Way back in 1954, E.B. White had this to say when speaking of Henry David Thoreau:
“In our uneasy season, when all men unconsciously seek a retreat from a world that has got almost completely out of hand, his house in the Concord woods is a haven. In our culture of gadgetry and the multiplicity of conveniences his cry, ‘Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!’ has the insistence of a fire alarm.”
Oh, if Thoreau could only see us now! Talk about a culture of gadgetry! Yesterday, one of my students told me he was tired because he was up late.
“Homework?” I asked, though that was purely wishful thinking.
“I was texting,” he replied.
I wonder what Thoreau would have thought if he’d seen an irobot self-propelled vacuum cleaner. Or a Keurig. Or a Kindle.
I am not advocating for a house in the Concord woods, though a nice little woodsy retreat would be nice. And I don’t think we need to live like the Amish. But, I do think we could all do with a little less tech and a little slower pace.