The story was printed in an anthology paper magazine, maybe Asimov's Science Fiction (similar to Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine short stories). It would have been printed some time between 1976 and 1985.

It dealt with a society that needed to kill everyone over 30. The phrase was "hop for pop," as they headed off to the place where they were to be killed; I think it was also the title.

  • 5
    Obvious Logan's Run vibes here (moreso the film than the novel, in respect to the age limit). That's not a short story, though. Jul 9, 2023 at 0:27

1 Answer 1


Some of the details differ, but this sounds a lot like Jamboree by Jack Williamson, a short story first published in 1969 in Galaxy.

The story seems to describe the adventure of a Boy Scout troop, happily heading off for the annual jamboree. As the story unfolds, however, it becomes more and more sinister. The troop is actually led by a robot called"Pop", and the scouts are repeatedly urged to "Hop for Pop!". The actual purpose of the Jamboree is for the oldest scouts to be broken down, and their cellular matter used to produce the next generation of children, by another machine called "Mother". Rather than happening at an age of 30 years though, this happens when the scouts are about 11.

The story is available from the Luminist Archive.

  • 2
    Available as part of an anthology. (Not sure about copyright there.) Jul 9, 2023 at 1:02
  • 9
    The 30 years could be a mix-up with the movie Logan's Run, where citizens are killed at 30. Jul 9, 2023 at 11:05
  • Sounds like a mix-up with Logan's Run.
    – Tom
    Jul 9, 2023 at 13:46
  • The anthology is "Those Who Can" edited by Robin Scott Wilson ISBN 9780312141394 Jul 11, 2023 at 5:11

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.