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Books, Humor, Satire

ONE PERCENT SOLUTION . . . (one page per day) Page 55 of 252

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A satire of dysfunctional politics and economic disparity.  

Chapter VI: Day/Page 55 CONTINUED FROM YESTERDAY. . . .  As iron and other elements become oxidized—saturated with oxygen atoms—more oxygen is free to infuse the air. But oxygen is toxic to the earliest forms of life who planted their flag on an oxygen-free world, and so unfortunately—from their point of view, at least—the rising oxygen-level in the atmosphere leads to a mass extinction on the planet that wipes out 90% of all pioneer life, in what is called—from the pioneer-life perspective—“The Great Oxygen Catastrophe.

From our perspective, though, this “catastrophe” is anything but, because now carbon’s and oxygen’s inherent ability to form long, complex compounds will be leveraged by our ancestors over the millions of years to follow, until that one day when the fundamental archetype of all intelligent life, our great-great grandmother to the Nth degree, our venerable diminutive Granny, who was little more than a brave eager tadpole, wriggles herself out of the primordial sea.

Nothing in nature is superfluous. Life is the master mad scientist, optimizing everything through rigorous trial and error. And so, after learning the hard way that it’s pretty tough to crawl around with only one, or two, or even three appendages—and noting that five is more than is needed—the successors of our earliest tadpole-Grannies inevitably settle on four limbs as the ideal number suited for effective locomotion. Through a similar trial-and-error process of endless augmentation and elimination, later successors settle upon five digits on each of the four limbs as the optimal number needed for balance, as well as running and catching things.

And on and on it goes. Trying. Failing. Improving. And trying again. Life never gives up.

By and by, some creatures learn—again usually the hard way—that having two eyes at the front of the head works best, since the lack of stereoscopic vision and depth perception with having only one eye bolted in front proved disastrous for catching and running from things.

Over time, others found that having two ears was pretty handy too, especially when something really nasty was sneaking up on you from behind, making it hard to see, with or without stereoscopic vision. And eventually it became abundantly clear to most that having the nose situated close to the mouth was helpful for facilitating the interrelated functions of taste and smell; while the disposal of waste was best undertaken when the ass was placed far to the rear.

Some creative life-forms experimented with extra . . .  TO BE CONTINUED TOMORROW. . . .

Available on Amazon , Barnes & NobleKobo, and Smashwords in Digital and Paperback versions.

 This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, organizations, places, events, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

Copyright © 2013 by Gregory James    All rights reserved


About Gregory James

After 20 years working and living overseas, I returned to the US and was disgusted by how partisan and polarized the country had become. Civility and compromise are now quaint things of the past, replaced by intolerance and the rule of extremes. So I gave up a lucrative career for staring at blank pages and searching for words, in the hope that words might help enact change. Stupid. . . . I know! But after 9 months of labor I birthed forth a book, entitled ONE PERCENT SOLUTION. Reminiscent of Vonnegut, with a dash of Saramago and Fforde, this humorous, satirical, often irreverent romp mocks the absurd we accept to be normal, ridicules the ridiculously low bar we set, and challenges all of us to demand more of ourselves by making light of what is sacred that shackles us.


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