Had Mike Allaway lived long enough to write an autobiography [ SPOILER ALERT: He doesn't ]
he might have included a brief passage discussing
his online experiences. In this regard, he might have said something like:
”I don't suppose I ever crossed any real social lines over the Internet. Sure? I trolled a few people out of some weird mix of curiosity and
meanness. Yeah... there were a few Google searches, over the years, that might had made me blush and “X”-out, in a panic, had I imagined my dead
Grandmother looking over my shoulder. But, generally speaking? I never did anything I think would have gotten me arrested nor really harmed anybody
else. Overall, I think my behavior was good enough.”
The above statement, for the record, would have been an adequate and accurate enough, even if inelegant, declaration - had Mike ever made it. I state
this only in passing as it really doesn't matter to the story I am telling, other than to explain why Mike died not only so horribly – but also
filled with such a total and overpowering since of confusion.
A confusion that began just minutes before his death...
Pride is something that many fake, some are addicted to, others pretend to feel, but that most only get to truly experience once every so often.
Tonight was one such night for a man named Michael Stanford Allaway. You can just call him Mike. Everyone does. Well, everyone except for bill
collectors and his former mother-in-law, but those are tales for a different day. Right now we are discussing Mike and his righteous moment of pride!
Jeesh people, keep up! On this
night Mike was all smiles because he had done something that, in his reckoning, only the brave or the foolish
might attempt. He had crossed the Rubicon, slain the dragon, felled the giant, bottled a rainbow, and breathed that rarefied air reserved for heroes,
legends, and demigods.
Mike had installed Linux!
Now, now, now... I know that some of you just got that “punch in the gut” - let down
feeling! Don't try to to deny it. We're all adults
here and many of us are actually reading these words from a Linux based operating system. I can hear your collective “So freaking what” even now -
despite what Einstein has to say on the subject. But I submit, dear tech savvy reader, that you and I are jaded to the Mikes of this world. The vast,
unwashed multitudes who, without a mouse cursor and tech support on the other end of their phone, couldn't even install a simple piece of after market
Alas, it is mine to say. Our poor Mike was a point and clicker.
, dear reader, is why Mike was so filled with pride on that fateful night, as he sat, surfing the web ( currently his dead Grandmother
would have approved of his search topics – had her spirit even the slightest interest in the Grandson she, to herself, referred to as “the one
with the cowlick and the funny nose”. ) over his brand new, self installed Linux Ubuntu O/S!
In fact just using that techie term made Mike giggle.... OH ESS!!! Ahhh. If that evil ex wife of his, and her demonic mother could see him now! That'd
Incidentally, Mike died, that night, totally unaware that his ex-wife was – at that exact moment – checked into a motel cheating on her current
husband, with her other boyfriends best friend. And the much hated former mother-in-law? Well, she died with a terrible flare up of flatulence and
wound up being dinner for her 27 pet cats. Had Mike known these things as he was dying – he might have focused a bit less upon his own confusion and
a bit more on thinking that, maybe, just maybe, there was a just God in Heaven after all. Sadly, however, only we know these details. That is the
benefit of our voyeurism. We get all of the sin, with none of the annoying horrible death. Thinking about it, Dear Reader, you might actually owe me
one here. After all... Thanks to me, It's Mike and his poor choice of a former spouse that we are currently watching meet their horrible ends and not
ourselves. Another writer might not have been so kind as to exclude you and I. So, you are welcome!
Now. Back to our proud friend Mike and his Linux oh ess.
Of course we all know that Mikes pride was also tempered with an underlying fear. Change is a scary thing. Computers, for the uninitiated, can be
very scary things. Jumping into the deep end of the pool when one cannot swim – a very scary thing. Currently Mike qualified for all three of the
above and his fear was lurking just
beneath that sweet veneer of pride. Like one of those sour candies that starts off sweet and then, quickly,
becomes so bitter than one feels as though a pound of alum has been siphoned into ones mouth? Yeah. That was Mikes fate.
In fact, had destiny not gotten sidetracked by other interests, Mike, in all of his pride, was scheduled to find himself with a totally frozen
computer and not the slightest clue as to what to do about it – 47.3 hours after his moment of pride. Had that original script been adhered to, Mike
would have gotten curious and began exploring. Those explorations would have led him into the file system of his computer. Once there he would begin
deleting files he felt were too large, including those necessary for the computer to run. Had the original plan been seen through to fruition, Mikes
beloved computer, now about two years old, would have become a semi-permanent garage ornament that would have been used, exactly once more, ever, as
part of an improvised sawhorse. Given that the sawhorse incident would have seen Mike receive over 150 stitches to a very tender region, maybe the
script change did him a favor?
Incidentally, since I am feeling bad for poor Mike right now. I will also mention that, had things gone according to the original plan, deleting those
files would have actually been the best thing that ever happened to him. You see, after several hours on the phone, arguing with tech support, trying
to convince them that his computer WAS still under warranty, Mike would have made his way to his local 24 hour “SuperCenter” to purchase a new
computer. While there he would have accidentally stepped on the toe of one Sophie Amelia Gaston. After an awkward moment of mutual irritation and
anger, their love for one another would have begun.
The two would have married four months later, in a Twilight themed wedding (her idea), taken their honeymoon to NYC where they would have attended
Wrestlemania ( his idea ), and then they would have gone on to have six children ( the first four both of their ideas
. The fifth, purely his
idea. The sixth? Rumor is that would have been karma having a shot at them both. ).
Divergent time lines. Sometimes they can be so fun to explore.
edit on 16/12/12 by masqua because: Edit by author request