Tom Ross
3 min readDec 23, 2022


"It is liberating and scary as shit when you realize you are the writer and the protagonist in your own story. And it's not because of the responsibility. When you begin watching yourself and your choices from the third person, you realize very quickly that one needs to be really interesting to be justifiably paranoid."

US6 Book II: The Nūn of Babylon
Ch. 27 Eliot’s Afraid of Tigers

That quote comes to mind whenever I feel like I'm important or get into that space of thinking the government or some nefarious cabal is after me because it reminds me how unimportant and unthreatening I am. No clandestine agency would spend the money and man-hours to monitor me. It makes my day less exciting and is quite humbling but it allows me to get on with the tasks that matter to my family.

What I'm doing is trying to crack my own code. That code I tend to project into other people. I honestly believe that I'm a Non-Character Player (NPC) in this Simulation and by realizing that makes me feel important. Not as important as an actual Player but perhaps my Avatar is that one that is supposed to do this for those Players that want to be like Neo or Free Guy.

This Earth/Human Experience Simulation must get boring so now there are folks that want to play this version of it. Perhaps this is a new level to play before the Simulation shuts down?

I had the honor of knowing and interviewing Robert Anton Wilson in the 90's. Years later I uploaded that interview to Revver, an early rival of YouTube. At that time there was a limit to the length and file size of the videos uploaded so I divided the 30 minute conversation into three parts. I found logical breaks in the conversation to cut it into three parts.

As soon as I posted those, the comments section was immediately flooded with conspiracies about the minutes and seconds chosen to make those cuts. They assumed there was a group of masterminds who knew exactly what timecode to choose and that those numbers could be numerologically deciphered to get a secret message. Some of their explanations and deciphers were so convincing, I began to wonder myself.

The point of this story is that our brains are designed to find patterns and this Universe, whether it's simulated or not is driven by mathematical patterns. So when a guy decides to find a break in a conversation to edit an interview so it fits the constraints of a video site completely at random, human pattern seeking applies meaning to the random math.

Frankly, I was flattered that viewers thought I was capable of encoding a secret message via numerological codes as part of some masterminded agenda but in the end, being on that side of a conspiracy theory only further convinced me about the arithmetic of our conscious experience.