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Grim indeed, yet eloquent and utterly compelling."
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I like to keep tabs on time travelers. Who doesn't? They're a shifty lot, what with their attempts to pass as our contemporaries, and their secret knowledge of the future, and their super-high-tech wristwatches.
It's not that I'm jealous. So what if I grew up reading and watching stories about time travel? So what if there are countless things in my life I'd like to undo, or redo? No. This is about trust, and secret time travelers just can't be trusted. Why are they here? (Actually, I blame time travelers for the economy.) What could possibly be so interesting about today, or yesterday, that's worth all the trouble to visit it from 2327?
What aren't they telling us?
Worse yet, we don't know how many people from the future have infiltrated the present day. Their super high tech time travel technology probably also means they have hyperadvanced disguises. How would we know? We could be surrounded by armies of invisible time travelers right now.
Fortunately, they are human, and they are fallible. Every once in a while, they slip up and get caught on film.
Like this hipster attending the opening ceremony for a new bridge in 1941. Sticks out a bit, doesn't he? Oh, sure, you could argue there's nothing technically anachronistic about his ensemble. But it does look like he slept through the telepathically transmitted holo-lecture on 1940s fashion. What are you going to believe—this fellow just happened to have coincidentally forward-looking fashion sense, or that he was a secret advance scout for a time traveler invasion force?
Sure it sounds crazy now. But we'll see who's laughing when the war begins.
And take a look at the lady in this clip from a Charlie Chaplin film (the mind-shattering clip itself begins around 2:37 in this video). Is she using an ear trumpet, a hearing aid, or chatting on a cell phone? Since there were no cell towers in the 1920s (...that we know of...) we must conclude that it was probably a satellite phone. Or some technology that we can't even understand today.
And what about the dockworker in this photo? Innocent laborer or time traveling infantryman?
They're everywhere. Everywhen. My god, people, what is the government hiding from us?!?Close Permalink
Not trusting time travelers is a wise a well established principle. They are often wandering off without paying bills.
The government is, of course, hiding almost everything interesting from us. An informed populace is a dangerous populace.
The first two look more like tourists than government agents. Maybe it's a corporate venture we won't know about until some future date where there's a sufficient loophole in our tax code to make it profitable.
Or, you know, the Doctor really sucks at returning people to the right time.
Your evidence is pretty thin, boy. Besides, time travelers would realize when they made a mistake and come back and fix it, and fix it again and again until they got it right, forever coming back to fix the problem. So what you should be looking for is the same person in different disguises at the same event. You know, like the whole crowd is just this one (or two) time traveler trying to correct his first mistake.
Or maybe just come back and shoot the photographer.
Unwalkers interview [English | French ]
Interview with Speculate! Podcast Interview with Adventures in SciFi Publishing
Ian Tregillis on the Sword and Laser Podcast
Ian Tregillis on John Scalzi's The Big Idea
Interview with Pat's Fantasy Hotlist
Interview with SFRevu
Interview with Mad Hatter Book Review
Interview with Apex Books
Interview at Literary Musings Interview with Pat's Fantasy Hotlist
An interview with the authors of Busted Flush at Pat's Fantasy Hotlist
Interview with Travis Heermann at The Write Line
9-way interview with the contributors to the Wild Cards novel Inside Straight at Pat's Fantasy Hotlist
Interview in the February, 2008 newsletter of the Online Writing Workshop for Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror
An extended interview with Ian Tregillis by Ty Franck, on www.wildcardsbooks.com.