If The Internet Disappeared: Using Human Search Engines
The following is the seventh entry we've published from a journal found in a dumpster in Bayside, New York. Little is known about its origin, but judging from the title "Notes from the Internet Apocalypse, 2013," it comes from the future. Oh, and Gladstone wrote it. We do know that. But the Gladstone we know or future Gladstone? It's almost impossible to say. Nevertheless, it is reprinted here as a cautionary tale ... Day 49: RETURN TO OZ It didn't seem possible that in a world devoid of Facebook, Twitter, and people-finding apps like foursquare, I had somehow managed to locate a 5'5" Australian girl among the four million people still living in New York City. Even stranger, I hadn't recognized her. Oz ran from her tiny glass room, heels clacking in the hallway, and when she burst through my door, kissing and holding me tight, I couldn't help but think of Romaya and the way we loved each other when we were as young as Oz. "For fucks, sake, Gladstone," she said, pulling back suddenly. "Why do you reek of Drakkar Noir?" Her hair was longer now and flowed in California redwood colors without the distraction of store-bought fluorescents. Sexy librarian glasses had taken the place of disposable contacts. And her accent had all but dissolved into a softer dialect of unknown origin. Oz saw the confusion on my face. "What is it?" she asked. "Have you found Tobey? The Internet?" I just stared, unsure of what I was trying to remember. "Maybe we should just get you home, Gladstone. You don't look right, and you smell like a New Jersey mall." Oz filled my head with whispered stories while I slept. Stories about the government releasing her after a brief interrogation; about losing her purse and keys in the arrest; and about how she did visit the hotel in the first three days, but no one answered the door or took her calls. She moved on looking for work and shelter. I was too tired to respond to any of it. Or maybe it was just a feeling of contentment I didn't want to disturb with words. In the morning, I woke with Oz straddling my back. "Wake up, old man," she said. "Time to find the Internet." I rolled over beneath her and placed a hand on each thigh. "First we have to get Tobey. It would be too sad to find it without him." "There's something I want to do even before that," she said and leaned over to put her glasses on the nightstand. The soft of her T-Shirt caught my stubble. "What's that? Discuss your Daddy issues?" "I don't have Daddy issues." I slid my hands further up Oz's thighs until she could no longer pretend to be cool. "In my experience," I said. "You either have Daddy issues or a cock."
Missed the prior installments of Notes from the Internet Apocalypse? Start here. You can also keep up with the latest Internet Apocalypse news on Facebook. And/or follow Gladstone on Twitter. And then there's his site.
To see what the world would do if the Internet disappeared, check out 8 Online Fads You Didn't Know Were Invented Decades Ago. Or get some more G-Stone with 3 Reasons the Ground Zero Mosque Debate Makes No Sense.