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Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Space Invaders

The following is satire (doh!)

Read Dan Simmon's April message (or the cached version in case it disappears again) to get the background.

The space invader appeared abruptly in my kitchen on April 30th, 2005, 60 years to the day after Hitler offed himself. I nearly knocked the frying pan off the stove and fried her with hot oil, but managed to catch it with the potholder. Close call, but I could almost see the livid scars left from that terrible accident which had almost happened. Before I could reach down to preheat the oven to 451 degrees Fahrenheit, she announced in a husky voice that she'd come back in time to talk to me about the most probable course of future history. Being a more than occasional Fantasy/SciFi reader, but not a "dittohead" I said, "Yeah? Prove it, then."

This "Meursault", neurotic, time traveller, space invader, whoever she was- shrugged. "Why bother? Just think of this as a cautionary tale or dream or whatever. It doesn't really matter, anyway, because no matter what kind of "instant replay" or "flashforward" of your potential future I gave you, you'd just find some way of denying it or blowing it off, wouldn't you? Revelations are so passe these days, unlike in olden times." I nodded hesitantly. "Yeah, I suppose I probably would."

"Okay, then, dream lady, say your piece, so I can wake up an' deny the fact of your existence except as a figment of my feeble imagination or blame you on pizza induced indigestion or whatever.."

"Now, I won't tell you everything about your potential future- that would take too long, bore your ADHD ass off and would not be likely to change things in any case. Even the New Madrid earthquake only made the Mississippi flow backwards temporarily." "Wow, hey what's up with the green words?" "It's called a hyperlink, it's a mystical meta source of information for your reading pleasure. Think of it as kind of like a Rolaids to combat your dream indigestion. I know how lazy you suckers are. you might click on it out of curiousity or for the novelty of it, but you'd be waaaay to lazy to actually go look up a reference to something I mentioned, whether or not you thought you knew all about it already. I'll toss them in occasionally throughout my speech to make me look like I know what I'm talking about when I talk over your head." Boy did I ever hate it when I talked down to myself, even in my dreams. I could have sworn she winked then, but maybe it was just a speck of dust in her eye or something.

"Alright, so what do you want to say to me?"

"I want to talk to you about war", she said.

“Oh, hell,” I said, “this is going to be a lecture about Iraq, isn’t it? Look . . . I voted for John Kerry last year and . . .”

"Pffft. Skerry. Bonesman just like Magog. What were the odds? A few billion to one against? Now I don't know about you, but when I sit down at the bridge table and pick up a hand that holds 13 spades, my first thought is not gonna be- wow, this must be my lucky day! No, it's someone must have stacked the deck."

“After Nine-eleven, we’re fighting terrorism,” I began, “not . . .”

She waved me into silence. "Know what a Category mistake is?” Boiled down- you can't fight a war against terrorism. Just like you can't have a war on drugs, right? You have wars against people or countries, not ideas or substances."

"But that's not what I came here to talk to you about." "Remember when Donald Rumsfeld declared war on September 10th, 2001? Probably not, right? Ever ask yourself where did all those "missing trillions" in the defense budget money go? Wasn't it convenient that we never had to revisit that issue, due to the events of the next day? Ever wonder if there is really any gold to speak of left in Fort Knox, since apparently there hasn't been an audit there since the Eisenhower administration? Ever ask yourself how much money the Global Security Fund has stashed away for a rainy day? Until you stop looking at this whole war thing as a chess game being played by two opposing sides and start looking at who really moves the pieces and plays both sides (hint- follow the money trail), you really won't get it. You'll just keep paying your tax dollars to build those new weapons. Which means they gotta find a use for the old ones. Your country (and the world) is in the last high spin cycle before it hits the dryer, pal. Just look at the amount of money the wealthiest 30,000 Americans are saving each year in tax breaks recently if you want a for instance. Ever wonder what gasoline would cost if you (through your taxes) weren't subsidising it? About $15 a gallon. Forget your ideologies for just a second if you can, and think about THAT one. Hydraulic despotism. Ever wonder what Dune was really about? Substitute the word oil for spice and you begin to see... oh, and about your fears of your, our . . . civil liberties . . . being abridged by your own government... Remember, just because you're paranoid, doesn't mean they aren't out to get you..."

"Marke welle thee fate of alle who meddle withe suche as theye do notte understande..." She looked directly up at the guy writing this now and said, "thate goes fore youwe as welle youwe dafte owlde foole."

Only they were going to die, they were all going to burn to death. And I realized in my dream, it was a horrible way to die. And then some dude from Porlock on business of some sort (I think he might have been named Svlad Djelli, but I can't recall..) woke me up.

Shit, I really gotta lay off of those midnight pizzas- too much truthiness.

Some of the books mentioned, referred to (at least obliquely) and/or shamelessly paid tribute to in this message include: Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency by Douglas Adams, Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, The Stranger by Albert Camus and Flashforward by Robert J. Sawyer



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