Monday, August 1, 2011

10 Ways to be remembered by History

Mortality.  It's ever present shadow on our years start off as an observation but grows in stature and volume until you realize that you are not particularly special on a species wide basis and you will expire at some point.  Usually it's when this realization hits in a large way that we start to think of some way to make our mark in history. The first understanding of this usually marks your first mid-life crisis.  After that it probably varies.

Well, this is my list of ways to keep yourself on peoples minds long past your expiration date.

10.  Commit Big Crime -  Have you ever noticed that when you hear about a criminal, you never really notice the victim?  there are a few exceptions to this, but not many.  Lizzie Bordon?  Who were her parents?  What about Ted Bundy?  Jack the Ripper? That's what I thought.  Anyway, it seems that we have an amazing attention span for the big criminals.  Big criminal's fame will outlast them for 3 lifespans, many times more, but they gotta be BIG.  Pretty impressive.  Not recommended.

9.  Have Kids - Yes, I know, it seems trite, but the only way to continue on past this mortal coil is through your progeny.  You pass your knowledge and experience to a child and they add their own.  No matter how far the years throw your genes, a piece of you will continue on.  Unfortunately, your name will only be known out to maybe the great grandparent (if you are lucky or you have grandchildren that are very OCD about genealogy).  You may also get this effect possibly through organ donation.

8.  write a book! (or a blog) - If you are a really good author, like say Homer.  Your name will be around for a much longer time than the man behind the name.  Take Homer for example.  What kind of guy was he?  Did he like beans and rice?  or was he more of a mutton man?  Who knows.  But we know a lot about Ulysses and lots of other wild stuff.  Stuff that still permeates our creative culture.  Blogs of course may not be as permanent or as widely followed, but they will exist as long as there is electricity powering the storage units.  Obviously I'm putting my historical recognition eggs in this particular basket.

7.  Get elected to public office (large scale) - Well, to be honest, if you are a despotic dictator, you probably have a lot more going for you in the historical annals.  Look at King Herod, Caesar, Napoleon, Hitler.  Big names that are instantly recognizable.  If you are lucky enough in politics you will be reincarnated as money.  Look at Benjamin Franklin.  Never a president and yet he graces our c-note.  How's that for immortality?

6.  Draw on a rock - Ok, nobody really knows who you are when you do this, however, if people find it, they may give you a new name and you'll be famous for a long time.  If you happen to die such that your bones can be recovered from some strange site, you'll get a name and probably be shown in a museum for a long time to come.  I'm not sure that it will have the same effect in this modern day, in fact, I think it may be illegal depending on the rock you want to scrawl on.

5.  Invent something nobody can do without. -  Oh yeah?  Who invented the Wheel?  Easy, his name was BC.  He later was featured on a famous comic strip.  But seriously  Thomas Edison?  Albert Einstein?  Issac Newton?  These guys' names will be around for a long long time.  They invented or discovered stuff we use all the time.  Once again, the average person doesn't know much about any of them, but nearly every kid remembers that Albert Einstein didn't do well in school and they cling desperately to this fact.  On the other hand, I really don't know who invented the Clapper.

4.  Predict the future - The worlds greatest fortune tellers have their names etched in histery.  Get it?  Hister?  Histery?  you don't?  well then you aren't watching enough of the History Channel.  Specifically about Nostradamus.  He wrote a bunch of cryptic poems called quatrains that were supposed to predict the future.  The problem is, there is no telling the future with them, only the past.  It seems that people can only match events to the poems and not the other way around.  Doesn't matter.  Prophets of any sort get a pretty long draw in history.  Noah?  Moses?  Pretty big names.  You could say...start your own religion, that works pretty well too.  Those names go on long IF your religion gets popular enough.  Religion is the ultimate fortune teller anyway.  All of them tell you the future results of current actions.  Even extending to beyond the grave.

3.  Compose some really good music - Seems like the classic music is the stuff that hangs around the longest.  But honestly I think classic rock will be around just as long.  People really know the names Bach, Beethoven, Brahms.  Wait a minute, maybe you have to write music and have a name that starts with B.  No, my bad,  Tchaikovsky, Liszt, Mendelssohn.   There are some others.  Mozart of course was so famous he got his own movie.  The rockers?  Ozzy?  How long will that name go on?  pretty long I think.  On the other hand I might just be riding the crazy train. 

2.  Be the first on a planet - Nearly everyone knows Adam.  First guy on the planet and his wife Eve.  First gal on the planet.  Sure it's a little hard for you to do but others have done it.  Look at Niel Armstrong.  Not the same?  well, true, I think you need to also start the populous of the planet.  Not really likely on the moon is it?  So we know it works, but it's probably not available to us.  Maybe this is where the aliens help out.

1.  create a good sized time capsule - Take the essence of your time on this planet and put it in a foot locker.  SEAL IT UP TIGHT.  Water tight and air tight.  You don't want it to get mold or anything else.  I would suggest a thumb drive with your best writings or websites, or maybe just an archive of your emails.  pictures from your kids.  physical pictures of you, your family etc.  maybe some of the crap you got at the last convention you attended for business.  Also some hairs so your DNA is in there as well.  So then it's up to chance to see how long it takes to find this box and open it up.  you make it for a few hundred years and assuming we are still on the planet, history will blip with your name long after you have turned to dust.  If you have the right information on your thumb drive and they have the right technology to extract it (HUGE if's) you could be famous for the Renaissance of technology itself!  WOW!  I'll get right on that.  Maybe next week.  No, wait, I'm busy then.  Well I'm gonna do it some day.

Thanks for tuning in!  All you subscribers are famous to me.  Not enough?  Sorry, it's all I've got.

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