Snow Crash Chapter Thumbnails

This page is a quick trip through Neal Stephenson's novel "Snow Crash" and is offered solely for the benefit of those who've read it but can't recall specifics. (If you haven't read the book please read it . My scribblings do the full narrative no justice whatsoever.)

• = double-spaced sub-chapter


1. Deliverator - mafia - pizza shop fire - 20:00

2. Cutting through burbclaves - pooned by a Kourier - empty pool - Kourier takes over

3. Hiro & Vitaly Chernobyl - U-Stor-It – uploads to CIC - his lens-topped computer - The Street

4. Smartwheels - pooning a bimbo box, then shaking it loose - DELIVERED

5. Avatars, Ports, Brandys & Clints • Animercials - Job offer - On the street - Black Sun VIP • Snow crash - hypercard

6. MetaCops - YT is loogied, then busted •  Clink

7. Black Sun – Dæmons - BigBoard • Juanita, college buddy – Army brats – They reconnect & last a couple years, then she marries & divorces Da5id

8. The Vapor of Nuance – Bazooka screenplay nugget – Bigboarding the room again – L Bob Rife – Juanita gives Hiro a hypercard

9. …a very potent hypercard • Da5id tries snow crash: meh – Sushi K’s radiant avatar – Da5id really crashes and gorillas fling his glitching avatar out and over the horizon

10. YT in the clink, calls her BF (busy) then Hiro • They form a plan – Hookah boys chase Hiro – YT steals a taxi – Mr Lee’s - scanned

11. No. 863 picks a sword fight with No.1

12. Nice doggies – all the neighborhood dogs are a single integrated guard dog – bad people have arrived quickly, with loaded weapons! • Rat Thing confiscates all the weapons in a flash – YT kinda likes Hiro – “We should work together” – Jeeks lob grenades at them – Rat Thing is having spasms – YT approaches to help it, sees its bizarre structure in detail – It’s overheating, hurt, and bleeding – YT drags it back into its dog house – Mr Lee’s Welcome Poster • Mafia car lurks – they agree to work 50/50 – YT poons to McD’s, changes & walks home – Mom’s exhausted from her oppressive govt. job

13. Meta-corpse (no good way to handle the aftermath) – Graveyard Daemons • Vitaly & The Meltdowns, concert prep – Vanagon – Earth globe appears – Hiro gets to know the Librarian, searching for all things Rife – Juanita’s Infocalypse continues revealing its value

14.  Hiro views Rife’s life history (giving zillions to Bedford, owning an aircraft carrier, aquiring the world’s fiber-optic networks) • LRB’s big-brother-ish PR “headache” - he owns the Metaverse & the street • The Raft - contentious interviewer, Babble Brigade • Approaching the concert overpass

15. Blunt Force Trauma opens show – Enforcers running security, Crips make a show • Laser scanned by Lagos who’s looking for Raven – Lagos warns Hiro of the nam-shub • Raven arrives on a sidecar-cycle – Lagos scans Raven – Hiro warns YT about Raven, but she blows him off

16. Raven delivers briefcase to Crips • In Sushi K's limo they watch Eye Spy – Squeaky the Enforcer - Sushi K's lyrics - Lagos has been more or less field dressed

17. Young Jason Breckinridge takes a job with a mafia franchise, Nova Sicilia • He’s assigned a plum priority delivery, to Compton

18. Jason makes the delivery personally, unfortunately.

19. Hop field fight, in pursuit of Raven - Raven knifes T-Bone

20. T-Bone’s suitcase stash self-destructs - Raven has a nuke in his sidecar

21. YT poons to Compton • Enzo’s grateful for YT saving the delivery back in chapter 4, gifts her his Vietnam dog tags

22. Enzo’s guy has a delivery for her • YT "Hoover-poons” up the 405 – much discussion of Feds

23. YT heads into Griffith Park toward babble gang, gets briefcase – heading back she’s intercepted by Jason & glass eye guy - mafia trailer

24. Rebar Katana workout – quick shower - chopper to hospital - Da5id catatonic – chopper to Da5id's house - snow crash

25. YT exits gridlocked van - arrives at Rev. Wayne's Pearly Gates, waits while previous customer checks out – Rev Thorpe yanks case from YT, snorts a vial from the case

26. Black Sun back room with Juanita, she’s explaining how Da5id was snow-crashed (“Hackers can visually read binary whether they think so or not”) - Is nam-shub a religion, virus, or drug? What’s the difference? • A clint tries to snow crash Hiro – Hiro tells a daemon to leave the Clint’s amputated scroll in Hiro’s office

27. YT chases the Clint (having just completed Rev. Wayne delivery) - Hiro asks LIBRARIAN about glossolalia; Pentecost; Pharisees, Sadducees, Essenes; Sumerian language - clint disembarks at Port 127 – YT discovers LBR’s 20-mile cube

28. Hiro and Librarian enter another room; three artifacts (Clay envelope, Hammurabi, and Asherah) & 10,000 hyper cards; Rife digging at Enki; Egypt vs. Sumer; Nam-shub of Enki (it’s a Babel story); Lagos’s theory; a scribe’s strongly worded letter to Enki

29. YT jacks into the Street via a crappy truck stop terminal * Visits Ng in Metaverse Vietnam – Ng has speech issues…? – Ng is physically driving his “wheelchair” to pick up YT, gives her her next job

30. Hiro asks the Librarian about Asherah, biblical connections, Adam & Eve story retooled –

31. Ng blasts into Terminal Island Sacrifice Zone (Long Beach, CA) – Ng navigates via drug sensor – YT gears up & goes out to investigate – testosterone – Getting freon • “When you get the drugs, fling them straight up in the air”

32. YT bickers with dealers at warehouse, make the deal, flings it up; Ng appears, Rat Things attack; chopper (de)caps a sniper • Mission accomplished, unblemished snow crash sample obtained - “Maybe Fido is a Rat Thing” - Yep, Fido is a Rat Thing

33. YT tells HP about Ng getting SC for mafia – HP dives back into his Asherah & Sumerian studies – Akkadians retool Sumerian myths (Nursing at Asherah’s teat spreads virus) - Asherah & Enki in Dilmun – Enki spills his “water of the heart,” sowing it multi-generationally – Enki eats plants (a binary existence from a singular creator) - Enki & Asherah defeated chaos - (Is there anything that DOESN’T drive this guy to jerk off??) - The Me – Inanna = societal OS - “You sound like Lagos”

34. YT skates down into Griffith Park, scoping the camp out in the optical *and* infrared - chats with a wasted hacker • She’s from Rife’s raft...snow-crashed and in the cult – High priest watches, his associate has a syringe of blood – YT Liquid Knuckles them • Hiro's a gargoyle, confirms to YT that people get snow crash from screens – YT zooms home & trashes mom’s government computer

35. Enterprise and Core are currently off the Oregon coast • Hiro’s new bike, complete with BIOS & the works!

36. Enshrouded/Enfogged Raft (it looks bigger than it is) heads south down OR & CA coasts, [presumably riding the North Pacific Gyre?] Every 5 years when the raft passes by here, 25,000 head for CA’s shores • Kabbalist theurgic sorcerers – Eye writing – Relativists vs Universalists – Lagos's PROM analogy – Why no English nam-shubs? - Machine language analogy – Maybe Sumerian words simply work differently

37. YT's mom's soul-crushing Fed job – new toilet paper regulations (Bathroom Tissue Distribution Units) - Time for a ....

38. ...soul-crushing piss-and-hyperintrusive-polygraph test, mostly about YT

39. Winnebago armada, pseudo-podding north up the Alcan – To eastern Oregon Snooze & Cruise to get Wrightson’s angle on LBR’s world domination and how Raven got a Russian nuke (HINT: glass knives)

40. Rednecks come after Hiro, who decapitates one – they shoot him in the back (body armor!) - Hiro katanas his way out of the inflatable dome

41. YT makes a delivery to Fed building – Dense gauntlet at security – It's a trap, but she’s activated her gear – She's blasting her way out, but there are a million cops – Blasts out the revolving door and is promptly stun bunnied

42. Hiro, at Port Sheridan, OR – Inanna...”Enki fished Inanna out of Hell” (Hiro takes this as a sign to get Juanita from the Raft) • If the Raft is close off the coast, the “high priests” must be nearby on land...

43. YT taped up in the back of a van for 8 hours – then sedated, then not really stripped but almost – Bonnie & Marla attend to her. They all get on this crowded seatless carpeted cult van...for two days. Speaking in tongues with cult kids, pit-stops at eerily empty suburban houses – then the van is on a ferry headed to sea - now she's cutting fish on a ship ship, then she’s shoveling slop in a sweaty chow line – Antenna heads

44. Hiro in Port Sheridan, his fancy-ass bike dies in its tracks. Evac-helicopter is dropping flares - but not quite enough, missile hit chopper – HP wants to rent Kowloon, dealer is wary – Soldiers all around – onto the pier – Kodiak Queen – Kowloon – Spectrum 2000 shootout free-for-all

45. Hiro boards Kowloon - talks virus with glass eye guy [Fisheye] - Kowloon heads into fjord towing a severed pier covered with a bunch of Russian upper management

46. Sub rescues Orthos (Russian orthodox), then destroys Kowloon

47. Raven saves YT from a life of drudgery in the Enterprise kitchen - YT kinda digs Dmitri Ravinoff – They chat while boat-hopping across the Raft

48. Four In A Life Raft: Hiro, Vic, Chung, Fisheye, which latter has a huge suitcase thing which itself has a long hose which in turn has a red-hot, high-surface-area end-appliance which stays overboard, boiling the ocean (a radio-thermal isotope device which remains awkwardly undiscussed) – Fisheye reads the device’s manual while grumbling about getting YT back: Enzo is VERY pissed at L Bob Rife • Nothing better to do, Hiro hacks the Metaverse; it’s lethal now and fixing that won’t be easy...but for now it’s easier for hackers • Starts working on the Snow Crash scroll [amputated from the hapless Clint back at the end of chapter 26] in 2D - creates SnowScan “virus protection” – Invisible Avatars: Hiro writes one and writes a transportation alternative: a new motorcycle (which he practices riding on his CPU)

49. Life raft encounters Rife Raft pirate “Bruce Lee” trawler, and accompanying motor yacht – Fisheye wants to bait them with nude men, appoints himself president and forces Eliot & Hiro to strip – "Bruce Lee’s” leader appears, offers to trade missiles and other hardware for Eliot’s & Hiro’s warm moist orifices – the whole crew of the Bruce Lee begins babbling, then suddenly each one bursts into blood blobs, right where they stand; Fisheye has sprayed them with Reason, his suitcase’s hypervelocity gatling rail-gun; He sprays the yacht as well and both craft are shredded • One survivor; Eliot & Hiro repair the yacht while discussing the crew’s pre-mortem babble. Eliot: “It’s a Raft thing.” - Not enough fuel to make it to shore so, TO THE RAFT! ...for fuel, YT & Juanita.

50. Raven takes YT to a restaurant boat, tells her how his people (Aleutians) have been fucked over by just about everyone throughout history (Russians, Japanese, Americans; He got blind drunk and fell overboard once, days later washed ashore near a Russian Orthodox church, is how he came to be with the Russians.)

51. Four Guys On A Yacht, battling many waves of pirates – Alas, Fisheye – Battling Raven – Filipino boy will be Hiro’s guide

52. Love scene, more or less – Now what am I forgetting....gosh it’s on the tip of my....

53. Tranny takes Hiro to his 'hood – Those head antennae are implants!) Hiro grabs Reason – No motor, they must row – Tranny's family welcomes Hiro warmly.

54. YT finds a terminal and jacks into Metaverse

55. Hiro drags Reason to the houseboat, jacks in from Trannyville and tries to debug it – goes to Mr Ng’s and deals with adaptive CS daemons – Hiro tells Ng about Fisheye – Uncle Enzo appears, as does Mr Lee. The four of them powwow – Enzo pays Hiro

56. Hiro continues with Enzo, Mr Lee & Ng, offering a HUGE infodump re Sumer, Asherah, glossolalia, Rife.

57. Infodump continues: more xenoglossia on the Raft - it came from outer space – if we could get Enki’s nam-shub from the clay envelope... - we’ll need to move fast, Rife will send the refugees after us

58. YT & Hiro chat – YT is worried about Raven killing her - Trannyville attacked by core – the salvage trawler is sinking and pulling pontoons down with it – Enyerprise is gunning for Hiro now – in the metaverse HP tells YT to chopper (motorcycle) him home – Ducks a strung wire – YT has Hiro back in his m-verse office

59. Hiro attacks Enterprise's deck guns with Reason - breaches Enterprise's hull, uses Librarian’s blueprints to spot targets within the ship

60. YT is grabbed and dragged across several raft boats while medics rush in to tend to Raven – She's lifted from an oil tanker and dropped on the Enterprise, boards Rife's chopper – President climbs aboard – Hiro attacks, YT kicks clay tablet out for Hiro

61. Hiro sees broken tablet – jumped by wire-heads until Juanita nam-shubs them – Juanita's jacked immune system - Tablet - broadcasting nam-shub

62. YT is choppered across the ocean – Raven’s RARE copter pulls alongside

63. Hiro goes to Rife's Metaverse cube, his katana pierces it, he follows the blade into the cube – inside it’s just basic geometric shapes, but each one is a model representing one of Rife’s systems – One of the shapes represents government systems – Hiro & Juanita see Raven preparing

64. Hiro vs Raven, on cycles, at 50,000 mph

65. All Rife’s networks are down, Chopper puts down so Rife's can make a pay-phone call - Kourier dude see them mistreating YT, calls a code • Fido The Rat Thing hears YT & remembers – breaks Mach One going to help

66. As they scream through metaspace, Hiro tells Raven of his (Hiro’s) dad – Raven knows the story as Hiro is telling it because their fathers were on opposite sides of the same story. (Both had escaped the Japanese and been recaptured. They were both about to be executed when Fat Man detonated over Nagasaki.) Hiro & Raven slalom

67. The Kouriers poon Rife's chopper – YT jumps out – Kouriers pull chopper down, YT uses a poon cable to tangle the chopper blades

68. Hiro & Raven slice each others’ avatars up - Amphitheater showdown, hackers roar with approval – Light show - Security ad

69. Enzo digs in at LAX – Rife’s pilots switch teams and now work for Enzo – Enzo forces LAX to close – Enzo is having personnel problems, give good advice to an underperformer – Enzo exits the copter

70. Enzo on the tarmac, has knife fight with Raven – Enzo hits Raven with a skateboard’s Shock Wave Projector

71. Rat Thing "apprehends" Rife (strongly evoking the ending of Die Hard 2).

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created: 22FEB05
major overhaul after 2nd read: 27OCT22