“Enough, Already,” Says Human History
By any standard, this has been a busy year: pandemic, election,
natural disasters, and more.
But that’s about to end.
“Starting next month,” says Leanne Artrusco, a scientist at the U.S.
Department of Records, “there will be no more news.”
Whenever Artrusco makes this announcement, as she did during a virtual
conference hosted by the Smithsonian Institution last month or at a
socially-distant event before twelve of the nation’s governors,
people look at her strangely.
“They tilt their heads or squint their eyes,” Artrusco says.
“Sometimes both at the same time. And so I have to explain.”
She explains: it isn’t that next month will bring a change in the way
that news is reported, or that there will be a renewed push for
healthier habits in news consumption.
“Nope,” she says. “There will be no more news. Zip. Zero. Zilch. Over.
Artrusco has been working around-the-clock with a team of scientists,
including time-travel specialists, to ensure that beginning on
November 15, there will be no more events. The team, known around the
office as The Gone Squad, has been assigned to the project since 2017,
when it first became clear that the amount of news was ruinous to the
healthy lives of humans.
“It’s not going to be that nothing happens,” Artrusco says. “But when
things happen, they won’t be events. They won’t be recorded, or even
recordable. People will never know about them. They’ll just live their
Not all occurrences will be affected, Artrusco is quick to add.
“People can still fall in love. They can eat meals. They can sleep. And
they can even canoodle.” She laughs. “Canoodle: you know what I mean
by that, right? It’s a word my grandmother used to use when I would go
out with boys in high school. Oh, we canoodled.”
The faraway look in her eye disappeared. “At any rate, we want people
to get back to their own lives. And that’s why the news has to
disappear. Everyone agrees it’s too distracting by half, and that
virtually none of it matters.”
The only problem that Artrusco has is that when the Gone Squad does
launch its initiative, no one will know. “We can’t make news with our
elimination of the news. So people will just have to sense it.”