Saturday June 5, 2004
Book 5: The Scrapyard of Insufferable Arrogance — Part III: Handle With Care
Note: The twenty-first century human reader may be confused by the way Corporal Tbeki uses the term " in vitro," which literally means "in an artificial environment outside the organism." After all, were Tagon to discriminate in favor of the terran mammal style of reproduction, he'd be leaning towards those practicing in vivo (within the organism) fertilization and development techniques, and specifically in utero (within the uterus) although not all in vivo reproduction takes place in a so-named organ.

This is the 31st-century. Most in vivo or in utero sophonts will choose to resort to in vitro reproduction using fine products like the over-the-counter "Wombulator 3500" ("from the people who brought you the Ambulator 1650!") which not only cuts down on the personal inconvenience associated with gravidity, but also cuts down on the mess of labor and delivery (which is a good thing, since Wombulator delivery typically occurs on the kitchen counter.)


Tbeki: If we were in-vitro, term bearing creatures, you would not be so quick to fire us.
Tbeki: Our people have long been persecuted for our unusual reproduction. Do you know how few egg-laying, externally fertilizing species of sophont there are in the galaxy?
Ennesby: Three thousand, two hundred and fourteen, and that's not counting the hermaphrodites.
Tagon: It's a big galaxy, Corporal Tbeki. If I let everybody play the minority card, we'll be here all day.