On Time Travel

Stephen Hawking once said, “If time travel is real, where are all the time travelers?” Everyone I talk to thinks this is such a great quote and that it proves that time travel is just a fantasy. But what people are forgetting is that Stephen Hawking is obviously a time traveler.

Think about it. “If time travel is real, where are all the time travelers?” That is exactly the kind of thing a time traveler would say. Everyone’s like “Oh, Stephen Hawking, you’re so smart, of course there’s no such thing as time travel!” Meanwhile, Hawking is probably at the dog track right now winning trifecta after trifecta.

Let’s think about this rationally. If you were a time traveler who had visited the future, and someone asked you point-blank if time travel was possible, what would you say? “Oh, yeah, time travel is definitely possible. In fact, I’m a time traveler—confiscate my gambling earnings”? No. You would make some witty quip and change the subject. Then you would politely excuse yourself, call a bookie, and bet on Duke to defeat UNLV in the 1991 NCAA semifinals, even though they were eleven-point underdogs.

Where are all the time travelers? They’re on Wall Street, smoking Cuban cigars and laughing so hard that tears are streaming down their fat faces. Meanwhile, we’re sitting around like morons, betting our money on random dogs and horses and talking about how smart Stephen Hawking is. He probably didn’t even write his books! If you could magically travel through time, think about how easy it would be to bring back some smart book from the future, retype it, and pass it off as your own.
The following people are also probably time travelers:

  • the woman who married Bill Gates before he invented Microsoft
  • the guy who just happened to be filming JFK when he got assassinated
  • George Foreman (how else would he know to sponsor that grill?)

There have always been time travelers. And anyone who says otherwise probably has something to hide.

– Simon Rich

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