BY MATTHEW DUVERNE HUTCHINSON–
(more from McSweeney’s here)
ME: For some reason, I can’t get this report orb to beam.
HOTSHOT: Well, go ahead and materialize the topaz orb first. That should launch your facefield preferences.
ME: OK, here goes … Wait, remind me, how do I get to the topaz orb? Sorry, I knew how to do this just a second ago—I imagine a shape, right?
HOTSHOT: Kind of. Defocus your eyes and visualize a beam of light illuminating a rhombus. That will materialize the topaz orb.
ME: Hmm … It’s still not working.
HOTSHOT: OK, let’s back up a step. Which wormhole did you do your push-up in?
ME: I’m pretty sure it was Wormhole Gamma. But I did a sit-up. Does a sit-up not work?
HOTSHOT: Oh, you did a sit-up? (Smirk.) Yeah. That’s probably why it’s not working. Try it again.
(I lie down and do a push-up. Immediately, a lifelike 3-D porno hologram materializes in my cubicle with the volume turned way up. Co-workers begin to gather. The hologram depicts me naked on the plank of a pirate spaceship with our company’s robot intern, Suzanne. The scenario is dirty in a way not yet fully describable in our present age.)
ME: Turn it off!!
HOTSHOT: I can’t. You have to double-imagine the red orb to quit out of iPerv.
(I try desperately to materialize the red orb, but instead accidentally launch a hologram chat with my late grandfather from beyond the grave.)
GRANDFATHER HOLOGRAM: Where am I? Who’s moved my reading chair?
ME: Granddad, I can explain. Hold on a sec …
(Swatting at my temples like a fevered gibbon, I accidentally materialize a mastodon diorama, Dabney Coleman, the color green, and John Coltrane’s Giant Steps album.)