The Real Story
Yesterday afternoon I reluctantly entered a trendy coffee shop in search of a protein source following a particularly savage and debilitating workout. While standing in line I overheard the enthusiastic exchange between two teenagers lounging at a nearby table. “So if his theory is correct – and I KNOW it is – we’re living in a computer simulation. That means The Matrix is a movie about our society obliviously living in a simulation made by people who are also living in a simulation.” “A simulation of a simulation made by people living in a simulation?” “Yes. We’re living in a fake universe.”
Chuckling to myself in the face of such naive certainty about the nature of existence, I shifted my focus to the lady in front of me, who was just then putting in her order. “What kinds of fake cheese can I substitute for the cheddar on my sandwich?” “Well,” responded the barista, her fakely tanned face smiling fakely as she pointed to the menu. The employee adjacent to her poured fake milk into a blender and laughed fakely with a fake-breasted customer who sprinkled fake sugar into her coffee. Across the room a hipster couple dined on fake chicken patties and loudly discussed fake spirituality with an elderly man who adjusted the fake hair atop his head. Beside them a middle-aged woman wearing fake diamonds read an advertisement for fake lawn grass. A group of millennials behind me spoke of their views on “the fake presidency” as CNN/”fake news” played on the television mounted above them.
“You know,” said teenager #1 (whom, I noticed, was dressed identically to teenager #2) after taking a drag from a fake cigarette, “at least we’re living real lives in this sea of fakeness.”