Then, there are some that can be answered much easier when Dr. Emmett “Doc” Brown is your blog’s chief financial backer.
With science and time travel on your side, you can figure out a lot of things.
This morning, I went for my third run in the last four days. I’ve been slowed over the past couple of months by a leg injury and all the weight I’ve put on over that period.
As I wrote about on the blog late last night, I then added to my issues by twisting my ankle while walking to the library. Don’t mock. I’m sure you’ve done the same thing!
I climbed the stairs to my bedroom last night with great difficulty because it hurt to put any weight on my foot. When I woke up this morning, however, the pain had subsided substantially. So I medically cleared myself for a run.
While on that run, I quickly found myself cursing my decision making process and wondering if I could sue myself for malpractice.
I also asked the age old philosophical question: Would I run faster if I were younger?
It stands to reason that my younger body was in better shape, recovered faster from injuries, and didn’t produce nearly as much sweat.
I had the intern with the cool accent fetch the science squad while I took a shower.
It always takes the big brain mafia a little while to adjust to the sunlight and the presence of humans not in lab coats. But once they were acclimated, I posed the same question to them that I’d asked myself on my run.
The consensus, after multiple chalkboards were covered in formulas that looked like Ancient Greek to my writer’s eyes, was that Younger Austin would probably be faster, but they were no guarantees.
“You might’ve hated running just as much back then and been in better shape, so there is the chance that you would have zero motivation to run quickly or even at all,” Dr. Pink (not his real name, but a nod to Reservoir Dogs I insisted upon when I retained the group’s services) informed me.
“You were also in a serious relationship back then according to the data, and having a significant other slows you down and busies your time so that running is not a priority,” Dr. Orange added.
Frustrated by the lack of a definitive answer, I banished the eggheads back to the cellar and confiscated their Dr. Who DVDs as a punishment.
“You know, there is another way to get your answer,” a familiar voice reminded me.
“The DeLorean is in the driveway. Let’s go back to Brooklyn twenty-five years ago and see if you can beat 1991 Austin in a race.”
The logic was sound, I enjoy spending time with Doc, and I never say no to time travel. Brooklyn here I come!
Thankfully, Younger Austin was a big time science fiction and time travel fan, so he totally got it when 2016 Austin and Doc Brown explained the reason for our visit.
Unfortunately, he was too obsessed with something else. “You’re not wearing a wedding ring. Why aren’t you married to J in 2016? Did something happen? Should I break up with her now and save myself the trouble if we don’t end up together?”
Doc pulled me aside to remind me that while I would probably love the chance to pass on marrying my ex-wife, I couldn’t do or say anything that might alter the future. This led to my telling Younger Austin the little white lie that in the future, wedding rings no longer existed. When he pressed for details, I told him it would be cooler to leave it as a surprise.
Why that worked, I have no idea. Perhaps I’ve gotten wiser with age.
We did talk about going for a run to answer my philosophical question once and for all, but in the end, the younger version of me convinced me that time would be better spent sharing a pepperoni pizza.
I’m sorry, but even twenty-five years later, Maine pizza is nothing like Brooklyn pizza.
Because I felt bad about how I’d treated my team of scientists, I smuggled back two dozen Brooklyn bagels to The House on the Hill.
Don’t tell Doc. He’d be pissed!
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