Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Upgrade

“Weirdest thing,” said Al Donner as he handed his wife a coffee cup.

“What’s that?”

He sat across from Janine at the dining room table. “I was looking out the kitchen window just now and saw a car drive by that was exactly the same make, model and color as mine. And the guy driving…looked like me.”

“Oh lord, please don’t let there be another Al Donner in the world,” she said with a smile. “Just kidding.”

“Ha. Strange, that’s all.” He got up and kissed Janine on her forehead. “Late for work.”

At a stoplight on his way to the office, Al wondered if he had time to grab a latte at the coffee shop just across the street. His gaze came to a rest on the front door of Peet’s, and a man who looked alarmingly like him came walking out of the shop holding a to-go coffee cup. He was even wearing the same color shirt. Car horns from behind broke his trance and he shook his head in disbelief at the strange events of the morning. Did he actually have a doppelganger?

The oddities continued as he sat at his computer in his cube trying to log in. His password wasn’t working. Frustrated, he looked up and saw his boss Tom Rhodes walking toward him with an uncharacteristically serious expression. The man leaned over the cube wall and spoke quietly.

“Al, can I see you in my office?”

As Al took a chair, Tom sat on the edge of his desk.

“It’s time,” said Don, with an apologetic tone.



“Time for what?”

“Let’s not make this any more difficult than it has to be.”

“Don, I don’t have any idea what you’re talking about. Are you firing me?”


Al reacted as if he was hearing a foreign language. “Then what the hell are you talking about?”

“I’ve heard of this happening, but never…. Look, Al, just report to IT. Okay? They’ll explain everything.”

“IT? I don’t—“

“Al, please.”

“Fine,” said Al, standing. “Maybe someone there will tell me what the hell is going on.”

Confused and red-faced, Al l walked out of the office and headed in the direction of IT. A few moments later, he seemed to reappear in the doorway of the office.

“Mr. Rhodes? I’m Al Donner.”

Tom got up and extended his hand. “Call me Tom. Glad to have you on board, Al.”

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