As Caffeinated Politics turns 12 years old I re-post the second article which appeared on this site. From July 2006 comes a memory or two about an old Scholastic Magazine. Though the pen I mention in the post is no longer pictured, the words still resonate.
I was reminded over the past few weeks that I have always had an opinion about many topics and also have had a long time fixation about writing down my thoughts. Stored in the upper closet of my childhood bedroom were boxes of journals and writings that I finally moved to my home. I have been reading some of them and find I have always been relentless about topics I cared about.
Having had nephews and nieces in my family I had a few salted comments for those who used cloth diapers that leaked, though I did comment on the economic benefit of the cloth items. My damp legs as an uncle were great fodder for the pen and page as was the fact that Lucille Ball smoked. I adored her comedy but it seems there was a period of time I was quite dismayed to find she used cigarettes. It was the closet I ever was to becoming a Puritan.
As I read those old pieces which covered a wide variety of topics I have reflected on how many more news and information resources I have today to utilize in my quest to be knowledgeable about the world. While I was more informed as a child about history and current events than my peers, in retrospect I knew little as compared with kids who grow up now with cable TV and the internet.
In one of the boxes was a favorite magazine of mine while I was in grade school. An older sibling had given me a copy of Scholastic Magazines’ U.S. and World Affairs Annual from 1966, which I treasured, though by the time I had it in the mid-70’s the world was changing. It contained a small atlas, information on every nation such as capitals and languages spoken and was kept in my folder with a writing pad. I would use it to locate countries I would hear about on the radio or read about in our daily newspaper.
That magazine from 1966 was on my desk this week as I was searching Google Earth for the locations of the events unfolding in the Middle East. The same interests in locating exact places on the map and gaining a better understanding of the world still resides within me but the means that are now at my disposal to gain information are enormous. My bookshelves bulge with historical atlases, geographical dictionaries, and reference books of all types, including even the encyclopedia of espionage.
So much has changed from the time when radio and the daily newspapers were the ways we got our news back home and as a kid I would take a pen and pad and write about things I thought about or was concerned over. Today I write with a computer and when I need to get the exact quote or the precise fact on a particular item I jump on the internet and have the information in seconds.
And yet as I looked at that old magazine this week I was reminded of warm and fuzzy thoughts of childhood. So as I put my blog site together this week I added the pen at the top of the banner to remind myself of how far I have come in the information age, and yet how many of my interests are still the same as when I was a kid.