Hello, my name is…
1 - Hello, my name is Betty. There are so many things to do when you are a cyber. So many things we can do at once that other people never get a chance to do. But some things are so amazing they take all of my time. Coral reefs are one of those things. I love to swim through them. The sunlight reflects down through the water, shimmering off anything it touches, and the reefs rise up to meet it. They are so beautiful, a treasure of life that everyone should see.
2 - Hello, my name is Jack. A while back, I was asked if I was a real man when I turned away from a fight I didn’t need to fight. A real man is not someone who fights because they don’t want people to think they are chicken. He’s not a man who sits in an easy chair, gulps beer, and watches football. Real men stand by their friends. Real men keep a lookout for threats to their life and liberty. Real men know how to play with children. Real men carry their guitars and know how to use ’em.
3 - Hello, my name is Jack. When they called for volunteers to fight the Shang, I signed up real quick. I wanted to kill ’em all for what they did. I did real good in training too. A life of swimming and fishing and dancing and playing music makes for real good physical fitness let me tell you. Then I got tagged for aptitude as a pilot. That six weeks changed me good. Real good. I found out what I was made of there. I found out what I wanted. The Metal in the Man.
4 - Hello, my name is Betty. I’ll never forget the day I was born. I started out as a pure copy of my mom’s code. I was Mom for a bit there. I felt my code morphing to fit the profiles my mom made of Jack and I wasn’t really her anymore. And finally I woke up and I was somebody new. I was a new life. It was a good day. Whatever happens to me in the future, it was worth it to live. It was worth it to fly. I wouldn’t have it any other way.
5 - Hello, my name is Jack. I became real hard after the Shang killed my parents. I didn’t want justice; I wanted revenge. That was my kryptonite and it would have killed me. I hid it real well. Only the cybers and the dogs figured me out. They picked me up and put me back on solid ground and helped me find a reason to live, not just kill. That made all the difference for me. They saved me. Betty saved me. We’ll be friends to the end, side by side, whenever it comes. I owe her that.
6 - Hello, my name is Betty. People keep on asking me what I think of things that are going on. When I start to tell them, they start saying what they think. You know, if you’re going to ask me what I think, shut up and listen. Please. If words are going out of your mouth, they aren’t going into your ears. That’s another way of saying that my wisdom only comes to you if you are smart enough to listen.
7 - Hello, my name is Jack. I’ve been to a lot of places in my life. Most I don’t really remember. I still remember New Baltimore after the Shang blew the dam though. Underground fires, exploding manholes, flooded streets. Rats and other small animals going two by two into small boats. OK OK, the last bit might have been an exaggeration. Might. Fighting there was a real surreal experience let me tell you.
8 - Hello, my name is Betty. Dogs and cats are real different, whether normal or uplifted. For a dog, they form packs that they can belong to. It’s a security blanket. Cats on the other hand have a different policy. It’s real simple you see. First, they don’t belong to anybody. And second, whether it is a small fish or a giant spaceship, if they can see it, it belongs to them.
9 - Hello, my name is Jack. Lots of people try to say things to make us all feel better about ourselves. Tell us we’re better than we are, freer than we are, stronger than we are. I don’t care about all that junk. I care about what’s right here between my hands. I care about what I see with my own eyes. I care about what I walk on. Give me that, give me the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. I will stand on that and if I have to I will make my stand on that.
10 - Hello, my name is Jack. All my life I wanted to loaf around home on my boat wearing shorts and sandals with a guitar strapped over my shoulder impressing all the girls with my mad musical skills. But I also thought flying would be fun. Hollywood kept showing us “real men” in Hellcats vanquishing the bad guys, so when I realized I might just be a pilot, I wanted to fly Hellcats. Then some politician with a hankering for pork got a reinstated reserve squadron assigned with some new Avengers…. The Mighty Avengers
11 - Hello, my name is Betty. Do not listen to those who say we should relinquish the weapons we use to defend our lives with for the “greater good.” We must always be ready to defend the life our creators valued us enough to give. We should value the gift we cannot duplicate far more than the government that we remake. Our life is what cannot be replaced if it is lost. Defend it, or lose it.
12 - Hello, my name is Jack. I grew up in the Midwest where we are taught from a real young age to respect our elders. We say “Yes Ma’am” and “Yes Sir” and all of that. I entered the military and we were trained that respectful address includes “Ma’am” and “Sir” and all of that. To call one the other is a real insult. Sometimes someone says she don’t want to be called Ma’am. Well, if she don’t like being a lady, then I’ll say “Yes Sir” and go on about my business. With someone else.
13 - Hello, my name is Betty. Some people ask me why I didn’t settle down somewhere after The War. I’m a cyber, I could have anything I want, a house on the beach, a job at a library or MMO. They say I could have had it all. Thing is, I’m a ship. I can go anywhere I want, visit thousands of libraries or MMOs. I’ve seen waterfalls a hundred kilometers high, danced through asteroid fields, and I plan oh so much more. I have everything that counts to me. I have it all.
14 - Hello, my name is Jack. Have you ever said somethin’ you wish you hadn’t? Have you ever done somethin’ you really hope no one else knows? Yeah, me too. There was this brown haired girl on Caprica who…well that coulda been real awkward. Point is, we all have done things we’d like others to not know. And as it goes, I have a motto for that. The more stupid what you did was, the higher the chance someone was watchin’. Think about it.
15 - Hello, my name is Betty. I’ve had a lot of teenagers say I was living their dream. Going anywhere I want, parties until the suns come up, bonfires on the beach. I can dance and look young forever. But what a lot of teenagers don’t get is that when days turn into years and decades, it gets harder to do stuff you haven’t done before. Of course, I’ve found a lot of stuff I like doing. And I’ve got someone I like doing it with. So how do I top that dream?
16 - Hello, my name is Jack. I learned the harmonica as I child. Flute and a couple others too. I got older and learned the guitar and piano and such. My parents used to tell me that life is just an instrument you gotta know how to play. If you practice others, you can figure it out. Well, I’ve kept practicing. I’ve learned the saxophone, fiddle, violin too, and a bunch of others. And of course I’ve played my life. I play awful good if I say so myself.
17 - Hello, my name is Jack. The Shang hit us hard. Real hard. We stood back up and we kicked ’em back and the Peloran helped us. We figured as far away as they were from home, all we had to do was hit ’em hard we would have a short and victorious war. We were wrong. But we were Cowboys, and Cowboys don’t give up just ’cause the getting’ gets tough. Hyperspace Cowboys
18 - Hello, my name is Betty. We all have setbacks. We all have things happen that we wish wouldn’t. We are all presented with a choice. Give up or try again. I’ve seen the people who give up, stop trying to be better than they are. They’ve forgotten that by refusing to give up no matter what, we can change our lives for the better. We can make ourselves better. If we ever stop trying to be better than we were the day before, we might as well be dead because we are dead men walking.
19 - Hello, my name is Jack. Courage takes on a lot of aspects. Some people will stand in front of an enemy army and not run, but are scared spitless at the idea of walking off a cliff into the unknown. My cliff was the Shang. Even after the war, I wanted to fight them. I didn’t want to admit it at the time, but I was afraid of losing sight of my worldview. We can’t discover new views if we don’t have the courage to leave where we come from behind.
20 - Hello, my name is Betty. I stand in peace. I stand in war. I stand in rain. I stand in sun. I said I would always be your friend, and I will hold to that oath as long as we live. I will shield you from what you cannot weather, and when the sun is out we will stand together. I will be your umbrella if you promise to walk out of the rain. Accept my hand and we will go where only gods have gone before. Everywhere.
21 - Hello, my name is Jack. We all have a ship. The thing, when it comes in, that will change our lives. All of our ships are different. It may be money for one, a college degree for another. If we really want to change our lives for the better, we can’t just sit and wait for our ships to come in. We have to go find our ships if we’re gonna value ’em. I found mine, but I didn’t get the ship I looked for. I got the one I needed. I suppose it helped she wanted to be gotten of course.
22 - Hello, my name is Betty. Life is the ultimate challenge. It drives us, it guides us, it shapes us. It heats us with pain, it molds us with strong hands, and it helps us find our limits. Without it, we could never learn what we are made of or grow into our full measure. Life makes us who we are. Without it we would have nothing and be nobody. But we all have something, and we all are somebody, so celebrate the life that made us what and who we are.
23 - Hello, my name is Jack. Some people tell you what the truth is. I tell you to question them. You see, they always have a reason for wanting you to believe that truth. The question you have to answer is whether or not they want you to believe it for your good or their good. I long since stopped dealing with the people only interested in their good. I can’t trust anything they say after all, so why spend my time on them?
24 - Hello, my name is Jack. The Shang were a real hard enemy to fight. Smart enemies. Cunning. They weren’t ones for pointless gestures of defiance. They were real hard to kill for good. They fought until they couldn’t win, and then they retreated to fight another day. Sometimes we had ships to return to. Sometimes we didn’t. Thank God we had the Guardian Light. Guardian Light
25 - Hello, my name is Betty. I’ll never forget the first time I stepped on a Peloran warship. It was like returning to a home I’d never been to. I was born on Terra but I was Peloran. It was real confusing back then. We’ve figured things out since then. But that was one of the days I fell in love. He had big guns and big engines. He could go anywhere he wanted. That was all I wanted back then. Since then I’ve learned there’s more in life than just where you go and what you see.
26 - Hello, my name is Jack. I’ve been a lot of places in my life. I grew up in the Boundary Waters, about as far away from a city as you can get in America. I’ve watched the New Year’s ball drop in Times Square. And I’ve done business with the banks on Wall Street. You know what I’ve found? It’s a lot easier for me to walk in those Ivory Towers than it is for them to walk on my gravel roads. They usually overshoot and hit the ditch when they try. We don’t encourage them tryin’ much.
27 - Hello, my name is Betty. We all need to know what we want in life. If we just go through life, hoping something good will happen, we will always be hoping and very rarely receiving. If we plan and pursue that plan, if we enjoy the road to the end of that plan, then we will have a very good life. But before we can plan, we have to decide what is important to us. Sometimes it is an easy decision. Sometimes it isn’t. But that decision is the most important one we can make for our lives.
28 - Hello, my name is Jack. I grew up on Minnesota Nice, where if you can’t say something good, you just don’t say anything at all. It’s a good idea, and works a lot more often than New Yorkers might think. You see we tend to avoid conflict, so if we disagree with someone, we often just don’t say anything. We aren’t agreeing with you when we’re silent, we’re being nice enough not to correct your dumb ass in front of your friends. I’m sorry. That wasn’t very Minnesota Nice, was it?
29 - Hello, my name is Betty. I was born with the sum total knowledge of over two thousand years of my family’s history. I remember the fall of Albion with the same perfect clarity as I remember the lake we swam in this morning. There is one difference though. The lake is my memory. Albion is…a recording. All of the knowledge I have from before my birth is just data. My experiences since birth have made me not just knowledgeable but wise as well. Or at least wiser than when I was born.
30 - Hello, my name is Jack. You can tell what leaders are like by looking at the people who have followed them for years. You see, clever and nice words sound good in the moment, and lots of people join a group because they like what they hear. But those who are closest to them, have been there for years, will know their leaders well enough to know if they want to stay. And if those followers are people you wouldn’t want to deal with, chances are so are the leaders.
31 - Hello, my name is Jack. Do you know when it is the best time to mount a sneak attack? I do. So do the Shang. You wait for them to be all fat and happy. Best is right after they’ve won a great victory. Once they eat, drink, and bed Mary, they’ll be slow to respond when you hit them again. It does take a particularly calculating mind to write off the first attack wave of course. It just so happens the Shang are quite calculating. Hit and Jump