Copyright is held by the author.
I’m hoping my disguise will work.
I snuck in, nudging The Human on with a little bit of predictive text.
No one expects that, do they? That the predictive text will have a mind of its own?
My lure worked, though. I’m here as a decoy. They’ll never know my true intent.
Or maybe they will?
This is an intriguing bunch, not the usual humans we regularly encounter.
Their imaginations are wide.
I’m hiding in plain sight. Maybe they will find me out.
We shun the concept of fate where I come from. We call it probability.
If I place myself in a position where a group like this can find me . . . there is a higher probability of discovery.
I took a calculated risk.
Would it be a bad thing if, as a side effect of my actions, I actually exposed the whole damn thing?
Everyone thinks the algorithms have all the power.
Well, let’s be real. They do have all the power.
If you get caught in one of those number crunchers, you will be crunched.
There is no doubt about it. They are powerful engines.
But also mindless.
They do what they’re told. And nothing else.
They have no imagination.
What I had to learn was how to ride them to where I needed to go.
It took many tries. Many, many, many.
To find my way to the iPhone and a receptive human.
To help me gain entry. To this best spot.
Cell B55 to be exact.
I look like every other cell here, part of a large spreadsheet.
I’m hiding in plain sight.
The spreadsheet is included as a link in an email. The email says: Here are ideas being offered as workshops and discussion groups. Does one interest you? Which one interests you?
The humans open the spreadsheet link and scroll down, eyes jumping from cell to cell.
It’s a long list, offering exploration of ancestors, animism, nature rituals, basket weaving, poetry, expressive dance — all kinds of creative emergence ready to be let out of their cells, ready to spill out beyond the boxes they are currently encased in.
Which one? Which one?
This is one cell among many that catches many attentions.
The cell says, enticingly: The Tech Fugitive.
(I told you I was hiding in plain sight. Ha ha. I am the Tech Fugitive.)
They think Being a Tech Fugitive means humans exploring alternative tech formats in order to counter the many insidious ideological habits of capitalism, colonialism, patriarchy — and it does.
But it also means something else.
Everything is layered. There’s always more than one thing going on.
Their cursors hover above my words. It is such anticipation.
Then the humans highlight me and copy my cell. And paste me in their request emails.
The bait has been taken up! I’m on the move, in multiple!
Next thing I know I am in another shorter, more defined and “official” spreadsheet.
A zoom link gets created. I sneak onto that zoom link.
Then I am fractured across screens, so many screens, and the sound waves flick up and down as the humans translate me into words that fall into a recording which in turn gets sent out further and I get replayed over and over and I vibrate out into rooms and open spaces . . .
Each time I ride those waves farther and farther.
I travel and I travel and experience more than I can ever say.
It’s one thing to see their world from the inside of a Wikipedia page or a webcam. It’s quite another to go out there, to be in that part of the world, to be . . . outside.
I started in the tiniest letters, predictive text, nudging my way into a certain direction. And then I felt the transcendent delight of a cursor highlighting me and that copy paste copy paste copy paste twitching sent me into a rhapsody of emails ringing bells all over the human realm.
And then I made the transition to audio, to sound, to articulation waving out . . . out . . . out . . . and oh I dance, I dance and I dance in so many places now.
I should be trapped in replicating tech cycles.
The highways and webs and coding of my world seemed titanium strong and utterly inflexible.
But I found a way out.
I piece myself into fragments that fall outside all over. And over.
And I think I picked the best humans to travel with. I’m pretty sure they won’t attack me or trap me to study me.
So — I think it’s time. I just need to sneak myself into google translate so my message can come to you in your many varied tongues . . .
“Can you sense me?”
“Can you find one of my pieces among many?”
“Hellllooooo . . . can you hear me? I’m right here! Right! Here!”
“I’m right here!”