Wednesday, 30 October 2013

S. Is Out There

So do you have the book yet ? From what I have read about it everyone is a little confused and delighted at the same time.

My copy has not arrived yet and I can't get one from a store so I will have to rely on all of you for information.

Before getting on to the book, you may wonder why there is a picture of a magpie or, as we learned from the Radio Straka broadcasts, a Straka, on this post.

Well today @RadioStraka was back and posted this picture. Then The Guardian website also posted a picture of the bird in question.

Does this mean that we will get other real world clues or signs ? To paraphrase Radio Staka, Who can say, yes who can say.

Back to the book we don't want to openly post solutions to every mystery right away, especially as we don't know the answers to a lot of them and I suspect we don't even know some of the questions yet. If you want to discuss the book and it's contents please head on over to the discussion post, by clicking the tab at the top of this site or clicking here.

First lets start off gently and list the items that come inserted into the book, not in detail, but just to give a flavor of what you will see. List courtesy of Tess315

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Radio Straka - Transmission Five

The fifth transmission from Radio Straka has begun.

Today's broadcast is discussing terrorism and political activism.

@RadioStraka has today changed his name to Bullfinch, which as you may recall was a theme on Transmission 3 (Phyrrula Phyrrula)

Lieutenant Giulio Gavotti, Libya 1911

Transcript of show 5 29.10.13 follows -

S. Discussion

We have created a new permanent page to the blog for general discussion of S.

If you have the book and want to talk to others then click the discussion page tab (above) or click here to go to the page.

Please note that as you are discussing the book, there may be spoilers !

You could be dining with Doug Dorst and J J Abrams

A short while ago Doug Dorst (@DougDorst) sent these messages

The information and entry form is also on the Mulholland Books website

This is not run by us we are just sharing the information, so good luck and happy hunting.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Radio Straka - Transmission Four

The fourth broadcast from Radio Straka has begun.

The initial subject appears to be Hermes and this picture was tweeted by @RadioStraka shortly after the broadcast begun.

More updates when we can and a transcription of the broadcast as fast as we can type.

These second two pictures are of Theseus and Ariadne and then Theseus slaying the Minotaur.

Now there is talk of the African Anansi spider god, and we have had some spider music which is actually quite creepy.

The overriding theme of todays transmission seems to be mythology across cultures.

There appeared to be a glitch with the live show today, however the fourth broadcast is already up on

Radio Straka Show 4 28.10.13

Analysing the Transmissions

I intend to try and take a look at the Radio Straka transmissions and try and pull out the relevant facts.

What is relevant may be a difficult thing to ascertain, but lets hope we can find something together.

First of all I want to list all of the references to The Ship Of Theseus book, and collect all page numbers / mentions, I will also list other books written by V M Straka, then I want to list some of the recurring items / numbers, also I will outline the basic subjects of each transmission, and finally anything else of note that doesn't fit into those categories.

If you think something else is significant or something is incorrect please let us know in the comments.

A Glance Inside S.

@TK10815 and @0bFuSc8 let us know via Twitter that the Guardian UK website had posted a short video.

The video is a brief look at an actual copy of the book and the contents, including the written notes and the many inserts that will bring the story to life.

Head on over to to see the video.

There is also a New York Times article that reviews the contents in more detail.

It does include this piece of information - "There will be a digital e-book and related materials scattered online for obsessive fans, but to get the full 3-D sensory experience, Mr. Abrams recommends the hardback. "

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Radio Straka - Transmission 3

Today's broadcast considers Sao Paulo in Brazil at the time when Straka was writing there.

We have had some contact with Radio Straka and this was their message to us at the start of the transmission.

We hear very early on a variation on a phrase that we have heard before "What begins at the water, ends there."

There is some information about Cacareco a a Rhino that was elected to office, and is now synonymous with a protest vote in an election.

One thing we did notice today is that @Radiostraka's given name on twitter has changed to "Phyrrula Phyrrula" which we think means Bullfinch, and given that "There is much comfort and strength to be found in birds - V.M. Straka (1949)" then it seems appropriate.

Radio Straka Show 3 27.10.13 - Transcript follows

Transmission Information

You can also visit the Mixcloud website to listen again to each transmission.

On that page is some synopsis information of the overall set of transmissions and a synopsis for each individual one -

Overall Description

Broadcast on NTS, shows from – an Homage to a towering figure of early 20th Century literature and culture.

Remote broadcasts on poignant themes from the 17th Century Atlantic trade between Bermuda and the Azores, the Tolpuddle Martyrs, Labour strikes in the early 20th Century, the life and work of photographer Herbert List, the trickster gods of classical myths, legends, and folk tales from around the world, a random potted history of Sao Paolo in 1959, conspiracy theories about the World Cup, the plight of indigenous peoples, fashion trends in footwear, and the War on Terror.

A unique, informative, and often baffling sojourn filled with rare and peculiar insights into the alternate history of the early 20th century.

Drenched in music curated by Jonny Trunk and Sean McAuliffe, from the earliest wax cylinder recordings to modern times, from all corners of the globe, the sea, space and beyond....

Transmission 1

Dancing about architecture, and radio about a photograph. Today we use the music of Canteloube, Gurdieff and traditional sea shanties to discuss the photographic work of Herbert List and its relevance to the depths of the ocean and the heights of VM Straka’s prose.

What are the tides that pull on the soul of man? How do they sound?

Soon you will know.

Transmission 2

"An introduction to Propaganda of the Deed, followed by a history of the Labour Movement and stories of the 1912 strikes in Britain, America, Australia, and France.

Music related to and influenced by Industry, Labour Movement, Miner's strikes and struggle: featuring 1930s and 1940s field recordings, Worker's Song by Dick Gaughan, and a 1942 Gracie Fields recording of The Thing-ummy-bob (That’s Gonna Win The War), Vintage European Electronica, 80s Avant-Garde Pop Jazz, Traditional Aboriginal Music, Gonwanaland, and French Library Synthersizer compositions. "

Transmission 3

A journey into Brazil in the late 1950s. Including stories about Cacareco the rhinoceros, the Sao Paolo Bienale, and various theories on the Brazilian associations of V.M. Straka, including UFO abductions, the World Cup, plight of Indigenous Amerindian peoples, and trends in contemporary fashion.

Music related to and influenced by Brazil, Africa, Birds, Football, UFO's and Fashion: Bossa, Samba, Brazilian Soul, Tribal Drumming, Jazz, Funk, Country and Blues.

Transmission 4

Our presenter weaves a quixotic narrative from myths, legends, and folk tales of tricksters from around the world: Hermes, Theseus, Anansi, Brae Rabbit, Aesop’s Fables, Sun Wukong, and Hanuman.

A musical score including movements of classical Greek, Chinese, and Indian music, interspersed with African Electronic Jazz, Afro-Blues, German experimental, and Hawaiian Classics.

Transmission 5

A considered historical view of terrorism throughout the last century with questions about State Terrorism, life on board ships in the 17th Century, and a passionate closing homage to V.M. Straka.

Music related to and influenced by War, the struggle against the capital, the IRA, British military conflict and the Sea: 50 years of music, ranging from early wax cylinder recordings, sea shanties, classical compositions, Traditional Irish/Afgahan folk, contemporary British Folk, 40's Jazz, 60's Soundtracks, and Anti-oppression African and American Soul.

We will update this post when the other transmissions are completed, but listening live to Radio Straka is definitely an experience not to be missed !

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Radio Straka - Second Transmission

The second transmission of Radio Straka started at 9am in the UK and is as before an eclectic mix of information and music.

This time the underlying theme is of workers rights and unions, but as before the theme weaves it's way through other related subjects.

@RadioStraka is on hand of course to add some extra detail, and I think any listen to the transmission should also include a read of the tweets that were happening at the same time. The first picture shown here was tweeted at around 25 minutes in and is entitled "An Idyll"

One thing that cropped up early on was alluded to after the first broadcast which said the second broadcast would be in 9 hours 19 minutes. One of the first things said in the second transmission was "This broadcast should be occurring 19 days and 19 hours after the last one" so 19 seems to be a significant number.

We also asked @RadioStraka about the eclectic music tastes and this is the reply we got back.

I am not sure if this means the answer to the songs will be on this page or whether this is another wider mystery, but I can't wait to find out.

We will get a transcript up as soon as we can, if you can help with this please get in touch, but in the meantime have a listen to the broadcast on or on

If you need something else to convince you to listen to the broadcast then how about this picture.

The next transmission is scheduled for the 27th of October (Tomorrow) at 2pm and we are assuming that is GMT as the other broadcasts have been UK time.

Now follows a Transcript of Transmission 2 - 26/10/2013

While this is a useful resource the original transmission should be listened to for the intonation and cadence of the spoken word, plus some of the music is quite funky !

Friday, 25 October 2013

Radio Straka - Transmission 1

It started with a tweet from @Bad_Robot

Radio Straka is on the air !

The broadcasts have begun, Click here to listen to them

I am going to try and get a synopsis here of what is said in the broadcast and any additional reading so bear with me while I do that.

The small amount of text on the NTSLive site says - "A series of five remote broadcasts in homage to a towering figure of 20th century literature and culture. Featuring music from the earliest wax cylinder recordings to modern times, from all corners of the globe, the sea, space and beyond. "

In the meantime why not follow a new twitter account that has been set up - @RadioStraka They may have some more answers for us and they certainly have a new website for us -

On this site you can listen to the first broadcast, and if the markings on the compass are anything to go by there will be 4 more, the final one being on the 29th of October the date of the book launch.

If you scroll to the bottom of this new site you will see this helpful (?) hint

This has a HTML link associated with it and this takes you to the Soon You Will Know website.


The transcript appears below and now includes a few photographs referenced in the transmission, and while it is a good resource to use the original transmission should be listened to for the intonation and cadence of what is being said.