In needing Nothing, we became Nothing.

5 min readSep 21, 2020


The clock goes tick, the clock goes tock, and the day went by. Just like yesterday, the day before yesterday and the last hundred of yesterdays.

It’s again one of those days in which everything feels a little off, for now he remembers everything. Again.

What have I done?

It’s just like putting on t-shirt a size too small. Only now, it’s not the fabric of his clothes that’s uncomfortable, but his own skin, clutching and hawing against his muscles. Like he doesn’t belong inside his body anymore. Something inside him knows it and wants to restore nature’s course.

He rests his head against the window, the cold glass warming under his tired forehead, his breath leaving wet marks on the pane. The outside world is so…no.

Nothing exciting unveils behind the dirty glass anymore. One square meter of still nature, it was all his eyes could see.

Each day, the same still picture, each night, the same patch of darkness.

Back in the old days, he could see his peers strolling aimlessly, old people walking their dogs, children being unnecessarily loud or middle aged couple strutting the sidewalk.

He could hear the buzz of spring, the birds in the morning, the cheap music from the small pub and its patrons arguing over last nights’s game. He could hear the cars and the laughter, even the odd cuss, every now and then.

But now…outside the dirty glass, his eyes can barely make something of the the old car, abandoned and forgotten, rust creeping through its side doors. He could almost make the outline of the same buildings covered in profanity and the patch of green grass, fighting it’s way through the cold concrete.

All that was left unfolding outside his eyes, was a decaying still-nature portrait. And all he could hear was penetrating, unforgiving, unnerving silence.

Dystopia is now.

Photo by Kukuh Himawan Samudro on Unsplash

The thought from the night before, the last he could remember before taking another pill and falling into a dreamless sleep, still lingered in the lost corners of his mind.

His inquisitive mind entertained the thought one too many times.

Back when the outside was still alive and the pubs were buzzing with life and lust, he argued about a time when tech would be so advanced, so omnipresent, one wouldn’t even need to leave the house — everything is there, at a click away for your convenience.

During those nights, he’d naively argue how this would actually be a good thing, the ultimate conquest, just watch me!

We would be so advanced, we could forever shed the remains of the early days. When we had to hunt for our food and build shelters in cold caves, nothing separating us from the animal we just dined upon.

In the name of progress!, he’d shout, slumbered and dizzy, the sweetness from too many beers still fresh on his tongue.

And yes, poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we’ll stay alive for, he’d quote Prof. Keating, we will be free to create, to enlighten, to conquer and live, live, LIVE! freed from the unworthy troubles of the mundane yes, we will accomplish so, so much…

Struggling to maintain eye contact with the waitress, buying another round, celebratory drinks, drunk and intoxicated by his own intelligence and the beauty of his mind, the adrenaline rushing inside him from the evrika!-moment, yes, we will be so-so beautifully free and so alive!

And the nights became hungover mornings and his mind was always working, but he’d carry out his research more impatient, more determined.

His state-of-the-art computer would be his lyre while he’d relentlessly sing the myth of humans finally winning the battle against our last weaknesses.

He eventually cracked the code and found a way to convince people they don’t need to leave their dens anymore, they don’t need to see their friends, hug their families, fuck and climax with the hot specimen they’ve just met.

Not anymore.

It’s all there, somewhere between 1’s and 0’s he found the perfect algorithm for love and for closeness, for the rush of endorphins drugging our brains.

And piles and piles of research gathered in his room, months turned into years, until he finally found the golden ratio, a sound wave that can be distributed in radio shows yes, yes, they’ll finally see it as I do.

Photo by Isaac Davis on Unsplash

And the people listened. And the people stayed in. And the people used his algorithm every time they felt lonely, sad, anxious or confused.

Life can be fucked up and we can suffer and agonize, but it doesn’t have to feel this way! Use this App and free your flesh from all that is weak and be free to live, wipe your slate clean for only $9.99 the ads would say.

1M downloads in just a week, it’s a huge success, he’d think, now drinking alone in celebration for his fellow scientists were busy logging in and discharging the envy out of their bodies.

Replacing heartbeats with the metronome of the perfect sound wave, humans slowly decayed.

Humanity is now reduced to bits and pieces, shards from everything they once were, seeking solace and solitude alike in an app that was never meat to be.

Addicted to his algorithm, they stopped. Stopped feeling thirst and hunger, pain and joy, desperation and euphoria.

They stopped needing. Aything.

And with needing nothing, they became nothing, only carcasses of skin and bone, gastric juice, blood and feces waiting to be expelled from the body. Only to start again from scratch, every minute of everyday until each and every last heart would stop beating.

The beautiful, amazing, extraordinary human that was once able to cry salty tears when a loved one will leave, burn with hot rage at some injustice, hate eachother to the point of murder, or love one another ferociously, was long gone.

Replaced with a lifeless grub, gestating and not caring about the beautiful, random, weird, unjust, ugly moments that made life worth living and loving.

Photo by Hermes Rivera on Unsplash

What have I done? he’s asking himself contemplating the vast nothingness outside his window.

He dreams of the Utopian society he hoped to create, looking at the dying corpse of his world.

For he is now also lost. Forgotten. And he reeks of both of them, loneliness and disconnection dripping from his armpits. Ravaged by the failure of his own desperation .

Dystopia is now, he thinks again, popping another pill, logging into the app, waiting for the dreamless 12 hours shutdown he now calls sleep.

Only now, tonight, another idea is creeping in, fighting the algorithm, somehow gaining enough power to send the signal of the last hopeful thought between the 1's and the 0's:

“I hope I won’t wake up tomorrow.”