Evolution of a Madman

Here we have: The Madman. Fascinating specimen. And this is his natural habitat: the “office.” Each office consists of smaller office nodes coating the inner walls. These are populated by the boss drones. Sitting between these office nodes, in the core of the larger office, are what the drones call “cubicles”—smaller, less structurally secure nodes meant for lesser worker drones.

Our madman begins his transformative cycle as a lesser worker drone. We can observe the mounting stress on the drone’s psyche. Watch how his boss drone delivers the worker drone a poor performance review. Look there—do you see the subtle shift in the worker’s behaviour? He is crossing his arms, lowering his chin, furrowing his brow—almost as though he is tightening, reverting inward and protecting his core. This is the first phase of the madman’s chrysalis period, where he advances from the worker drone state to the madman state.

The second phase we call the “kicked while down” phase. As the worker drone exits the greater office to return to his dwelling, he enters into his bipedal, gas-expending shell, and hurries to escape. Many worker drones are satisfied with their lot in life. The madman is a unique species. He rushes to his dwelling, rejecting the basic evolutionary and social imperative of drone work, in favour of non-essential behaviours, including consuming far more calories than necessary for survival, or spending hours in a dormant state in front of a glowing square. However, in his rush to return to his dwelling, he is pursued by an overseer drone and scolded for his antisocial behaviour. Once the overseer drone returns to her bipedal form and leaves, the worker drone carries on home, now more slowly. As he sheds his bipedal shell, we can observe that he is even more visibly changed—aggressive movements, veins appearing on the subject’s forehead, etc.

Ever a fascinating ritual, the next phase of the madman transformation is contemplation of, even preparation for, self-destruction. Outside our specimen’s dwelling is a tree whereupon he fastens a rope with a loop at the end. We can see the contemplation of his next course of action as he tugs absently on the rope loop. Occasionally, the drones self-terminate, and do not fully transition to the madman phase, but as this is the most basic level of anti-evolutionary practice, drones rarely follow through.

It looks as though our transition phase does not end here! The worker drone is returning the rope to his dwelling. We can skip ahead a little for the next true phase (often the previous three phases repeat several times before the transition).

Our lesser worker drone has acquired a standard overseer defense mechanism! It is always an interesting flaw in the social structure that these clear dangers to the greater population are able to attain such tools.

The final phase occurs in the “office.” Our worker drone, now fully deviant from the standard social evolution, makes use of his defense mechanism to kill the boss drone who gave him the poor review. Several overseer drones rush to the office to subdue the deviant madman drone. Situations like these vary, but ultimately the overseers always succeed in removing the madman drone from the gene pool. And yet, despite the culling of these rare specimens, more always surface over time. This suggests that the capacity for drone madness is not strictly a passed-down trait, but rather standard drones possess the possibility to divert from social evolution patterns.

It’s all very fascinating, as I’m sure you’d agree. Too bad for the boss drone, though.

Day 182 and 183’s six prompt categories were, “Work will set you free,” “A bad review,” “An anthropological study,” “The hanging tree,” “Gun kata,” and, “Pulled over by the cops.”

Yes, another double-prompt. The reason being, this time, was because I moved into a new place, and internet is not a thing there yet. It’s so bizarre being somewhere without internet. Which is a sad thought.

– H.

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