Air: A Grievance

This entry is part 7 of 22 in the series Alternate Histories


Air wasn’t always as light as it is nowadays. When I was a kid, standing upright took real effort, & walking, we felt like Moses parting the Red Sea. The air was a physical presence & our lungs were made of sturdy leather. We had to work for every breath — not like you kids today who can buy cheap bottled air at any gas station. Bones were so dense & muscles so hard from the constant struggle, it was impossible to kill anyone unless you used a lead bullet or sharpened a blade for hours. The sky reached all the way to the ground if there weren’t any trees or buildings nearby to prop it up. We took all our holidays by the shore & dove into the water to escape the sky’s tyranny, savoring as long as we could the illusion of lightness.

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Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

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