Message from a Scraling


This place is a message… and part of a system of messages… pay attention to it!
Sending this message was important to us. We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture.
This place is not a place of honor…no highly esteemed deed is commemorated here… nothing valued is here.
What is here is dangerous and repulsive to us. This message is a warning about danger.
The danger is in a particular location… it increases toward a center… the center of danger is here… of a particular size and shape, and below us.
The danger is still present, in your time, as it was in ours.
The danger is to the body, and it can kill.
The form of the danger is an emanation of energy.
The danger is unleashed only if you substantially disturb this place physically. This place is best shunned and left uninhabited.

This is a message being conveyed at Yucca Mountain, one of the biggest sites of nuclear waste. This message has to be created in a form which humans or other life forms 10 000 years into the future will understand, irregardless of how advanced or primitive (hate that word). (wrap your brain around that one!) If that’s not scary enough, listen to this. The Shoshone, who have been contesting the nuclear waste site, have a legend that “tell[s] of Yucca Mountain (known as Snake Mountain) and how the snake would rise up as a horrific serpent if it were ever harmed.” It’s also the site of Shoshone and Paite prayer rings, burial grounds, and sacred waterways. Of course. I mean, talk about the set up for a gory horror movie starring a zombie Graham Greene on a horse.

“This land was sacred to my people since time immemorial, and now I want to EAT YOUR BRAINS!!!!”

Currently the plan is to architecturally construct the site in a very forboding manner, involving large thorny concrete spikes, large black looming rocks, and a sort of unmanned interpretive centre in all UN languages and Navajo (apparently the Shoshone and Paite will be gone by then).

If you think that’s awful, consider this fact. Mount Rushmore, with those looming white man faces, is considered a sacred site by the Lakota. And it was good for their ar-thur-itis too. Actually, I just made that last part up.

But if you want to know something really trippy, Vikings called us scralings. Scralings, isn’t that hilarious? It’s like something out of Lord of the Rings or a really bad text video game.

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