30 May 2011

Light travels

The older I get the more I think the Earth was seeded by people from another part of the galaxy and that God is really a gigantic computer programmer who has engineered the planet almost like its an enormous computer game. We are, in relation to God, like cartoon characters who will one day leave our body of atoms and molecules, get downloaded into a more complex set of sub-atomic particles...we'll call them tachyons since they have as one of their intrinsic properties the ability to move faster than the speed of light (hence are not subject to the sspace/time continuum)...and live forever in bodies that are luminescent.

16 May 2011

Page 22

Lieutenant Jones hung up the phone, grabbed a color-coded pen that said, expiration date 5 Nov 2047, and stared at the monitor watching the Plaza. He placed the stylus over a young brunette and clicked. A window appeared onscreen:

Date: 23 Oct 2047
Age: 25
Gender: Female

He clicked ‘more.’ Her family’s closest relatives came up.

Another tap of the stylus.

The screen magnified her image. He zoomed in on her left hand and frowned when he saw the diamond. ‘Strange how some people refused to abandon old traditions.’

Tap…tap…went the stylus as magnification returned to normal. A bearded man caught his attention. Tap…tap…the window revealed little information.

Date: 23 Oct 2047
Approx age: 33
Gender: male
ID: unknown

Unchipper. A call to Central and he would be marked. Lieutenant Jones leaned back in his floating chair and saved the unchipper link to his hard drive, then e-mailed the link to Central. Onscreen, he watched as two Sweep Patrollers immobilized the bearded man with tranquilizers. Nobody asked any questions, nor did they care.

Cash-only transactions in Goshen were almost unheard of nowadays. It would be like paying for goods with gold dust in the early 21st-century. Cash attracted attention to yourself, Sweep Patrollers, Cerberus drones, and (oddly enough) those strange simian-like creatures who wandered the city-state in ever-increasing numbers. Cash labeled you an individual…a solitaire.

Solitaires, while not expressly forbidden, were discouraged and every attempt was made to discourage individualism. Individuals didn’t think like the whole and discouraged unity. Free-thinkers were dangerous.

Four hours of people-monitoring the Plaza wearied Jones. He walked down to the Reality Room, put on his infrared goggles and opened the door to a darkened room. He walked down rows of cubicles seeing people laying on gamer cots with closed eyes and wearing neuroscopes. They were in cybersleep.

Jones settled into the black padded foam chair and adjusted the neuroscopes. He slid his hands into the attached gloves. Almost instantly, the computer read his implanted verichip which identified him as 66-543-8A. A retinal scan confirmed his ID number.

He found himself walking on Madburg Ave in the heart of the club district. He entered St. Bucks CafĂ© and Blues. A holographic Elvis and Michael Jackson were singing the duet ‘Love Me Tender, whether I’m Black or White.’ He put a quarter in the juke box (he had an infinite supply of these and never asked why). A blond-haired girl with tattoos covering her arms sang about satellites falling from the sky…watch yourself and death defy.

“So true,” said a weepy-eyed girl beside him. Jones nodded absently. She was a cute girl with nary a single blemish on her pixilated face.

“Did you hear about the latest satellite fall?” asked Jones. “It landed on top of Logan’s Castle.”

She giggled. “Serves him right after closing the water park a month early. Anyone hurt?”

“Nope. Nobody home except Logan himself and some unchippers.”

Five hours later, Jones emerged from cybersleep and returned to work, realized he was done for the day, had 29 more days until the Sucralose and methyl butyrate kicked in, then went home to a night of Lifequility. He found it difficult to differentiate between the virtual and actual world…but then didn’t everybody?

09 May 2011

Page 21

Lieutenant Jones was 48-years-old and looked 30. He had never been sick a day in his life, and never passed up the opportunity to say so. He loved being in control. Every day he rose at precisely 5:30 AM and immediately started the coffee maker. Then he drank 8 ounces of water chilled to exactly 40 degrees F. At 6:00 AM, he drank the coffee, ate breakfast, brushed his teeth, used the bathroom, dressed for work, and checked off everything he’d done so far on a list.

He also loved lists, especially the making of and checking off parts. When he did something that was not on a list, he added it to the list and checked it off. At the end of every day he collected all the lists and added them to The List…an on-going database that detailed his life’s history to such exquisite detail that he planned on bequeathing it to Maurice’s next door neighbor as a torture device should the need ever arise.

He departed his townhouse at 6:35 AM. 6:50 AM found him parking in spot 5A of the Z-Tech parking lot and 6:59 AM found him primed, prepped, and prepared for people-monitoring, power-mongering, and list-making activities.

Lieutenant Jones puzzled over how the man escaped. ‘What kind of electrical disturbance could cause the drone to break down?’ He wondered if the Velkladdaur knew he hadn’t quite told the truth in the matter. Truthfully, it had to be an electrical disturbance. There was no other explanation.

30 days.

* * *

“We downloaded the video and see the unchipper in the plaza,” explained Quinton Verbosity, Jones’ lead programmer. “The best we can figure out is the tramp stood directly in the line of sight between the drone and Mr. No-chip while the video was running…sort of like the moon during a solar eclipse. See right here at 17’00”35.6…and then as we go to 17’00”42.7.”

Here the technician fast-forwarded the downloaded video.

“Here we see the plaza empty except for these two.”

“You didn’t get a video of the unchipper’s face?”

“Nope. Strangest thing. All the video shows is the back of his head. When he turned around facing the camera, there either was somebody directly in front of him, or else the video just went blank. It’s prolly just an electrical surge in the wiring induced by the latest Call.”

Jones put his face in his hands, and then said. “Get me a picture of the unchipper anyways. The best you can come up with…a close-up. I want to see what the man was wearing. What brand of watch he wears. His hairstyle. I want to know know the cologne type on his skin. Whether he was sunburnt on this day. Things…things I can put on a list and analyze and ponder. The Velkladdeur seems to think it important to find this guy.”

The technician whistled. “What for?”

“Not certain. But know this. When the Velkladdeur wants his man, that man has something worth taking.”

* * *

“Here you go Lieutenant” The technician laid a digitally-enhanced photo on Jones’ desk. “Abercrombie and Fitch khaki pants and looks like size 32-34 waist. Light blue long-sleeved shirt with partially rolled-up sleeves. The shoes appear to be size 11 black Adidas hiking boots.”

“Thank you. That only narrows it down to about…3,000 different people in this city.”

Lieutenant Jones stared at the picture. The digitally-enhanced photo reminded him of one of the scientists in the other drone-making divisions. Tap…tap…tap…went his fingers.

Maurice. That’s his name.

He called the secretary’s office at the alien-tracking division and got a Ms. Skipper.

“Nope. Sorry Mr. Jones. Maurice isn’t working today.”