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Friday, September 27, 2013

Back in My Day...

How I don't miss cassette tapes...
If you're one of those people that complain about the way things are today and claim it used to be better in the past, you might want to skip this post and move on.

Actually, no.  You're the kind of person that NEEDS to read this.

We always remember the past as better than it was, and worry that the future will be worse than we expect.  However both are rarely true.

There have always been people that have been resistant to change, whether it is to new technology, new music or new social norms.  I have a huge issue with this, as change is inevitable.  Nothing stays the same, and some people spend a lifetime attempting to ensure that it does.

BIMD: Pop music didn't suck!

This issue ranges from the superficial to the deep-rooted accepted rules that society has bestowed upon us.  If you complain about pop music but listen to classic rock, remember that your music was considered 'pop' one day.  During the late 90's and early 2000's, I was victim of this as well.  I loved 80's metal (still do!) and didn't think anything made today could ever come close to what that was.  Metallica's 2.1 million show in Moscow in 1991, or the more than 7 million that saw Guns N Roses on their Use Your Illusion tour didn't seem like it could ever be replicated and that depressed me.  I didn't really listen to any new music at all, and missed out entirely of the grunge scene in the 90's.  I did, thankfully discover it in the mid 2000's and became a huge Bush, Moist and Pearl Jam fan.  Through this realization, I finally dropped my closed minded view on new music and started giving all artists at least one chance.  Now I've discovered that I love new hard rock way more than I ever enjoyed music from the 80's.

BIMD: Musicians made music with instruments instead of a computer!

This, along with a 7 year career in the bar/restaurant service industry, allowed me to start actually enjoying some Top 40 and dance, as it is played non stop in clubs.  Which brings me to how certain individuals claim that music with an instrument is somehow more legitimate than music created electronically.  Certain things are better made by hand, with imperfections, and others are better made by machine, entirely flawless.  The thing people don't get, is that there's a market for both, and that both take a different type of skill.  A guitarist myself, lover of both rock and EDM, I feel comfortable in saying that.  Music is an expression of emotions, it doesn't have to be extremely deep and meaningful for someone to enjoy it.

Remember that when the electric guitar was invented, those same type of people complained about it, yet the innovators, the early adopters, the forward thinkers pushed through and changed the shape of music forever.  Without this new technology, we'd never have such great artists like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Chuck Berry, B.B. King or Jimmy Page.

BIMD: We picked up the phone to call people!

In just 5 years, our daily lives have changed so much with the innovation and popularity of the mobile device.  Almost everyone I know has one, and the main form of communication between friends, co-workers and family is via text message.  Before that it was instant messaging (Uh-oh! anyone?) and before that, email.  With the rise in popularity of this new communication method, some people are happy to have more time due to the convenience of it, yet others complain it's making people anti-social.  Newsflash: people that use texting as a form of communication don't just sit in their basement with the lights off doing so.  It's quite often a way to make social plans, or organize different events.

BIMD: We spent time with people instead of reading about it on Facebook!

The same people that whine about texters are probably complaining about how much they hate Facebook as well (though they all seem to still have an account...).  They claim the social interaction between people, the face time is reduced to anti-social reading, liking and posting.  If anything, social media has allowed most people to be MORE social. Learning about events you're interested in and things that your friends are doing so you can consider joining certainly isn't anti-social.  The same can be said for the idea that video games are anti-social as well.  Another post will be made in the future about this, but most video games these days have a huge multiplayer and social aspect to them, requiring you to work as a team to complete certain goals.

BIMD: We played with rocks and trees we found outside!

Yes, obesity is a problem in our children now, more than it was before.  I think the problem lies in diet and the crap we feed our kids, and not in the lack of activity, but that's an opinion and not a fact.  Some people are so violently opposed to children having any sort of technology (like an iPhone or iPad or any gaming systems) and I can't figure out why.  Apps that are designed for children to help them develop certain skills are readily available, but having the latest tech in their hands will get them used to the world that they're going to live in.  Don't think that is important? All of you know someone over the age of 40 that has trouble using a computer because they 'didn't grow up with' like we did.  If you want your kids to have a leg up on other people, and let's face it, you do or else you wouldn't have them in all the different things that you do, then get them used to this stuff.

My siblings don't have a clue how to build a web page.  I built one in Gr. 9.  Kids today are doing it in Gr. 3.  Why would you think that was a bad thing? To have kids smarter and smarter at a younger age is clearly beneficial to them and society as a whole.  I'm sure that studies will surface eventually that early development in areas like this will reduce the onset of different brain deterioration diseases like Alzheimer's and dementia.

BIMD: We worked hard and shut up and did what we were told!

That's the problem though.  Everyone were robots.  We lived by a set of rules and morals (mostly derived from religious ones) that dictated our lives, contained our true selves and shamed us into being a certain way.  I'm excited to live in a time where acceptance and open-mindedness is the norm as opposed to the exception.  This shift has allowed us to not only be more creative as a society, but also more comfortable with ourselves and doing what we want as opposed to what we're told.  I'm not talking post-apocalyptic, conspiracy theory, fight the man type behaviour, but just having the ability to feel a certain way, act a certain way and believe a certain set of things without fear of repercussions.  Now there's still a lot of work to be done in certain areas, but I strongly believe it's the old fashioned and the republican dominated deep south that is holding back those areas.

BIMD: We didn't have queers and men that were women or women that were men!

Yeah, exactly.  I almost want to leave that as is, because it shouldn't even need explanation, but the fact that people still have issues with it means I shouldn't.  It's 2013, whether or not we believe in someone else's lifestyle, we should be able to accept the fact that they aren't required to live the same way we are.  This goes from music, to cars, to morals, to politics, to religion to sexual orientation and beyond.  None of us are identical, so why do we believe we should all have identical beliefs, morals and way of life?

Social acceptance of more open-mindedness and acceptance is ALWAYS a good thing.  If you think otherwise, think of people protesting against black people's rights in the 1950s.  It's the same thing today with so many topics.

This is how the world works today, you certainly aren't going to change it.  Resistance to the advancement of social acceptance and trends will only make you miserable and look like your grumpy grandpa complaining about whippersnappers these days.  Understanding this will allow you to lead a more positive life, and positivity breeds more positivity.

This is the world we live in now, not yesterday.  The people that look forward will end up there, those that live in the past will remain.

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