Two large automatic doors open up with a whoosh sound. A burst of bright white light engulfs the scene, shining into my eyes, illuminating everything around me. As my eyes adjust to the light, something blurry is situated in the white light of the room. As my eyes get more into focus, I make out the blue outline of what seems to be a logo of sorts. Then the sharp lines of a letter come into focus. It’s a stylized “W” set in a circle and situated in the center of a pure white wall. I walk into this gigantic room and the sliding doors close and air lock behind me. All is silent around here. It is a pure white chamber. To my far left I see a pearly white podium; I slowly walk over to it, looking around carefully for any signs of trip wire or traps, but nothing happens as I reach the stand. Set into this podium is a tabletop computer and there is a program already loaded up on it. It consists of a blank writing box with a box for a title on top of it. There is a “Publish” button at the bottom of the page. Above the title box, in lowercase letters, is the word “macbofisbil”, which is a name I created, but as far as why it is suddenly being used here, I have no idea.
A voice suddenly booms in the still air. I look up, startled.
“Welcome to WordPress. Are you ready to write your first post?” It is a very Big Brother, “1984” sounding voice. Authoritative, commanding, mysterious.
I look around the futuristic clean room, wondering where this disembodied voice came from.
“Um, I don’t know. How did I get here? What is this place? What’s WordPress?”
The disembodied voice, seeming to come from all around this sanitized chamber, speaks again:
“This is the blog department of WordPress, a free and open source blogging website. You are in the user level section. If you recall registering for a WordPress blog yesterday, than you have come to the right place. You won’t remember how you got here because you were drugged and blindfolded so you wouldn’t see where we were located, how to get here, keeping our whereabouts secretive.”
“Oh, I see. Am I the only one here? Where is everyone else?”
“Oh, there are lots of others here, in different areas. This is your area, where you will write your daily posts, but you can communicate with other bloggers through our revolutionary built in system.”
I look around again at this room, something out of a dream no doubt. There doesn’t seem to be any doors other than the entrance way. The ceiling, walls, and floor are all alike, hard to tell which is which.
So this is WordPress. Why they don’t want me to know where it is located is a pondering question.
What will I write for my very first post? Thoughts of my summer so far are in my mind. Maybe I’ll write about going camping soon this summer, setting up the tent in my yard, all the trouble we goofs went through.
As if it was reading my thoughts, the voice softly spoke: “So you’re going to write about your pre-camping rituals? Are you sure that will make for a good post?”
“Yes, I believe it is a good start, a way to channel some of my thoughts. I mean, this is my first post, where can I go wrong? I have nothing to measure it against.”
“That’s a good way to think about it, but remember, first impressions are important, make your first post a good one, put your heart into it. It’s your decision to how you want to approach it but we are not liable for any mishaps you may have. Are you ready then?”
I stare at the blank screen, no idea of what I am getting into, what lies ahead, but the excitement of starting something so brand new in my life finally makes me say “Yes.”
“Okay. To get started, just touch the screen.”
I do so and the tabletop screen suddenly rises into an inclined position, enabling me to see it better. A keyboard is revealed after a sliding door opens in the podium. It is now the traditional desktop computer, though I’m not sure if this is Windows, Mac, or some proprietary system owned by this WordPress. A panel in the floor also opens and a chair rises out it. It is a nice looking chair, egg shaped, with a swivel bottom. I sit down in this and suddenly my mind is clear. A great burst of energy pulses through my body. I feel like writing! This seat is magical, soothing, releasing tension in my muscles. I press a button on the arm of the chair labeled “Forward” and the chair advances toward the computer station. My fingers touch the keys, and after some thought, I write down my very first words.
Surviving in the wild will be a interesting endeavor for me and a small number of others in my family. The new link in the chain, the bearded, obnoxious man named Charles, will be coming with us. As far as his anti-social cat named Bubbles, well, he’ll be eating food out the dish of one of Chaz’s friends.
Getting back from swimming, in which I received a job offer from the Nokia girl and tried to get the illusive tan, Uncle Jack said he had a present for me in the trunk of Emily’s car. Whenever my uncle says he has a “present” for me, I usually think it will be something small and worthless. But when he popped open the trunk, a medium sized duffel bag was before my eyes. This was the brand new tent for our camping trip in August, the one we will sleep in while trying to fend for ourselves in the ruthless wild. Okay, so it’s not going to be that bad, not like we’re going to have a bear walk into our camp and demand we give up our food or else. No, this place will be enclosed and monitored but will feel like old fashioned camping: cooking food over a fire pit of wood, fishing, fending off the mosquitoes, hanging clothes on a line strung from tree A to tree B.
The only other time I had been camping in my life was at Mystic Lake in fifth grade, when I was a naïve eleven year old with no knowledge of the world except what was in front of me. All I knew was what was in my innocent mind, my little elementary school, the then so-intimidating camp counselors looking like big responsible adults to me when in fact they were in about eleventh or twelfth grade, only a few years older than I. Unlike what we will have on our future camping trip, there were cabins and large heated bathrooms with showers. I had to get up and use the bathroom so many times during my first night that the counselor in our cabin who was in charge of us started to get annoyed. My flashlight led the way and I, scared of monsters popping out in the woods, ran to the bathroom and back up the stairs into cabin safety quickly.
Getting the ruddy tent up took a bit of work, but after some help from Chaz, the man with the know-it-all attitude and technology that could rival the U.S. government, we managed to pitch the tent in no time. The problem was getting those pesky poles into their foot slots. They had to be precariously bended, the tent being shifted to and fro, stretching it out. What we were left with was a modest 10 by 8 foot tent with enough room for about four to five people, depending on size.
Of course I wanted to sleep in the tent the first night so that’s exactly what happened, with the addition of Jack. With a few blankets and a small, uncomfortable pillow, along with my phone that I call my extended arm, I made it through my first night under the stars.
From my first day of school to now being an amateur tent-maker, I have learned the ropes and have experienced life. There is still a long road unwinding for me and where it takes me I will soon find out. Only I can decide that. Right now though, I am lying on the floor of a tent, listening to the wind and rain pattering the roof, the cars rumbling by, and the sound of water dripping and splattering into the mud pit we call a garden.
After I look over the post and add some finishing touches to it, I happily hit the “Publish” button. A congratulatory message pops up, telling me I have published my very first post and should tell the world about it on various social media sites. Why not? My first steps into this exciting world have been taken, my flag planted. Now I’ll wait to see what the response is from the other bloggers hiding away in their various compartments of this complex that is probably so enormous I could fit 2,000 copies of my house into it.
A few days later:
I check back on my first post. It received just 1 like and no comments. Oh well, it’s a start. I wasn’t expecting it to go viral or anything.