Don’t Break the Number One Rule

Matt and I went out to eat for breakfast on Sunday morning.  On the drive home, I started to comment on the work that some local/state/federal agency has completed over the last several weeks.

me:  Wow, they have really trimmed the trees way back from the power lines.

Matt:  Well, I guess they want to make sure that limbs don’t fall on the lines in ice or snow storms.


me:  You know, if you were to go back in time, you would really miss seeing the power lines running down the side of the roads.  They are such a part of the landscape.

Matt:  Power lines didn’t exist back then, so no one would miss them.

me:  No, if you went back in the time before power lines, you would notice that they there gone and it would seem weird.

Matt:  No, it wouldn’t seem weird because you wouldn’t know that you were missing them.

me: (throwing him a incredulously look that he missed since he was driving) No, like if you got in a time machine from this time and went back in time like the movie, you would really notice that there weren’t any power lines.

Matt:  Yeah, that’s what you would be noticing.

me:  Well, you would.  Maybe not first thing.  But you would.

Matt:  Ok, so you and I go back in time and –

me:  Well, it wouldn’t be you and me.  It would be scientists and such.

Matt:  Why wouldn’t it be you and me?

me:  Why would it be you and me?

Matt:  Why wouldn’t it be you and me?

me:  Like a giant wormhole with the time-space continuum thingees is just going to open up for us?

Matt:  Yes.

me:  Don’t you think that will happen for someone that is like actually working with wormholes and studying that stuff?

Matt:  Let’s just assume it’s us.

me:  Why would I go back?  I have nothing to offer the people of the past.  I’m not a scientist or a doctor.  I can’t offer the people of the past something that will make their lives better.

Matt:  That’s great.  Because you can’t break the number one rule which is that you can’t alter the future.

me:  That’s the number one rule?

Matt:  Yes.

me:  According to who?

Matt:  Everybody knows that.

me:  More number one than love thy neighbor?

Matt:  Well, you’re being silly.

And apparently I’m useless enough that I couldn’t alter the course of the future.  Even if I tried.