Episode 19. In which we discuss ancient alien civilisations.

I was just flicking through the Fortean Times and a thought came to me.  I spent five minutes trying to explain it to My Man then remembered my “I’d only be talking over Top Gear” tagline (although right now it’s a Firefly marathon) and I thought I’d make it my blog post for today.

You know how, in sci-fi, there’s quite often an ancient alien civilisation involved?  Like, we suddenly find out that the whole time humanity has been evolving from primordial goo, we’ve been under surveillance by some terribly evolved, intelligent, civilised race of aliens, just waiting for us to be ready for First Contact.

Well what struck me is this.

We’re off out in the universe looking for planets with ice on them, or oxygen in the atmosphere, anything at all that might concievably support life in any form.  And we’re finding things out there that indicate we might one day find something.  Maybe not something that’s there, but something that’s possible.

What if we find some primordial goo?

What if we sit and watch that primordial goo, and over millenia, and ages, it evolves into something that one day, millions of years in the future, might be considered intelligent life?  Surely we’ll be evolving too, only with tens and hundreds and thousands of thousands of years of a head-start.  When we make contact, eventually, when they’re ready, by that time, won’t we be the ancient alien civilisation?

I kind of have to believe that if anyone was out there waiting to make contact with us they’d have done it by now.  I mean, we’re not perfect, but then perfection isn’t a point on the evolutionary scale, and it’s not something that humanity should be convinced is going to happen.  There are plenty of creatures that evolved and evolved and developed and evolved and then went extinct.  We can’t be certain that it won’t happen to us one day, and even if we manage to stay alive there’s no reason to believe we’ll reach some perfect state. So for this reason, I think if an ancient alien civilisation was watching us, and if they wanted to say hi, they’d have done it by now.  Probably in the fifties when the planet was trying to stay peaceful and was pretty well prepared for an alien invasion.  Or else around Roswell time.  A nice ancient civilisation would’ve been gratefully received, I’m sure.

Anyway, so what if the only ancient alien civilisation is us?  And I’m not talking Stargate: Atlantis ancients, I don’t mean humans that split off from the rest of us millenia ago and went off to start colonies, or humans that we split off from millenia ago and created Earth as a colony.  I mean aliens.  Someone who is not the same as us, who we are not the same as.

Let’s say there was someone out there watching us.  Right now, according to the movies, they’re pretty advanced, technologically, morally and probably physically.  But where were they, and what were they doing, all those millions of years ago when they first found the primordial goo that eventually became me?

Were they standing in the kitchen making tea and toast in their pyjamas?

Diabetic moment of the day

Not today, Josephine.  Random factoid.  Apparently my life expectancy, as a diabetic, is 4 to 8 years less than that of a non-diabetic.  There’s a bloody depressing thought.  Well, my great-granny lived to be 103.  I might be able to handle that.  My grandad was a diabetic, he lived to 93.  So there.  However, since that random factoid was found in an article that is otherwise utter bullshit, from a scientific point of view (ooh, if I cook my food too hot then it’ll poison me cos I’m diabetic), then let’s just ignore the whole concept.  So really, today’s diabetic moment is finding the kind of scaremongering bollocks that people can put on the internet and claim as fact.

Remember, folks, the internet is full of shit.

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