The song “When You Wish Upon a Star,” made famous by Disney’s movie adaptation of Pinocchio, begins:
“When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you”
Assuming wishes travel at the speed of light
and assuming wishes can’t traverse wormholes
and assuming it’s the star itself which grants the wish
(and not some huckster or philanthropist)
and assuming the wish-granting thing returns at the speed of light
(or close to it).
Chances are you’ll be long dead by the time your wish gets granted.
Unless you had the good sense to wish on a nearby star
but even the nearest star is 4.2 light years away
so it would take at least 8.4 years for you to get your wish.
But there’s hope:
The Sun is a star.
Wish on it!
(But don’t look directly at it
unless you’re wishing for new eyes.)
Then you’ll only have to wait about 17 minutes
but don’t get your hopes up.
There’s not much evidence for this working
but feel free to do the experiment.
Photo credit: The photo of Proxima Centauri (and lots of other stars) is public domain.