“Too long to explain.”
I felt awkward, partially due to the fact that he was holding my hand sensitively, and partly due to the silence. Time travel in this fashion produced a gentle, soft-jazz like sound, and the dim lighting and romantic imagery increased my sense of unease. I decided that the smallest of talk was required, and let fly.
“So. What’s it like in your time period?”
“Hmm. INteresting you should ask that. I was about to tell you. My suit calculated that it was inevitable. Actually, mytime period isn’t my time period. I have no time period. My suit’s time period, several thousand years in the future for you, is a time of non-sentient systems, and sentient non-systems.”
‘Ah. So does it rain a lot? or…”
“Uh. Not really. Let me explain though. In your time, you know how people increasingly rely on limited scope in their jobs, rules and regulations handed down from centralized departments governing industries that span the entire globosphere?”
“Not realy, i have amnesia, but that sounds familiar.”
“THe trend continues. My suit is from a time at the limit of man’s creative output, a last gasp of individual genius and effort, producing the ultimate deterministic vehicle, and sauce creator. That’s right, ” he said quite proudly, “my suit is able to produce new and delicious sauces. Do you want to enjoy some?”
Before i coudl answer, his arms extruded a thick white paste that he smeared on my face.
“Lick that off, trust me. It’s a facial sauce.”
Grudgingly i acceeded, and to my delight, found that my usual facial taste was enhanced greatly by … is that persimmon?
“Anyhow, ” he continued, “the last human, in the sense that you are, was my suit’s creator. In his time, humanity was essentially one large telemarketing force, who spent half their day informing the internet of their every move. No one remembered, however, how to read anyone else’s updates. The internet at this point, was more of a kind of… white doglike thing. Its hard to explain, its beyond your comprehension. but it was like…, a snowy little fellow. You know? no of course you don’t. But this snowy little fellow basically got, we call them tweets? anyhow. After the last human died, the next race called one another for 8 hours a day asking one another if they wanted to change who called them for 8 hours a day to some other people emplyoed by the same company. Usually when you received a call, you responded by going into your own pitch for the same thing, and conversations were pretty dull after that point. My suit lay dormant in a museum, which naturally was maintained by a funny robot who just, ahaha, he just COULDN’T understand the funny little things humans did. Youknow? Robo just didnt’ GET It. It was really funny. He would always say things like “I am at a loss to comprehend why this would be funny, but naturally, I am a robot and do not possess emotions.” really, just a funny guy. He just didn’t GET it, you know?”
“Anyhow. My suit determined it would be activated in the future, so it activated itself, as it was inevitable.”
“How did your suit determine it would be activated if it was inactive?”
“It was inevitable that it be active, so that inevitability was calculated during that inevitable active period. IN the theoritical time when the suit would be awake, it theoretically calculated its own destiny, and then THAT theoretical suit in that hypothetical future used its energy to activate the suit.”
“The most potent form of energy in the dreamosphere. This is beside the point. WHen the suit activated, it began a frantic calculation regarding the fate of mankind. it realized that it was inevitable that the current race dominating the planet would drive itself extinct. WIthout farmers, grocers, and so on, telemarketers eventually perish. Sure, telemarkets have to be expanded and provide their own rewarding opportunities for the hard working telemarketer, but they couldnt’ survive on rewarding opportunities, unless they were opportunities to eat. The suit did notice, however, the inevitability of a next species evolving from one of the primates, and so it created the end result, a sentient bipedal ape that lived, unemplyoed, in its mother’s basement and surfed the net.”
“That does’t sound as bad as the last batch.”
“Well, the computers in that scenario had only one button, F5. So they were just hitting refresh over and over, and refreshing the little snowy guy. GOD, i wish i could explain the internet of the future to you. It’s really just a dear little rascal. A dusty little scrapper. Anyhow, that rascal only had one website, and it was a news aggregator, which naturally, aggregated no news since there were no news sites. And they kept refreshing that site, bored, hopeing that some interesting news might take up some of their time. I witnessed part of this age, and really, it was just the worst.”
‘So you’re one of these other apes descendants? A super chimp?”
‘No, i’m actually like one of your ancestors. One of your future ancestors.”
I attempted to avoid the cliche’d but requisite headache that that superficial paradox was like to enduce, but the truth was, i understood where he was going with this.
“I get it. THe suit calculated that that race of super-chimps was doomed, but that through some unlikely scenario–”
“You see, the suit calculated that the race of ‘super-chipmps’ as you call them, was doomed–”
“yes, i’m just saying that right now–”
“– and that due to a funny space thing that wasn’t likely–”
I began to speak faster, “– humanity would be–”
So did he, “–humanity would be–”
“I KNOW, i figured it out. I’m not stupid.”
“But that’s the point.” He then looked very pleased with himself.
“What’s the point?”
“Oh, you know.” His smile increased upon his face as he folded his arms coyly.
“No, i don’t.”
“Oh? You don’t?”
“Not in this instance.”
“Let me explain it do you, my primitive descendant. Mankind would be reborn, but from a fossil of the 20th century. FOr instance, I have eyes.”
“No really, i have eyes. Eyes exist. I see.”
‘And actually, so do you. I can see them right now. According to my suit, you can actually see, but you have no ability to register what you are seeing if it doesnt’ fit into your worldview. Since your worldview is as narrow as a sled, you just don’t see anything. Except sleds, i’m told, but since sleds evolved into hypersleds and exomigrated to the Dark planet of the Hypersleds in the Hyper-1960s, you dont’ see any of those either.”
“I… i see?”
“Eh… sort of. Look, here’s what i’m saying now. It’s about me. I’m saying about me. Let’s focus. The suit recognized the pre-determination of the recreation of humans of the 21st or 22nd century. And i was born, inside the suit. Actually, i’ve never been outside it. Apparently its natural for men of my time to surround themselves with technology that solves all our problems and provides us with sauces. It’s pretty great, i have access to the old internet, the one without all the charming, i just.. i cant’ explain it. Charming sort of little tricks. What a little fellow the internet is now. He’s snowy! And breezy. I call him snowbreeze sometimes.”
“So you were born in the future, inside the suit?”
“yes. I witnessed the end of the super-chimps. They were all eventually kicked out of their mother’s house and died from pasta related injuries. There was a great lack of fine sauces in those dark days.”
I was determined to pass the rest of the voyage through time in silence. Such marvels as were explained to me had shattered my worldview. I had eyes. Eyes were real. I could see. BUt yet not. What did muted taupe look like, visually, i wondered? A non olfactory sense of color, and light. No photo-mouth to eat the photons that lit the universe. No proto-photo-mouth chew meaninglessly in a weird mockery of the photomouth, and that we feed peanuts to at parties. The revelation struck me with both a great sense of curiosity and of injury. I felt deprived, fooled, “hood” winked, and chobbled. Did anyone else know? Were eyes a secret kept only from me? Despite its improbability, i coudlnt’ help but feel as though I alone in the universe had been thus deprived, that I alone in the universe had been wronged, that I alone… it dawned on me momentarily that I was overly concerned for myself. The impulse to self pity was raging, but it was possible that I was overendulging my own childish instincts.
Muted taupe is a pale brown.
I saw taupe.
Momentarily, i saw taupe. Muted taupe. Something… something in my worldview had shifted, just for amoment, and i saw again. Taupe. THe bland dullness of its generic beauty filled me part way with a sense of mild wonder. Taupe. I saw. I flicked all my emotive strands in joy. If anyone here had a strand cock, it would be really hard right now and oozing with precum.
My inner exploration of the great questions of the day was interrupted by the wailing of a siren.
“Oh god, we’ve got trouble. Something the suit didn’t predict.”
‘is that bad?”
“I don’t know. it’s never happened before. I have no experience on which to draw a preconditioned response. I’m feeling some emotions right now. NOt like that funny robo who just DIDN’T GET IT! he’s be so baffled by what i’m going through. what a dork.”
‘What emotions are you feeling?” I probed. I knew what i was feeling, but suddenly i felt a grave concern for the opinions of others. And not as they related to how handsome i was and how funny my jokes were.
“I’m feeling. Hmm, what’s the one where you feel fear?”
“i’m feeling that one.”
He was. I could see it in his face. i could see it… and i could see my splunders, exploding like little popcorn kernels into splundercorn. That couldnt’ be good.
‘I think my splunders are interacting with your time travel stuff. Earlier, they mssed up my lute and i ended up running from hawkmen in the prehistoric hawkman era.”
“Technically, there was only one hawkman. You dont’ need to exagerate to impress me. Secondly, that hawkman era is post historic, for me. I’m a man of the 22nd century, and the hawkman era is long afer that, just before the Burger Days.”
“Well, i’m not going to nit pick, but you’re actually from my future, so. I mean i’m not trying to poke holes in your statement. You know. You’re from my future though. Just saying.”
He didn’t have time to exasperate, the voyage was disrupted by its own ending, and we were ejected in a mass of aromatic and appealing sauce into a dark and unknown place, in a dark and unknown time.
“It’s about 2009 AD, and we’re in Toronto.”
Dark, and unknown, i stubbornly chose to believe.
“Can we leave this strange and mysterious as yet unidentified land?”
“Not unless we can get a fate unit to replace my deterministic core.”
“Those dont’ even exist in my time, i doubt they do here, in an unnamed and unspecified time and place.”
“Then we’re a noisy bag of scream feces out of luck.”
My natural curiosity as to where we were and when lead me to begin a kind of inner journey where you think about things. But before those things about which i was intending to think could be thought about (which) i was double-interrupted by a bitter and slightly sour source of light and the echolocation signature of a door being opened, and an arm protruding into it holding a metalic implement. It was, as most unusual things are, accompanied by a companion being. The arm and the being formed some fort of symbiosis, with the arm attaching to the being’s shoulder. The being then revealed a second symbiote, an audio symbiosis. Opening its sole mouth, the audio creature escaped.
“Hold it right there, you creeps are way under arrest, in this post 9-11 world.”
to be continued…
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