A story of creation and the flood.
Date: Thu, 4 Apr 96 17:38:12 -0800
From: Peter Langston <psl>
Subject: A story of creation and the flood.
Forwarded-by: Keith Bostic <email@example.com>
Forwarded-by: Tim Wright <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Forwarded-by: "JP" <email@example.com>
A STORY OF CREATION AND THE FLOOD
In the beginning there was absolutely nothing at all. Not even a formless
void, seriously nothing. And God said 'This is bloody marvellous.'
Then in a careless moment he created something that was not nothing and
the whole of the universe suddenly sprang out of it. Light, darkness,
time, space, a vault of stars, heaven, earth, seed-bearing plants, water
and air teeming with living creatures and all manner of creeping things
that inhabit the earth. And God said, 'Whoops.'
Then amongst the many creeping things on the earth he noticed a man and
a woman who were not entirely unlike himself and he said unto them. 'It
is not good for you to be alone and certainly not good that you have no
computing power. I give to you each a perfect PC, engineered to the
highest standards and absolutely crash resistant. The operating system
is entirely intuitional and upgrades itself to your own personal needs on
the fly. It consumes no power and will serve you for your entire life,
which of course in Eden is a bloody long time.' And Adam and Eve said,
'That's jolly decent of you.'
Now both of them were naked but they felt no shame in front of each other.
The serpent was the most subtle of all the wild beasts that God had made.
It asked the woman, 'Did God really say you must not under any
circumstances take the back off your PC?' The woman answered, 'We may take
the back off any of the appliances in the Garden and generally tinker with
any interesting technology but of the PC God said "You must not take the
back off it, nor even consider taking the screws out and having a peek
inside, under pain of death."'
Then the serpent said to the woman, 'No! you will not die! God knows in
fact that on the day you open up the case your eyes will be opened and
you will be like gods knowing good and evil.' The woman saw that the PC
was extremely clever and pleasing to the eye, and that it was desirable
for the knowledge that it could give. So she took the back off it and
looked inside and she showed it to Adam who was with her and he looked
inside also. Then the eyes of both of them were opened and they realized
that they were naked. So they sewed fig leaves together to make themselves
loin-clothes but not before they had dug out their Polaroid camera.
Adam and Eve heard the sound of God walking in the garden and they hid
from him because they were naked. God said 'How did you know you were
naked? Have you tinkered with things you should not have?' And Adam said,
'It was Eve, not me, honest. She took the back off and I had a brief look
inside.' And Eve said, 'It wasn't my fault, the serpent tempted me and I
Then God said to the serpent, 'Because you have done this, be accursed
beyond all corporate managers. You shall be the managing director of a
world software monopoly and be despised by all creatures. I will make you
enemies of each other, you and the woman, your offspring and her
offspring. She will crush your head and you will strike her heel.'
To the woman he said, 'I will multiply your pains in computing, you will
from now on have to use IBM compatible machines. You will have to learn
in pain the horrors of interrupts, conflicts, shortage of memory, dip
switches,inexplicable crashes, parity errors, the RS232 standard,
mountains of jargon and programs engineered to work more slowly so that
you have to buy a faster machine for no net gain!'
And to the man he said, 'Accursed be the whole field of computing for you.
Every day you will have to take the back off your machine. Each part of
your system will be driven by a separate daughter board each one
conflicting with the next. There will be no support for anything because
the standard you buy into will be obsolete on the day your cheque is
cashed! You will become obsessed with upgrades and 'faster' will become
your new god. You will spend more time with your PC than with Eve and she
will become majorly pissed off.'
And so God expelled Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. He banished them
and in front of the garden he posted two mighty bouncers, and set in the
gateway a massive Apple through which no mortal could pass.
The man had intercourse several times with Eve and she conceived and gave
birth to a surprising number of children. And inexplicably without the
hint of incest the world was populated with computer engineers, systems
analysts information technologists and PC magazine editors.
God saw that the wickedness of man was great and that the thoughts of his
heart fashioned nothing but wickedness all day long. God regretted again
having created everything and resolved to do something about it. And he
said, 'I will destroy everything, all birds of the air and fish that make
their way through the waters, all creeping things which I never liked
anyway and all men and women who have become corrupt. I will send a mighty
flood, a deluge that will engulf the whole world. A seductive operating
system that will promise everything but which delivers nothing! A program
that will enslave and destroy the world.'
However one or two people had found favour with God. He looked at the
earth and saw that a few men and women had never ever taken the backs off
their computers! In fact they never thought about why they should, for
their machines worked faultlessly, never crashed and never needed
And God said, 'That rings a bell.'
Hurriedly returning to the Garden he found a distinct lack of personnel
on the gate, no Apple and absolutely no PCs inside.... So while the flood
wreaked havoc over the face of the globe just a few climbed aboard the
ark clutching the fruits of Eden!
And then, realizing he had been a bit harsh God said, 'Never again shall
I curse the earth, its wildfowl, its fish nor its seed-bearing plants .
You may freely use the machines made in the Garden and as a sign of this
new covenant I will mark each one with a rainbow in the shape of an
And Lo, after the flood had receded the travellers on the ark inhabited
a new country and enjoyed a land flowing with rivers. Especially happy
were the two very large gentlemen who became exceedingly rich and
especially unhappy were the horrible creeping things which inhabited the
earth, they were totally obliterated.
Here endeth the first lesson.
© 1996 Peter Langston