Interview with a Time Traveler from 2036: Regarding Josh Gordon

First proposed by Hugh Everett in 1957, the many-worlds interpretation has been adapted over the years to imply that every possible outcome of quantum events exist in separate, non-communicating world lines. Every possible past and every possible future exists; not in this universe, but in other universes. Regarded as unfalsifiable and hence unscientific, the many-worlds interpretation is in turn relegated to the realm of science fiction.

However, Time Traveler John Titor suggests that the many-worlds interpretation is provably true. Known best for his exploits in attempting to prevent a dystopian future characterized by World War III in 2015 – given that many of his forecasts have not occurred, foremost among them the wide-spread slaughter of a civil war resulting in the creation of five fragmented sovereign nations formed from the carcass of the former United States in 2008, one can conclude that Titor, in fact, succeeded in averting the future he described. On Wednesday, I had the chance to talk with successful time traveler John Titor regarding embattled Cleveland Wide Receiver Josh Gordon.

John Grimm: Mr. Titor, thank you for joining me. You made brief mention on the message boards back in 2001 that World War III would occur in 2015, but what’s lesser known is that you made brief mention of Josh Gordon’s 2013 two-game suspension. As a time traveler, is there anything you can tell us about Josh Gordon’s drug test in 2014?

John Titor: I do know what you’re talking about – back at the 2014 NFL Draft, there was much discussion about how OTL leaked the failed Gordon test immediately after the first day of the draft. (which was in very poor taste.) It certainly casts a pall upon the Cleveland Browns team. Uncertainty cripples solid decision making, particularly when you’re uncertain if your star wide receiver is going to play any games; it’s very likely, in fact, that the Browns could not possibly make a correct move after releasing Davone Bess.

Grimm: Agreed on that count; certain factions of the fandom are aggressively chastising the front office for not having made a move, whereas an overpaying move might not be necessary if Gordon’s suspension. Knowing what you know about Gordon’s 2014 suspension situation, should the Cleveland Browns make a move?

Titor: I’m afraid I don’t understand the question. As I noted, they’re rather in a tough spot, and I’m not sure there is a correct move to be made. As you noted, they could overpay and acquire a top-flight wide receiver, but if Gordon isn’t suspended and if Hoyer/Manziel perform like a career back-up and hothead rookie – which both feasibly could – then the usefulness of that second top-tier wide receiver is going to be extremely limited. Manziel’s not going to be able to make use of him if he just goes ‘first-read, Cameron, run’ as his read hierarchy. That’s a very real concern, and it places Cleveland in a frustrating double-bind.

Grimm: But you’ve followed the Browns and, moreover, are a time traveler. Not only did you have the ability to know what occurs with the Browns in 2014, you verifiably do know, as you are a fan yourself. What happens with Josh Gordon in 2014?

Titor: Yes, that makes sense. Unfortunately, I don’t have any new information. In the time from which I hail, 2036, the league has not yet informed the Browns about whether Josh Gordon will be suspended in 2014.

Grimm: So you’re saying Gordon will not be suspended in 2014?

Titor: No, I’m saying it’s not yet clear. Josh Gordon and his suspension status are in stasis. Literally, his body is preserved in its 2014 form while they attempt to sort out his case.

Grimm: What.

Titor: It’s a very complex case. On one hand, the NFL has a much more stringent marijuana standard than most other sports leagues, which is regarded as a very high standard; however, Gordon did miss a test. It’s a complex situation, made more complicated by the fact that the CBA was negotiating a change. It also doesn’t help the NFL’s case that Mechanized Marijuana was created shortly afterward, which replaces organic marijuana and creates a fair amount of structural unemployment within THC-Americans. A very messy situation, given the aggressive lobbying from Marijuana. Not the economic sector, actual marijuana.

Grimm: Of course. I should presume you’ve smoked some recently.

Titor: Heh, trying to get me to take a side on that debate. Uh, no thanks. I don’t want to receive hate mail from organic or synthetic marijuana depending on which one I don’t smoke. I’m going to avoid that minefield.

Grimm: No, I understand. Completely, I do. Completely; we don’t need to go over this tricky, tricky minefield any more. If Josh Gordon is in stasis in 2036, how is he not suspended for 2014?

Titor: Oh, football hasn’t been played since the 2013 season. Once they make a decision, they’ll send someone back in time to inform Goodell of whether Gordon is suspended. At that point, the NFL will resume as though nothing occurred.

Grimm: When they do make a decision, they’ll need to send someone back to inform the NFL. To what date do they intend to send the messenger back?

Titor: 2014.

Grimm: Month and date specifically.

Titor: You wouldn’t have heard of the month. Hard to communicate how months work in the future, to say nothing of Mechanized Months of The Future. That would just make things confusing.

Grimm: God forbid that happens. Just two more questions. First, if the U.S. fragmented into five separate nations in 2008 in your timeline, why are you still calling it the NFL – the National Football League?

Titor: It’s intriguing to talk with people from alternate timelines. Your naiveté regrading who really pulls the strings is uncomfortable to me. The belief from the past that politicians and borders make a difference is amusing. The NFL transcends America; it is the puppet master of puppet masters, and in my timeline, First Among Equals Goodell pulls strings in all former U.S. confederations. The NFL still calls the shots. The name isn’t a vestige; it’s a reminder of their power.

Grimm: Second, you stated, “[T]he Browns could not possibly make a correct move after releasing Davone Bess.” What precisely does this mean?

Titor: I forgot about that – that up until age 29, Davone Bess was regarded as a journeyman. Put it this way: the NFL thought Jerry Rice was a dominant receiver. Conceive of how much better Rice in his prime was to Bess as you remember him. Take that gap, multiply it by five, and you’re in the ballpark of how much better age 29-and-beyond Bess is than Rice’s prime. You’re in for a show.

Grimm: Thank you for your time.

Titor: Pleasure.


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