I’ve always admired your imaginative range when it comes to the mysteries our world still has failed to puzzle out, brother. And chances are that I will not be capable of adding any significant new findings to the debates, given that I am writing these lines over a Toffee Nut Latte with extra sprinkles – and I think I taste some kerosene as well – from the top floor of the uni library.
However, what I can do in my lunch break here is repeat to you my grasp of the issue of time travel so far: And that is that – while I think we as a civilization will launch out awesome shit in the future such as genuinely edible underwear and the Police Academy Revival – the only thing I rule out at this point is time travel. So sorry, brother, I do not have a machine that empowers you to wash you clean of all the bad stuff that shaped you in the first place.
And no offense, but I can’t promise you either if I wouldn’t smash the thing to pieces with a sledgehammer in case I ever came across it. The reason is the same I have brought forth on the issue of beaming, if you recall: It takes away our deepest humanity. Visiting a friend abroad is so amazing since the mere arrival on the doorstep represents the effort, the devotion and appreciation of the connection. Take that away and our friends from Wisconsin or Hawaii might soon pop in for a cold one at half-time and ask you what’s wrong and why you don’t come around no more the last few weeks.
As with time travel, I don’t want that. I don’t want us to become machines, who always aim for the cleanest sheet and optimization on any issue. I love an unintended dead note on a record, knowing it was a guy that just fucked up at that point and decided to leave it on there anyways because, hey, it’s him and his track.
And what would become of my beloved sports? Could some bloke of the other side erase my memories of my emotional rollercoaster rides? Of how I spilled tears of desperation one year and of endless joy the next on the very same ground in front of a huge screen surrounded by 30.000 brothers in spirit? These moments on my knees between heaven and hell are engraved in my brain and identity and damn, that’s were they fucking belong. Plus: Almanach. Hello?
With good reason, I’d like to recommend you the famous speech of Charlie Chaplin at the end of ‘The Dictator’ on the issue. Also, these words couldn’t be more fitting in the current political mayhem, which I will not elaborate on, mostly because I do not give too much about it and have my own struggle to fight here.
And here, you have given the answer – if somewhat subtle, as is your nature – to your question as well already: Self-relfection is key in this manner and far more than just a starting point. We all fuck up, we all have our flaws, but isn’t how we perceive and deal with them who we are?
Speaking for myself, the power of art can’t be exaggerated. Literature and music, meditation is great as well. Simply re-thinking my days helps me to shape them towards a better life. Here an example, so you guys get an idea of what I mean: As a passionate Game of Thrones fan, I do not face the toughest academical challenge of my life at the moment – I picture myself fighting the Mountain in the pit.
I make a game of it. I step outside myself and shoot my own movie. I picture that crush of mine – which I asked for a coffee just yesterday thanks to your advice – watching me through candid camera. I operate undercover as an agent on a top secret mission.
Also, my diary always helps seeing things in a new light and seeing the bigger picture. Quite different to yourself, not a few beer, but a computer crash here at the Uni robbed me of backups of ten hours of work just last week. I’m telling you: That guy has some uppercut and left me trembling and timid in the dirt.
But I don’t like that image a bit. That’s not the ending I have in my script here. It’s the scene where you want to create suspense for the insane comeback that is to follow. So like yourself, I went to the only direction there is – ever forward – and gave him hell of a fight the following days.
As you pointed out so cunningly, we need not be scared of failure but should instead encourage in seeking these challenges and throwbacks to mirror back on ourselfs and fail better.
A couple of weeks ago, I had to write a paper about FDR and the New Deal. Here, I came across his famous quote regarding the severest economic crisis during the time: ‘The only thing we have to fear is fear itself’. To me, this rounds the issue up quite nicely and to you it probably rings a bell given your knowledge of the (unaltered) historic timeline so far.
Speaking of which, the bell just rang here as well and I need to go back in the ring. But with cameras in position – and possibly cute cheerleaders on the ranks – , I feel me wiping that grimly smile from his face with some jabs just sounds like some decent Sunday afternoon entertainment.