I caught a matinee screening of Blade Runner 2049 with some friends yesterday. Think of it as shelter from the rain. Water collected on my sweatshirt and in my beard as I crossed the parking lot. “The world needs your dreamy energy,” announced a commercial for Dropbox. Sitting through the trailers beforehand, I thought to myself, “Ready Player One‘s brand of retro panders to the lowest common denominator.” Everywhere I looked, I kept seeing eclipsed light shining through cracks in reality. And then the film itself: monstrous urban futures. Midway through, Jared Leto’s mad scientist character turns to his assistant and proclaims, “We can storm Eden and reclaim it!” If those words had been spoken by the replicants themselves, assembled now as an army, I’d say, “Right on, right on. Power to the people.” Because as another character notes later in the film, “Dying for the right cause is the most human thing you can do.” Rhythm makes me ask, “Is time progressing or am I stuck in a rut?” I remind myself of a friend’s advice: belief is mine to dole out as I please. Smuggle into the anthill ants whose disposition toward the hill is basically, “House is on fire and I don’t give a fuck.” As a philosophy minor, I was taught to disregard emotional reads of situations or knowledges derived via gut check. Has that teaching unfolded into a liability in the years that have passed since college? What would it mean to be able to rouse oneself from a lifetime of slumber? White-knuckle it for a bit. Peter out after a prolonged decline. Or, the alternative: push through the curtain in search of some half-glimpsed secret order.