I’ve been singing “Big Rock Candy Mountain” most of the day because of a brief reference to it in the introduction to Seamus Heany’s verse translation of Beowulf. It’s such a happy song for all of its suggestion of hardship. People keep looking at me funny.
The spork may well be the highest achievement of post-war Western capitalist civilization. I know it’s a stretch, but I’ve become increasingly skeptical of our “advances” since WWII.
I am hopelessly enamored of the past, but not because I think that any previous time period was inherently better. It has more to do with an idea that people were somehow stronger than they are now. For want of real tragedy, we are for the most part unprepared for the eventualities that we must face.
Well, there are none better save for perhaps the Paleolithic hunter/gatherer period. Our roots are as roaming pack mammals, but we have developed our civilization under a model that seems far closer to a cross between hive insects and tree sloths. I often think that a reset to our base origins might be warranted. Think of it as an extreme version of the necessity of revolution as discussed in The Federalist.
Speculation of this sort is ultimately useless, as all the nostalgia in the world will not change the fundamental paradigm under which people are content to live.
Unless, of course, the most catastrophic models of global warming come to pass.
Even still, one of the problems with science fiction that predicts our reversion to a more primitive state is that it fails to recognize that the remembrance of things as they were will serve as a siren’s song to the survivors, who they will work towards recreating the "lost" technology and societal models.
I do not, in fact, have a puppy, in spite of any of my protestations otherwise.