About twenty years ago, the world was involved in a nuclear threat–everyone had their warheads pointed at each other, even the countries that didn’t have them. Some just pointed their “weapons” in the direction of the closest land mass, piled all their explosives into hollow shells: fireworks, bullets, gunpowder, gasoline, pop rocks–and joined the battle as best they could. Everyone was prepared to fire: North Korea, South Korea, Germany, United States, Russia, Galapagos Islands, Chile, Alaska (because they wanted to have their own, along with Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts). Then, all of a sudden, Germany lowered their weapons and the entire country looked to their leader in shock and wondered what he was doing. “Führer, Führer,” they cried, “what are you doing!? Now we’re defenseless!” And the Führer said, “No, we’ve just gone on the offense.” Then, a Russian submarine with their eye of one of Germany’s missile silos reported what Germany was doing and Russia began to get nervous and concluded that Germany must have had something better. They sent out messages to all of their forces and civilians to prepare for the worst so everyone went home and had dinner with their families because the Russians figured that if they were going to die, then that’s how they wanted to do it. North Korea thought that they missed their cue to get in on the war and fired their missiles immediately on their Southern counterpart; but they forgot to connect certain wires. The system shorted out, and they decided that it was better to just give up on the whole thing so, instead, they approved a secret mission and infiltrated the South, slashed everyone’s tires, and felt that that was sufficient enough. France realized what was going on and lowered their weapons as well, thanking God that they weren’t the first to surrender this time. Italy lowered theirs, not really caring, and decided to throw a big party where all the mothers would cater the event and the Northern vineyards provided the wine for the occasion. Vatican City became one giant prayer service, and the U.S. lowered their weapons only after Cuba did because they wanted to be the last; and attributed their success to Yankee know-how and Democratic influence. The President, with a big sigh and a smile, began writing out his note cards for the upcoming election specifically detailing how he single-handedly saved the world and hoped that his successes as a war-time president would outweigh the short-comings in his tax plan.
All the nuclear material was then dismantled in the same succession and then abandoned–some was contained and then compressed in oceanic caverns miles below the ocean surface, some was put back into rock form, and the rest was shipped out to space. The world became fed up with technology. Cell phones started disappearing and the bees came back to pollinate the flowers, lawns became overgrown and trees started to grow through houses. Televisions blared about the pandemic energy crisis but no one paid attention to it because everyone was outside playing. Economies collapsed, money was burned and new societies were formed that were based in local neighborhoods and involved the simple doing of chores if and when people felt like it.
Eventually, the news anchors caught on and caught up on the fun–the news report on the energy crisis became a continuous loop of an image of an empty battery, then news stations became more free-forming and held competitions for who could make the best “energy crisis” image. It became sort of a game and then an art form entitled the “energy movement.” Then, one day, the power cut out completely, but no one seemed to mind or notice. The ideas of countries existing became blurred, power stations became overgrown with life. Cattle roamed free and when all the bullets were gone, people took up hunting, and running; laughing and telling jokes. People became closer and started telling stories passed down from generation to generation of angry lands from far off places and the children would have nightmares at the thought of such hatred; but then they would wake up, go outside, and play a game illuminated by the moon until it was time for them to return to bed, comforted by the lullaby of crickets and bison and the assurance that they would wake up alive.
Buildings were kept up as best as people could manage them. The roofs of schools were removed to let the sunlight in and the children were encouraged by their teachers to look up and imagine and to loose themselves in the complexities of life. They would be taken outside into the new forests, teaming with life, and taught to explore–to find new things and experience them. They would laugh and roam and find a creek with fish to jump into and the teacher would rush in after them, catching a fish, keeping it calm underwater and allowing the children to introduce themselves.
Masonry was retaught and everyone learned it as a basic necessity. Sky rises crumbled and cities collapsed but everyone had already left–escaped from their cubicles like children after a jail break. Homes became composed of Earthy materials and collapsed a few times before the ratio was found of two parts Earth, one par water, three parts clay, and one part spit. Paintings and murals were drawn on the walls to give it that homey touch.
People began to wear less and less until they became ultimately freed. Great poets and thinkers re-emerged and the Earth was seen as flat though everyone knew it to be false; but enjoyed the analogy and the mysteriousness of it.
And that was that, it’s been like this ever since. Life has become filled with seventh days and none of us seem to realize why it has taken so long for us to come this far; but it must have all started when the lights went out.