An alternative GeekRetreat story
It is a hot, swampy night just minutes before midnight on the outskirts of the small village of Stanford. An eagle howls. The cicadas ring in the ears of a huddle of beasts in the palm of the valley. A small flashlight is bobbing at the top of the hill. Soon other lights follow it as more emerge over the hill. Their bearers come into view. They are dressed in long black and silver cloaks and seem to float across the drought-stricken ground. Behind them are others dressed in deep red cloaks that seem to be dipped in blood. The GeekRetreat Elders have arrived to initiate new retreaters.
The Elders enter what looks like an old stone farmhouse. The wide room is lit by a circle of candles on the stone floor behind which sits the uninitiated geeks, dressed only in swaths of white cloth and their skin painted with white paint. Geoff the Greek is sweating profusely despite the heat. The cloth is prickling him and he is visibly nervous. He has left his CEO mantle behind him. Everyone starts at the lowest rung here. He is reminded of the time that he was the last person picked in break-time cricket in primary school. Will his geek skills be up to scratch? It was a long time since he wrote html. These days he hands his if-when-statement-writing over to his tribes code-monkeys scattered across the Web like pellets of the lonely male springbok.
The GeekRetreat Elders are staring down at the Newbies. A particularly dark looking character is grinning at him and staring into his stricken face. He has the word ‘Naughty’ tattooed across his forehead.
The elders enter the room and shout abuse at the Newbies. They make them do a series of tasks:
1. do their multiplication tables in binary while drinking a sickly brown substance with a snake emblazoned on it
2. doing pc support for grannies wanting to get onto the internets
3. reciting the words of the Tron
Geoff was doing ok. He’d been rehearsing his whole life for this. But Naughty was still grinning at him and when there was silence again, he opened his mouth for the first time:
What is the Wikileaks password? he asked.
Others put up their hands but Naughty waved them away.
I want him to tell me.
Geoff was being tested. For the future task of chief Greek? He didn’t know. All he knew was that he needed to get this right. The sweat dripped from his forehead and he stammered:
There is… no password.
The room errupted. Their new leader had been found. He was shown to have the powers of the Internets behind him. The covenant had been sealed.
Naughty’s grin disappeared and Geoff the Greek Geek hoorayed.