Jazz jumped to her side. “What’s wrong?”
Blossom turned abruptly to the closet, clutching at a thick blanket hanging on the door. “Wow.” She pointed to her arms. “Ghost bumps.”
“You mean goosebumps?”
“No, ghost bumps. My grandmother, Nona, sent me a message.”A Reason To Forget: Training Games
I create fiction, and in this category of writing, strange and unbelievable events occur. Superheroes fly. Children blow up buildings with their minds. Humans travel into space and encounter all manner of sentient life. You could argue that these examples are science fiction. But is realistic fiction more rational when timelines align perfectly, an eclectic mix of character traits combine to advance the plot to the ideal ending, and the good guys always win? This is not real life, right?
1818 Mary Shelley’s Dr. Frankenstein reanimated dead flesh by electric shock. In 1947, real-life Dr. Claude Beck saved a teenager with his homemade defibrillator.
1911 Stratemeyer Syndicate wrote Tom Swift and His Electric Rifle. In 1974, Jack Cover, a NASA scientist, loved the idea and invented the first Taser.
1880 In Mary Bradley Lane’s “Mizora,” fictional Amazonians used beef chemicals to create economical synthetic burgers. In 2013, Mark Post grew beef in the lab from stem cells.
How about communication? You know—talking to people far, far away.
1837 Wired telegraph
1895 Wireless telegraph
Don’t freak out.
2014 Starlab, Axilum Robotics, and Harvard Medical School published results of their experiment using telepathic communication between two subjects wearing EEG (electroencephalography) sensors and TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation) systems on their heads. Okay, the experiment was lengthy and lacked finesse, but a first step is a first step.
So, cards on the table. Because of my religious beliefs and a tendency to view everything from a scientific perspective, I join Davy in his skepticism regarding Ghost Bumps and communicating with the dead. Ninety-nine percent of the time! But I communicate daily with God, who resides in the same realm as my dead grandmothers. Hmm?
It is my waffling one percent that makes reading fiction so enjoyable. Experiencing the what-ifs, the maybes, and the doubts forces me to shed my ties to the sanctioned and delve into the possibilities, to take what I know and have been taught and see beyond them to what might be.
Skepticism protects me from frauds, charlatans, and swindlers. Open-mindedness allows me to grow.
And I do believe the good guys always win, just maybe not in this lifetime.