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  • Writer's pictureFrank T Bird

The Old Squartilian

Even in the future, there are traffic jams

Two green crazyheads in a car in the future

The Old Squartilian cleared his throat and began —

As Quorntiti himself taught us, you are a biological sphere of matter, every part of which rests on every other part. Through a form of neurosis, you become ignorant of the whole of which one is a part. You cannot be the part without being the whole. If you could be the part and not the whole, it would imply that the part would have to truly exist as a thing independent of everything else, which it can’t because it leans on every other part for its existence. The dee —

Mary’s hand flicks off the radio. I don’t blame her. It's damn hot today — too hot for weird reptilian philosophical radio stations — too hot for this convertible. I wish I weren’t too stoned to put the hood up.

We pull up at the traffic lights behind a cyclist who thinks they are a car. That’s not normal behaviour for a cyclist, I don’t think. I believe you are meant to ride in the cycle lane, not as a user of the car lane — yet here we are.

A Ferrari F30000-FX pulls up in the next lane. The user has graphite sunglasses and is wearing a gold suit. The stunning red beast makes no sound, but I feel the energetic revving, taunting me into a street race.

Lara, activate sports mode, please, I say into the hot air.

Sports mode-activated.

— and here we go.

Mary objects as usual. We’ve been here before, but usually, there isn't a cyclist blocking the way.

I turn on my PA.

Hey Buddy, wanna get off the road? No answer — the fucker is ignoring me. Hey, Buster, why don’t you move your fucking arse off the fucking road before I snap your fucking bike and then snap you? Still nothing. Not even flinching. Does he have headphones on?Mary, can you look and see if he has headphones on?

No, Jackie. Just have another hit, for the love of God.

She’s right. I get out my pre-packed vape, and I take a good hit. I feel ok again.

Sorry, Buddy, I announce on the PA. Take your time, Mate.

The light is still red, and I’m starting to wonder if it's broken — I think we all are wondering that. Minutes pass by. I would have had enough time to put the hood up if I had known we would be here this long. My head is getting sunburned. I’m sweating in this fucking sun. Mary doesn’t care. She has a big hat.

A green Beetle is rattling in the other lane — something isn't right with that. She needs to get that checked. The blonde driving it looks peeved.

Is she crying, Mary? I think she’s crying.

Did you leave enough food for Marmaduke? Mary pipes up from nowhere.

I still think it’s a good name for a pet, but not our son. Mary can be persuasive when she is drunk, though, especially when we have both been drinking.

Course, I did. I look at her. She is mental, but I adore her.

There's a honk from some delivery van behind, and I shit myself. The light has gone green. Golden Suit Boy has gone, and so has Cycling Man. I will miss them.

I take off at normal pace.


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