A Message that Needs Decoding

I was so tired.  I knew I should keep responding to the students in my online class, but I had to put my head down for a minute.  Just one minute.  Then I’d gulp down some tea and keep working.  I leaned over the keyboard and found a spot for my forehead on the three inches of desk top before the monitor asserted its place.  I thought I’d try just a minute or two of repose—just a chance to close my eyes and rest. 

I woke up disoriented.  It took a moment to realize that I was up in my study, leaning on my keyboard.  I sat up and there on the page in front of me were these words:

“ehtfsdo sssswjeoinsfa; joi w4tlhk.”

Of course, I knew immediately this was a very important message from some otherworldly muse.  Or perhaps an alien creature trying to contact earth.  Or even a celestial being! 

But what did it mean?  Help!

31 responses to “A Message that Needs Decoding

  1. If you’re a Fatso wear “BigAss” Swiss jeans for joyful walking and talking.

  2. Elwood’s match made a hissing sound as we smoked a joint in San Francisco on the Fourth of July – I think…

  3. Okay – this is not intended for you, Ann. It’s just what my mind saw (and it actually could be directed to me through my subconscious.)

    Hey fatso, So why don’t your jeans fit? Jog or walk for thin.

  4. Parrot, one of us should be very worried that we think alike.

  5. Oh Ann! ehtfsdo sssswjeoinsfa; joi w4tlhk means — send lots of chocolate to Pamela – immediately (with whipped cream, please). Tip: Bacardi Chocolate Rum Cake. Thank you.

  6. How about:
    Get your silly forehead off the “s” key before you send an instant message full of strange joy to four tall hunks.

  7. I was struck dumb when I saw the revelation. It is probably an indication of my unworthiness that at the moment I should have been rejoicing, all I could think was, “Why Ann instead of me?!!” The most obvious feature of the intergalactic code were the references to Masons, Mormons, and Melchesidek in the fifth crypto-integration unit. I began by converting the Roman characters to their Hebraic numeral equivalents (including, you’ll immediately note, the significant, single embedded Arabic character– that threw me for a few seconds).Then I could see clearly that the message belonged to that class of integrated communication used exclusively, as everyone knows, by the Spanish Inquisition. With that key in hand, I was able to transmogrify the result through a series of Fourier transformations keyed on the Gospel of Mark. The result was apocalyptic in its import, but nevertheless, crystal. They’re coming– and soon! Perhaps by the end of the Martian year…

  8. Whatever you’ve been reading, or imbibing, I think we should all have some. A creative lurch into revelations, Martian visitations, and transmorgrification!

    • One of these days I’ll learn to proofread well. Thanks for overlooking spelling and verb agreement, Ann, but I’m still trying to figure out why they chose you as their vessel of communication. We’ll just have to ask them when they get here.

  9. They always choose the leader, Bob.

  10. Ann, This is a scary assignment. I’m cautiously descending the creaky wooden steps to the dark, damp basement. I can’t see much as I only have my candle from Lesson 2 to light the way. Will rats, spiders or other creepy crawlers from the night get me before I get what I’m looking for?

    I think it’s over here near the crawl space. I hope there is no boa constrictor hiding under the house just waiting for this opportunity to get ME. Maybe I should forget this crazy quest and get back to the safety of upstairs? Is that a rustling sound I hear? Quick… Here it is. My wooden, secret lock-panel box where I’ve stored my childhood treasures.

    I clamor up the stairs with such alacrity that the flame of my special candle goes out. I open the box and carefully remove my Captain Midnight secret decoder badge. I double-check each letter as I enter the mysterious message obviously left by some alien being. At last I’m done and I’ll be dogged if the message doesn’t say, ZZZZZZZZ.

    • I’m laughing so hard! I never had a secret decoder badge, but I always felt gypped that I didn’t get one. You actually found yours. I imagine it is priceless by now.

      Let’s make sure we always look for secret messages all around.

      If you liked this challenge, you might enjoy some Ouija Poetry. There are a couple of those challenges around here where. I apologize for the fact that I just can’t bring myself to get organized on this blog. It is my recess, so I don’t work on it when I’m here.

      Good to hear from you Tad/Montana/Mancelt! Thanks for the great story above!

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