Friday, 16 October 2015

October 16, 2015 Chautauqua

Beth's Ponderings

   Aren’t you glad we live in the 21st century with all of our gadgets and technology?

   Just imagine how difficult - in fact, practically impossible - it would be for us to complete so many of our daily tasks if we didn’t have our umpteen modern appliances and gadgets.

  Yet, “Labour-saving machinery only creates endless and worse labour.” - J.R.R. Tolkien 

  Don’t believe me, then ask yourself this...what are our lives really like now with all this technology?

  Yes, it took all day to wash clothes by hand in a hot tub of water, with a scrub brush and scrub board, however, there was less to wash.  The average family - even if there were a lot of children - generally had one good outfit (Sunday, parties, weddings, or funerals) and their every day outfit (which they wore more than one day in a row!) and a work/chore outfit.  So, while it looks like we’ve gained with our washing machines and dryers, complete with all the latest bells and whistles, we haven’t really as we just stuff our closets, and then those washing machine, with more and more clothes.  Laundry is an endless task now, as we spend more time washing some outfits than we do actually wearing them!  

   The same is true of our homes.  It used to be possible to completely clean a home with a pail of water, a scrub brush and a broom.  Once vacuum cleaners became the norm, and now our Swiffers and the like, our homes have gotten larger and larger.  It is almost like we needed to justify having the convenience, and thus complicated our lives more.

   And, let’s not forget telephones!  Gone are the days when you had to walk next door to talk to your neighbour.  Do any of you remember when we used to get into the car (or sneak into the bathroom) to get away from the ringing phone?  Now phones are everywhere, and are considered so vital to existence, for more than just talking to someone. 

   Technology, in and of itself, isn’t bad.  It does help us in numerous ways and makes life easier.  Yet, we have, as a society, negated so many of those benefits by filling our lives so full of stuff and information.


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