Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Ice storm, power outage

It's back up now, fortunately.

When the power goes out for any length of time, all of the distractions of life grow silent.  Except, of course, things with power sources of their own, like cell phones.  But what if those things went out, too?  Many books have been written about EMP events that leave communities struggling to survive in 19th-century-style environments.  The main struggle in those stories is usually the day-to-day hardship coupled with some external threat.  For example, the townsfolk have to re-learn how to wash clothes in the creek while also protecting the town from the biker gang that wants to steal all their stuff.

But what if we strayed from the formula a little?  Let's suppose cell phone use is addictive.  I mean seriously addictive, as if our bodies have adapted to (and are now dependent on) some hitherto-unknown form of radiation emitted by the devices.  Or it could be a known form of radiation, but one with undocumented side effects.  Then, in the sudden absence of that radiation, we experience withdrawal in the form of some kind of toxic shock, and our immune systems react in a wildly unpredictable manner.  The end result is a mental transformation that makes us ultra-violent, provides us with super strength, and tosses things like conscience and remorse and doubt out the window. 

Basically, it's like the "bath salts" scare, but it doesn't just affect a small number of drug users.  It affects everyone who uses a cell phone on a regular basis.  Pretty scary, right?

Could that be the start of a cool story?  I don't know.

Anyway, it doesn't really matter anymore.  The power's back on.

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