The Price Of Progress

Technology is a wonderful thing. It allows each new generation to do things only dreamed of in the past. It transforms the way we work and live, making each easier and more comfortable. Yet, as with everything else in life, there are costs associated with this progress. And while the overall effect is positive, innovation does come with drawbacks.

An example of this can be found in the cellphone. On the one hand, cellphones have revolutionized personal communication and given us increased freedom and convenience. On the other hand, face to face communication has suffered as a result of many people choosing to spend so much of their time on their cellphone while in public. People will even talk on their phones while having dinner with someone.

One could site many other examples of the drawbacks of progress, but I am only concerned with one in particularly here. It is something that had no occurred to me until I had a child. But now that I do, I realize I will be facing it practically every day until Doodle grows up, maybe longer.

The problem, of course, is that I don’t have any good “When I was your age…” stories with which to regale Doodle. This is something previous generations didn’t have to worry about. Sure, they might not have had air conditioning, and they had to get vaccinated for smallpox, but they got the chance to tell their kids how easy they had it compared to the old days. What possible guilt trip could I lay on the Doodlebop? Sure, the Atari 2600 was pretty lame when compared to the Wii, but that just seems a bit weak.

1 Comment

  1. My stepfather used to give me such stories of roughing it as a child. In junior high, I began to understand that he was trying to motivate me from sleeping on Saturdays with such stories of “growing up on a farm” and “walking every where on dirt roads.” I asked his mother the truth one Sunday afternoon, and she said that he was the laziest kid in the neighborhood and they never lived on a farm. My point is that as we try to motivate our children or explain to them our childhood then yes we should say we had to deal with 8bit video games as they will always have a greater respect for a father who “levels with them” and speaks the truth.

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