Author: Alex Z. Salinas
Erections used to mean something.
This is the summation of my research at the bibliotech. Long before Dr. Claude “Stretch” Kransenberry, “the Grand-Godfather of Teleportation,” untangled the stickiest of equations in quantum entanglement and completed the world’s first teleportation—a fly swatter from his kitchen table to his rooftop—there were planes, trains, and automobiles. Elevators and escalators, too. These were preferred methods of travel. These were the only methods of travel.
But the world has changed the past decade. Teleportation is en vogue. The largest corporations, regulars like Apple and Google, were the first to invest in the initial market-ready devices. The results astonished. Employees exhibited increased efficiency. They slept more, spent zero time commuting. Their job satisfaction reached euphoric highs. Now, most small businesses are on the telegrid—they get tax breaks. Commuting to work is a thing of the past. A choice. The only people who hit the open road now are hippies and ozone-blasters, it’s said.
With all the convenience that teleportation has provided, something’s happened in society. Something big. Something bad. Stretch Kransenberry never anticipated, quantum physicists never calculated, the erections.
I suppose Dr. Stretch earned his nickname. I suppose half the world population does, too. Male molecules, the very atoms of our maleness, once stretched out and relocated then put back together, remain, in certain nether regions, particularly stimulated.
The implication for this peculiar scientific phenomenon goes deep. Where erectile dysfunction used to be the talk of the town, now it’s erection dysfunction. Teleporting men, on average, experience erection dysfunction (ED2) for one hour up to several hours. Wealthier men have invested in personal teleportation—via the smaller, luxury model TRX-XX-MP3—to overcome their shortcomings, enhance their sex lives.
Men across the country—across the world—now regularly saunter around with obtrusions in their trousers. They’re everywhere afflicted with ED2. “Teleportation Trick.” God’s cruel joke on man for playing Him; His proverbial bird-flip to the sensible laws of quantum physics. Teleportation Trick is, in a word, real. Worse, it’s incurable. For now.
We’re in a bad spot. Women everywhere are scared. You can see it in their eyes. Teleporting men behave badly. It’s no secret that for too long, their blood has flowed—congealed—in all the wrong spots. Infidelity is up. Domestic violence is up. Homicides are up. Suicides are up. Penises are up.
There’s a massive case on the ethical outcomes of teleportation brewing, it’s said. It’ll reach the Supreme Court, eventually, and once it does, who knows what’ll happen. There are only two women sitting on the Court, and one of them is unapologetically pro-business. The other, I imagine, is scared—scared she’ll be backed into a corner by her aggressive colleagues, seven of whom are Tricked.
I wonder: In the last sacred rooms on earth—the only sacred rooms there ever were—what do erections mean anymore? What does love mean anymore?
Since the slow first turn of a stone wheel, have we always been headed into this new age?
I admit: Teleportation was fantastic. It felt that way, at least, always left my body reeling with a sense of invincibility. My best work was penned while I was Tricked, I believe. It was charged, undeniably impassioned.
However, a week into using my new bicycle, I’ve slowly adjusted. A consistent burn in my legs tells me something good is happening inside. Something’s rebuilding. Growing naturally.
Speaking of which, I met a beautiful woman today. A walker. Our eyes met. We exchanged no words, just shook hands. To her touch, my body reacted.
I looked down. She was smiling.