Jimmy Mok lives in the Golden Day Sunset Home, in a powered wheelchair. Most of his enjoyment comes from watching old television reruns and movies, but this futuristic facility can be brutal. When the residents rebel and take over, they face hostile police action and Jimmy has to choose his own future between the attack on the home and the assault on the Alamo in the movie he’s watching.~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~Jimmy sat in his wheelchair in the main hallway, looking around. Every time he turned his head, the tail on his coonskin cap tickled his back. He liked that.He shifted Ol' Betsy on his lap. Everybody had gone their separate ways for the moment. He wasn't sure what to do."Here, Jimmy," said Pauline, walking out of a room down the hall. She was a short, brisk woman with curly gray hair. "Have you seen this?" She handed him a flyer from a stack she was carrying. "We just had these printed up in the main office.""Mm?" Jimmy accepted it, but he didn't feel up to reading the fine print."Oh. Here, I'll show you." She leaned over his chair, pointing to the paragraphs. "These are the demands we're going to make from Fleming. No more orderlies; they're to be replaced by nurses without prod rings. More flexibility in choosing our activities and changing our minds about them. We set our own visitation and curfew hours and we end the segregation of the men's and women's wings."Jimmy nodded. He liked that part about the prod rings."Dinner time," said Barbie, coming down the hall with a big smile. She wore one of the cafeteria staff aprons over her own dress. "You know, Pauline, those demands sound awfully familiar.""I noticed that," said Pauline. "I think we made a lot of these demands for the dormitories in Ann Arbor once a long time ago.""You were in Ann Arbor?" Barbie brushed a strand of white hair from her eyes with a dainty little finger. "I was in Berkeley for People's Park. We must be about the same age.""I guess so." Pauline looked back at her with an amused smile."Woodstock," Jimmy muttered, on impulse."What?" Pauline turned in surprise. "Were you at Woodstock?"A tall, stooped man carrying a big piece of posterboard. "Remember this?" He held it up.Jimmy squinted at it. It was a freshly stenciled red painting of a clenched fist.
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Sit-in at the Alamo
by William F. Wu
Artwork by Linda Cappel
Copyright @ 1992 – William F. Wu
Jimmy Mok fumbled with his left hand for his wheelchair controls, refusing to take his eyes from the three TV screens embedded in the wall in front of him. He didn't want to miss a second of his shows. The controls were still just a jumble of buttons to him, even after many years, but he could always get the chair to respond if he kept at the controls long enough.
The wheels rolled and shifted on a slick, spotless white floor. Golden Day Sunset Home did not tolerate accumulated dust and dirt. His wheels were as clean as the floor.
"Hey, Ceesco," he muttered. He got the chair positioned just right and then felt with his right hand to make sure the TV remote was still in his lap. It was.
On the screen to his left, the Cisco Kid was galloping down the road toward Jimmy's left under the opening credits in living color; in the middle, the Rifleman was stalking down a darkened black and white street to the right, about to pull off twelve fast shots in an irregular rhythm that Jimmy once could tap his fingers by to show he had memorized it. Nowadays, though, he couldn't keep up. The show on the right-hand screen wasn't familiar yet, but it was another western that stirred some vague sense of recognition in him.
Jimmy saved up all of his various privilege credits here at the Golden Day Sunset Home very carefully. He spent them all only to reserve these TV sets and his favorite tapes every chance he could. The orderlies were very strict here, so you had to follow the rules exactly.
He patted the coonskin cap on his head. The dangling tail tickled the back of his neck. His toy gun, a replica flintlock of Davy's Kentucky Long Rifle, Ol' Betsy, lay on the floor by his chair. He normally left the cap and gun in his room, but he took them out when he had reserved a Davy Crockett tape.
"Hey, Jimmy. You in here, Jimmy?"
Jimmy let his eyes close, trying to recognize the voice. It was his best friend, Moose. He opened his eyes again and looked the screens.
"Hi, Jimmy." Moose was a large fellow, no longer fat after the rigidly controlled diets at the Sunset Home, but big-boned. He walked with a slight stoop under the remains of curly white hair. "They're showing new movies on the 3-D screen again. Come on in and watch them with us."
"Shut up," Jimmy said mildly. "Davy's coming on." That was the third show, Davy Crockett. Of course. That was why he had brought his cap and gun down. It had come back to him all at once.
"Aw, shut up, yourself," said Moose. He shuffled over to Jimmy and looked at the screens. "What do you watch this old stuff for?"
"Don't remember it, huh?" Jimmy watched the Rifleman kid around with his son whatshisname on the middle screen.
"Of course I do," said Moose. "We call grew up on that stuff. But I'd rather watch 3-D. Come on over and watch with me."
3-D. Three-dee. Jimmy couldn't recall what that was right off. Something about red and blue.
"Naw," said Jimmy. He looked over at Davy. It looked like trouble with Red Sticks, the chief.
"Your pass, please," said a firm voice.
Jimmy looked back at Cisco. He was talking to some old geezer in a beard. Jimmy thought of Gabby Hayes, then, but that wasn't Gabby. He would recognize Gabby.
"Gabby's with Roy," Jimmy whispered to himself.
"I just came in for a second," Moose muttered.
The orderly quickly stepped around Moose to block his view of the screens. Jimmy leaned to his left in order to see around the orderly. The orderlies' names were stitched on their white uniforms with the maroon trim, but he could never tell them apart. Besides, they all acted the same. They ran the place.
"Back to your assigned activity," said the orderly. "Show me your wrist."
Moose held his right wrist upward. His dick-tracy read "Period 6: Vid 1."
"You're in Video 2," said the orderly. "One demerit. That's not bad. Come on, I'll take you back to Video 1." He took Moose’s elbow to steer him toward the door.
"I was just talking to Jimmy," Moose muttered sourly. He was reluctantly leaning against the pressure on his arm.
On Jimmy's left, Cisco was now galloping across an open expanse of desert, a confident and determined look on his face.
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