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Writing Date

Pub. Date





<Spring 1964

Spring 1964

The Little Black Box

Cantata 140




   There is no reception date for "The War With The Fnools" at the SMLA and it’s possible that it may have been written later in 1963 or early 1964. But it falls in this period. The story was published in Galactic Outpost #2 in Spring 1964. In 1980 it was included in THE GOLDEN MAN.

    PKD said this of "The War With The Fnools":

    Well, once again we are invaded. And, humiliatingly, by a lifeform which is absurd. My colleague Tim Powers once said that Martians could invade us simply by putting on funny hats, and we'd never notice. It's a sort of low-budget invasion. I guess we're at the point where we can be amused by the idea of Earth being invaded. (And this is when they really zap you.) {TGM Story Notes}

    In "The War With The Fnools" Terra is invaded by aliens who take on the guise of real estate salesmen, Volkswagen mechanics and the like as they try to fool supposedly unwitting humans into believing that they too are human. The problem is that the Fnools don’t understand the concept of ‘size’ and appear ridiculous as they are only one-and-a-half feet tall! But they’re still deadly, though, and must be fought. But once the protagonist gives a captured Fnool a puff on a cigarette; explaining that that is what makes humans so tall, the Fnool – in fact, all of them at once – immediately double in size to three feet tall. Disconcerted, the protagonist gives the Fnool a drink of whisky, only to see them all double in size again! The Fnools are happy with this growth in stature and are relishing the future success of their invasion as they are now indistinguishable from true humans (well, of certain types anyway). But, fortunately for mankind the Fnools soon experience sex with more surprising results.

    Drugs booze and sex: the initiatory rites to manhood for human children are paralleled in this story onto an alien race as PKD writes one of his funniest short stories. A little contrived, perhaps, but "The War With The Fnools" rates

Other magazine and Anthology appearances.         More Cover Pix here: aaaPKDickBooks.jpg (3234 bytes)

1980 THE GOLDEN MAN, Berkley, pb, 04288, 1980, ?, $2.25 (?) {Ed. Hurst}       
2000 Fnools2000.jpg (12110 bytes) KNIGHTS OF MADNESS, Ace, pb, ?, 2000, ?,? (?) {Ed. Peter Haining}  


See: THE GOLDEN MAN 'Story Notes' by Philip K. Dick

Collector’s Notes

Rudy’s Books: "The War With The Fnools" in Galaxy, Feb 1969. VG. $6

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