Listening Devices

It is my daily routine to open the computer & check favorites & newsy blogs. I saw the “update” button on the power screen, that tiny orange malevolency indicating such a highjack coming soon. I hit it last thing last night, hoping it would be over by morning.

But it wasn’t over, it just ran out the battery. I plug it in to 18% completed but “Still updating…don’t turn off your computer.”

I believe it’s true that Bill Gates introduced the idea of getting a “virus” & this requiring periodic “updates.” My best guess is some AI team in Nevada or Arizona, sitting in an underground room where (if they breathed) they could see their breath. I see their lighted silver fingers walking through my files. What will they do with poetry & prose, with editorial letters & preachy emails? Will they yodel to discover fiery youtubes about health & wealth & mankind’s skirting the lava plane of an active volcano? Will their tiny lights grow brighter? I’m still at the back of the threat line, yeh?


I am rambling around the point of this blog but arrival is at hand.


What, exactly, is happening to my computer? And how can I get to the point where I simply pluck information from the ethers as do so many of the folks I follow? If I can’t get the goods on creation from this vivid mountain air & this exceptional light, why do I hope to glean it from a machine?

The laptop is snuggled up to my leg like an indoor cat. I glance at it as I read my book. It is not an alive thing. It’s a package wrapped in brown paper, left on the peeling porch.


This computer (embarrassingly code-named “mylove”) [which name seemed foolish even to me until I saw a friend had named hers “beloved.”] must be given over to the nerdy A.I. in training, the one still needing corrective lenses to connect to humans.

The person who said “Three’s a crowd” had that practical wisdom thing going. I am speaking here of a machine, essentially a toolkit / file unit. It’s a comm device. Why would I not be comfortable wondering if nascent Big Brother knows he has a crowd reading over his shoulder?

(Sitting in that large warehouse room in a form-fitted, chilled cubicle, its green eyeshade canted just so to filter my frontier light, bionic fingers fluttering along a narrow, inky tape of my efforts to stay informed…)

22% still.

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