All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned by reading the Sprawl Series by William Gibson. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in Matrix, where knowledge hits you like a video game.
These are the things I learned:
- Share everything – unless it’s from the Wig. It usually brings a good price
- You don’t have to play fair if you have Hideo
- Don’t hit people unless it’s with a recoilless rifle and a box of incendiary shells
- Put things back where you found them – unless you’re the kind of jockey who tangles their gear
- If your name isn’t Lady 3Jane, clean up your own mess
- Don’t take things that aren’t yours, especially if they belong to a couple of Bigtime Sprawl oungans
- Say you’re sorry when you use Gerald the dentist to provide a body … fairly good condition and close to target configuration
- Wash your hands before you lick your fingers
- Flush the toxin sacs from your bloodstream
- Warm wheat cutlets and cold krill pizza are good for you
- Live a balanced life – walk accompanied by a tiny Dornier helicopter that rises from its unseen rooftop nest, cook for yourself in the white kitchen, thaw bread in the microwave
- Take a nap every afternoon – I got derms’ll put you under all the way, one hour on the button
- When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and know what kicks you into jail-time
- Be aware of wonder. Remember, they had you over the railing, man. The thermals go down and the powerplants go up and nobody really knows how or why, but you can still get good shrimp in the projects
- Constructs and Ashpools and Omaha Thunder and General Girling – they all die. So do we
- And then remember the wasp’s nest and how it was constructed. It’s the closest thing you got to what Tessier-Ashpool would like to be
- Everything you need to know is in the Matrix somewhere: The Golden Rule, love and basic sanitation. Ecology and politics and equality, Wintermute and Rio. They’re all in mankind’s unthinkably complex consensual hallucination
Take any one of those items and extrapolate it into sophisticated adult terms and apply it to your kobun, your family life, or your work or Sense/Net or your Mass Neotek console and it holds true and clear and firm.
Think what a better world it would be if we all – the whole Matrix – had cookies and milk at about 3 o’clock in the afternoon and then lay down with our blankies for a nap. Or if all zaibatsus had as a basic policy to always put things back where they found them and develop their own biosofts.
And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out in cyberspace, it is best to use Jammer’s deck and jack together.
(Today’s post is decided to @) and to William Gibson (@GreatDismal)