury
   Northern Sector
   MARS

The above-described shipment, relayed through you, has been delivered by freight-copter to Atterbury, who is studying Martian life-forms at the edge of the Northern Ice Cap. This consignment was supposed to contain a quantity of scientific apparatus and recorded music.

By the time the copter had returned to GTHQ, Atterbury was on. the radio complaining about what seems to me to be the best of good luck. The shipment contained a woman in suspended animation. Her maximum time in SA had almost elapsed, so the Professor revived her as per enclosed instructions. It seems that she is supposed to be on Venus, seeking out an antibiotic to combat 'kill-em-slow', the dreaded Venii fever.

We lack the necessary equipment to repackage her, or we would transmit her back to you. If an emergency arises, transmit to us the plastic chrysalis and other necessities for...

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