Tweet

June 2019
AutomatedBuildings.com

Babel Buster Network Gateways: Big Features. Small Price.
Control Solutions, Inc. - Minnesota

(Click Message to Learn More)


Back Then

There are valuable lessons to learn from going back.
Marc Petock
Marc Petock
Chief Marketing & Communications Officer,
Lynxspring Inc.

Contributing Editor

Articles
Interviews
Releases
New Products
Reviews
Securing Buildings News
Editorial
Events
Sponsors
Site Search
Newsletters
Cylon
Archives
Past Issues
Home
Editors
eDucation
Belimo
Training
Links
Software
Subscribe
Distech Controls

There are times it’s interesting to look back to go forward. I was recently reminded of this when my wife shared the following story she came across:

Checking out at the store, the young cashier suggested to the much older lady that she should bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags are not good for the environment. The woman apologized to the young girl and explained, "We didn't have this 'green thing' back in my earlier days."

The young clerk responded, "That's our problem today. Your generation did not care enough to save our environment for future generations."

The older lady said that she was right -- our generation didn't have the "green thing" in its day. The older lady went on to explain:

Back then, we returned milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So, they really were recycled.
 
But we didn't have the "green thing" back in our day.

Grocery stores bagged our groceries in brown paper bags that we reused for numerous things. Most memorable besides household garbage bags was the use of brown paper bags as book covers for our schoolbooks. This was to ensure that public property (the books provided for our use by the school) was not defaced by our scribblings. Then we were able to personalize our books on the brown paper bags. But too bad we didn't do the "green thing" back then.

We walked up the stairs because we didn't have an escalator in every store and office building. We walked to the grocery store and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to go two blocks. But she was right.

We didn't have the "green thing" in our day.

Back then, we washed the baby's diapers because we didn't have the throw-away kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy-gobbling machine burning up 220 volts. Wind and solar power really did dry our clothes back in our early days. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing.

But that young lady is right; we didn't have the "green thing" back in our day.

Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house -- not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size of the state of Montana. In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn't have electric machines to do everything for us.

When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used to wad up old newspapers to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap. Back then, we didn't fire up an engine and burned gasoline just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power. We exercised by working, so we didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.

But she's right; we didn't have the "green thing" back then.

We drank from a fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time; we had a drink of water.

Reliable Controls We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blade in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.

But we didn't have the "green thing" back then.

Back then, people took the streetcar, or a bus and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their moms into a 24-hour taxi service in the family's $45,000 SUV or van, which cost what a whole house did before the "green thing."

We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And we didn't need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 23,000 miles out in space to find the nearest burger joint.

But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn't have the "green thing" back then?

We don't like being old in the first place, so it doesn't take much to piss us off... Especially from a tattooed, multiple pierced smartass who can't make change without the cash register telling them how much.

There are valuable lessons to learn from going back.  One I believe to be true for our industry, is there is another disrupter that is equal in strength to technology—it’s changing needs and behavior. For us, disruption is coming not only from technology but also from changing needs and behaviors.

footer

Haystack Connect 2019
[Click Banner To Learn More]

[Home Page]  [The Automator]  [About]  [Subscribe ]  [Contact Us]

Events

Want Ads

Our Sponsors

Resources