We Are Aliens from Another World
For a few seasons in the late 60s, there was a show on TV called, “The Invaders.” It was about aliens who walked among us, looking like humans in every way except for a stiff little finger. The aliens were invading Earth by infiltrating the police force and military and becoming leaders in society. A few people knew how to identify the aliens and knew all about the invasion, but they were having a tough time convincing anyone else. They sounded crazy.
I had a dream last night that the pandemic was over, but also that it wasn’t. There were weird things like how nobody wore their shoes, they just carried them around. But also, everyone was suspicious of everyone else. There was this big open secret — some of us had helped to end the pandemic and some of us hindered that fact. We knew who some were, but we didn’t know the others. Anyway, it was not polite to bring it up. People knew but didn’t say.
I had a conversation with a guy the other day who said — as untold millions have said — that the old people should just stay away and get the vax and leave everyone else the hell alone, you know, to “live their life.” I told him that those who are most vulnerable to COVID aren’t the ones spreading it, and so he had that exactly backward. And then he asked — as untold millions have asked — “Why should I have to care about anyone else?” My only answer, “Humanity.”
The Invaders TV show was about communist infiltrators, of course, which was made obvious whenever an alien was killed on the show — they would glow bright red and then evaporate. There was a lot of anti-commie fervor back in those days. It was the Vietnam War, remember? Aliens were a good way to surreptitiously tell that story. “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” was another good one.
What’s funny — or sad — is that you might be surprised which side you are now on. I’ve been called a “commie” plenty lately, just for saying commie shit like, “Humanity.” As the other side would have it, this is a dog-eat-dog world, and fuck your feelings. “Freedom!” As far as they are concerned, THEY are the good guys and people like me have a stiff little finger.
We’ve been so mired in this pandemic we haven’t much thought about what happens next, but we will get past this and there will be a world we return to. But for a while, at least, that world will not be the one we left in 2020. We are time travelers. We are going to know more than we ought to know about each other — who is who — and that’s going to make a difference. Some were looking out for strangers and some were only looking out for their own. Some saw the bigger picture, and some only saw their own little world. Some dealt in facts and some dealt in make-believe. Some did the most they could do — without complaint. Some did the least — complaining the whole while.
Which side you are on determines which side you think is the good guys, because the good guys will always include you. That’s just how it works. But the rest of us will know.