Wednesday, July 28, 2010

These are the Good Old Days

The past is a nice place to visit from time to time -- but it's a terrible place to live.

Sometimes, we see a television show or visit a museum exhibit showing life a couple hundred years ago. Perhaps, you've thought, "Those were the good old days! I wish we could go back and live like that."

I don't think you really do.

A couple hundred years ago the life expectancy was 38 years, the average work week was 72 hours, and the median annual income was $300.

Cholera, typhoid and yellow fever were common. For instance, one out of five people in Philadelphia in 1793 died from these diseases.

Many women died in childbirth, and the flu also claimed the lives of many. Almost every home experienced the sorrow of losing a child.

No indoor plumbing, no refrigerators, no microwaves, no soft mattresses, no electric heat, no lights, no cars, no tv, no computers, no recorded music, no tupperware, no plastic, no power tools, no soft drinks, no cheeseburgers.

Everybody milked their own cows!

Nah -- you wouldn't want to go back there and live.

Thank God we’re living in 2010 instead 1810!

Yet, there is something special about yesteryear. Perhaps we can bring the treasures of the past into the present.

Rich family values are passed along from one generation to another. Some of the greatest music was written two or three hundred years ago. The Bible, of course, composed in ancient times, brings fresh inspiration and insight today.

St. Augustine said, "You can only understand backwards, but you must live forwards."

1 comment:

Sue Schweickert said...

Mark, Even 100 years ago things were very different. My grandparents lived up here in the northwoods without electicity, running water and automobiles. Their mode of travel was horse and buggy and the steam engine. Life was much harder. We are truly spoiled.