There was no ship and no landing.
The ET just coalesced as a shining stick figure in the living room of James Smyth III, the chairman of the International Association of Art Museums. It was late in the evening, and Smyth was alone.
The chairman registered no shock. The ET said, “I chose you as my initial contact, because you have connections in politics and media.”
“I might be able to sponsor a conference.”
“I want private talks.”
“Oh. Yes. Of course.”
Then this interchange occurred:
You know, Mr. Smyth, the most significant subject I could broach is Reality.
I’ve often thought about it while walking the lonely halls of an empty museum late at night—
Reality is elastic. But in order to see that, a person has to deploy his imagination. Otherwise, Reality can appear to be a block of steel.
You know, I’ve seen and talked with very famous celebrities. Some of them seem to have a glow around them. Is there a way to change my DNA so I can emit that glow?
Mr. Smyth, if Reality had a plan, it would be to stay where it is and say it can’t change. Reality is a form of propaganda. The deeper you drill into the propaganda, the more you realize the very basics—for instance, space and time—are provisional.
One of our former presidents, Bill Clinton, was very interested in UFOs. I know Bill. I might be able to arrange an event at one of the museums here in New York. The publicity would be enormous. I could introduce you; make a short speech. It would be a charity fundraiser.
Some of the most convincing and oppressive Realities, Mr. Smyth, are built on nothing. That’s what you find at the bottom of your search, if you go deep enough. When you expose this, people have a chance to wake up. The hypnotic trance they’re in tends to dissipate.
I visit my barber every week. I have a standing appointment. My tailor has made several different kinds of British suits for me. But something in my persona is lacking. Are there any tricks you could teach me? I want to convey a sense of…I want people to come to attention when I enter a room.
Humans specialize in Reality-addiction. They’re convinced that what they see and feel is all there is. The One Reality. But there are a potentially unlimited number of Realities that can be invented. The individual invents them.
I once contemplated a run for a seat in the Senate. I had financial backers. But in the end, our team decided I just didn’t have the name recognition. We had Jimmy Carter come in and talk with us. He said he didn’t think I was a good fit for politics. It would have been quite a different career path than the one I finally chose. I think my family was disappointed. Our daughter had taken a tour of the White House as a child, and she was in love with the idea of actually living there…
Some of the biggest discoveries a person makes come from imagining how Reality could be, contrasted against how it is. Seeing both, side by side…then perception and thought change.
Sixty years ago, the Metropolitan Museum bought a minor Rembrandt. It never drew the crowds the Board expected. Now the most important donors want to sell it. They’ve asked for my opinion. Rather than write a report, I’m going to make a video presentation. I’m trying to decide whether to bring the film crew here to the house, or speak against the background of the River and the majestic skyline of the city.
Inventing new Realities causes radically positive changes in chemical processes of cells of the body, hormonal levels, and other less-noticed energies. We saw this happen with Rodin.
On the second floor of the Metropolitan, we have a lovely Rodin. I wanted to move it down to the lobby, but I was outvoted. Basically, the Council was launching a little power play against me.
At a deep level, most humans are programmed with crude concepts of symmetry, balance, harmonization, and organization. They automatically reject anything outside those parameters as dissonance and noise. They ignore whole universes.
My good friend Melania Trump came to me with a proposal to launch a traveling exhibition of the history of Western fashion. I thought it was a bold notion. But the political atmosphere was poisonous. We just couldn’t raise interest. The New York papers went after me hammer and tongs. One reporter called me “a fascist in sheep’s clothing.” Can you believe it? We were just talking about hats. Hats and dresses. And suddenly I was Mussolini.
In Tibet, fifteen centuries ago, before the priest-class moved in with their metaphysical baggage and set up a theocracy, adepts lived up in the cold mountains and practiced exercises designed to make them see, once and for all, that universe was a product of mind. From that point on, an individual could alter space and time. He could make a forest disappear and reappear.
I hate to cut this short, but I have to take a call from Japan. We’re bringing over several Hokusai drawings next month. The minister of culture is an old friend of mine. His son and my daughter went to Princeton together. But anytime you’d like to come back—
—The extraterrestrial made a slight motion and changed Mr. Smyth into a large pig.
The pig wandered around the room sniffing the furniture.
The pig said, “I forgot to mention that one of President Biden’s advisors on foreign policy is a former member of the Museum Association. She has a summer cottage just outside Brattleboro. Perhaps I could make arrangements for you two to sit down and have a chat. Many years ago, when she came to work for us, I mentored her on fundraising and prestige. Donors want be connected to their gifts in a variety of public ways.”
The extraterrestrial dropped an ear of corn on the floor and vanished.
Several months later, after appearances on Face the Nation, Meet the Press, and the PBS News Hour, the pig announced he was running for a seat in the US Senate. His opening poll numbers were through the roof.
However, since he was on the ticket as a Republican, New York Democrat party leaders were alarmed. Kamala Harris flew up from Washington and huddled with PR pros at the Rockefeller Institute.
Two days later, Anthony Fauci retired from public life, and President Biden offered the pig the vacant position of White House chief coronavirus advisor.
Pledging to serve the nation in a time of crisis, the pig accepted. He told reporters, “I follow the science, just as my good friend Dr. Fauci did. The vaccine is remarkably safe and effective. It’s the only way out of the lockdowns and the trough of government bailouts. It’s how we get to herd immunity and the blue sky of freedom again.”