surveillance cameras

With 1984 Big Brother in 2010, Nude Day is now everyday and everywhere.

Testing 1, 2, 3, smile for the camera. Action! 1984 is here in 2010 and Big Brother is watching you.

Now with satellite communication, Nude Day is not just one day a year, it’s every day. There’s no hiding from the cameras, the cameras are everywhere. Peek-a-boo, they can see you. There’s no hiding from Big Brother. With a God like omniscient presence, he’s everywhere, too. Even when you think you are alone, he sees you. You’re not alone. You’re never alone.

The age old question of are we alone, was never meant to have been asked and answered in this way. Wanting to know if there are other life forms in the universe, we addressed the question to aliens. We never intended to ask the question of surveillance cameras. To answer the question, are we alone? No, never, there is always someone watching everything we do. Look up, look down, look all around, there are cameras everywhere and more every day watching your every move. There are even cameras recording you from outer space, cameras you cannot see and don’t even know are there.

Don’t touch that. Don’t do that. Don’t say that. Don’t even think that because whatever you touch, do, say, and think may be used against you in a court of law. You’re screwed. You’re fucked. Smile, you’re on candid camera, literally.

What if those satellite cameras, the ones that can read a license plate number from outer space were turned, directed, and poised inward at the inhabitants of Earth and at you undressing for bed in your tiny apartment or making love in the backseat of your car at lover’s leap? Imagine what and who they could see. Yet, for what purpose?

Well, what if you owned those satellites and were looking for a certain someone, wanting to know what she did 24/7? Do you think the satellite’s camera could find her, one person from out of billions of people? What if you found her and now were intent on watching her without her knowing? Imagine the possibilities.

Certainly, it would help if the camera knew where to look to find her and that’s where ground surveillance comes into play. Working as a team, they’d identify the subject they wanted to watch first, before sending her coordinates, merely a GPS code, to outer space. It’d be even easier if they could tag her, put a bug, a remote transmitter in her bag, on her person, somewhere inside her house, and on her car, so much as if tracking an endangered species. Something that not even George Orwell imagined when he wrote 1984, are we no longer safe from the watchful, invading, and recording eye of Big Brother? I dare say, no.

When you ponder the power of satellite surveillance and GPS codes, the fact that our government claims it cannot find Osama bin Laden is, in a word, bullshit. I’d be willing to bet that they know what he ate for breakfast today. Our government has lied to us before. Actually, when has our government not lied to us?

What if those satellite cameras, the ones that can read a license plate number from outer space were turned, redirected, and poised outward to the vast universe. What could they see? Certainly we have that capability already with the Hubel telescope, but what if the Hubel telescope was given new coordinates and, as part of its routine of watching and recording the vast universe, was instructed to send a signal, a beacon, a live television broadcast feed 24/7 of just one reality based program ala The Truman Show, only, instead of a man, this time with a woman on display in all of her splendor? Imagine watching an X-rated exhibitionism and voyeurism show from outer space.

Not intended for us to see, who else would see it? Who would watch it? Would they pay to see it? Would they even know what it was? Who knows? That’s what was hoped to discover.

It wouldn’t take much to accomplish the mission, lots of money, a dedicated satellite, some new computer codes, a powerful transmitter, and a specific antenna to record whatever was received. What if one man had the resources to create such a satellite, a new, super satellite, named Project Julia, who’s only function was to send live images 24/7 of the human form, a naked woman, in the hopes of contacting who knows what? Why? Why not?

We know they’re out there. From the times of the pyramids and before, we already have the evidence that we’ve been visited many times before. Who made the pyramids? Certainly, not man alone. References in every holy book, including the Bible, have references of alien beings. We even found their airport carved from a mountaintop, the Nazca lines in Peru. Vimanas were flying machines, depictions of UFO’s, as described by our ancient ancestors. Who created those giant monolithic statues at Easter Island? Puma Punku in Bolivia has stones that a master stone cutter using modern day machinery would not only have a nearly impossible time moving in place but also carving the intricate patterns found on the stones. More recently, we’ve been receiving radio signals from deep space.

We know we’re not alone and now we have the technology to find out who else or what else is out there. Only, what are they? Where are they? Do we really want to know?

Naked in our human form, from local to national to global and now universal, with the placement of the Project Julia aka Job Julia satellite in orbit, nudity is now part of the vast universe. Nude Day is now every day. With the advent of the latest technology that broadcasts a live reality television feed of a nude woman at the end of a directed and powerful laser beam, our naked transmission is shot from Earth into outer space in the hopes of making contact with alien life forms. Traveling at the speed of light, there’s no telling who, what or when they will receive it and who, what, and when they will respond.

It’s exciting to think that whoever put up the satellite owns the rights to whatever is received in the transmission. Since no one owns outer space, there are no laws that prohibits a private pioneer from exploring and exploiting alien beings and other life forms. As matter of fact, as a way of replenishing their recent budget cuts, NASA encourages private participation. Imagine the possibilities, a new age market for beer, Viagra, and fast food commercials.

Forget about cable contracts, sports athletes will expect larger payment for interstellar sports specials. The Wide World of Sports will change its name to the Vast Universe of Sports. Baseball’s World Series will become the Intergalactic Series. God only knows what kind of athletic competition we’d see in the Olympics, after inviting aliens to participate.

Unlike so many women today looking for fame and fortune and who’d take their shirts and bras off at the first sight of a camera, Julia was the type of woman who’d never remove her clothes in public. She viewed public nudity as immoral and immodest. Not that she was a prude, but she was a good girl and was saving herself for that one special someone, her husband, whoever he may be. A product of the corn fields of the mid west and moving east to Cambridge Massachusetts to attend graduate school at Harvard University, she never celebrated Nude Day. Already on the corporate fast track with her first job interview, she had better things to do with her time than to party naked.

A dream come true, she was so very excited, as well as she should be, interviewing for a position of power, her first job, at that, and for of all people, one of the richest men in the world, Jerick Blankenship, JB. What should she wear? Her navy blue business suit with her matching high heels and her white blouse. Yes, that’s conservative enough.

She was so very young and so very naive. Tall and shapely, she was so very beautiful, even with her hair pulled back, especially with her hair pulled back. It really didn’t matter how she wore her hair. She could have shaved her head and she’d still be stunning.

A classic American beauty, it was her face, her high cheek bones, her perfect chin, her upturned nose and, especially her big, beautiful, green cat eyes, and not her hair that grabbed your attention and held your interest. Yet, when she wore her hair down is when you truly believed in God because no one else could make someone as beautiful. Indeed, she was a sight to behold and every man who saw her wanted to hold her, marry her, and claim her as his own.

It should be illegal for someone to look as good. If she were a product, the IRS would tax her for her beauty. If she was a menu selection, you’d make a meal out of her and savor every mouthful. If she were a rare, fine wine, you’d open her only on a very special occasion and appreciate the color and the aroma of her, before taking a sip, finishing off the bottle, and running out to buy a case of Julia. If she were a diamond, you’d horde her by putting her in a velvet lined box in a locked vault somewhere safe. For sure, if she was anything, she was the key to the happiness of the man who won her heart. If she were your woman, you’d want her all to yourself and would never share her with the rest of the universe. Right?

One in a million, so very special, she was every man’s dream woman. She was just out of grad school having graduated top of her class, suma cum-laude with a perfect 4.0 average. Everything about her was perfect and she was the perfect candidate for JB to work, as his executive, personal and very private assistant, for his high definition, digital television, worldwide cable company, Monitor, Inc. As if destiny had chosen her name, from out of all the names she could have been named, her name was Julia.

Julia. Her name was Julia. How perfect was that? Julia was Winston’s love interest in George Orwell’s book 1984, Jerick Blankenship’s favorite book.

JB couldn’t believe it, when he opened her file supplied to him by his people. He had a stack of more than a thousand women from which to chose, but none of them were anything like her. First he saw her photo and watched the DVD of the camera surveillance of her in all manner of dress and undress, then he saw her name from her resume. Never had he seen a woman as beautiful and her body was as good as her face.

As always, the professional people he hired to do his video surveillance were ex military, Delta Forces preferred, and generally retired CIA and NSA agents. Invisible and adept at leaving no clues or mess behind for the police to stumble over, they had a knack for being in plain view, but somehow disappearing in the background. They knew how to do surveillance that ex-law enforcement would balk at getting involved for fear of tarnishing their reputations, losing their retirement, and being arrested.

Once they found her, once she was targeted as the subject of interest, her apartment was wired for sight and sound. Certainly not his intention or his main focus, but he had a lot of video of her naked. She lived on the top floor of a three story walkup and when she wasn’t walking around in her bra and panty, she was walking around naked. With her house the tallest one on the street, he imagined she figured that no one could see her. Shot with telephoto lenses and with shots from his passing satellite peppered in, in addition to the cameras hidden in her apartment, there wasn’t any part of her naked body that he hadn’t captured on camera. He had enough footage to make a naked video collage of her.

It didn’t matter if she masturbated in the dark, stealthily repelling off the side of her building, his people had night scopes with night vision. For sure, she’d put on a good show, just being herself, just going on about her business. Only, it’d be better if she had a boyfriend. It’d be better, if he could make a sex video of her. It’d be better, if he could show her in action. No problem, he’d take care of that later. It wouldn’t be difficult finding her a man. He’d have a thousand volunteers for that job, that’s for sure.

Believing in the value and the serendipity of circumstance, putting intrinsic stock in being at the right place at the right time, her beauty and her name is what caught his attention, but not a shallow man nor a perverted man, he wasn’t excited by her nudity. It was her qualifications that excited his interest. He only hired the best of the best.

Normally, as he did with everyone he hired, he’d send an aide to interview her, but she was different. He had to meet her in person. He had to know if she was as spectacular in person, as she was on paper and on video, for that matter.

Call it kismet, call it fate, call it more reason to believe that JB’s destiny had been preplanned and predetermined, he could not have made a more perfect woman than this woman, his beloved Julia, had he created her himself. The fact that her name was Julia was just further proof that their lives were meant to intertwine. He had waited a long time to meet her, nearly all of his life, really, since the first time he read George Orwell’s book, 1984, well before she was even born and now, here she was before him.

You’d think with a master’s degree in business with a minor in communications, that she’d be overqualified to work as a mere executive assistant for anyone, even for this man. Yet, the job was hardly a clerical one and was so much more than that and had too much responsibility to define with a single title, as just an executive assistant. Yet, what did her title matter?

Whether she was called his Executive Assistant or his Vice-President in charge of personnel or his Chief of Staff, she’d become his right arm, his eyes, his ears, and his voice. She’d be one of his closest advisors. Serving a dual purpose, the star of his interstellar video, she’d be the one that he’d put in front of the podium and the camera to answer the questions of the public and to respond to the heat of the press. It would be her job to put out his fires. It would be her job to quell the public’s uncertainty, so that he could concentrate on more important things.

She’d be the public’s perception of him, his persona, and the woman behind the man. She’d be his face and what a face it was. She’d be the one the public would see and would love to hate or would be so enamored with her beauty, poise, and charm, that they’d want to see more of her on the big screen. Only, who could hate such a face and body as that?

Much in the way that the great Oz, in the Wizard of Oz, remained behind the closed curtain, much in the way that Erik, the Phantom of the Opera, hid behind his mask, and much in the way that any CEO of a multi-billion dollar corporation is far removed from employees and insulated from the public, JB was okay with giving her and having her have such a starring role with the public. Working with and controlling the press, much in the way of the President’s Press Secretary, a very high profile position, indeed, she’d be the person that all questions and all publicly spun comments would funnel through, while he disappeared in the distance to focus on the creation of his new technology. The role better suited her than him. She’d be perfect.

He needed time to invent, design, and control the future. Allowing her the free reign to manipulate the present, before it morphed into the past, he didn’t have the time to waste with any of that nonsense. He had devoted enough time to things that were already done, when there was so little time and so much, yet, to do.

After working for him and working closely with him, she’d learn to know his wants and needs intuitively. He needed to have someone like that and like her working for him to allow him what he does best without having to waste his time on bothersome minutia and become mired down in petty details, while answering absurd questions at a press conference. That would be her job.

Closed to the general public, he arranged to meet her for lunch at a restaurant he hired for the day. Busy but not too busy to meet with her, it was his decision to meet her personally. Informally, this was her interview, but as far as he was concern, she already had the job.

“So, tell me,” she said hoping to get him to talk about himself and bide her more time to think of her appropriate responses to his anticipated questions.

The interview had taken on the aura of a chess match, only, normally a formidable adversary, she was now unsure of her next move. As if walking on piano wire stretched across the Grand Canyon with a tail wind, he was a complex man and one false move on her part would put an end to the interview and her chance at landing her dream job. Literally with whatever she said, showing him that she could control him at her interview in the way that she needed to control the press at a press conference, she needed to land on her feet, so as not to be toss out on her head.

Nonetheless, asking about him was her tactic to gain his friendship and earn his trust. She needed to not only maintain his interest but also make this interview and her memorable and what better way to do that than to have the man talk about himself? There were many candidates applying for this one position, no doubt, and they’d all be talking about their accomplishments and about themselves, rather than about him.

He was the man in the spotlight and not them. They were nothing without him and she needed to massage his ego a bit to get him oiled up enough for where she needed him to be, impressed, to get this job. Besides, put on the spot by his unexpected appearance, she needed more time to formulate her appropriate responses. Only, unbeknownst to her, she was already hired. Already more than impressed with her, he was smitten by her. He was a man accustomed to making on the spot decisions, albeit informed ones, and as soon as he saw her, she had the job.

“Tell you what? What else can I possibly tell you that isn’t already out there on the Internet,” he said with a wave of his hand and cutting her off in mid thought. “I’m an open book,” he said with a laugh, while looking at her, as if reading her and knowing her without even having to ask her who she was.

“Yes,” she said. “That’s true,” suddenly feeling uncomfortable by his invasive stare. “There is much information about you, but I suspect there is a lot of false information and purposely leaked information that you’ve released, as a way to manipulate the press, and as a deflection to throw them off track.”

“Yes. Very good, indeed, but,” he said. “Haven’t you read my latest unauthorized biography? It’s full of supposition. Whenever they cannot find the truth about me, they make it up hoping that I’ll contest what they’ve written to give them a bestseller. What does it matter?” With a chuckle, he waved a nonchalant hand, before giving her a measured look and, with a toss of his head, as if exhaling a puff of smoke from a cigarette, he said, “It’s all quite the work of fiction and best to leave it alone for the public to formulate their own opinions about me, which is where you come in to improve my public image.”

“You have the money, the power, and the influence, why don’t you sue them?”

“That’s what they want,” he said with self-assuredness. “They want me to give their insults life, longevity, and credibility with a long, court proceeding that titillates readers and onscreen viewers. I’ve watched them long enough to know what they have done to others before vowing they’d never do that to me.”

“You’re right, I’m sure,” she said already thinking of ways to insulate him and to protect him from such nonsense, should she get the job.

“It’s all a game they play with the hopes of separating me from some of my money, hoping I’ll settle out of court to make them rich before going away to retry the same tactic later. Once you acknowledge them and give in to them, once you give what they say and write about you credibility and believability, they’ll never leave you alone. Even if I didn’t settle out of court and won the court case, in the meantime, they’d make a lot of money off of my legal embroilments, maybe even turn their unauthorized bestseller into a movie. I don’t want any more fame and infamous attention to what I do than what I already have now. If anything, I need secrecy to continue my work.”

“I see,” she said, while wondering what could she really do for this man, when he already had all the answers.

Then, she realized that he was looking for someone to take that role. Perhaps, he was tired of having all the answers. Perhaps, he didn’t have time to handle all of this so unimportant stuff and needed more time to do what he does best, create, invent, and produce the things that people need in global communication.

“Unless you come up with a better idea, trust me, it’s better that I just ignore them. My best defense is to pretend they don’t exist,” he looked at her, as if he could see right through her.

Looking at him, as if he was a gigantic bird of prey, even though she was 5’9″ tall and an inch taller than him, he made her feel so small and so insignificant. Suddenly, she felt a bit like Alice In Wonderland, shrinking from his mere stare. She didn’t like feeling so small. She didn’t like feeling so insignificant, yet, she liked feeling his powerful influence and feeling so protected under his strong wing.

“Unfortunately, you’re a target with a huge dollar sign on your back and you’ve been even more of a target because you’ve been out there in the forefront with no one you’ve trusted enough to run interference for you. I can do that for you. I can handle whatever they have to give,” she said hoping to say all the things she needed to say to make him believe that she could do the job, while hoping it was all the things that he wanted to hear.

“It’s better that the public stays in the dark about who I am and what I do, you understand. I have enough people trying to steal my ideas without having me inspire all of humanity at the detriment of what I need to accomplish. I don’t need anyone meddling in my business affairs. I already have fortune, more money than even I can spend in ten lifetimes. I don’t want or need fame. That’s your job,” he said with a satisfied smile, as if he was the king handling her his robe, his crown, and his scepter, while he disappeared in the background and vanished to become Merlin the Magician.

“I understand, of course,” she said with a smile of total acknowledgement, while assuring herself that they were definitely on the same page about what her responsibilities would be.

“That’s what I’ll be paying you to do, to become famous or infamous, as the case may be,” he said with a laugh, “as my way of deflecting interest from me to you.” He paused to give her an appreciative look. “By your appearance alone, the public will more love you than hate you, I dare say. Perhaps, some of the women will hate you, but the men will never remove their eyes from the screen, whenever you appear on camera and if they hear anything you say, no matter what you said, even if you said the sky was falling, they’ll believe every word of it.”

“I can’t lie for you, if that’s what you need me to do. Lies are always discovered and I’d forever lose my credibility. I’d be of no use to you then, not to mention, I’d ruin my career. There’s a lot of sense in the old adage that the truth will set you free,” she said with a small satisfied smile.

“There’s no reason for you to lie for me or to lie about my business affairs, but spinning the truth is always better than be so forthcoming. Our government does it all the time,” he said giving her a look of admiration that she had become accustomed to and never comfortable with, especially when on an interview for a job. “I can hire anyone to stand up there to talk to the reporters, but I need a special someone, you, to handle the press. There’s a vast difference. It’s those savvy editors and rich and powerful publishers that hide behind their sometimes gullible reporting messengers; they are the ones you must learn to respect, trust, and despise.”

“Surely, it will take me time for me to get up to speed. I’ll need time to learn your business and to intuitively know what to say and what to do, when–”

“Get up to speed? You’re already miles ahead of your competition. Look at you, educated and smart, you are the most beautiful creature I’ve ever seen, more beautiful than the most beautiful bird. Fame more suits you than it does me. The public, I dare say, would rather hear my message coming from your beautiful mouth, than from my ugly puss.”

As if she were a TX9000, the latest satellite invented by the Japanese and copied by the Chinese for half the money, he was satisfied with his latest acquisition. He summed her up with happy contentment, as if hoping to make a fortune by buying a million shares of her stock on the open market for a short sale. There was, suddenly, an uncomfortable silence between them that they’d never again experience. Trying to get a read on him, she contemplated him. It was her move and he waited for her to speak, only one never at a loss for words, she was unsure of what to say.

Preceded by his reputation and with his boyish good looks and flashy white smile, he reminded her of the image she had of how F. Scott Fitzgerald’s character, Jay Gatsby, would look and act, if he was here in the flesh, today. In the way he moved and in the way he talked, with his confident manner and self-assured charm, all of it fortified by the weighted control and the political influence of enormous reserves of wealth and power, JB was a man, who had so much on his plate at any given time, that the mere presence of him, as well as the thought of working for him, overwhelmed her. The reality of him never occurred to her, until he was sitting across from her.

Normally confident, poised, and self-assured, he made her doubt her abilities making her wonder, if she was even right for the job. Yet, he must already know she was the one for the job, otherwise he wouldn’t be sitting here wasting his precious time with her. He must really want her for him to take the time to meet her in person, she thought.

His easy demeanor was contagious. He made her relax, no doubt, his way of disarming his adversaries. Cool and calm, good at verbally jousting, he cut off the heads of his dragons in his boardroom, where he did all his battles and where few gained admission. He never fought his fights in public.

Disarming and disabling his competition in the process and enabling everyone who challenged him defenseless, JB had a carefree attitude about him that lulled those into misunderstanding him and underestimating him, even so much as thinking him tame and even so much as lame. His father had started this business, after all, and for those who thought he was anything like his father were sadly mistaken and rudely awakened in a boardroom fight with him. He was driven and thinking him tame was their folly and underestimating him as lame was their undoing.

Definitely, not wild, he was assuredly not tame nor lame. Calculating and logical, in the way of the Vulcan Spock, he wasn’t as emotionally charged and driven, as was Captain Kirk. Those who thought they’d get the better of him, never saw him coming, until it was too late.

She was unprepared and ill equipped to combat him for the job during this impromptu interview and she feared, she may be losing the contest to another better armed adversary. The worst thing she could do was to relax. The worst thing she could do was to look weak, confused, and unconfident. She couldn’t allow him to rattle her.

If she couldn’t handle the pressure of him, one man, now, even such a man as him, how would she handle the heat of a hundred reporters later? Yet, if she could handle such as man as him now, well, no one ever has, she’d gain his confidence. She needed to stay focused and keep her wits about her and not be taken in by his charisma and by the omniscient reputation that preceded him.

It was easy, too easy to surrender to him and she knew enough about him that he needed someone who’d put up a fight, before being overpowered and taken by him. She knew enough about him that he didn’t want a yes man or a defenseless woman; he didn’t want another rooster in the henhouse or another bitch in his kitchen. She knew that he liked things just the way they were, only he needed someone to care for the garden he had already planted to make sure that nothing he put in place be changed, while the new crop he was growing had the time to flourish in the dark and in secret.

If she was to work for him as his public persona, if she was to handle the press on a daily basis, then every response she made now needed to be thoughtful and measured to show him she could do the job. She needed to adopt a strategic plan of defense, so as not to be put on the offense by a question he’d surely ask that surprised her. Just as he was good at making people feel comfortable, before going for the jugular, she needed to be more like him. For sure, she didn’t want to be one of his victims, not now, and not yet, anyway. She needed to make him believe in her ability to do the job, just as much as she believed that she could do the job. Without doubt, it would be very challenging working for such a man.

Having learned all she could about the company and about him, she figured he’d be all business with numbers, facts, and statistics and she was ready for all of that. Yet, he surprised her. Leaving that information for his battery of accountants and entourage of personal assistants, he was so much more approachable and easy to talk to than she thought he’d be.

Already, making her feel at ease, doing to her what she had wanted to do to him, he had reversed the table on her. This was his test of her. Nonetheless, she already liked and trusted him. Yet, he had an aloofness about him, an impenetrable armor that protected his secrets. If she imagined that he had many skeletons hidden in his closet, she’d be right.

“How did you, one man, ala Ted Turner,” she said laughing away her nervousness, while knowing that Ted Turner was his inspiration, as much as his adversary, “start a worldwide cable communication company so vast, when there was so much competition in such a growing, changing, and redefining market?”

“That’s easy,” he said. She watched him, learning from his posture and, instead of leaning back to savor his success, he leaned forward and rested his elbows on the table, as if ready to whisper her a secret of what was next on his agenda. “I was ready for it. I always knew I’d do something like this. This was my destiny, after all,” he said with a smug and confident smile.

“You were?” She sat enthralled buying into what he wanted to tell her, sell her, and what she needed to hear to learn. “How so?

“Rather than creating television programs, theatre, and shows I hoped the world would embrace and watch, rather than being at the mere hat in hand mercy of sponsors, prima donna actors, actresses, directors, and producers, rather than giving away all my profits to network syndication and to talent that have suddenly found the eye of the public and the pomposity of star power, how better to control what people watch on television than to be the behind the scenes service provider?” With a God like wave of his hand, as if painting a priceless Picasso, before putting it on display at a museum, he said, “I merely provide a much needed and necessary service, the same as any utility company.” He gave a smug little laugh, as if he was enjoying a private joke and he was, but the joke was on her.

“You have it all figured out,” she said, “don’t you?”

“I do, but I didn’t have to figure anything out. As if it was scripted, it was fated to be this way. Only,” he said, “as a mere service provider, not dependent upon fossil fuels and burdened by costly labor, my costs are much lower and my profits much higher. People love their high definition, cable television so much so that they can’t spend an hour away from the television due to lost power. They wouldn’t know what to do with themselves, should they suddenly have no cell phone, TV, and Internet. Why, I dare say, they’d be suicidal after a day of not having global communication,” he said with a mad scientist like laugh.

“Control?” Carefully listening to and analyzing his every word, thinking first before speaking and not being as impulsive with her words, as she usually is, she felt pressured to not make a false step or a bad impression. Still she persevered. “Service and control are at odds with one another, are they not?”

“Don’t be so naive, Julia,” he said with the appropriate pause in honor of her name. It was obvious that he was a man who had an answer for everything and she waited with baited breath to hear it. “Much in the way that a public servant controls every aspect of your little uninspired life, of course, I don’t mean you specifically, I control what every household watches, that is, for the matter of a bloated monthly service fee.”

“I see,” she said. “That’s one way to explain something in a way I’ve never considered.”

She was in awe of him. It was then that she realized that she could learn so much from this man. Only, just as she thought it, he said it.

“Not everything can be found in a book, Julia,” he said her name, as if he was saying it for the first time and savoring it, while in bed with her naked. “You can learn a lot from me and I’m willing to take the time to teach you.”

“Why take the time to teach me anything, when you can hire anyone, someone who is more experienced for the position.”

“You mean hire someone who already has experience of not succeeding, someone who’s already failed, which is why he or she is looking for a new job,” he said looking at her, as if she was a car he was considering taking for a test drive, before buying. “With you, I can mold. With you, I can instruct you in everything you need to watch my back,” he said, while studying her.

“You make a good argument, one that is contrary to what other employers deem important, experience over enthusiasm and malleability.”

“It’s funny, after reaching a position of such power, wealth, and influence, the basic human traits are the things that I regard the most, honesty, loyalty, and dedication. I see all of those qualities in you, something that is missing from those who have already worked for another, grown weary and disillusioned, before being flushed out of the system. One day, no doubt, after you are done with me, after I have taken all that I can use of you and you of me, you will be the same, but for now, you are my diamond in the rough.”

“What if I’m the rare exception and work for you for the next thirty years,” she said smiling her confidence through her glass, as she made solid eye contact with him, while taking a sip of her wine.

“Ah, then, you’d be the rare commodity, a beautiful flower that would blossom and grow as powerful as I needed you to grow. I’d want nothing more for you than to have you succeed in this position. It would ease my mind of these responsibilities allow me to continue my work elsewhere, Julia.”

No one had ever said her name in quite that way before and she liked how he enunciated each syllable of her name. He pronounced it, as if he was chewing it. He was the first man she had ever met, who undressed her with his mind, instead of with his eyes and she felt naked and exposed in his presence. Astutely, she realized that there was nothing she could hide from him without him knowing that she wasn’t forthcoming. As if he had seen her naked and vulnerable before, if only she knew he had, it was as if he could see who she really was. He made her feel defenseless and now, he volunteered to be her teacher, and, yet, to what end?

“If nothing else, Mr. Blankenship–”

“Please, call me JB.”

“Alright,” she said with a smile, as if she had just scored a point in his favor. “If nothing else, JB, my education has given me the foundation that I need to prepare for the job as your Executive Personal Assistant,” she said wishing she hadn’t said that, as soon as she said it, and in the way she had said it.

Her pitch for the position sounded as unprofessional as it was desperate. Had she been interviewing with human resources for a lower level position, what she had said about being prepared for the position would have been perfectly fine, but this was Jerick Blankenship, JB, the President and CEO or Monitor, Inc, one of the richest men in charge of one of the biggest corporations in the world. Yet, notwithstanding, she wanted him to know that she wanted the job and she was glad when he ignored what she had said by not dignifying it with a response.

Immediately, she knew he’d be a man who’d challenge her, and just as it would be some time, before she was capable enough to meet his challenge, it would be some time, before she became bored working for him. The thought of working for him excited her and she never wanted anything in the way that she wanted this job now.

“Your accomplishments precede you, Julia. You mustn’t waste your time selling me on you. I’m already interested, I’m already sold, otherwise I wouldn’t have come here in person. This is an important job and based upon this rare personal interview that I’ve granted you, it’s your job to lose. I don’t have to tell you that. Being in the heart of my innermost circle of my trusted advisers, you’ll be an integral part of my operation.”

“Tell me more about you being the service provider. I find that part of this interview fascinating,” she said liking more what she just said.

This was how to get him to talk more about himself and about his company. This was what she needs to do to land this job. She could tell by his facial expression, eager to tell her about his company, that she was on the right track.

“Much in the way as Bill Gates and Windows is in the background, as the operating system for the computer, I’m the technical uplink between the creative energy and financial minds for televised networks,” he said with a satisfied laugh. “The writers, producers, directors, and actors do all the work for me by making the shows, be it a movie, a situation comedy, a documentary, or world news. It’s of no consequence to me if they win an award or flop. Innocuously remaining in the background, I just broadcast what they’ve generously created and so professionally stated.”

“You’re much like a utility company in that regard,” she said with a smile, repeating back his own words.

“I am,” he said returning her smile with a satisfied one. “For me, as it does for them, it all starts with a signal and that signal, transmitted by my satellites, are mine. I own them. Without me and my company and all the companies like mine, there is no TV, no Internet, no telephone, and no worldwide communication. Without my satellites, everything will be quiet and everyone will be bored. Think of me as the sun of their universe. Think of me as the one who always get paid, no matter what crap and reality based show they put on television. Yet, that’s all old news.”

“Old news, what do you mean?”

“Now that my communications company is established and set in place, now that I have the money that I need, I’m working on a new project and you, my dear, are my final puzzle piece, my centerpiece, if you will, to help guarantee my project’s success.”

The genius in him was showing and with the sudden change in his facial expression, when talking about his new project, she wondered if he wasn’t a little crazy. Yet, just as what is normal, what is crazy? Besides, what did it matter? She’d be working for one of the greatest men the world has ever known. Ted Turner, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Howard Hughes, even Oprah Winfrey are all a little crazy.

You’d have to be crazy to be so driven or maybe they were the rational ones. Maybe they were the ones who saw how all things worked and how all things should be. Without doubt, knowing all the secrets, whether it was the stock markets, the media, human nature, and/or the human condition, they were the manipulators. They were the marionettes pulling all the strings, while raking in all the money, and the rest of us were just their puppets.

“Tell me more.”

“I can’t,” he said. “All that I can tell you is that they’ll be an upcoming announcement that you’ll make, should you get the job, along with a public unveiling on July 14th, Nude Day, of all days,” he said smiling with what he was about to say next, no doubt.

“Nude Day? Why that particular day?”

“Appropriately, it’s the day that we all must stand naked to embrace whatever or whoever is out there in the vast universe.”

“I see, so now you’re getting into space exploration?”

“Why not? I’ve already conquered the world,” he said almost bragging, “why not continue. Besides, it’s my means to my end. It’s always something that I wanted to do, even as a young boy. Coincidentally,” he said beaming with a broad smile. “The project is named Julia.”

“Julia?” She looked at him and smiled, before taking a nervous sip of her wine. Did he just name it that? She wasn’t sure if he was serious or having a bit of fun with her. “Why that name?”

“You’ll find out soon enough. You’ll just have to trust me with the information for now,” he said. “Yet, don’t be so flattered. Much like the computer Hal, in the 2001 Space Odyssey, I chose the name Julia long before I met you.”

She studied him, as if cramming for an exam. A new project named Julia? She wondered what it was. All this time she thought this interview had been a serendipitous stroke of good luck and now she realized that this interview had been prearranged and was by no accident. With all that he had at his disposal, he had searched for her, she now assumed. Now that he found her, he didn’t have to tell her because it was then that she realized she was hired for the job.

She wished she had read his unauthorized biography, but she didn’t know she was going to meet him in person. She never expected him to conduct the interview. Had she known he’d be here, she would have better prepared her responses.

She knew the worst thing she could do in an interview is to seem disinterested by not asking him questions. She racked her brain for the questions appropriate for such a man. Only, bigger than life, he intimated her and made her nervous. She couldn’t think. She was having trouble focusing on anything but him. She was having a difficult time trying to read him, while trying to think of what to ask him and he was already a dozen moves ahead of her.

Her attention drifted, along with her inability to focus. She couldn’t help but notice his watch. She’d never seen a watch so intricate in detail. It was more than a mere watch. It was beautiful. It was art.

Mesmerized by the splendor of it, she imagined it cost a bundle, more money than she’d earn in a year without doubt. She wondered what it was. She wondered what it cost. Definitely, by the look of it, it was platinum and she was right about that. Only, she’d fall off her chair if she knew that it was a one of a kind, custom created, handmade, Patek Philippe’s Platinum World Time piece that cost a cool 4 million dollars and monitors 24 time zones. Figuring there were only six time zones, she didn’t even know there were 24 time zones to monitor. As her employer, as he mentor, he could teach her so much.

“Interesting,” she said, already in a quandary how to maintain the interest of such a successful and busy man, who could get anyone to work for him, at any time.

Wanting to instantly find the perfect balance to compliment his karma, she didn’t want to come off as being too smart or too dumb. She needed to find a balance. She needed for him to like her. She needed to show him that she was compatible and amenable to whatever he needed her to do, short of having sex with him.

Only, she didn’t know that he had already chosen her. She already had the job and this interview was merely a formality. He only needed to learn the one piece of information that he couldn’t read and that didn’t translate on paper. He needed to know what she was like in person and he needed to meet her for that.

With all the resources available to him, she should have known that he was the one who had reached out and found her, and not, as she had thought, was the other way around. Too naive and too trusting, she had a lot to learn. Only, quick on her feet, she was a quick study and a perfect match for the job.

Conversely, he was the one now being interviewed. Teetering on the fact that she could reject him by his aloofness and his myopic obsessive compulsion to micromanage and control everything, no doubt, he was the one being judged, now, not her. Yet, no one could ever tell that from his calm confidence and self-assured demeanor that, he admitted later, he feared losing her by her rejection. After reading the biography of her presented to him by his security people, it was obvious to him from the information presented to him, before they even met, that they’d make for a good team.

On paper, he found her remarkable. Watching the video taken by his people without her knowledge, he found her exciting. In person, she was everything he had hoped she’d be. And her name was Julia. Unbelievable. Her name was Julia. Call it kismet, call it fate, call it his occasion to celebrate the next chapter of his success, but the stars were aligned for Julia to take the helm on his multi-billion dollar corporation, one day soon.

He was already chomping at the bit to take the next step from fiber optics to what he named as Intuitive Communications. Something the Air Force has been toying with and perfecting in fighter planes, the power of controlling communications and inanimate machinery by human thought, he’d be the first to have it available to the general public, but at such a high price it’d be only for the very rich. Eventually, everyone could afford intuitive communications, but not for another decade, after his patent expired and after it was mass marketed and mass produced.

In the meantime, he’d own the patent rights to it. Only, he needed to be free from Monitor, Inc. The same with his new company. After Intuitive Communications was up and running, Julia, his pet project, is what he really wanted to spend the rest of his days developing. Julia was his destiny, what he was meant to create and do, and his way to connect Earth with the rest of the universe. It had been 62 years since George Orwell wrote his 1984 book in 1948, and now thanks to Monitor, Intuitive Communications, and his new project Julia, 1984 was finally a reality in 2010.

One step at a time, baby steps, instead of giant leaps, he was still Chairman of the Board of Monitor, Inc. He needed someone else to handle the every day-to-day details and time consuming minutia, while he worked on bigger things. Intuitive TV, Intuitive telephone, Intuitive Internet, and Intuitive Worldwide Communications, the name of his newly created corporation, is what he developed now to eventually replace the aging technology of Monitor, Inc. All of this, Monitor, Inc. and now Intuitive Worldwide Communications, was so that he could earn enough revenue to work on his beloved project, Julia.

Although, he was a billionaire many times over, after Monitor, Inc. made him so rich, it was Intuitive Worldwide Communications that would give him the vast reserves of cash that he’d need to explore outer space. The pet project that he so longed to start, but was unable to develop, until he had the money and now he did. Even though, intuitive communications was the next technological in his worldwide communication company, his means to an end, Julia was the one thing that raced his pulse. Julia was his way to not only explore the vast universe but also to communicate with alien beings.

He knew other life forms were out there. They had visited here before. We have documented proof of their numerous visitations. If they had visited here before, hopefully, he can entice them to visit us again. Just as they helped Earthlings then, with their advanced technologies, maybe they could help him now in his quest to create new technology.

Only, what if he was chasing himself, his own ancestors? What if there are no aliens, just Earthlings. What if those who had been here before were Earthlings, humans, returning here from our future to their past? A difficult hypothesis, it’s a concept that took Albert Einstein to theorize and explain.

A thousand years from now, just as we can travel to space, who knows what we will accomplish by then. Maybe the aliens he is looking for aren’t there, yet, because, unless he can travel faster than the speed of light to the future, he’d never see them. Theoretically, if he could travel faster than the speed of light, if he had the technology to go back in time, then he could travel back far enough in time to meet his ancestors. Perhaps, that is what those future visitors did, traveled back in time to help the Egyptians build the pyramids.

Perhaps, they were here trying to change the outcome or fix something that would have adverse consequences in the future or even destroy the future of the planet. Who knows? Yet, he needed to find out and to discover the mysteries of the universe, it would take money, even more money than he had right now. Unfortunately, even more important than money was time.

Julia was in its infancy and he feared not living long enough to see it come to its final conclusion. He already had readied his satellite, his high powered transmission beam, his sensitive receiver antenna, and his state of the art science lab. Of course, he had a support team of scientists and astronomers in place to monitor and analyze any transmissions received, but Julia, still in its infancy, was more than a lifetime project, many lifetimes away.

With the closest star 4 light years away and with the speed of light traveling at only 186,000 miles an hour, well, you do the math. For his beam to reach the stars, even at the speed of light, it would take more than a thousand years. Until he was somehow able to make his beam travel faster than the speed of light he was stuck with old technology looking to the stars for new. He was hoping for quicksilver, a lightning strike, and communicating with an alien space craft that was much closer than the nearest star.

Looking up to the Heavens, instead of looking at all that he’s accomplished in the past on Earth, not taking a rest to enjoy life, he had so much more, yet, to do and so little time left to do it. Julia, literally and figuratively, was his way to do all that he needed, wanted, and yearned to do. He hadn’t amassed his wealth to spend it foolishly on big houses, luxurious yachts, fancy cars, and fast women. Living a modest lifestyle, living life unpretentiously, as if a millionaire, instead of a billionaire, he accumulated his wealth to buy the information he needed to answer all the questions he had.

Much in the way that Jerry Lewis devoted his time, his talent, and his energy to save children by finding a cure to Muscular Dystrophy, Jerick Blankenship, used his power, influence, and money to find those puzzle pieces he needed to know. He still had the same questions that went unanswered by his teachers, when he was a boy. Why are we here and are we alone?

No one could give him the answers that satisfied his curiosity and it was only recently that scientists have come up with plausible answers to the Big Bang theory. Now they believe that space is actually expanding and not shrinking. Further, to travel in space further and faster, they now believe that space is bendable, much like paper and there are inherent shortcuts, wormholes that we can go from one place in space to another, without having to take a longer and less direct route. Finally, by the evidence that has always been there in plain sight, they believe that not only are we not alone but also that we have been visited.

Yet, not to diminish what he had already done and all that he was yet to develop, it was Julia that would put his name in the history books, right next to the famed physicists, Galileo, Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, and Stephen Hawkings. Not a scientist himself, but a creative and insightful businessman, Intuitive Worldwide Communications was something that even George Orwell couldn’t have imagined. Project Julia was his shining star to the future to finally find out what had happened in the past. Instead of looking back to learn what would happen in the future, he looked ahead to discover what happened in the past.

Assuredly intuitive communication was the next step, the future, in telecommunications and he’d own it. His competition would have to ask his permission for him to license them and for them to access what he developed. He’d be the new Ma Bell with every communication device manufactured by all companies worldwide, from cell phones to television transmissions to the Internet, flowing through him.

The hub of the telecommunications universe, that is, until his patent rights expired in seven years, they’d all be at his whimsy and mercy. A giant step ahead of the competition, by then, he’d be off doing something else, inventing something new, and developing the future with Project Julia. If it didn’t make him look so crazy, he’d stand on the table and laugh with glee. The giants of the communication industry all wished they were him, do doubt.

She had never met a billionaire before and JB was one of the richest of the rich. For him to take more than a passing interest in her, for him to take the time to interview her was something she never thought would happen. To be honest, even if she got the job, she never thought she’d meet him. She figured he’d be too insulated and too busy to take the time to meet her. Now, admittedly, if hired, she discerned that they’d have a close working, as well as, an intimate personal relationship, but she figured he’d have sent one of his flunkies to conduct her interview and then report back to him.

Decidedly easier for her to win his approval by having him conduct the interview personally, she was glad that she wouldn’t have to prolong the interviewing process by winning over an intermediary, first. Even though she was pressured now to win his approval, she wouldn’t have the stress of wondering if she’d get a chance at a second interview with him later; that interview was happening now. Without doubt, it was decidedly more nerve wracking for her to sit before the supreme judge, the one making the decision, the great Jerick Blankenship, of whether or not she was right for the job. Yet, if that’s what it takes to work for the man, then she was up for the challenge.

It would have been much worse, had she had the first interview with a subordinate of his company, while waiting for the phone to ring telling her she won a second interview with him. Now, she just has to wait to hear if she got the job, even though she was sure she had. Nonetheless, she was glad for a face to face chance to sell herself, while knowing that, when she left here, she’d, no doubt, know if he liked her on not. Maybe, before leaving the restaurant, she’d even know if she got the job or not.

She was surprised, when he entered the restaurant with his entourage of personal secretaries, aids, and security force, wired and packing as much heat as the secret service. Immediately, she recognized him, in his ten thousand dollar, no doubt, handmade blue, silk suit, as if there was a spotlight on him. Too nervous to notice, she hadn’t realized the restaurant had been hired for the night and closed off to the public.

Certainly, if working for him, that would have to change. She’d have to have eyes behind her head. Just like him with having an inherent element of surprise, she’d have to work on never being flustered. Never allowing anyone to see her coming, she’d have to be two steps ahead of everyone else with her next chess move.

Except for his staff and the few restaurant personnel, they sat alone. She watched as his small army of people descended upon the restaurant and did their job inconspicuously, while staying in the background and doting on him without interrupting his private conversation and ruining his train of thought. Well orchestrated with everyone trained to do their job, they disappeared in the background, as if they were invisible.

Curious, as to know how his employer/employee interrelationships worked, she watched how his people treated him, treated one another, and more importantly, how he treated them. If given the job, she’d be in charge of all these people, no doubt. She’d be his right arm person, his executive, personal and private assistant. Privy to everything, she’d know him, as well as he knows himself.

“A critical moment and my defining time, it all started percolating, when I was a young boy and read, what was to be, my favorite book, 1984, by George Orwell,” he said appearing, as if he had related this story many times before. Only, in fact, she’d be surprised to learn later, that he had never told anyone this revealing bit of personal information, but her. “Feeling as if the writer was writing about me and writing my story, I loved the main character, Winston Smith. That book formulated my destiny. I imagined that I was him then,” he said.

“Yes, that was a great book,” she said fluffing off what he told her and not realizing what he said was the foundation for Project Julia. “I remember reading Animal Farm, by him, also,” she said remembering the premise of the book, but not really remembering if she read 1984 or not.

For someone so smart, so educated, and so logical, she should have known what she was getting into, when JB confessed to her, while sharing his thoughts over lunch, that his favorite book was George Orwell’s 1984 and confided in her that his favorite character was Winston Smith. Only, as does everyone else, who meets Julia, someone so alluringly beautiful, even though she has a master’s degree from Harvard in business, they underestimate her. Surely, someone so beautiful in face and body, cannot have the intelligence to match. No one has the whole package, do they?

She must have a weak link something. Surely, there’s something wrong with her. She must be limited somewhere, flawed someway, and failing somehow. How can anyone so gifted, be so perfect? Yet, she was. Only, JB didn’t underestimate her.

The fact that others would underestimate her was one of the traits that he loved about her. For sure, they’d never see her coming. A shining star before them, they’d be too blinded by her bright light, her physical beauty, to consider her sharp mind.

“Did you know that Julia was the name of Winston Smith’s love interest?”

He looked at her with unblinking eyes, while reaching for his wine glass. Never taking his eyes off of her, he lifted the glass to his lips and took a slow sip of wine, as if taking a slow sip of her.

She knew the wine was expensive. Only, it would be too rude to ask the price. Yet, never having had a glass of wine, such as the one she was having now, if someone was to ask her if she wanted to finish the bottle of this fine wine or have hot sex with a handsome and generous lover, she’d chose the wine. With all the aged fruity flavors exploding in her mouth, fighting the desire to chew it, the wine went down like a full course meal, before going straight to her head.

“No, I didn’t know that,” she said suddenly feeling uncomfortable by his leering stare and feeling, as if she was playing a part and was a character in the modern day movie that they were making for television of 1984, aptly named 2010. She half expected the director to yell, “Cut.”

Was he hitting on her? Was this more about her outside appearance than it was about her abilities and about the job that she could do for him? It was then that she wished she wasn’t so beautiful. Her looks interfered with her getting work, as much as it did helping her to get the interview. Why else would he make the connection and mention that his favorite character, a character he felt the writer wrote about him, had a love interest named Julia, if he wasn’t hitting on her?

September 2018
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