If you could witness one event in time...

Ok, so following along the lines of the other threadhttp://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?s=&threadid=138933 , I’d like to know what time/event/day/period you’d like to witness if you had a couple years or however indefinite a period of time to explore it…

  1. I’d like to see how the universe really started…was it the big bang or was it something else, like an expansion/contraction theory I heard somewhere (imagine the universe as a rubber band)

  2. The mayas/aztecs/incas/olmecs

  3. The druids

  4. Shakespeare…how he actually lived (and whether he did, or whether he was a pen name for someone else) and all that.

  5. And yes, my curiosity gets the better of me, who actually killed kennedy.

Ok yeah, so that was five, not one, but please don’t make me choose!!! :slight_smile:

I’ll take 1) and 5) and I’ll have a side order of then end of the universe as well.

I’ve narrowed it down to three possibilities:

  1. Jump back a couple of thousand millenia and hang around Yeshua bar Joseph before, during, and after his crucifixion.

  2. Set up a time-lapse camera to film the construction of the Great Pyramid at Giza.

  3. Catch the world premiere of Macbeth…the actual premiere in the Globe Theater, with W. Shakespeare hopefully in attendance.

Assuming five minutes only:

Shakespeare really screwing up one of his lines, or
JC chatting with the devil, or
The creation of the universe (what would the end tell ya, reprise?), or
Moses getting the 10, or
Beethoven playing the start of Pathetique (on a good night), or
Aliens watching “Gilligan’s Island”, or. . . .

I’d like to have witnessed the three years of Jesus’ public ministry and the resurrection.

Although really what I’d do was check out who the heck was my mother’s birth father and then quickly on to find out the father of Elvin Mathis Johnson, my gg grandfather. And I keep on working on that as far as I could.

On a grander scale I’d like to catch the greatest speaches with an American lean. Washington, Lincoln, Kennedy and King.

I’d also like to head on back to the Golden Age of Athens. I’d love to catch the original showing of Oedipus and see the Acropolis unspoiler. Maybe follow Herodotus.

Bah, there are just too many damn things to see!

I’d like to see the look on Einstien’s face when he figured out Relativity. I’d like to see Newton get hit in the head with an apple. I’d like to see a caveman figure out the whole fire thing. I really would like to know who killed Kennedy as well…


  1. The moment that the Enigma code was broken in WWII
  2. The Last Supper


I’d like to be there when the sailor atop the mast yelled “Land!” down to Columbus.
[sup]I visited the church where Columbus prayed just before taking off on the voyage. That was quite an experience in itself.[/sup]

You may (or may not) be interested to read an article in the current New Yorker about Columbus. Well, actually it’s about a new book about Columbus, but hits the high points of the book. Extremely interesting stuff, and certainly not the version we American schoolkids picked up in grammar school.

Hmm… really hard to say.

Definately the Druids and maybe Bodicea (sp?) as well…

Original showings of Shakespeare’s plays

William Wallace… his life…

Gah too many things to think of that I would want to see. Rather I half wish I could go back and become a vampire and see the whole thing, or as much as I could.

Already been mentioned, but…

The Kennedy Assassination

I actually had a story idea where a guy invents a time machine and tests it by going back to see what happened with the JFK assassination. He ends up getting stuck there along wih others from the future who did the same thing. They find out that it was the CIA who did it, but the CIA of the future made it where in order to get back to where you were, you had to do something to help perpetuate the myth that Oswald was the lone assassin. So all the people involved (cops, the Warren Commission, etc.) in pinning it on Oswald were actually people from the future trying to get back home.

Ooh, I’d also like to catch a Ty Cobb game. I’d like to just how mean a player he was.

Caesar’s assassination in the Senate. Definitely Tenochtitlan under the Aztecs or maybe some Incan or Mayan city. Also, ancient Athens in all its glory.



…well, the ministry of Christ. Possibly that of Krishna as well. Deaths included.

Maybe, also, the death of Socrates. Just so I could get a vicarious sense of revenge–I had to read his student’s skata about him, and I hated every minute of it ;).

The Holocaust and Nazi Germany. Simply so I could try to understand why, and what it was like for the people who lived through it.

The moon landing. 1969. Not actually on the moon, mind you…in front of a television, feeling that sense of wonder.

The day my parents first met.

I’d like to witness the explosion of Mount Mazama. From a safe distance, of course.The formation of Crater Lake

Woodstock. I can’t think of anything, anywhere, anytime, that would be of greater interest to me.

Take a good book with you; you’ll be a little early.