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Monday, January 6, 2014

Time Travel, yeah, it ain't so great.

Recently a pair of Physics professors at the Michigan Technical University began a search for time travelers.  Using the benefits of modern technology they started searching social media sites for references to events that had yet to occur.  Maybe a tweet about what a snappy dresser Pope Francis was, pre-coronation.  Or some facebook post about Comet ISON, before it was discovered.   Those were the kinds of events they wanted to be the focus of the search.  Unfortunately, they found no evidence of time travel.

Though, in fairness, certain technological limitations inherent in many social media sites are not conducive to searching for time travelers.  Facebook allows the backdating of status updates, for example, which might explain how Abe Lincoln thanked everyone for getting the much coveted five dollar gig on his wall, while he was still in office.  And Google Trends will only show the most popular search terms, and time travelers are probably a little nerdy, and would not factor in with the "cool" kids, and their searches.

Also, and this is one thing they did not take into account, time travel imposes strict embargoes on information.  Recently, we here at Life Explained invented a time travel device.  We connected our cell phone with the copier, ran 220 volts through it, and typed tomorrow into a text and sent it to ourselves.  It started shaking, and moving across the floor like it was trying to run away, and the phone played a ring tone that sounded like a funeral dirge.  The lights in the whole building flickered, and seemed to be sending an SOS, and for a brief second I think Elvis was in the building.  And then;  BAM, it was tomorrow.

Thinking quickly, we jumped ahead to the end of the Super Bowl, and checked the winner, then came back and called our bookie, but we could not place the bet.  "Hello, Bob, the bookie, we would like to bet $10,000 big ones on ________ to win the Super Bowl."  It was blanked out by silence, we couldn't say it, we couldn't whisper it, we couldn't scream it.  We tried to fax it to Bob, and he got everything but the team.  Handwriting, emails, smoke signals, tweets, nothing worked.  

It was so frustrating to have that knowledge, so maddening to be able to look ahead and see the future, to understand the consequences of our actions, and realize that the smallest decision can have a huge impact and not be able to turn it into a few bucks.   It was awful!

Really, about the only useful purpose we have found for time travel is to cruise ahead and see how that haircut would really look, it has saved some serious humiliation, and shame, possibly a couple of marriages.  But, you should definitely shave your head, and get that tattoo, you (will) look like great like that.