The setting is a bookstore in the era of the pilgrims. A printer and a store owner are arguing about the quality, value, and saleability of a consignment of ‘the first volumes ever printed in America.’
Our protagonist is from the future. She is here to acquire – by any means necessary – a copy of the first book ever printed in America. The volume, in her time, is considered extremely valuable and the organisation she works for needs funding.
Ultimately, she succeeds in thieving her target, right under the noses of the printer and store’s owner; carrying the book out the door in plain sight. Her success she attributes, in essence, to the fact that her stealing something would be so unthinkable, it was impossible to even see.
The book is an easy and fun read titled ‘The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O.’ The point is a little heavier hitting.
Apart from the obviously amoral, there was a time when people could rely on other people’s sense of accountability and good faith. What happened?
How do we find ourselves in a world where we can pay for a service -any service- and be unashamedly ripped off under the guise of apologetic inconvenience? What happened?
How did we come to accept the piss-poor, substandard offering from banks, airlines, freight, and government agencies as the norm? Was it always the norm or did it come about slowly, like cancer; a politician on the rise? What happened?
We don’t trust our neighbours because we can’t. We don’t trust strangers because this would be suicidal. We don’t even trust our doctors because we know better. What happened?
There is little we can say about where we find ourselves other than it is our own fault. We alone are to blame. Every time we look the other way. Every time we accept the miscarriage of services. Every time we contribute to the dismal blueprint of ‘fuckery.’
Maybe it’s time we spend less time worrying about what which celebrity thinks about transvestites, or the state of gender, or the legitimacy of rainbows, or the colour of blue. Maybe it’s time we spent more time worrying about the erosion of common decency. Focusing on this will likely solve most of the anthropological ‘problems,’ and possibly the colour spectrum too.