Sci Fight is a raucous night where scientists and comedians debate serious issues in a thoroughly silly manner.
One thing we know to be true - when something is good, more of it is better! Like coffee, sun and heroin. Ergo: this precious gift of life must be all the more valuable if we could live forever!
As scientists get scarily good at herding stem cells, lengthening telomeres, and hacking DNA, this messy business of death looks more and more negotiable. Why go through the indignity of decrepitude if one might not have to?
So much investment goes into making an educated, fully functional adult, knowing all that effort has a time limit on it does seem a little bit of a bummer. Do I get a refund on my HECS debt if I'm too old to remember anything from second-year on the Spanish civil war? Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it. Don’t make me do the essay on the origins of anarcho-syndicalism again!!
Knowing that the knowledge and experience of each individual will one day be lost forces society into this frenzy of information preservation; books continue to be pumped out, even though we’ve not all read all of the current ones. Social media accounts stockpile images in a desperate effort to freeze precious memories in place. The internet has a back up, which has a back up, which has a back up, and somewhere in a bunker lies the last copy of Microsoft Encarta 95. But what if all information could just be stored in…an immortal being? Want to know the best way to smoke a kipper? Just ask Barry. He’s known kippers since they evolved drinking habits.
But what if what makes life so valuable is its fleetingness? Forever is a long time to feel embarrassed about that time you mistook someone’s sister for their mum. And what happens with population growth if we keep living longer and longer? Do we cancel having children? They ARE annoying. Can we still retire at age 67 if we have another 670 years to go? Will the government have to step in? What if you need a permit to extend your existence by another financial year?
Look, it's a sticky subject. Luckily our debaters and scientists will have the whole dilemma cleared up before last drinks. Either way, one thing is for certain; this debate too shall pass.
Come join us at the Howler for a philosophically unlicensed evening with belly laughs, beer and burgers.
7-11 Dawson St, Brunswick
- (03) 9077 5572