They march in, one after the other, forming a line in military precision. Row after row of them, disappearing into the distance. They are taking over. I am powerless to stop them and unable to defeat their great numbers.
I decide to take drastic measures and find that I can prevent their entry, for a length of time. The strategy is simple. Don't open the gate. But gates are gates for a reason. They must be opened to allow traffic to flow from both directions and once opened... they all march in . Some of these invaders are very welcome. I've been waiting on them and am keen to entertain them. But in order to find them I have to scan every face, eagerly grabbing those friendly or intriguing ones and pulling them aside. Unconcerned, the others continue to enter, looking neither left or right. They settle, taking up permanent residence until they are either rehoused or face the firing squad!
I could commit mass murder, but they look at me with that hint of secrecy, or is it guile? There is a glance that suggests I should dance with them for a while, let them entertain me briefly and, uncertain, I lower my loaded gun. Part of my brain tells me I can live without them; the other part argues, 'But what if I need them one day?'
So I demand to see their entry papers. They can't just march in here without and invitation! How dare they? I'll show them who is boss. Unperturbed, they flash their credentials at me. Every paper has a familiar signature on the bottom - mine! So now it appears I have found the problem. It is I!
Self awareness births a brutal streak. I march to the back of the line and open fire. Ruthlessly I annihilate twenty at a time. Impassioned, my statistician records progress. 683, 663, 645, 632.
Oh, no. I hear myself promising to look at this one later, or telling that one to wait. I close my eyes and destroy fifty in one hit! I wait. Silence. Not a word of objection. Getting braver I try again. Fifty more and another fifty! Yay. 482. I'm on a roll. Bang, bang! 282
But again I feel uncertain. These residents are newer. What if I've missed something? What if I lose an opportunity? I start to scan faces and assign a few to temporary housing. I knock one here and there. I'm sure some of them have run up from the back of the line. Surely I've seen them before!
Tired, I check with the statistician. Only 200 left. I can manage two hundred. That's okay. I'll fix the rest tomorrow.
But the next day is busy and so my computer remains inert.
I just opened the gate and....oh, no! There are 375 emails in my inbox again!