How would someone in today's age of documentation handle the practical aspects of immortality?
August 7, 2012 2:58 PM Subscribe
(sci-fi filter) How would someone in today's age of documentation handle the practical aspects of immortality?
posted by JoannaC to Grab Bag (39 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
I recently found an old young adult novel I had about a family who accidentally drinks from a magic spring and becomes immortal. They describe difficulties such as having to move to a new town every decade or so because they don't age and people would get suspicious. Maybe you could fudge this in the early 20th century when the book is set, but I'm not sure how, on a theoretical level, this could actually work today. Within a decade or so, your appearance would not match the age on your passport, driver's license etc. Would you just buy a cabin in the woods, register it to dummy corporation that you could control in perpetuity under whatever name, and live off the land in isolation? Would you register a fake baby every 20 years or so and then assume its identity when it comes of age, so you'd always have a steady supply of passports, social insurance numbers etc. waiting in the wings and then you could just move cities, get regular jobs using legit ID, and not have to be a hermit? Could you set up some sort of investment, now, that within a hundred years or so would have you very well taken care of so you could never work again and just travel or do whatever? Or would you 'come out' and submit to the scientific and tabloid scrutiny, hoping that once the initial furor died down and your point was proven, you could get special never-expiring papers from the government and live like a normal citizen?
Obviously, this is not a real-world problem :) But the book has me thinking, out of curiosity, about this. I don't think it's so easy to just pack up your horse, drive it another town, say you are so and so, and establish a life for yourself. So, if you had this problem, today, what would be the best plan for covering the necessities, staying off the radar (or on it, if you chose) and living as legit a life as possible? How would you deal with the need to have proper paperwork that modern society imposes on us? What would be your 'plan' for the rest of your immortal life?