Miranda Kate’s Mid-Week Challenge : 2019/08/07 (Week 118)

Physics is an interesting thing, I wish more people understood it. Alas, most people, these days, think Physics is a lie made by the Liberal Left, and it’s radical followers. Which is why I’m here, in this tube, 23,000 miles above the planet.

We left. Those of use that could leave. It wasn’t cheap. It wasn’t easy. Millions of us died because we couldn’t leave.

You might think it was the rich ones of us who survived, and who now live in our little tubes, floating in space, in geosynchronous orbit around the planet that was once our home. It wasn’t. The richest among us worked to find those most deserving of surviving. The ones of us who cared, who helped our neighbors, supported science, and the active quest for knowledge. Those of us who fed the homeless, and the hungry, who paid the medical bills of others, though we couldn’t afford to pay our own.

I walk to the end of my tube, each morning. Well. I call it mourning. That’s when the tube rotates far enough for the sun to start shining light into it again. I walk to the end of the tube, and watch the sun rise. It’s a bit different than being on Earth. No colors. No light shows. Just a sliver of blinding light that enters from one side of the tube, and slowly arcs to the other.

The tube spins about its center point once every 24 hours. Eventually, it will slow down, but that will take centuries. There’s not much friction here to slow it down.

It also rolls. Endlessly. And actually, quite rapidly. About the axis through its entire length. That’s how we get gravity. The tube spins fast enough to throw us into its sides, simulating gravity. Move to the center of the tube, and you will float there for days. Maybe weeks. Before the motion of the air in the tube will pull you far enough off center to smack you into the side of the tube.

This is where we live now. We’ve escaped the conservative hell that Earth has become. The hell that says science is a lie, you can get medical care if you can afford it, otherwise you can die, you can work like a slave for a company, and then live in company provided housing, until you die, or until you piss off someone higher up the company ladder than you. If you do that, you can’t work for anyone. Ever. This is how they keep everyone in line.

You work for the companies. Or you die. It’s that simple.

I’m free of that, here in my tube. I live here with a female of the species, in the hope that we can continue to survive as a population. Right now, travel between tubes is limited. But, we’re working on that. It’s desperately needed to keep the gene pool functional. Too much inbreeding, and we will die out.

It is sad, really, to stand here, each morning, watching the sun rise, knowing what is happening on Earth. Watching the Earth’s atmosphere become more toxic daily. Watching those who still live there die out, and be replaced by machines. Watching the oceans turn die from the solid wall of plastic waste that covers them.

But someday, when everything has reached its end, our descendants may return to the planet. After the biosphere recovers from what we humans did to it, despite what our sciences told us, and the warnings we had of our impending self destruction.

In the meantime, we will be here. In our tubes. Floating along. Doing our best to survive. Dreaming of a world that could have been.

614 Words

It’s week 118 of Miranda Kate‘s Mid-Week Challenge. You can read about Miranda’s small fiction challenge here. Please, go read Miranda’s short tale this week, and any others that showed up. The tales are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed.


Miranda Kate’s Mid-Week Challenge : 2019/08/03 (Week 117)

I made her from junk. From scraps of metal sheets, old chains, nuts and bolts, clasps, hooks, wire. Whatever I could find. She was never meant to be beautiful, a work of art, a marvelous design.

I meant her to show the world what we, as a people, a species, have become. How mechanical. Fake. Artificial. Shallow. With no hearts. No souls. No minds. And no freedom. With nothing left to us, or of us. Except the machines we had created.

Machines like our economies, our societies, our nations, our companies and corporations. For which we were simply human resources. Not humans. Not living, thinking, feeling, priceless life forms, with hearts, and souls, created by some miracle.

Human resources. Parts to the machines. Where you shut up, and you did what the machines told you to do, lived how they told you to live. As a tiny part of a large machine. No longer human. No longer worth anything. Easily replaced, if you broke, or wore out, or a stronger, better made part came along.

Not even like our bodies, our flesh and blood and bones. As humans, as life forms, we were colonies. Macro organisms. Made from billions of separate, individual, cells. Living together, for the benefit of each other. To help each other, support each other, provide for each other. How our nerves told us of danger, fire, sharp objects, things that would hurt us, or kill us.

How our blood moved nutrients throughout all our parts, organs, fingers, toes, heads, and collected waste products, to be expelled from our bodies.

How our digestive systems processed raw material, and pulled from it the things our colonies needed.

Everything worked together.

Sometimes, we got sick. Sometimes, one system, or another system, broke down, and stopped working properly, or even stopped working at all.

That’s when we were our most human. When one of us helped another. When one who could find food would find food for one who could not. When one who could see would try so hard to explain colors, and shapes, and clouds, and waves, and hills, to one who was blind.

But, you see. We failed. We failed ourselves. We invented things. Machines. Societies. Money. Politics. Power. Nations. Companies. And in the process, we turned ourselves into replaceable parts. If one part needs to see, and that part’s eyes stop working, our machines discard the blind one, replacing that human being, that life form, that gift from the universe, with another person who can see.

And then the machines, the companies, never look back. If the part that was defective dies, they don’t even notice. The don’t care. They don’t shed a tear.

I made her because of what we have become. I made her for the people like the man who told me, “You can’t afford to care.” For the many who told me, “Get your act together, and be what they need you to be, or they’ll replace you.” I made her to show them, and to remind them, of what we have become.

For all our greatness. All our achievements. All our glories. We have lost the only thing that mattered. We’ve lost our humanity. And become like her. A collection of parts, made to look human. That can be replaced at any time. And no one will notice. And no one will care.

And having made her, I wonder, and I always will, why did I bother. Why did I expend the effort. Why did I put so much time, so much work, so much of me, into creating her. When I knew. I knew. All along. No one would see her for what she is. When I knew, all along, she would be seen as a work of art. A beautifully crafted piece of sculpture. And nothing more.

For I knew, all along, too many hearts, and too many souls, were gone.

And too many empty, soulless, cold, unfeeling machines, those human resources, were all that was left of us.

670 Words

It’s week 117 of Miranda Kate‘s Mid-Week Challenge. You can read about Miranda’s small fiction challenge here. Please, go read Miranda’s short tale this week, and any others that showed up. The tales are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed.

#ThursThreads Week 373 : We Need Confirmation

On Thursday, I had a fight with some guy at a gas station. I was tanking up, heading to Colorado, to explore what I could of the Anasazi Indian settlements, and their arrangements on the ground, when he asked where I was heading.

“Researching the Anasazi settlements.”

“Oh. Another one of those Ancient Aliens people?”

“No. Not really. Something else.” We got talking about my idea that we’d been technologically advanced before, but something happened, and he laughed at me.

“Yep. One of those Ancient Aliens people.” It was an insult. “We need confirmation before we can even think about that type of stuff.”

“And I suppose you’re going to tell me that chem-trails are a real thing?”

“Hell, yes! I can see them hanging in the air after jets fly over!”

It was my turn to laugh at him. That’s all I remember until I woke up in a strange room, with someone explaining to me, “You have a broken nose, and jaw.” I spent the night in the hospital, getting my nose and jaw put back together, and getting stitches in several places.

Chem-trails. What an idiot. I decided I’d never talk to anyone about my idea again. Not until I had it all figured out.

208 Words

It’s Week 373 of #ThursThreads, hosted by Siobhan Muir. Part 8 of a story outline I call “This Has All Happened Before”. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #ThursThreads. They are always fun to read. And there are some great writers who show up weekly.