by Joe Coluccio, President, Parsec
As I look at the trees in my backyard, I am transported in an instantaneous mind snap to a younger time. This one is for Tom, who tells me the only desire that SF stirs in him is to be transported. Scotty was only interested in getting the cast down to the planet surface to advance the story. Gully Foyle jaunted and transformed. Perhaps this is the telling difference between a visual narrative and a written/read tale.
I can tell you to transport in time and in space only takes a scent, or a sound, or a fleeting glimpse. I can tell you that memory is reality. As much as the moment you inhabit now. I can also tell you that the spiritual journey that leads to the shadow of memory is travel in time and transport in space. No mechanism required.
I can’t tell you which synapse takes my whole psyche back to a dreaming childhood. Each summer when I gaze up through the backyard trees at dabs of green and sun flashing yellows and deep emeralds filling the branches. A clearing blue sky with billow white clouds. I am transported. All because of the moment and a paint by numbers kit portraying the Disneyland Moon Rocket located in Tomorrowland. Proust had his crumb of madeleine. I have the swaying leaves resembling colors in plastic pots of paint, the scratch of a hard brush in my hand against the feel of a stiff cardboard canvas, combining outlines guided by numbers. I find my way out of my yard into the painting. A quick slip and a trip to the Moon.
It is some of the wonder of Science Fiction that the parts of the Disney parks that age most quickly are those that posit a vision of Tomorrow. That often SF special effects set a film in a previous decade, as surely as Twiggy and Carnaby Street or the bisecting gymnasium pool in “It’s a Wonderful Life.” That Crashing Suns and Captain Future only are left with some nostalgic value. The future, the supposed realm of science fiction, remains, no matter how solemnly you interpret Nostradamus or revel in the words of Jean Dixon, thankfully, potential. Sure, once in a while even the least of us seems a prophet. What we imagine is far too important to be relegated to simple prophecy. Visions from the past mock our present which is the past future revealed.
Are black holes nothing but two dimensions? Is our consciousness in lock step with the quantum universe? Is the pinpoint of light in the sky an alien visitation. Is there anti-entropy? Is Soylent Green people? Are we greater than the sum total of our parts? Did Albert Einstein and Marilyn Monroe have a kid?
Can I transport from my Inner Reaches to the Outer Limits? To Tomorrowland in a blot of paint or a glance at the sky?
You betcha I can. You come, too.