Monday, January 5, 2009

Senator Stuart Smalley!

It is with great glee that I note that Al Franken has officially won his senate race. Not only will C-SPAN2 be more entertaining, but this is the final bit of proof that we live in our own alternate universe. I think a switch got flipped back in 1998 or so, giving us, among other incongruities, Dubya instead of Jeb. (Also, in the alternate universe we elected a black guy named Barack Hussein Obama. Seriously! Look it up!)

I think I'm obsessed with alternate histories -- mostly from WWII to the present -- because I don't have a good feel for exactly how stable our society is. How could the past eight (or fifty) years been different, for better or for worse? Where is the tipping point where we slide into totalitarianism? What if 9/11 never happened? What if it was worse? What if Kerry won in 2004? What if Bush died, and Cheney had been president since 2002? I've inhaled Jo Walton's alternate histories, as well as some Philip Roth, and I cannot wait for people to start tackling Bush years.

Happy 2009 to you all. Let's make sure this alternate history doesn't get shelved under "dystopia".

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