Tuesday, March 08, 2005


Before leaving her abode for the "Who's Real" contest her thoughts spiraled into self-doubt. Soon she would pit her make believe existence against two living human contestants. On live national television! She'd done everything to conceal her artificiality. She'd put on make-up. She'd memorized the refrain of a top ten love song, practiced relating her aspiration: "I've always wanted to write a poem." She even planned the effect of a tear rolling down her cheek. But what if they saw beneath the surface? Saw the fiberglass weavings under her fragile, skin-colored veneer? It meant so much to her to win. Once they had certified her as real, she could do what real people did: share intense, one-time conversations with chance acquaintances, go shopping at Wal-Mart, use a cell phone and all the other mysterious and wonderful rituals accessible only to people with hearts and souls. At the studio she lost her way and wandered onto the set of a soap opera. Something about her, some searching look in her eye, struck the director. She was immediately given a role, returned each day to live out her new life with her new friends. And it was a sensation. The soap opera's ratings shot into double digits. Sacks bursting with fan mail arrived for the new character. Men basked in fantasies about her. Women all over the world saw her and wanted to be just like her.

Story #180

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

She's real.

The Mushroom said...

She's as real as Paris Hilton.

(p.s. - "heart and soul" have nothing to do with shopping at Wal-Mart, and possessing an abundance of those two items prevents such behavior.)

Indeterminacy said...

Oops. Maybe the irony failed.

Evan said...

That was very odd... It seems to me a loony's version of Pinnochio..

Indeterminacy said...

I never thought of that, but you're right. This is kind of a bizarre variation of the Pinnochio theme. Actually I was thinking of the Twilight Zone episode "The Afterhours," one of my earliest TV memories, when I wrote this. It occurred to me after posting it that it might also relate to the Gary Wilson piece "6.4" (can be downloaded at sixpointfour.com) which ends with Gary desparately calling out "She's real!" at the end. I associate that with the Twilight Zone episode "The Lonely" in which a lone prisoner on an astroid comes to believe that his robot companion is alive.