I remember it was in an anthology of the best American works of fiction or something similar. It may have been the best american nonrequired reading anthology. I read it in the last two years and I believe it was published in the last five, but am not positive about the latter. I include it here because the story is somewhat dystopian - the corporation has become a huge player in world affairs.

The main character is a young man who joins a design team creating a new brand and logo for a google-out-of-control like organization.

During the story the man is afflicted by a mysterious cold-like sickness supposedly cause by plants on the property. He gets medicine from a semi-sinister doctor at the company, which helps him. They tell him that the sickness is due to allergies, but we never get the full explanation.

The main character goes for a swim each day and sees a woman sitting by the pool that he lacks the courage to talk to. During his last swim, he looks up and she is no longer there. He wonders whether he imagined her entirely.

The design team is led by a man who is somewhat obsessed with primality. He leads the team to break in to the headquarters of their rivals in the final act of the comic.

The last scene is the main character looking at a bloody handprint after injuring himself during the break in. He decides that this will be the new logo of the corporation.

  • We're going to need a lot more details than that. Firstly is there anything about this comic that is specifically science fictional or fantastical? If not then I'm afraid it is not on-topic here. Secondly, take a look at this guide and see if you can edit in any more details.
    – Edlothiad
    Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 7:44
  • Thanks, tried to add more details. It was fairly dystopian (think "a future dominated by Google"), so I thought this might be the place to ask. If not, any suggestions for where I should ask? Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 19:02
  • Considering it's not got any close votes, I'd say you're safe here. Added some good details. A time period for when you read it would still be helpful
    – Edlothiad
    Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 21:30

1 Answer 1


The comic is "Million Year Boom" by Tom Kaczynski, as featured in "The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2009"!

In “Million Year Boom,” an ambitious young man takes a new job that will find him living on a corporate campus for several years. Hired as part of the new marketing team, he is less than impressed with the current company logo that looks like it was lifted out of a clip-art file. However, the company is stuffed with investor capital and the energy of start-up idealism is too much to resist. It’s not until he comes to see that the company’s goal is sort of crazy, that he hesitates. The allergy he’s developed from one of the company’s new species of plants is not a good sign either. But then again, when he thinks it over, a corporate return to the wild could be the sort of crazy that he’s always hungered for.

Source: comicsgrinder review

  • 1
    Hi. It'd be great if you could expand this answer a bit to explain how Million Year Boom matches the story described in the question. Commented Jan 28 at 2:08

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