The letter also predicts the invention of a chewing gum that tastes like food and will replace food.
An 11-year-old girl wrote a rather whimsical letter in 1969 making predictions about the future and it's spookily accurate. The existence of the letter came to light after an upholsterer Peter found the note stuffed down the back of a sofa which was sent to him for restoration, reported Mirror. Among other things, the girl predicts the invention of Zoom calls and Facetime. Dated February 23, 1969, the letter appears to be written by an 11-year-old girl, and, in it, she imagines what the world would be like in 1980. In retrospect, the girl may have been ahead of the times, even when it came to predicting the future. Some of the predictions focus on technological changes and video calling in particular.
She narrates a future conversation with her husband after he returns from work. “’Hello, dear,’ he said to me. ‘I’ve just got to ring up my friend on the telephone’. ’Well you’d better tidy yourself up a bit,’ I said," reads the letter. “In 1969 the telephone was a square box thing with a resiver [sic] on top of it. But now it is still a resiver [sic], but you can see the people you are talking to, for there is a screen where you can see the people. It is a bit like a television.” The letter is never more relatable than now, during the pandemic. Zoom calls have become the norm and let's face it, most of us aren't wearing pants during zoom calls. The girl's imaginary conversation asking her partner to "tidy yourself up a bit" resonates more than ever now. The letter isn't signed so there's no name to trace the writer. The writer imagines herself as a married bank worker.
Rosa Beckerton, Peter's wife, made the letter public in the hope of finding the girl who made the predictions. The letter was stuffed down a sofa which was sent to him for restoration after being bought second-hand. “When my husband showed it to me I couldn’t believe it. I thought oh my god, look at this," said Rosa Beckerton, 66. “It was just so interesting because looking at it today she’s got a lot of her predictions kind of right, but in her childish innocent way she thought it would all happen in ten years." Beckerton is hoping the author of the letter recognizes it and comes forward. “My husband has found all sorts of rubbish down the side of sofas and furniture before - but never anything as interesting as this,” she added.
The letter also appears to be a submission for an assignment at school. The letter has corrections from a teacher and certain comments in red, with the letter being rated "Good" at the very end. The author is likely to be 62-years-old now and could still be alive. Another prediction is yet to be fulfilled. “The year is 1980, the time is half-past moon dust. Here I am twenty-one years of age, sitting in a cushion of air. I remember when I was 11 years old and I was at school, things have changed since then. For instance, the television has changed. In 1969 it was a square box with knobs in front of it. Now it is a big screen with knobs on your chair arm to switch it on and off.” While we have invented the remote control for the TV, we still don't have a chair that doubles up as a remote. That should be the cue for technology companies to swoop in on the next big thing. She also imagines doors that are “electric” and operated by press buttons. We certainly got that done.
She also predicts the existence of a chewing gum that doubles up as food and tastes like food. She says she usually prepared tea for her husband but now everything has been replaced by chewing gum. "You may think that we have not enough to eat but you are wrong, because this piece of chewing gum is food. You chew this gum and you can feel the food going down. You can also taste it. There is no messy washing-up to do afterwards.” Personally, I can't wait to get to the chewing gum food era. Can't wait to look back and think, "Remember when we used to make food and wash dishes?" Future can't get here fast enough.