Lander, WY – Our very own staff at Irkutsk Ice Truckers is proud to say that they’ve saved a joyous Christmas for Wyoming Catholic College seniors. Today, at probably the worst possible time (not that there is a good time to lose a thesis of course…), devastation seemed about to befall most of them in the apparent loss of the only copy of the final drafts of their theses. But with quick help from WCC student organizations, IIT staff, as soon as they heard of this devastating loss, worked to recover printouts they had seen lying around throughout school buildings and avert what could have been a doubling in size of the junior class.
Here’s what happened:
A mixup in Student Life announcements and one too many open nights at the Pequod combined to the near-disaster announced today where while singing WCC’s AlmaMater, they ceremoniously burned the flash drives on which they had placed their thesis moments before.
As professors attempted to begin grading their advisees’ theses this week, the mixup only became known today as the PondScum reported the “fatal misunderstanding”. Seniors were just starting to learn of their tragic loss, stoically reported first by IIT’s rival in Lander news reporting, but IIT staff, moving even faster to act for the good of the community as a whole, swung into action.
Jumping into our fleet of ice trucks this morning, which are even faster than the proverbial Santa’s sleigh, or though we have to consult with our theology experts first, the Angel Gabriel carrying the message to Mary, we all returned to Lander from our various scattered locations around the country at the emergency signal of our chairman Everett Polinski. A plan was made on the way to Lander for all as Shadow Flame and the Sick and Savage coordinated our efforts.
Searching through school buildings with the assistance of Allysa, Sarah, Braden, and the Triumvirate, and in thirty-eight different spots each of which the seniors had themselves forgotten, we found final printed copies of their theses. Some of them still had notes on them, but with help from the real Omnisciens and the equivocal Omnisciens, who had been helping half the seniors with the theses, we scanned, edited, and saved thirty-eight completed theses. Saved… well, sort of. Technically, the theses were all late, so we had to find a way to make it look like the mixup, which properly speaking, was not the seniors’ fault, had never happened.
Anslam Technologies offered to provide thirty-eight replacement flash drives from their factory in Irkutsk, so our bravest drivers offered to do our nightly trunk route from Lander-Anchorage-Irkutsk and reverse in half our usual eight hours. We’d somehow get these back into professors’ offices with a note or something..
But first, the run had to be finished, and Christmas Eve traffic is a thing, even in Alaska, Siberia, and the short run of our route, the most dangerous part, through gangster-controlled land in the area falsely known as Canada. At our usual rate of five-hundred miles an hour, these obstacles are avoidable, especially as all of our trucks usually also have a full-time gun operator. But it was even worse today, as not only did we have to weave our trucks and a thousand miles an hour through twice the normal traffic, the “Canadians”, the gangsters who currently control that land had military-grade tanks in operation on the main ice highway we use through what’s reallyNorth Montana. But luckily Jack Swindell, just off from drill with the US Army, was up in front with S. Ezra Smith in our lead truck, guns blasting. We were slightly concerned for a moment until The Other Canadian showed up.
She, MaryAnne was able to rouse a band of local revolutionaries who were relatives of Dr. Grove to distract the bandits. But it still took almost continuous shooting by the First Adventuress and a lot more ducking and weaving until we passed the worst of the bandit opposition.
More trouble came because of our speed. Since we were almost going faster than our bullets according to Omnisnicens’ analysis (But still not as fast as Ian’s car) we were using up twice as much fuel as normal and we’d soon be out. Theo called ahead for us to the Houser’s in Alaska and they had a mix of our proprietary pseudo-atomic fuel prepared so we altered our course and refilled at their home, Theo himself showing up to help us.
He offered to help drive, at which moment we realized that we hadn’t been wearing our seatbelts the whole time. In a flash, we did so, luckily just in time as the Bering Strait was ahead. It was a raging blizzard, ten times worse with almost no visibility, and to make it through it took all of the skills of our computer expert Aretari to manage our radar system and find a path across. We had to give up on our regular quadrille pattern path that we were used to using for the crossing, but at least we got across, with good news coming from Lander as we did so
“Don’t worry, faster faster, we’ve got to get these flash drives back by Christmas,” came a voice over the radio. It was Dr. Benoski, calling in on the IIT radio bands. “Just get the drives and get back to Lander, I’ll help you get them up to the offices.
Luckily we had Funcle driving with us and not Mom and Mom’s boyfriend (this is a joke from horsemanship) so we had the radio on and could hear this message, coming as it did in between hours of listening to the Trans Siberian Orchestra, who while running some pretty fierce competition for us up in the arctic with their subsidiary Trans Siberian Trucking, also do have some pretty good music that fits our heavy metal nature.
And the way was pretty smooth once we got into Russia. Clearing customs took a few minutes, but Joe Pho and Everett were able to expedite it to a little faster than our usual ten minutes with their Russian ancestry. Soon we were just about flying again through the hills of Siberia and reached Anslam Technologies in Irkutsk. Theo again helped us load up the thirty-eight flash drives into our trucks and we turned around, it still being early evening back in Lander. With the so-called Fates of Geometry on our side (in reality: “Faith, which is basically hope that there is hope”), we could hopefully make it back in time. Ruth was in the back of one of our larger trucks and prepared a German Christmas Eve dinner which Nathan Hatley and Bernadette Aguirre helped catapult to the other drivers and, having faced them hours before, we came through the dangers of the Bering Strait and “Canada” far better than the first time.
We had to slow down when we entered Lander for some obvious reasons but at around 10 pm our armada parked in front of Baldwin where Chris Carter had prepared coffee with the assistance of Lilyana and Gavin. Once set up at a computer terminal, where luckily for us, the WiFi was working, we quickly saved the theses on each drive and rushed them into the office of each professor, Ernie Thee Bass unlocking the offices for us. Each was placed down, with a note from Dr. Benoski telling each to accept it. The day was saved, and there was going to be a senior class next semester.
But it was nearly 11 pm in Lander and at the suggestion of the Average Muslim Liturgist our entire rescue team decided to attend the Midnight Mass, it being, of course, Christmas Eve. We prayed a prayer of thanksgiving for our success and we transmitted news of the same to all the seniors at SpoonsMcGee’s suggestion via the now installed dorm landline phones.
The seniors could now rejoice, their theses were over, the strife was o’er. And singing broke out for the remainder of the time before Mass.
At the Mass, with Fr. Schmacher presiding, Fr. Ward assisting, and dozens serving, the day was done with the most important act of all. For in the Fullness of Time, Christus Venit. Gaudete. And He brought and brings victory over the enemies that even now seem a threat, the Spartans, the Masters, etc.
The story continues for us, but in time made full when we move outside of the particularity of material time of experience there is ultimately a light in the darkness, unity between the story yet unfinished in our time and it as it is in its fullness.
Dangers more might come tomorrow, the various mysteries of the Baking Oresteia, WCCLE 5, the weird disappearances in the sophomore class, the TAC fire, Crux Coffee, the WCC basement, strange attacks around Lander, the rumored secret prefect meetings, and all other mysteries which IIT has made uncovering its goal. Dangers also remain from nature, from rivals, from our own deficiencies.
But into time came He who was its fullness. Into a fallen world came a light.
Merry Christmas from the IIT Staff!
Jeremiah Davis Smith
S. Ezra Smith
Ernie Thee Bass
and Everard Polinski
And the next name could be you! Join the IIT staff by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org