A New Beast in our Midst

With all the video games, cell phones, vending machines and ATM’s in our midst, many people would argue humans have lost touch with their wild side forever.

I’ve spent most of my life in metropolitan areas. Though I’ve spent some time on horseback, I’ve spent 95% of my time riding urban public transportation systems instead. I buy my food in boxes, in bags, and heat it at home. Hell, for lunch, I even graze at a salad bar.

A train takes me to my job, which is as far from harvesting my own food and repairing my homestead as a job could possibly be. I work with digital media. CDs and DVDs and the computers that record them are my daily companions. I have an iPod, a few computers, a cell phone, a personal organizer and automated payments. I’m the perfect example of the city-dwelling, half-woman, half-machine that has every day of the week organized to an annoying level.

You could say I’m far from my roots as a savanna-loving homo sapien… you could say that of my co-workers too. So it was pretty interesting to see something quite to the contrary in the middle of my day-to-day technology bustle. I heard quite a ruckus on the bottom floor of our brand-new, giant-sized office. I gazed down from my loft to see a fork-lift pushing a giant machine into the corner of the production area.

Diagonally across from the machinery was the entire assembly crew, staring in wonder. I went downstairs to check it out. A brand new machine that resembles a yellow submarine attached to complete photo-developing station was being hoisted into our midst. It’s a massive tangle of steel and gears, still shining from the factory and looming large over every other machine in our company. I hear tell this was the major reason for moving to our new office. The gaggle of human assemblers were still staring at the great beast.

That’s when I realized what seemed so odd about the bunch…

they were afraid.

This usually loud, chipper, friendly group was quiet, wide-eyed and cross-armed. They were afraid and you could feel the tension in the air. Because I always blurt out the wrong thing, I said, “huh… that’s interesting… I always wondered if creatures could smell their own impending extinction…”

Now I know they can.

Just like in the savanna of old, the shiny machine represented the newer, faster version of beast that could get the job done in half the time. Just like the new, improved man-beast could now reach into the trees for fruit the previous version could not…

1 Comment so far

  1. emotif on May 13th, 2008 @ 5:29 pm

    When John Henry was a little baby boy,
    sitting on his daddy’s knee
    Well he picked up a hammer and little piece of steel
    Said Hammer’s gonna be the death of me, lord, lord
    Hammer’s gonna be the death of mine.

    Ooh ooh that smell Can’t you smell that smell Ooh ooh that smell The smell of death’s around you Ooh ooh that smell Can’t you smell that smell

    It’s kind of cool to know that manufacturing jobs still exist anywhere in San Francisco.



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