Q: Have you ever wondered whether ideas are thought waves directed at you by an AI supercomputer located in the distant future?

A: I can’t say I have, until now at least. Supposing that’s true, I can’t help but wonder if we’re a form of story-telling to them. If our brain activity is directed by intellects beyond our observation, if what we say and how we respond to it is all decided by some other entity, if what we dream and what we do to pursue those dreams is decided by any amount of authorities at least one less than our eight billion, then are we not like characters in some vast story called Earth Circa 2018? I imagine those supercomputers tuning in to some time-piercing TV program to see how this million-year narrative is progressing, what plot twists are unwinding in this eleventy-billionth episode of Mankind. I picture a fair number of fans writing the producers complaining about plot holes and melodrama beloved characters dying unfairly. If that’s the case then I guess I hope that I’ve got someone funny writing the character of me, because if I’m going to be just one mindless side character out of billions with no agency or free will of my own, then I at least want to have some good lines.


Evan Marcroft’s story “The Little G-d of Łódź” was
published on Friday, 2 November 2018.

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