Minority Report


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This is looking toward the terrace beside the movie theatres at the mall. The rainbow stayed in the sky for about fifteen minutes, and then faded away. It appeared after a rain shower, and split the sky into light and dark, rain and sunshine. While it lasted, it was really quite spectacular.

A lot of people went out to look at it; but mostly they were just waiting for their movies to start– and after a few minutes, the only people left were those you see here. Only the two boys on the right are actually looking at the rainbow. They looked at it for quite a while. Maybe they didn’t have the money for the movie.

Or maybe they are still young enough to see the rainbow as a sign of hope; the shining image of a bright fantastic future to pursue as they grow older; the future which will recede before them year by year, and finally fade.

Like the rainbow. Gray grandmothers cluck disapprovingly at these fantasies. “Chasing rainbows” is a sign of irresponsibility in the young, time wasted in pursuit of things they cannot hold or keep. For the lolas, rainbows are only a sign that hard rain is over for awhile.

However that may be, rainbows are still beautiful–like sunsets and clouds and breaking waves. And like these things, they are democratic; you can’t buy them. They look no better from a Mercedes Benz than they do from a fisherman’s hut by the beach.

Still, when the rainbow fades, it’s better to have the Mercedes. Rainbows are ephemeral. The world changes around them while they shine, But
they can’t be predicted, and they never last for long.

This particular rainbow is seen through the cold glass windows and aluminum frames of a modern commercial mall, a huge heavy structure of concrete and steel and tile, dedicated to selling various kinds of things and services for cash.

But not totally dedicated. For example, the terrace these boys are standing on is not strictly necessary for sales; it’s just a graceful gesture by the architect toward the view outside the blank walls. And the rainbow has modified and brightened that view for a moment.

It has attracted the attention of these two boys, and focused their feelings a little beyond expensive objects of desire. In everything that surrounds them, it’s the only thing that’s not for sale.

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