Monday, March 5, 2007

Story Fragment

Oren was a normal guy, as much as anyone really can be normal, and thought that today would be a normal day. He wasn't wrong, specifically. Nothing extraordinary happened as far as the world was concerned. Birds chirped in the morning, it rained in London, sixty-six thousand people were born in India, twenty-seven hundred people died in Ethiopia, and Oren's girlfriend broke up with him. That isn't especially significant, since someone out there breaks up ever day, we can be sure, but it's the method of this break-up, and to whom it happened, that is of import here. Oren woke up expecting to see his girlfriend of two years lying at his side, as he always did, but found instead a crumpled pile of blankets that should have been keeping him warm. Assuming that she was just up early, probably taking a shower or eating her morning Count Chocula, Oren sleepily stalked his way to the kitchen. About to reach for the handle of the fridge, he noticed a mildly annoying blinking, accompanied by a slightly more annoying beeping. Upon closer inspection, he discovered that his incredibly advanced refrigerator was trying to tell him that he had a message. Now, he had fought against this refrigerator until he noticed that it wasn't really the fridge that she wanted, but to have the latest and greatest. He never could understand that to write a message down was simply not easy enough when a person is in a great rush. He had never considered that, with some messages, it makes a difference to be able to hear a message as if spoken from the mouth of the messenger. This message was just one such message, though this realization escaped him at the time. Without much thought to the consequences, Oren pressed the button that would change his life.