It is the year 2080 and Kevin Finkbinder leads a fairly peaceful life. He teaches Middle School Social Studies, is single, and has a fairly boring existence. Kevin isn't the most knowledgeable person when it comes to computers and has been having trouble with his house lately because it is all computerized. He can turn everything on and off by voice command and there are many robots scurrying around. The robots keep the house clean, cook his meals, wash his clothes, and even do his personal banking.
Kevin heard a loud clicking sound as he put his key card in the front door. He always came home to his dog Sparky a Schnauzer, who was mean to everyone including the robots, except Kevin. As the door slid open, Sparky came running up to Kevin, jumped in his arms, and started slobbering all over his face. He figured it was about time for Sparky's walk. He got the leash but realized today's walk would have to wait as he heard, on the radio, that a thunderstorm was heading their way. Kevin stopped walking toward the door and Sparky growled. He bent over to take Sparky's leash off and heard the first crash of thunder. It sounded pretty close and Sparky took off running.
One of the robots stopped Sparky, as it rolled toward Kevin. The robot looked like a toaster with wheels. There was a little message printing out of the robots top. The message read: The surge protectors are not prepared for the storm.
"I'd better go fix them then," said Kevin, talking to himself.
Another message started printing out of the robot: It is not safe to repair the surge protector system during the storm. Then, the main computer system locked off the door to the electrical control room that the surge protector system was in.
"What's a surge protector?" thought Kevin, "I might as well watch TV."
Kevin picked up the video TV Guide to see what was on tonight. He was disappointed because there were only old movies on like Titanic and Speed 2. There was nothing that caught his attention so he got on the Internet and not knowing how to use the Internet, he bought 3 new long-distance phone plans and 1 new credit card. He got off the computer and went back to the TV and started to channel surf.
CRASH!!! There was another really loud clap of thunder. Then, the skies lit up as lightening followed.
BZZZZTT!!! Kevin looked toward the electrical control room. There was light coming out from under the door. He looked at his Computerized Houses for Dummies Manual. He looked up the subject - If Lightening Strikes. It said, your surge protector should take care of lightening strikes. If surge protectors are out, see Volume 2, Computerized Houses for Dummies Manual, $34.95 plus shipping and handling.
Kevin looks down and notices that sparks are flying from the robots as they run in circles. Sparky is hiding under the couch, barking at the robots. Kevin can smell the sparks coming from the robot. All he can think is PANIC, PANIC, PANIC! The white walls of the house turn black wherever the sparks hit. From Kevin's eyes, this looks like a danger zone.
The storm outside isn't getting any better. It seems like it's hovering right on top of the house. All of the wind and rain hitting the roof, adds to the craziness.
Sparky runs out from under the couch and starts attacking the robot that looks like a toaster but soon backs off because of the sparks.
Kevin can think of nothing but the house going up in flames as he runs from all of the robots. Kevin's brain starts throbbing from all of the noise.
"I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE!" screams Kevin. "AHHHH!" Kevin springs up in bed like a catapult, his normal Beauty Rest 1998 bed . With a sigh of relief, he drifts back to sleep.
The year is 1849. The gold rush is strong. With gold on his mind Kevin Finkbinder heads west...........
School: Erskine Elementary
City: Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA
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