If there is one person from history that I could bring back to our modern times and hang out with for a few years while I bring them up to speed on everything that has gone down since their death, I would easily choose Ben Franklin.
Think about it: could there be a more perfect historical figure to pull from the grave, re-animate, and then plop down in the middle of New York City? Ben was a writer, a printer, a publisher, an inventor, a scientist, a politician, a statesman, an historian, a comedian, and one of the first world-wide celebrities. Also, it hasn’t been all that long since he was around, relatively speaking, and that, combined with his keen and forward thinking mind, would probably help prevent his head from exploding.
[Ben, Deb! Get on up out of there and join us!]
I would give anything to discuss the 222 years of American and world history since Franklin’s death. Imagine the insight he could provide on current politics, foreign and domestic. How cool would it be to share all the awesome technology that has evolved from the scientific breakthroughs achieved by Franklin and his contemporaries? Imagine Ben Franklin, the first American media mogul, listening to radio for the first time; imagine his reaction to television; the fucking INTERNET, for crying out loud!
His wit, intellectual curiosity, brilliance, understanding of human nature, and mastery of mass media would be so well suited to examine and critique this fascinating place I call Bat Country. Of course Ben would piss himself with laughter over the fact that his face graces our $100 bill. Franklin, a world-renowned admirer of women, both for their bodies and minds, would thoroughly enjoy how great a part women play in our modern society, and how freaking hot and sexy they have gotten in 222 years. Ben Franklin would surely get a good kick out of it all, and would provide such tremendous insight on these modern times, before ultimately improving everything (if we can manage to pull him away from internet porn.)
If Ben Franklin were alive today, I imagine that he’d be combination of Steve Jobs, Howard Stern, Ted Turner, Roger Ailes, Hugh Hefner, George Clooney, Paul Giamatti, Noam Chomsky, Christopher Hitchens, and Kurt Vonnegut.
In my mind’s eye, the vision of Ben Franklin walking up the Ben Franklin Parkway, from City Hall, as he approaches the famous steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum with an iPad under his arm, always puts a goofy grin on my face. And I start giggling when I think of him pulling out his iPad in order to see what this Rocky fellow is all about.