Author Topic: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People  (Read 291910 times)

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violinp

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2370 on: February 19, 2014, 11:34:24 AM »

Can I go back in time with the knowledge I have now? Because I think I could happily survive in wild Australia.

This actually reminds me of a Twilight Zone episode where a successful business man goes back in time with a plan to buy some oil rich land for a very cheap price, the idea being that he knows there's oil there but the people at that time didn't. Problem is that he can't actually get the oil because the drills he needs haven't been invented yet.

My point (and what I think is the point of that show) is that it might sound like a good idea to go back in time with today's knowledge, but there are bound to be ramifications one never thinks of. Interesting to speculate about though!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Of_Late_I_Think_of_Cliffordville

I love that episode! It seemed to always be a recurring theme in the Twilight Zone - a modern man, burdened by the fast pace and responsibilities he has, wants to return to a simpler time. And, somehow, Serling always made it new and inventive every time.
« Last Edit: February 19, 2014, 02:40:01 PM by violinp »
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Shalamar

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2371 on: February 19, 2014, 01:52:58 PM »
I recommend Stephen King's book 11/22/63 for an interesting take on how to use one's current knowledge to survive in the past.   His view on gambling while knowing the outcome of certain sporting events was cool.

Tea Drinker

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2372 on: February 19, 2014, 02:26:30 PM »
Quote

Yep. It can be tough, but there are 'goldilocks areas', temperate zones where life was pretty good.


Maybe so but I'm guessing other people where already there first and may not have been too thrilled to share with a stranger.

That's . . . a topic for discussion in another area. There is some dispute over who was actually here first.

As for me, I have no interest in having contact with anyone else if I could go back. I would be happy to just be me. And as Oz was very sparsely populated, being alone wouldn't be a problem.

I would worry about medical difficulties: things like trying to splint my own broken arm or leg, and then gather enough food while it was healing. Or a cut, burn, or puncture wound, with no antibiotics or reliable antiseptics.

Of course, that's a generalized/hypothetical "I"--the actual Tea Drinker, who has some medical issues and is pale enough that I'd be in real trouble from sunstroke and/or sunburn once I lost or wore out whatever clothes I'd gotten there with, wouldn't be a good candidate for this even with companions to share in the work of gathering, help protect each other from predators, and so on.
Any advice that requires the use of a time machine may safely be ignored.

MerryCat

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2373 on: February 19, 2014, 02:37:50 PM »
Along the lines of "things used to be better in the days," I know a girl who is convinced she'd be happier if she'd been raised in the palaeolithic. She's sure that it was  idyllic utopia with no social problems because people were living naturally. All illnesses could be cured by natural herbs and anyway, don't you know that most diseases like cancer are cured solely by our unnatural modern lifestyle? ::)

She's so sensible in other ways that I'm baffled.

Coralreef

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2374 on: February 19, 2014, 02:43:50 PM »
I would think that to go back in the past to get rich in the present, you can't really go back more than 15 to 20 years.  You already exist and presumably have a bank account from which you can get money, invest it in your own name (knowing you social security number) in a winning start-up and you're set.  Unless the younger you is checking into who's pilfering her/his account!

Or you can arrange to be given an object that you know will become a hot collector item.

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Carotte

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2375 on: February 19, 2014, 02:44:21 PM »
I recommend Stephen King's book 11/22/63 for an interesting take on how to use one's current knowledge to survive in the past.   His view on gambling while knowing the outcome of certain sporting events was cool.

Kinda but not really and with a spin, "Off to be the wizard" by Scott Meyer.
Quote
Boy uses program to manipulate time and space. Boy gets in trouble. Boy flees back in time to Medieval England to live as a wizard while he tries to think of a way to fix things. Boy gets in more trouble.

The book is a hoot, loved it. Quick/light read:
Quote
Off to Be the Wizard is a light, comedic novel about computers, time travel, and human stupidity, written by Scott Meyer, the creator of the internationally known comic strip Basic Instructions.

Elfmama

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2376 on: February 19, 2014, 03:18:54 PM »
Along the lines of "things used to be better in the days," I know a girl who is convinced she'd be happier if she'd been raised in the palaeolithic. She's sure that it was  idyllic utopia with no social problems because people were living naturally. All illnesses could be cured by natural herbs and anyway, don't you know that most diseases like cancer are cured [caused?] solely by our unnatural modern lifestyle? ::)

She's so sensible in other ways that I'm baffled.
She does have a point.  Most communicable disease epidemics didn't arise until the development of cities and widespread travel.   If you, as one of a band of nomadic hunter-gatherers, somehow have a harmless virus mutate into chicken pox, then once it's gone through everyone in the band, that virus has reached a dead end.  There's nobody left to infect.  They're all either immune or dead.  You need a population that constantly replenishes itself with new members, either by birthrate or by immigration, for chicken pox to really take hold, because now it has new hosts. Replace 'chicken pox' with almost any other human-specific communicable disease. 

No, they didn't often have cancer -- most cancers generally take time to develop, and they didn't live long enough for one to take hold.  If you lived long enough to see your grandchildren (at the ripe old age of 25-30) that was wondrous. 

 But "idyllic utopia?"  Interpersonal problems still existed -- those didn't arise from city living!  Think about that nasty bully who tormented you in 3rd grade.  Now imagine that there is no way to get away from him, because his parents are in the same band as your parents.  Great good gods, just read "Clan of the Cave Bear."  Broud was a bully who had a position of power.  If he hadn't had Ayla as a victim, he would have chosen someone else. 

And Ayla's herbs couldn't cure everything.  If you had appendicitis, if you were gored by a prey animal or attacked by a predator, if you had almost any infection,  you were going to DIE, horribly and painfully.  If you broke a leg, you were probably crippled for life. 

You probably gave birth to your first child within a year of menarche.   Half of your children didn't live long enough to see their first year.  Half of those who reached their first birthday didn't live to see their fifth.  If you needed a c-section, you couldn't get one, and your baby died.  You probably died too.   (That was the origin of the name "caesarian section" -- it was an order from one of the Roman emperors, that if a pregnant woman died, she was to be cut open in an attempt to save the baby.)  If your child had a birth defect, it died, either naturally or through exposure.  If it was born too early, it died. 

And none of that was speculation.  That was all recorded in the 19th century, among the "natural, close-to-nature" Native Americans.  Need I go on? 
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magicdomino

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2377 on: February 19, 2014, 03:24:34 PM »
You forgot famine due to bad weather and rabies.   ;)

Seraphia

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2378 on: February 19, 2014, 04:04:19 PM »
You forgot famine due to bad weather and rabies.   ;)

Oh, and early warnings for things like tornadoes and hurricanes.
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Twik

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2379 on: February 19, 2014, 04:13:02 PM »
It reminds me of how my archaeology prof said that one of the most interesting things about Stonehenge was that it was built mostly by teenagers.

When asked to explain, he said, "Because that's what most of the population was. Probably some ancient geezer of 25 was the engineer behind it, but most of the population was dying by their early twenties."

Yeah, at that rate, you don't worry about heart attacks or cancer.
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Yvaine

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2380 on: February 19, 2014, 04:22:58 PM »
I think it's a myth that most people dropped dead in their twenties. Sure, some did, mostly women in childbirth, but it wasn't all that unheard of for someone to reach middle age or even what we'd call old. Infant mortality dragged down the average. That said, yeah, more people are living long enough to die of heart disease and cancer now, plus now we have the diagnostic tools to know what exactly they had. In the old days, someone would die and maybe you'd never know exactly what caused it. Just look at all the "what did he really die of? was it murder?" articles that are always being written about famous dead people of the past.

Slartibartfast

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2381 on: February 19, 2014, 04:34:21 PM »
I think it's a myth that most people dropped dead in their twenties. Sure, some did, mostly women in childbirth, but it wasn't all that unheard of for someone to reach middle age or even what we'd call old. Infant mortality dragged down the average. That said, yeah, more people are living long enough to die of heart disease and cancer now, plus now we have the diagnostic tools to know what exactly they had. In the old days, someone would die and maybe you'd never know exactly what caused it. Just look at all the "what did he really die of? was it murder?" articles that are always being written about famous dead people of the past.

This.  "Old age" was your 60s - and if you made it past age five or so, you'd probably make it through your adulthood too.

Elfmama

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2382 on: February 19, 2014, 04:50:37 PM »
I think it's a myth that most people dropped dead in their twenties. Sure, some did, mostly women in childbirth, but it wasn't all that unheard of for someone to reach middle age or even what we'd call old. Infant mortality dragged down the average. That said, yeah, more people are living long enough to die of heart disease and cancer now, plus now we have the diagnostic tools to know what exactly they had. In the old days, someone would die and maybe you'd never know exactly what caused it. Just look at all the "what did he really die of? was it murder?" articles that are always being written about famous dead people of the past.

This.  "Old age" was your 60s - and if you made it past age five or so, you'd probably make it through your adulthood too.
I'll grant you the point if you're talking about the Roman Empire or later.  It depends on your time.  Paleolithic hunter-gatherer skeletons, particularly Neanderthals, sometimes show "old age" degenerative diseases like arthritis, with skeletal development points that indicate they were only in their late 20's/early 30's at death. The female Neanderthal skeleton that Jean Auel used as her model for the character 'Iza' was like that. 
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jaxsue

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2383 on: February 19, 2014, 05:44:43 PM »
It reminds me of how my archaeology prof said that one of the most interesting things about Stonehenge was that it was built mostly by teenagers.

When asked to explain, he said, "Because that's what most of the population was. Probably some ancient geezer of 25 was the engineer behind it, but most of the population was dying by their early twenties."

Yeah, at that rate, you don't worry about heart attacks or cancer.

I never thought of that, but it makes sense. I visited some druid stone rings in N. Ireland, and they are amazing!

Katana_Geldar

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Re: An Adult Should Really Know This - Silly Things You've Had to Tell People
« Reply #2384 on: February 19, 2014, 05:52:16 PM »
Childbirth made women particularly vulnerable. Has anyone read The Red Tent? Death was seen as almost a part of life, and while they were missed it seemed almost the price for bearing children.

I love the time travel Twilight Zone episodes. It is a common theme, and I think a lot of that was Serling's nostalgia. No Time Like the Past is another one, and there's two episodes where they actually escape into the simpler world. A World of Difference and A Stop at Willoughby.

I'm watching a lot of them right now to research for a game, and there are some with happy endings.  My favorites of those are I Dream of Genie and Night of the Meek.