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December 22, 2008

If you could go back to any time anywhere, where would you go and why?

Sukeile asked me that awesome question in a comment on deviantArt, and I had so much fun coming up with an answer that I decided to post it here, as well.

Let me say, first of all, that I'd much rather go forward in time, than back. I'm more curious about what's coming, than what went by.
Even so, the more I think about it, the more I find things I'd really like to witness in the past.
The Big Bang, for one --as you can see, I'm starting at the very beginning-- or even what existed before the Big Bang (not sure how I'd survive, though). There's so much of science I could prove or disprove by going back in time! I'd like to see some dinosaurs and prehistoric men (and, thus, corrobate the theory of evolution and whether dinosaurs had feathers), maybe check out what Jesus was like. Be a pirate on the Spanish Main (although that's probably more fun in the movies). Find out how Machu Pichu, the Stonehedge, the Pyramids and the Parthenon were built. Witness the Byzantine Empire, the Renaissance, the Industrial Revolution and the turn of the century (or, simply put, every major event in human history). Meet Socrates, DaVinci, Alexander the Great, Christopher Columbus, Napoleon, Abraham Lincoln, Oscar Wilde and (moving closer to today) Carl Barks, Groucho Marx, Douglas Adams and Mitch Hedberg (though I'm not really sure what I'd say to them "Hey, there, I'm from the future!"). It would be like a super-enhanced museum experience.
Then, there's the temptation to influence past events. Save Anastasia Romanof (I'm not sure why that's the first thing that came to mind), help the Aztecs against Cortez, stop Hitler (see Red Alert) or the A-bombs, help Al Gore against Bush (as soon as I find out how...).
Or maybe just minor events. Go back to my younger self and teach him stuff I wish I had known back then (like how to talk to girls). Not sure I'd listen to myself, though...
The possibilities are endless! Even just introducing modern technology to people from the past would be fun, or I could just mess around with their heads...

To tell you the truth, I would probably try my best not to influence past events, for fear of tearing the time-space continuum, but still, what an awesome question...!

What would you do if you could go back to any time anywhere? I'm certain there's great ideas I missed.


Mel said...

So, let me dwell on this for a minute... "Hey, there, I'm from the future!" isn't good enough for you?!?!?!

Dimitrios Doukoglou said...

It's less "What am I going to tell them?" and more "What I'm going to ask them?"

djimDjim said...

You don't have to travel back in time to experience the Big Bang! It's gonna happen on 9/2/2009!!!

Sukeile said...

I would so love to meet DaVinci as well, he was pure genius.

Oh! Astrid Lindgren, John Bauer and Karl larsson were some of the greatest Swedish "art heros" that I also want to speak with.

And, like you said, witness important events, take a peek into the future, go and have adventures!

I found it funny that when I thought about time travel just now I didn't think "If I could..." I thought "When I do!"

How odd :D

Dimitrios Doukoglou said...

@djimDjim: Shameless self-promotion...

@Sukeile: I saw a really great video called Street Corner Science a few weeks ago, were people ask a Nobel Laureate questions about (surprise!) science.
One of them says "do you think that people can go back in time?" and Dr. Leon Lederman's answer is that "the most powerful argument is 'if it were possible to go backwards in time, why wouldn't we have been already visited by people from the future?'"

... So that sucks :(

Sukeile said...

That doesn't prove it's impossible!
You might still be able to go back in time, but as a ghost unable to touch anything or be seen but experience things as if you were actually there :D