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This morning I did some light grocery shopping at the Safeway by our house – the same Safeway we’ve shopped at 2-3 times every week for the past 8 years. Everything seemed pretty normal… till I went to check out. I picked Samantha’s line because she is our favorite checker. I got all the way to the front and started entering my Safeway club card number before I realized it. Samantha was 8 inches taller than she was 3 days ago.

I leaned over the mini conveyor belt to see what she was standing on. There was nothing under her feet but a rubberized mat to counteract the damage done by standing on a concrete floor 8 hours a day. I was about to ask her how a 50 year old woman had grown so quickly. But, when I looked into her face, I suddenly became very confused: those lips look collagen filled; that mole is on the wrong side of the face; her voice is… different.

I didn’t understand. I mean, that was Samantha. She’s hard to miss – it’s as if she walked out of a Motley Crue show at the Troubadour 25 years ago and stepped directly behind the cash register at Safeway. She has a vine tattooed around her upper arm. She is painfully thin. Her hair is 14 different shades of “blonde” and halfway ratted out for a Saturday night in Lynnwood. This is not a grocery store clerk you easily forget – or mistake for someone else.

I thought to myself – could it be? Is it possible that the Safeway management had hired not one super friendly, aging blond hessian with a penchant for blue eyeshadow, but had decided to also hire her twin sister of amazonian height?

But, then… I saw her name tag… and, it read: Samantha!

How could this be? What was happening?!? It was her but it wasn’t her! I mean, she was Samantha, but not the version of Samantha I am used to.

And then it hit me: alternate universe. It’s the only possibility. I must have stepped out of my minivan on Earth Prime and walked through the automatic sliding doors to Earth 2. It just makes sense. Everything is the same, yet just a little bit different. My mind started racing – how else had the reality I’d known been altered here? In this universe, did my wife still love me? Had W taken permanent hold of the executive branch? Were all women 8 inches taller? Was Lex Luthor a good guy?

Simply put, I’ve decided to see the glass as half full and grab this opportunity by the proverbial horns. So, in this universe, I eat 100% of the suggested daily intake of bran every day, exercise 5 times a week, and take my vitamins.

That was easy.

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