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Stepping through a doorway of time

Published March 12. 2011 09:00AM

It's so easy to be swept up in current events today and if one devours all the news we are bombarded with 24 hours a day seven days a week, it can quickly be overwhelming. We seem to be in a spiraling cycle speeding toward the ground which is a far cry from where most of us were twenty years ago. With the advent of the Internet and instant informational gratification, our perceptions of life becoming increasingly magnified.

I have to be honest. There are times I long for a simpler time, not because life would be easier but more because it would be slower. Once in a while it is a fun diversion to just sit down and imagine what life could have been like in the past or even ahead in the future. I prefer speculating about the past though as we have a sense of what that time was like from our history books and written memoirs. Before I share with you my thoughts of the past, ask yourself. If you could step through a doorway to any time period where would that doorway lead you?

I have a vivid imagination I suppose as I can sit and visualize periods of history from the reading I've done through the years. History has always interested me. When I read, my mind naturally paints scenes for me. I suppose this is a reason I enjoy reading about historical periods. Since I asked you which time periods you would experience, I will tell you which periods I think would be interesting for me.

1. Vaudeville. I suppose it's the entertainer in me, but the first period I would travel to is the early part of the 20th century when live entertainment was the king of the world and entertainers were the superstars of their day. I would say I am partial to this time period since being a magician, it would have been an exciting time since many were traveling the world performing with live shows including Harry Houdini, Harry Blackstone, Howard Thurston and Harry Kellar. These men headlined vaudeville and live theater through this period of time. It was a golden era of magic and one that I think would have been enjoyable.

2. The Old West. Turn the clocks back 20 or 30 years before vaudeville and turn your eyes to the west and you will land in the second time period that I would enjoy visiting. The Old West. Of course I would probably visit the old west as a medicine man with an old fashioned medicine show to entertain and sell some type of health tonic. Once again magic was heavily involved in these shows which one could consider to be a variation of the sideshow I suppose. For me, it wouldn't be a matter of performing the job as it would be to actually see and experience the gunfighters in person about whom we read. I would like to see what they were really like. Granted life would not be easy in the Old West, but I imagine for those that lived it without regret it was an exciting and fulfilling time.

3. Colonial Period. As we travel backward, the times probably become more difficult for us as we lose more of the creature comforts we enjoy today, but this time period is especially alluring as a student of history. To meet and interact with our founders would be an experience that would be unique and exciting. These 50 or so men shaped the greatest nation on earth and set in motion a plan that would generate a legacy no one could possibly have fully imagined in 1776. They sacrificed and risked everything for freedom. I think many have forgotten this and have left our freedoms erode much further than they should have. It sure would be interesting to get a first hand perspective not only on what this time period was like, but also to find out if this country was truly what they wanted it to be.

4. Ancient Egypt at the time of the Pyramids. There is so much speculation over how Egyptian dynasties built the pyramids and what they truly represent to Egyptian society. So many believe they were built as temples while others believe them to have quite a mystical purpose. Others believe them to be a power plant of old or a temperance device to calm the planet. No one really knows what their true purpose would be, but it sure would be interesting to find out firsthand. In addition, I would love the opportunity to see what was lost when the Great Library of Alexandria was destroyed. It would truly be interesting to see if these ancient civilizations truly had advanced knowledge or if it is wishful thinking on the parts of modern speculation.

5. The Beginning. Finally I would like to travel back to the beginning. I'm not sure if I have decided between the real beginning or just the beginning of man. In a way I would like to see both origins, but if I had to choose, I suppose I would really like to see from where we really came. Were we created in a mystical feat? Were we dropped here by aliens? Did we evolve? What is the answer?

Where would you go?

Til next time ….

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