Friday, July 14, 2006


A haze of flame and asphyxiating smog settled over the once-proud laboratory. It was an agonizingly slow wait I had long endured, these past two days. But finally, my mirror-universe counterpart was ready for entry into this, the universe, of all places. Reaching down for my state-of-the-art camera shoe, I was all but knocked off my feet by an electro-static boom.

“You are not an authorized user.”

When the smoke and brimstone dissipated, I saw it. Standing there, my mirror universe stunt double... holding steady, eyes forward. What sort of twisted reverse thoughts were coursing through its backwards brain?

“You are not an authorized user.”

“My mission is to confront you. Will you respond in kind... or do I have to get medieval on your CPU?!”

“You are not an authorized user.” It seemed to completely lack all the intelligence and depth of character that makes me so popular among teenagers and the elderly.

“This is getting me nowhere... slowly.” Then, like so many bolts of lightning to a water tower, a thought raged through my myopic brain.

“Hey,” I nudged Mirror-me. Quickly my eyes darted back and forth in their sockets, ensuring privacy. “I know it’s against the rules, but do you want to... take over the world?! I’ve got a whole bunch of surplus weapons-grade novelty-sized pocket watches that I bought from the Department of Education! We can modify them for chaos!”

For a brief moment I could have sworn I saw a glimmer of understanding in the cold, soulless abyss of his opticals. For the first time, he shifted the position of his cubic head and focused in on me! “You are not an authorized user.”

Grumbling about the countless delays that have set back the release date of Microsoft Vista, I rummaged through my trusty utility belt until I felt the familiar indentation of a creamy nuget bar.

“Hey bizzaro! Catch!” I tossed him half... no, to be fair, it was only about a fifth. A fifth at best; I’m just a greedy candy-bot. I tossed him a fifth of my delicious chocolate nuget bar, hoping that the lad would finally open up to me. I may not be his real father, but I work ten thousand jobs to keep him swimming in motor oil!

Hand outstretched, my identical twin snagged the nuget with snake-like precision. “That’s my boy!” I exclaimed, still optimistic. But then I saw something that almost made me pop an olie.

“You’re left-handed?!

“You are not an authorized user.”

“What kind of sick, demented, depraved... uh, backwards... and, um... bad in general. That’s the kind of universe you come from! A very bad one, one that will probably get destroyed by its own stupidity!”

I fully expected to berate the mindless automaton for the remainder of its time here, but something about its glazed, nonthinking face made me stop.

“Mirror-me,” I asked in all honesty, “you wanna play catch or something? Your mom doesn’t come to get you for another couple of hours. Let’s go do something together!”

“You are not an authorized user.”

“Is that what she’s been telling you?! Filling your head with lies, boy?!”


It’s hard to say which part of that day was the best. Overall, it was the happiest day of my life. After taking Mirror-me to the movies, the two of us went down to Jerry Creek’s, and had some of the best catfish this side of the bayou. And the Weekend section of the Sunday paper had been right on the mark when they said the traveling carnival was a “must see.”

Even when we got rained out, Mirror-me was stoic, blandly repeating “You are not an authorized user” until every last patron at Jerry’s was doubled over with laughter.

“That’s my counterpart! I own him!” I proudly told anyone within earshot.

But as with inhaling dangerous amounts of helium, the fun had to end sometime. I’ll be the first to admit it, I’m going to miss that counterpart of mine. Sending him back to his own universe was the saddest thing I ever had to do. But I hope that one day, he’ll understand why I did it.

Even now, years later, I can still picture his expressionless face as he lumbered into the dimensional gate. Seconds before the tachyons swallowed him up, he turned to me. With a sudden burst of realization, he uttered the words I’d been longing his entire life to hear: “Authorization granted.”

Too late... all far too late...

So I ended up taking over the world with surplus weapons-grade novelty-sized pocket watches.


Blogger A Army Of (Cl)One said...

Is that Tony Blair beign melted by the watch bomb/deat ray/thing, because if so tehn you get my vote for best rice pudding this side of the horseshoe nebula.

And I, My friend, have tired all of the rice puddings on the other side of the horseshoe nebula. They taste like three day old fish, left in the sun and covered with mango gravey.

Thursday, July 13, 2006 11:45:00 PM  
Blogger Professor Xavier said...

To be honest I got a little misty during the part where you and your intellectually challenged counterpart were bonding at the carnival.

Then again, I was dicing onions at the time.

And I think that photo was of Elvis Costello.

Friday, July 14, 2006 8:07:00 AM  
Blogger Gyrobo said...

I'm very proud of the lad.

Friday, July 14, 2006 9:31:00 AM  
Blogger Jon the Intergalactic Gladiator said...

Hey, nice watch!



Friday, July 14, 2006 11:45:00 AM  
Blogger Jean-Luc Picard said...

I thought it was Blair was well. My suspicions are proved right.

Friday, July 14, 2006 12:34:00 PM  
Blogger Lt. Cmdr Oneida said...

Is it really Blair-Blair? There is no wedding ring, the watch looks wrong, and that's rather animated for the British PM. My guess would be some obscure former eastern block politico.

Friday, July 14, 2006 2:48:00 PM  
Blogger Gyrobo said...

No, it's Blair all right. Post-teleport.

Friday, July 14, 2006 3:46:00 PM  
Blogger Professor Xavier said...

Looks like somebody must have just stolen his teddy bear or something.

Friday, July 14, 2006 5:15:00 PM  

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