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The Road Disease

Date: 30-Oct-2013/14:48+3:00

Tags: , , , ,

Characters: me, headgear man, sneering woman, man, second man

I was talking to someone who was wearing apiece of head-mounted gear, that had some kind of laser or other lighting device that was coming down over one eye.
me: "What is that for? What is this technology about, and what does it do?"
headgear man: (gesturing) "It's so that the machine can track your location and what you're looking at. Let me show you."
A large white-enameled machine with black writing on it labeled "Aperture Science" began to go through various morphing structures. It refolded itself into a jet plane shape, like a Transformer toy would. There were a few other changes into things that weren't easily recognizable.
Note Aperture science is the name of the company that builds the AI "GlaDOS" and the portal gun, in the Portal series of video games.
me: "That's pretty cool, but you remind me of someone. Do you have any connection with that person? What can you tell me about what's going on?"
headgear man: "Yes, I'm connected. I can tell you that you are going to keep getting pushed back until you tie up your old email archives. You've got too many loose ends, so work on that. Maybe you need to buy a better email program, a big powerful package to deal with it..."
He smirked and another man a little ways away gave him an annoyed look.
headgear man: "I'm just kidding, DON'T do that. He's mad because he just did so trying to get his mail out of Google, and got some spyware in the process. As the saying goes: "Now you have two problems.""
He turned his attention back to the morphing machine.
headgear man: "Now let's do something more schematic...we can spread it out further."
The machine began to transform into a skeletal form that might have been a boat. It was only the frame of it, so it began to emerge and inflate and was coming right toward me.
me: "Hey, can you stop? It's going to hit me."
It didn't stop, so I just stepped out of the way and watched as it continued to grow past me. Separated from him now, I turned and one of the walls seemed to open up into a mall like environment. I was having trouble moving, but others seemed to move effortlessly. I stopped some people to question them.
me: "This place looks like a mall. I mean, it has... lots of little things like these keychains for instance. Dream souveneirs?"
I went over and poked at a display board of keychains. They looked like fairly typical kitschy keychains, I had trouble reading the writing on them.
me: "So I need an explanation of why is it that everyone around me is moving around just fine, while I seem to be stuck in tar or something. What do I look like to you? Am I like, a handicapped zombie wandering around in a mall and people just ignore that I'm there?"
People walked away from me, and a sneering woman turned back to address me as I followed them.
sneering woman: "It's just like anything else. Some people are born luckier than others, or certain circumstances lead you to be in a healthier or sicker position. Maybe it's karma for you saying all old people should be killed."
me: "That is not what I said. I have said that given limited resources we should have a social consensus that we invest them on cases where you can make an impact...and the medical system shouldn't sit around bleeding money from people who don't have much quality of life. Those people should have planned ahead and thought of the real costs of their caregiving, and use their resources for people who can make a better contribution and have a better quality of life. If we had more thinking like that in problem-solving, we could be to the point where no one had to be old or disabled."
sneering woman: "Oh. Well, whatever, bye."
There was a river I was walking along and several seating decks. The seated people seemed to know me.
man: "Quit wasting time. You talk a lot about open source and stuff. Why don't you spend more time on that?"
me: "That's all I have been doing, and driving myself crazy doing it. Programming, marketing, icons... everything."
second man: "Oh yeah, I saw those drawings last year. Actually really good stuff...does anyone know why the project isn't using that yet?"
The conversation went around a bit, but I became distracted by a sharp splinter-like pain in my palm. I worked a black shard out of it, but the shard seemed to come to life and wriggle off as a wormlike bug. I then noticed there were more of these on my arms, and on a ledge I was leaning on while talking to the seated people.
me: "Ack. What is this stuff?"
man: "It's the 'road disease'."
Not knowing how to get rid of the things crawling on me, I decided to jump in the water. People urged me not to, and I'm not sure if that's because something was wrong with the water or they were afraid of me contaminating it. Either way, I got out and it seemed to have gotten rid of most of them... but they came back shortly thereafter, and I awoke.
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copy write %C:/0304-1020 {Met^(00C6)ducation}

The accounts written here are as true as I can manage. While the words are my own, they are not independent creative works of fiction —in any intentional way. Thus I do not consider the material to be protected by anything, other than that you'd have to be crazy to want to try and use it for genuine purposes (much less disingenuous ones!) But who's to say?