Ali was talking fast but somehow still managing to shove hunks of fried, sugar dusted dough into his mouth. When he intended to breathe, Caleb had no idea.
“Can you fucking believe it, man? I mean, aliens making contact. Like, for real. And not coming to blow us up or turn us into chicken nuggets or any of that shit. They just want to, like, do business or whatever and humans get to, like, skip a thousand years of bullshit. I mean, holy shit, right?”
Caleb sipped his coffee and let Ali continue to rant between bites. Finally, when the last of the fried dough was gone, Ali paused, breathed, and said, “Fuck,” over and over like it was the most sublime of mantras.
“You know,” said Caleb when he calculated enough time for reflection had passed, “it’s not really going to be that big of a deal.”
“Of course. Yeah. I– wait, what?” Ali looked at once incredulous and something akin to angry. “How is it possibly ‘not going to be that big of a deal,’” he added in his ‘this is Caleb being Caleb’ voice.
Caleb shrugged. “Look, it’s going to be big when people read about it in a hundred years. And it’s probably going to be big for people that live in third world countries or totalitarian states. But they are buying water from Europa and paying for it with technology we won’t even be able to use for decades, let alone master. Sure, some rich assholes will get richer selling us alien iPhones but nothing is actually going to change in our day to day lives.”
“Jesus Christ,” said Ali, “you really are an asshole.”