So it has been a while since I last posted anything and figured what better way to get those creative juices flowing than with a thought-provoking question. I am opening this question up to anybody who feels like answering it. I am going to ask the question and then give my own personal response but I’d ask that you respond with your own answer before reading mine. I wouldn’t want your answer to be any way influenced by my own. There are of course no wrong answers; this is just a little bit of fun to see where everyone’s mind goes. Let us begin!
Imagine for a moment that you are visited by some multidimensional being: it can be a “God” or an alien or whatever entity you interpret it to be but when it contacts you the message you receive is very straightforward. You have been selected as a “participant” in an experiment where you will get to travel in time to whichever moment you choose. There are two options: you can either travel backwards along your own timeline in which case you will be the same age you were back then but with the mind of your current self (memories, intelligence, etc) or you can go out-with your own timeline either into the past or into the future in which case you will be in the body that you’re in when you leave.
There are however some rules: The first rule is that if you are travelling within your own timeline then you cannot take any technology back with you. You can take a single notebook back with you that contains whatever information you care to have with you. If you are travelling out-with your own timeline then you can take technology back with you, as much as you can fit in a bag but obviously you will be limited to how it can be used in whatever time period you choose. The second rule is that once you’ve traveled to your destination, you’re stuck there. You don’t get a redo or an option to travel back to the present. Wherever you choose to go, you then have to live your life from that moment onward until the day you die. The final rule (which is really a piece of information rather than a rule) is that there are no paradoxes so you can change whatever you want. If you decide to travel back in time to kill your great grandfather, then you won’t cease to exist. You can do whatever you like without there being any impact on your existence. The only real issue is that you’re stuck in that time to deal with whatever consequences there are. Just remember that you have no idea how each decision will alter the world around you (think of the butterflies!) so choose wisely!
Where do you go? What do you do? Go!
Here is my answer…be warned, I’m going to go into far too much detail with this but I enjoy thinking about scenarios such as this so hey ho!
So I would travel back along my own timeline to the age of 15 or 16. I would do everything pretty much the same with the only differences being that I’d try a little bit harder in school. The real reason would be so that I could compete in judo again but actually develop my “career” further rather than giving up. Up until the age of 18 I wouldn’t change anything drastically. I would however take a very full notebook back with me. This notebook would give me a very descriptive list of events that I know would happen between then and now, as well as a complete list of bets that would cover as many possible outcomes in order to give me plenty of options. This may seem very typical but I do have plans for this information. At the age of 18 I would go to university to do the exact same course I did and I’d befriend the same people and live the same life. During my 4 years at university I would use my handy little notebook to place incredibly “risky” bets with very high returns, I’d get involved in the stock market and buy shares with the knowledge of exactly when to sell, I’d buy lottery tickets that would give me back not millions but a few thousand every now and again. You might imagine that this would be for selfish reasons but actually, I’d have much bigger plans for this money than simply being able to afford a big house or a fancy car.
After the first year, I’d easily be a millionaire and at this point my real plan would come into play: across the UK I’d have partners who would place the same high bets with as many bookies as possible. These bets would be done online as well as in person. The purpose of this would be to drain the betting industry of as much money as possible. By the final year, when I’d acquired unimaginable wealth I would find a way to leak future outcomes of bets so that bookies had absolutely no reason to accept bets because people would know the outcomes. I mean sure, it would take a little time to build up a level of trust but eventually nobody would bet on the losing outcome. It might look a bit suspicious that I’d know those outcomes so I’d remain anonymous but I’d also suggest in my leaks that it was in fact the sporting industry that had rigged outcomes in their favour as a partnership with the betting industry. With a few years left until the present, I would open businesses that I knew would succeed (I’d have details of all this in my notebook) mostly within the alcohol industry (which is important to my plan later on. The main reason I’d move onto businesses is because with every bet I won or shares that I sold, there is a chance that I could change events so that my information becomes useless and inaccurate. The bets themselves would be less likely to change until I started sharing my knowledge of them but the stock market would be a different story. Public transport is an area I’d invest heavily in. I know from personal experience that the bus services in Scotland are awful and I’d get an unbelievable amount of satisfaction to replace the current services with a more reliable one. This wouldn’t make me much money because it would be an almost profit-free company, with the main purpose being providing a service to the people of Scotland. Any net profits would go back into the company or to the workers. I’d also start supporting the SNP (Scottish National Party) to try and help them win Scottish Independence. While all of this is going on I’d buy up land in Scotland (large, empty spaces) and start building a town/community there. Here, I would offer homeless accommodation to those who needed it. These people would work in my town in exchange for accommodation and would still get paid so they could leave whenever they wanted. My town would already be completely green and rely only on natural resources (more details that I’d have contained in my notebook). This town would take time to build and hopefully by this stage Scotland would have successfully become independent (an outcome which unfortunately did not take place the first time around). This would move me onto the next phase of my plan: drug legalisation.
The first step would be lobbying for weed legalisation with the main plan to have Scotland as a hub for its own weed. The biggest opposition to this plan would have been Westminster with its coke-snorting brats running the show but now that Scotland is independent, we wouldn’t have to get any ideas past them. With alcohol being a major problem in Scotland (both in terms of health and anti-social behaviour) weed would offer a calmer alternative and would hopefully bring the alcohol problem down a level or two. I’d be first in the door and would open up not only warehouses to grow weed but also shops to sell it, cafes, hotels, restaurants, retro arcades, weed tastings…pretty much everything you can imagine. The hub of all this would be my town which would be slowly expanding. Anyone who wanted somewhere to live could come, learn skills (courses which I would pay for) and then contribute to the expansion of my town. I would also begin buying new locations and starting the same idea from scratch, the idea being that no homeless person needed to be homeless in Scotland because there would always be somewhere for them to work and live. My only condition would be that anyone with issues (whether it be alcoholism, drug addiction, anger management etc) sought help through my organisation and tried to alter their behaviour. None of the shops in my towns would sell alcohol or tobacco but weed would be readily available. I would also have information centres where lectures and seminars would be given regarding other drugs as well as drug habits. This would be to ready people for the next phase of my plan. It would take a few years and by now I’d be in the “future” in relation to the point where this multidimensional being approached me but I would be trying to push Scotland (with hopes of moving it elsewhere) into a spiritual revolution.
Each of my towns would have centres built in them that would seemingly have no purpose or function. They would look a lot like hotels but far more therapeutic. The real reason I’d have them built is because sooner or later I’d have influenced Scottish politics in such a way that legalising drugs would be the next step and once again, I’d have my foot in the door long before anyone else. My centres would offer experiences with drugs in a safe and friendly environment. We would have shaman from the Amazon flown in to administer ayahuasca treatments in a spiritual and ritualistic environment, we’d have guides for mushroom or LSD trips, we’ve have soundproofed rooms where DMT trips could take place comfortably and undisturbed. Not to mention that we’d have meditation centres for those who wished to experience a more spiritual side of MDMA…as well as clubs for those who preferred the party side of things. These centres would be a safe haven for drug users and would reduce any unnecessary deaths that could occur from unsafe environments or overindulgence of the drugs themselves. It would go beyond taking the drug: there would be preparation time beforehand that for certain drugs would include diets, hydration, meditation, exercise or simply relaxation. There would be constant assistance for anyone who needed it or group care for those wishing to share the experience with friends or family. We would also offer therapy sessions with drugs. PTSD in soldiers has shown to be significantly reduced when the therapy session is accompanied with MDMA, LSD has been shown to work as a treatment for alcoholism, ayahuasca can lead people on spiritual journeys to solve unresolved issues. So there would be the entertainment side of things but there would also be the spiritual side which I hope would lead people down a more human path than what we are currently on.
With my investment in the alcohol, tobacco and weed industries, I’d begin to shut down distilleries of cheaper and more harmful alcohol. I’d do what I could to halt tobacco imports by doing whatever I could to increase the price as high as I possibly could. At the same time I would advertise my treatments of alcohol dependency and nicotine addictions. My plan would be to get rid of both as much as possible in Scotland. I’d continue to buy as much land as I could and I’d work on building an observatory with the most powerful telescope in the UK. This would be the focal point of my organisations next endeavour: space. Space travel isn’t something I’d aim to do but humanity (in my opinion) needs to find that child-like feeling of staring at the stars and just thinking “wow”. People could come from far and wide to camp under the stars in dark sports across the country that have minimal light pollution. Here we would have festivals that start of a stoners gazing into the nights sky and end with bonfires, singing and dancing, just bonding as a species.
A bit far-fetched? Perhaps…but it’s nothing more than a fantasy so I figure I’m allowed a little bit of wiggle room. I could go into so much more detail of every tiny step and where this would lead or that would lead but I don’t want to bore anyone who takes the time to read this.