Issue > Fiction
Dana Inez

Dana Inez

Dana Inez is a graduate of the M.F.A. program at Sarah Lawrence College. Her work has most recently appeared in Terminus Magazine and Coconut, and is forthcoming in Unsaid

Notes From A Risk Society

There is nothing worse than being overdressed here Jonathan. Tomorrow we advise you say nothing at all here just stare. Something happened between being overdressed here and hello can you hear me here and that is the inexorable build-up of sophisticated weapon systems designed not to be used here. Enter a risk society and take the chance of being probable here. Find those weapon systems and run with them here. You cannot no here. You cannot yes here. But there is nothing we repeat nothing worse than being overdressed here and we need you so badly to know that.

Welcome to the society Jonathan we've been waiting for you patiently. Anything that needs to be found can be found at the front desk. We put everything at the front desk. We believe in the importance of consistency cold hard consistency temporal and otherwise.

Jonathan you haven't yet picked up your uniform. This is clear negligence of Code Number 278 Jonathan. We wish you the best in future endeavors but need you to find time to find time for us Jonathan. We function only in line with your proper attention to your proper responsibilities those that we won't outline but those that you should just know.

Last night we thought we heard you screaming in your sleep Jonathan. Know that this violates Code Number 278. Even if you woke up apologized and got back to your business Jonathan it would still violate Code Number 278. We've also heard complaints about some kind of scratching. Scratching is disgusting Jonathan and it won't be tolerated.

Jonathan you haven't picked up your uniform which we will tell you now is a monogrammed bathrobe. This action is an enemy to Code Number 278. Please pick up your monogrammed bathrobe at your earliest convenience preferably now. We assume that because you don't have your monogrammed bathrobe you have not been taking showers and we do not agree with people who do not take showers. This is directly addressed in Code Number 278.

Modern society can be divided into Code Number 278 and the rest. We live in a risk society which means we are obsessed with calculating risk. Technological domination in the natural world has generated high-consequence risks that have a low probability of happening but if happened would be catastrophic. We can help you plan your life accordingly Jonathan. All paperwork is at the front office.

The society doesn't trust people without fashion. We don't trust people without sense without families without logic without obscure resources without failure they've risen up from without high-profile acquaintances without guarded natures without failure that's consistent and unrelenting without nice haircuts without nice demeanors without patience without an education without a language without failure cold hard failure without grievances without hats tons of hats without body hair without failure failure failure failure failure failure without talents without allowances.

There is nothing worse than sabotage here but we realize that's nothing special. There's nothing inventive in sabotage after all it is a concept most people understand. We haven't created a new or radical idea. In other news we've devised your plans for you and they are ready and waiting at the front office. The society never tricks you Jonathan we only ever care for you. If you know anyone who would like to join the society let us know. Applications are open through the seventh month need-blind. Have them read over Code Number 278 before signing or why not have them stop by the front office.

The society doesn't trust people with facial expressions with broken car parts with allegiances with tendencies with diseases with any manifestations with love with manicures with aesthetics with belief systems with computers with drug habits illicit prescription or over-the-counter with unusual height with unusual weight with cash on them with introversion resulting from anything.

We hear you Jonathan. We understand that Code Number 278 is strict in its policies but Jonathan if it is not supposed to be like this than how exactly is it supposed to be Jonathan. You're getting too good-looking Jonathan. The society is against good looks and is also against getting at anything. And yes we understand that we are projecting ourselves on to the situation. We are unabashed. We are going to use our mentality to work through this.

The society realizes that if the situation were reversed we'd have a different perspective. We've dealt with this minor subjectivity. We are having a party to celebrate our newfound ability to empathize. You are invited Jonathan. The whole society will be there.

We need you so badly to know that we caught wind of conclusive evidence that you rarely if at all wear your monogrammed bathrobe. We're ashamed at your inability to recognize your monogrammed bathrobe as a clear symbol that you are part of the society. Put on that bathrobe Jonathan and start living your life.

Jonathan it's OK but not OK but mainly OK that you've chosen to remain silent. Choice is important to the society as is silence. The choice to remain silent is the perfect combination of virtues. The society wishes choice and silence upon everyone.

The society will not tolerate illiterate people power-hungry people people with bad credit people who use their pretty faces for attention feminist people people who scorn our ways but listen to our advice anyway those who appropriate those who forget those who buy us shit when we haven't asked for it people hiding something people trying to pull a fast one on us people filled with platitudes. We hate platitudes. We can't stress this enough Jonathan.

Jonathan we've begun to believe you're not here with us anymore. If this is true be quiet. If this is not true speak up. The society is getting sick of your bullshit. Your bullshit has been devised in accordance to your belief system and has been devised to throw us for a loop. Just think about all the time you are spending devising bullshit and then think about all the time we are spending devising methods to aid in the inexorable build-up of sophisticated weapon systems designed not to be used. Don't think the society doesn't understand because we understand everything even things you have trouble thinking about. You can take that anyway you want Jonathan we will allow it.

Jonathan you have not yet picked up your cross-bearing man on a necklace. You are disregarding the society and we are considering your termination. The cross-bearing man on a necklace along with the monogrammed bathrobe are key features of our society. Without these we will have no choice but to indulge ourselves in your termination. We will have a party. The whole society will be there.

Everyone in the society loves wearing his or her cross-bearing man on a necklace. We don't understand why you're resisting. The society feels you're physically here but not emotionally here. We feel as though we've made a mistake here that maybe we misjudged your vapidity for appeal. Maybe time away from the society is what you need in order to appreciate us. Maybe at first the newness of it all was very attractive. Maybe you aren't meant for anything long-term anything that could possibly develop into something. We understand your type Jonathan we empathize with your type. We'd actually prefer everyone be a little more like you.

Jonathan the society does not beg nor do we borrow. If you are not picking up your monogrammed bathrobe as a form of silent opposition we think you're being childish and stupid. Consult Code Number 278 in order to get yourself together or why not stop by the front office.

Your termination party is scheduled for two days from now. You are invited Jonathan but if you show up we will assume you do not agree with your termination and we will assume that you want to pick up your monogrammed bathrobe and join us again. The society believes in irony Jonathan we actually tend to get a kick out of it.

The whole society was at your termination party Jonathan. We had ill feelings and aren't ashamed to say we indulged ourselves. It was the most indulgent night of our lives. You could have been there Jonathan. You could have been the life of the party.

We aren't missing you Jonathan. Our society is better without you though we haven't thrown away your monogrammed bathrobe. If you've changed your mind let us know Jonathan. Applications are open through the seventh month need-blind. We encourage you to read over Code Number 278 before signing or why not stop by the front office.


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