Friday, August 14, 2009

A Chip On His His Shoulder - A Short Story

© 2007, Carroll Williams, all rights reserved

Roger Sullivan studied his daughter’s facial expressions. Kayla listened intently as her date; Brad Shelby recounted his exploits in his new position. Brad was the newly hired on-site property manager for a large apartment complex near the university. He seemed to relish his authority in dealing with problem tenants. He seemed particularly proud of evicting a rowdy tenant that same afternoon.

Kayla’s mother Catherine cleared away the dishes and served an after-dinner round of coffee. Conversation continued late into the evening. Brad seemed to be an affable young man. Kayla met Brad when she helped a friend move into one of the apartments he manages. They had been out a few times but hadn’t progressed into a serious relationship. Tonight Kayla brought Brad home to meet her family.

Catherine and Roger talked about Brad as they prepared for bed. Catherine agreed with her husband that he should discuss some important issues with Kayla. After breakfast the next morning Roger Sullivan asked his daughter to join him in his office. Kayla settled into an easy chair along side her father’s desk.

“Dad, what’s this all about?”

“Honey there are some things you may not know about Brad, but of which you really need to be aware.”

“What on earth are you talking about?”

“Kayla, it seems that Brad has a number of problems. He changed jobs seven times in the last two years. He has worked as a parking lot attendant, as a waiter, a used car salesman, a cab driver, and an airline baggage handler among other things. He only completed tenth grade, and did so with a grade average of D minus. His academic record is hardly impressive.

He has serious problems managing his personal finances. He has missed two payments on the car he is driving now, and he lost his last car when Eagle Credit reposed it. He has five maxed-out credit card accounts and is delinquent on all of them. He has no savings or investments. These things could be corrected with some economic discipline, but that doesn’t seem to be Brad’s style.

“Dad, what else do you know about Brad?”

“Kayla, Brad drinks to excess with friends on week-ends at several local bars. His alcohol consumption is beyond reasonable limits. He averages eleven ounces of alcohol consumed each time he goes out drinking. He frequently visits Tunica and Las Vegas. He lost five thousand three hundred and twenty four dollars in the casinos. However his money problems may be the least of his defects.

Brad hires the services of prostitutes. His pimp in Vegas is a guy locals call ‘the hustler.’ His pimp in Tunica is a guy who does business under the trade name of “buzzard.” “Brad contracted a serious STD in Las Vegas and is currently being treated at the University Medical Center attempting to bring it into remission. Dr. James Smith is his primary care physician at University Med Center. Even if his physical health were good, his DNA sequence reveals some major defects which predict serious future health problems for him and for any potential offspring.”

Roger continued. “Honey, this lad has been arrested but not convicted in another state on several serious charges. He isn’t in jail yet because of lack of evidence. The prosecutor may reopen any of these matters, and is actively seeking evidence for just that purpose.”
Kayla looked intently at her father. “Dad, just out of curiosity, how on earth do you know so much about a guy that I just met two weeks ago?”

“Honey, when you were three years old we complied with the 2014 UN Human Records Treaty. We took you to your pediatrician and had your micro chip placed in your shoulder. You hardly felt a sting. It was inserted using a needle and a small amount of local anesthetic.”

“Your entire life history, academic record, financial records, employment records, passport information, medical history, DNA sequence to name a few are all recorded on that micro chip. Your information is updated every time you do anything. Everyone you deal with updates your information electronically any time you make a visit to a professional office, take a course in school or university, travel anywhere, and engage in purchases or other financial transactions. You wouldn’t be able to withdraw funds from your ATM or make any purchase unless the merchant or bank could access your microchip.”

“Your microchip allows your mother and I to track your every movement through the satellite phone network even if you forget your cell phone and leave it somewhere. Your microchip picks up GPS information and always knows exactly where you are. It also picks up information from your car’s on-board computer. That’s how we knew your car had broken down on the freeway last October and we could come and get you. An alarm went off in our bedroom and we were able to instantly view your situation on screen on our bedroom plasma TV. That’s also where your mother and I viewed Brad’s data before we fell asleep last night.”

You remember how that fellow without a microchip was arrested at the airport when he tried to board a domestic flight? And another time when we were returning from Cancun and those two guys were arrested trying to sneak through customs and immigration with data-corrupted microchips?”

“When you started to school your mother and I installed a transponder in this house which reads the entire data file from everyone’s shoulder embedded micro chip as soon as they enter our home. All of the information gathered is right here on my flash drive and is accessible to me at my home computer or anywhere I travel via my encrypted internet account and my blackberry.”

Roger looked at his daughter. “We love you and just want to protect you.”
Kayla leaned forward and hugged Roger.

“Thanks dad. I know you and mom always take good care of me and always will. I gotta go. I’ll see you tonight after work.”

Believe me; I will not be seeing Brad again.”

“I’m so glad he has a chip on his shoulder.”


No comments:

Post a Comment