On those days when you don’t feel positive . . . fake it until you do!
On those days when you don’t feel positive . . . fake it until you do!
No one can walk in your shoes. Only you have the strength.
Paraskevidekatriaphobia. If you can say it, you can’t possibly be afraid of it.
Life is a reflection of itself.
Ben was paralyzed. He couldn’t move, couldn’t react. He watched in horror as his friend of 30 years was patted down, handcuffed and walked out of the bar in the company of four very official looking men. Four, there were five!
“You can say nothing about what you think you just heard.”
The warning was issued by a quiet, almost friendly voice. But as Ben raised his head to look at the speaker, a chill ran down his back. The man almost seemed to smile. He reached out his hand and picked up the thumb drive that Stan had dropped on the table. Snap, it was gone.
And with a slight tilt of his head, so was the fifth man. Ben inhaled deeply. He felt as if he had been holding his breath for far too long. He started to hear the regular sounds of the bar seeping back into his awareness. It felt as if time was reasserting itself and Ben was out of sorts. It had happened, here, with a room full of witness who had seen nothing. They didn’t understand. He had to tell them. But what Stan had said . . . Could it be true?
Ben reached for his laptop. A good reporter never went anywhere with out it. As he opened the screen and prepared to log on, Ben wondered . . . what if . . . He put his laptop away and reached for a pen and a pad of paper. Old school it is.
The day had stared routinely. Check correspondence, do a little cleaning, a little writing and then down to the pub for lunch. Saturday was Ben’s day to unwind, read the paper, watch a little sports on the big screen. Everyone knew it. So he was surprised when Stan burst into his reverie.
“Ben, Thank God you’re here! You have to help me! People need to be warned!” As he spoke, Stan threw himself into a chair across from Ben and dropped his head into his hands. He looked as if he hadn’t slept in days. He was obviously agitated and Ben got over being surprised enough to reach out to his friend.
“It’s okay, we’ll fix what ever is broken. Just try to calm down and tell me what’s wrong.”
The man that raised his head looked haunted. He reached out his hand and dropped a thumb drive on the table.
“He figured it out.” He whispered, “Then he got proof. He trusted me.”
Ben waited. He knew his friend. He knew he needed to tell his story in his time. But Ben felt a gentle unquiet seep into his mind. This was not one of Stan’s pranks, he was scared, terrified.
Stan slowly looked around the room. Only well known regulars were in attendance. He heaved a sigh.
“I don’t know how much time I have before they get here but you have to get the word out. The WiFi is free.”
Ben chuckled, “Well, yeah! That’s what we all wanted. Free WiFi for everyone!”
Stan shook his head. “Don’t you get it? Don’t you understand? They are listening!”
Ben lifted his glass of ale. “Okay, I’ll bite, who’s listening.”
His glass stopped, mid air. “What computers?”
Stan sat back in his chair.
“Have you ever wondered how Police can get to a bank robbery so quickly when the silent alarm isn’t triggered? Or how a traveller who jokes about a high-jacking can be so accurately pinpointed? How about those calls you get where no one speaks. It’s the WiFi. It’s everywhere. The computers are primed to react to certain word combinations in certain areas.”
Ben heard the words but it was what was not spoken that had him concerned. It wasn’t Big Brother watching, it was Big Computer listening!
Stan seemed to deflate. “I have a computer hacker friend who figured it out awhile back. He collected all his data, his proof. He wanted to take it to a reporter and I suggested you. He gave me a copy.”
Both men looked at the thumb drive. “Where’s your friend?” Asked Ben.
Stan never raised his head. “Dead.” He whispered.
An oppressive silence seemed to hang in the air. Patrons laughed and ate and drank. The big screen droned on about sports and the world continued to rotate. But something intangible had just happened and it was sobering.
Ben opened his mouth to ask a question when five large, official looking men appeared beside their table. Stan started to speak as he tried to stand up but a very forceful hand stopped him. Ben started to protest until a badge was place in front of his eyes. He tried to lean back to read it but it was snapped shut.
Ben was paralyzed. He couldn’t move, couldn’t react. He watched in horror as his friend of 30 years was patted down, handcuffed and walked out of the bar in the company of very official looking men.
The message was clear:
The WiFi is listening . . .
Life maybe difficult, but if you persist you will survive.
If you never start, you will never fail.
This little Blast from my Past was originally posted in March 2014. I think it is still relevant.
I went to university but I never studied aeronautics or mechanical engineering. I don’t understand how a metal cylinder that weighs a thousand tons can fly. But I trust that it will when I buy my ticket. I didn’t go to medical school so I don’t understand the mechanics of the human body. Regardless, I appreciate this soft, spongy envelope that I inhabit. I never studied neurology or psychology so I don’t understand how my brain works. But mine seems to be working just fine. I can appreciate that we are all different even when we all have the same squishy innards. I like that about me, and you.
I don’t understand how some people can hate other people they have never met. I hate beets. I’ve tasted them and I don’t like the flavour. That is a reason to hate something. I’m sure people all over the world love beets; I’m not one of them. When I was a child I hated peas. I didn’t have to taste them to realize they were awful. I hated them because of their name: peas. Why on earth would you name something, that I now know to be delicious, after a bodily function that we don’t like to do in public? What I once believed to be awful, I now know to be awfully good.
Some people hate others simply because of their name or some other label that is ultimately meaningless. How can you hate something or someone you don’t know? Hatred is an emotion that must be taught. It can be taught through actions or through indoctrination or worst of all through words. For the first time in my life I have accepted the fact that there are those who want to kill me simply because I am alive.
This will sound very strange and perhaps self-serving but I don’t hate them back. I wonder at how awful a person’s life must be that their only recourse is to hate. My death will not make their life any better and I don’t think they realize that. My parents never taught me to hate but they did teach me the value of each and every one of us on this planet. I do not believe those people that choose to hate know that. Maybe one day they will.
God is not a destination but a journey.
A gaggle of women
All in a row
But not just for show
Wisdom and insight
We bring to the table
Each day we enable
An insight to God
Is that which we seek
His words that we read
His words that we speak
His guidance is here
We just have to see
Believe in yourself
And the person you’ll be.
Our Father above
In His light do we bask
Smile on us daily
Is all that we ask
Musings of an ex-pat in France.
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I am so glad you have chosen to visit my website and I hope you will continue to come back to read more! You will see that I do believe that a positive attitude can make a huge difference! I truly hope that my website will reassure others that they are not alone with their battles; my goal is to help others!
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