Monday, July 6, 1998
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MIT Researchers Discover Retro-cognitive VCR

Cambridge, MA - (July 6) - Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have accidentally stumbled on a VCR that can accurately read human past lives, and then use that information to either select, or construct from scratch, the movie, TV series, or World's Dumbest Explosion tape, that best suits the deepest needs and desires of whoever hit the "play" button.

"Actually," said Dr. Rebecca Kramer, President of and chief researcher at MIT, "we weren't even trying to discover the VCR that can read past lives, but were really trying to discover the elementary particle that could make a plane carrying the Spice Girls collide in mid-air with a plane carrying Hanson."

According to Kramer, that is pretty much all there is left for high energy physics to do, nowadays, anyway.

"Last week, we invented 'Pizza for Losers,'" said Kramer, becoming noticeably angered and sarcastic, "but the critics just claimed we'd already invented 'Success for Losers,' the week before, so, like, what had we done for them, like, you know, lately?!"

"Well," she went on, answering her own rhetorical question, "we have written DNA that turns into gunpowder and explodes the minute its human turns, say, 5. But we can set the date to be anything. So you can have people blowing out 30 candles and suddenly blowing up in 30 million pieces, from their very core -- And they don't leave blown up bodyparts lying around either! Just fragments of macromolecules stuck to the walls."

Apparently the VCR that can read past lives, grew untended in a forgotten petri dish of generic DNA that fell behind a lab refrigerator and was accidentally bombarded with a regular stream of anti-neutrinos from a "defective" freezer compartment.

"The way the VCR works is like this," Kramer explained. "Say it turns out that, for example, you just happen to have been, say, oh, I don't know, say, Cleopatra in a past life. Well the VCR immediately logs onto its data bank on the Cayman Islands or wherever, and calls up a Cleopatra movie and starts to play it. But meanwhile, its looking ahead into your future incarnations and suddenly it sees that you're gonna be the person who writes all the software for the All-Animation Football League which eventually replaces all the "all-human" football leagues, causing thereby, of course, the ultimate collapse of all civilization. So the VCR contacts its home base on Alpha Centauri, or wherever, and gets the special launch code which allows it to change history, and suddenly the Cleopatra tape stops and the VCR starts to run the FBI tapes of interrogations of visitors who have come and taken a dump in the oval office, for no apparent reason.

"Apparently, there have been 10 of these people over the course of a week but, though they all come from different cities in different time zones and different social classes and are all of different ages ranging from 10 to 80, it turns out that despite these profound differences of space and time, they all have in common that they've all just independently all just invented the 'cell phone GPS web-browser pager home security bankcard organizer auto caller-ID responder,' -- and, boy, are their arms tired."

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