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Friday, October 26, 2012

The Time Capsule

The Time Capsule By Michelle Hoffmann 

     This time capsule has been placed here for future generations to find so that they will know what life was like in the year 2012.  It is filled with examples of some of the best items our generation had and to show how we lived.  Perhaps you can use this as a building block for change, or it can be used as an educational piece to teach your young people about us.  We hope that you find the items contained within both informational and entertaining.
            Our daily routines are simple.  We get up, go to work, come home, and go to bed.  This sometimes becomes mundane, and yet we are able to find happiness in the smallest things.  It is these small things that make it all worth it.  Sure, there are also days where, due to unforeseen circumstances, the usual becomes the unusual.  But, life is what we make it.    We endure the ups with the downs.
            We may be the last generation to enjoy having parties, getting together with friends and family and interacting with each other.   It is these interactions where we make our connections and our lives are better for it.
            The popular culture of our time however, seems to be headed more towards being anti-social.  Many of our young people are rebellious, huddling over the latest electronic devices, ignoring the rest of society and all that has made our culture great in the past.   More and more often, social morality has taken a back seat to personal wants, the younger generations seem to have no regard for authority; they do what they want, when they want and never mind the consequences.
            An example of morality and decision making in our society today can be seen in our politics.  The men and women of our time, who have been given the responsibility of running this great nation are more often using this office for their own gain.  They get on their podiums, spouting what they think we want to hear so that we will vote for them and put them in the position where they can do what they want.

            This being an election year makes it even worse.  The candidates that are running for the Presidency of The United States have made it their mission to convince us that they are the one who has the right answer to the economic problems of today.  Like hucksters selling two brands of bailing buckets on the deck of the Titanic, each is there for their own benefit rather than ours.
            The things in life that cause me the most happiness are not material things.  Being happy, to me, means having everything I need to survive, being surrounded with the love of my family and friends, and having the peace of mind that comes from knowing that nothing that I do - or have done - will cause harm to anyone.    I learned this the hard way.  There was a time in my life when I had money and was able to do what I want, when I wanted. 
            I think back to that time today and ask myself, was I really happy?  The answer to that question is no, I wasn't.  I was lonely, trying to please everyone but myself.  Many times, I would do something that went against my personal ethics, just to make people like me.  This was not happiness.
            My main hope for the future is that we as individuals take responsibility and come to the realization that the way things are being done today is not working.  We need to figure out another way of doing things that will reduce the damage that we are doing to ourselves and our planet.   Each of us needs to step up to the plate and make a real change.   
            Some examples of significant items from our time are:

            Literary Work: I chose the novel - 50 Shades of Grey by E. L. James. In this story, a young literature student falls in love with a man whom she has gone to interview.  Of course, he ends up wanting her as much as she wants him and the two of them end up embarking on a dark and passionate journey where they explore each other's dark desires.   This trilogy of books is a perfect example of how a story, which was started as an online reading, met with such success that it became one of the first physical, best selling, most sought after adult novels of our time.   (James, 2011)
            The value of preserving this item stems from the necessity to show future generations an example of one of the different ways that technology was used to entertain us. 

            Art:   Sidewalk Art by Julian Beever.  He has become known as Pavement Picasso, due to the brilliance of his designs.  He creates his works in 3D, using chalk, on pavement surfaces.  This style creates the illusion of something having three dimensions but in actuality is entirely flat.  I chose to include this is my time capsule because of how amazing this artist and his drawings are.   (Beever, 2012)
            I think it is important to show the future generations that our society had its beautiful side to it as well as the harsh side.  The creativity shown in this artist’s work is one of the finest examples of how individuals from all walks of life can bring a sense of wonder and joy to others.  

            Song:   The song that I chose to include here was 'Set Fire to The Rain' by Adele.  Born Adele Laurie Blue Adkins in 1988, she got her start on MySpace, after a friend posted one of her demos.  From there, she went on to appear on Saturday Night Live.  Since then, she has garnered numerous Grammy Awards, mentions in the Guinness Book of World Records and other major awards.  (Adele, 2012)
            The lyrics of this song express the human need to belong and the ability of emotional power to overwhelm rational thought. 
            This song goes to show how a small town girl, who is not very well known, can use the Internet to become one of the world’s most loved icons.




            Film:  The Hunger Games.  The movie 'The Hunger Games' was a social phenomenon that grew out of an immensely successful book.  In this futuristic movie, one boy and one girl are selected from each of 12 districts to fight to the death on live TV.  One girl, Katniss Everdeen, volunteers to take the place of her younger sister.  She and her male partner are then pitted against much bigger and stronger opponents. (Collins, 2012)
            The reason that I included it here is simple.  The topic of the movie and its popularity prove to us just how primitive we still are.  We, as a society, still have our ancestral tendencies toward violence and the need to experience the “thrill of the hunt”.   It does not matter how advanced our society becomes; there will always be some primal part of us that will need to be satiated.  This movie speaks to that part of us.

            Item from Popular Culture:  There are so many different popular items, that I had trouble choosing just one.  However, I settled on something not quite as obvious as a cell phone.  It was a game called Mind Flex.  In this game that was a huge hit in pop culture, a sensor picked up brain activity and used it to activate a fan which was used to manipulate a floating ball through a series of obstacles. (Mind-Flex, 2009)
             I included Mind-Flex since it is using cutting edge technology to demonstrate some of the uses of the mind to control physical objects without the need for implants.  Using the mind to directly control objects is a science which, at the present time, is still in its infancy.
            I hope that this time capsule will serve to entertain and educate the future generations.  May you all learn from the mistakes that we have made in the past and gain better understanding of your society today by perusing these popular artifacts from our time.

May the Gods bless you all!
 Michelle

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