Minor Anniversary

Dear J-

We’re leaving work a little bit early today; as I’ve heard, the way they’ve shut down our legacy applications prior to firing up the new ones — indeed, prior to even giving us access to any of these new ones — it’s kinda like asking us to jump from a horse to a stagecoach, like you see in so many movies, except that they’ve shot the horse out from under us.

Meanwhile, I’ve completely failed to recognize the 20th anniversary of Earth*Star Voyager, which was a two-part miniseries that aired on The Wonderful World of Disney (this, durng the Eisner era) when I was looking for anything space or science fiction-related on television.  Two things in particular stand out in my memory:  setting up the rail gun, which they did under great duress; and the whole ship fitting, like a key, into a larger structure.  That all dovetailed nicely with my teenage conspiracy/hidden meanings/superstition life, when I believed in buildings being secret ectoplasmic antennae (Ghostbusters) or honeycombed with secret laboratories (Real Genius).  Hollywood’s got a lot of explaining to do, damnit.

I suppose that’s why the idea of urban exploration appeals to me; it’s like archaeology where you stand a good chance of finding out the answers (usually the history is documented someplace, and digging that up is usually as entertaining as wandering through abandoned places) and the risks are, relatively speaking, fairly low.  How many of my age group are convinced that there’s some treasure map hidden behind an old painting (The Goonies)?  Who’s worked some puzzle devices (you know, “slip the ring off the triangle” kinds of toys), convinced that there’s some practical application?

I read end-of-the-world apocalyptic tales sometimes (The Stand, On the Beach, etc.) and marvel less at the tragedy of so many lost, more at the possibilities of the ruins standing as epitaphs to our lives.  I think I’ve discussed Motel of the Mysteries here before — David Macaulay, of Pyramid, City, Castle, Cathedral, etc. fame envisions latter-day archaeologists excavating a contemporary strip motel (Motel 6-ish) and hilariously misinterpreting their discoveries; chief amongst these delights are the Sacred Points.  There’s lots of fun to be had out there, piecing together a story from fragments.



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