Wednesday, May 21, 2008
When I was a teenager, among many other things, we did just fine without VCRs, DVDs, CDs, cell phones, microwave ovens, cable TV, personal computers, palm pilots, X-Boxes, or SUVs...so, it’s accurate for me to comment: “My, how things have changed."
Fast forward, say, 30 years from now—2038—and things will have certainly changed by then, too. But I’m not talking about new generations of consumer electronics, though. The changes I’m imagining could be catastrophic...spurred by bird flu or some other pandemic, peak oil, global warming, economic crisis (stock crash, devaluation of the dollar, etc.), rising ocean levels, topsoil depletion, or perhaps the old reliable nuclear war. But more likely, it’ll be something not yet on our radar screens that renders life “as we know it” unrecognizable.
Make no mistake about it, big changes are coming. Our world will be rocked and we will be tested. How many of us know how to grow our own food and even if we did, how many could effectively protect it? Who among us knows which plants are poisonous and which are medicinal? Can any of us tend to a wound or purify water? Can we even darn a sock?
William Burroughs sez: “Bryon Gysin had the all-purpose nuclear bedtime story… the all-purpose bedtime story, in fact: Some trillions of years ago, a sloppy, dirty giant flicked grease from his finger. One of those gobs of grease is our universe on its way to the floor...”
(Think: Henry Miller meets Bukowski and Vonnegut at Sunday Mass)