No, this is not going to be about how that fabled 123 year old trickster is duping us all. Instead it is about a recent conversation a friend and I had. Both us being Bill Murray fans and both of us being fans of the wildly fantastic film, “Groundhog Day”, 2 seemingly simple questions came up. If you were stuck in that situation of the repeating day, what would you do? Secondly, what would it take for this Möbius strip to stop?
Taking no time to answer, as if he’d already put heavy consideration into this one, my friend had an immediate response to the first question. With his time he would do one of two things:
a.) Spend his time researching and learning as much as possible. A noble stance and surely beneficial should time pick back up again.
b.) Spend his time visiting a local tavern and try to romance ever last person there that day/night.
He was also quick to point out that time could even be split up during the course of the day making it possible to achieve both goals. I’m sure if both were met he’d then use his superior to intellect to find the best way to consistently make you feel bad for not meeting Julie, Mrs. Rover and Thad from the bar that night. Another friend had only one certain answer: They would learn to break dance. That’s all.
It’s been a while since the discussion and I still can’t figure out what I’d do with my time. Would I spend my time with piano lessons just so I could intentionally make the same “piano mover” joke that Bill Murray makes in the film? Yes. Of course I would. Maybe after I’d even get a job working at the dueling pianos bar on the side. Once time picks back up I will only play Harry Belafonte’s “Jump in the Line” every single night. Making cartoons would be a great way to spend the time but there is the grand fear that at the start of the next day I will lose every one that I make. Every day I’d wake to a moment of frenzy where I frantically sought out the cartoons I’d made of Walter Matthau as a cat named Walter Meowtthau. There would be the option of the academic route like my friend but honestly, it’d probably take me a few weeks of the same to finally force myself to go that route.
Maybe that’s it. Maybe the only way I’d get out of the repeating day is if I finally buckle down and start learning. Then eventually I’ll get myself back in school studying the obvious: The science behind why Harry Belafonte makes us all want to dance so bad.
Ladies and gentlemen, I have for you today: a new hypothetical. The angles are still being worked out completely but it’s come along enough to share. This question tackles the age old debate of art or literature. Well, in the sense of which would you rather be trapped in. Now I’m not even going to get into that ridiculous film with John Ritter, Stay Tuned. That movie has nothing to do with this debate so you Eugene Levy-ites just need to drop it now.
Here’s the question, would you rather be trapped in a painting or in a book? Certainly there is a painting or a book out there that is quite cherished for all of us. Perhaps your a more visual person so immediately your going to think up a painting. Or maybe you have some librarian genes in you and list of top 5 books you want to be trapped in are springing to mind. The big part of this debate are the catches. Yes, it’s not cut and dry. So we’ll jump into the things that will make you really think about which side you’re leaning towards.
Books – Now let’s say you are trapped in a book. The major thing here is how well your favorite book describes things. Anything intentionally left vague or only partially described will appear that way to you. Does your favorite book describe no restaurants or grocers? Than where or what are you going to eat? Never got a real mental picture of what that side character looked like? I’d recommend not hanging out with them because that could be nightmare inducing. Say they point out a door on a building but never tell you whats on the other side. Sit there yanking on that door for 2 hours if you like but you probably won’t be making it in.
The other important part of this is that while you can interact with things around you, there isn’t going to be the option to sway the plot. That technically would be rewriting the book which doesn’t seem to be a possibility. It’s more about drinking in what’s going on and seeing it right up close and personal.
Paintings – Paintings get tricky. If it’s a single room painting then you are probably just going to be hanging out in that room. So if you love Vermeer than I hope you really want to stare at nothing else than that girl with the earring for quite some time. That might get awkward fast. Just like books too, you won’t be able to go around changing or adding things. What would be interesting to note about the painting worlds is the fact that it is how it appears. So end up in a painting with all angles displayed oddly, that’s how it is. Pop into a Egon Schele piece and everybody will have super long limbs. Hang out in Picasso and well, I think you get the idea. (Sorry, I’m a bit biased here because I’d probably go the painting route)
So go forth folks, and discuss amongst yourselves. Maybe this will get you thinking right away or maybe it’ll be something that lays dormant until next week. Hopefully it’s sooner because otherwise the idea might get stuck like “Everybody’s working for the weekend” and you wouldn’t want that.
Boing, boing! Goes the diving board as you dive head first into a pool of <insert your favorite food here>. Question is: What happens once you hit food?
Does hell have any temptation sweeter than the mashed potato?
This question sprung from a conversation around what would be the best thing (or most comfortable) to dive into a pool of. Of course when faced with this question a mind could wander to food. It’s soft, chewy and there’s a good chance your favorite might be something that you could swim in. On the other hand, I think food presents some dangers and horrendous ways to go. Think about it, there is probably something terrible that will happen after you dive in your chocolate river or swim in cream of mushroom soup.
The first item discussed which has definitely become an argument amongst many friends is Jello. Here is my thought process on this: You are going to die. In my mind, once you dive into this jello pool, your form is going to cause you slice right through. Okay, fine, now your in the pool and angled. Then this sticky jello holds you and forms around you, encasing you in jello. At this point your lungs and nose and mouth are full of red, orange, or yellow. Your choice. Perhaps you might be able to wiggle and in that scenario you might be able to avoid Bill Cosby’s death trap.The one that would get me? You guessed it. Mashed Potatoes. I fear for my life that something about the starch or consistency of those devilishly good potatoes would prevent me from swimming. It would be like getting pulled under by the tide or consumed by quicksand. Down you’d go to the bottom of the vat. I know what your thinking, oh just eat your way out. People, let’s get serious. Your not going to eat your way out of a swimming pool sized tub of mashed potatoes. In a recent discussion of this dilemma, the idea was thrown out about belly flopping into it. This might work but you’d still have to get out. Perhaps a person with a giant pool skimmer could get me out, but I wouldn’t be diving which would go against the rules. So today, as you eat your lunch, ponder this. What would you dive into? And would you survive?
Hypothetical questions are one of my favorite conversation makers. There is one I came up with which has now become my favorite to ask anyone and today I share this one with you. Hopefully you take this one to heart, give it some thought, and maybe even share the idea among your friends. So here’s the question:
Would you rather live in an air city…
A modern city atop a floating chunk of Earth.
…or in an underwater, bottom of the sea dome city?
Put this deep underwater at the floor of the sea and it’s dome city.
I’ve discussed the idea of air city/dome city (ac/dc) with many people and had many interesting conversations. Personally, I’ve flushed out my ideas about the set up of each of these so should you start asking people about this you might want to completely develop the picture in your mind as well. Air city to me is a giant modern city floating in the sky. I don’t imagine it as being still but rather slowly drifting around the globe. It would be easy to come and go, given the fact you could build a small landing strip for planes. There could even be a hot air balloon for surface world to air city travels. Some sort of fence would probably be installed around the city but really probably nothing larger than a small picket fence. In the middle of the fence would be a break for the plank that people staging coups against air city would be forced to walk.
Dome city is a whole different tale though. Deep under the sea would be a series of small living domes connected by hallways covered by a gigantic dome. They would be lighted, you wouldn’t have to live in the darkness of the sea. You travel dome to dome by walking the hallways or the special way. This is the best part of it. Each dome would have a room with a small pool in which would be a garage door that leads out into the main dome. In this room would be little underwater scooters you ride out and travel dome to dome in. There could also be an elevator to the surface or my favorite, an air chute that could shoot you up and you could parachute back down to land. The chute does scare me a little because I imagine these dome city bastards doing something evil like equipping robotic legs to sharks and shooting them at people on the service. Sick people, I tell you.
Terror of the sea, terror of the land.
Once, I presented this conversation to a couple friends. Both quickly dismissed the idea as ludicrous. When one friend finally started weighing the pros and cons he did so only by what your means of demise would be in each location. He pointed out that in dome city, if the domes were to crack the pressure would grow so immense your head would explode but also pointed out that it would happen quite fast. In air city, your demise would probably be the city coming crashing down. He said he would live in dome city because he wouldn’t want to be stuck on a chunk of earth plummeting down to your end in a slow manner. There might be looting which could be fun but it would take a while. I think it’s ridiculous to focus on that but it is another angle.
So present this topic to your friends, discuss it at great lengths because it’s fun to see what people jump to first or what crazy ideas they come up with. But don’t forget to first ask yourself, which place would you live: air city or dome city?