We had a little get-together the other night with a few friends, and I think some of the things that happened that night are worth mentioning. It was a hot summer night, just like every other night has been this year, here in Texas. It’s so hot that when my wife and I sit outside and just enjoy the cool night air after the kids are in bed, it’s actually still over 100 degrees. And we’re talking about after nine o’clock. But there is one good thing about it. At least we’re not in Oklahoma.
So Haycomet and Byronic came over and brought their tinycomet – who (and this is another story, but) installed Open Solaris on one of my print servers and re-allocated a slash 28 from my DHCP scope to serve as her science lab, then delved into some hard coding time, whereupon she ran all six of my computers at 98% CPU usage for over two hours grinding out application for her theory about relativistic dimensional vacillation. So in short, we spent a few hours sipping cognac in a fine 17th century hall surrounded by warpainted women in loincloths and pasties who thought we were Norse gods. Thanks, tinycomet!
So after a dinner that consisted of barbecue potato chips, beef jerky and Whoppers® Brand malted milk balls, we sat around on the SpacePatio telling old war stories and playing Beer Can Tetris. After Haycomet scored a perfect nine dropping a Natty Light can in the slot between a bottle of Blue Moon and a six-pack of Blackened Voodoo, a thought struck me. It hit me just behind the right temple, and for a time, I was unconscious. When I awoke though, I shared this thought with my company. And now, friends, I share it with you.
You remember the Time Traveler’s Convention they held at MIT in May of 2005? Yeah, the one Alan Guth himself attended – as a guest speaker! Dude that would have been pretty awesome to get to go. But yeah, they said you only really need one Time Traveler’s Convention. Because as long as people know about it and publicize it widely, people from all times in the future could go back to it as many times as they wanted. Now bear with me.
Let’s say you were born in the year 2100. You hear about this convention that happened 95 years previous. So you decide to pop in and check it out. Now, assuming you don’t make it obvious that you are indeed a time-traveler, no one would be the wiser. But what if you decided you had fun at the party? So next week, you go ahead and pop back again. Well, the problem is, your week-ago self is going to be hanging out already. So anyone who wanted to visit more than once would make it pretty obvious, because there would be identical triplets or quadruplets walking around. Make sense?
So it could very easily have turned into a big gigantic joke there when suddenly you have fifteen guys walking around who all look absolutely identical, wearing the same exact clothing and talking with the exact same voice. But it didn’t. So does that mean no time travelers showed up from the future? Not necessarily. And I’ll tell you why.
If I were to hear about a time traveler convention that I could very easily pop into and check out, the first question I have is this: would I? Basically, you would instantly be the most important and popular guy at the party. (Assuming they knew who you were. Which they would if it were me. I’d be like, “Hey bros, I’m from the muthafukkin fewcha! High fives! Now, where the bitches at? I want some ancient strange!”)
But if you don’t make yourself known as a time travla, it will go down in history as being a flop. Enter my next point: they say no one showed up from the future. What if half the people there were from the future? My point – which apparently I’m having trouble making clearly – is that since it’s now in our past and we all read about how it was kind of a bust, then why the hell would anyone in the future want to pop in and visit it?
So do you see what I’m saying? No one will show up from the future if it wasn’t a rip-roaring good time. And it won’t be a rip-roaring (what the hell does that mean, anyway?) good time if no one shows up from the future. So basically, they shot themselves in the feet by having this party and not making it just wildly awesome. It has to go down in history as being largely and insanely successful! That way the time-travelers will come, and make it awesomely successful!
Yeah, I know, it’s a catch-22. But if I would have thrown that party, I would have made sure a few people looked all futuristic and shit. Like foil shirts and circuit boards glued to their faces. You know, so it’s undeniable that they’re from the future. Because if you had a time machine and you heard about a weak ass party where they just wanted to hang out and see if anyone showed up… would you show up?
Well I hope I’ve made sense here. Time travelers would make it awesome – but it has to be awesome for them to show up… Circular reasoning? Meh. Anyway, I say we do this shit again. And we make it so well publicized that every circuit in the world is on it. Now MIT has policies about television cameras not being in the halls and stuff. Well, let’s have it somewhere else. Somewhere cool. Like the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium. Or Madison Square Garden. Somewhere bad ass! And let’s televise the shit out of it! Make people from the future want to come! Promise them that Jessica Simpson and Paris Hilton will be getting naked and making out in the middle of the cheese table. Offer free door prizes like time machines and shit from the future that we couldn’t possibly have – so that time travelers would have to bring it! Promise that one special guest will win a drawing and get to visit the future! Or feel Jessica Simpson’s boobs! You know. Something cool like that.
Obviously I don’t have the resources to publicize this event and make it successful. Otherwise I would offer to host it at the SpaceBar. Which would be another damn cool place to have it. Who wouldn’t think Time Travel and SpaceBar go hand-in-hand? But if we can get enough people interested in doing this again, and doing it right this time, we can really see some results. And trust me. We need someone to host it this time. Someone who knows how to party. And somehow, MIT students don’t seem to me like people who know how to party.
And now they’ve proven it. By ruining the past. Let’s not let them ruin our future too.