—We Also Walk Dogs
|Author||Robert A. Heinlein|
|Genre||Short Story, Science Fiction|
"—We Also Walk Dogs" is a science fiction short story by Robert A. Heinlein. One of his Future History stories, it was first published in Astounding Science Fiction (July 1941 as by Anson MacDonald) and collected in The Green Hills of Earth (and subsequently The Past Through Tomorrow).
'General Services' is a very successful company that provides various personal services such as shopping for you or walking your dogs or supplying a host for a party, but also proudly advertises that no job is too large (One ad campaign idea the staff discusses: "Want somebody murdered? Then DON'T call General Services. But for anything else, call.... It Pays!"), is asked to do the impossible: enable an interplanetary conference to be held on Earth, whose strong gravity is inhospitable to many of the native races of other planets in the solar system.
Much of the action of the story is not, as one might expect, about the science or engineering of creating an antigravity device to allow the conference to take place, but about how to persuade the world’s leading physicist to undertake the job. It turns out he is fond of a museum piece, a porcelain bowl called "The Flower of Forgetfulness," which humanizes all the participants.
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