Thursday, July 22, 2004

What could possibly go wrong?SCENE:  A group of scientists digging up ice in the Antarctic.  Cold, nighttime.  Pan to inside the dig tent.  Players:  Rolf, the serious-minded German geologist, who really wanted to join the ballet at a young age, but couldn't muster the courage to tell his father.  Sonya, the sexy paleontologist, just out of grad school, and working on her first dig as a full-fledged member of the team.  She wants to prove to herself that she can do this job, as opposed to what her father wanted her to be:  a ballerina.  Michael, not a scientist, but an experienced guide to far-out places.  A rugged individualist, lives in a cabin on the edge of Alaska in his free time.  No interest in ballet.  Last, we have Carl, the paterfamilias of the scientific community.  His theory is that the earliest intergalactic bodies to have crashed into Earth, di so here, in Antarctica, and spawned life.  He believes that remnants of that early life may still exist, deep under the ice.  Needless to say, he's a pariah in the scientific community.

C:  "Sonya, bring me the portable sonar. Yes, just wheel it over here, I think we may have found something." 

Sonya pushes the cart, the wheels emitting their familiar squeak, and stops before the hole that was just drilled (the tenth of the day), letting Carl and Rolf set up the sonar.

R:  "Ja, just a bit more...ummmph, there.  Mein gott, this thing is heavier each time I am lifting it.  This is the last one today, and then we are to the camping van for the dancing....I mean, I MEAN for the eating, ja, ... essen.  No dancing.  Okay, Herr Doktor?"  Rolf looks around sheepishly.

C:  "Okay, okay Rolf." Carl, not noticing the verbal slip  "Just this once more.  But I have a feeling, I have a feeling about this one."

M:  "That's what you said yesterday, last week, and last year, Doc.  Well, in any event, I'm going outside to look for any of those bears we saw yesterday.  See ya."  Exit, Michael.

*Whoommp!*  *Whoommp!*  The sonar sends its powerful vibrations through the ice crust, into the drilled canal, down deep into the ice core.

C:  "Hmmm, hmmm.  Take a look Sonya, Carl.  This image...doesn't it seem intriguing?"  They all crowd around the green, flickering screen, trying to discern what the image means.  "I think...yes...I think we've found something.  Rolf, quickly, let's lower the claw and bring it up!!"

More mechanical type sound as the three maneuver the claw tripod over the hole, and begin to lower it down into the hole.  Minutes later...

S: "Yes,'s almost to the top.  Quick, Doctor, get the table ready, I'll maneuver it on to the top of it."  Sonya quickly angles the claw device over the table, and with the use of a few switches, lowers the payload onto the table.  It is only approximately fourteen inches square, weighing no more than 1.5 pounds, and is jet black, yet shiny.  They all crowd in, looking... searching.

R: "Do you smell that?  What is it? I am never before smelling this...this.... AGHAGHGHAGHGH!" 

Cut to outside.  Michael is on patrol with his rifle.  He quickly turns as he hears the screams.  He immediately rushes into the scientific tent.

M: "What's going on? I heard a...."  An unseen force hits Michael from behind and knocks him down, unconscious.  Lights cut out.  A wet, chewing sound is heard.  Fade out.

Funny little story, right?  Kind of like "The Thing", right?  Just fiction, right?  Right?!?

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