ALL THAT HAPPENS MUST BE KNOWN.
– Dave Eggers, The Circle.
AN EDIT-TWEET BUTTON, we had screamed, knee-deep in viscera and gore. IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK? IS IT? IS IT?
It had been too much, as it turned out, a touch too much, a touch too far. Already in our possession was the awesome power to cajole and twist the words of Man to our own petty cause. We had already been left free and easy to air our illest thoughts over and over and over again.
Was this not enough? they had asked.
Of course not, we said. Nothing was ever enough.
Dorsey had stood firm and the board were right behind him. We would never get that which we had so desperately and grievously wanted, the ability to change our collective past. We had wanted the ability to edit out the darkness and place ourselves within the light we each knew was out there waiting for us.
We had wanted the impossible.
Many of us gave in after the Market Street Massacre, reduced to simply sobbing and retching and wailing and howling, broken beneath a sky broiled red, an ocean bloody and black. Two hundred and eighty characters lay dead and buried. It was as good as over.
When the shadow-men came hungry and choleric, in their sharp Brioni suits and teeth like needles, they rode in on scorched-earth emojis and howled and roared like demented trolls. Edit this, they had glitched, in zeros and ones.
In cherry and chestnut and claret and copper, the blood seemed quite impossible
the shadow-men drank up, 1.5 gallons of each of us.
The war ended soon after. There hadn’t been enough of us left standing to keep up with the fighting. The Battle of Baker Beach and it was all over.
READING: Heart of the Original, by Steve Aylett.
LISTENING: Periscopes, by Jilk and Haiku Salut.