Ah, Tuesdays. You are so, well, hypothetical. Seriously. Like, for example: hypothetically, I am supposed to have prepared 5-8 high-quality stories for the newspaper by approximately noon. Hypothetically, I am supposed to feel less tired than I felt yesterday, and be in a slightly better mood. Hypothetically, as I was born on your particular day of the week, I am supposed to be somber, sad and full of grace. Hypothetically, you are a bad day to have surgery, but a good day for a business venture. But how many of these things shake out, in truth, when you get right down to it? Life is rife with conditionals, and never is this more evident than on a Tuesday. In the space that separates what is and what is not, there exists a broad and muddy expanse of In Between. There, truth remains vague, transient.
In honor of that muddiness, I’d like to propose a new column for my blog… Get ready… Hypothetical Tuesday! I will pose a series of vexatious dilemmas for your consideration. The idea is to take them absolutely literally, though. Ready?
• Would you rather be 20 percent smarter or 20 percent better looking? Likewise, if you could exchange a percentage of your smarts for better looks, or vice versa, would you? How much?
• If you could only eat three food items for the rest of your life, what would they be?
• Would you rather lose one of your feet or one of your hands if your only options for prostheses were a hook or a peg-leg?
• An eccentric old woman offers to give you a million dollars if you spend a year living inside a 3-foot by 3-foot box wedged into the floor beneath her bed. You cannot leave under any circumstances. There is a small hole in the bottom of the box through which you can urinate and deficate. You will be fed only beans and water. Do you accept the challenge?
• Would you rather be eaten alive or boiled alive?
• Would you eat another human if the only other option was starving to death? Which body part would you eat first? Last?
• If you could delete one memory from your mind forever, what would it be? If you could delete one memory from someone else’s mind forever, what would it be? (Keep in mind, this wouldn’t mean “it” hadn’t happened; only that the memory of it was erased.)
• For 200 grand, would you live as the opposite gender for one year? (Caveat, you would have to remain in your job and current living situation and you wouldn’t be allowed to explain your reasons for switching to anyone. Also, whenever people asked you about it, you’d have to look confused and act as if you had no idea what they were talking about.)