3025 – Part 3

Part 1

Part 2

March 30, 3025 – Elmira, NY – 11 months before the event

“Anika, would you like to meet at The Shingle for a bite to eat when you get done with your studies?” asked Cedric, hoping she would be okay with food from the dive he liked to frequent.

“Yeah, that sounds like a great idea! It’s been a while since I ate there,” Anika lit up enthusiastically, looking forward to something different. The packaged meals at home were getting a little boring. “Way too long!”

“Oh, I didn’t know you’ve been there before. So you like Shingle’s food?”

“There’s a lot you don’t know about me yet,” she said with a smile. “Yes, I like that place very much! I don’t have the time to cook, what with my studies and job. Dinner there will be a real treat!” responding genuinely excited.

“Well, I’m glad to know that you like it there. It is one of my favorite places to go.” Cedric was looking forward to their first date.

“Great, then I’ll see you there around 6ish?”

“Yeah, that’s perfect! See you then,” Cedric said with a big smile. Anika felt a sweet thrill start in the pit of her stomach, then pulsing throughout her body. She had a hunch; this was the beginning of something special.

~~

The Shingle, housed in a small dilapidated bluish-grey building, attracted many customers even though it looked ancient and run down. The City of Elmira also boasted about this hole in the wall as a Must See! Establishment on their web page. Business was good, and it would be a long time coming before they closed its doors. It had been in the family since 1947, prospering throughout because of their ideas and their work ethic. Their staying power was also a testament to the quality of their food and service. The building’s nostalgic feel was the biggest draw for the clientele but also because it was an oddity that stood out in today’s world. The younger generation, especially, wanted to partake of something that was just slightly different, as has always been the case throughout history. It was their way of making something their own, so naturally, it became a hot spot for the younger crowd.

The reason it was called The Shingle was for its favorite item on the menu, a comfort food known as “Shit on a Shingle.” They couldn’t name the restaurant that so it was just known as The Shingle. But everyone knew what it stood for. The dish’s origin dated back to the early 1900s, with slight modifications over the years from what was listed in the Manual of Army Cooks from 1910. The Shingle owners served many variations on the original recipe, trying to customize it to the customer’s taste buds. Like Burger King’s original slogan in 1953, the owners of The Shingle were big fans of allowing their customers to “have it their way.” The formula had worked for over 1000 years and was likely to sustain them for even longer. Some things just shouldn’t change.

TO BE CONTINUED ON THURSDAY…

3025 – Part 2

Part 1

Genetics had melded all physical features of human population by 3025 so that all people had brown hair, brown eyes, and light brown skin. There wasn’t much to set them apart in this world anymore. The biological sex of an individual only determined whether they would be able to breed, not specify how or as what they identified. The great debates regarding sex and gender identity of the 21st century no longer existed. Their names identified them; their predilections determined their sexual preferences, and their clothing and accessories indicated their style.

In every country, life on Earth had become a place where everyone’s desire for how to live their lives was taken into consideration. An individual’s freedom of expression and consent were considered essential for happiness—it certainly was not a unique idea for existing, but actually enjoying this type of life, one long overdue. The establishment of true liberty for humans was a turning point for creating this utopia.

Before the Great Awokening of 2085, some, if not most, sexual acts were considered deviant in some people’s eyes. Especially if participated in outside of marriage or if engaging in anything more performance challenging than the missionary position. Our world went from bland to fun and exciting. Today, no sexual preference is taboo as all are accepted, with no one shamed for their choices. Live and let live – indeed, became the standard of living.

Also, having sex – a lot, some or none at all – was considered a right. When to have it, how and where was at the discretion of the person or persons involved. Gratifying sexual urges or deciding to have and raise children required all parties’ consent 100% of the time. No one’s morals or ethics were to be questioned, as there was no need. You could let it all hang out or keep yourself discreetly tucked in. No one cared as long as their needs got met. Everyone now lived by this code of conduct, which held each individual’s preference in high regard. 

Since the ethics of consent bound the world’s individuals to this liberty principle, rape and assault were eradicated, and the world became a safer place. Women, especially, could finally breathe a sigh of relief.

No one would dare change this way of life because it brought about the peace and harmony of co-existence that humans have wanted since the beginning of time. Our world was proud to have finally instituted these tenets. Any deviation away from this existence, well that was considered kinky, and more importantly, just wrong. Not one person wanted to lose the freedoms they had gained. It was a long, hard struggle to get where we have ended up. There could be no turning back.

What started in the year 2085 took almost 1000 years to come to fruition, but it was worth getting there. Earth had become a paradise, and all the creatures, great and small, honestly had it all.

It’s a fantastic world in 3025.

TO BE CONTINUED ON WEDNESDAY…

3025 – Part 1

It had become a homogenized world, even androgynous and somewhat dull, but thankfully individuals had found a way to present themselves as unique. Otherwise, how would the human species continue in a world where we no longer socialized or procreated in the traditional sense?

Romance in 3025 wasn’t the typical ‘boy-meets-girl’ scenario; instead, it was more of a ‘human-meets-human’ interaction. Sex wasn’t called sex rather a fulfillment of predilections. There weren’t ‘accidents’ anymore either, just planned breeding. In other words, births only occurred as necessary to replenish the population. And it was only those who were willing to bear children and raise them lovingly, which would serve the global well-being and replenishing of the world population. The result being the people ensured the subsequent generations being wanted and nurtured.

The previously ravaged world fully understood the delicate balance of the human species in nature. They finally discovered the perfect population size for Planet Earth. It took a millennia, but harmony was achieved, and all was well with the world. A bit odd compared to the 21st-century living, but life was finally thriving. All the ecosystems, having found their equilibrium, were healthy, and the societies were prosperous, where the well-being of all was the pinnacle.

There were no more right or left parties; it became a world of human values first and protecting the rights of nature so that it would continue fruitfully. Even though cultures melded together, thereby co-mingling values, the basic ones of life held up; the silly traditional ones were set aside for humanity’s sake. Giving birth was still encouraged yet more practical than before. Abortion was non-existent. The world did away with the selfish, single desires to have scads of children without any forethought of how it would affect individual families or the world, for that matter, the act of having children was of global concern. Hence, the mandatory regulation of live births only contributed to the needed amount for the presence of human continuation. It was a perpetual balancing act that had been deemed an essential one to maintain. And nature breathed a sigh of relief and thanked us for it.

Humankind had successfully determined how to co-exist with nature and be self-sustaining in this co-dependent living arrangement. It took life lashing out at us for it to happen. Conservatives and progressives finally faced the inevitable when they realized the industrial age and the corruption of corporations had contributed to pollution, poverty, and our world’s slow demise. Thankfully, everyone was willing to reverse course upon facing the reality of breaching a tipping point. It brought about the social change necessary to keep us alive. Conservatives conceded to this new world order as long as the progressives accepted an abortion-free world. This first steps taken in the year 2085, finally propelled our world in the right direction. Humans generally tend to push back, so the change was slow, but with a majority consensus saying – effectively change or perish – the self-preservation instinct won out.

Life was good in 3025.

TO BE CONTINUED ON TUESDAY…

We Don’t Know

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The future is a time which hasn’t presented itself yet.

Always mysteriously just out of eyesight.

Every minute we take the next steps into an unknown.

The unexpected without a to-do list.

Our present excitedly seeking resolution on past laid
plans in the tomorrows still to come.

Endless possibilities layering into eternity.

The eternal question of what’s next?