Monday, July 6

#27 - human photosynthesis

You receive a questionnaire in the mail from a group of renowned scientists. You have been hearing and seeing a lot of recent news coverage about the impending possibility of medical science implementing a sort of photosynthesis in the human body, and in fact, this is the topic of the mailing.

It appears that these scientists have perfected a viable technique and are ready to begin testing human subjects. The feedback form in your mailbox has been sent to you and thousands of others in order to gauge interest in volunteering for the operation.

The work of the scientists has been rigorously documented. If the procedure is successful, the subject would never have to eat again, instead "ingesting" light and carbon dioxide in a method similar to plants. The body would store sugars as an energy reserve, leaving oxygen as the only waste product. There are no consequences to a failed operation, a volunteer would merely continue to ingest food normally as before. Regardless, the subject would still retain his or her digestive organs (though because they would no longer be needed after a successful operation, the scientists speculate that using them more than once a month could prove dangerous).

The mailing asks if you would be very interested, mildly interested, or not interested in participating in these first trials. Ample space is provided for comments. Should you show some interest, you would be contacted at a later date, but there is no ironclad commitment at this point. How do you respond?


Evan said...

Ooo, I'm very interested. I can get kinda existential at the grocery store.

Though, I am a little confused by the idea that, since our digestive organs aren't necessary, using them less often would be the safer way to go. I'd think a fairly low-but-steady frequency of ingestive consumption would be better.

Obviously though, what we're getting at is my rationalizing an inability to give up food fully, because food can be delicious.

Would my stomach still feel hunger?

Still, I'm "very interested."

Mike said...

Man, this is soooo tough. I love food. But the idea of never having a grocery bill is VERY tempting.

I think though, this might be really difficult... like I may starve to death.

A) My office has no windows (well barely any)
B) I live in Cleveland

Could we feed from sun lamps?

Then again, if we were in the sun too much, we'd get fat. Hmmmmm....

I can't imagine feeling guilty outside for 'eating' so much sun... plus i just love food way too much to only have it once a month. My answer is definitely no.

laura said...

Mildly interested. Like, it sounds soooo cool. What's not to love about photosynthesis?

Then again, I love making and eating food, and I think that would actually trump being photosynthetic.

Chris said...

Food is an extremely important part of my life. It's the truest expression of heritage, culture, and togetherness. So, although the idea of not having to work out anymore to offset the eating is slightly tempting, I will have to say I am not interested in human photosynthesis myself.

However, I am very interested in human photosynthesis for the purposes of alleviating world hunger. Some interesting ethical dilemmas may arise as you obviously can't force photosynthesis on all impoverished people, but it is still something worth exploring.

Holly said...

Nice touch with the photosynthesis idea. That makes the idea of not eating much more interesting/appealing. However, I think I agree with Chris in that although I'd be interested in the idea to alleviate world hunger, probably not for myself since it such a part of connecting with culture and people.

Andrew said...

I think I'd be mildly interested. Good food brings so much joy to me haha but being able to just go out into the wilderness and survive without food would be amazing.

Perhaps this would be a good application for soldiers/wilderness survival types (i.e. Bear Grylls) as well as in alleviating world hunger as Chris said.

Matt said...

I love food. That's my starting point. However, I would have to say I'd at least be "mildly interested".

No more time spent cooking, eating, cleaning dishes, or using restrooms. I would miss eating and preparing food dearly, but that is a lot of time.

Plus, photosynthesis would give you a negative carbon footprint. It'd almost be like enlisting for a greater cause.

So yeah, I'd really miss food and not being able to eat with others, but I would definitely have interest in learning more.

Joe said...

I can say that my answer would be a definite NO. I love eating food of all different kinds and I enjoy sitting down to a nice meal at the end of the day with my sweetie. I don't mind doing dishes either and I think that Sheila would be sad if I told her I only wanted to eat her food once a month because she enjoys cooking.

Honestly, aside from the world hunger aspect, I see few upsides.

What would replace the classic "dinner and a movie" date? How would we celebrate special occasions? If everyone took this option, it would put millions (maybe billions?) of people out of work. If this became big, it would completely sap one of Cleveland's strongest assets (our restaurants).

Christine Yun said...

Mildly interested. I actually would love it if I didn't have to deal with the hassle of eating. I do enjoy eating, but sometimes hunger just kind of gets in the way...

But then, I would never get to enjoy a meal with people. That would be tough.

So, for the actual food aspect, I would do it, but for the social, maybe not.