Recently we have been binge watching (one, two or three episodes per watch) Downton Abbey.
We just completed episode three of the final season.
And social norms are crashing to the post Great War ground with alarming regularity.
For instance, in episode three, Lady Edith has shocked everyone in sight by staying unaccompanied and alone in her London flat.
That is thought to be a component of the end of civilization as it was then known.
The great telescope of time enters the story here.
It took me from 1925 to now.
This morning I listened to “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me”.
I heard Jeff Tweedy (Uncle Tupelo, Wilko) describe the ceremonial, but surgically actual circumcision he underwent to join the Jewish faith.
Then I heard about a new dating method where the participants sleep for four nights in the same tee shirt and then seal it in a ziplock bag and take it to the dating meeting.
The participants all smell on another’s tee shirts and dating selections are made.
Peter Sagal observed “so now humans a doing it doggie style”.
I was entertained.
But I wondered what the Granthams would have made of all of that.
Then the telescope of time intervened and took me forward to 2125.
There was some momentary interference, static and fire and fury as I passed through the next 107 years: something to do with the crumbling of the Western Alliance and the return to local barter economics; but then it all cleared; that had all been alternate facts and we had all muddled through the donnie era.
I saw what was going on.
It wasn’t pretty.
I couldn’t help but wonder what the Granthams would have thought about it.
Because I wondered how it all could have gone so far to hell.
And I had survived the tee shirt smelling mating phase of civilization.