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Friday, August 19, 2016

Trek-Tastic



I am a huge Star Trek fan having seen the philosophical journey of the ST:Motion Picture and it's pitting of the human race against the alien entity VGER(ending up not being so alien after all). It was evident the writers struggled to translate the TV show to the big screen. I found it entertaining but lacking in the spirit the television franchise established.

The action-packed Wrath of Khan kept me on the edge of my seat as one of the best villains the ST 
universe has ever envisioned tormented a heroic Captain Kirk. I didn't even mind the fake breast prosthetic Ricardo Montalban sported as this epic battle of good versus evil unfolded incorporating visual effects far surpassing the novice effort before it.

Each of the following incarnations of our beloved Science Fiction Western faltered and triumphed alternately in efforts to emulate the exquisite universe Gene Roddenberry expertly established in the 1960s television series. As much as I learned to respect the rich characters of the Next Generation , they could never capture the heart the way our beloved original crew could. The STNG writing never accomplished the romanticism or heights of heroism our original cast of the Enterprise managed.

Deep Space Nine was an interesting experiment, but again, there was something missing in the story telling this version of the ST Universe offered. ST: Voyager and ST:Enterprise were noble attempts to recapture the formula that worked for the original series, but both versions still lacked that special "Trekistic Machismo" that made the first TV series so great.

When JJ Abrams took the reigns I visited the theater with great skepticism to see Star Trek (2009). I had seen Armageddon (1998) and Cloverfield (2008) and enjoyed them immensely, but could his vision do the Trek Universe justice?

From the first frame he demonstrates absolute genius accompanied with spectacular special effects as George Kirk, first officer of the USS Kelvin fights to save his damaged ship from an advanced Romulan mining vessel that has travelled back in time in pursuit of Ambassador Spock.  I will not go into the plot of the entire film as this blog is about the latest movie.

George Kirk's wife Winona is pregnant and the chaos of the attack upon the ship sends her into premature labor as she attempts the escape the doomed Kelvin. Therein lies the genius of Abrams as he changes the condition of our beloved James Tiberius Kirk from the moment of his birth. Not only that but he reboots the entire timeline creating a blank canvas with a new alternate reality! I was captivated and hooked from the first action-packed moment of the ST Millennium reboot.

I have written a review of Star Trek Into Darkness on this blog that can be read here.

WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD, TURN BACK IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE MOVIE!

Yesterday I went to the theater, broken leg and all, to catch the thirteenth film in the Star Trek Franchise, Star Trek Beyond. Justin Lin from the Fast and the Furious franchise takes over as director of this latest incarnation and doesn't take long to put his stamp on the movie. From beginning to end this fast-paced storyline only slows down to toss in an occasional quip or punchline as the crew is swept up in a conflict on the outer edges of explored space.


Three years into its mission, the USS Enterprise arrives at Starbase Yorktown, a massive space station that makes  Elysium look like a back yard tree house. Captain James Kirk has applied for a promotion to Vice Admiral having tired of the monotony of space exploration. He recommends Spock as the new captain of the Enterprise. Spock is also having reservations of continuing his tenure as he receives word from New Vulcan that Ambassador Spock (Spock's future self from another timeline) has died.

The Enterprise is dispatched on a rescue mission after Kalara, a survivor of a stranded ship having crash-landed on a planet nearby shows up at the Starbase. The planet, Altamid, is within an unexplored nebula nearby. Upon arriving at Altamid the Enterprise is ambushed and quickly torn apart by a massive swarm of small ships. Kirk orders the crew to abandon ship as the Enterprise's decimated saucer section hurtles out of control toward the planet.

On the surface, Sulu, Uhura, and other survivors are captured by Krall, the commander of the enemy swarm ships who is attempting to retrieve the Abronath, an ancient bioweapon of mass destruction. The artifact was stored upon the Enterprise, but Kirk had hidden it upon discovering it was why his ship and crew were attacked.

Kirk and  Pavel Chekov discover Kalara is Krall's ally when she attempts to steal the Abronath when she is led to believe it is hidden within the ruined crash-landed saucer section of the Enterprise. To escape Krall's soldiers, Kirk activates the still functional boosters, causing the saucer to flip over crushing Kalara and the enemy soldiers.

Meanwhile, a wounded Spock and Dr. Leonard McCoy search for survivors and Scotty is rescued by Jaylah, a scavenger who previously escaped Krall's encampment (played by Sofia Boutella) . She takes Scott to her makeshift home, the grounded USS Franklin which turns out to be an NX class starship reported missing over a century earlier. Scott is reunited with Kirk, Chekov, McCoy, and Spock. Using the old Starfleet vessel as a base, they plot to raid Krall's camp and transport the crew to the Franklin, then escape the planet.

Krall discovers the alien Ensign Syl is Kirks secret hiding place for the Abronath (hidden inside her skull). The Abronath is the missing half of an ancient bioweapon, created by the planet's original inhabitants which can disintegrate a humanoid. With the device complete, Krall intends to attack the Federation planet by planet after killing the inhabitants of the Yorktown.  

Krall launches into space with the bioweapon, leading his swarm fleet to Yorktown with Kirk and the crew in pursuit in the Franklin. Upon discovering a way to disrupt the swarm ships communications Scotty transports Spock and McCoy into one of the enemy's drones.

The Franklin broadcasts VHF transmissions, which at close range, disrupts and destroys Krall's fleet. Krall crash lands inside the Yorktown and flees into the city. Uhura discovers from the Franklin's logs that 'Krall' is actually Balthazar Edison, the former captain of the Franklin.  Edison is a pre Federation soldier disillusioned with the newly founded Federation, rejecting its principles of unity and cooperation with former enemies. When he and his crew were stranded on Altamid no rescue was ever attempted. He believes they were deliberately stranded by the Federation and is hell bent on destroying it and everything it stands for.

The survivors, at the cost of their human physiology, used the discovered alien technology on the planet Altamid to prolong their lives. They then converted the dormant drone workers into the swarm fleet planning on using the alien technology to destroy the Federation.

Kirk pursues Krall into Yorktown's ventilation system, where Krall activates the bioweapon. Before it can be unleashed, Kirk ejects the weapon and Krall into space. Spock and McCoy save Kirk moments before he too is meets the same fate.

After the ordeal the Starfleet crew finds new purpose to continue their mission of exploration. Kirk turns down the promotion to Vice Admiral and Spock decides to remain on the Enterprise and abandon his plans on continuing Ambassador Spock's work on New Vulcan.  As the crew celebrates Kirk's birthday, they view the construction of their new ship, USS Enterprise-A.

The reviews of this movie have been harsh most mentioning plot being sacrificed for action. Upon seeing Star Trek Beyond I truly only have one criticism of the story line. Not enough time was spent on explanation of how the alien technology transformed Edison and the crew of the Franklin physically.

In this writers opinion I believe critics of today are failing to realize one major issue. Today's society is freeze-dried and microwaved and socially possessing a Twitter mentality. Our attention spans have diminished and minds are easily distracted. The Star Trek Millennium Reboot was a necessity for todays culture.

I give this movie 4.5 out of 5 stars being pleased with further development between the relationships of characters we know and love under completely different circumstances we've ever seen them experience. This Franchise pays homage to the original series respecting every character's personality and relationship (and even creating some new ones). The crew gels much in the same way as the original crew and red shirts always meet a tragic end. JJ Abrams and Justin Lin did an extraordinary job on this project and I believe it is destined to become a Sci-Fi classic that I will defenitly go see again. They have managed to recapture the romanticism and heroism of the original TV series and have gone above and beyond updating our beloved Science Fiction Western.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Rockin Mid-Life Crisis

Readers of this blog know that I'm an author of Science Fiction and Horror. My writing journey began in 2009 with the publishing of Darkside of the Planet by Salvatore Publishing in London, England. I was very fortunate to come into contact with several talented folks on an online forum
My Writers Circle, a site full of resources and exercises for first time writers and established author alike.

From there I embarked on my Science Fiction novels. One reader, Richard Laudenslager, describes the trilogy of novels as follows on Amazon.:

"As with David Lee Jones first two novels of The Morian Trilogy, his third, "The War of the Third Awakening", thrusts the reader into a nonstop thrill ride from beginning to end. Mr. Jones weaves an intricate plot that develops over many millennia rivaling the likes of "The Da Vinci Code" in its depth and complexity. Not only are you witness to the trials and tribulations of unlikely heroes, geologist, Dr. Brandon Jordan, and university professor, Dr. Edward Fender as they are drawn into an age old conflict that spans centuries, and two neighboring worlds, but you experience it with them through David Lee Jones masterful storytelling.
With its secret organizations, mystical crystals, alien invaders, mechanical monsters, and diabolical creatures of myth, David Lee Jones Morian Trilogy has it all."



If you would like to check out this trilogy you can find all the books on one page here at Lulu.

Along with my passion for writing I have now re-discovered an old passion that has now occupied most of my weekends. My current obsession began with a traumatic life event...

Two years ago I lost my father to cancer. He was a lifetime musician of which I have written about on this very blog (In the Genes, July, 2016). My father had countless fans here in the Midlands of SC. Musicians in the area decided to get together for a Memorial Jam to honor him a few months after his passing.

After the January Memorial for dad concluded one of the keyboardists who had participated approach me. Darryl Hill mentioned he was in a band called Wide Open and he would like me to come check them out at a bar in Lexington, SC the following week. I agreed since the place was only a 5 minute drive from my home and me and my fiance's regular hangout.

That following Friday night we shot pool at JT'S On the Pond enjoying  Wide Open as they played Classic Rock, Country and Beach. Darryl Hill and guitarist Wayne Hopkins had started the group some ten years previous and between these two musicians they had a vast knowledge of music. Add an extraordinary rhythm battery of Chris Miano on the drums and Paul Russo on bass guitar and it was one of the best bands I've heard in my thirty years of being in the business.

As the night wore on I had to leave for I had to wake early for work the following morning. While paying my tab Darryl summoned me over. Surprised, I made my way to the stage as he introduced me as a "Special Guest Singer". I was overjoyed as I belted out "Keep Your Hands to Yourself" by the Georgia Satellites. As I prompted the crowd thrusting the mic outward I heard everyone in the room respond. My passion for entertaining was re-ignited and the lime-light entangled me once again.

Later that week I was overjoyed to receive a phone call from Darryl inquiring whether I would like to be the new "front man" for Wide Open. Discussing it with my girlfriend Robin she gave me her blessing.

I've since been experiencing the time of my life living out my mid-life crisis as the singer in a Rock n Roll band. With my addition to the group the repertoire of music has increased blending my stylings with the existing song list. We play Rock, Classic Rock, Beach, R&B, Country and much more. Wide Open Band now boasts playing the widest variety of music in town performing everything from Al Green to ZZ-Top. Check out our homepage www.wideopenband.net and find us on Facebook, Twitter and Reverbnation.com. [sample song]

Won't you please drop in to one of our shows and check us out.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Modern Era Fortune Tellers

Today is a revisit to a post from May 9th, 2013.

When growing up I lost myself in the great works of the Science Fiction masters. Isaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury, Arthur C Clark and H.G. Wells were some of my favorites. I would thrust the limits of alertness of my ravenous adolescent mind into the wee hours of every summer morning devouring the futuristic imagery these masters painted upon the canvas of my imagination.


I remember how excited I became when I read in Bradbury’s Farenheit 451, “And in her ears the little Seashells, the thimble radios tamped tight, and an electronic ocean of sound, of music and talk and music and talk coming in, coming in on the shore of her unsleeping mind.” As the words played across the page before my weary and blurry eyes my brain pictured a Walkman, the same make and model of the one that lay beside me, as I read by dim night table lamplight. My tired brain did not make the connection until much later that this man had predicted the invention of my little hand held radio in 1953 over a quarter of a century before the first model was ever assembled. Within the same work Bradbury envisioned the death of newspapers and the ubiquitous presence of television screens everywhere, all of which is taking place in our modern day society.

That was the night my twelve year old mind formed the epiphany; Science Fiction writers are the fortune tellers of our age. I read Jules Verne's From the Earth to the Moon the summer after and I was captivated at the precise predictions he made about the first Apollo Moon Mission over a century before the first rocket launched from Cape Canaveral. This Science Fiction prophet predicted the United States would launch a ship made of mostly aluminum from the Florida Peninsula carrying three spacemen into orbit. This book was published in 1865. He correctly envisioned the feeling of weightlessness these men would feel after escaping our planets gravity. He then went on to predict their capsule splashed down into the Pacific Ocean where it was recovered by a U.S. Navy vessel. Kinda eerie is it not?

In 1914 H.G. Well's  book Set the World on Fire accurately prophesized nuclear weapons. The author knew a little about radioactive decay but had no idea man would figure out how to blow it all up at once. In this novel he actually coined the term "atomic bomb" decades before the first uranium bomb was tested. He also imagined the aftermath of a detonation in this following passage: "In the map of nearly every country of the world three or four or more red circles, a score of miles in diameter, mark the position of the dying atomic bombs and the death areas that men have been forced to abandon around them. Within these areas perished museums, cathedrals, palaces, libraries, galleries of masterpieces and a vast accumulation of human achievement, whose charred remains lie buried, a legacy of curious material that only future generations may hope to examine."

We all know the modern notion of Star Trek predicting the cellular phone. Pretty impressive yes, but, did you know that Mark Twain predicted the internet in 1898? His Adventures of Huck Fin and Tom Sawyer over-shadowed his dabbling in Science Fiction, but, in a short story titled From the London Times of 1904 Twain wrote about a device he called a Telelectrosope, “…the daily doings of the globe made visible to everybody, and audibly discussable too, by witnesses separated by any number of leagues." Another passage within the same short story read, “Day by day, and night by night, he called up one corner of the globe after another, and looked upon its life, and studied its strange sights, and spoke with its people…” Sounds a lot like social networking to this modern day ear.



In my own Science Fiction Trilogy (got my own plug in), The Morian Trilogy, I predict in 300 years in the future that human beings will have an INPUT (Individual Personal Uplink Terminal) implanted behind their left eye. It is "tuned in" to their brain wave frequency and gives them access to a Planetary Database called Mother Earth. The device projects an image screen before his or hers eyes only visible to the user. In this future world we use this interface for everything; watching movies, calling a friend, checking the news.

What do y’all think? These are just a few examples from my childhood reading and my own writings. I would love to hear of any predictions you folks have encountered over the years of reading Science Fiction.


Thursday, July 7, 2016

In the Genes

Todays blog post is a departure from my normal threads as I ask you folks to humor me (and beg forgiveness) as I don the disguise as an autobiographer.

On this medium I usually stick to the subject of my writing and the gendre(s) surrounding it, but I also have a career as a singer in a local variety band. I come about it honestly as my father, the late (and great) Merlin Jones was a life-long entertainer and popular singer here in the Midlands of South Carolina. He got his start with Dickie Holler and the Holidays in the early 1960's in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.


My father was the drummer and back up singer in the trio. Dick Holler and Merlin Jones would later be inducted into the Louisiana Rock n Roll Hall of Fame.  From August, 1962 until May 1965 Dick Holler and the Holidays based and performed in and around Columbia, South Carolina. Their 1964 third single release, "Double Shot (Of My Baby's Love)", later become a hit in 1966 by "The Swingin' Medallions". The band settled in the Midlands of the state because a single written by my father titled "Mooda Grooba" had become wildly popular in South and North Carolina.

After the band split, my dad decided to stay in Columbia and began playing in local night spots including The Odyssey, The Army/Navy Club and King of the Road. Later he would go into business with his own places The Thunder Bird Lounge, Merlin's Nightclub and Checkers of West Columbia . He continued entertaining as the drummer/lead singer in the house bands of each club. My dad was followed and adored by many in the Columbia area earning him honors as Entertainer of the Year throughout the 90's. So popular was my dad that every year there are still "Merlin's Nightclub Reunions" held in his honor.


Sadly my father passed away after battling cancer in November of 2014. In January of 2015 there was a memorial jam held for Merlin at The Hanger in West Columbia, SC. Attending and participating in the event were several local area musicians and Dick Holler himself. He and my father remained friends even after the split of the Holidays.

This is where I come in...

During the memorial I performed several songs throughout the night. I'd started my singing hobby years previous when working as a bartender at Merlin's Nightclub. During the busiest time of the
evening my dad would call me up and I would perform I four or five songs. I was immediately hooked by the limelight as I did my best to emulate my fathers knack for entertaining.

After the January Memorial for dad concluded one of the keyboardists who had participated approach me. Darryl Hill mentioned he was in a band called Wide Open and he would like me to come check them out at a bar in Lexington, SC the following week. I agreed since the place was only a 5 minute drive from my home and me and my girlfriends regular hangout.

That following Friday night my we shot pool at JT'S On the Pond enjoying  Wide Open as they played Classic Rock, Country and Beach. Darryl Hill and guitarist Wayne Hopkins had started the group some ten years previous and between these two musicians they had a vast knowledge of music. Add an extraordinary rhythm battery of Chris Miano on the drums and Paul Russo on bass guitar and it was one of the best bands I've heard in my thirty years of being in the business.

As the night wore on I had to leave for I had to wake early for work the following morning. While paying my tab Darryl summoned me over. Surprised, I made my way to the stage as he introduced me as a "Special Guest Singer". I was overjoyed as I belted out "Keep Your Hands to Yourself" by the Georgia Satellites. As I prompted the crowd thrusting the mic outward I heard everyone in the room respond. My passion for entertaining was re-ignited and the lime light entangled me once again.

Later that week I was overjoyed to receive a phone call from Darryl inquiring whether I would like to be the new "front man" for Wide Open. Discussing it with my girlfriend Robin she gave me her blessing.



I've since been experiencing the time of my life living out my mid-life crisis as the singer in a Rock n Roll band. With my addition to the group the repertoire of music has increased as my style has blended with the existing song list. We play Rock, Classic Rock, Beach, R&B, Country and much more. Wide Open Band now boasts playing the widest variety of music in town performing everything from Al Green to ZZ-Top. Check out our homepage www.wideopenband.net and find us on Facebook, Twitter and Reverbnation.com. [sample song]

I hope my father is proud as I do my best to honor him by emulating his spirit on stage.

#WONationSC




Friday, July 1, 2016

An Icy Touch From the Past

One of my favorite steps in story development is research. Setting a story in a real time and place gives the work a dimension of convincibility. And I believe it adds a level of "fun" for the reader. When reading Anne Rice's works I always enjoy and admire her ability to transport me to other places during different times. One can tell she puts great effort in her research. Making an effort to add as much factual material and anchoring a fictional story to a physical place gives it credence making it more believable.

Seven years ago, when living with my brother Steve, I spent several nights researching for a story titled "Toothie." This novelette is probably one of the scariest stories I have ever concocted (making it the most "fun" story for me to write). I will not relay the subject here (check out Darkside of the Planet) but what is important to this post is the setting.

Toothie explores my adaptation of the Jack the Ripper phenomenon with a huge twist (again, check out Darkside of the Planet). To make my story more "plausible" I spent more than a week doing research of the Whitechapel area of London, England in the 1880's. I poured over old police reports, maps, eyewitness accounts and pictures of each crime scene of every murder. By the time I penned the first word of my tale I had the odd feeling I'd actually walked the streets of an industrial age London.

With notes in hand I launched into relaying my story. The hours of research gave my writing an unexpected flavor as I began to toil away tapping out the yarn upon my keyboard. As I added existing theories into the fabric of my own work it produced a new degree of pleasure to the act of storytelling. I was in the zone and on a roll as my fingers flew across the buttons. I was having a blast writing this story. 

Three nights and a few thousand words into the novelette something odd happened bringing me to the subject of my post. I've written some potent and horrifying stories, most of which exist in the before mentioned "Darkside of the Planet". 

I've also received feedback from readers that I have absolutely frightened (a fact that I am exceedingly proud of). But, I can truly admit, this is the one and only time that I've ever been scared out of my wits by one of my own stories.

As the hour grew late and I tapped out the story on my computer I got this odd sensation I was no longer alone in the room. All of us have a limited sense of "radar" like a bat using sound to navigate flying through night air. The echoing of my keystrokes off the walls and hardwood floors suddenly seemed to be bouncing off a physical presence somewhere behind me.

I knew my brother had left town and wouldn't be home for a couple of days, but my rational mind hypothesized he'd snuck into room in an attempt to frighten me. It was the only plausible explanation for no one else possessed a key to gain entry to the house.

Swiveling around in my chair I expected to see my sibling ready to pounce, but, no one there. I wrote it off to overactive imagination and resumed my work. Again, the odd sensation of eyes on me persisted as the dampened echoes returned to my ears. This time I sensed whoever it was in closer proximity. My mind desperately grasped at the rational expectation of a hovering sibling once again.

Upon turning and finding nobody, I truly began to feel the touch of fear niggling at my stomach. Collecting myself for a few moments I took a deep breath and swiveled back to my keyboard mustering the constitution to continue.

Again the nagging sensation filled my soul that some entity occupied the office behind me. I began constantly monitoring the emptiness over my shoulder. Still the feeling would not leave me. When I suddenly felt an icy touch upon my shoulder adrenaline shot shards down the veins of my arm and momentarily arrested the beating of my heart. I jumped from my chair and immediately vacated the room.

Closing the door tightly behind me I desperately sought out distraction for the rest of the evening, making every effort to avoid the office area of the house. I couldn't return to writing and I didn't find sleep that night. Instead my mind contemplated the origin of my spectral visitor.

"Was it just an overacted imagination?" my brain questioned, "or, when revisiting the Whitechapel streets of historic London, did something follow me back through the ethereal portal of time?"

A Science Fiction writer tends to lean rational. But, more importantly, a Horror writer desires to believe the Supernatural.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Pause of Reflection

It has been some time since I've posted here, it has not been for lack of desire to so. I started a new career just over three years ago and it has robbed me of all expendable time. But, more importantly, it has eroded my spirit and encroached upon my very soul. The universe has this amusing way of hitting the pause button and allowing an opportunity of reflection so one can access and take stock in ones existence. My moment of Zen came in the painful form of a broken leg.

I was so caught up in this Intra-universe of my work life that realization of the undeniable fact "this is not what I'm supposed to be doing" never crossed my consciousness. Deep down within my soul enlightenment existed, but on the surface sense of duty and devotion to the job cleverly muffled the whisperings of my heart. You can say the clichĂ© the darkside led me astray from the light.

As I lay broken and mending, which I have to admit is boring work, my longing to pick back up my writing stirred my spirit shaking off the shackles of responsibility and the binding darkness that had encrusted my soul.  It started with re-igniting my passion to get my first book of the Morian Trilogy, MoriaVaratu, an agent.



Reworking my query letter I sent it off to six agents. So far, two rejection, which was not all together unexpected. Before I was querying fifty agents at a time and the onslaught of standard rejections really got me down. I've been told all the stories of famous authors who endured this process time and time again, but I admit I was disheartened. But, this moment of reflection has afforded me a different objectiveness this time. All the hard work is done.

In hand I have a polished, well-written manuscript that I've gone back and strengthened making it better than before. What is most important though, I'm proud of it. And if it never sees the ionized lamp light of an agent's desk I still feel accomplished. There is in existence in the world physical copies made of glue, paper and ink adorned with dedicated ISBN numbers with my name on them. I can exclaim with pride that I have dedicated blood, sweat and tears (more tears than anything else) on this accomplishment. A small portion of my soul exists within these pages bared for the world to see.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Chronilogical Chaos

Repost from 5/14


Upon talking about yesterday’s blog with a co-worker earlier today the discussion took the inevitable turn all conversations about time travel do.

“I would go back to the late 1930’s,” he said proudly oblivious, “and take out Hitler before World War 2 started.”

“I would jump to tomorrow night,” another added, “and find out the winning numbers to the Powerball drawing. Then I would come back and buy a ticket.”

Which one of these scenarios is the most nobel? Before you answer that question, think on it.

Going back into the past and averting WW II is a dignified cause indeed, but, when you follow the chain of events, what would be the consequences? At the time the war broke out the US refrained from joining the confrontation for quite some time. As a nation we could not endure such a strain on a weak economy. We quickly came to the aid of the English when Germany began bombing London, but we did not gear up for battle until the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor on December, 7th, 1941. The next day the United States declared war on Japan. It was only three days later did we declare war on Germany.

Think about that a moment. At that time Japan had a superior navy, in numbers and skill, to any other in the world. Germany was a military juggernaut with massive numbers of tanks and men. America, spurred by great feelings of nationalism, could no longer stay out of the World War. Everyone from youngsters to famous people like Elvis Presley, were signing up for the war effort. Everyone was buying up war bonds to support the cause. The nation’s economic machine switched into high gear and within a year and a half the factories across the States were churning out ships, tanks and planes unlike any industrial nation had done before in the history of the world. As one Japanese Admiral put it, “we have awakened a sleeping giant.”

We all know the results from there. Without World War 2 the United States would have never become a superpower. Not only a superpower, but we would have never gone as far into space as we have. Why do I say this? Follow the line of reasoning. After the war the US brought over Nazi Scientists in Operation Overcast to begin engineering military and scientific rocket systems. At the head of the project was Wernher von Braun, the German Scientist who developed the V-2 rocket that killed so many allies and civilians within the early part of WW2. As a result the Apollo rocket system was born out of the ashes that war.

Scientists called this the butterfly effect.  “In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions, where a small change at one place in a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences to a later state. The name of the effect, coined by Edward Lorenz, is derived from the theoretical example of a hurricane's formation being contingent on whether or not a distant butterfly had flapped its wings several weeks before. The death of Hitler and the nonexistence of the world conflict would have changed the course the United States was put upon. Would the nation be the post war country it became? How would the political and economic landscape have been affected?

The thing is, and everyone of the younger generation of our society should learn from this, every action has a consequence. Today’s youth does not grasp this concept because they live in a world removed from the physicality those of us older grew up with. When we communicated, we were face to face (or ear to ear). We could not post thoughts in virtual space and reach the audience these folks do today. Not having true physical proximity to our audience injects certain bravado into some people’s attitude and the consequences become a mere oversight after all is posted and published.

I digress…

Let us revisit the co-worker who wanted to win the lottery by finding out the numbers beforehand using our Time Machine. Although his intentions seem much less scrupulous than the murderous employee who wanted to off Hitler, this man wanted to go forward in time leaving set history untainted. The consequences of this suddenly wealthy man’s trip would be far less devastating to our nation. The best part of the whole scenario is the fact that I am this coworkers newest friend.