Friday, April 25, 2008

Friday Five

I’m not a member of the RevGalBlogPals, but I often read their Friday Five. This one was especially intriguing.

Singing Owl posed some questions:

An Old Versus Modern (Postmodern?) Friday Five

Yesterday I had two separate conversations in which people were musing about how much change is occurring. The WW II generation, of which my mom is a part, went from horse and buggy to automobiles, saw the lessening, or even the end of many diseases, went from widespread use of kerosene lamps and outhouses (in the country, and most folks were rural)) to a totally electrified and plumbed society. The fastest means of communication was a telegraph. The second conversation--gulp--was about MY generation and how much change occurred in the last half of the 20th century. The person said his 13 year old had not seen a vinyl record album until a few days before, couldn't remember a time without cell phones, and on and on.

As for the questions!

1. What modern convenience/invention could you absolutely, positively not live
Diane, at Faith in Community, asked what exactly do we mean by “modern.” That, really, is a good question. Since I was in a third world country last year for three weeks, I saw that I take some things for granted and that they had some things I didn’t expect, like cell phones but not land lines.

Since I lived for 3 ½ months last year without running water and a working sewer system, I obviously CAN do without them, but I was able to use other modern items to compensate. But I would say that I couldn’t do without a sit-down-indoor-toilet for very long. I barely managed that during the time in Africa.

I also would miss motorized travel, i.e., my car, terribly. I don’t want a horse.

As for what we may think of as the more modern things, I really love having the internet, both for emailing acquaintances all over the world, and also because I love looking things up any time I want to. But, I lived nearly 5 decades without this, so I guess I could “do without” the internet.

I also think of my son who would not be alive without modern antibiotics which he had to be given when he was tiny.

2. What modern convenience/invention do you wish had never seen the light of day?

Why? Items themselves (except for bombs) are neutral, but how we use them can be the problem. Cell phones have helped keep my adult children’s friends in touch during very difficult times, but they also seem to make the kids more dependent. Game boy, game box, etc. seemed ok, but they helped our son put up a wall between himself and us when he lived at home. Satellite TV and IPods give us specific entertainment, but, in some ways, break down connections between people.

3. Do you own a music-playing device older than a CD player? More than one? If
so, do you use it (them)?
I think we might still have our turn table somewhere, but it isn’t hooked up. We have several tape players. I don’t use that, but my husband likes it better for certain things than a CD player. I don’t like earphones, so I’m not into IPods, etc, but I also rarely used the older devices with earphones either.

4. Do you find the rapid change in our world exciting, scary, a mix...or something
I like technology, so many of the new things interest me, except the IPod stuff. The scary part is the way the politicians use the media to sway us. But I guess that is nothing new.

5. What did our forebears have that we have lost and you'd like to regain? Bonus
points if you have a suggestion of how to begin that process.

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