All these worlds are yours except Earth

Amid all the mystery and worry surrounding the recent, ongoing disappearance of large numbers of honeybees, I have not heard any mention of the 1983 film WarGames. Remember? Stephen Falken, the retired computer genius who’s strangely sanguine in the face of nuclear annihilation, tells Matthew Broderick and Ally Sheedy,

Once upon a time, there lived a magnificent race of animals that dominated the world through age after age. They ran, they swam, and they fought and they flew, until suddenly, quite recently, they disappeared. Nature just gave up and started again. We weren’t even apes then. We were just these smart little rodents hiding in the rocks. And when we go, nature will start over. With the bees, probably.

The bees are not dead. They are hiding. (Possibly in my chimney.) They are organizing. They are flexing their tiny but oh-so-busy bee muscles. This is a little show of power they’re putting on to demonstrate how dependent we are on them. If we disappeared tomorrow, what would they care? But if they disappear, we’re screwed, and they want us to know it. Who’s in charge of whom?

I, for one, welcome our new insect overlords.

Leave a Reply