Do you ever stop to marvel at the inventions of the last 100 years. I do, almost daily. Now, I’m sure most of you are thinking about automobiles, medical advancements, the internet and all the technology associated with it, etc. I’d like to dial it down a notch or two and ponder those less obvious things. I realize that some of you will think me quite the simpleton for my choices. I, however, will stand by them as they’ve greatly improved the quality of my life. This is just a sampling.
1. The new hot water dispenser I had installed at my kitchen sink. Being able to get BOILING WATER immediately for my ramen noodles and my tea, has changed my life quite profoundly.
2. On Star. The idea that I can press a button when my car is acting funny and have someone diagnose it right then and there, while I’m driving, is amazing. It must cost a fortune for the people of On-Star to employ so many psychics — I assume that’s how they know what’s going on, right? Very impressive and worth every penny.
3. Crest whitening strips. Back in my day everyone walked around with yellow and gray teeth. It was grotesque, but we didn’t know better. Thank heaven for the advent of superficial whiteners. Actually, thank heaven for the advent of anything that helps me to deceive the public where my appearance is concerned. I believe Spanx falls into this category.
4. Satellite Radio. My daughter has this in her car. I’m jealous. I’ll be ordering it soon. The idea that I can listen to my beloved 60’s and 70’s music without commercial interruption, even if I’m driving through the desert, (which doesn’t happen often, well, almost never. Actually, never…), is simply amazing. In the past, before cell phones, satellite and 4G (whatever that is), driving through a bad reception area, for any length of time, was enough to make you contemplate pulling a ‘Thelma and Louise.’
5. Zumba. I don’t know how I lived without these dance moves for so long.
6. Bottled Water. I don’t even remember what we used to do before bottled water was invented? Weird…?
7. Toll Road Transponders – This may be the only thing that redeems Rod Blagojevich and makes Illinois a cool place to live. (Don’t tell me if your state has this – I don’t want to know. I’d rather believe we’re the only ones.) You’ll never sit in a line of traffic at the toll booth with one of these puppies.
7. Words with Friends – I had no idea how much I enjoyed the game of scrabble until I found Words with Friends. Now, I find I’m using words like, Qi, Aa, and Xi, and Za, all the live long day. (circulating life force, basaltic lava,the fourteenth letter of the Greek alphabet, South Africa – international vehicle registration)
THINGS I MISS/ THINGS I HATE –
1. Normal brakes on a car. Anti-lock brakes are the bane of my existence. You might not understand this particular grievance unless you live in an area that deals with snow and ice. In the past, if you had to brake on a slick surface, you pumped your brakes gently and you would come to a halt. With “Anti-lock brakes” you don’t pump. Basically there are no brakes. When you put your foot on the brake pedal it will feel like metal on metal, the car will not slow down, BUT, you will have control over your steering! I ask, “How is this an improvement when you’re only option is crashing into the car in front of you, or careening into the ditch on your left or right side?” Give me back my old pumping brakes!
2. Full Service Gas Stations. I know they still have them in places like Oregon – that was one of the few reasons I was interested in moving there. (I’d also move there because Maggie of, “Something Fat Happened,” lives there and she is one of the greatest people I’ve met in the blogosphere.) Honestly, it’s so much more civilized. Pulling up to the pump and having a friendly face greet you and wash your windows, while dispensing gasoline, is so much nicer than doing it yourself. Wouldn’t you agree?
3. I hate the Genius bar at Apple. It always reminds me of the bar scene in “Star Wars.” Do these employees think that their cool factor or genius quotient goes up if they dress like a confused dweeb? Last week I had Chewbacca waiting on me, and the week before, it was R2D2. I also hate the word, “App.” I hate that things break and you need a “genius” to tell you there’s nothing you can do except buy a new one. I hate that I’m strung out on Apple products. I hate that my smart phone thinks it’s smarter than I am, and probably is.
4. Hostess. It’s not that I ate Hostess products with any regularity. It was just nice knowing that they were there in my supermarket in case I needed a Ding Dong or Twinkie fix.
5. I miss rotary phones, vinyl records, and old single lens reflex cameras. I like to do things manually. I like rolodexes and keeping records by hand.
6. I hate the security procedures and rules at the airport. I miss the old days when you could just walk right up to your gate with your family. I hate having to read how many ounces something has before I can place it my carry on bag. I hate travel size products. I hate not being able to pack my travel knives and box cutters… Just kidding! Who knew that one day we’d look back at that simple, innocent time with such longing.
7. I miss BlockBuster. You read that right. I miss Blockbuster.
Other than the obvious (internet and related technology) – what recent inventions or new ideas do you most enjoy? What improves the quality of your day-to-day? Any changes you hate, or find incredibly annoying?
New Jersey has full-service gas stations? Interested in moving here? Move somewhere in South Jersey further down than Atlantic City and you’d swear you were somewhere nicer.
Very funny post. I don’t think we miss Blockbuster as much as we like the adventure Blockbuster gave us. Going there on a Friday night was great. We’re headed toward turning into the people in Wall-E where we sit around really fat and notice nothing but our own pleasures. But it’s quicker and more convenient so it’s good, right? Not always…
Thanks, I tried. New Jersey and Oregon! Wow, I had no idea.
Now that Sandy has struck, I guess it’s safe to move to the Jersey Shore? I mean, what’s the likelihood of that happening again?
I used to hate blockbuster until I found that I’d rather rent one then buy a DVD at Target. Obviously I don’t know how to use Netflix or On Demand. I’m so totally inept when it comes to this stuff.
Bottled water remains a mystery…
The super south part of the Jersey Shore was fine during Sandy. You’d like Cape May. The one problem is there’s one way in and one way out so if something bad does happen you’re trapped. So get a place a few miles north. There’s an awesome zoo there and it’s free. If I ever retire and want to live somewhere calm it might be around there. It’s bed and breakfast paradise.
Ooh! I’ll check it out. We used to rent a place in Bay Head but I think that got hit pretty hard.
Ah, Lisa….boy you hit it right on with this list. I can so relate. Perhaps it shows our age but then again we have Crest whitestrips to keep us looking good. Fun post!
haha! I had a funny feeling you’d be in agreement with much of this list. I guess we had Pearl Drops “tooth polish” though it never really worked, did it? LOL!
I love 2,4,6 and 7 of your likes…and I miss 2 and 6. What I don’t like also is that when you phone someone you know they’re looking at who’s calling and tremble in fear that you are one that they don’t feel motivated to talk to….Used to be every call got answered….surprise!!
I feel kind of sad that for whatever reason…cost of stamps, time doing or whatever but Christmas cards and birthday cards don’t get sent very often. Emailing Happy Birthday is nice but doesn’t take as much effort. (I still do and Anniversary tto)…but thank goodness for the dollar stores where you can buy a nice card without going to a store and paying $4 ….Diane
I was going to include sending cards and letters by mail! I miss that, too. There’s no effort in sending an email.
I miss the old phone situation, as well. If the phone was busy, you couldn’t get through and if the person wasn’t home there was no answering machine to pick up. Everyone acts like there’s so much urgency nowadays and I think it makes us all unhappy. Yes, I preferred the element of surprise – both ways, I guess. haha!
I find almost everything incredibly annoying. BUT…I have to admit that on one of my many trips between Las Vegas and Reno (conventions) I listened to satellite radio all the way (rental vehicle) and it was fabulous!!! You can find pretty much any kind of music you want. Wish I could afford it but my old Honda would probably reject the new technology anyways. Oregon? Is there a Luddite commune there?
haha! Yes! Satellite radio is wonderful, right? If you’re driving between Reno and Vegas you could definitely use it. That stretch can feel like you’re driving on the lunar surface.
I get annoyed at so much, too. I really had to edit my list – I could whine forever.
It does feel random that Oregon, of all places, should have full service gas stations. Perhaps there is a Luddite commune there?
I have a whiff of nostalgia for rotary phones and totally agree about airline security. I never, ever thought I would prefer e-books to paper books, but I can’t get myself to read a regular book! I got an iPad for Christmas and it is practically attached to my arm. In fact, I’m at the laptop right now and wondering if my precious (that’s what we call the iPad) misses me. And, I just can’t agree about the Geniuses. I freaking love the geniuses; I wish one lived in my house, then I wouldn’t need to learn how to create ids and transfer files and all the other things my daughter and husband need me to do to live with their technology. Thank god, my son is pretty proficient and we can share the load. And, I don’t think anything redeems Blago.
Something even more ridiculous than the ABS system, is the stupid little light that comes on when the car loses traction. Really? People need that? ‘Cause I”m thinking that if you need that light, you probably shouldn’t be driving at all.
haha! The ABS light is ridiculous!! My car tells me that the road is slippery! Really? Because I couldn’t tell from looking at the six inches of snow.
Hey, I don’t mind the contents of the “genius” mind, I just hate all the attitude and trappings that encase it. LOL!
My iPad is a part of my body, too. I carry it everywhere. When my husband bought it for me, I poo-pooed the idea, “I’ll never use that thing!” I proclaimed with such confidence. Now I practically sleep with it.
I will never go the way of the e-book. I need pages to dog ear and write on. I’m very tactile.
I was kidding about Blago – he’s a total embarrassment to our state. But then again, Illinois has the most corrupt politics in the country. That is the truth.
Thanks for the thoughtful and funny comment!
This was a really good post! I tweeted it to Freshly Pressed lol. Since we’re twins, I pretty much agree about most things on this list.
Do you remember when Spencer’s friend thought the hot water dispenser was soap and burned his hands? HAhahaha
hahah! Yes! That’s still funny. 😀
Thanks for trying Lil, but I hardly think I’ll be F pressed. 😦
You nevs know!
Taking a break from applying for jobs online and finding your question to be a great way to vent about the online application process these days. Now organizations make you fill forms out that ask you to retype the information already found on the resume that you’ve submitted. You take 52 hours to fill out a third of the form to find that some of the information on your form is not correct — but the ‘system’ doesn’t tell you exactly what that is, preventing you from moving to the next page in the application. Sometimes after I’ve filled out almost all of the required information, the system will shut down for reasons unknown to me — arrrrghhhhh!! So, yes, I hate and find incredibly annoying the online job application processes.
I also wondered what we did before bottled water. And now I wonder if my job interviews would be more successful if I use whitening strips 😀
hahaha! (Remember Pearl Drops Tooth Polish?)
The online application is so flawed and frustrating. I’ve filled out applications, answered dozens of essay type questions, submitted it, and never heard back from some of these places. How do I know they even received it?
Ugh! What a pain in the neck. I hate it when there is something “incorrect” and you have no clue what they’re talking about? It’s such a time waster and energy drainer. I like the old fashioned resume. It was so much easier.
Well, needless to say, I wish you luck in your job search, Sandee. I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you. xox
Yes! The Pearl Drops Tooth Polish lady I remember — she would run her tongue over her teeth and say mmmmm…
A minute ago I got word back from my old job I’d been on hiatus from since December saying to report back on 4/3, so that’s reassuring, but I’m still looking… Thanks Lisa!
I think God heard my prayer for you and answered immediately! haha! That’s awesome. At least it’s a safety net and will take some of the stress off.
The Pearl Drops Lady! Exactly!! Why is that stupid piece of trivia etched in our minds? haha!
Oh and thanks for the David Bowie tune — I’ll listen to it while sending an email resume to Castle on Hudson. Love me some David Bowie!
Love this post — took the time to listen to a little David — takes me back
What improves the quality of my day – reading your blog
Big smile on my face 🙂
Thanks, Lou Ann!
Love the hot water dispenser, miss that people who used to call me on the phone were friends and family – now it’s almost exclusively telemarketers. Although, one kind soul working the phones told me this – one certain way to get your number off the universal lists (which the telemarketer pays a fee for) is to tell the telemarketer when they ask for you by name that they have the wrong number. If the number is reported as inaccurate it’s removed from the lists. Oh, and how could we not LOVE David Bowie 😉
I have the same telemarketer problem. I don’t recognize any of the numbers, so I don’t pick up. If they don’t leave a message, I assume it wasn’t that important. I think I’ll give your method a try. Lately it’s been out of hand.
The hot water dispenser is my favorite thing in the whole house. We did a major renovation, and when all was said and done, it was that little piece of equipment that brought me the most joy. 🙂
David Bowie is brilliant. Love!
You are on a roll today, sister. This was funny and made me long for some of the things you’ve written about. How is it I can sit in a coffee shop and send you messages — where does it go? It’s like magic.
I don’t have that On Star thingy and used to be scared about it but it doesn’t matter. Big Bro can track us through any and all kinds of means now and listen — just like On Star. Like a moron, we got rid of all our albums when we were going through a de-cluttering phase and every time I think about it, it physically hurts because I had such great albums.
And the Genius Bar at Apple — you have described that perfectly and I so agree. Remember the Saturday Night Live skits when the computer geeks would make fun of everyone who didn’t know what they knew? That’s what those Apple people are like. Grrr. And Blockbuster — yes, I so miss going into a store, picking up the box and reading about the movie. There aren’t any anywhere now.
GREAT post. Made me laugh, smile and get all nostalgic. Oh and how the hell is it that Benjamin Franklin fathered so many children? He was known to be quite the ladies’ man, you know. What that was all about isn’t in any history books. Anywhere. Hmmm.
I’ve come very close to getting rid of my albums but luckily I’ve held on. haha! We’ll see if they make a full comeback.
The genius bar makes my blood boil. I hate that you have to make appointments and that they won’t just answer a simple question without a big ta-doo. I want to grab them by their pierced nose ring and say, “Look here, you little dweeb – I need HELP!!” LOL!! I feel so stupid and powerless in the apple store – like they’re all laughing at me. 🙂
Blockbuster was so simple… I can’t even figure out how to turn on one of my TVs, much less play a movie!
I didn’t know that about Ben Franklin!! Maybe inventors back then were like rock stars today? How did he attract the ladies??
You mean there was a time when they didn’t have any bottled water? Or bottled air?
Seriously, if you had full service service stations as we do you would be disinchanted. You can do the whole thing FAR faster than these employees, and be as generous as you like to yourself with the tip.
I was thinking about our current water consumption and then I was trying to remember if, back in the day, we consumed the same amount? I don’t think we were drinking the same amount? People carry it around in their cars and purses and back packs, now. I don’t ever remember carrying water around in a thermos with me when I was younger. I do remember drinking tap water, and even water from the hose. It always had that slightly metallic taste. haha!
I guess I didn’t think about slow and inefficient gas pumpers! That would bother me greatly. You make a good point.
Personally, the Internet/computers/Google rock my world!! It’s amazing to me that just 20 years ago, computers were still really rare. And Google, well, it rocks my world! My go to pal, almost every single day!! Today, I nominated you for a Liebster Lisa, thought I know you have been there, done that. JUst because I love you. 🙂
Ahem… “Other than the internet and related technology…” what inventions or new ideas do you enjoy? Alright, I’ll cut you some slack since you just nominated me for a Leibster award!!! Thanks Dawn!!! I accept the love and return it with a big hug!! xoxo
I can’t get beyond the internet. I know you set down a line in the sand, but I just love my Google so much, it overshadows all else. Ok: let me think: Is DVR on TV too techy? Spanx. Ugg slippers. Skype (yeah, more tech). Small, rechargeable vacuums. Ruby red vodka. But, in the end… GOOGLE!!! How’s that gf?
I’m giving you a pass. I’ll take Spanx and Uggs as my final answer. (And yes, Google is like the Magic Eight Ball – it’s beyond anything we could have imagined while we were learning about the dewy decimal system and looking through the card catalog!)
Wait, what?? A pass… did I not just give you some legit ones? I mean come on, On Star isn’t all that different than some of mine! Ok… how about seat warmers in my car (LOVE them), frozen coffee drinks (my weakness, decaff), drive through coffee places, speaker phone (for sitting on hold, hello!), stain stick. I don’t need no stinkin’ pass yo. I think I’ve given more than some of these comments!
Okay, now you have a surplus!!! Seat warmers, stain stick and speaker phone have put you in front of the pack. I knew you’d come through! 😀
Ahhhh. It’s all about winning. 😉
Toll Booth gizmos are saving my marriage– it is weird how one stupid thing like waiting to pay can really irritate an otherwise very patient man.
I miss Hershey Chocolate bars being wrapped in foil… that was always the best part– neatly unwrapping the bar and sharing your squares :0)
I think this is one of my favorite post of yours.. I am with Lily. You should be FP’d freaking at least once!
PS– even we have a full service pump in this rural town.
haha! So obviously, Illinois is the worst state to live in! I can’t even enjoy our toll booth passes – now that I know other states have them. And you have full service pumps? Well, well, well…. We really are a sucky state.
The hershey’s foil -YES!! I totally would never have thought of that. Such a simple pleasure taken away from us. Damn it! lol!
I will never get F pressed because I’m too goofy. But thanks for the encouragement, Audra you are soo kind. Also, I received another coolio postcard in the mail today!! Seriously, getting a postcard from you is the highlight of my day. You might as well have been standing in my kitchen with me! Now I just need to get your post card so I can share the feeling…
Yep, I’m old enough to remember all those things, and miss them too.
Except Blockbuster. They had 6 good months when they opened, and it was all down hill from there.
Lately for no good reason, I miss real phone booths. With doors and a working light.
Yes! Phone booths! I miss them, too. The door and the working light are a must. The still have some in London, but very few. They were also handy as shelter when it started to rain.
Blockbuster was easy. 6 months…! Haha! My husband used to work at one so I know they had more than 6 good months. Maybe 9?
So much has changed in the past 35 years one can’t even keep track of it all.. Just think in a few more years things like CD players will be in the Smithsonian museum as an antique..
I’m with El Guapo, I miss those conversations in that glass box, and I was so short I could never sit on the floor and talk..
My kids laughed at me for a long time because I used to carry my CD player on my walks – it was the size of my hand and a little cumbersome but that was a big leap for me – it took a long time for me to move away from cassette tapes and my Sony Walkman. Now I have an iPod and I look back at the CD player – it’s so Little House on The Prairie! haha!
Phone booths are so cool, let’s face it. Talking to the operator, getting all your change together. I used to call home once a week from college in a phone booth. haha! Now with cell phones I can call Europe and Asia and the connection is crystal clear. CRAZY!
As already noted, New Jersey does indeed have full service gas stations, although for 99% of them “full service” basically means they pump your gas. On the rare occasion an attendant actually cleans the windshield I am about as giddy as a kid in a candy shop. Of course, I cannot recall the last time anyone asked if they could check my oil…
SiriusXM is pretty awesome. And I’m not a fan of me using the word awesome, so that is how awesome it is. When you do take the plunge always insist on getting a “promotional” price. No one I know who uses the service actually pays full price. Sirius is always willing to hook you for less. Of course you have to remember to call them every 3 or 6 months when your promotional period draws to a close to re-up for new promotional rate, but it is well worth a five minute phone call!
Duly noted. I’ll cry and act unstable if I have to. I’ll tell them John from New Jersey sent me. *wink*
Seriously, SiriusXM radio may be the greatest invention for me, since I love my music and I love to drive – it’s like radio crack. I’m hooked.
I’m much impressed that we went from hazel twig to toothbrush –
I actually hate rotary phones – they are in my reoccurring nightmare where I desperately need to dial 911 on a rotary phone, and I can’t the dial all the way around.. the more scared I am, the worse I bungle it up.
I like the little sound they make and I feel that I’m actually participating in connecting the call. I know that nightmare, though. If you only had to dial 1, then no problem, but when you put that 9 in there, it’s like yipes, that second or two could be the difference between life and death. LOL!
And you knew I’d read anything with a David Bowie reference, right?
Of Course! I know how to get you over here. 😉
Interesting to see how similar things are with the Uk (apart frm the fact that we still have dirty teeth!) Blockbusters really is a loss!
Haha! Dirty teeth! I know the UK has been looking forward and waiting patiently for dentistry to come to it’s shores! Lol!
We wait with baited breath – quite literally in many cases.
The dandy really must live in a different world.
Most of the things you love I don’t have – some I’ve never even heard of and nearly all the things you miss I never had – especially ‘Hostess’ – I have a butler, does that count?
The Perfumed Dandy
haha! Not to worry… you have access to the world’s most delicious perfumes. I’d trade my Hostess Twinkies for those hard to find fragrances any day of the week.
This is all fine and good and I’m glad that you love me and Oregon’s gas stations but EXCUSE ME!!! Why are we not playing Friends with Words????
Haha! Okay, lady, you’re on. Bring it. 😉
Steam Engine trains I miss, I say miss; I’m pretty young to miss things but I’ve travelled on steam engine trains before at like train shows (not that I go to that many) and they’re pretty cool, the sounds and what the like. The first public steam engine train was invented by a guy named George Stephenson from (you guessed it) Chesterfield 🙂
I often think about what life must have been like 100 years ago, the the last hundred years has given us so very much; it’s like suddenly we just managed to crack through that technological barrier and were able to continually improve year after year. Then I think what it’s gonna be like in another 100 years, 200 hundred years… Obvs we’ll all be dead by then.
I remember as a kid wishing for 3D television and now look what we have, someone discovered how to make it a possibility and now it comes as standard on new televisions. Just wait until virtual reality is released! 😀
I do also think though that technology could be our downfall, obesity has obviously risen over the last couple decades, people don’t need to leave the house to speak to their friends anymore, video games are getting better every year, we rely so much on technology now; I was thinking at work how the post was even delivered before all this tech, I get so many idiots calling me how to do this and that as its “vital” to their job (had a man that was actually sobbing down the phone, told him to get a grip); it wasn’t vital for their great grandfather!
I love the old trains – the sound puts you to sleep like a baby. They’re so romantic, really.
I feel like you do – like we’re progressing with technology in leaps and bounds. It feels like warp speed. From 1900 to 2000 was slow and steady but now it’s almost too much to keep up with. And you’re right about everyone’s physical health – this technology might prove deadly if they don’t create new ways for people to get out and move their bodies.
I remember going to Disney World’s Epcot and going through that Planet Earth ride. Back then they predicted that in the future people would be able to see each other on a screen while talking long distance. I was always like, “Haha! That’s so stupid!! That would never happen!” Look how wrong I was. I was the stupid one!!
I can understand that guy crying. Sometimes it gets so overwhelming and you feel so powerless in your own life. Obvs he was desperate. He’s lucky he ran into you, Pete.
I loved this entire blog. I am mostly impressed with what you said about Ben Franklin. He certainly could have used some TLC in the look department. The crazy things is, I’m hearing he was quite the ladies man. What?!?
Haha!! I heard that from one of my readers and find it hard to believe. Just look at him, for Pete sake!
And…XM Radio is the absolute best.
Love this list, Lisa! I do miss calling people on the phone. It seems like all of my friends//family rely on texting to a fault. I adore XM radio and Zumba! 🙂
I agree about the phone calls. I’m the worst with texting, I don’t even think to carry my cell phone with me, if that gives you any idea. Now when we hear someone’s voice it’s lost startling. LOL! Zumba is such an easy and fun calorie buner – never mind that I probably look like a total freak. And XM radio… So amazing!
OK, I think my love list would be way different and my miss list way longer! I miss the full service stations, too. My grandfather owned one, and it was a pleasant way of life for him, too.
Me, too. My miss list is so much longer but I had to be brief so I just named a few. Phone booths and full service gas stations are a reminder of a more innocent time. That’s a good memory to have of your grandfather. 🙂