Monday, November 19, 2007

All I want for Christmas... a time machine. That's all... just one basic model, functional, reliable, user-friendly time machine. Sure, I'll take pretty if I can get it, but I don't really need the fuss of all that leather, brass, and crystal ornamentation, a la H. G. Wells. Simple is okay.

Time machine image courtesy of Danny Cardle, artist and creator of Visual Engineering

Forget for a moment, if you will, about asking if a time machine is plausible, or just plain crazy. Forget the fact that Santa can't possibly fit it into my stocking. Shoot, he probably can't even fit it into his sleigh.

I'm not really asking for much. It doesn't even have to go into the future: we'll leave exploration of that to genealogists and historians who will come later on. I just want to be able to travel purposefully and selectively into the past, as any historian dreams about.

Oh, the people and the sights I would see! The questions I would ask! The notes I would take! A time machine would provide hour after hour of useful entertainment. It's such a good idea for a present... so, well, educational.

For starters, I'd like to go back to about 1917 and meet my grandmother at just the time when she was tying the knot with Grampa. "Howdy-do," I'd say. "I'm your long, lost granddaughter. And by the way, lay off that cow's milk, will you please?"

If Grandma hadn't drunk cow's milk, she probably wouldn't have gotten T.B. If Grandma hadn't caught T.B., my mother wouldn't have been orphaned so young, and perhaps she wouldn't have been left with such a complex, and maybe (just maybe), I would have gotten yelled at a little less. I'm kidding of course. Mom's done a fine job, but I sure have missed the particular pampering of a grandmother all these years, not to mention the extra Christmas cookies and overnight stays.

All I want is one basic, easy-to-use time machine. I'll clean and oil it regularly, and make regular insurance payments... promise.


  1. Excellent idea! I'll put in a good word for you with the Genea-Santa. You have been good haven't you Chery? And if you get your time machine you will share with your friends, right? Cause I'd like to travel back in time with you. 1917 would be OK with me! Can I come too? Pretty please?

  2. Sure I'll share! The more the merrier, although I might have to opt for the "Time Tunnel" version instead, in order to make room. Remember that show from the 60s anyone, or am I dating only myself? ;)

  3. A time machine would be fantastic! We'd be able to collect so many more family stories and information for our research. Imagine the things you could ask your ancestors! It's on my wish list too.

  4. Chery:

    The money you could make just by selling rides on the time machine to your friends.

    It would be a dream come true for every family historian. All those primary source oral histories.

    The check for my ticket is in the mail. See you in line.


  5. Watch out, Disney... can "Geneaworld" be far behind? I'll be sure to tell all of my blogging friends when opening day arrives.

  6. Chery,

    I know you'd like a time machine, but you are already a time traveler.

    Genea-world sounds like a wonderful place. It is a wonder no one has thought of actually creating it, even without a time machine.