Siri had joined the two in secular matrimony
Webcam to webcam.
That memory of Val’s bride pulling away from his screen kiss
Circulated in his skull…..
Her lips, her mascara
Her beautiful blur on the screen.
He had made sure to tell her to wipe her lip prints off the screen.
What was she using back then?
An HP or worse? It didn’t matter.
Val was in love ………with
“Winter Witch Rider 2” (Not to be confused with the poser WWR1).
And she was a beauty fit for pixilation
(Even if she needed to update her modem)
Back then, love saw beyond download speeds
And location? Why does that matter?
A ping is a ping and a poke is a poke
Regardless of your IP address
Winter always used a proxy
Winter, his Winter, where was she?
Somewhere in an unknown city
Unknown country, unknown world
(Probably next door, piggybacking on Val’s network)
But, now she was gone, a stranger
Lost in social media.
But, she was not a stranger.
No, no, no,—— definitely not
She had 468 friends on Facebook
143 followers on Tumblr
She was a Mage of Instagram
A pixie of Pinterest, plus
Winter was a tap dancer (well, when she was 7)
A writer of moon haiku
A ranting blogger of superb craftsmanship
She walked through wooded parks that didn’t exist
Full of photos of trees and snow
Uploaded with artistic discretion
Fixed with Adobe’s Illustrator
Why, even once, she
Virtually visited the Taj Mahal!
And it got better!
No one had ever seen below her neck
Why would someone want to?
She was up on all the beauty blogs
And was familiar with the Jedi ways
Of the eyebrow pencil
Ooh, her smile would launch a thousand views!
Who could not fall in love with her?!
But, Val had played it cautiously
Even though, he knew he had
The most beautiful girl on the internet
He had been private messaging her
For over two years.
There was no fooling him.
His wedding had not been rushed into.
It took more than one
Cute Youtube video
To crack his network.
He made sure
She wasn’t a sadistic pack of teenage girls wanting a good laugh
Or a lone fat fruitcake from Walla Walla
Or a troll, or malware, or ransomware, or even Tupperware
Attempting to hijack his browser.
She had to be clean of ITDs
Internet Transmitted Diseases
Two years. Two years it took!
He finally proposed
In a Google Hangout
(Which sounds a bit seedy if you ask me. But I’m just writing this stuff.)
That’s when they decided together
(If that’s possible)
To hire an online pastor.
It just so happened that Siri
Had the capability via the latest Apple update
And the deal was done
Cleanly, without need to
Meet one another and be disappointed
Or to show up two hours before a flight To Oshkosh
That gets cancelled, or…
God forbid drive, trapped inside
A dusty metal can of unconsciousness
Having to worry about the virus called traffic
Or write a letter and use paper! (yuck!)
Do people still use the stuff?
No! This marriage had been right
With a contract signed with the return key!
Their honeymoon had been one dreams were made of
It was full of intimate sexting
Not of the dirty, down low, trashy kind
But, sensitive sexting, between true lovers
Lovers who understood each other.
Ones who knew what an extra o in ooh meant
Or that mmh isn’t a moan, but an acronym
For Meet Me Halfway or Makes Me Horny
No embarrassing grunts or premature ejaculations occurred
Or “I have a headache”. They didn’t exist!
Fuck! The internet is a gift from Pan
Why would anyone want to meet physically?
Val and Winter had a pact.
They were opposed to the physical
Yes, those disgusting physical relationships
That cave people indulged in.
They had names for those creatures.
They called them Grubbies
To think of their dirty fingernails
Touching one another!
The audacity of physicality
Venturing outside and mingling
In cesspools called shopping malls
Bars, clubs, libraries, 24 hour fitness gyms
Where slobber and sweat
Comingled, not to mention the smells.
Val and Winter swore they
Would never leave their homes.
No telling what could happen outside
There might be, God forbid, wind!
Or a cat could meow for no logical reason.
But, that was all in the past
So long ago. Val’s memories weren’t backed up
And if he had been able to visit the cloud
Reliving the life he and Winter had shared
It wouldn’t have been the same.
It just wasn’t real
What was real?
2 long, long days of marriage
And one day of doom
First day marriage, second day honeymoon
Third day, divorce!
Three whole days
(What caused the demise you might ask?
(Egatuo Rewop A)
It started with the snow storm
Even though, Val never went outside
He would check weather reports.
They were kind of fun to look at
Weather sites were filled with unnecessary details
(That’s the kind of stuff the internet was made for)
Fudd was arriving
Weather people love to give storms names
Well, Fudd dumped an immeasurable amount white precipitation
On top of Val’s town, Crud
Knocking out power to Val’s internet connection
He had forgotten to charge his phone
(You thought I’d miss that one didn’t you?)
And the world he knew (or really didn’t know)
This is when desperation set in
If Winter didn’t get a regular message from him
She would think he deleted her
Or worse, made some of their private posts public
The web was no place for wimps
So, he decided against better judgment to brave the wilds
And walk four blocks to a Starbucks
If he could struggle there with a laptop in hand
He could reconnect
And become the Lazarus of browsing
Dressed in three layers of pajamas
That’s all he owned
That’s all he had ever needed
He stepped into the unreal streets.
Snow covered the sidewalks of Crud.
As he looked down the few blocks
He had to traverse
Right away doom awaited him
Just as he thought it would.
He saw a blob moving towards him.
He had read all about such things
On those sites that answer all questions.
He knew about….
Big Foot, Sasquatch, Paul Bunyan,
Babe the Blue Ox. Serial killers, all of them!
And one was heading his way
With a leash in its hand connected
To a familiar, yes those sidekicks called
Idiotic names like Robin, the Boy Wonder
Bert and Ernie, Astro, Kazoo!
Val held his laptop above his head
In an act to strike down his approaching enemy
And at the moment they become close
Sasquatch smiled and Kazoo wagged a tail
Val lowered his weapon.
Shaken, but not fallen, he trudged on
When a branch fell from a tree
And smashed directly in front of him
Was it Treebeard the Ent?
Or a stick Inidan who kidnapped people
And hid them away forever?
He remained stil,l awaiting his death
For one whole minute!
Which is an eternity in internet time
The snow, which had taken a short break, returned
Val thought, what are these?
Evil Insects, flies of the devil?
He began swatting at them with his laptop
It was then, he noticed that he was
Swinging his laptop directly in front of the Starbucks
With power still intact, the people inside
warm coffee in their hands, were
Staring at Val with interest
He barged into the shop proclaiming
“Don’t you see them, Grubbies?” He pointed towards the window
Everyone looked towards the direction he was pointing at
Remaining quiet, with that look.
The look you use when you are dealing
With someone who might do something irrational
At any second.
But, Val hadn’t come to receive stares
Or to listen to the music inside Starbucks
Which sounded like Switched-On Kenny G by Wendy Carlos
He needed wi-fi and he needed it now
It was his right as a citizen of the free world
After ordering a Venti Pike from
A cautious barista, he was back online
The Grubbies forgot all about him
Quickly he signed back onto Facebook
Where a PM was waiting for him from Winter
Inviting him to play a new First Person Shooter game
He had been blocked from her page.
|Elan Mudrow on Readers|
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