Friday, April 17, 2009

The first few days were just weird and annoying. You’d come out in the morning and find one of the damn things had chewed most of the way through your car’s antenna. A week later, people were crashing because the bugs had eaten through brake lines or the cars wouldn’t start at all ’cause the bugs had gone for all the copper wire. And remember, they just bud off another bug when they’ve eaten enough so their numbers increased geometrically. By the end of the first month they’d done for the entire car, finishing off the engine block and every last steel wire in the radial tires. By the end of the first week people were driving out of the southwest. By the end of the first month they were walking.

We didn’t realize they’d go for your fillings and crowns until they’d done for most of the infrastructure in Arizona and New Mexico. What? Yeah, that’s what caused the scarring. There was extensive reconstructive surgery too, or it would be worse. Would I go back? Huh. I’d have to have some of my dental work replaced but it’s not like I have a pacemaker or an artificial joint. But no. I don’t think so. It may be more crowded outside the territory, but who wants to live without metal?

Excerpt: When the Metal Eaters Came: First-Person Accounts

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

truth and beauty bombs

Timmy liked to walk places at night. His walkman was always too loud, but he didn't like to hear his footsteps against the pavement, they never sounded like his own. He walked slowly, long legs taking their time with each step, taking care never to walk on a crack. he often thought about what he would say if someone asked him why he was walking so strangely, and whether it would be worth it to explain his complicated system of not walking on the cracks. He usually decided he'd just answer that he wasn't walking funny. In the night time no one asked him questions, he could just walk quietly, music blacking out the things in his head that were too complicated, thoughts about growing up, fantasies that he'd never followed through on. He never saw anyone on these walks, and that was the way he liked it. Giving an occasional nod to the passing buses was all the socialisation he needed. he'd always written better than he'd talked anyway. It was windy tonight, the rain slapped him across the face like an outrage. but he didn't mind. So he walked, one step after the other. One step after the other.