My brother and I used to spend many a late night during our childhoods trying to figure out what our futures might hold for us when we reached adulthood. After the lights went out and the family was bedded down, Mark and I whispered about the fantastic stuff and developments of our fantasies. Sometimes the excitement about the future caused our voices to rise above the level of whispers. Then dad would yell at us to shut up and go to sleep. We’d simply go back to whispering until one of us would just nod off to unconsciousness.
To a couple of boys of the 1960s, the future was far away, yet attainable. We always thought of the future as being the year 2,000. After all we’d be in our 40s, middle aged dudes who would be able to afford the latest space age technology. Yes, we both could hardly wait to own our very own, personal flying cars. We just knew they’d have them for sale by at least 1999. We wondered how the wings would be stowed or maybe wings would be unnecessary because of some sort of advanced magnetic repulsion force field that would levitate the car and power it forward. Who knew?
We took for granted that we would own ultra sleek, technologically advanced homes. It was a given that solar power was to be the worldwide standard so electrical consumption would not be a worry. We could live in a domed cityscape with not a concern for weather. Because it would always be a pleasant, temperature controlled place to live. If we chose to live in the country, we’d enjoy such conveniences as electrically heated sidewalks and driveways to eliminate the need for clearing them after snowstorms. With unlimited solar electricity, there’d be no problem. Besides that, if the driveway didn’t clear fast enough, we’d always have our flying cars to whisk us away to our destinations.
I had a plastic toy robot, so robotics entered into our fantasies, too. I figured that if I decided to have a home with a lawn, that I’d simply have some sort of robotic lawn mower to keep it all nice and tidy. The same would hold true for the interior of the house. A super powerful robotic vacuum sweeper would be the main feature of the maintenance equipment. If walls needed painting or decorated, a robot would do that for us. The same for basic upkeep of electrical appliances, plumbing and so forth.
We weren’t simply materialistic kids. Our discussions often touched upon how wonderful the world would be. No more wars. People would finally understand the need to coexist with equanimity. (We didn’t know that word yet, though.) No more starving children in other parts of the world. There would be complete racial and social harmony among the world’s population. In fact there’d be complete equality for anyone of any gender, race, orientation, nationality and income class.
Neither of us were very religious in the traditional sense so we also imagined a world without all the various sects and religious opinions that cause so much grief. We believed that humankind will have advanced past the obligation to join a church, synagogue, temple, etc. We would have finally learned to get along with one another.
Mark and I were equally optimistic about the future of knowledge. In our minds, we projected that high school age pupils of the year 2,000 would have the intelligence level of college graduates. College graduates would have the intelligence of Albert Einstein. Stupidity and ignorance would be as rare as the dodo bird. Oh, if that were only true today.
We enjoyed our futurism visits on many nights. Not only was it great fun and mental exercise; but it was an interest we avidly shared. I wish Mark was still around so we could have another whack at predicting the future. Oh well, I have bluejayblog. I’ll probably touch on this subject some time in the future. Hopefully not too far into the future.
The Blue Jay of Happiness wonders what happened to the climate controlled domed nest of the future.