After Ebenezer Scrooge had his fateful Christmas Eve encounter with the spirit of Jacob Marley and then the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future, he vowed to change his ways and become the nicest guy in the world. He bought the Cratchits a Christmas feast and promoted his nephew. We all know that.
But that next night, suddenly another spirit visited him.
Scrooge: Another spirit! What is it now? Who are you?
Ghost: Oh, don’t worry. I’m just here to have you rate your experience with the Past, Present, and Future Ghosts. Would you say you were satisfied with their overall message? What parts of your experience stood out the most for you?
Scrooge: Hmm, hard to pick just one. But perhaps it was what the Ghost of Christmas Future showed me that was the most eye-opening.
Ghost: Yeah? Go on.
Scrooge: He showed me that little Tiny Tim would die, and then that I would die. If I did not change my ways.
Ghost: Alright. Is that all?
Scrooge: It was devastating to my very core.
Ghost: So you have made changes in your life that should prevent these things from happening?
Scrooge: I believe so.
Ghost: It’s just that, well, you’re still going to die eventually no matter what you do. People might actually be mourning you when it does happen if you’re kinder, but you’ll still be dead.
Scrooge: Oh. Well, what of Tiny Tim? At least he’ll have a full life if I pay to have him cured.
Ghost: I wouldn’t count on it. I mean, it’s like 1830, and while it’s not clear what exactly he even has, it seems like some degenerative disease that no one can really do anything about anyway.
Scrooge: So you’re saying what the third Ghost showed me was all going to happen for sure? I asked if these were the things that will be or what may be, and he did not answer. He did not say anything actually.
Ghost: Yeah, that one isn’t actually able to speak. But I’ll make a note of that you did not get your question answered.
Scrooge: This is unbelievable! I went through all that with the Ghosts only to find there’s nothing I can do.
Ghost: That’s not exactly true. You should still be a good person as you’ve vowed to do. You’ll have friends and all. You won’t be so alone. You’ll have fun. That’s what’s important, right?
Next day, Ebenezer Scrooge returns to being a miserly asshole, and dies the following year. No one comes to his funeral because they’re over at Tiny Tim’s funeral.