It was a somewhat light turnout for Weekend Assignment #200, which makes me think I should steer away from more sf topics for a week or two. I've created a file of future WA questions, and will select one shortly. Meanwhile, let's see what people decided to do when offered a trip in a time machine:
Saqib: "For my first trip I would want to travel into the past. But I probably wouldn't, due to concerns about contaminating the timeline."
Mike: "My first trip would be back to see Apollo 11 go to the moon. I'd want to be where I can see it launch and then watch the footage as it happens on TV."
CV Rick: "With all these possibilities, I have to go with my own curiosity. I would go back four thousand years and find out just what the hell those nutty islanders were doing with Stonehenge, and how it looked when it was maintained."
Florinda: "But if my friend were to persuade me to take a ride in the Wayback (or Way-forward) Machine, I think I'd like to visit when and where my parents grew up - New York City in the 1940's."
Unfocused Me: "Stay home? Are you kidding? This is the opportunity of a lifetime! See important historical events, resolve debates, maybe even engage in a well-placed assassination or two!"
Kiva: "If I only get one trip, it would be to go to Florence, Italy in 1504. Florence was clean and new. I'd use various disguises so I could experience it all."
I must say I was surprised by the level of caution exhibited by some of you about changing history. While it's true that many a science fiction plot, from "The City on the Edge of Forever" to "Back to the Future," has shown disastrous results, somehow I thought you guys would be willing to ignore or explain away the dangers. I will leave you with words of wisdom on the subject from two veteran time travelers:
"Tell you what, then, don't step on any butterflies. What have butterflies ever done to you?" - The Doctor
"The future is whatever you make it - so make it a good one!" - Doctor Emmett L Brown
I'll be back in a bit with the new Weekend Assignment. Hmm, now which one shall I....