Sunday, November 28, 2004

Traveling the multiverse

I'm back. Two weeks traveling the multiverse. We have earth here and its reality to some 7.65 billion individuals and then there are all the other dimensions and parallel universes that are home to an infinite amount of other folks. Everyone here is hardwired for the capability to travel first class into these other dimensions, it's certainly not just me.

I was in this one parallel universe where America evolved into somewhat a single major metropolis. One big interconnected and sprawling city. Built up and with the conscious conservation of space one notices when one travels to Tokyo. Skyscrapers were everywhere and elevated freeways linked them. Not particularly the ideal parallel universe to travel to if you have acrophobia. Don't swerve or you get a thousand foot drop.

So of course the vehicles are all controlled. Like those 1950's vision of remote controlled highways and self steering vehicles. Here they actually built it and it really works. One disembarked inside the top floors of some of the skyscrapers. The vehicles were electric powered and no pollution was emitted to make such an unfeasible situation.

9/11 hadn't happened on this world. It was about to experience some other sort of cataclysmic event I was not yet aware of. The year was 2004 and yet I'd have to say it seemed like the way our world might be in roughly 100 years. Really though our world will never be like this one. Too many disparities which have molded different values. The clothing was like the late seventies visions of the future--lot's of silver bodysuits and other wind-breaker type streamlined clothing. One thing stood out in all the clothing I saw: lots of zippers.

Another unusual thing was the wind. Living 100 stories above the ground means you get buffeted by high winds. It was sort of scary. I've experienced hurricanes and tornados but even 50 mph winds when you are high up seems somehow much scarier than on the ground. Maybe that explained all the zippers and the zipped up clothing. Living in the city was considered fashionable and status was conferred with it. In many ways the meaningless status mirrored the apartment dweller status seekers in our own Manhattan island except here it was universally accepted that the higher classes lived in these cities among the clouds and the farmers worked the soil below. Cue the Star Trek music and Troglyte miners entrance.

Wealth was accrued and spent on travel, much like today. Cars were of little import since only the truckers and farmers used gas-powered trucks and tractors. The hedonistic lounges of these skyscrapers made the Ritz-Carlton appear like the route 83 Holiday Inn in Toledo.

On the foreign affairs front nationalism was at an all time high. Europe was an aggressive competitor for resources and capital, much like today, only their was no mask on it. News magazines and terminal news vendors (like electronic paper stands) all interpreted news and policies based upon these selfish nationalistic ulterior motives. It was refreshing in its honesty. The big industries? Well, besides farming, which apparently recently had been put under partial state control, Construction was the primary employer of millions. Architects, engineers and workers built and kept the world's immense cities running.

A nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there. Oh and as a footnote--nobody there had ever heard of George Bush. The President was a man whose name was completely unfamiliar. History had diverted long before 2004. This America had never participated in world war II. Roosevelt only had two terms. The last name I recognized was Dewey who was this America's President from 1956-1960 and he had never gotten beyond New York State Attorney general in our world, losing to Roosevelt's VP Truman. No Ike, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush or Clinton.

In two weeks one can't really know a place. Whenever I travel, I tend to spend my time comparing differences not noting similarities. I guess the biggest difference was the ambitious drive and the city mentality. In our world after the war the folks left the cities for cheaper places in the suburbs. Since the cities had declined during the war making them unsavory places to raise children. This exodus continued from the 50's through the 70's in a major way and is still happening today. This parallel America just kept rebuilding it's cities. All the effort that was spent on building suburbs on our world was spent here building skyscrapers and improving them. The President lived and worked in one of the tallest skyscrapers built in Washington DC. The old White House was turned into a museum.

Television had never become the suburban kid-raiser it became here. Television here became news dominated. Movies still played in ever more sophisticated theatres. I got to spend an afternoon in one. Luxurious? A series of private lounges shared by several people. Easy chair comfort and ushers that would take your order for snacks and deliver them to you whenever you wanted something. On the plus side the society seemed to foster conversation with total strangers. People here seem much more introverted. Whether sharing the transport vehicles that shuttle one through the city or a semi-private movie lounge it seemed folks talked to each other more. Strange indeed.

Just like this blog entry.

My itinerary has me here for only a short while before I must travel again and follow more attractive pursuits. So blogging will be very sparse. Thank you for traveling SDAI-Tech1's way and we return you now back through the looking glass to your own little world. ;-)

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