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Writing the Past



Sometimes I wish I had access to a time machine, where I could pop in on Emmett now and then in his life, only for about five minutes, and offer a thought that would, perhaps, pull him back from the brink of some of the poor choices he made in his short life.

I realize he had a lot of unresolved issues that drove him into the decisions he made. Personally, I think he could have used a few years of solid psychoanalysis, in addition to a solid 12-step program.

If I did that, I probably wouldn’t be sitting here with two years’ worth of research, plugging away at the story of his life.

Not to muddy the psychological waters, but get a load of this: We may actually BE that time machine, right now.


Large hadron collider.

According to this article, in Digital Journal, scientists are showing that future events are actually deciding what happens in the past. In a nutshell, in an experiment, Australian scientists were able to show that the future actually caused the past. The arrow of time, according to the article, went the other way.

Disclaimer: I don’t get quantum physics. If I did, I would have probably not changed my major from Engineering to Journalism when I was at Mississippi State University.

But, as I sit here and write Emmett’s story, I wonder if I am not actually writing his life story, if I interpret the information from the Digital Journal article correctly!



So, I sit here this morning, cup of coffee in hand, thinking, “I may be able to say something profound to him.” Or not.

But, If I could go back in time, and see him, I would have liked to met him early in his life, as a young man, maybe right out of law school, and have said this:

“If you live your life seeking other people’s approval, you’ll never truly live your life.”

Would it have made a difference? (Maybe I should write that in future tense, you know, given the latest research out of Australia.)

Whether or not it makes a difference would depend on whether he wanted to hear this or not; whether he was ready to accept the message or not.

Maybe someone exists 100 years from now, writing my life’s story, as I sit here and write Emmett’s. I wonder what he or she is trying to say to me. If so, I wonder if I will hear the message.

Categories: Book Interesting & Odd The Writing Life

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Communication, Arts, and the Humanities
The University of Maryland Global Campus

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