Die Writing

Dystopian trains

Posted in Uncategorized by erdaron on May 5, 2010


Is there such a thing as complete and pure fiction? The best liars know that there isn’t.

Go on

I-10 stretches across an incomprehensible amount of the desert. It’s so vast it’s measured not in miles. It’s measured in days, or gas stations, or cups of Mountain Dew. Incidentally, it also runs along a railroad. Most of what moves along the railroad is not passengers, but rather cargo. Stuff in giant metal crates.

The entire thing is surreal. The trains move only slightly slower than highway traffic, so if you’re going in the same direction, you can be driving along the train for several minutes. It seems like hours, but it’s probably just minutes. It seems this long because trains are hypnotic. It’s an endless, moving wall of rusted iron. There is something very Mad Max, very dystopian about it. Most of the time you can’t see the locomotive. You can only see the apparently endless line of train cars that might simply disappear into a mirage at either end. It’s like a dragon, like something primeval.

From the driver’s perspective, it’s just a slow-moving wall of metal. Its sight is so bizarre, it might as well be a mirage itself. Something you’ve dreamed up because you’ve been on the road for so long, things are only sort of real now.

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