Hi, i am the States, your distant cousin. remember me? you used to like me for my blue jeans and my cowboys and maybe even my coca-cola, and my Hollywood stills, and my D-to-the-V-Day march as your Ally. You weren’t so fond of my fast food and how i was secretly recording you, or my global subliminal influence, or my secret missions to throw money and guns at some fine one with more my interest at heart than yours. Once you seat him in office, watch him kiss my beloved ass. i am the States and i’m still All Wall Street and a walking contradiction. Catch me beaming over Putin’s recent remarks, you know how he called me the only superpower. Sure, he’s about as appealing as a nuclear warhead with nowhere to go, but it’s nice to know i haven’t been throwing my weight around the pond for nothing since we put the cold war on ice. LOL. Speaking of ice – does everyone in Europe still drink our diet cokes at room temperature? So bizarre! But so long as you buy. Hello high fructose corn syrup! Who else can boast a cash crop made of air and bubbles and caramel color, with the preservative fortitude to withstand the end of the world? A real punch to the kidney, eh? you know you can’t get enough of me. if i hadn’t created the internet (and i didn’t) we wouldn’t be facetiming and you’d be feeling lonely like Queen Cameron, Brexit the stage, just in time for Wimbledon and her lovely lazy summer days dressed in white and all polite, left to graze the green grass while the markets recover and come to your mother, ya me, over here, with a ring in your ear and a sleeve up your sleeve, superpowering the jetstream to blow you away.
The GPS of fear would not pinpoint. I tapped my wristwatch laptop glass, thinking the problem was my micro-pentium generic processor. Which was notably degraded from infancy onward. Seiko had stopped outsourcing, and brought computer engineering inhouse to try and cut costs. I made the mistake of buying the low-end previous year’s model wristwatch, non-refundable, at the great Sears liquidation sale of 2016.
What an event. Watching the grandpa of one-stop shop household name catalogue-innovator cookie-cutter corporate entities of 20th century America, finally get sucked up into a big gulp straw from the bottom of a concrete bunker once symbolic of its own institutionalized permanence, by the bottomless pit of American consumer thirst. Essentially cannibalized by the monster it helped create.
I stopped tapping when i remembered the news that was broadcast to my ocular contact sensors via Amazon satellite delivery through a drone intermediary hanging stealth in the sky, not a half-mile from my head.
The Ebola virus had swallowed half of Africa and was now resisting arrest on every continent. More than a quarter million dead, ten times as many estimated infected. Wow. What a nightmare. And still the global response was tepid and decentralized.
Putin kept telling the world how he could not understand why Russia’s task force of scientists, doctors and engineers had not yet participated in the leading nations efforts toward containment. He claimed to have mobilized them one year previous. Another great mystery. The States were meanwhile stretched completely gumbubble thin, fighting the perceived enemy in Iraq.
I realized then and there, that my Seiko low-end theory was miscalculated. My microprocessor was not at fault. Nothing could pinpoint the GPS.
Fear was ubiquitous, gumbubble thin, and this very moment crawling up the back of my spine.