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Science Fiction Holiday Funny

Nana Ashley, as Peter called him, tucked Peter into bed and kissed him goodnight on the forehead as the sleep app started tracking neural activity.

She remembered the good old days - when sleep apps could only track how many hours you slept. Those were the 2010s, a wonderful decade indeed.

Melinda had already slept, but Nana Ashley's earbuds (which - as Peter would like to point out, were from the 2020s - a far cry from the ear surgery sound equipment you'd get when you were on the brink of the 2070s) were alarmed left and right in a soundscape that the temperature was below 70 degrees Fahrenheit - and that her granddaughter hadn't worn a blanket.

Technology would've been great. A robot could easily do anything - and she could then bust out an old Kindle. This hologram stuff hurt her eyes. But no, the 2020s happened. Grams and Grads (Grannies and Grandads) are often buzzing with stories of the pandemic, the robot rebellion, and the oversized fruits. Nobody younger than 40 took a word of it as true - but as a man in his mid-60s when I write this in 2072 - I experienced it firsthand. It was crazy. People injected bleach - intentionally - and not by mistake, to fight a virus. The robots glitched. There was a movie which was called the forebearer of truth (I don't quite remember, but that was the Mitchells or something. I watched it when I was in school.)

She had to sleep before midnight though. Today was St. Gamer's Eve. You took out an old PS5 controller - PSP if you're into vintage stuff - and put it there with a big tower case - decorated with acorns and every bit of RGB in the world. This was a job for her - a gal from the 2010s - to use a PC.

Richard, her younger son, started watching sports on his holographic streamer. Sports was still the same kind you got since the last 70 years - big men aggressively running and mauling each other for a rugby ball, commercials of hundreds of medicine brands sprinkled in between. And Ricky enjoyed it for some reason.

"Ricky, go sleep before 12 midnight. St. Gamer won't come delivering the new digital staplers and paperclips or whatever you've been scouring your hologram reader for ages now on business magazines if you don't sleep. And, your PS8 should be on the table - right now!"

Richard snapped out of the projection and frowned as he rode the hoverboard to his bedroom. He was just getting ready for Brian Hopesynth to get the ball right into whatever this game's put-the-ball-here-to-win-the-game mark was. Like all kids of her generation, Nana Ashley wasn't into sports a lot. But then it had to resurge in the 40s - when Rick was born. She frowned.

She went right up to the attic, from where she picked up an old PS5 and dusted it. With it was a custom controller she'd won in a giveaway by Tommy Ringgit or some other fool on YouTube as a teenager. She put it in a tray. They'd picked up a 26-inch full-tower at PC, NOTEBOOK & SMARTPHONE ANTIQUES downstreet after struggling for it against a 90-year-old crazy cat lady.

She then put acorns on top - careful not to disrupt the airflow as Linus, one of her favorite YouTubers as a teenager said - and then draped the thing with RGB strips that she'd stolen when eating at a cafe in South Street. Lastly, she laid on the system a 3090ti she'd gotten for $3k back in the day - graphic cards were so small these days - yet still expensive. She took her son's PS8 and lay it beside the PS5.

She went to sleep the next day. St. Gamer's Day went about as normal as you'd expect. RGB everywhere, praying for the technological pioneers - and then something. Just a normal October 28th. There was a feast - where the centerpiece was pizza. Pizza also stayed normal - old L'Italino style.

-

On the breakfast table, Peter sulked as his access to any non-vintage technology was stopped. He'd have to speak to his friends over a Galaxy Fold 5 - talk about embarrassing. Melinda decided to check out Polaroid - something older than Nana Ashley herself. The camera quality was questionable and worse than the very horrible 124-megapixel camera on the Fold 5. But it came out. Printed photos were another thing that stayed the same old tedious task of stuff.

"OMG Gram, that's so awesome. Thanks, where can I find some more?"

"Well, sweetheart, these are terribly old. Although Mrs. Bardugo was having a yard sale, so I bought a couple of these."

"Thank you so much, Gram!"

Nana Ashley hugged her granddaughter.

"Richard - where in the world are you?"

"MOM, I need a sec!"

"Run fast if you can!"

Richard rushed back to the breakfast table with the thing he'd be waiting for - the printer pen. A one-of-a-kind pen that can print words on normal papers just using ink. He tried it out - and it worked!

Melinda and Peter's parents - David and Selvi were out on a wildlife expedition in Norway. They should've been here, in California, with their children.

"So, kids, wanna learn the story of St. Gamer's Day?"

"Yes, mom, You told us about it. It is celebrated on the day William Gates the third was born to celebrate his contribution to technology. He loved children and so he'd give away tech for free to children. First poor. Then working class. Soon everybody."

"No. According to my Juggle search, St. Gamer's Day is celebrated due to an urban legend that William Gates dressed up as this Santa guy on this Christmas which soon made him his own holiday!" Peter said.

"SILENCE!"

"Sorry, Gram."

"St. Gamer's Day - well I'd say a different story some other time, but -"

"Mom, you lied about St. Gamers?"

"No, I didn't mean to,"

"OK, now all of you. Come with me to the attic. I'll show you how a PC worked.

They all walked up upstairs. Ashley plugged in the power cord and turned on the CPU. The sound came. Ah - nostalgia through her veins. Windows 7 opened up.

She typed on Juggle - "download Space Pinball Cadet for windows 7". Shady old links pop up.

-

A few hours later, we see the family taking turns playing this game. This game is a great unifier.

While yes, it was an urban legend that started the story, the spirit of PC gaming and old consoles was very real, and thus, we end the story of St. Gamer's Day.

June 11, 2021 17:59

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