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Clearly doing something new here, mucking around with page layouts while standing up other portions of the site and making these PDFs legible on a desktop. I have no problem with anyone seeing the dust, but please pardon it.

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I hold a couple of crackpot theories close to my heart but very loose in my hands and in my mind. Put another way: it amuses me to think about the following as though they are true, while acknowledging that zero evidence exists to confirm their fact. The first is that deja vu is reality correcting itself after a catastrophic accident, such that the "save point" is a few moments, minutes, hours, or days (I've had a sense of deja vu lasting days; you can want it if you want) before the schism. Sarah Connor -- of Terminator fame -- tells us "[T]hree billion human lives ended on August 29th, 1997." With my theory, that is a timeline that may not exist, so reality would've reset to a point when circumstances led to the decision to conceive/make/activate Skynet. One experiencing deja vu is not responsible for turning left instead of right and thus is somehow the person who curbed the Rise Of The Machines, understand. You could just be buying groceries. Your life is a collateral rewrite over deleted data for the overlap period in which Skynet could exist or not exist.

The second is that the Mandela Effect (read about it here, or watch the great Season 11 [!] episode of The X Files: "The Lost Art Of Forehead Sweat") is a symptom -- a knock-on effect -- of the reality-saving correction mechanism felt through deja vu. Maybe we aren't misremembering. Maybe Fiona Broome (link again) has a memory of Nelson Mandela dying in prison in the 1980s because she experienced a reality in which it happened, and such was not supposed to happen, and so it was made -- somehow, someway -- to NOT happen. Good for Mr. Mandela; good for everyone, really.

It's enough for us layfolk to leave any puzzling over these phenomena, which are easily explained/set aside as the still-unknown products of a still-lightly understood organ (the brain). I don't stress over any of it. If I'm right, then one theory is benign and the other one's banal: thank you for another pleasant day to sit in the park and read; I don't give a shit that the 18th President was McClellan and is/was now Grant. Seems to have worked out; McClellan seems like a cock. But it's good exercise, I think, to consider possibilities grander than what we can access but grounded in enough reality to not be waved away as magic.

I haven't felt deja vu in quite some time and haven't shared many memories. I'm going to see live music this week; I swear it'll be like the last year never happened.

Part Four of a Stalemate script follows below. Start on page 19 per the counter, if you're caught up.