Brain Parade, the Second - Pick a Spaceship, any Spaceship
MT: "We give you a coupon redeemable for any spacecraft depicted in a science fiction story (insurance not included). Which ship do you trade it in for and what do you do with it?"
There were quite a few ideas we tossed around with this one; the Enterprise with its holodeck and matter replicators, the SDF-1 for the space folding and genetics technology (not to mention and giant laser and big friggen robot), or the Heart Of Gold complete with the Infinite Improbability Drive and a depressed robot. But we finally settled on the staple of British sci-fi. The TARDIS. Time And Relative Dimension In Space. A space ship that travels through time, space and dimensions. It's the signature vehicle of Doctor Who, and our choice for the coupon trade in. The Ninth Docotor said it best with "It's not just any old power source -- it's the TARDIS! My TARDIS: the best ship in the universe."
Because the TARDIS's interior occupies separate dimensions from its exterior, it's bigger on the inside than it is on the outside be several orders of magnitude. The TARDIS literally has everything. It has on occasion contained entire cities and even whole planets. But standard, it comes complete with living quarters, kitchens, swimming pools, a hospital, an art gallery, libraries, gardens, a cricket pavilion and a multi story MC Escheresque wardrobe. The TARDIS also sports robotic support in the form of a K-9 unit, a brilliant incredibly useful rolling Aibo with a laser. It can also change it's appearance to blend in with the local surroundings, although the doctor's Tardis lost the ability to assume any form.
The TARDIS's controls are isomorphic, mapping themselves to their specific owner. And it's power source is infinite, tapping into an ancient mystical black hole. It's nearly indestructible, and can teleport to safety if attacked. The TARDIS uses an Astral Map to plot out the entire space time continuum, and can travel to any place or any time in a fashion that makes speed meaningless. In addition, the TARDIS allows its users to speak and understand any language. And the ship itself is a soulful intelligent being, despite its silence. It will sometimes propel you of it's own accord to someplace exciting or where you are needed. The TARDIS is in essence the ultimate Sport Utility Vehicle.
For the second part, we are faced with an interesting dilemma. What do you do with a ship that can take you anywhere in time and space? We decided to invest our time with the TARDIS in helping humanity. Not in a heavy handed way, but we would simply pop around and change history to avert any massive species wide extinction of the human race. And we'd do so quietly. Ensuring that human kind is around for as long as possible, but without raising a fuss. We'd set up shop in the distant future, and travel back through history, smoothing over the biggest of the trouble spots.
After our work was over, before retiring and ending our omniverse spanning escapades, we would have ourselves a party. A transdimensional tailgate party at the heat death of the universe. Any and all fellow travelers would be welcome, and we would be happy to provide two way transportation to any of the universe's luminaries, philosophers, leaders, scientists, authors, etc. who didn't have a TARDIS of their own. BYOB of course.
As for insurance, we'd probably choose Progressive's PLPD... after all, even the worst driver can avoid an accident if they can go back 15 minutes before it happens.
We weren't the only Brain Paraders to choose the TARDIS. Check out the I Want to be a Spaceman Brain Parade to see what some pillars of the SF blogosphere had to say. We look forward to more Brain Parades to come, and hope that the gang at Meme Therapy keeps the good stuff coming.