This Page Unintentionally Left Blank

By Wesley Parish

sfgenreI don’t remember the moment when the problem text crossed my desk. My supervisor was busy trying to chat up the new guy, and so I had to do the proofreading without her rather dubious advice.

It was easy going, perhaps better written than the great majority of governmental screeds that cross my desk.

But my supervisor had made a point of reminding me that very morning to watch out for pages with ‘This page left intentionally blank’ printed on them. We had to keep our costs down, after all. Too many unnecessary blank pages, and we would be over budget, and that would get taken out of our wages.

Fair enough. Enough of a threat to make me take it seriously.

After three such pages were marked ‘unnecessary’ and one left as it was, the next one threw me — what precisely was I to do about a page marked 'This page unintentionally left blank'?

I mean, it either is intentionally left blank, or just forgotten about.

And if it had not been intentionally left blank, then what was the writer trying to say, informing the reader that it had not been his intention to leave it blank? And if it had not been his intention to leave it blank, why was it still blank?

I mentioned the problem to Samantha, whose desk is next closest to mine. She couldn't make head or tail of it, and mentioned it to some of the others, who crowded around my desk in puzzlement and wonder, thus igniting the ire of my supervisor, who charged into the fray with a vengeance, breathing threats of fire and devastation ... until she too was brought face-to-face with the offending page.

The room fell silent. You could hear a pin drop. Then someone fainted.

That ended work for the week. I finally took sick leave and headed off to the Gold Coast. Samantha checked into a mental hospital. And the last I heard, the supervisor had sworn vengeance on the writer of that document and was busy tracking him down in the Ministry he worked at.

I mean, there is something terribly wrong about a universe where such things can happen, isn't there?

rocket crux 2 75

About The Author

Wes Parish

Wesley Parish is an SF fan from early childhood. Born in PNG, he enjoys reading about humans in strange cultures and circumstances; his favourite SF authors include Ursula Le Guin, Fritz Lieber, Phillip K. Dick, J.G. Ballard and Frank Herbert. He lives in Christchurch, NZ, is an unemployed Java and C programmer, and has recently decided to become a mad ukuleleist, flautist and trombonist, and would love to revert to being the mad fiddler and pedal steel guitarist..  "Where oh where has my little pedal steel got to ... ?"

aus25grn

AntiSF & The ASFF

AntipodeanSF supports the ASFF

asff img

Please visit the ASFF website and consider joining for up-to-date info about Australian SF cons, awards, competitions, and to receive the Foundation's newsletter, Instrumentality, and more.

<http://asff.org.au>

Download AntiSF E-Book

Epub version: 

Kindle version: 

The AntipodeanSF Radio Show

In The Next Issue...

Coming In Issue 234

Forager
by Christine Gladstone

Ice, Forever
by Col Cort

Psychically Transferred Phantom Pains
by Wesley Parish

Purgatory
by Sue Clennell

Selena Ops
by Tony Steven Williams

The Bucket List
by Jackie Hosking

The Coroner
by Ann Zimmerman

The Half-Life Of Humans
by Kevin J. Phyland

Tsnik
by Max Young

Wanderlust
by Eugen M. Bacon and E. Don Harpe

Get Dimension 6

D6sidebar

Get Dimension 6 Speculative Fiction

From Coeur De Lion Publishing

Here at AntiSF
Download D6 Now!

"Trust me, you want this free speculative fiction e-zine."
(Rob Hood)

AntipodeanSF December 2017

ISSUE 233

Speculative Fiction
Downside-Up
ISSN 1442-0686

Online Since Feb 1998

rocket crux 2 75

SF News

SF News

Norma K Hemming Award Calling For Submissions

The Australian Science Fiction Foundation (ASFF) is pleased to welcome entries in the Norma K Hemming Award for works published in 2016 and 2017. Designed to recognise excellence in the exploration of themes of race, gender, sexuality, class or disability in a published speculative fiction work, the Norma K Hemming Award is now open for entries. The award is open to short fiction, novellas, novels, anthologies, collections, graphic novels and stage plays, and makes allowances for serialised work.  For more information:  <https://normakhemmingaward.org/2017/11/08/entries-are-now-open-for-the-2018-norma-k-hemming-award/>.

For more SF news why not join the ASFF and get our newsletter “The Instrumentality” delivered straight to your inbox!

Upcoming Aussie Cons

Star Wars: The Force Awakens in Concert: Palais Theatre, St Kilda Melbourne. 7-9 December 2017. The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra will present the exclusive Australian premiere of Star Wars: The Concert Series with The Force Awakens at St Kilda’s newly refurbished Palais Theatre, featuring a full screening of the film with Oscar-winning composer John Williams’ classic score performed live to picture, led by conductor Nicholas Buc. For Bookings: <https://www.mso.com.au/whats-on/2017/star-wars-the-force-awakens/>.

Genghiscon 2018:  Gaming convention. Trinity Residential College, University of Western Australia,19-21 January 2018. <https://2018.genghiscon.org/>.

Walker Stalker Convention: Walking Dead convention The Dome at Sydney Showgrounds. 3-4 February 2018 and 10-11 February 2018 Melbourne Showgrounds. <http://walkerstalkercon.com/sydney/>.

Confurgence 2018: Furry convention 23-25 February 2018. Amora Hotel Riverwalk, Melbourne. <http://ausfancons.com/confurgence/>

Swancon 2018 (Natcon): Pan Pacific Hotel, Perth. This is the 2018 Australian National Convention: “Transmogrification”, (Easter) 29  March to 02 April 2018 . Guests: Kameron Hurley, Ryan Griffen, Barb de la Hunty.  More information: <http://swancon.com.au/>

Continuum XIV: Conjugation. Melbourne’s SF Convention. 8th – 11th June, 2018. More information: <http://www.continuum.org.au/>.

Nullus Anxietas VII: The Australian Discworld Convention – will be held in Melbourne on April 12-14, 2019, and is themed on Going Postal. More information: <https://ausdwcon.org/>

For more up-to-date Aussie SF info join the ASFF: <asff.org.au>

AntiSF will be at the National Convention, Swancon (2018).

The AntipodeanSF Radio Show

AntiSF Radio Show

antipod-show-50The AntipodeanSF Radio Show delivers audio from the pages of this magazine.

The weekly program features the stories from recently published issues, usually narrated by the authors themselves.

Listen to the latest episode now:

The AntipodeanSF Radio Show is also broadcast on community radio, 2NVR, 105.9FM every Saturday evening at 8:30pm.

You can find every broadcast episode online here: http://antisf.libsyn.com 

S5 Box

Login Form

S5 Register

You need to enable user registration from User Manager/Options in the backend of Joomla before this module will activate.

SF Quote

If you want to see the true measure of a man, watch how he treats his inferiors, not his equals.

J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire