Infinite Menus, Copyright 2006, OpenCube Inc. All Rights Reserved.
In This Together: An ode to those who explore, discover and improve
by LOUISE R. SHAW
Apr 14, 2014 | 2576 views | 0 0 comments | 44 44 recommendations | email to a friend | print
One of today's amazing advances, cell phones, allow us to capture and share moments such as this one, where Northridge High students immortalize the visit of Olympian Noelle Pikus-Pace.  Photo by Louise R. Shaw | Davis Clipper
One of today's amazing advances, cell phones, allow us to capture and share moments such as this one, where Northridge High students immortalize the visit of Olympian Noelle Pikus-Pace. Photo by Louise R. Shaw | Davis Clipper
slideshow
I just bought a watermelon. Even though it’s barely April and it’s just recently been snowing, there were watermelons in the store.

And that’s not the only reason I’m feeling very, very fortunate to be alive right at this very minute and in this very time and place.

Also because I can find the answer to virtually any earthly question in a matter of seconds and because I can call someone from virtually anywhere anytime and can resize a headline with the click of a mouse rather than rewriting it.

I remember when that wasn’t the case.

Before Google and cell phones and InDesign, there were encyclopedias at the library and telephones attached by a cord to your wall and headlines that had to be the perfect size before they were pasted on with wax.

Lots of people don’t remember those Neanderthal days. Lots of other people remember the deprivations that preceded them.

Some might even remember having to grow their own watermelons that ripened, if they grew at all, in the fall. And had seeds.

While we’re at it, some might remember the days when it was an all-too-real possibility that you could contract polio or a bad case of mumps.

And how certain little things like infections could become very big very fast.

Some might remember the days when travel was more difficult or more expensive than it is now.

Or the day when we were responsible for manually changing the gears in our cars with the help of a clutch.

It wasn’t all that long ago that women couldn’t aspire to certain responsible positions. Anyone over 80 likely had a mother who couldn’t vote.

I remember a time when there were only two kinds of M&Ms and one fast food restaurant. And if you wanted roast chicken for dinner at home you had to roast it yourself.

I know people who would not hear or could not see without the discoveries of today’s brilliant scientists. Others who would not have teeth. Others who would not still be alive.

This is an ode to the creators, the discoverers and the activists.

This is an ode to a system that is so free and allows so much incentive that so many can spend their time improving things that for thousands of years people didn’t even know needed to be improved. Or could be.

A system that makes it so that while one person is testing new combinations for Oreo cookies, another is making little rectangular devices that can take pictures and enhance them and send them with a message to friends or strangers across the world.

In case anyone is missing it, we live in a time of mind-boggling advancements.

And while I’m usually the last person to embrace them (except watermelon in spring), I’m absolutely amazed at what is there to embrace.

Maybe our grandparents and greats thought that same thing when horse-drawn buggies turned into gas-propelled cars.

Maybe our parents and grands thought that when news and entertainment came into their very own homes – eventually in color.

I thought that when a computer that took up an entire building during my college days was outdone by one that can be held – and used – by a 2-year old.

It’s grown on us slowly.

One day we’re on a computer, typing a letter to print and mail to a friend, the next we’re making hotel reservations after perusing room decor and amenities on it, or downloading photos without having them chemically processed on it.

One day we’re driving around lost, and the next day we’ve got someone with a British accent somewhere in the car with us, telling us not only when to turn, but warning us how many yards before the turn is coming and displaying a graph of the turn lane and all the streets around it. And if we mess up, the woman with the British accent is even willing to figure out a new route without getting mad.

It’s an amazing time to be alive and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Yea to the explorers and the discoverers.

Somehow I don’t think they’re done.

Comments
(0)
Comments-icon Post a Comment
No Comments Yet
Postings are not edited and are the responsibility of the author. You agree not to post comments that are abusive, threatening or obscene. Postings may be removed at the discretion of davisclipper.com
Follow us on: