Saturday, April 9, 2011

Moments

Just a random thought before I head out to my son's baseball game.

In years past, there were no means for capturing a moment for looking back on it.  We witnessed something incredible firsthand, and we could only tell the story and hope others believed us.  The first thing that changed was the advent of photography.  But when it came to dynamic moments, or events, it wasn't until sound recording came about, and later, radio and then television.  But even with these, it wasn't practical for the average person to do their captures of moments and events.  So we still held onto the value of an interesting moment.

Then came cheaper personal cameras, video cameras, tape recorders, and all the way to today with DVR's, cell phones with cameras, and the secondary mediums of online sharing.

Stepping back and observing the impact of all this is tough, but from my own personal view it seems we've somewhat devalued the precious nature of an impromptu moment.  We're becoming relaxed and comfortable in the expectation that even if we miss the opportunity to capture some interesting event, that someone else likely took care of that.

The moment that seems to universally snap younger folks into reality these days is the passing of someone close to them.  We're now so busy occupying ourselves with mundane social activities in order to distract ourselves from our own mortality that when mortality knocks at the door, it stuns them.  I don't think mortality had as dramatic of an impact on the psyche of our ancestors back in the early 1900's as it does now.  Our technology and social interests seem to be widing a gap between reality and comfort.  In the process we've lost some of the appreciation for what a small moment in any given day really means.  If you ask someone who has survived a difficult ordeal like Cancer, they will likely understand what I'm saying.  Then again, maybe it's just that I'm getting older and slowing down a little more every day.

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