Space Man

In tribute to my all-time favorite Space Man. Spider From Mars the world over bow their heads today…

Everyone had their own theories on the Space Man’s arrival. That is seven billion, eight hundred ninety-four thousand, four hundred and twenty-one theories.

Near as anyone can figure, the Space Man was born on one of the moons circling Pluto, hatched from an egg-shaped rock that glowed once opened. He was born fully formed in what was, by all accounts, a human-like body. The only distinction between himself and the humans who were drawing these conclusions were his blue skin and his disproportionately large eyes.

Also, near as anyone can tell, he sat in his ship, (which was little more than a bubble to both human optics and instrumentation,) blinking at the Earth with a confused expression on his face for six days before deciding to land.

Of course, once he landed, the Space Man couldn’t speak English or any other language. The first customs officials who shouted at him from a safe distance report only that he flapped his mouth in imitation, without any sound emerging. They said he looked distinctly like a fish when he did it.

A few minutes after that, the Space Man must have decided the time had come to communicate because every human in the world, all seven billion, eight hundred ninety-four thousand, four hundred and twenty-one of them, found their heads filled with a loud gurgle at exactly the same time. The sound was described alternately as a babbling brook and a flush toilet. Widely-assumed to be a message, the sound left the world perplexed and one too many folks in need of a quick place to pee.

Another seven days passed with the Space Man standing there, blinking and flapping his gums at anyone who came close to him, before the world’s leading archeo-linguists and several top code-breakers suggested a possible translation: Where am I?

It was at this point that the Space Man was officially declared a prophet. The thinking went like this: He looked human, but was certainly not human. He came from the sky. He wanted to tell them something. Ergo. (Humans, of course, have great difficulty imagining that they are not at the center of things.)

There were a few suicides, dozens of new religions, and a suffocating amount of awful fan art in the wake of this declaration, to which the Space Man responded predictably by blinking and flapping his gums.

In the end, two months after he arrived, he blinked one last time, climbed back into his bubble, and left. Humanity as a whole has been unable to process this news and has been staring up at the sky in a bewildered vigil ever since, still trying to unravel the many profound layers of the Space Man’s message.

Now, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to conclude that the Space Man’s unusually large eyes, calibrated to the darkness of Pluto, had most likely become blinded on his journey towards the inner solar system. Of course, this would suggest his message was quite literal. He was lost. On his way to a party, perhaps. Or maybe a sort of space walk-about. Either way, this theory reaches the unpleasant conclusion that after only two months on the Earth’s surface, the Space Man decided blindly rocketing out into space was preferable to staying.

This disturbing idea now resides in the human subconscious. And for that reason, Earth resolves to celebrate January 1oth loudly every year as The Day of the Prophet’s Arrival. The period on the end of this assertion is read especially loudly, as a dare to any human alive to even breathe the words “space blindness.” Of the seven billion, eight hundred ninety-four thousand, four hundred and twenty-one theories, it has not come up yet.

And what has become of the Space Man? Well, let us hope for his sake, he has found his party.

 

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You Are in a White Room: Part Eight

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Here’s another installment of my ten-part horror serial. As usual, this post is in conjunction with the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop. To all those at WeWriWa, thanks for stopping by!

If you have missed anything, here are the links for Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI, and Part VII.

 

VIII

You are angry. You do not know who you are and you do not know if you have a job or if you went to work today or any other day, as the posters seem to imply. You begin to tear the posters down. When you pull the last poster off the wall, you discover, with another horrifying squeeze of your chest, that it hides a small, square hole. You do not care what you will find as you climb into the dark hole and head toward the white light at the end of it. You do not care that your knees and palms are being bloodied. The tunnel heads into the center of the square made by the hallways, but at the same time, you realize it is too long to head into the center of the square made by the hallways. You want out. You are angry. You don’t know who you are.

Join me back here next week for Part IX.

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You are in a White Room: Part Seven

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This post is a part of the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop. Check out the link for more writers or to participate yourself!

What follows is the seventh installment of my ten part horror serial. Click Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, or Part VI, if you need to catch up. And, after you’re done reading this, scroll down to check out my post from earlier this week.

Happy New Year!

 

VII

You are in a white room. Outside is a white hallway. The hallway, you now know, leads in a square with each corridor containing one door, and the doors all lead to identical rooms. Each room has tally marks scratched into the wall, but the marks reflect different numbers. You cannot remember the numbers you wrote on your wall. You don’t know which is your room and this, for some reason, brings you to tears. In the hallway is one poster repeating thirty-two times. It tells you that you should not have gone to work today. You do not know who you are. And now that you have lost track of your white room, you do not even know how many times you have woken up.

Stay tuned for Part VIII next week!

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A Warning

Never assume it is safe to enter a grocery store after taking hallucinogens. You may make it to the automatic doors without anyone noticing how long you pause before entering. You may even fight the desire to spin around and watch the door magically close behind you, thus giving yourself away and perhaps causing a concerned manager to annunciate loudly in your direction. But, you will not escape the cereal aisle.

You may happen upon it immediately, marching towards the freezer section to obtain some ice cream and then catching a hint of its siren song as you pass. Or you may spend a good hour assessing the skin that covers an orange first. (Are those pores? you may find yourself wondering. Does it sweat? Am I sweating?) It doesn’t matter how it happens. You will eventually arrive at the cereal aisle.

At first, it will seem benign. You may even be looking for cereal. But then, something will change. You will realize you are combing a vast prairie of fortified possibilities. You are wading through sticky promises of strong bones, smooth digestion, and mind-bending taste. You are being offered a quality-functioning liver, magnificently-pliable tendons, a new heart in fancy cardboard boxes. On sale! You will consider whether your organs are in need of an upgrade. It begins.

B-vitamins. Potassium. Calcium. Manganese. Iron. Titanium. You will no longer be sure if these are substances which belong in your body. In fact, in fact, you are going to be quite sure you have survived for years without uranium-enriched chocolate squares. Quite sure.

The shelves will now have begun to climb higher and higher in order to offer you more! More what? More shapes for one. Chocolate circles, chocolate squares, chocolate faces, letters, and astrological signs. You turn to your left and your right. You look down the lengths of the aisle, but its ends are nothing more than coupon-clipped assumptions stretching farther and farther away from you, because what if you don’t like chocolate? What if God forbid you are bored with chocolate? What about honey? What about nutty? What about day-glo fruit replicant?

It will now become more and more obvious to you that the amount of breakfast possibilities is actually infinite, that the factories and machines and human beings who produce these boxed breakfast items must in fact take up every last acre of land, may in fact be stationed on the Moon and Mars, for how else would we assure the great American populace that they will have an ample supply of breakfast food to choose from. The cereals themselves, the corn and rice, the wheat and oat, must be grown and processed, you are going to realize, and then treated with nine different sugary combinations, molded into seventeen different shapes, dyed to fifty-two different glow-in-the-dark colors, (how else will we find them at night?) stuffed in sixty-six different boxes, each appliquéd with a different smile blasting bright breakfast bliss. Oh, but don’t stop there. No, don’t stop there, because now you are going to see the names, the slogans, the bold-faced type, the plastered faces of maniacal and sucrose-addicted cartoon animals, harmless in their monochromatic simplicity, terrifying in their wild-eyed promises. Proselytizing? Yes, proselytizing with the outstretched candy-filled hand of a child molester, brimming with anticipation, future gains, and dental visits, all of this under the shameless florescent glare of the supermarket.

Carts pushed by old ladies, carts carrying babies (babies, for christsakes!) will wheel past you. You will probably be having a panic attack at this point as you imagine the rotors and pistons, the clunks and whirs of the machines working day and night to churn out our Breakfast Choices! Is it possible that humans only exist in order to make their own breakfast? you will worry as your heart slams against your ribs. Is this the point, the purpose, the pasteurized, calcified, magical mantra we’ve all been seeking?

It is just you and the cereal aisle. The cereal aisle! An entire aisle dedicated solely to cereals! The black, thick-drawn eyebrows on the cavity-laden bunny will narrow. The eyeballs on the honey-licking bear will squint. The hairs will raise on the back of the cardboard tiger. You are going to be swallowed. You cannot escape.

The almond-raisin panic will be all around you now. Breakfast is not the most important meal of the day, you will insist defiantly. It can’t be. It’s not even real food. It’s just sugar and food coloring. But, nothing you can say or do can stop what has already begun. The incomprehensible energy the human race has spent in denying this truth, in inventing more fiber-stuffed guarantees, in reordering our brains to demand a screaming confusion of Monday morning abundance is too great. It will swallow you, and this leaves two possibilities.

You may become the first human to be cereal-killed. Or else, you will walk out of the store, with or without paying, pushing a cart full of cereal boxes, worried only that you have forgotten the milk.

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You are in a White Room: Part Six

Here is the continuation of White Room. Click here for Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, and Part V.

VI

You are now in a white hallway. There is no door but the one from which you have come. At both ends, the hallway turns and of course, you do not know where it leads. You look right, left, you do this several times, and then you begin to walk down the hallway. Your legs are rubber. You worry you will fall and someone will hear you. As you round the corner, there is one second where you truly believe your heart will burst, but it does not. Now, you are staring at an identical hallway with the same posters on the walls, one door ajar in the center, and a turn at the end of it. Your agonizingly squeaky steps lead you to the door, and fighting every instinct you have, you step inside. You are in a white room.

Join me this time next week for Part VII.

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You are in a White Room: Part Five

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This post is in conjunction with the Weekend Writing Warriors blog hop. You can check out some of my fellow writers work by clicking here!

Click Part I, Part II, Part III, and Part IV to see what you’ve missed.

 

V

Your hand is on the open door. Whimpering, begging yourself to be silent, you bring your head around it to peer out. You see a white wall. You hear no sounds. Betraying your gut, you allow your hand to push the door completely open. You see only more of the same white wall. You throw a nervous glance back into the white room and then crawl across the threshold. You are now seated on the floor, your back against the wall in the hallway, hyperventilating. Every ten feet, a poster hangs, orange background, white lettering. The poster reads, “You should not have gone to work today.

Stay tuned for Part VI this time next week.

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