Thursday, October 10, 2013

They Don't Make them Like they Used To

A common phrase used with each generation

"They don't make them like they used to."

Think of cars.  Those autos from the 1950's were huge, metal gas guzzeling cars.  A different time, with gas at .05 cents a gallon, who cared if it only got 10 miles to the gallon?  Beautiful works of art, fenders, tail fins, large bumpers.  No seat belts, no air bags, rolling death traps.

Think of craftsmanship.  Fingered drawers, crown molding around the ceilings.  The meticulous attention to detail.  Now we have press wood furniture you can buy in a box and put together (I was going to put in an hour, but sometimes it takes me much longer to assemble that stuff!)

Books and movies have also evolved.  I was watching an old 80's movie a few weeks ago.  The lines were a bit stiff, the villains smiled and rubbed their hands together when things were going their way.  The music came up when the hero was struggling.  Yea, it was cheezy.  And yet, I kind of miss some of that stuff as well.

The books have gone to show not tell, very very well.  I don't mind thinking about things when I read, but sometimes I miss the hints.  The movies are well put together, fast paced, the villains are the hero in there own right.  A lot of grey area, a lot to give people things to think about.  The quality is very much higher than the older stuff.

And yet....

There is a lot to be said in the classic older stories.  I like great music in the movies.  I love the theme songs.  Those are no longer in.  The conflict is a bit more subtle now.

So, yea, they don't make things like they used to.  In some ways things are better now than then.  Yet there is still a lot of great things on those book shelves, and in the film archives.  Don't sell them short because they are classics.  Classics teach us a lot if we will just take the time to savor them.

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