Inhistory books, hundreds of years from now – someone looking back at 2017, at all things before now – what will they see, what will they be reading?
It likely won’t be a dusty book in a library. In a bookless future (someone will find new uses for those buildings we used to call libraries), historians won’t be people and librarians will be non-existent – there will be an ‘app for that’.
And surely there will be a quote on that history app – from Shakespeare: “To be, or not to be …”
That quote will be stroked out, replaced with: “whatever you want it to be”
The ‘real history app’, electronic merger of all things that ever happened complete with video. We will walk through time wearing virtual reality headsets or some iGlasses that let us step out of our today into yesterday, into the past of others. What will we see? Statues being pulled down – we have memories of the Berlin Wall, Lennon, Saddam … now Lee. While I’ll not quarrel with anyone demolishing relics or symbols of horrific people and horrific times – it seems a bit like taking an eraser to history books, wiping out what happened as if it never happened. I wonder if that is good. The outcry in recent years – as ISIS and Taliban forces wiped out, blew up and pushed over monuments/antiquities of times past. They did it in the name of religion, or non-religion, they did it in anger and in war. But when desecrations of revered and reviled parties emblems – you have to wonder who future generations will learn from or how they will study history. And when they do, will the get ‘real historyas it happened’ or ‘history after the editors made changes’?
Revisiting history, reliving it, or simply distort it in ways we neither agree or disagree with – collectively throwing up our hands to say, “it’s a mess, let’s start over”. Can we?
We can’t start over in relationships of any kind – can’t hit rewind and splice in some film of imaginary things to alter truth, facts or feelings, only our view of them.What view would you like?
Is the current day-to-day news cycle a view of the future, or revisionist history lesson?
I tuned out TV for a few days, focused my attention elsewhere – not to exclusion of what is going on but mostly‘ignoring what everybody is saying about the news’ for a while because sometimes we get so much blur of the speed of events, the speed of coverage of events, the speed of people talking about those events and their coverage and the speed of every voice atop every soapbox talking about those events and what everyone is saying about those events can lead to run on sentences …
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could re-wind and ‘choose another channel’ – and if we could, should we go back a week, nine months or fifty years? Or five hundred …
What would you change?
It seems to me, if we can get our head around the notion of re-working and re-interpreting the past, why do have such trouble interpreting and working with the present?
I also publish FACILITYCalgary, a weekly newsletter, free every Tuesday: to sign up, CLICK HERE
If you liked any Musing column, it would mean a lot to me if you would respond. Comments are welcome, so please contribute to the discussion. To reply, use: firstname.lastname@example.org . You can also connect with me on LinkedIn . You can sign up your friends here at MarkMusing.com . This site is updated daily, each column is retained in the archive when the next day's column is loaded ...