#TheAlgorithm II: Post Mortem
It’s an early fall morning in Middletown, CT. The biggest foodie event in all of New England, The Big E, should be commencing in 48 hours. In recent years, there has been a massive controversy surrounding the Big E: The infamous Elephant rides. Within the past five years, animal rights activists from around the nation have shown up in protest. Most of these protests would remain peaceful until about a year ago when the protests would escalate. The event had to temporarily shut down for a day last year due to the protesting evolving into a full-on riot: Stands were trashed, police were deployed in riot gear, and chaos ensued, leaving 8 people dead and 34 injured.
A writer for the local paper with 1.4 million Twitter followers, Arthur Blake is a regular press attendee at this event. Graduating undergrad and just starting grad school, Arthur has always attended the Big E ever since he was 6 years old. As a kid, Arthur always partook in the elephant rides. Riding the elephants became a family tradition, in a way. He always looked forward to riding the elephants despite it being potentially detrimental to his future in journalism.
At about 2 am, in Massachusetts, where the fair is being held, a massive cargo plane lands at a sizable distance from the fairgrounds. The cages on board contain elephants who are clearly in distress. Two cages facing each other, in particular, have a mother in one and a child in the other. Off to the side, behind a tree, lies a slender figure dressed head to toe in black using a pair of binoculars to spy on the plane that has recently landed. As the handlers map out where the elephants will be put until the fair kicks off, a heavy tin can is tossed into a crowd of unsuspecting workers, emitting tear gas.
The tear gas invades the space of every unsuspecting worker present at the scene as the stealthy but nimble figure weaves its way in and out of the smoke. One of the handlers turns to his right as a cage door is flung wide open. As he faces the cage, the matriarchal elephant from before stares down the handler. Poised with a sense of vengeance, she grabs the twig-like man with her trunk and hauls him to the wall. Like a rag doll soaked in tomato sauce, the worker’s corpse sticks to the wall…