The following is a topic I’m asking college English students to write about on their blogs for a class I teach. I thought I’d post my “example” here for fun.
Asking about an email from the year 2105 begins as follows:
“Email, what’s that? To send and receive messages from other species (not just humans) we used genetically engineered telepathy. All communication is sent via mind transfer. Primitive humanity enjoyed email, but we’ve evolved into a far superior society.”
Or perhaps a better way to put it: __________________________.
Why is the line blank? Several potential reasons, differing from the first idea, come to mind. After the uber-intelligent and visually appealing aliens invaded earth, humanity died off within a generation of the planet being completely depleted of all resources.
If not an alien invasion, perhaps the Mayan calendar correctly predicted the doom of humankind. “It’s the end of the world as we know it” made the perfect theme song for 2012 after all.
Well, the annihilation of the cosmos may stretch our imaginations too far. So let’s assume that the world didn’t end, but changed drastically. The indigenous people of pre-Mexico were on to something that we might even consider apocalyptic. Perhaps nuclear war broke out and destroyed all of the great achievements of Modernity, leaving behind a world that survives by implementing a way of life that only compares to the Middle Ages.
Of course, many other scenarios could fit the Mayan prophecy: total electronic and mechanical failure worldwide (as one new TV series suggests), the rapture (doubtful since the Bible doesn’t actually teach this fanciful doctrine), simultaneous global religious kool-aid-based suicides, an incurable strand of the common cold left most bodies cold and six feet under, the internet rose up against humans and won, apes evolved rapidly due to “innovations” in agricultural chemical spraying and became our masters, an evil spell sent everyone on the blue planet into an alternate dimension where fairy tales are reality, or global warming accelerated causing the earth’s temperature to rise beyond livability.
In such a world, the world of 2105, an email would simply be ___________________.
What do you think an email from 2105 would say?