Posted on January 4, 2012
by Russell Gayer
Guest blogger Rachel Crofton is back. Yesterday, she read Madison Woods’ blog http://madisonwoods.wordpress.com/ and started badgering me to let her post a commentary. Rachel is not a woman of few words, so we had to break it into two or three pieces. Enjoy ~ Russell
Modern Inconveniences – part 1
That loud, off-key, screeching noise you sometimes hear, is me singing the praises of modern science and technology. I’m extremely grateful for all the wonderful appliances, gadgetry, and software aps that have been developed to make my life easier and more comfortable.
They even have artificial intelligence now, which I am told is no match natural born stupidity. It may be in its infancy, but you can be assured scientists will keep working on it until they perfect a version that can write Russell’s blog for him. After all, how much intelligence could that take?
But everything comes with a price—and not just money. What are some of the things we have sacrificed to enjoy the benefits of a “new and better way?” Why are we obsessed with speed? Does faster always mean better?
In today’s society, people are forever in a mad dash from spot to another. If we can shave a few seconds off here and there, then we can cram in more activities, making our lives fuller, thus generating greater happiness, right?
Those of us who have celebrated more than one anniversary of our 39th birthday can remember full-service gas stations. This concept was based on the businessowner’s perception that the customer was “king.” When a car pulled up to the pumps, an attendant would come running out, ask you how much gas you wanted, check under the hood, wash the windshield, put air in the tires, and change the baby’s diaper. The driver left, feeling secure in a safe, well maintained vehicle with a dry baby and a fist full of Green Stamps.
Today’s drivers pull into a convenience store, slam on the brakes, set the stop watch on their iPhone, slide a credit card at the pump, fill the tank, hop back in the car, peel out of the parking lot and check the timer. Anything under four minutes is considered good. Three and a half or less and you’re a superstar.
Upon returning to the highway, our hero becomes stuck in traffic only to move forward one car length at a time. Rather ironic, don’t you think?
I miss (S&H?) Green Stamps! Haha, had forgotten all about them, too, until you reminded me.
Daddy owned an Esso (better known as Exxon) station when I was a kid. My older brother worked there summers. Many gallons of gas did he pump, looked under hundreds of hoods, and washed many windshields, all with an award winning smile. I can't remember if Daddy gave green stamps or not. But I did run around with a "tiger tail" sticking out of my gas tank. Thanks for the trip down memory lane, Russell.