I just read an amazing article about the Top 25 Things Vanishing From America.
Some of them are obvious: fax machines, homes without cable TV, drive-in theaters, etc. These are mostly gadgets and ways of doing things that technological advancements have improved into oblivion.
Pit toilets is on the list. I won't miss those, will you?
Other things on the list will be certainly missed by those of us over fifty who will soon be boring our grandkids with wistful reminiscences that begin, "When I was a boy..." These include newspapers, magazines, barbecue charcoal and the family farm.
The decline of the worldwide honey bee population is the one that startles me the most. Imagine one-third of all humans disappearing from the face of the Earth in just the past sixteen months. It sounds like the plot of a science fiction horror flick but that's exactly what has happened to honey bees.
When I was a boy...
...we feared for our bare feet in suburban lawns, parks and playgrounds that were all infested by hundreds of the vicious, stinging insects toiling in the white clover.
They were everywhere, remember? Who didn't get stung at least once every summer? Who among us didn't capture them in jars we prepared with fresh grass and flower buds for their enjoyment?
Your grandkids will probably never do that. Very likely they'll never be stung by a bee. Their kids may never even see one.
I'm sure technology will find a way to compensate agricultural industries for the loss of the honey bee. But I think it's very sad, just the same.
When a bee stung us we cried because it hurt, but a large part of the pain was in knowing that while we would survive in discomfort to eventual full recovery the bee, itself, would die from its defensive attack.
That's a metaphor our grandkids really need.