Friday, 30 October 2009


The day the machines climbed out of the ocean the citizens were prepared to some extent.
Elected diplomats waited along coastlines all over the planet with patient, expectant expressions (which seemed almost studied, like affectations for the camera crews).
The machines, although spindly and timorous, were efficient. They moved like insects.
The diplomats called out to them on drizzly beaches. News presenters fainted owing to the gruesome strangeness of what was occurring.
The machines did not have human language. They were wet but not rusty. Brine streamed off them as they emerged in the orange dawn.
The diplomats were shabbily dressed and feckless. The politicians were absent.

Some of the machines towered high into the blank sky like animated scaffolding. They were especially gruesome as they seemed on the verge of collapse.
The machines were sentient. No-one knew where they had come from. Seemingly from the darkest depths of the ocean. What had they been doing there and what had activated them?
April O’Neil was dispatched on the scene wearing her idiosyncratic yellow jumpsuit. A coastal breeze tousled her wavy hair and her cheeks were vaguely flushed. Her eyes glimmered in the alien dawn.

Some of the machines were small two piece structures that glinted in the weak sunlight as they rolled along the shore as if compelled by invisible magnets.

One of the fibrous tubes rolled towards Peter Venkman, the cameraman for one of the cable TV crews. He danced away from it effetely feeling a sharp pang of revulsion. He felt revulsion for many things in his life.
He felt revulsion at the fact he was in debt and drank cheap lager. He felt revulsion that he was ostracised from society for his idiosyncratic religious convictions.
Venkman believed that the universe was created and governed by a gigantic omnipresent sloth that floated through the farthest reaches of space.
The sloth wished for mankind to sleep often and relax.
Venkman’s views had rendered him an object of ridicule and left him nigh-on unemployable.

The machines had been lurking in the deepest reaches of the ocean, in areas unexplored by humans. They had resided here for several millennia in accordance with the obscure plans of the giant benevolent sloth who beamed ecstatic peace across the galaxy.

The obese director milled around with his eyes hidden behind dark sunglasses. He was shabbily dressed in sweat pants and oversized running shoes which buckled under his weight.
Venkman watched him with quiet indolence.
‘Yo Pete, getta tracking shot of that gigantic alien scaffolding ascending from the ocean!’ the director bellowed.

After several weeks of inactivity on the part of the oceanic machines the camera crews packed up and departed. The crowds dispersed.
All that was left were the diplomats, shabby and dishevelled, bearded and forlorn, wandering the desolate beaches and gazing speculatively at the machines which were locked into some sort of abstract ritual or sequence, the significance of which might never be apparent to the human spectators.
The diplomats warmed themselves by constantly smouldering bonfires over which they also cooked fish, heated coffee, and lit cigarettes.
The governments of the Earth had mysteriously absented themselves.
Myriad religious denominations performed idiosyncratic ceremonies.

The machines had started to rust and the sky darkened. A bleak wind drifted sand over the barren shores.
It was suddenly very cold. The embers of fires pulsed in the gathering dusk. The machines creaked and the wind howled and the diplomats sighed. They itched their beards.
It was the end of autumn.

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