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     The other day, I was engaged in a conversation with a fan of the movie
Battleship. My friend kept telling me how a seventy-odd year old battleship
was able to defeat the alien invaders of our world. Here is how that
conversation went:

Him: Hey, Juan. Did you see the new Battleship movie?
Me: No. Should I?
Him: Oh Yeah! Listen! They kicked their ass, man!!
Me: Who? Who kicked whose ass?
Him: The battleship! They kicked the aliens’ ass! Drove ‘em off the planet!
Me: Cool. Now I for sure don’t have to see it.
Him: No Dude! You HAVE to go!
Me: Nope. No need now. Say, was it like Independence Day?
Him: Well, yes and no. But the result was the same.

I looked at my friend askance and he realized that I needed convincing.

Him: Look, it’s really good.
Me: So you say. (My friend ignored the slight and continued gesticulating
while telling me the whole story.) After finishing, which didn’t take more
than two minutes; he looked at me like ‘well?’

So I looked really hard at him, and it suddenly occurred to me that I had the
perfect argument.

Me: You know, if I were an alien invader with unlimited Hollywood tech, I’d
vaporize the human race and kobolform the planet.
Him: What’s that?
Me: Kobolform? Come on, dude. Where have you been?
Him: Well, what’s kobolform?

By now, Billybob was thoroughly confused. I was tempted to leave him hanging,
but I just didn’t have the heart.

Me: Don’t you know that Kobol is the cradle of humanity?
Him: I didn’t know that. Tell me more. Is this from a movie?
Me: Oh no. It’s real. In fact, it’s a Mormon thing.
Him: Mormon?
Me: Yeah, Earth is lucky thirteen. (I paused for effect.) Well, the other
Earth.

His eyes bugged on that.

Me: Well, Daniel was number two. But Cavil had him deleted. Killed off his
whole line.
Him: Daniel? His voice was uncertain.
Me: Yeah. And many of the Eights weren’t lucky. Nuked by one of their own.
Him: Kobolform. Is that anything like terraforming?
Me: Yes. But it’s more dangerous.
Him: How so?
Me: (I paused again for effect.) Well. You can’t control the machines that
are doing it.
Him: Why not? (I could see he was getting a little agitated)
Me: They have minds of their own.
Him: Sounds scary.
Me: Well, it’s top secret. (My friend knows I was in the military and never
talk about my former job.)
Him: So how do I find out more about this?

I really had to think hard and fast. Fortunately, my memory didn’t fail me.

Me: Actually, there are only two people who know the full story. And I got my
info from listening to them. But the one you want to talk to is a ‘Mister
Larson’. He for sure knows the whole story.
Him: (Puzzled) Who is that?
Me: Don’t ask. If you value your freedom. But I think he’s a PAC chairman.
Him: Pack?
Me: Yeah. Political Action Committee.
Him: Oh. Which one?
Me: Not sure, Committee To Save Humanity From Itself, I think.

     Later in the week, he called me on my cell and gave me an earful. What
gets me is that he didn’t pick up on my phrase ‘unlimited Hollywood tech’. He
took the bait and I reeled in my fish. It was worth the verbal abuse I took
for the next couple of days.

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