“When it comes to life the critical thing is whether you take things for granted or take them with gratitude.” ~ G. K. Chesterton
On occasion, a group of my friends reminisce and tell epic tales of term papers–stories about fare maidens, slaying dragons, and escaping the wrath of evil sorcerers. Okay, we didn’t have to walk to school barefoot in ten feet of snow, but we had to physically go to the library, look up the location of abstracts and books in the card catalog, travel the labyrinth of the Dewey decimal code, and even bring a roll of dimes for copies or from the microfiche machine in the pre-Google days. There was no cut-and-paste; there was onion skin paper after paper yanked out of our typewriters, crumpled beyond recognition, and strewn about our bedrooms, a minefield of typos.
Twenty years later, in order to solve any argument, I simply pull out my smartphone and google the answer. In a few seconds we know who sang that song, what caused WWI, or when the movie is playing. I come to work and I just expect my computer to turn on, load programs, work as fast as I am able to type with two browsers, three programs open, and if there is any delay, I’m frustrated to no end.
Anything we “get used to” is an easy candidate for apathy. Maybe the first day I got my 20″ iMac that is hell-a-fast I was excited; maybe that lasted for two months. Two years later, I just expect it to work. I take it for granted. And, perhaps, some of the stories of the days of old are good reminders of how fortunate we are that in just a few minutes, I can type up this blog post, publish it to the cloud, tweet it, share it on Facebook, accept comments, all without any onion-skinned paper enduring my wrath.
This week’s topic — What do you take for granted?