Monday, November 21, 2005

Fishback to the Future

None of the previous versions of the Fakiegrind time machine that Dr. Flavour has sent me have worked, so I was quite surprised when, after setting the chrono-counter to an arbitrary future date and flipping the "temporal disengagement drive" into action, I heard an ominous sucking noise--much like a toilet flushing--and found myself transported some fifteen hundred years into the future.

In less than an eyeblink everything changed. I found myself, for instance, no longer in the comfort of the Fakie Central kitchen, but rather adrift at sea. Clutching the time machine to me like a life preserver (it was, like so many of Dr. Flavour's ingenious inventions, made of styrofoam and two-by-fours), I bobbed up and down for a time, admiring the purplish hue of the sky and the irregularly-shaped extra moon that appeared to be suspended in the heavens.

Eventually I was rescued by a large tour boat. It seems that in the distant future, with so many of the Earth's previous coastal regions submerged in water, a new industry of archaeological fishing and snorkeling tours has arisen. Tourists fish for artifacts in the shallow waters above former urban centres, and take their trophies--yogurt containers, lawn chairs, pieces of vinyl siding--back to decorate their crowded mountaintop condos.

I was lucky enough to meet up with a kind elderly couple (people in the future can live up to 300 years, thanks to vast improvements in bionic technology), who were nice enough to fill me in on some of the details of future life. The oddly shaped "moon" I had seen, for instance, was actually an enormous communications satellite, no longer in use, but still circling the planet until the day when it will come crashing to earth in a blazing fireball of death.

It seems that many technological advances have been abandoned or forgotten, the majority of people living a vastly simplified lifestyle, with the exception of an elite cadre of Bionic Priests who are the keepers of the cybernetic techno-virus allowing for the considerable extension of the human life-span. War and international discord has been abolished, ever since the World Government was taken over by a race of intelligent heat-vent sponges that had been cultivating their enlightened line of Philosopher Sponge Kings somewhere on the Pacific ocean floor for thousands of years. Even now, I have learned, they are there, subtly shaping the course of human civilization to bring circumstances to the point where the Sponges will be able to leave their ocean homes and be installed as benevolent Global Depots.

Under the expert guidance of the Sponges human civilization finally flourishes, largely liberated from the shackles of ignorance, fear and intolerance that had held us back for so long. Given the Sponge's great sensitivity to rhythmic stimulation, old school rap music sees a renaissance, and the sultry sentimentality of new country is all but abolished. Once the gasoline runs out, skateboarding is adopted as the locomotive form of choice for Earthlings, the emphasis being no longer on where one is going to, so much as how artfully one can get there. Dungeons and Dragons, the fantasy adventure role-playing game, is the global pass-time in the future (video games have been eclipsed due to electricity shortages, and the orginized sports teams remain on strike for so many centuries that people give up on them), and Gary Gygax, the college drop-out inventor of the game is revered as one of the great benefactors of humanity.

Oh, and another strange cultural phenomena, Seinfield re-enactment societies, are ubiquitous. The problem is, nobody wants to play George, so there is a whole sub-industry of George robot production. The most popular model is the Costanza 5000 (with realistic hair loss capabilities). A brief period of global chaos ensues in the 33rd century when, due to an erroneous "Napoleon circuit" the entire fleet of Costanza 5000s goes haywire and attempts to take over the world under the chilling battle cry of "The Millennia of George". Fortunately for humanity and sentient sponges alike, the entire robot empire crumbles under the weight a lame plot development involving a Hawaiian shirt that gets misplaced at the dry cleaner.

Well, even though I said I was going to lay off the blog for a while, I couldn't help but report back about my strange adventure. I almost didn't make it back to the present--there were all kinds of "temporal butterfly effect" insurance forms and paperwork to fill out. I would have liked to have stayed longer in the future, it being quite agreeable to someone of the Flatlander temperament, but it turns out that I had library fines of about 10 billion dollars for an overdue book, so I had to come back. It seems strange that, according to the blogger clocks, less than seven hours have elapsed since my last post, but such are the paradoxes of temporal tourism. Stay old!


Bhakti said...

AHA!! Now you HAVE to keep posting!
If you traveled 300 years into the future (that's what you said, right?) and wrote a'll have to write some more posts inbetween to fill up the VOID. Otherwise, you'll create a vaccuum that will suck all of your great experiences into oblivion!!!


And, if (in the future) there's no one to play George, I'll do it. I'll shave my head, gain some weight, and act like a complete putz...but ONLY if I have time in between Bionic Woman takes, and if you PROMISE to keep the blog rollin'!

flatlander said...

Hmmm....playing George-- that's alot to ask of anyone, with or without a bionic neck. I'm just worried about becoming a shut-in blog potato if I keep this up. I'll have to think about your offer.

Adjuster said...

I know the Flatlander. He's just bluffing, hoping to up the "return reader", and "comments count".

He's threatened to shut down the blog before, just like his almost weekly renunciations of skateboarding and old time religion.

But he always goes back to the wheelieboard, and to grovelling before the Creator of All to forgive his miserable sins--all those kickflips and varials he's messed up.

I wouldn't worry too much about this end-of-the-blog hyperbole--this coming from someone who has extensive experience with things apocalyptic. By the way, would anyone like to buy some Fakiegrind Stock Shares? They're currently selling rather cheap.

Bhakti said...

Flatlander: At least become a 'blog-potato' until I get back to work (Feb or March 2006).

Potatoes aren't such a bad thing, you know. Just check out some of my posts from October. I actually created a National Bake Your Friend A Potato day...Oct. 29th.
Potatoes can be your friend.

I may not be the right gender to play George, but he didn't really rely on the laurels of his gender to get him anywhere in life, so that shouldn't be a problem. The height thingy could be an issue. He's about 5-4, no? Hhhmmm....I'll have to slouch.

(No I'm not crazy...)

PLASTIC-HEAD RED-ADJUSTER MAN: you mean the tears were all in vain?

Roboshrub Incorporated said...

I refuse to not buy all of the Fakiegrind Stock Shares.

Unfortunately, accounting won't let me touch the money anymore.

I'll trade you Gyrobo's left arm.

Adjuster said...

Robofern: Do you mean to offer Gyrobo's fabled Left Arm Of Imperviability to Extensive Movie Trailers in trade for my entire Fakiegrind Stock holdings? Throw in the sleepy-time clown hat and you have a deal.

Bahkti of the multiple limbs: Your tears are what keep me doing what I do.

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Roboshrub Incorporated said...

Erm... the sleepytime clown hat is not mine to give. I built Gyrobo, so he belongs to me... but the hat is his.

But the arm I'm refering to is actually the FROST BURST Left Arm Of Imperviability to Extensive Movie Trailers.

In place of the hat, I'll pinch Karl's Wand? He's locked up, all his stuff is in an envelope anyway. Took the lives of countless body-shield drones to get it away from him.

flatlander said...

Sigh. That Entime Adjuster; what a miscreant.

So you're out of work too, Bhakti. My condolences. I'm in the same boat, although I've undertaken sacred oath never to return to gainful employ.

On the other hand, now that skateboarding season is over, the thought of blogging the winter away fills me with a great deal of dread.

Despite these uncertain times, I feel that I should stick to my vow to quit the blog. Otherwise I will loose all credibility...and people might think I was just making all this stuff up!

I like your Bake a Friend a Potato Day, we'll have to undertake a blog campaign to popularize the event. But I'm getting ahead of myself--I quit, remember?!

Adjuster said...

Frost Bursts! That could really help a guy when feeze-dried prawn season comes around again. I'll think about this deal.

But isn't there a CURSE associated with Karl's magic wand?

Roboshrub Incorporated said...

You mean the one where nearby dead people turn into multi-spiked red demons?

Hogwash. I'm a man of science. Science and magic. Magitech.

Bhakti said...

Yes...I'm out off work due to the bionic noodling that needed to be done on my cervical spine. I will return in March, most likely.

Roboshrub Inc. and I will not let you retire. So what if you're a hyprocrit! So is Dubya and ya don't see him cryin' about it, do ya? Seems to be the American way.

Ooooohhhh...I'm getting ruthless in my old age.

I'm starting to think--with the aide of my bionic neck--that you and Robocop and Roboshrub and the Apocolyptic Insurance dude with the red plastic head are ONE IN THE SAME!

If you retire, I will have to sick my evil twin on you! (Oh my gosh...not only has Roboshrub stolen my brain, but now I'm talking like red plastic head apocolyptic insurance dude! I used to be a respectable teacher/writer, now look what I've become! Okay...get out while you can!! RUN FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!!)

Roboshrub Incorporated said...

Three things I'd like to clarify:

1) It's possible Gyrobo is running Fakiegrind as a simulation, as an extenuated April Fool's Day joke, but at least he and I are separate. As it stands, I believe Fakiegrind are just good friends of ours.

2) I believe Fakiegrind is composed entirely of Canadians, so you'll have to find a better metaphor than G-Bush (Google is a copycat).

3)The man selling Endtime Insurance is known as the Endtime Adjuster.

That should bring you up to speed, methinks.

Bhakti said...

Hey, don't get all bent out of shape!! I know he's called the adjuster guy, but I like to think of him as the red plastic head dude.

Anyway, I was just writing to tell Flatlander that I nominated him for a blog award. He should be receiving an email from Miladysa soon.

Last week I nominated Zombie Slayer and he won.

This week I nominated Gyrobo and Flatlander...cause you guys rock and saved me from hours of post surgery boredom.


Gyrobo said...

Quiet, Roboshrub! If they know too much, the simulation will be reset- as was foretold by the Adjuster!

Roboshrub Incorporated said...

Don't make me auction off your voicebox! Though, you have a point.

flatlander said...

Yes, it's true that Fakiegrind is composed entirely of Canadians, or Canadian ex-pats--with the exception of Kil-Joy whom we suspect has been abducted by aliens.

The origins of the Endtime Adjuster are shrouded in mystery, though he seems to have some strange affinity for the rainforests of South America.

I think that 15 comments is a new record for Fakiegrind, and I am truly touched. Touched in an emotional way, and not just in my addled brain (which was already evident).

Michael said...

Well then, lets make it 16!

Valerie said...

This made me laugh out loud - with no disrespect to all avid readers.

Now it is 17

Anonymouse said...

I've just made the 19th comment...and that's my birthday I win a prize??

flatlander said...

Yay, Bride of Zombie! As the 19th commentator on this post you win a state-of-the-art Fakiegrind Time Machine, to be sent to you and your Zombie groom through the United Planes of Existence Temporal Courier Service.

Which is to say, it should have been there yesterday.

Thanks for reading, everyone!

Duncan said...

Grama showed me your site today.Pretty cool .

flatlander said...

Oh no! Now I will be accused of corrupting the youth.

Hi Duncan!

Anonymouse said...

Oh my gosh! I'm so excited...I just received my Time Machine!! Let me turn it on...



I saw a man running into the woods. He had a mustache. O my GOD--it couldn't be!-- I think it was Frank!!

Bhakti said...

I want this post to have 100 comments: I'm #24!

Jerry said...

Hi guys...Just wanted to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving. I hope none of you are purse wearin' Tinkie Winkies. If not, have a terrific day!

flatlander said...

Canadian Thanksgiving was a month ago, but here at the Tinkie Winkie Fanclub, we thank you from the bottom of our "manpurses".