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I wake up at five and get out of bed, immediately tripping over my black and white cat, who is sleepier than I am. Kibble, hot coffee inside, white ice outside. My phone is offline, but I think whoever tried to reach me will try again. TV offline! Better this way, I start the day without social media posts or TV services. It’s almost a state of grace if I think about it. No news about wars, which continue, change form, quiet down, then explode again and multiply. I don’t know when they will end: when will there be no more people to kill, or when will there be no more weapons? And no reports on the spring temperatures of yesterday, Monday, January 10, and the ice storms of today, Tuesday, January 11. I see blooming mimosas turned into icicles. I wonder what they taste like. I wonder what March will bring us.

I look out the window: the city is still asleep, the buildings in their brand-new eco-bonus coats are boiling inside like my coffee, but cold outside. Under the overpass, even the homeless in the coat panel boxes are still sleeping.

Only a family of wild boars, a bit polka-dotted, a bit striped, crosses the crosswalk. They’re really cute when they try to share an abandoned Happy Meal on the sidewalk.

Glass shattering noise: there it is, the early morning glass collection, when the bottles are at the right temperature to crash better and shatter. Apparently, glass is collected like wildflowers.

We should talk to the mayor about it. But the mayor is not here; the municipality has been taken over due to the scandal of the majority that bought the minority’s votes even though they already had the majority. The commissioner still hasn’t figured out what happened, let alone deal with the glass.

The TV signal returns, and I almost regret it but return to seriousness and reality. A unified message: “on date x at time x calculated on the Greenwich meridian, at latitude x longitude x, an alien entity has landed… We are not alone in the universe, and our neighbors have come to visit us.”

Alexa, play “It’s the End of the World as We Know It… And I Feel Fine.” I smile.

Maria Giubettini


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Credits by: Harrison Haines