Life at Half-Speed
October 25, 2011 1:56 PM   Subscribe

Name that sci-fi short story I read as a child.

The facts as I remember them:

It was in a sci-fi anthology.
I read it in the early nineties but it could have been published before that.

The plot as I remember it:

Earth starts receiving transmissions from an alien race; radio, TV shows, and finally actual communications. Earth and the alien planet initiate contact and the aliens make plans to come to Earth.
Meanwhile there is a problem with the transmissions, they always seem too fast and need to be slowed down to make them comprehensible.
The aliens arrive and it turns out that they exist at a different speed to us and their spaceship, like, sinks into the ground because of the difference in speeds or something? I'm a little fuzzy on the last part.

So, can you help me?
posted by minifigs to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Oh, I totally remember that: I don't think they sink into the ground -- I think they just come and go in a flash (from the humans' perspective).

I have no idea where I read the story, though -- I will try to do some googling to see what I come up with!
posted by cider at 2:03 PM on October 25, 2011

Best answer: "Pictures Don't Lie"? (spoiler alert at that link, FYI, if it's the right story)
posted by misterbrandt at 2:28 PM on October 25, 2011 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: That's the one! Thank you!
posted by minifigs at 3:41 PM on October 25, 2011

Not the one you're looking for, but Dragon's Egg by Robert Forward explores a similar theme, with humans visiting an alien planet where the aliens' time moves much more quickly than ours.
posted by mmoncur at 8:11 PM on October 25, 2011

(FWIW, I googled [science fiction "short story" aliens sped up broadcasts], and the link was on page #2)
posted by misterbrandt at 3:29 PM on October 27, 2011

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