Theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking likes two things: simple experiments and Champagne. So he combined the two and solved one of humanity’s age old questions: Will humans ever be able to time travel?
Hawking threw a Champagne party for time travelers complete with Krug and hors d’oeuvres in 2009, and didn’t release the invitations until after the party had taken place. If people had shown up, he hypothesized, it would be proof that time travel is real. Since people didn’t show up, time travel is not real, probably.
“I sat there a long time, but no one came,” Hawking said in a statement. Video of what the party was like from his documentary “Into the Universe” showed around 10 bottles of Krug being poured into a pyramid of Champagne flutes. Small plates were alongside the drinks. They remained untouched. To be fair, the invitation didn’t say there was going to be Krug.
“You are cordially invited to a reception for time travelers hosted by Professor Stephen Hawking,” the invite says. “To be held in the past, at the University of Cambridge Gonville & Caius College, Trinity Street, Cambridge” It also added the latitude and longitude, the date of June 28, 2009, and the very necessary disclaimer, “No RSVP required.”
Of course, just because no one came doesn’t mean that time travel doesn’t exist. The blog Giant Freakin Robot came up with a few possible reasons why: the party took place on a different reality timeline, the invitations didn’t survive long enough for anyone to see, “time travelers are dicks,” time travelers don’t have control of their time traveling, or, most ominously, Hawking killed them all “to preserve the time-space continuum.”
That would have been a quite a feat to kill all of the future humans, but it would have been all in the name of science if Hawking was behind it.
Hawking was born in Oxford, England, in 1942. He studied physics at University College and then cosmology at Cambridge. Most recently he’s been focused on the fate of humanity and the role space and technology will play in our demise. He’s also been published more than 100 times in academic journals.
So what really happened at the Champagne time traveler party of a lifetime? We may never know. But if Hawking is to be believed, no one came and time travel will never happen. Or, as Hawking puts it, “What a shame.”