Traveling Anew

Multiple exposure, “Path Through the Fog”, by Alan Sislen (Washington Post 8/28/21)

Saturday, August 28, 2021 —(On September 20, the full moon, “Harvest”, will rise nearest to earth.)

I’m sipping from a cup containing 2X-caffeine, by Starbucks. It helps me wade through news of America’s winding-down hours in Afghanistan. Bloody awful stuff, referring not to caffeine, but to what’s occurring or could happen in the Middle East.

I remember as a little kid in the fifth or sixth grade, hearing my “geography” teacher talking about the Middle or Far East. I wondered, what’s the difference? Finding an answer didn’t seem important for many years. The question renewed on September 11, 2001.

Kids today and in the future will examine history differently.

For example, there’s a deadline for America’s withdrawal from Afghanistan, set exactly twenty years after the Twin Towers Bombings. This suggests a “connected flow” of distinct activities.

Instead of having to learn separate incidences, kids will learn a parenthesis of activities bound by dates. An entire flow will be captured as the years between 2001 and 2021, as an awfulness of horrors, summarizing the attack and civilian death, the war and combat-failure, and an entire world of comprehension with overwhelming sadness.

I remember learning about WWII in a series of separate large incidents. There was a bombing of Pearl Harbor. There were radio reports of battle engagements and incidents. There were speeches broadcast from America’s President. There’s a date on which war officially ended. There’s an afterwards, too, when America dropped atomic bombs on Japanese cities.

Past learning of history meant organizing and memorizing unique incidents. In the future, a parentheses will capture activities and be bookmarked by the dates of beginning and ending (if “endings” still seem possible).

Dear Friends: Mornings might be improved by avoiding a double caffeine with the news. Diana

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