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September 8, 2011 § Leave a comment
“If I had a time machine…” Sounds more like the topic of a lunchtable conversation held by middle school boys than the subject of an assignment for a college writing seminar . Since it’s both, however, I guess it’s fortunate that I was one such middle school boy.
Naturally the first thing that comes to mind for most kids is going back in time to use recently acquired knowledge for personal gain: looking up winning lottery numbers and playing them in the past, investing in Nintendo just before Pokemon became popular, retaking an exam, (preventing the filming of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,) etc. Then there are those who would venture into the future, seeking answers to those important questions. Will there ever be flying cars? Will people commute between lofty platforms in the sky? (The Jetsons) Will machines ever enslave humans in a virtual world to use their bodies as an alternative energy source?
My point is that almost nobody thinks of focusing on the present. Think of a time machine as a reset button or an escape pod and the present can be a much more interesting place than either the future or the past. You can do anything that social norms would ordinarily prevent you from doing. Streak across campus nude, steal from the tip jar, ask out that girl who’s way out of your league, or do them all at the same time! These things suddenly become plausible when the consequences disappear. Hell, eat a baby and blame Jonathan Swift. Do anything as sinister and/or taboo as your heart desires and then proceed to hop into your 4th-dimension getaway car.
Think about it like this…
It could be raw.