A Story for Patricia: In the Hopes That It May Cheer Her Up

Yamagata Hiroo <hiyori13@alum.mit.edu>

My friend Patricia came up from down under the other day with Peter for an exhibition at ICC (which was quite good). This was fun and cool. And then, she went back, and realized that the seasons are all skrewed up down there. She also forgot that Australia was quite close to Antarctic. This is more than cool, it's rather cold. So she wrote;

I'm back from the city of greed (KL) and the land of plenty (Nihon) and I'm sitting here in non-virtual reality and it stinks.
back to my messy desk where my hands seem to only hover over the keyboard as my fingers stick together from the cold- so much to type so little thought
I'm dreaming of long days and warm nights
tell me somthing to cheer me up

Well well, ain't she demanding. Talk about pushy dames.... OK Patrica, I will tell you a little story to cheer you up. This is called, "The Old Man and the Cherry Tree."

The Old Man and the Cherry Tree

Once upon a time, there was an old old old man, and a much older cherry tree (trees live longer than humans[1], did you know that? Isn't that annoying?) This was in Australia, where in some other time, Patricia was sitting at her messy desk where her hands seemed to only hover over the keyboard as her fingers stuck together from the cold - but that's another story.

Anyway, it was winter in Australia where the old man and the tree were. It got very cold, and the old man (who was poor and was considered to be insignificant ((Australia was already a capitalist country then))) decided to cut down the old tree to use as fire wood.

When the old man came out with the ax, the tree saw what was coming, and started thinking, "Ah, bullshit, I gave him shade, I gave him flowers, I gave him fruits which provided extra income, what did I do to him to deserve this," and so, it wanted to say to the old man, "You thankless good-for-nothing dying creature, what the fxxk do you think you are going to do with that thingie, just because you have legs and can move doesn't make you better you know, haven't you heard of the Plant rights movement? Now go back to your miserable shack you call a house and stay there untill I call!"

Now, the tree was like 800 feet away from the shack. Like, a minute's distance. With the snow and the weak legs of the old man, it took another 6 minutes. If the apple tree was a human, it would have finished blabbering away the above thoughts more than 10 times using multiple fonts. But of course, a tree lives longer because they act slower, including their thoughts. By the time the old man got to the tree, it was still in the process of thinking, "Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, bbbbbbbbbbbuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu llllllllllllllllllll ssssssssssssssssssssss hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh..." Poor thing. You don't want "bullshit" to be the last thought in your head when you die, not even if you are a tree.

The old man started to use the ax, but fortunately, took a long long time, because he was, after all, weak and old and dying. So, the bullshit phase passed, the thinking process went through, and the tree finally managed to blurt out the words through it's mouth, which is located 5 feet above the ground. This was achieved through the miraculous advancement of gene splicing and bio technology, which the former-mentioned Patricia would have known a lot about.... but as I said, that's another story.

So, the old man heard the tree, and tried to talk back. But of course, he was tired, panting, was in no condition to whip out any witty remarks. But he understandably became very upset, so he tried anyway. "Don't give me that crap, of course I've never heard of 'plant rights' movement you idiot, there is no such thing, you helpless plants have no rights at all! Now listen you immobile piece of garbag..." and then he realized that he'd never heard a tree talk before, and that it is very very VERY unusual for one to do so. He was illiterate, so he didn't know about the wonderful achievements of modern technology. Should've subscribed to Scientific Australian, but too late. He became very scared.

With the cold, fatigue, anger, fear, confusion, all combined into one fatal stroke, the old man died on the spot. Sad old sorry guy.

The tree, being a selfish tree, didn't share this sentiment of our readers, and was very delighted and happy. "Ha! There you go! What did I tell ya!" Well, in case you haven't noticed, it told nothing of the sort.

So I guess we'll have to punish the tree for bragging about what it actually didn't do, so what it didn't realize was that the old man's ax got far enough to cut the sap from the root. So the old man wasn't alone, the cherry tree also died soon after. The cherry tree would be rather unhappy about all this and would have complained quite bitterly, but since it was dead, we don't have to bear those sort of useless nonsense.

And then, spring came. And everything flowered and blossomed and was warm and lively and great and happy and everything, except the old man and the cherry tree, but then, they were old anyway and would have died anyway within a year or so, so the author decided that it wasn't too big a loss for the world, and considering the welfare benefits that the old man was wasting away, it might even have a positive aspect, but then, the bio-engineered cherry tree was admittedly a major achievement and THAT was a big loss for humanity, because it would have opened up a vast new industry and possibilities were endless, and hey, think of all the things you can do with it, gods[2], how awful, what a nasty and selfish person that old man was to hoard such a brilliant technology just for himself, so I guess he deserved to die, but then, how the hell did he get to live this long, where's the justice in all this?[3]

So this is the end of the story and I'm pretty upset that it actually got nowhere and just further proved that there is no justice in the world and didn't even have a good moral to it, and I'm pissed, and I guess you'll find that rather amusing and hilarious, and that may have cheered you up a bit, or did it? Oh, I guess (unlike myself) you don't have that sort of twisted sense of humor ... but then, don't tell me I haven't tried.

The end.


Hmmmmm..... Should I write "humen?" Nah, doesn't look right...

Ah, come on, of course this isn't a typo, you ethno-centric arrogant cult worshipping whatever, typos are for wimps. This is intentional, it reflects the fact that we have like eight million gods in Japan, which can all be substituted depending on your purpose. Unlike some pathetic religions that only have one, the notion of "Short Duration Personal Saviour" is not a dream or a joke, it's a reality here today. Let's say that Japanese religion is more modular, sort of like a microkernel, and others are monolithic, like Linux. Of course, everyone knows that microkernel OSs beats Linux hands down. Well, Andy said so...

Where's the justice in all this?
... Like, does the word "duh" mean anything to me? Probably not.

Yamagata Hiroo <hiyori13@alum.mit.edu>