Let’s say you found a magic lamp, and when you rubbed it with your sleeve to bring about a luster to its golden surface, smoke poured forth from the lamp, swirling and condensing into the form of a genie who reluctantly granted you three wishes. However, three rules restrict the nature of your wishes: you can’t kill, you can’t make someone fall in love, and you can’t bring back the dead.
What do you wish for?
I’ve been pondering this question for about a day now, and I still can’t seem to find a suitable wish. Research and recall serves to remind me that wishing for power or money usually ends badly (murder, suicide, ruin). Death or utter unhappiness and financial ruin? No thanks!
So I was ruminating over the idea of wishing for the specific outcome of a specific event, like for my sister’s debt to be paid off so she could enjoy her new life as a veterinarian in North Carolina. But something was nagging at a peripheral part of my brain — what if the butterfly effect is in place for wishes, and every small intention causes unforeseen consequences?! I mean, there’s a finite amount of money in the world, right? So, to pay off someone’s debt, where does that money come from? Who else ends up paying, quite literally, for my wish?
The same goes for wishing for a physical change for myself. What if I wished to be a few inches taller, or to have a runner’s legs, or for pretty feet? Once that wish was granted, would there be a corresponding fail somewhere else? A shorter neck, a large muffin top, CANKLES?!
What if I wish for a horse, but I end up not having enough money to afford stabling, shoeing, vet care, tack and lessons? What if I wish to become a great cook, but then I get really fat off of my own cooking? What if I wish for more self confidence, which should be a good thing, but I become a huge jerkface instead?
Even Aladdin knew that you have to be careful when you word your wish to a genie — there’s no room for ambiguity when forming your hearts’ desires into words and sentences. You have to be specific, and you have to be prepared to handle the repercussions if you don’t wish well.
So, while I haven’t figured out what Wish #1 and Wish #2 will be, my third wish will be to give that genie his freedom. Wishes are too powerful a thing to be contained within a lamp, executed by a disgruntled and bored trickster genie who would probably give great advice on what to wish for (if you didn’t have to wish that he’d tell you, first, and wish that he’d tell you how to wish for it, second).