Another break from “The Cleaners.” If you’re worried about what happens next, I’ll just tell you right now, William Cleaner is Diane’s Father. Also, Diane was a ghost the whole time, Henry Whicker is just a projection of the other side of Diane’s split personality, and Walter was never Diane’s late husband, just an ordinary conman from Omaha, Nebraska. “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain” he will protest just before Diane reveals him and we find out that we were on Earth the whole time.
Ordinarily I wouldn’t take another break at this point, but my own real life has become rather dramatic as of late. I’ve got another big presentation for the high ranking executives of SAS, and I’ve been working twelve hours a day to prepare and stay on top of my other duties, which have not abated. My paper has been accepted to Artificial Intelligence in Education, which meets in Madrid this year, and there’s an unusually short deadline on the camera-ready version. At the same time I have a flurry of paper reviews, two of which were self-inflicted, that I have to complete. I spent most of yesterday writing three of them. Other tasks, such as arranging to get forty-eight symposium and workshop papers added to the Intellimedia paper database, have been put on the back burner.
Now it’s time to put aside wastes of time and get work done. I’ve declared web browsing to be banned. No more going on the web without an explicit purpose, and then once finished, I go back offline again. Also, just in time, my Soylent arrived. Now I, too, get to enjoy the only food in America with an eleven-page instruction manual complete with a version number, changelists, and a page dedicated to warnings. It tastes like pancake batter, but is probably better for me than any other breakfast food I could eat. Certainly better than an Eggo waffle or any other such pre-processed quick-make breakfast food that often characterize the diets of busy graduate students. I don’t replace all my meals yet, but I have been known to replace as many as two meals in a day as the need arises. One fun thing about Soylent is that now that I’m also wearing a facemask to avoid spreading a head cold I have I look like a poster child for the dystopian future. I also have a device I wear on my wrist that keeps track of my life signs to report to a server in an unknown location and I’m working extremely hard to develop advanced artificial intelligence. Maybe I am living in a dystopian future.