This being an Internet “blawg”, I would be remiss if I didn’t make one of those “end of the decade” best of / worst of lists.
I know it’s in vogue to bash the last ten years as “Worst Decade Ever” but I can’t help but feel this is just another sign of our self centered media culture. If you listened to the Baby Boomers the world only began in 1950, and the sixties were the pinnacle of civilization man… I mean like, Woodstock and shit…
Yeah, as this terrific photo tour of the past 10 years shows, it sure wasn’t the best of times, but I wouldn’t call it the decade from hell either. Like most of our media induced navel gazing, our opinions are formed from the 24/7 saturation of News! News! News! Since we see few images of life pre-1950’s, it’s easy to assume that it was idyllic. But as I’ve said before, I’d take the past decade over the 1930’s or 1940’s any day. Heck, I’d take them over any decade in the 20th century, pre-Baby Boomer. And that doesn’t even begin to address all the pre-modern history that we have no images of to remind us how wonderful life was. I’m sure the Black Death was a lovely time to be alive. If only CNN and Fox news had been around to comment on it, we’d be able to figure out if it was Bush’s or Obama’s fault.
No, as much as we hate to admit it, as bad as the past 10 years were, they were also pretty good. Of course, statements like that don’t sell Newspapers and Magazines. Luckily, it ain’t my job to sell either. The one thing most lacking these days seems to be some sense of perspective.
The changes that have occurred in the world during the last 100 years are staggering. But we seem to forget that, and assume that things will continue to advance at such speed towards a technological utopia delivered directly to our iPOD’s. When they show any sign of slowing, or God forbid, a decline, we throw up our hands like spoiled little children and cry for Mommy. Well folks, I’ve got a news flash you won’t find in Time, CNN, or the NY Times. Life ain’t fair and it never has been. The world is imperfect, and man is imperfect, and I don’t see either one of them changing in the next decade either. Does that mean we should despair? Hell no. It means we all need to cowboy up damn it, and quit whining.
So the world economy tanks, and folks are standing in bread lines. Heck, we still have folks that were around the last time that happened.
So the polar ice caps melt? It won’t be the first time.
So peak oil brings about the end of the automotive age? I think we have a few thousand years of history to show we don’t need cars to survive
So a global pandemic decreases the world population by 30%. Yawn, been there done that too.
So we take that big asteroid hit and… OK, ya got me there. That would definitely suck.
So, barring an Asteroid strike, here’s to the 2010’s and another wild, unpredictable ride through human history. Please fasten your seatbelts and keep your hands and feet in the vehicle at all times.