Wednesday, April 28, 2010

to travel into the PAST or into the FUTURE?

I have studied and received college degrees in both anthropology and history, so I'm supposed to say the Past, right?

Well, partly, yes.

There are things in the Past that would be undeniably cool to see--the first Model T driving down the road, the Wright Brothers flight, the creation of the lead pencil, the painting of the Sistine Chapel, the first episode of "Moonlighting!"

But, I've always been captivated by the FUTURE. (As I think I've noted in some digital space before, I'm the kid that spend summer afternoons with nothing but a wooden picnic table, a folding camp chair, and my imagination as I piloted the Millenium Falcon through asteroid fields and past Darth Vader's laser cannon bursts.)

So . . . I think I would pick traveling into the FUTURE!

In that way I could:

a.) find out how LOST ends before anyone else! (My current theory is that the last six years of the "Island" is simply a dream being had by one of the DHARMA polar bears held in captivity at the Hydra Station.

b.) learn what the marginal tax rate increase will be in fiscal year 2012!

c.) Get an iPad . . . WITH FLASH capabilities! (Oh . . . wait, we're talking about the FUTURE here, not alternate realities.)

d.) fuel my DeLorean time machine with banana peels and the last swallows of a Diet Pepsi + the aluminum in the can.

e.) and all sorts of other fun things.

BUT . . . there is a problem with traveling to the FUTURE.

The Past is (mostly) a known quantity. It would be exciting to be a fly on the wall as Julius Caesar is brutally knifed to death in the Roman Senate. It would be great to watch Thomas Edison create the light bulb. But there are all things that are not mysteries. I would just get to see them with my own eyes.

The FUTURE is unknown. And perhaps by traveling into the FUTURE, I would find that it is one of those Blade Runner-esque dystopic futures that are nothing but a big fat bummer. I would want to FUTURE to be something sleek and cool, kind of like the GM World of Tomorrow at the World's Fair or Disney World's TomorrowLand, full of monorails, chicks in unitards, food pills. You know, a really far out gas.

But if the FUTURE turned out to be something like "12 Monkeys" where everyone lives underground because evil David Morse destroyed the world with the Ebola virus . . . well, that would not be much fun at all.

So, the Past is the safer bet.

But I'm gonna roll the dice and hold out for a better FUTURE.

Anyway, that's my answer.

Thanks for asking.

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