Tuesday, July 30, 2013

No Control

I have no control. I need a control. Not, I need control, but I need A control. That is, a ‘Control John.’ You know, another me that isn’t exposed to the same stimuli that I am so that I have a way to develop a ‘Baseline John.’  And to develop a baseline me I need a control me. ‘Control John‘ is the one that didn’t go to that party in high school or didn’t meet that girl in college. ‘Control John’ probably went to Penn State instead of Virginia Tech because Penn State would have corrected their admissions snafu before I accepted to Tech.

Occasionally ‘Control John’ and I would each fill out surveys on our attitudes about certain things. It would be interesting, for example, to know ‘Control John’s’ attitude towards guilt and responsibility since he was raised Mainline Protestant, not Catholic, and didn’t blow off that girl in college to go on that spontaneous road trip to Myrtle Beach. ‘Control John’ would have regularly attended his Linear Algebra class, and paid attention too, and gotten a ‘C’ not blown in off and gotten an ‘F.’ ‘Control John’ might have stuck with engineering longer.

With cloning technology advancing as it is, having another, biologically identical, ‘Control Self’ should be possible. Or maybe I could have a whole set of biologically identical ‘selfs’ randomly assigned different life decisions. I’d still have my ‘Control John’ but would also have other John’s randomly assigned to different decisions and events: John who got drunk at that party, John who didn’t. John who went on that trip, John who didn’t. John who didn’t ask her out, John who did. Then choosing the best outcome would become scientifically possible!

But I don’t have a control. It’s just the one, non-cloned, me figuring it out as I go. At least as far as I know.

But what if, maybe, I am the ‘Control John’ and Earth is a giant petri dish for some cosmic experiment being conducted on another planet? Or what if I’m one of the randomly assigned Johns. You know, the one that was assigned all these life events I've had?

Regardless, I’m curious what’s next in this experiment.


  1. You are performing admirably in the Grand Experiment.

    1. Thanks Doug - I'll take admirable as a research outcome!