Genie Wish #2-Immortality!

Second in a series.
The premise is that you’ve found and rubbed the right magic lamp, and a genie pops out and grants you 3 wishes. Your second wish is immortality, and the genie says that he’ll throw in perfect health because he likes you. How do you go about your life through the years without letting anybody know? What aspects in your life do you change?

Is this invulnerability style immortality or do I get taken to the brink of death but without the sweet release of shuffling off my (severely damaged) mortal coil?

I need to know before I start my crime fighting career. Or volcano diving.

I’d rather have this than the money, to be honest. But MY second wish (hell, my first wish) would be that I am given the power to change and heal anyone, including myself (my 2nd wish is the knowledge and wisdom of HOW to change or heal at a molecular level, with the 3rd wish being insight, or the ability to, at my will, look into a living being to see what’s wrong with them or see what it is I’m trying to change). That way I get to control living forever…and who I get to have live forever with me. I could also heal anyone of anything.

Not only could I do good and live essentially as long as I chose, but my fortune would be assured too, so I’d get it all anyway. :wink:

With the OPs wish though I think it would be a hollow wish if you could live forever because those you love would die around you, and eventually humans themselves would die out and you’d still be there, living on alone. That would suck.

No thanks, I’m out.

I’ve no desire for immortality. I can only imagine such as a punishment from some God or other, for some horrific sin.

(An extra year or five? Maybe, but even then I’d only take it if I can choose NOT to use it, when the time came.)

How are you supposed to be immortal when the sun engulfs the earth? Or when entropy finally causes the last star to burn out? Then what?

Nothing lasts forever so I think this wish is logically impossible.

I’m assuming with immortality that I’m going to stay the same age (hopefully a bit younger). For starters this looks like a pretty good idea. I could probably get by with about 20 years in any given location before people would really notice that not only am I aging really well, I’m not aging at all. Money would probably fairly quickly become no object if I’m smart enough to live frugally the first time around and build up a decent nest egg. But every 20 years I’d move to someplace new and sever contacts with my previous life. I’d likely have to create a new identity for the age that I am and I would “pass” the money from my old identity to the new. How I could do this without triggering some sort of IRS issue is beyond me so before long I’d probably find myself living in more and more remote areas of the world.

Losing loved ones every 20 years is going to suck and after a few go around’s I’d probably be done with the immortality thing. But nope, on and on I’ll live. I’ll be there to witness the downfall of civilization, and probably the rise and fall of countless new civilizations. I’ll be there to experience the extinction of mankind and will have nobody to talk to anymore. The shear loneliness will be crushing. I’ll be there when the sun gets too hot for life to exist on Earth and will watch everything around me die off only to live eons on a sun parched dead world. I’ll watch the oceans evaporate. Then I’ll be there as the sun turns into a red giant and consumes the earth. At this point I’ll curse the “good health” as I experience non stop the heat of the sun as Earth spirals in and is destroyed by the sun. I’ll then spend eternity living on the white dwarf remnant of the suns core as it ever so slowly cools into a black dwarf. I’ll witness the heat death of the universe.

What a great wish!

No desire for immortality here either. I’d feel obliged to check myself into a medical research facility to see if my condition could help others live longer. I don’t want to live to see my grandson grow old and die while I live on.

Yeah, immortality doesn’t sound enticing. Appears nice at first but as soon as you think about it for any length, it becomes a punishment. For one, there’s that Greek myth cautionary tale about wishing for immortality without infinite youth. You will grow old and wizened and be forced to live forever that way until the gods take pity on you.

Everyone you know will die. Your spouse, children, friends. You can marry again but they will just die again. Since you live so long, time spent with them will seem like nothing.

If by some horrible chance you become trapped in a situation involving torture your torturers will very quickly figure out that you can take infinite torture and not die. Or maybe die and resurrect for them to do it again. Either way your life will literally become a living hell.

You may go insane from the length of time you are forced to live and the amount of memories you accrue.

If you become mutilated through accidents but not killed, could you be reduced to a torso and a head and have to live the rest your immortal life that way? If you die, do you respawn whole or as you were? With infinite time at your disposal you WILL end up in enough horrible accidents to result in everything being amputated eventually.

What if you get cancer (and you will)? Do you live in horrible pain for the rest of infinity?

So no, if I had to choose between immortality or no wishes at all, I would simply walk away. The only way I would take immortality is with infinite youth and invulnerability (including invulnerability to mental and physical damage and disease) and along with the ability to die whenever I so choose (my ability to die must be able to be triggered through mental means, so I don’t have to be physically able to off myself). That alone will take up multiple wishes.

If you chose regeneration over invulnerability, enjoy getting cancer and your body constantly fighting the effects of it, but not the cancer itself (unless you have very smart regeneration that will kill part of itself to survive).

With invulnerability, someone important WILL find out what you are eventually, and then you will be a national security problem. You will be hunted down. You will likely be experimented on. Enjoy the rest of your life. So even then I would have to consider an immortality + invulnerability combo carefully.

The OP states you get perfect health which I assume means you’re safe from cancer and the like but I don’t know if it extends to trauma from outside sources (shot, stabbed, jumping off cliffs, etc).

Since no one wants to sit in the formless void of space for eternity, what if you were offered 10,000 years of perfect health youth with protection from crippling trauma? Assume rapid healing or something.

You get perfect health, but not invulnerability.

My problem with immortality is at a certain age EVERYONE would seem like a child to you.

Think about it; if you’re 9,000 years old, from your perspective, would there really be a big difference between dating a 30yo from a 15yo?
There would be nobody on this planet that you could relate to. They’d ALL seem like children.

I’ve already got $100 million from the first wish so I become the family secret. No need to move away because every 30 years or so I have someone in the family “give birth” to a baby girl who is homeschooled and otherwise kept out of society until I take over her ID at a fairly old looking 20 and keep it til she’s an extremely young looking 50.

Since I’ll be traveling a lot and exploring the world I can keep the secret to a very limited line of the family.

This clarification makes it tolerable as when living alone with no connections becomes too much you’ve got the ability to end it. Also no super hero delusions :wink:

Pass. I’ll take the perfect health part, but not the “outlive everybody I’ll ever love” part.

You’ve successfully used the first two wishes in the proper order. Now try to incorporate the third one in that thread.:wink:

What intrigues me is the limits of human memory; the brain is a finite space and therefore has finite storage capacity. I imagine you’d end up terrified of learning new things in case you started to forget your first wife or something, the brain buckling under the weight of thousands of years worth of names, faces, places and sports trivia.

Pass. Odds are against me that I’d make it through unscathed. Assuming an infinite life span, the odds are completely against me that I wouldn’t eventually wind up some immortal scrap of mind, clinging to life in a destroyed shell.

What you see as a problem can also be seen as a solution. The past fades away, leaving room for the future.

But how would you control the memories? In normal life this isn’t a big problem, but someone with millennia on their hands could end up a gibbering madman as they tried to connect the distant memories of past centuries, or remembering random disconnected moments with no context. I’d have to keep a close eye on how well I remembered stuff checked off against a master list; when I can no longer remember certain key events it’s time to give myself a phaser in the mouth.

Alternatively after a certain time you might just end up like Leonard from Momento; not being able to form any new memories as they just fade too quickly, the brain’s storage taxed to capacity. Then you end up mad from waking up and forgetting it’s 3000 A.D. and seahorses rule the Earth. I can’t imagine how you’d not eventually end up completely insane, sooner or later.

I’d start watching The Man From Earth a bunch, treating it as a documentary.

Or you could be the creepy vampire aunt/uncle, and straight murder your Nth-niece/nephew on their 18th birthday.

Memories: don’t quite work that simply. Learning to fly a Cyber-Hover-Copter-Mecha-Jet in 2217 won’t make you forget your elementary school’s name. Like in our normal lifespan, important memories would be kept and others discarded, albeit fuzzy with age. And no worries about Alzheimer’s, so that helps.

As I’ve said before, Immortality can be extremely unpleasant.

If you’re the only immortal person, congratulations. If anyone finds out, your future life is one of hiding and running from all the crackpots, security agencies, “researchers”, wealthy billionaires, the press and anyone else who may want to follow/publicize/dissect/experiment on you to discover your secret. Better hope you never get publically injured and have to explain why your arm was severed and yet, there it is, fully regrown!

You’re immortal. You’re not invincible. You can be buried alive, wrapped in chains and dropped into the ocean, trapped in a cave-in/mudslide/collapsed building, any number of unpleasant things that prevent you from going about your long life. You could end up spending a few years or decades being tortured and experimented on until you’re completely insane, because someone is trying to duplicate your immortality, or they’re just a sadistic fuck and you are the ultimate play toy.

Live into the age of common space flight? How about if your enemies arrange for you to be dropped into Jupiter’s atmosphere. Spend your existence as a flattened smudge on the surface of a world you can never escape. Or you just get blown out into space and spend a few million or billion years drifting among the stars until something hits you, then you spend your time riding that object on a trip to nowhere.

Immortality isn’t a golden ticket to immortal bliss. It is a certain guaranty that you will live to regret being immortal at some point.

Oh yeah, and if you live long enough, you’ll be the freakish Homo Sapiens Sapiens Immortalis among whatever it is Humans evolve into - you will no longer be “Human”, you’ll be a relic. Good luck trying to live any sort of reasonable existence once that happens.