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Thread: time capsule

    • Join Date: Sep 2007
    • Posts: 11

    Question time capsule

    Could you please tell me what the "time capsule" means in the following context?
    This is also from a TV drama.

    A man is regretting his racist joke he said to a friend of his friend, saying "I tend to say stupid things sometimes..."
    Then his friend, who is very angry, says "Stupid things. That's like gonna be in the time capsule for Christ's sake".

    Does it mean you must get rid of your bad habit (speaking stupid things such as racist joke)?

    Thanks in advance,


  1. Member
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Scotland
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    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 325

    Re: time capsule

    A "time capsule" is usually a box that is sealed and often buried containing items typical of the time, like newspapers, magazines or anything else that is suggested as representing life at that time.

    It's normally intended to be opened after a length of time, 25,50, 100 years so that future generations have a record.

    • Join Date: Sep 2007
    • Posts: 11

    Re: time capsule

    Hi jamiep,

    Thank you for your reply!
    I understand the original meaning of "time capsule" (I actually made it when I was younger), but I suppose this is used as a different meaning in that context...
    Derived from the original meaning, I would suppose it means "you should stop ("seal") your stupid habbit", but I am not sure.



    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 5,409

    Re: time capsule

    It's not 100% clear, but:
    what goes into a time-capsule are usually everyday items which nevertheless are iconic of the age. To say his 'stupid remark' is going into a time-capsule suggests that it is the epitome of all stupid remarks ever to be made...and will go down in history as such!

    • Join Date: Sep 2007
    • Posts: 11

    Re: time capsule

    Hi David L.,

    Thanks for your comment and I appreciate your clear explanation!
    Conversation in this drama is full of irony and sarcasm, so this line as well might imply such.

    In my language we would not use "time capsule" to express such a meaning. This is one of the most difficult aspects when learning foreign languages.

    Thank you for your help!



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