Wednesday, June 15, 2011

If Today Were Tomorrow

I plop down on the couch, toss my head back, close my eyes and massage my temples with my thumbs as my hands shield my eyes from the overhead light. I breathe out a deep sigh. The familiar strains of the evening news' theme begin playing on the television.

It can't be 11:00 already. I raise my head and look to see the news anchor scribbling notes and then through the kitchen doorway to assess the mound of pots and dishes arrayed by the sink.

Another sigh. The dishes can wait til tomorrow.

I return my attention to the news anchor who says, "Good evening! It's Wednesday, June 15, 2011 and here's what's happening in your world."

I think aloud, "As if you know."

The news anchor's demeanor changes as he says, "Oh, but I do know."

The ceiling lights dim, then brighten, then dim, then brighten, then... darkness. I stand straining to bring anything into focus. I peer out the window and see that the entire neighborhood has lost power.

As my eyes adjust, I notice that the moon is nearly full, so I pull back the curtains and the room is flooded with cool, blue light that provides ample visibility to navigate the toy-strewn family-room floor. As I take a step toward the kitchen to retrieve a flashlight, I see however that the toys are no longer there.

I search blindly through the catch-all kitchen drawer seeking the definitive cylindrical shape of the emergency flashlight wondering when the last time was that I checked the batterie. Just as I find it, the lights blink on. Squinting, I drop the flashlight into the drawer as I raise my hand to shield my eyes from the now too-bright ceiling light.

My headache is gone.

Back in the family room, the sounds of the evening news' theme begin again. Did they reset to accomodate the power outage?

I decide that I'd better tackle the dishes now rather than waiting until morning, but the sink and surrounding counters are completely empty. The news anchor begins his spiel, but his voice is wrong; it's female.

I walk back to the family room. Leaning against the doorjam, I see the alternate anchor as she says, "Good evening! It's Tuesday, June 14, 2011 and here's what's happening in your world."

I say to her, "OK, you've got my attention."

She says, "Tonight's top story: at a press conference held just moments ago, scientists at MIT announced that due to a miscalculation in an experiment being conducted in nuclear fusion, as of 11:00PM Eastern Daylight Time, today will have become tomorrow. Although the event will go unnoticed by most, a very small portion of the population will retain their knowledge of the previous twenty-four hours, effectively being able to see into the future. And the question on everyone's mind is, 'With that knowledge, what will they do differently?'"

If today were suddenly to become tomorrow, what would you do differently?

With whom would you spend less time? With whom would you spend more time?

Whom would you treat differently? How?

What would you not have said? What would you say that you didn't?

What lies would maintain? What truths would you reveal?

What would you do that you didn't do? What would you not do that you did?

If today were to suddenly become tomorrow, would it make any difference at all?

Happy Wednesday, err... Tuesday

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