Friday, May 4, 2012

Time Travel Mouth Man! (aka Worst Superhero Ever)

I had a whole different blog planned for today, but this conversation just happened, so that blog is getting pushed to Monday because this was too much fun to not share immediately.

This is a combination of a discussion I had on RinkChat with my friend Heather, and a series of Facebook status comments between myself, my friend Travis, and my sister Bekah. Fun fact: despite the fact that very few of my friends actually blog, these three all have blogs of some sort, so I've linked to them via their names.

Here goes:

The long version of the story that started it all, as told in RinkChat:

Me: Ha, also, since you didn't see this on Facebook, this is the discussion we had during tonight's dinner date, and which has continued in even more detail on Facebook: What would it be like if your mouth could reverse time? Like if you put food in your mouth and it got younger and younger until it reverted back to its original ingredients? What kind of implications would this have?
Me: But with everything, not just food. My favorite implications with this included eating raisins (he gave me the mental image of a baby shoving like 30 raisins in its mouth and then freaking out when the raisins suddenly doubled in size as they turned into grapes), throwing up (I said something about being sick, and then we both said at the same time, "BUT THEN IT WOULD TURN BACK INTO FOOD") and sucking your thumb (a child with this power who did this would always have a baby thumb, even as a grown adult).

The conversation, as continued on Facebook.

Travis: Awesome! I would never have to fear expiration dates again!
Me: Yeah, we decided this would be great for someone who has to scavenge for food in dumpsters.
Travis: You could start with chicken and end with eggs!
Ticia: You'd probably be a very popular kisser.

Ticia didn't continue the conversation, and I don't know of a blog she has, so that's why I didn't mention her at the beginning.

Travis: Take your time; wash your cottage cheese down with some milk!
Bekah: You could feed people fish and they'd be all, "hey, look, caviar!" and you'd look all rich and cool.
Me: WAIT, you mean feed them fish that had been in your mouth already? That does NOT make you look rich and cool.
Travis: If you think feeding people something that had been in your mouth doesn't make you look rich and cool, then there are clearly parts of the Internet you just haven't explored.
Bekah: Well, I meant more like they'd call it caviar because...wait, that only works if they had the power too. Besides, you wouldn't TELL them you'd put it in your mouth.
Me: I think that counts as using your power for... really strange evil.
Bekah: Well, if you're going for a more straightforward, money-hungry evil, you could always make a bunch of caviar and sell it. Then you really WOULD be rich and cool. Well, rich.
Travis: I think if you had this power, it would be a message that God wanted you to profit by it.
Me: I was thinking food sanitation inspector would be a fitting job for this kind of person. They could just eat the food and figure out whether what it came from was healthy or not. I mean, it would be disgusting, but it would be using it for the better of others. I think I have the idea for my next NaNoWriMo... (Incidentally, we also discussed what if you had this power but then your stomach sped time back up.)
Bekah: If you ate something poisoned, would it revert back to being not-poisoned? 'Cause that would be useful. Or would you just be eating really young poison?
Me: Well, it would probably depend on the poison, if it's only poisonous when mixed to be so. Eating something poisoned would certainly separate it out into poison and previously unpoisoned food. However, this would only be useful if you kept it in your mouth, and if you did that in the first place with poisonous food, the poison wouldn't get into your system anyway.
Travis: I look forward to hearing about your progress in November.
Bekah: Also, Nathan pointed out that if you get hurt you could ACTUALLY kiss it and make it better.

And now, the conversation with Heather, when I shared it with her:

Heather: LOL LOL LOL
Heather: You could neverr kiss anyone, either.
Me: Well, we decided it really only worked if something was IN your mouth, not just touching it. So he pointed out that kissing wouldn't necessarily do that unless there was tongue action, in which case you would youngify their tongues.
Heather: Man, THAT would be creepy, LOL.
Heather: Wait, would it work on YOUR OWN TONGUE?
Heather: You'd be losing your baby teeth FOREVER.
Heather: And just think of getting braces. Eventually, the metal would turn back into ore, which would turn back into rock. YOU WOULD HAVE BOULDERS IN YOUR MOUTH.
Me: I am going to collect the discussions on FB and here about it and post them all on my blog.
Heather: LOL
Heather: I wonder about juice, too. Would it turn back into chunks of fruit?
Me: Yeah, I think so. And if you then kept it in there longer, the fruit would turn back to seeds.
Heather: My brain is spinning.
Me: My sister Rebekah ended up with this WEIRD idea where you could eat fish and then feed guests caviar that you made in your own mouth.
Me: If she thinks this is acceptable party host etiquette, I am NEVER going to a party she hosts.
Me: She insists it's OK because she wouldn't TELL them that's where it came from.
Heather: LOL LOL
Heather: Uhm, yeaaaaah, suuuuure...
Heather: I was just thinking about language. We'd all think in the modern version of English but end up speaking like William Shatner.
Heather: William SHAKESPEARE
Heather: William Shatner takes so long to speak that he'd probably end up sounding like Beowulf.
Me: William Shakespeare climbeth a mountain. Why climbeth Shakespeare a mountain?

This. THIS, my dear readers, is why I love nerd culture. I love being friends with people who overanalyze everything and come up with every possible implication of every crazy hypothetical you throw at them. It's wonderful knowing I am not the only one who spends a ridiculous amount of time thinking about these things. (Fun example story: I had a week or two in high school where I used to figure out all the different weapons we could use to defend ourselves if giant spiders tore the roof of our house with their giant spider legs and tried to kill us. This was, fortunately, a week during my little brothers' obsession with archery, so I figured we could shoot knives at it with bows, since we didn't have any ACTUAL arrows.)

Feel free to comment with your own list of horrifying implications of this awful superpower.


  1. All I can think is it'd make this guy's job less unpleasant.

  2. I actually had a couple of more thoughts about this last night and I was going to share in the aforementioned Facebook discussion but since I'm already thinking about it here and this page is already open, here you go:

    Think of the implications for slapstick comedy! No longer would the gag consist of someone being shocked while drinking water and spurting that out on someone else. Time Travel Mouth Man could be drinking wine and spit out grapes on someone!

    Also, I got to thinking about that recent story where it came out that Alicia Silverstone feeds her baby food out of her mouth and I got to wondering: What if she has this power?

  3. If Time Travel Mouth man had been a thumb-sucker as a child, he'd have WEIRD looking hands now.

  4. Travis: Oh, man! I didn't even think about things like wine. That would be awesome!

    Goosey: Yes... yes, he would. We decided that would turn into one of those stories you scare children with - "If you suck your thumb, it will never ever grow! And you'll be an adult with baby thumbs!"

  5. I think you're all missing something. You said it turns back time. Couldn't that work like this?

    Yesterday my thumb is mature and my fish is fish.
    Today when I put them in mouth my thumb turns young and my fish turns to caviar.
    Tomorrow when I put the young thumb or the caviar back in my mouth it reverts to *its* past. That means my young thumb becomes mature again and the caviar turns back to fish.

  6. Hmm. Maybe. It certainly *could* work like that. When we talked about it, I definitely felt like previous time travel didn't affect it, although I'm trying to figure out why it wouldn't. Let me mull that over.

    Also, I don't think it's an instant thing, like you put the fish in your mouth and it's immediately caviar - it would be a slow process. (We never did determine how long it took, though.) So if your theory worked, if you kept it in there long enough, then the "youngened" thumb would become mature again and then go back to getting younger and younger, until I suppose it disappeared from existence.