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The Invention of Email

The Year 1971:

Two computer scientists, Ray and Vern, sit at two giant proto-computers set at opposite ends of the room.

Ray: Now sending data packet to remote station two.

Vern: Data received.

Both scientists look up at each other.

Ray: We did it. We sent a file from one networked machine to another.

Vern: We’ve invented electronic mail, Ray! We’re going to revolutionize the way people communicate!

Ray: Our names will be remembered forever.

Vern: You’re right about-oh, hey, I’ve got mail. What’d you send me?

Ray: Just read it.

Vern: Second email ever, right? Let’s see what we got here… it’s asking… it’s asking if I’m satisfied with the size of my penis.

Ray: Well?

Vern: Why did you send this? Why would you send me an email saying my penis is too small?

Ray: So you think it’s too small?

Vern: That’s not funny, Ray! These are the first emails ever; people are going to remember this stuff! Now in the future there’s going to be a museum exhibit about how small my dick is! 

Ray: I… I’m sorry, Vern. I don’t know what came over me.

Vern: Look, let’s just forget about it, okay? We invented email. It’s a great day.

Ray: Damn right it is. By the way, I sent you those photos you asked for.

Vern: Well, thanks. I don’t remember asking for any photos, but oh my god, what the hell is this?

Ray: It’s a virus.

Vern: Why? Why are you doing this?

Ray: Uh, maybe because it’s funny? Don’t be such a n00b, Vern.

Vern: Don’t- what? We’re both newbies! We invented email five minutes ago!

Ray: Sorry, I’m sorry. Listen, let’s put all this behind us. Here, check out these hot XXXsluts I’m sending you.

Vern: I will check out these hot XXX sluts, but it’s only for research.

Ray: Nice, huh?

Vern: Well, yes. Two girls, wow. What are they doing with that cup of oh god oh fuck you, Ray. Fuck. You.

Vern gets up to leave.

Vern: We had a beautiful thing here, Ray. A beautiful thing that you destroyed.

Ray: Destroyed? My poor Vern. This is only the beginning. You think you can escape this by leaving the room? This is going to be everywhere. Everywhere! There’s no escape! LOL!

Vern: Did you-sorry, did you just say “LOL”?


Vern leaves. Ray continues to shout “LOL" maniacally.

The Year 2015:

A grandfather finishes putting a small child to bed.

Grandfather: …and that’s the story of how e-mail was invented, and how five thousand years of language was reduced to a cheap slurry of half-formed sentences, pornography, and arbitrary aggression. Sleep tight, fucker.

Child: Fuck you too, grandpa.

Grandfather smiles warmly.

Grandfather: Die of AIDS.

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