From Sarah, With Joy

*Poet * Author * Wanderluster*

Monday, May 28, 2012

Oh the things we have

Last night the fam and I drove to Salt Lake to see my great grandparent's graves. They were pretty awesome people, and one of the best examples of a perfect couple I've ever seen. On the way back we were listening to the 40's XM station and talking and my mom told us about my dad trying to explain the internet to her almost 20 years ago and how incomprehensible it was and how she didn't see the point of it and what it would be like to show an iPhone to people 75 years ago. Isn't it incredible, what we have? The things we are capable of doing? The developments that have happened just in the last 5 years?

And look at how all this has totally changed the publishing industry. Well, the entertainment industry as a whole. 30, 40 years ago there weren't twenty bajillion different channels and shows to choose from. There were, like, 4. Those were the ones everybody watched. We still have popular shows that get a pretty general viewership, but its changed to more of a wide variety each with a loyal camp of viewers type set-up. Which I'm okay with.

Same with books. Back then it was either you were An Author who had made it big and the publishers took care of you and made sure you were read, or you just, weren't an author. Now anyone can be an author, and manage their career at various degrees of success and popularity. How many people make a living off writing that I've never heard of? Probably a lot. In a way that's a very hopeful thought. We have way more options to make things work for ourselves. Sure its more complicated, but to me its worth the trade-off.

You know, I think its false to think that just because certain things may have been simpler a long time ago, that they were easier. (We've all seen Midnight in Paris, right? Right?). They had their own challenges and issues, not easier or harder, just different. Maybe they had it harder getting from one place to another and less medicine and more disease, but I think if they saw the stress and craziness we deal with today, I'm not sure they'd want a trade. I mean, they also had more open fields and less obesity and pollution. But then, we've got electric guitars and microwave ovens.

So its not really fair to say one period or time is better or worse than another. (Unless you're talking the 1340's. That can probably be called worse than...ever.) They're just different. Thinking our age is worse takes the joy out of all the amazing things we have, and we do, but thinking it's better keeps us narrow-minded and open to repeating histories mistakes.

Enjoy today and learn from yesterday. I think that's all we can do, really, and I think its what our great-grandparents and great-great-grandparents would tell us to do if they could.

Happy Memorial Day.

Sarah Allen


  1. Very cool and thoughtful! Hoping to get back to blogging again and getting Seconhand Shoes out there. I've got a lot to learn.

  2. It's amazing how many choices we have every day, a lot of them because of technology, compared to people only 3 or 4 generations back.

  3. I absolutely love this post. I think you bring up a lot of great points. Perhaps things seem simpler back then, but we have advantages of our more complicated society as well.

  4. i am sure that is what our grandparents would say---nice post

  5. I like the optimism in your post - I sometimes have a bleaker view, but I've been schooled not to share it!

  6. Very reflective post. One thing I continually find amazing is that my SD card for my camera has 800 times the memory of my first PC 20 years ago!! And growing up in the 60's...from our grainy B&W TV with "rabbit" ears to my new shiny 51" plasma that's only 2" thick, how crazy would THAT seem to an Austin Powers type person??

    I think overall the biggest shift )and not always for the best) is our growing inability to accept delayed gratification. You want? Go to the internet, order it, two-three days later it's at your door. Barely any time to anticpate how excited you'll be when the item arrives. And if it's a day late? Oh My God...the world has ended.

    Kids and young adults have grown up never knowing the value of time in "earning" something. Six year olds with cell phones and credit cards??? Wow.

  7. This is a really great post. I'm always amazed at what we have especially compared to how life used to be. Thanks for sharing - glad I found your blog.

  8. Such a beautiful post! I love the time period we live in (well, most of the time), but it's amazing how different it was a hundred or fifty or even twenty years ago.


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