Curious Letter on a Rainy Day

by phil on Saturday Jan 8, 2005 10:11 PM

The weather has been unusually torrential and windy in California. Water stains have formed in previously unreachable places. I wonder if the levee hasn't broken in the heavens.

In the afternoon, the walls of water paused and gave way to a break-through. Clouds parted and sunlight beamed into the wet black roads, creating a gigantic mirror. The sun was at the right angle so that its reflection ignited my room in brighter-than-daylight shimmer. I felt like I was trapped in a prism; it was beautiful. The shine eventually burned my eyes, forcing me to shut the shades.

This was my opportunity to slip outside and check my mail. Inside was one soggy letter. It had no return address and no stamp. Just my name in the center. "This must be another community solicitation," I thought.

Instead, I got this strange letter:

Dear Philip Kumar Dhingra,

This letter is to inform you that you may be unplugged from the Simulator soon.

While your sense of time informs you that you've been logged in twenty-two years, eight months, and umpteen minutes, you've only been physically hooked in for twenty milliseconds.

You chose the Authnntttix Simulator, placing you in a world mostly equivalent to the world of our MOSH ancestors (Mostly Organic Substrate Human). This Simulator is one of the least frequently played Simulators due to its harshness. All the original pain and emotional spectrums of our MOSH ancestors are intact and undiluted. Before you entered the Authnntttix, you, like everyone else, were aware of the dangers. There were many warnings and disclaimers, all of which you accepted. Perhaps it is your curiosity that brought you to desire the ancient experience first-hand.

Most don't log into the Authnntttix naked, meaning without any alterations or assistance. Most also don't go without some enhancers to make things interesting. A purely naked experience would be purely historical and dull.

So you asked to be born with a silver spoon in your mouth, to be ethnic, and to have an ENTP personality (as best described by the Authnntttix construct of "psychological typology").

While your character has been enmeshed in the swampy milieu of Authnntttix living, you have not risen up and completed your primary mission. You've been sinking and rising up for air, but never have you maintained a good swim and rhythm for longer than six months.

I'm sorry to be vague, but to give away your mission guidelines would defeat the purpose of the Simulation. The Authnntttix, which, being true to the original MOSH lifestyle, does not allow its characters to read their mission specifications explicitly.

In addition, you instantiated your character with skepticism, thus making your task even more challenging. For example, other characters in the Simulator have depended largely on their elders for clues to their mission specs. Most have grasped the totem of God, and have used the conveniences of that thinking paradigm to gain inference. Your character, on the other hand, rejects most things prima facie, and then waits for a convincing explanation before acceptance.

Note, though, we've made it impossible now, for you to infer your mission specs through God.

Nonetheless, your character has gone through the learning cycles successfully. You've gained many experiences, developed unique skills, and have made an impact on other characters in the Simulation. You've completed an above-average amount of sub-missions, and an excellent amount of the bonus missions.

Like we said before, most do not choose to swim the Authnntttix naked, and so you asked for a few lifesavers should your course go awry. Some of those lifesavers are likely to be triggered soon.

One of the lifesavers is this letter.

Good luck, even though luck has no bearing in a place like this.

—Authnntttix Rep.

It's certainly brilliant. Not the Matrix stuff, but the intuition of the author that I would jive with all of its ideas, such as MOSH and Simulator. I'm a little surprised at the spelling of Authnntttix. Not too many people know that I name my characters in video games in hard-to-pronounce formations, such as mcvllooo. And of those that do know, none of them have the interest to write something like this.

The letter did say I was a skeptic though.

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