Saturday, April 16, 2011

If only we knew

When I was growing up, I would always fantasize about time travel and what I could do if I knew the future. Usually I would want to be a fly on the wall at some historic event, or assassinate a dictator... but as Reaganomics came along, it was explained to me that I should play every move of the stock market to become infinitely rich.

Of course all this is complicated by, say, the paradox caused by meeting myself or changing the course of history. However, nature doesn't know how much people know about it, nor does it care. So it would be OK for the time traveller (above) to go and find out the weather, right?

When forecasting, sometimes the suspense of not knowing was almost too much to bear. "Just once" I thought "I want to know how this will all turn out". I wanted to cheat, to know what nature's cards were, to know how to bet. Perhaps I'd have to sell my soul in an infernal pact but would it be worth it?

The worst part of it all is that so many people are watching rivers and the weather in realtime, it's hard to know who knows what they're talking about. Even if I knew the answer I couldn't explain why I knew... nobody would believe me. I'd say what will happen, it'll happen and they'll think it was a lucky guess.

I met many people who were confident in themselves but, again, nature doesn't care and humiliation is never far off. Seems like knowing the future for sure would be more of a curse than a blessing.

If you could go to the future and know one thing, what would it be? And how would you convince others that you had the right answer?

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