The New GenerationThe exact date that it happened is irrelevant. Not to say that people don’t know it, on the contrary. Nowadays people seem to have a thing for dates, names, events. That of course is what started this whole fiasco. It was the businessmen who first took advantage of it. Day traders and finance buffs pushed scientist to get the early betas of it so that they could spend their sleeping hours studying stock tickers, merger info, and corporate gossip. They didn’t mind. Their dreams were of money. Selling their time to dream only fullfilled their desires. The graduate students came next. Once students realized that they could hijack their REM sleep, not that they ever valued sleep anyway, it all changed. It allowed the mental projection of themselves to read wikipedia or their textbooks instead of flying over crevices and sparkling waterfalls. Grades (and curves) went up. Suddenly sleep jacking, or “slacking” as it was now dubbed, became almost a requirement. There were a few who didn’t do it. The religious, the stubborn, etc. It’s funny how religious doctrine changes when success is on the line. It took a decade for it to spread into every aspect of culture. Even the cleaning ladies were doing it after that though. Technology advanced. The dream world slowly became more “real” than the real world. Man evolved. In a world of slackers, the fittest were the laziest. The most adept were those who could sleep longest. Markets for sleep aids skyrocketed. Beds softer than a pedophile in a geriatric convention. Enough drugs to give Curt Cobain a wet dream. Switches along your optical nerve, those were the biggest sell. They’d turn you into Ray Charles and back again before you could sing a verse of “Aint That Fine”. Intelligence skyrocketed, but with no real-world experiences left to be had, wisdom stayed behind. “Early to bed, never to rise, makes a man very wealthy – screw being wise” became the motto of the new generation.
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