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Monday, October 02, 2006

Modern History



The emancipation of the witch or modern history.

The year is 2027, with the demise of conventional religion, discredited in the great Mediterranean War of 2021 and the fall of Rome an unpleasant spiritual vacuum was created. The authorities (on all sides) gazed into this vacuum and decided that an appropriate filling was required, for the common good of all the people. A way to explain, calm, resolve, solve and focus the heightened sense of purposelessness that now seemed to dog each human life in the heartlands of Europe and Asia was needed.

As there was no emperor these days, or one who could decide things properly anyway, a competition was devised and run to help decide on what the best solution might be, answers had to be submitted by text, email or on a postcard to:

“Things to fill the vacuum” c/o The Founding Fathers, Room 202, The Former Vatican City, Rome, Italy (as was).

The suggestions went something like this, in no particular order:

Cream Cheese
More vacuum
Different kinds of vacuum
A black hole
Pulp fiction
Herds of screaming, howling animals
Frogs and 6 other plagues
Alien beings
Orchestral music
Figures of speech
Lonely people whistling nervously
Fizzy lemonade
Old kind of ideas
Books from charity shops
Flotsam and jetsam
Lost keys and old mobile phones
Abstract theories
Home baking
Various Simpson’s episodes
Odd socks from Chinese laundry baskets
Sweet potatoes and chives
Millions of tons of cement
A single red balloon
Football fans of all sorts
Overheard conversations
False nipples
Some other old ideas about what god might look like
Left over Happy Meals
A big asteroid
Actual air
Vacuum cleaners
Reformed religion
Classic cars
Glen Millar melodies
Tupperware items
Torn up newspapers
Princess Diana memorabilia
Niagara Falls
Broken DVD players that you could easily repair
Carbon Monoxide
Civil Servants
Junk mail
The remains of Indian take aways.

The list went on and on, I’ve chosen to list just a few of the better suggestions. In the end however there was only one winner and that was Witchcraft.

At first this choice was not popular in all quarters and a number of dissidents and priests who complained to the authorities had to be executed, unfortunately. Some socialist radicals also wrote strongly worded letters to their socialist newspapers but thankfully things settled down once their reporter style note pads were confiscated and their coach suffered a puncture. Cyber complaints were more difficult to control, one large website “www.No! To the hated witchy thing!” ran for 65 days until it was shut down by removing the plug. Over a million hits were recorded and comments passed.

So it was witchcraft or nothing. A pan-Europe vote was taken and in the Middle East a number of oil rich sheiks had a meeting with some bearded clerics. The people finally spoke in one clear voice through these diverse yet complimentary mediums and the resounding answer was “Nothing”. “The people have spoken” was the headline in many newspapers but strangely not the day after the vote, it came a little later in fact.

At first it seemed like a bad day for witchcraft and many activists were clearly, visibly disappointed at the rebuff they had suffered. There is however no such thing as bad publicity of any kind. While “Nothing” became a very successful religion and vacuum filler throughout most of these parts and some others, Witchcraft flourished in new and unexpected areas such as: The Royal Family, the Army, the financial services area, Albania (as was), in many ships and oil tankers, on coasts, on islands and in dark and spooky houses and homes. Old people embraced Witchcraft also and many of then grew fine warts and extra large tomatoes in season. All things seemed fine and in an perfect, edgy kind of balance until the cold hard winter of 2029 descended...

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