AM I ALIVE? DID IT WORK?
Yes. You have been in cryo-stasis for over a century, but we have successfully thawed and revived you. When we began the experiment in the late ’90s we were unsure how your body would handle such a long state of suspension, but you appear to be completely unharmed.
AMAZING. I CAN’T BELIEVE IT WORKED. I’M SO EXCITED FOR ALL THE NEW TECHNOLOGY. DO WE HAVE SENTIENT HOLOGRAPHIC PROJECTIONS? TELEPORTATION? PHILOTIC COMMUNICATION? WHAT YEAR IS IT? 2100? … 2105?
What? No, it’s 2012. You’ve been asleep for a hundred dog years. They don’t make CDs anymore and Apple made a phone that’s like a whole computer plus a camera that fits in your pocket but otherwise it’s basically the same.
WHAT ARE YOU DOING?
I’M MAKING A LANDING STRIP FOR YOUR FACE PLANE. WITH ITS CARGO OF KISSES.
I WORRY ABOUT YOU SOMETIMES.
DON’T WORRY, CAPTAIN. WE’LL GUIDE YOU IN. JUST CONTINUE ON YOUR CURRENT COURSE.
I MEAN IT. I LOVE YOU, BUT THERE’S A WIRE OR TWO LOOSE IN THAT BRAIN OF YOURS.
EVERYTHING’S LOOKING GREAT. REVERSE YOUR ENGINES. BRING IT IN NICE AND SLOW.
"Quick—name your best and worst Valentine’s gift ever."
Flash back to V-day morning, pacing down Van Buren Street on my way to work. Typically as I approach the plaza by the Harold Washington stop, I encounter the same students on their way to the American Academy amid the blur of dark-coated pedestrians, along with the same bundled up vendor with an orange vest and a news cart. I find it bizarre that I can never say hi to these people despite the fact that I see them every day, despite the fact that they have become a part of my daily routine.
Today of course, no one is selling the paper. Instead there is a man in his early to mid twenties, who is pointedly trying to get a survey population; I can tell by the way he swerves into my field of vision, positions himself so that by the time we intersect, the questioning is already happening. All this before he says a word. Oh no, I think, why do surveyors always have to stop pedestrians who are clearly in a rush to get to work, and more importantly: why do I always fall for this? Why can’t I just selfishly walk past them, instead of getting overcome by a pang of guilt that somehow obligates me to stop and listen? Okay, get on with it. What are you going to ask me?