At midnight all the agents
And the superhuman crew
Come out and round up everyone
That knows more than they do
Then they bring them to the factory
Where the heart-attack machine
Is strapped across their shoulders
And then the kerosene
Is brought down from the castles
By insurance men who go
Check to see that nobody is escaping
To Desolation Row
   —Bob Dylan,
    "Desolation Row"


The silicon chip inside her head
Gets switched to overload
And nobody's gonna go to school today
She's gonna make them stay at home
And Daddy doesn't understand it
He always said she was good as gold
And he can see no reasons
'Cause there are no reasons
What reason do you need to be shown?
   —The Boomtown Rats,
    "I Don't Like Mondays"

There is an electronically-generated blackness that hangs like a curtain around all of us hiding the real world. Speculation is that it is possibly caused by the confluence of electronic interference having reached critical mass among radios, TVs, iPods, cell phones, laptops, GPS units, microwave ovens, remote control devices, and Internet-connected refrigerators. The curtain seems to gain density each night at 6:30 PM when the nightly television news comes on. We all have the mental equivalent of a tiny little laser gun in our brain aimed and fired via direct thought and contemplation with which we can shoot pinholes in the electronic blackness. Sometimes if our aim is good or we're lucky we can put two holes right next to each other and make a slightly bigger hole; then we can barely make out the outline of things outside the blackness if we crane our neck or stoop down low. But we are standing on a revolving platform in the automated mechanical matrix we live in, so to see anything we have to aim ahead and lead the movement of the platform.

It's really hard. Most of the pinholes we shoot are wasted—too low, too high, behind us. A lot of people give up and stop trying and end up forever staring at the eternal blackness. But sometimes an artist, a poet, a singer, a writer, a philosopher—or someone who may be none of these—concentrates all of his or her energies and in a burst of magical creative power will discover a way to shoot several holes touching each other to make a much bigger hole. Then as the platform revolves past, they see a bit of reality clearly for an instant before it flows past in the river of time.

Some people that are towards the rear of the platform can see over the shoulder of those in front of them and will also catch this glimpse of the world revealed by the just-large-enough hole. But invariably a few of them can't handle such an insight into reality, and the silicon chip microprocessor in their brain switches to overload and automatically trips a circuit breaker. The electronic doctors from the control center in the castle overlooking the matrix don't like to continually send out their technicians to reset circuit breakers, so they have the person responsible for penetrating the curtain brought in to the repair room and operate on them. They remove the original microprocessor in their brain and replace it with a socially reconditioned one so they can no longer shoot holes in their beloved curtain of darkness big enough for others to see through.

       —Zimmerman Skyrat,