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Like, a Rad 80s Letter

By Matt Wixon


By now, some of you have heard about FutureMe.org, a Web site that allows people to send e-mails to themselves in the future. How innovative, cool and ingenious is the site? Well, that depends on how much the site's creators pay me for this column.

Not true, not true. I would never do anything to tarnish my writing integrity, just like I would never be a total "sellout" by saying a column is sponsored by Odor-Eaters. (Odor-Eaters only sponsored that sentence. This sentence is sponsored by Spray 'n Wash and Aunt Jemima Syrup).

Anyway, I'll get back to the topic. FutureMe gives you the chance to write up an e-mail today with all your personal goals, hopes and wishes for the future. Then, when that e-mail is sent to you as many as 30 years from now, you can see if those goals, hopes and wishes are accidentally deleted as spam.


That's a risk you take when you have the same e-mail address for 30 years. My FutureMe message will probably be spamwiched between e-mails telling me that I've won the Dutch lottery and that a "most-esteemed high prince of Congo" wants to send me 20 million bucks.

That's right, we'll still have spam in 2036. Lots of it. My only other certainty about 30 years from now is that the Rolling Stones will be planning a tour.

Actually, I'm also certain that I'll be excited to receive my FutureMe message. But I can only hope that it's as introspective as the letter I wrote to myself 20 years ago, the one I sealed in an envelope with "DO NOT OPEN UNTIL 2006!" written on it.

I broke the seal this week. Here it is, fresh from 1986:

Wow, 2006! It's hard to think that far in the future. I can't believe that I, a totally cool teenager, am writing a letter to a totally uncool person in his thirties. And I'm that person! That's weirder than Back to the Future, which is THE BEST MOVIE EVER.

So what should I write about? What are my hopes for 2006? Let's see ...

Well, I guess there will be flying cars by then, just like that DeLorean in Back to the Future. I'd want one that flies wicked fast and has a boss stereo. I'll probably be rocking out to Billy Idol, because I KNOW he'll still be around. Not like Madonna, who's doing her Virgin Tour right now. In 20 years, she'll be long forgotten. Kind of like that group Wham! – although I bet that dude George Michael gets all the chicks.

I hope I'll have a good job, maybe something totally stoked like working with some of those new high-tech computers, the ones that have those modem things. I want to make lots of money so I can buy stuff. Like right now, those new Air Jordans are 40 bucks, and there's no way I could get that money. Those new compact discs are also so way out of my price range. But whatever.

Maybe I'll be a pro athlete when I read this. That would be TOTALLY RAD. The average baseball salary is like more than $300,000 a year. I just hope that if I can be a pro athlete, I make it before the salaries start going down. Everybody says it's going to happen.

I think that pretty much takes care of this assignment for ninth-grade English. The teacher told me to talk about my hopes and my dreams, but I think a better subject would be to write about how "new Coke" was such a dumb idea. I mean, duh! Or maybe I could write about how I hate hearing that "Who you gonna call: Ghostbusters!" song ALL THE TIME. I just hope they're not using that song in 20 years for, like, car commercials or something.

That's it. The teacher won't see my letter because I'm supposed to seal it up for 20 years from now, so I'll say this:

This was a really bogus assignment. I just hope that I won't have to do any more writing like this. I mean, think about it. It's not like learning all this writing stuff is going to be that important when I get older.

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