The Distant Past Was Once the Distant Future

Perhaps the title reads like I mean to dwell on living in the time you’re alive. I do and don’t. The latest online fad is assuming that we who live in the twenty-first century know how people who existed any time before us lived and thought. We know how they felt about everything even though most of us don’t know the same about ourselves.

We don’t and cannot know without entering a time machine and going back in time, staying there long enough to become a member of whatever society or culture we end up in.

Slang was different, language usage was different, education, if there was any, was different. There was little or no health care. A trip to the dentist might mean seeing a local barber to get a tooth pulled. Not many were drilled and filled and if they were it was done with a pedal operated machine. Books were a luxury, supermarkets didn’t exist, no indoor plumbing or electricity. Toilets were called outhouses and toilet paper, tissue paper did not exist.

The average American lives today as the wealthy lived fifty or more years ago. However, no one then wasted anything. Inheriting meant having items you wouldn’t or couldn’t obtain otherwise. Everything was repaired. Torn clothing was repaired, darned, patched. Shoes were re-soled. Automobile and truck tires were “recapped”.

No one even twenty years ago would’ve considered living with a digital device dependency. People valued thinking for themselves. Making decisions based on a variety of facts and information they sought and learned.

But the high life of today is taking a winter song written during WWII and assuming the lyrics have a hidden reference to rape in them. They do not!

“Baby It’s Cold Outside” isn’t about rape.

In the 1930s, 40s, saying that line, “Say, what’s in this drink?” was a standard way to try and blame something else for whatever dumb thing you said or did. It meant “O boy, is my face red,” if you were using it to apologize for a gaffe. Whoever you say it to knows that, in fact, the drink isn’t strong, and that you’re admitting it was your own gaffe. In the dating situation of the song, it means “It’s improper for me to stay, but I want to stay, so I wish I could blame the drink.”

Assuming you can imagine what an adult’s life was like during the war is ludicrous at best and insulting at worst. Hell the majority of men were overseas fighting to create a world were you can condemn a song written at that time to entertain the women who stayed behind wondering if they’d ever see the man they loved again. Assuming you think that rape culture was rampant then, well honestly give it a rest. You’re beginning to sound paranoid.

Today we seem hell bent on altering or eradicating history in all its forms. If that continues then the future will become a world of Pete and Repeat.

Good luck and good night.

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