Monday, October 16, 2017
Fiction #75: Finn Harvor
Author's statement: This story ("Last Question of the Evening") speaks, I hope, for itself. It is set in a call center during an election when a conservative party is in power … and wants to keep things that way. However, the story also exists as a movie and is part of a larger project entitled PLASTIC MILLENNIUM. Links to the movie version of this story are below. I'm hoping people will check out the movie as well as the story.
Vimeo links (two parts)
https://vimeo.com/126326733 (pw: lastone)
https://vimeo.com/126785622 (pw: lastone)
Whole story here: http://thedanforthreview.blogspot.com/2017/10/fiction-75-finn-harvor.html
Last Question of the Evening
An office comprised of cubicles, all of them lined in rows, as if the aisles of an airplane had been converted into office space. In each cubicle, a worker with a headset.
"They're all liars," a voice through one headset says.
The man conducting the interview, Anders, doesn't reply. He waits for the respondent to answer the question in the survey.
"Eh?" the respondent says, his voice charged with a coercive energy. "Whaddayou think?"
"A lot of people feel the same way you do, sir."
"That's right!" the man from rural Saskatchewan says. "They all go to Ottawa, they promise you the world, and then they do nothing."
Pause. Anders glances at the supervisors' station, eager to see if his call is being monitored. He can't make out the supervisors' screens.
"Sir, if you could please answer the questions as they're phrased, we'd get through this much faster."
Saying this is a mistake; not because the respondent is offended by Anders's chastisement, but because it suddenly makes him aware of how long he's been on the phone. "Good lord, mister! Lookit the time! We've been yammerin' for half an hour!"
"We're almost done," Anders lies.
"I can't be talkin' about all this sort of political nonsense for half an hour!"