Dodge everything else and you're still faced with the fact that time
catches us all in the end. So it goes with the Earth.
Sure, you might avoid all the other potential disasters and
catastrophes, but the world still has a sell by date and its get older
and colder, the Sun burns more and more hydrogen and entropy in
general wears down mountains as well as men. Sooner or later it
all just dies like a ninety-year
old man with a bad heart and a
lifetime unlimited free bordello pass.
H. G. Wells
was aware of this when he wrote his first science fiction novel,
The Time Machine
in 1895. When his anonymous hero travelled
800,000 years into the future he found that civilisation had been and
gone and that mankind had split into two species. The middle
class had become a race of diminutive lotus eaters called Eloi with
all the personal incentive of a cabbage and the working class had
degenerated into Morlocks, subterranean cannibals who bred and fed
upon the Eloi.
Escaping from the Morlocks, our hero
then travelled millions of years into the future until he found the
dead planet. It had long ceased to rotate and showed the
same face to the Sun, which had grown swollen and cold as it burned itself
out. Even the oceans were evaporating and the only life were
lethargic squid-like things that floated upon the waters. The Eons
had taken their toll. The long history of the Earth had come to
a sullen end.
And my dry cleaning was still not