Hello friend, and welcome to the Future or Past! If you are reading this in the future, odds are good you have been plucked out of your own era and dropped into an advanced civilization which has mastered the science of time travel. It is also possible that you have been frozen, mummified, irradiated or otherwise immobilized for some period of time, only to be revived by a brilliant-but-iconoclastic graduate student's unauthorized experiment or a sandwich-toting security guard's careless dereliction of duty regarding the red button he' not supposed to press.

If you have traveled into the past, contravening all known physical laws of the universe, you are most likely well acquainted with time travel technology (you may, indeed, have invented it, Doc Brown) and should discard or recycle this obsolete document immediately after reading, lest it be happened upon by some inscrutable character who then grows obscenely wealthy by using our pithy, sarcastic how-to guide to gain international fame years before we can ever publish it on CRACKED.com.

Getting Your Bearings

First, check your attire.

If you have arrived dressed in clothing that resembles your own wardrobe, but is unusually colorful and constructed of cheap, non-standard materials, it is safe to assume that you have arrived in the future by magical, fantastic or otherwise scientifically untenable means at the convenience of popular entertainment. It is extremely likely that you are a famous person, or will be/have been recognized as one at some point after your death.

If you arrive nude, youngish and attractive, you have probably traveled into the past via technology native to your own time period. You should expect to be clothed almost immediately, charged with a mission of earth-shattering importance, confused by temporary amnesia and/or thrust into a wild cosmic adventure beyond all comprehension.

If you have arrived in the future wearing a familiar outfit that has become smelly, rumpled and stained, or are naked and thoroughly unsightly, you have simply passed out after excessive indulgence in your chemically assisted "hobbies" and a large period of time has passed by without your knowing. Depending on your particular circumstances, you may be unemployed, homeless or pregnant.

Your Responsibilities in The Future

If you are famous, you will be expected to perform the following duties:

- Quote popular maxims attributed to your person on a regular basis
- Express shock and amazement at the miracles of modern technology, even if such technology is in fact based upon your own work

- Be loveable despite being best known for prodigious rape and murder
- Develop a near-obsessive affection for some pointless ephemeron of the period visited, such as televised wrestling, velcro or cheese doodles

If you are not famous, you may be expected to:

-Cause a global pandemic by carrying some long-vanquished virus through the time portal
- Create widespread laughter by being of odd race and obviously unfamiliar with local customs
- Die at the callous hands of an uncaring dystopian bureaucracy

Your Responsibilities in The Past

If you are a misunderstood loner whose intentions are ultimately altruistic:

- Battle an arch-villain to prevent future disaster by either preserving or altering the status quo
- Romance a beautiful actress who is way out of your league despite the fact that, let' face it, she' old enough to be your grandmother.

If you are evil, you may be expected to:

- Battle a hero, significant other and/or turncoat comical sidekick to cause future disaster by either preserving or altering the status quo. You will not be successful, so you're real role is to kill people in cool ways and not to show a trace of emotion, especially when dealing with your non-time-traveling son, Johnny Cash.

If you determine that your "time travel" has spanned one week or less:

-Your responsibilities will not be altered in any significant way, in the unlikely case you had any to begin with.

Psychological Tips for Re-Entry

If you are from the past and have been transported by magical means:

-You will likely be returned within 30, 60 or 90 minutes. You won't recall any unsettling facts, like the date of your death or the sum total of your life's accomplishments. If you're mostly well known for the prodigious rape and murder of innocent people, you will go on to vanquish entire cities up until the day you die, completely unaffected by your 90-minute cameo as a lovable rapscallion. You won't miss the televised wrestling, velcro and cheese doodles. Rest assured that your legacy and personal history will endure as inaccurately as before.

If you are from the past and have somehow been resurrected in this period:

-You are not going back anytime soon, nor will you want to for some odd reason that defies the rules of logic and the human condition. It is high time to obtain a Social Security number and start looking for a job. Anyone who knows you as that asshole who pretended to be a cave man in a Pauly Shore movie will be completely baffled by how easy future work will come to you.

If you are from the future:

-You will most likely return there in a flash of blinding colored light, with or without a facilitating capsule or gadget. You will remember everything you experienced while you were here, but nobody you have encountered will know you ever existed, at least if you've done your job properly. So suck it up and get on with your life.

If you have traveled more than a few hundred years in either direction:

-Few will believe your wild tales of a world with wheeled vehicles powered by internal combustion engines. Keep your mouth shut unless you want people to start calling you Mister Fuzzy Dice or The Crazy Gasoline Lady. Also, despite having traveled to the future in the first sequel, you will not get the memo about the third film being a complete flop that should never have happened. You will go through with a disastrous film that is inexplicably about the old west. Your career will suffer accordingly.

If you have "warped" from the very recent past:

-You're not going back, nor do you seem to be moving toward a meaningful future. You may wish to do something about that.

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