You can have a past, or you can have a future.
You only get one, so choose wisely.
Doctor Odd’s mother was full of regrets, and she told her son these words of wisdom.
Doctor Odd dedicated his life to this question.
Using a wormhole and temporal stabilizers, he engineered a pocket universe.
And he bent time into a loop.
“Because time is a loop, the past is the future and the future is the past,” he told his mother.
And he put her in the pocket universe.
Which made where to send Mothers Day cards very confusing.
Doctor Odd was hardly a law-abiding man.
“I follow the laws of physics and the universe,” he often said.
From his various experiments, you’d think he was lying about that.
But he’d pull out a chalkboard and prove how what he did was possible.
Not that people could understand any of the formulas and calculations.
“If it wasn’t possible, it wouldn’t exist,” he said, pointing at the talking monkey or time machine or whatever he’d created.
But when law enforcement showed up to arrest Doctor Odd, he’d vanish into another universe and leave a supernova bomb.
To erase the evidence.
A wise man once said that you cannot see yourself in the mirror with your eyes closed.
Doctor Odd invented a mirror with a one second delay.
Sure, it was dangerous to use for shaving, but at least it let him see himself in the mirror with his eyes closed.
“That’s not a real mirror,” said the wise man. “A mirror reflects reality, and that mirror doesn’t.”
Doctor Odd got out a chalkboard and demonstrated that mirrors already have a tiny delay from reality due to the speed of light.
The wise man shrugged. “I said it because I’m blind.”
Two thousand years ago, Jesus said let he who is without sin cast the first stone.
Dr. Odd put down his Bible and built a stone-casting robot.
“But you’re the most sinful man in the world!” said his assistant Bob.
“Yes, but this robot doesn’t have sin,” said Dr. Odd. “It’s just a robot.”
“Yet the robot has no sense of agency, which means that it’s casting stones on your behalf,” said Bob.
Dr. Odd shrugged and turned on the robot.
The robot picked up a stone and cast it at Bob.
Bob ducked, and the stone hit Dr. Odd.
Doctor Odd loved the holidays.
Every year, he’d craft some bizarre advent calendar, slowly revealing some nefarious plot to take over the world.
Or destroy it. Either way, he wasn’t picky.
This year’s effort would be his masterpiece.
Each day, he revealed a cure to some disease or affliction.
Cancer. AIDS. The common cold.
By the 24th day, he’d cured everything.
The world sang his praises on Christmas Day.
Then, Odd revealed his Nightmare Plague.
Why did he go through the trouble of creating all those cures?
He wanted a clean slate upon which to test his own newly-crafted disease.
When he was still alive, Doctor Odd’s grandfather used to begin stories with “Back when I was knee-high to a grasshopper.”
“Grampa, you couldn’t possibly have been so short,” Doctor Odd would say. “That’s the size of a inviable fetus.”
After his grandfather died, Doctor Odd put his brain in a jar, and the speakers attached to the life support generator filled the air with moans and pleas for mercy.
The brain still wasn’t knee-high to a grasshopper, so Doctor Odd worked on a matter-compression laser.
But it just heated the suspension fluid, and boiled the brain in the jar.
When Doctor Odd first went to school, he was bored by the lessons in spelling and rudimentary mathematics.
So, when faced with the laughable challenge of adding 1 and 1, he didn’t settle for just writing down 2.
He pulled Bertrand Russell’s Principia Mathematica from the shelf and worked through the proofs necessary to lay the foundations of existence, basic number sets, and addition.
From there, Doctor Odd dug deeper, tearing a rift in the fabric of space-time which consumed his house.
Exhausted and bruised, he crawled his way to school.
“The homework ate my dog,” said Doctor Odd, collapsing.
Doctor Odd pondered what it would take to tip society over the precipice and into barbarism and oblivion.
So, he created pocket universes to model society, and he ran a series of scenarios through his simulations.
The collapses were easy: nuclear war, global epidemics, natural disasters, religious fundamentalism.
When Doctor Odd finished his experiments, he found one universe that turned into an enlightened Nirvana of peace.
“WELL DONE!” shouted a voice.
It was the real Doctor Odd, who had made the pocket universe in which his duplicate ran the simulations.
He collapsed the pocket universe and went out for lunch.
Sometimes, it takes a while for a medicine to get federal approval.
So, people sign up for clinical trials.
When the clinical trials are full, the desperate go overseas for medical treatment.
When Doctor Odd came down with a terminal illness he couldn’t cure himself, he got desperate and went to an alternate dimension for medical treatment.
After several hops across the dimensions, Doctor Odd met Shaman Odd, who brewed a magical potion to cure Doctor Odd’s condition.
Doctor Odd brought the potion back with him, studied it carefully in his lab, and patented the cure.
The profits were astronomical.
People fear a day when robots and computers will be more intelligent than humans.
But Doctor Odd knew that the true tipping point would come when humans are dumber than robots and computers.
“Just look at the education system,” said Doctor Odd. “Producing mindless sheep, deluded into believing that they are critical thinkers, and trained only to pass a standardized test.”
Minions and assistants were hard to come by, what, with the useless Sociology and Communications and Diversity Studies graduates overtaking the hard sciences.
Doctor Odd built his own assistant.and programmed it.
Just slightly dumber than himself for safety reasons.