Posts Tagged ‘human

11
Aug
14

They Don’t Make ‘Em Like They Used To

Have you ever heard someone say that about some machine, toy, phone, “doodad” or gizmo? You know…the title of this piece. It’s something I haven’t heard myself in a while. But, that’s just because I am no longer a kid surrounded by elderly folks. Those who said it to me have passed on, already. But, the message still rings true now and then.

There was a time not too long ago when adults of the ’60s looked at the toys and technology of the ’80s–particularly television sets–and said, “They sure don’t make them like they used to.” This was shortly after Americans took a break from bitching about the “China-men” making inferior products. But, even today, if you listen to some of these millionaire business types, where would they be if they didn’t have their production lines overseas? Not too long ago, there was a big stink being raised about lead paint on toys. Lead paint; something I haven’t heard about since childhood when there was considerable concern about kids eating paint chips from older houses. [But, if you get me started on lead paint and the Chinese labor force working for the U.S.A., we’ll be here all week.]

The point I am slowly trying to make is…

If you look at modern technology–everything from lawn equipment to household appliances to your “newfangled” flat TVs and razor-thin-ready-to-snap-at-any-moment computers–you don’t see many–if any–lifetime warranties. You’re lucky if you get a five-year warranty. What amazes me is how some manufacturers will avoid a fuss and let you have a replacement (sometimes at an additional expense even if it’s considerably smaller).

Back when, replacements didn’t come so easily. You didn’t trade in a $100+ phone made from nuclear waste that does everything from flash a light under your bed to manage your banking/spending every two years. You bought a phone that plugged into the wall and was glad it was still working when the power went out. Now, you drop your “phone” (and I use the term lightly) in a puddle or on the sidewalk (because you have to have it with you at all times), and you’re lucky if you aren’t forking over another $200+ for a replacement.

[You see how the price shot up in just a few years? There was a time when you expected a fairly standard price for a phone. The technology didn’t change in two years, and what you had worked just fine if you didn’t take it outside and throw/drop it everywhere, you klutzes. AND, your hand didn’t vibrate or glow in the dark after holding your phone for a few hours. Okay, so maybe I am exaggerating about the hand glowing in the dark.]

There was a time when you bought something with little fear of it not working in as many as ten years or more. You trusted a name that built a reputation for itself. You trusted the materials with which the item was made.

There was a time not so long ago when cash was so scarce, they called it the Great Depression, and countless lives were in financial jeopardy. Back then, they didn’t have “smart phone plans” to worry about. They didn’t even have video entertainment. How in the world did they live?!…you kids might ask. Well, I am fairly sure there was probably the same business scheming going on then as it is today. It just came under a different label as it drove people broke. But, whatever it was, I am sure it lasted the people a few more years than a computer telling its user, “It’s been two years. Replace me.”

You know what piece of technology hasn’t changed much since the dawn of time? Mankind. We may have lost some hair and body mass (ha). We may have learned to stand up straighter and use different words now and then. We may have changed the way we eat our food, dress and clean ourselves. We probably earned a longer life expectancy from working less and sitting on those asses people have been pointing and shaking their heads at, lately. But, we can be just as dumb as our ancestors.

How dumb are we? Well, we’re so dumb that we will slap anything on our skin or trust another human being to make us look young, “pretty” or “handsome.” We’re so dumb that we take pills as directed by other humans only to suffer side-effects we should have seen coming (but we didn’t…because we’re so dumb). We’re so dumb that we will burn a plant in our mouths or wash one down our throats to fight stress only to risk the lives of others around us and put that stress on our bodily organs, anyway. We’re so dumb that we move just like cattle as we chase the latest things because the ones someone stopped making last summer are now obsolete.

Can you replace your grandparents or siblings so easily? I think not. No matter what insurance policy you buy, pill you take or defense system you install, you don’t have a lifetime warranty or even a two-year warranty. Your number could be up tomorrow. [That’s another fairly old piece of lingo, by the way. Your number being up. For those of you born after the cellphone, it means “you could die.”]

So, the next time you think about buying some new gadget, trinket or Macintablet or reach for a fresh (or freshly charged) battery pack, remember what ol’ Writingbolt just told you. You can either drain your bank account (which was filled with your life force applied to that thing called work…of whatever kind you employ) every few years chasing stupidity. Or, you can wise up and rethink the way this world appears to be going. Buy something more reliable. And, invest in those around you who are worth more than any self-destructing wireless “life-distactor.”

Maybe it’s time we all slowed down to think instead of trying to be the one who throws him or herself into a wall the fastest. Yeah. That sounds dumb. Just give it time. I’m sure it’s out there on YouBoobTube, already. And, it’s getting a billion hits.

There was a time when hits were something your older brother…

10
Jul
14

What Is Human Nature? We May Never Know

The human being is so complex. After thousands of years, we still do not know its limits or greatest potential. And, yet, man continues to taint and tamper with nature–including the environment and the body itself–with countless pollutants. How can we ever grasp human nature when it’s perpetually contaminated?

In pursuit of science, like the temptation for girls to strip down their dress-up dolls and smear them with graffiti instead of appreciating the creation as it is made, humans spoil the opportunity to understand each other and themselves. And yet, even when it’s not considered scientific research/testing, humans take chances with what surrounds/appears before them, like a school kid in a cold winter city daring to stick his tongue to a flag pole in the middle of a deep freeze. Are we no better now than the cavemen or natives who had to determine which berries were safe to eat?

What if all our “advancements” are nothing more than alternative routes to the same malfunction under a different trending name? What if we could do better by buying into less, not relying on products and services to pamper us and simply observing our surroundings and instincts (not our impulses/temptations) more often? What if we are wasting SO much time, energy and resources on experiments that all ultimately fail to do anything more than temporarily alter our outlook on what is inevitable? [Meanwhile, buyers fill the pockets they do not possess with seemingly (the previous being the key word) endless money and/or power. And, countless others either starve or squander their souls to cheat someone for their hasty, short-sighted benefit, simply because humans fail to work together.]

If you were to imagine yourself as an alien/outsider (saving the expense of crafting and sending some gizmo into deep space to reach out to the unknown which may only end up as more space garbage), employed to survey and sum up the nature of human beings, which of the following would you choose to voice your opinion?

1) “The human being is a constantly changing and viciously circling chemical trip, similar to what they call a roller coaster, a ride intended for amusement which goes in a loop, stirring emotions while risking bouts with hysteria and/or nausea. They change the shape of the track, affecting the range and pattern of reaction, but it’s still just a loop.”

2) “The human being is the bud of the (yet unknown name) flower, like a tadpole precedes a frog. Given time, the evolved form will earn the ego the human perceives to be deserved and become the rightful dominant species of the planet Earth without any capacity for war, experimentation, disease and/or segregation.”

01
Jul
14

We Come in Peace-suit of Taking Your Planet

We’re pursuing space exploration and migration…er, domination of other worlds (like the very aliens we’re told to fear in movies) yet we don’t have ideal control of/peace on our own present home world. What sense does this make?

When we think of air travel these days, we run into little warnings of immunizations and all sorts of other concerns we should take before venturing even on what is supposed to be a pleasant but temporary holiday/vacation. Why do I get the feeling there are far less concerns about venturing into deep space and recreating the Native American massacre and/or African enslavement just for the satisfaction of some restless humans with a closet case of claustrophobia? I’m not entirely content with what’s going on here on Earth, myself. But, I don’t think it’s at all wise or sensible to just start pouring all this money and resources into chasing a hoop dream on some other planet which is surely occupied by those content to have a planet without invaders.

Most importantly we must NOT repeat our past mistakes (as mentioned above if you missed them). Otherwise, our disgusting aspects won’t just be an Earth problem/bad memory. They’ll be a galactic one. I, for one, have no desire to live out the clone wars, the dawn of the terminator/machine or any number of dystopian/bleak/frightening possibilities our strange minds invent. And, I’d rather interact with other species peacefully. But, presently, humanity is unable to do that as the dominant species of this world.

Let’s clean up our mess and make what we have liveable. When that happens, I’m sure other space travelers who aren’t hampered by past vices will be happy to greet and interact with us. Or, we’ll avoid bringing our diseases–hopefully–to other worlds.

What about you, reader? What’s your take on this?

25
Feb
14

It’s So Sad When You Don’t Know Where to Turn

It’s nothing new, but, upon either going to bed last night or waking this morning, I had a low moment.  And, in this moment, I pondered the weight of discomfort from not having someone with whom I can feel completely comfortable and share my deepest thoughts in the same living space.

Now, for those of you with your heads wired to some digital gizmo like a PC or–more likely these days–a “pad” or “smart phone”, don’t get your brain coils in a pinch.  For some if not most of you, this space right here is where you turn to divulge your deepest thoughts.  This is your breathing room, your therapist couch, your venting space.  You probably have more (Fbook) friends than those you can actually pat on the back and visit with when you’re blue.  For you, this may be a living space.  But, not for me.  This is almost the equivalent of talking to someone through a styro-foam cup phone.  ‘Don’t know what that is?  Look it up.

While it may seem like I am venting, I am but scratching the surface of my brewing, stewing emotions, my volcano of internal conflict that cannot decide which way is up and who to trust.  When you can’t trust your own family and don’t have at least one friend you can sit down with for more than an hour a week, you may find yourself “spinning tires” and wondering what really is right from wrong.  Often I question myself along similar lines.

[I may have written some of this before.]  In my youth, I thought I was always doing right.  At least, I did my best to be good and make my parents proud.  But, beyond my consciousness, there were those who kept pointing at me and telling me what I did wrong.  And, no matter how I tried to remedy the situation, I couldn’t get it right.  Was I simply disobeying instructions?  Was I a rebellious child who needed to be disciplined?  I didn’t think so then.  And, I’d like to think there was/is more to it even now.  But, something denied and occasionally continues to deny me the right to be right in the eyes of others.

Starting probably in high school, I began to distrust people and shed my optimistic naivete.  I began to realize reputations were often lies cooked up to make/demand more money.  I stopped buying into brand names and started scrambling to find my own unique path.  Pretty soon, it seemed no one was left to trust.  Nearly everyone used the same words (I didn’t like) and didn’t seem to care if what they did or said upset me.  Some even snickered and chided me for reacting defensively.  I wasn’t about to trust people who snickered at me when I was upset. 
It’s probably gotten worse over time, the nagging question of trust.  What (commercials) do I believe and which do I just brush aside?  Who’s selling a scam, and who’s trying to offer genuine help?  [I know I’ve made my share of stupid financial decisions, already.  And, I don’t want to continue the trend.]

On top of all this, the judgement of others has influenced MY judgement of others.  I am fairly certain being critiqued and questioned much–if not most–of my life has made me a judge/critic o others.  It’s like carbon dioxide spewing from my mouth.  I don’t consciously take pleasure in it.  But, it happens like breathing.  And, only with aging and deep reflection do I comprehend the reactions of many I meet.  I wouldn’t be too comfortable around someone critiquing my decisions/choices every day.  If they don’t accept me as I am, I know I’ll be on guard/defensive.  However, I think I am possibly more tolerant than some I meet who are quick to turn silent and distance themselves.  I think.

I went through elementary school with a handful of those I’d call friends.  I was lucky if two stuck by me for more than two years.  One did stand by me for nearly ten years before we lost touch.  I went through high school lucky if I had one friend who stood by me for a year.  Every following year, it seemed people changed, and I once more found myself grasping for a life preserver.  As I got out of school and into the working world, making friends became even harder.  There might not have been as much gossip going around, but it was (and has been) difficult to socialize with anyone without some supervisor/boss finding fault with this.  Take it outside of work?  I’d sure like to do that.  But, I can’t seem to find the right words to convince anyone to try it.  No, I was lucky if I could talk at work.  Anything more was cutting into their time with other people.  Or, I didn’t/don’t fit their “circle” (age group).

So, here I sit, with a number of tasks stacked on my “to do” list and little to no “stamina” to see them through “simply” because I feel the need to have some…support (sort of like a small child counting on their parent/s to be there for them) and/or companionship.  And, every day I don’t tackle one of those items, I feel guilty.  I feel lousy.  I endure tension in my body which clamps a vice on my elbow and tightens my breath.  I look around me and tremble, wondering who I should chance speaking with about what’s bothering me.

Then, I look at the computer and think back to all the years I already spent on the thing hoping to make better connections with people far from home.  On top of paying an internet service bill, my eyes have paid for my time here.  And, what do I have to show for it?  Some foggy, bittersweet memories of people who would mean nothing to those I deal with on a daily basis face-to-face. 

I listen to/read/watch the local news and try not to absorb all of the negative, frightful and discouraging crap that goes on here and in other parts of the world.  [I don’t enjoy it but need to stay informed lest I be completely unaware when some important stranger knocks at my door over something I missed.  It’s better (for me) than trying to scan a tiny screen flooding my hands with battery “heat” and wireless transmissions and waiting for my eyes to cross.]

I worry–one of these days–someone is going to come along and pack my life up in a heap or stack of boxes, leaving what’s left of me in the dust with no redeeming sense of satisfaction.  I worry I’m either going to end up homeless, starving and mad…or locked away somewhere because I failed to follow some procedure which was intended to create order even though it upset my soul and the souls of so many others I may encounter.  I worry what the future may bring as stupid humans chase their whims with little to no respect for who is involved/affected by them.  It’s like watching two infants fight over a toy.

Part of me hopes everything will work out for the best (including my best), and that all my worries will be smoothed out by reassurances I simply had to age to find.  Another part of me anticipates some drastic disaster (or prolonged waste of time and resources) that will turn this world into one of those futuristic, dystopian movie settings with robots running amok and people fighting in filthy streets for the last scrap of food or clean water.  If you want my opinion on the possibilities of alien life/worlds and making contact with them, I’d say the aliens should–and probably do–keep their distance until Earth straightens itself out (unless they have the strategy/means humans fail continually to find/establish, the ideal road to mutually beneficial compromise and teamwork without competition over money and/or land).  Otherwise, they risk becoming the next batch of slaves (by feeding human greed) or starting another senseless war (by being viewed as a threat).  Just like those who get divorced struggle (well, some struggle while others jump right into another hot mess) to shed the baggage of the past and start anew, I am not sure the aliens could presently handle Earth’s baggage if they hope(d) to start a friendship.

Some of you out there (here) might come from “broken families” and find it “easy” to take command of your own lives…because you “have to” to survive.  You might not like it, but you see no other alternative to calling hotlines and consulting complete strangers for assistance.  But, for me, growing up with the confusion I did and feeling burned by those I “had to” trust early on, it’s excruciating (like an elderly person who can no longer stand with ease trying to go to the bathroom alone) for me to take those chances.  I don’t multi-task well.  I forget things and miss details when something unexpected suddenly overwhelms and preoccupies my mind.  I fight the forces that drive others to suicide almost daily.  [But, in the end, I may have no choice.  Yet, people say, “There’s always a choice.”  And, I wonder…]




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