Dead Again

Charlie knew he was dead, but he didn’t know how dead.   He could still see and hear, even walk around, so how dead was he?   He believed he was a good man.  Charlie loved his wife and family.  He went to church every Sunday.   He owned a four bedroom house, family car, and flat-bed truck.  Charlie worked at “Escadrille Dynamics.”   The firm manufactured slim-chips and dots for the burgeoning Information & Entertainment industry.  Charlie was a copywriter for the advertising division.   He had no direct connection to programming and hardware development.  Intriguing new entertainments and improved technologies were changing the world.  Charlie’s life was easy, smooth as glass, until he woke up and discovered he was dead.   He didn’t understand the situation … people no longer noticed him … he was dead AND invisible.   He could see his wife going about her daily chores without realizing Charlie was gone — as if he never existed.  At work, his name had been erased.  Even though he was dead, he thought about committing suicide to get out of his current dilemma.  “Can a dead man commit suicide?” he wondered.   Charlie sought answers and drifted deeper into the newly opened void.  “Is there a light at the end of the tunnel,” he mused.   Suddenly he was on stage and klieg lights were blinding him.  He heard a low, sardonic voice like the murmur of a mortician – it was the announcer, “Welcome Charlie to Dead and Loving It.”  Charlie realized he was a contestant on a new,  reality-based game show.  It was like “Survival” for the newly dead.  When he was alive he heard something about the new format, but didn’t believe it.  He remembered a rumor about a new show that would turn the industry upside-down and make a fortune for the company, but the premise of the show seemed impossible: ejecting people from their normal lives to see how they react as dead.  Charlie couldn’t figure out how it was done, but now he knew it was true because now he was dead.

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