Welcome to your future.

Spaceships. Jet packs. Laser guns. 


Fifty years from now, the future will still be shaped by the mundane, the stupid, and the petty, living side by side with the Big Ideas. Dirty, shining, poor, glorious, filthy, and wonderful. 50.YFN is where we tell our future's story, hangover and all.

In its short life,
50.YFN has already become a very sharply defined setting, with unique language and history. Because of the ongoing storylines and broad geographical setting, we strongly recommend using the archives and category tags before throwing yourself in the deep end. Read the guidelines, take a look around. There's a truly talented pool of creators breathing life into our world Fifty Years From Now.

You are welcome to be a part of it.

And remember:

This is not a land-grab. There's no turf.  If you're a new writer, you have the same access to Brooklyn as I do, and as much an opportunity to leave your imprint on it. Don't be intimidated. Leave your brand on the future alongside everyone else. It's your world too. 


48th Street + Avenue of the Americas

by Monk, New York City, NY, USA

Some call him the International Man.

About five-foot-three, built like an overgrown badger: most of the mass in the upper third of his body, especially around the neck and shoulders. He's seen a lot of life in his time, and almost as much death. Formative years in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, then when that fell apart, in the Counterrevolutionary Army. When that fell apart, he joined an Azeri ethnic insurgency cell, picking Iran's carcass like the rest of the jackals. When the scavengers grew too thick, he snuck into Azerbaijan and got a cousin to vouch for him. His next five years were spent in the Doorkicker Squad of Baku's police department, breaking up terrorist and slavery rings, before rushing to the front lines in the Nakhchivan Secession. When the Federalists lost and the country split, he found himself in the oil-impoverished half of What-Was-Once-Azerbaijan. On the road again, this time to a cousin's house in Gush Katif, where he got a job as security in an an international shipping company. His legs got blown off in a botched hijack, woke up in Beth Israel Los Angeles. He liked the meat on his Mexican nurse's backside, and decided to stay. One day he just wheeled himself out the front door, and the next, he was staying with her in a one bedroom shack in South Los Angeles, just in time for the Little Big One, which wrenched southern California out of the continent's pelvis and tossed it like a severed penis into the Pacific toilet. Like most refugees, he ended up in Phoenix. Not exactly content with the gelatin quality of the air, he used his last three gold fillings and the sale of his slightly pickled kidney to fly him to Paterson, New Jersey, where he stayed with the brother of his dead Mexican nurse. After the first week, they opted for separate living arrangements, what with the knife he'd buried in his roommate's chest. His time in the overcrowded prison was mercifully short given he wasn't technically a citizen. But, then, there wasn't a whole lot of paperwork confirming his citizenship anywhere, so when the New Jersey State Police delivered him to the Azerbaijan Embassy in Manhattan for formal diplomatic eviction, there wasn't a whole lot the ambassador had to say.

New Jersey didn't want him.

There was no Azerbaijan to ship him back to.

Properly vested in purgatory, the International Man got himself a room in Rego Park, Queens from a Bukharanian woman with terrible scars on her face and neck, but full heavy breasts and thighs you could crush aluminum girders between.

The International Man has seen a lot in his time, but not with his own eyes. Those were blow out back in his Counterrevolutionary days. These were re-grown for him in a lab outside Isfahahan, along with most of his jaw. His ears haven't worked in eighteen years, function replaced by a second-rate cochlear implant implanted by an unexpectedly skilled surgeon in backalley Baku, recently expatriated from Nigeria. Well, loosely Nigeria: most of Africa was desert these days, and the borders were more than a little blurred. All that mattered was the surgeon's steady hand, and the tinny quality to the cochlear implants were better than no quality at all. His right arm is mostly short-string polymer and fiber optic cable, plugged indelicately into a mauled shoulder socket after a rocket attack on the warehouse in Gush Katif. Built somewhere in a Tel Aviv factory, with the same warranty as a Yugoslavian ultracompact car. His legs below the knee are noticeably darker than the rest of him. That's probably because they were salvaged from someone of African-American descent, and transplanted hastily in a West Los Angeles hospital by a Korean-designed surgical robot. His biological arm is something of an art piece: animated tattoos from a carnival of anonymous donors, some in Farsi, some in Arabic, some in Hebrew, some in English, dancing languidly across his skin like a sun-scorched movie screen.

His English is pretty thin, but he's mastered the epithets. I'm a bit of a pussy, by his reckoning, using my cellphone to check my mail, the news, weather. He points to a new glowing tattoo on his forearm that streams news from Al-Jazeera, Ha'aretz, the Daily Wallstreet Post, and a bunch of esoteric feeds I've never heard of. He refers to my phone as a 'woman's purse' and my only argument is that I hate the idea of live tattoos, because of all the GPS crap embedded in them. I ask him if his right arm is the only thing made out of pipestem parts, or if maybe he'd had the optional upgrade done below his waist as well. He flips me the pincer-equivalent of the bird.

Which is polite compared to the nearby street vendors, who call him 'Blackfoot' because of his mismatched limbs. When I see him, it's the same lop-sided ceramic smile, pat on the shoulder from his tri-pincered arm, and offer of high-octane diesel coffee and stale baklava. Sometimes fresh halvah from a store in Kew Gardens, cut into slices from a turd-shaped loaf wrapped in wax paper. Always the same fare: tin carafe burning sugar, coffee, and distilled tap water over a small upright propane burner. Buck-seventy-five for coffee and a pastry.

Some people call him the International Man.

I just call him the coffee cart guy on 48th Street.


Kristoffer said...

Okay, I understand now. This is dope.

Words from Monk. said...


THAT'S all it took?