Happy Pretend to be a Time Traveler Day!
Now don’t go pretending that you forgot. Pretend to be a Time Traveler Day comes but once a year, and this year I think we should all participate together. Now according to Koala Wallop, we have three choices of time traveler models, so you need to choose one. And I quote that blog (at length):
"1) Utopian/cliché Future – "If the Future did a documentary of the last fifty years, this is how badly the reenactors would dress." Think Star Trek: TNG or the Time Travelers from Hob. Ever see how the society in Futurama sees the 20th century? Run with it. Your job is to dress with moderately anachronistic clothing and speak in slang from varying decades. Here are some good starters:
– Greet people by referring to things that don’t yet exist or haven’t existed for a long time. Example: "Have you penetrated the atmosphere lately?" "What spectrum will today’s broadcast be in?" and "Your king must be a kindly soul!"
– Show extreme ignorance in operating regular technology. Pay phones should be a complete mystery (try placing the receiver in odd places). Chuckle knowingly at cell phones.
2) Dystopian Future – This one offers a little more flexibility. It can be any kind of future from Terminator to Freejack. The important thing to remember is dress like a crazy person with armor. Black spray painted football pads, high tech visors, torn up trenchcoats and maybe even some dirt here or there. Remember, dystopian future travelers are very startled that they’ve gone back in time. Some starters:
– If you go the "prisoner who’s escaped the future" try shaving your head and putting a barcode on the back of your neck. Then stagger around and stare at the sky, as if you’ve never seen it before.
– Walk up to random people and say "WHAT YEAR IS THIS?" and when they tell you, get quiet and then say "Then there’s still time!" and run off.
– Stand in front of a statue (any statue, really), fall to your knees, and yell "NOOOOOOOOO"
– Stare at newspaper headlines and look astonished.
– Take some trinket with you (it can be anything really), hand it to some stranger, along with a phone number and say "In thirty years dial this number. You’ll know what to do after that." Then slip away.
2) The Past – This one is more for beginners. Basically dress in period clothing (preferably Victorian era) and stagger around amazed at everything. Since the culture’s set in place already, you have more of a template to work off of. Some pointers:
– Airplanes are terrifying. Also, carry on conversations with televisions for a while.
– Discover and become obsessed with one trivial aspect of technology, like automatic grocery doors. Stay there for hours playing with it.
– Be generally terrified of people who are dressed immodestly compared to your era. Tattoos and shorts on women are especially scary."
The statue suggestion is my personal favorite.
Now I run a law-abiding children’s literary blog, so my suggestion is that you pick your favorite time traveling children’s book and go from there.
Oh. I’m sorry. You can’t THINK of any great time traveling children’s books? Then try Tom’s Midnight Garden, and walk around letting people think you’re a ghost. Or I’ll let you go YA if you must. May I suggest going the Mr. Was route, getting your own grandfather to attempt to strangle you while on his death bed. That’s always classy.
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About Betsy Bird
Betsy Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.
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