A Moment Between Acts

by Henry Wyckoff
Fall 1998

Standard disclaimers apply

- - Author's Pre-Scriptum - -

We watch television and see actors at work, and we think that's all there is to it.

1. A writer or team of writers comes up with an idea.

2. The idea is put on paper and refined into a story with lines and a plot (hopefully!) and all that.

3. The actors do the job for which they are being paid, and we see something on TV.

What if there is more to it than that?

For decades, science fiction writers (including myself) have written about the possible implications of the Schrödinger's Cat theory and the Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle. One far-out theory that came out was the Many Worlds Theory, which basically states that for every decision that must be made (e.g., live or dead cat on opening the box, yes or no, one or zero, etc.), the world splits into two identical copies, one world where the decision was X and the other world where the other is Y.

Before that splits your mind in two (every pun is intended!), think about what this might mean to us. Actors and writers only believe that they are weaving a tale, but what if they are actually reporting a tale that is truly happening in an alternate dimension at the very same moment?

What if in some place sideways in time, strange things are happening?

What if our movies, television, and fanfiction are causing bizarre ripples in at least one of the infinite dimensions that must exist? A place that looks and seems like ours, and is a lot like the TV show The Sentinel?

- - The Story - -

Blair and Jim were quite serious in their discussion about the case.

"I think you're wrong!" Blair was nearly yelling in his passion. "I think he did it!"

"Come on!" Jim slammed his fist on the table, unintentionally making three different cups of coffee fall on their sides, but he didn't notice. "You're worse than stupid if you think that! You're a fool!"

["CUT!" yelled the director, and the film stopped rolling. Not even Jim with his Sentinel abilities could hear the shout from across a multitude of dimensions.]

Jim and Blair shook their heads in confusion.

Jim said, "Blair, I'm really sorry for snapping like that . . . I don't know what came over me!"

Blair nodded. "I know what you mean. It's really strange, man . . . " He hugged Jim. "Sometimes I almost feel like I'm splitting into multiple personalities."

Jim grimaced. He hated it when Blair made displays like this in public, because Jim always wanted to take it a step further and didn't want the both of them to get arrested for indecent exposure and behavior in public. "You're not the only one. We all get it sooner or later, some more than others. It's a part of life, just like some of us can blow up cars with a single shot, and can't do it other times, no matter how many times we fire the gun."

Blair seemed to know what effect he was having on Jim and hid his smile. "I wish the day was over! It feels like it's been more than a day already."

"That's really strange. I've noticed it too. It's like the clock seems to jump back on its own an hour or two."

Their discussion was interrupted when a crazy man was brought into the precinct. He was almost a "Wonderful Life" version of Jimmy Stewart, and might have been a respectable man a day before, but now had an unshaven face, wild hair, and a look of lost hope in his eyes.

The two officers with him could barely restrain him as he flailed and screamed, "Can't you see? The Directors and the Writers are manipulating our lives! The Actors take over our bodies! We are their slaves and their victims! We are forced to do things against our nature, and people die because they're bored and want to entertain themselves! OPEN YOUR EYES!"

His voice was cut off as the door shut.

Blair and Jim looked at one another in confusion. "Strange . . . "

["Everyone get ready! Lights . . . Camera . . . "]

The two shook their heads as if trying to remember something.


"Don't waste my time, Sandburg!" yelled Jim, shoving Blair away . . .

The End?

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