Rantings of An Old Man

by Dennis

I have a few issues I wish to talk about before they sedate me, restrain me, and pipe “It’s gonna be a bright sunshiny day” into my room non-stop 24/7. I can’t figure out people’s fascination with and desire for new devices. I’ll take automobiles as an example. We have cars today that not only tell you how fast you’re going, the heat of the engine and oil pressure, but the distance you came, the distance you have to go, if the doors are locked, the pressure in each tire, the number of passengers with or without their seat belts locked, the temperature outside and inside the car, how many miles you can go before you need to stop for gas, what direction you’re heading in, when you will need to turn and in what direction, and so much more that my head is swimming.

Remember when you could get a free street map at a gas station? Remember when gas stations were called service stations? Remember service? Not food or drink or bathroom cleaners, newspapers or lotto tickets – just gas and oil. But I digress.

It has been said by someone more eloquent than I that our morality has never kept pace with our technology. I remember being my parents T.V. remote control – “Dennis change the station, or volume, up or down.” I remember the dawn of the atomic age, the weapon that saved hundreds of thousands of lives now held millions at risk. I remember hiding under my school desk in mock air raid drills, not knowing that by doing so I would not be vaporized in the first seconds of blast, but rather five seconds later. I remember the electric knife, electric can opener, even toothbrush. I resisted getting a microwave oven for many years, and when I finally relented, refused to be in the same room as it when it was operating.

This is the age of Viagra, liberating creams, AIDS, and the morning after pill. GPS, HDTV, 3G or4G networks, PayPal, Xbox, Cash for Gold, Tempurpedic, Gene splicing, artificial hearts.

All for the better I’m told. Morality may never catch up with technology or even keep pace with it. If we rely on companies that claim that progress is their most important product, or better through chemistry.

My mother used to say, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth” (to determine its age) but perhaps that is not a bad idea. Just ask the people of Troy if they had it to over. Remember the life you save may be mine, or your very own.

August, 2012

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