Take The Red Pill! (Not What You Think)

My friend Kirsten Tynan recently posted the following, and I think I may have taken it a little too seriously.

You’ll take the blue pill, because you love your dog, obviously. No, wait, actually not the blue one, because you love your dog. Think for a minute about what a terrible fate “never dies” might be when “doesn’t age” and “can’t be injured” aren’t explicitly included. And even if they are, sure, everything’s fine for a few hundred million years, but then solar output sequesters enough carbon dioxide from the atmosphere into the Earth’s crust that photosynthesis stops working. No plant life, therefore no animal life, nothing to eat ever again. But worse, after a few billion years of that the Sun engulfs the planet. And after a few billion years of living in a fusion reaction the Sun goes cold and now Fido the Undying is stuck waiting for a trillion or so years for the end of the universe… except that apparently your hapless hound will even survive either the Big Crunch or the Big Rip.

So fine, how about yellow. No need to be selfish here, because there will be enough garlic bread available to end world hunger, right? You’ll be a hero! Next to you even Norman Borlaug will seem like a slacker! Except… consider that it says “infinite”, not “as much as you want up to infinite”, so on taking that pill, suddenly the entire universe would have infinite density, meaning all of existence would become a single gigantic black hole. On the plus side, yes, that would end world hunger, but not in the way one might hope.

Green is pretty useful, though, right? If you know what people are thinking, you can amaze them, or get away with almost anything, right? Sure, until you go insane. That one doesn’t say “read minds whenever you wish” and it doesn’t say anything about distance being a limitation, so if you take this one, your existence becomes a ceaseless cacophony of billions of thoughts. They’ll need to put you in a medical coma forever just to keep you from killing yourself. (And you’d better hope no one gives your dog a blue pill!)

But hey, red sounds pretty cool. Nothing could possible go wrong with that one.

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