The Good Old Days?

April 1st, 2006
by Alfonso Ebanks

[private] v4-4-Our Islands I cannot remember all the many times I have heard people wishing they could turn back the clock to a time when life was more joyous and everything was much less complicated. Nearly every time I’ve heard someone refer to the past they always mention the good old days and how things have changed since they were kids.

As we all know, change is inevitable and we must maintain the ability to adjust our lives to new environments and new situations.

These days, changes come very fast, especially in technology; before we can get used to one device something better or smaller and more complicated appears to replace it. Some of the modern accoutrements we are now loaded down with can at times have negative effects on our lives.

If I had to pick a single technological device that has had the most effect on our lives, I would have to choose the television set. From its very inception it has had a great impact on family life. A TV set informs the family, it entertains the family and whenever it’s turned on the family becomes completely oblivious to their surroundings.

Their attention is focused completely on that flashing and chattering box. For many years the television has been the most anti-social apparatus in the home but lately other devices such as personal music dispensers have joined it. Now, the TV set plays another role in our lives: it seems to be the place to look for fashion and other social customs and behaviors.

If you find your son with his head tightly wrapped in a piece of his mother’s old nightgown cut in strips so it hangs down his neck, if his baseball cap is turned crosswise on his head, if he tends to walk on tiptoes and have an unprecedented repugnance to any kind of work, just remember that he got all that from the TV set and he’s only being cool.

Have you noticed that kids no longer make an attempt to learn to play a musical instrument? In the good old days a good guitar player had prestige and a good singer had the girls looking his way, but all that has changed. Even the girls have changed; their attitudes towards boys are quite different than in the good old days and they no longer look for a good looking, clean-cut boy with talent and ambition. Now a girl seems to overlook the fact that the boy she is going out with is plain ugly, he wears beads in his hair under his headgear and his clothes are at least 10 sizes too large. Yep, you guessed it, she learned all that from the TV set, and you must understand that if she took exception to his weird getup she would not be cool.

Well we can’t go back to the good old days and we must remember that today will someday be the good old days for our kids. I guess we will have to content ourselves with the things that have not changed and let the kids go on being cool or chilling or keeping frosty with their devices slung around their necks. We’ll just have to find someplace to sit and contemplate quietly and hope that someday our children will find time to consider more natural things and learn to appreciate more the mysterious circumstance of just being alive. [/private]

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