Bob Dylan knew the world was heading for major changes, even in 1964, a time today’s young people would consider ancient history. http://www.ilike.com/artist/Bob+Dylan/track/The+Times+They+Are+A-Changin‘
While technological advances have greatly enhanced our quality of living, say for instance high-powered washing machines as opposed to the wringer type my mother used, the sad truth remains our grandchildren and great grandchildren will be born into a world far different than ours…our lifetimes as remote as horse and buggy days.
A recent article ( http://finance.yahoo.com/family-home/article/111745/things-babies-born-in-2011-will-never-know) bemoans the fact children born in 2011 will cock an eyebrow to terms we took for granted and kids will ask the question, “Mommy, what’s a dial phone?”
The upcoming generation might very well resemble an armored police officer, with communication devices, instant Internet access tools, and plugs coming out of both ears as they walk down a sidewalk, so in tune with their digital world, they fail to connect to those around them. Will we become a nation of wireless geeks?
Will children know what it was like to curl up with a good book instead of clicking on the latest download?
With so many gadgets and so little time, will children lose the ability to lie under a tree and paint the clouds with their imaginations?
With the growing disdain over what we used to consider a balanced diet, will this future generation never know the delight of coming home to freshly baked cookies?
Remember when Daddy trucked off to some mysterious place he called an office and returned just when Mom put a roast on the table? Remember how we were quizzed about our day or sent to our room when we sassed back? I wonder what the future family table will look like or if there will be such a thing as a dinner table?
I remember when VCRs first came on the market, promoting an explosion of movies available to rent or purchase. With digital television, movies can be rented at a click of a button. No discs to worry about returning.
I remember sitting around our family television and having to get up to turn the channel to one of three stations. With the advent of cable and later digital cable, viewing options are as plentiful as our overstocked grocery stores. With the high cost of movie theaters, I imagine a future where entertainment rooms will be added to the house and transferred to a home theater with the click of a button.
Even jewelry like watches and fobs will be obsolete with phones that act like alarm clocks and keep the times for all 24 time zones.
The once popular Road Atlas may be a thing of the past, too. I remember when my husband bought a new one every year and kept it in the car. Now we have a GPS that not only gives us maps, but dictates the best way to get where we’re going. Who needs an atlas when you can use the Internet, bring up even historic maps.
The list goes on.
Not that I mind the convenience of these changes. Change is good, freeing, and keeps the mind active. Yet, with every new advance something is lost. Is it any wonder we wax toward nostalgia as our hair grays and wish for the uncomplicated good old days. We feel like carrying the past on our shoulder’s like a spare tire when all these changes deflate our sense of what is good. But if we could go back, let’s be honest. Would we really want to stay there?