This is a little ditty I wrote yesterday. It actually wrote itself, I just copied it to paper. And it’s a little on the dark side, but whatever.
A Virtual Life
Virtual conception, procreated in a Petri dish, possibly from virtual parents who’ve never met. Virtual birth, broadcast live over the ‘net so that virutal family can share the ecitement of the blessed event without the inconvenience of travel of the annoyance of human interaction with real people.Virtual childhood: computers teaching pre-schoolers their ABC’s and 123’s, virtual playments living in the virtual world of the computer game.
Virtual education, from pre-school to post-doctorate, with teachers, professors, students, colleagues from the four corners of the world, all gathered in front of cameras and computers, sharing virtual ideas and imparting virtual knowledge, without ever having shared the same space, or breathed the same air.
Virtual communication with virtual friends: voice mail, e-mail, test messages sent and received without ever having met the real person behind the virtual images and virtual words.
Virtual friends, virtual lovers, virtual marriage, virtual sex, virtual entertainment, virtual addiction, virtual crime…virtual prison?
Virtual death: online condolences, paid by virtual acpuaintances who have no time or desire to physically comfort those who suffer an all-to-real grief.
Perhaps we just live forever, our virtual selves floating in virtual reality, with virtual pieces of our virtual existence roaming from one server to another without ever being purged, “ghosts in the machines.”
George Orwell wrote of the viewscreen, of the power it would have over society. And here we are.
Is there a real cure for our common virtual disease?
Does it even have a real name?Are we living a virtual life in a virtual world, or are we dead already?