Thursday, February 06, 2014

365 Days of KirbyTech, Day 37: Reed Richards' Iconometric-Frammistat

It occurs to me I need to have a sub-section of KirbyTech designated Things for Ben Grimm to Lug Around, just so we can cover the class of mechanical and electronic objects that are really big, really heavy, and serve no true story purpose except that they are Things for Ben Grimm to Lug Around. For example: Reed Richards' Iconometric-Frammistat!

Panel from Fantastic Four (1961 series) #45 (December 1965), script by Stan Lee, pencils by Jack Kirby, inks by Joe Sinnott, letters by Artie Simek

The Iconometric-Frammistat! We don't know what it does, do we? We get no clue from context: it's not being used in the story, simply cleared out to make room for Dragon Man (not to be confused with the television show Make Room for Daddy, although upon seeing each, Danny Thomas is known to have done a spit-take).Well, an iconometer can measure the distance at which something is if you know its size (or the size of it if you know its distance) through use of a measured lens or lenses. Iconometry is the art of doing this measuring-type stuff, and an iconometric object is one that does such measuring. A framistat (note the difference in spelling) is a nonsense word meaning "doohickey," "thingamajig," or "whatchamacallit." The variation "frammistat" seems rather lax of Reed, who generally gives his devices a double-barreled name that pins down its purpose squarely, but let's allow him this one, okay? So, a device for measuring distances or sizes: quite possible either galactic or microscopic, considering the scale of the machine. And Reed's warning not to shake it? Quite possibly a confirmation that there are lenses within it that need to be handled gently.

So there you go: the Iconometric-Frammistat! And it's a thing for Ben Grimm to lug around, too!


Suzanne de Nimes (suedenim) said...

I think Reed's nomenclature provides the answer. Simply being a Thing for Ben Grimm to Lug Around *is* the Iconometric-Frammistat's sole function!

Evidently, Reed sometimes needs Ben to stop bugging him or distracting him while he needs to concentrate and Do Science.

Therefore, Reed makes sure there's always a TfBGtLA close at hand, so he can keep Ben busy for 10 minutes while he finishes his work.

Jon Jermey said...

Isaac Asimov uses the term 'pocket frannistan' in one of his books for the all-purpose device which just happens to be able to save the hero when he faces Certain Death. I guess they need a really big one for the FF.