:: Tuesday, February 1, 2005 ::
It has been nearly eight months. Of
course, the Authority will not say. But I've kept track with a
calendar I hung on the wall shortly after. Seven months,
twenty-eight days, precisely.
:: Wednesday, February 2, 2005 ::
Sometimes I'll walk into Father's room and still
expect him to lay in his reclined easy chair, studying his crossword
puzzle. I took Mother's paintings off the living room wall
months ago, but I cannot shake the image of her standing in the
doorway, arms crossed, just admiring at the pictures she took of me
when I was a small child. A few months after it happened, the
feeling of intense grief and hopelessness seemed to release its hold a
little. I thought it was gone, but lately it's started again.
I experience these episodes a few times a week now. Upon
snapping back to the real world and realizing that I will never see
them or hold them again, I don't feel it right away. I'll just
stand still for a couple of minutes, struggling to feel anything.
The grief, it just cripples you. Upon returning from the coal
dig last night, I caught myself yelling, "Mom, I'm home" as I opened
the front door. And I just stopped. I must have stood in
the doorway for five minutes. Then I heard the shriek of the
siren of an Authority van driving by outside, and I was ripped out of
my fantasy world which one year ago was my real world. I
thought, "I just want to dream forever. I want to dream until I
die." I let go of my hard hat and duffel bag; they hit the
hardwood floor with a dull clank.
I began to cry.
Apologies. I don't think I really
introduced myself or explained what I'm doing here. My name is
****. I created this blog as soon as I could secure Internet
access. Don't let my melancholy disposition fool you; my recent
discovery that the Internet is, in fact, still largely intact has
lifted my spirits.
:: Friday, February 4, 2005 ::
An Authority agent
came by the other day. I traded him a pack of cigarettes for an
ISP account. He said, "No promises, it's kind of an insecure
connection, and the blackouts sometimes take you offline for a few
hours until it re-calibrates." I told him, "No promises, those
smokes were in my dad's dresser drawer for like a year." He
replied, "Kid, these days I'd smoke dog shit. Just gimme a
light, know what I mean?"
He's about my only friend anymore. I
feel weird calling him my friend; technically speaking, he's the block
administrator who prevents me from leaving this district of the city.
But friends are few and far between here. I hardly have a chance
to make any at the coal dig -- if they see you talking, they'll put
you out of a job.
I don't know, everything's relative. If
you had told me one year ago that I'd soon be digging coal for soup
packets, I'd have scoffed at you. Of course I would have,
because a year ago there was no coal mine anywhere near here.
I suppose * * * * * * * has a way of
Ooh, there must be a word censor in effect.
I guess we're not allowed to talk about the Event. The Internet
must be corporately run by the Authority these days. Let me try
a censor test real quick:
:: Sunday, February 6, 2005 ::
SHIT = Check.
* * * * * * * * * = Censored.
n-u-c-l-e-a-r = Check.
* * * * * * * * * * * * = Censored.
p-r-o-p-h-e-c-y = Check.
BOOBIES = Check.
* * * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * * = Censored.
r-o-b-i-n y-o-u-n-t = Check.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * = Censored.
m-a-s-s h-y-s-t-e-r-i-a = Check.
I imagine the the uneducated reader would
question what a baseball player would have to do with the end of the
world. That's pretty funny. Ah well, I don't care to talk
about the Event; it saddens me. All of you were there to suffer
it anyway, I'm sure you don't need a history lesson.
I am censoring my own name for obvious
reasons. One does not give out his name in these times.
:: Monday, February 7, 2005 ::
I was talking to the Authority block admin
today. He told me that as a result of uprisings in districts
worldwide, the Authority has begun an effort to flush the Internet of
conversation between resistance loyalists. "What do I care?"
He was incredulous. "Do you even
remember what happened? Do you even realize that it was probably
the Authority who brought about the Event?
"Why are you even saying this?" I
"I don't know...I don't know. Just
forget I said anything." He took a drag from his cigarette, took
a few steps away, then hesitated and turned himself back around to
face me. "So...all these things that are happening. You
don't care? You aren't angry?"
"Why be angry?" I replied. "I prefer
not to think about it, it keeps me numb. My family and friends
are all dead or gone. I can't change that. I vomit every
morning from the radiation sickness that will not leave me. I
can't change that. What's the point of rebelling? The
Authority is our best hope right now. They're the ones keeping
He gave sort of a sick, sad chuckle.
"You wouldn't say that if you've seen the shit I have. I bet you
think that coal dig you're working at is a shit job, right?
You're lucky you're even getting those soup bricks at all. St.
Louis, Denver, Oklahoma City. Those places are under siege, my
friend. Nobody has any food. Nobody can leave. It's
only a matter of time before those people die."
"Well, yeah. Because the Imperial
troops are keeping everyone trapped, right?"
"Yeah. And guess who rolled over and
let them do it." He gestured to the patch on his uniform.
"The Authority doesn't care. They were supposed to defend us
after the U.S. government fell, and they just let Imperial troops wash
up on our shores unchecked. We could have put up a fight, but we
didn't. We're a bunch of crooks, man. A bunch of fucking
"No way. All I've heard from people is
that they're the ones protecting us," I said to him. "Life isn't
great right now, but at least I'm not starving, and at least our
electricity's restored. I have the Authority to thank for that."
He shook his head. "You can keep your
head in the sand all you'd like, I suppose. But it's not going
to last much longer. I imagine all this will be Imperial
territory by the end of the year."
"Look," he said as he pulled something out of
his pocket. Before he did, he looked to make sure that nobody
else was around. "Here, take this."
I was in shock.
"How in the hell did you get that? That didn't have a release
date until, like, six months after the Event!"
important," he told me. "The Authority watches the entire
Internet now -- except for Half-Life servers. They haven't yet
found a way to monitor it anonymously." He looked around again,
this time a little nervous. "This is how the resistance
communicates. Get on a server and set up a meeting. Learn
what you can. That's the important thing, that's the first step.
You have to know what's really going on."
I plan to install
the game tonight, after the final door-to-door security check at 10
PM. We'll see what this is all about.
I've come to an important decision:
:: Tuesday, March 16, 2005 ::
Fuck the resistance. This is fun!
Although I'm not very good yet. :-/
I spent at least
half my time in this position, lying dead on the ground. Oh
well. I'll get better.
Hey all, sorry I've been neglecting this blog
lately. It's just that a certain game is as addictive as crap.
It's so awesome, I've been playing it every night. I even joined
a clan, "Clan Bitchfukk"! Sometimes we'll get on a server and
just run shit like crazy.
:: Friday, April 2, 2005 ::
Things aren't all perfect, though.
Half-Life 2 has such high system requirements that almost nobody can
run it on anything but the lowest settings, especially in a post-Event
world.. I have a 1.5 GHz AMD Athlon with 512 MB RAM and a Radeon,
and even I should consider myself lucky -- at least I have a broadband
connection. One guy from my clan uses an Apple II with a
2800-baud modem. Another uses a TI-83 graphic calculator and
uses Morse code to report his movements to the server. And my
homeboy Ben uses an abacus stapled to a Lite Brite. He just
shouts binary code into a Styrofoam cup, which he attached to the
server four miles away with a piece of waxed string. His latency
is about 4 million.
None of that matters, though. I'm so
glad to be playing this game. It's really nice to be able to
escape this violent, post-apocalyptic world and play in a different
violent, post-apocalyptic world for a few hours. This game is
like crack! I'm so happy all the time! I can't even
remember what I was sad about!
this shit's awesome, our clan fukin pwns.
we've been playing HL:DM almost nonstop. the other day we went
on a server where i guess a bunch of resistance guys were holding
their meetings or something. we sk00led them hardcore.
here's a transcript of the conversation we had.
:: Tuesday, May 6, 2005 ::
Savage Messiah: Remember, brothers and
sisters. Do not rise up against your neighbors, or those who do
not understand. Rise up against those who are guilty. Rise
up against the Authority, and rise up against the Imperial army.
Dissident_ghs: What are our current numbers?
Savage Messiah: We estimate that our brothers and sisters
to the North have raised an army numbering in the tens of thousands.
They work covertly now, without weapons, but their service is just as
noble. Our Indianapolis fortress has, as of last word, managed
to repulse Authority strikes, but I fear that the worst attacks are to
come. It is a matter of time before the Authority gains control
over the Old Army. Now they have only foot soldiers, guns and
grenades. Soon they will have tanks, and mortal shells. It
is imperative that we strike soon.
bitchfukk_ben: YO WHATS UP FAGGETS
bitchfukk_josh: WE'RE HERE TO PWN UR ASSES
Savage Messiah: Please, friends! We mean no harm.
We are servants of you and all free people.
bitchfukk_b1tchb0y: I DONT GIVE FUCK ABOUT U HOMO
we wasted their asses it was fukkin
awesome. i caught "savage messiah" as he was trying to type.
they didnt get to finish their meeting!
awww poor babies GOT FUKKIN SK00LED
:: Wednesday, May 8, 2005 ::
Today as I was coming home from the coal
dig, I heard a gunshot from across the fence barrier which divides the
district. Nobody is supposed to have guns here; I had to know
what was going on. I waited for the security officers to finish
their patrols, then snuck over the fence. I followed the first
road I saw.
A few hundred yards later,
I found my Authority friend. He was face down in the middle of
the town square, his uniform saturated with blood. I ran to a
nearby house and asked what happened. According to their
account, he was brought in handcuffs to the public square nearby, and
made to stand as a superior Authority officer read charges brought
against him: conspiracy against Authority, conspiracy to conspire
against Authority, distribution of Half-Life 2. Without a word,
he was shot twice in the back, and left to lie there.
I am not very strong, but I picked up his body
and carried him to the nearest field. I dug him a hole, in a
spot curiously surrounded with wildflowers, and as gently as I could,
I lowered him to his grave. I pulled out a pencil and piece of
paper I managed to smuggle out of an Authority office a few months
ago, and wrote him a note. I told him that I was sorry for
accepting his tool for freedom and using it to waste time on the
Internet. I promised to him that I would be different, that I
would pick up his cause and keep hope alive, and then I folded the
paper and put it in his breast pocket. As the sun fell, I found
a couple of sticks and used them to make a crude-looking cross.
Was he religious? I don't know. I didn't really know what
to do. I had no experience with burying people -- all of the
people I had lost were always loaded into an Authority van, dead or
alive, and never seen again.
feeling akin to waking up from a dream. I've been spending far
too much time playing with my clan. And I can never go back now.
Today it happened again. I opened the door and called for my
dog. It took me fully five seconds to remember that he would
:: Wednesday, May 9, 2005 ::
As I feared, explaining my
newfound purpose to my fellow clanmates was not an easy thing to do.
bitchfukk_****: Hey guys.
There's something I need to talk about.
bitchfukk_b1tchb0y: lol are u gay
bitchfukk_josh: lol ur comming out of the closet???????
bitchfukk_****: I've realized something. There is a
war going on, a war for our freedom and well-being, that is being
fought for us by people we do not know. And we are impeding
their progress. Half-Life 2 Deathmatch is the Resistance's only
means of communication. And when we disrupt that, we are dooming
bitchfukk_****: I understand that it's sort of
uncomfortable to think about. But we need to lay down our guns.
As much as we would like to stay in this virtual world forever, if we
do nothing, there will be no world left for us at all. Come on,
let's stop disrupting Resistance meetings, and fight for something
bitchfukk_b1tchb0y: FAGGIT FAGGIOT FAGGIT FAGGIT FAGGIT
FAGIT FAGGIT FAAGGIT
bitchfukk_ben: lol b1tchb0y fukkin pwned ur sorry ass
bitchfukk_****: Please! Don't you see? We've
just been living our lives with our heads buried in the sand!
bitchfukk_b1tchb0y: IVE BEEN PART OF THIS CLAN
FOR 25 YEARS AND IT'S ALL I KNOW. SO FUKK U BITCH
bitchfukk_b1tchb0y: UR FUKKIN DEAD TO ME
It appears as though I am alone.
Today, I entered the Half-Life 2 server not as a
combatant, but as someone who was ready and willing to learn. I
came across a Resistance fighter.
****: You should get out of this
hallway, it's a fucking death trap. Someone can shoot a death
electricity ball or crossbow dart from either end of the hall and
you'll be toast.
DaDeO: It matters not. If I die, the Resistance
still lives. Plus I can respawn in another five seconds or so.
****: That's true. Anyway, I'm an ally of the
Resistance. I'd like to help you.
ballSACK: fuckin lag
DaDeO: Then welcome, brother! I embrace you with
****: What can I do to help the cause?
DaDeO: We have labored for months to broker a conference
between leaders across the globe. There are nations worldwide
who sympathize with the plight of the Resistance, and some rogue
governors here in the old United States are secretly loyal to us as
well. If we all coordinate our efforts, we can spring our forces
on the Authority and the Imperials like a trap.
DaDeO: Although the Resistance sympathizers collectively
outnumber Authority and Imperial forces, they are too timid to attack.
They must know that other nations are with them. Only together
does the world stand a chance of toppling these behemoths.
dickface: oh bs i shot u like 10 times
****: Then contact the leaders! Set up a meeting!
Here, in this server!
DaDeO: It's not that simple, I'm afraid. We lack
the means to close this server to outsiders, so a contingent of guards
must be on hand. Not to mention the raw logistics of holding a
meeting for global dignitaries. We're going to have to set up
chairs and stuff. The problem is that we can never get a moment
of peace from the mindless horde of Half-Life enthusiasts. They
are a plague of locusts upon our cause. I'll get chairs and
tables and everything set up, and they come through and mess it all
****: Let me try. Cover me.
DaDeO: Wait! Wait until the server changes maps.
There are more chairs in the other map.
****: Oh. Good idea.
DaDeO: SHIT LOOK OUT
The burst came from behind before either of
us could find cover. We were killed immediately.
DaDeO: Remember what I told you, brother! Keep
those chairs upright! Two rows of five! Podium stage
DaDeO: fuck this gay shit i'm out
I was alone.
When the server
changed to the new map, I immediately set to work. I gathered
the all the chairs I could find at a feverish pace.
Standing them up
turned out to be the hard part. For what seemed like an
eternity, I picked each chair up with my gravity gun, threw it against
a wall, and hoped that it landed upright.
however, I was making impressive progress.
But it was only a
matter of time before I was confronted. Defying my most
heartfelt pleas, I was cut down by the likes of Trash.
I was not going to
accept defeat. Upon re-spawning, I returned to my chairs and got
back to work. Trash watched me for a bit, failing to
I paused to type out
my explanation of what I was doing. I was barely 200 words into
it when he destroyed myself and my work with a rocket launcher.
Minutes later, the
dignitaries showed up. They were greeted by my virtual self,
bloodied and still scrambling to set chairs upright. And of
course, the Half-Life 2 ignorami would not refrain from killing them
while they were trying to type. They would scurry to dark
corners to hide, and hit the "jump" button repeatedly in an effort to
convey to their attackers that they were not interested in a fight.
But their cries were not heard. The leaders of the world left
without an alliance agreement, and I am to blame.
:: Tuesday, February 10, 2004 ::
I imagine that my
failure will result in the realization of a new world order. In
a matter of months, my already menial existence will likely be snuffed
out. And I can't help but ask the question, "why wait"?
I'm going upstairs
to visit my parents' bedroom. I'll spend some time looking
through their wedding album, and some of the pictures I drew when I
was a little kid that they saved for me. I'll examine the
slowing tick of Father's favorite wristwatch. Perhaps I'll open
Mother's diary and read the entry again that she wrote when I was
born. That's my favorite part.
I don't suppose I'll
ever come out.