Shaggy Dog

Written 17 December 1999

Soberty <kmtk at casema.net> wrote:

Ramses I, (died circa 1314 D.B) succeeded Horemheb, the founder of the XIX dynasty, ruled a year, and was succeeded by his son Seti I.
[. . .]

One day the old Pharoah took his son aside. "Tell me the truth, son. Why do you think we've been building all these pyramids?"

The boy was silent for a moment. He wasn't sure how to express the growing feeling he've had that everything around him simultaneously was meaningless and had a higher meaning; that everything he had been told was simultaneously a lie and a pathway to a higher truth. Finally he said:

"It doesn't have anything to do with immortality, I know that. I've snuck into some of the old tombs and if those dried-up old geezers aren't dead I don't know what is."

The Pharoah smiled. "That's right. Anything else?"

"Well...they don't make people immortal. And they're too damn big and troublesome to make to be simple tombs. But they have to be important; we spend too much time, energy, and money on them for them to just be a gimmick. And it's got to be something that most people wouldn't understand or would oppose; otherwise everyone would know what they really were for. But...I can't think of anything that would apply."

His father said, "Exactly correct. I think you're ready now for me to tell you what they're for.

"Years ago one of our ancestors came across...something. It was smooth and metallic. And large. At first he thought it might be a rock, but it seemed like it had been...fashioned. But not made by any techniques we've ever heard of. And it was in the middle of the desert, in the middle of a crater, as if it had just fallen there.

"Finally he came to the only possible conclusion: That it had been created by intelligent beings that dropped it from the sky. Extraterrestrial beings.

"Ever since that day every member of our family has had the dream of speaking to one of these beings...trading with them...learning from them. But how to attract their attention?"

Seti I interrupted: "Geometric objects! If they see a large geometric object that wouldn't have occurred naturally then they might come to investigate!" He looked out towards the pyramids with awe. "But why not tell the people? Everyone should know!"

The Pharoah shook his head sadly. "Many would not believe us, and those that did might be afraid. And they might want to deal with the aliens themselves; it would be difficult to get them to work together on the pyramids if they all were coming up with their own schemes to get in touch with the aliens. And we don't have the wherewithal to complete the project by ourselves; we need their help. If the cost of pyramids came down we might have a time when every family has a Seti at home, but that time is not yet."

His son reluctantly nodded in agreement.


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