The future is no longer the future. It is the present. Because a new blood test is coming out next year that will tell you how much longer you have to live. (So, I guess it's technically it's still the future, but this is some freaky, science-fiction stuff!)
The quick and boring science of it goes like this: The test will measure a person's telomeres, which are these structures found on the tips of chromosomes. The length of your telomeres allegedly correlates with how fast you're dying aging. Hence, scientists will be able to tell an approximation (not an exact date and time) of how much more time you have here on Earth.
Going through the rest of your life knowing when you're time will be up. Hmm ... not sure how I feel about that.
Just kidding, I do. Hell to the mother effing no to that crap! If I knew when I was going to die, there wouldn't be a day minute that went by where I didn't think about it. I feel like I wouldn't be able to enjoy anything anymore, because all I would be doing is thinking, "Well, this is something I'm not going to be able to do anymore come X date." No thanks.
For those of you who would do otherwise, I understand where you're coming from. I'm just not that brave. Perhaps it would inspire you to do things differently, to make a career switch or mend a broken relationship. And perhaps you would be able to go through life unafraid of things, because, well, you knew they weren't going to kill you. Just kidding. The test isn't a fortune telling eye-patched witch a la Helena Bonham Carter in Big Fish. (In other words, it can't predict things like car accidents, etc.)
But, as admirable as it is to be audacious enough to behold such profound information, I'm not sure it's the right way to go. For me at least. And not just because I'm a scared little ninny. Isn't part of what makes life important the fact that we are all going to die -- and we don't know when? It makes it an adventure, a mystery, and a learning experience, as opposed to a weird sci-fi robotic thing, where we can all plan things just so, 'cause we know when the big sleep is coming. That's not life to me. That's Martha Stewart-level anal retentiveness control freak stuff.
I dunno. I guess who am I to say? When it comes to something as big as ... life, to each his own. But if you need to know the date of your death in order to do things differently, maybe that's a sign that you should be doing things differently.
Would you want to know when you're going to die?
Image via blue2likeyou/Flickr