Saturday, 4 January 2014

Living in Dystopia

00:00:00 Posted by Ashley Lister , 3 comments
 by Ashley Lister

 The thing that I always find fascinating about our interpretation of the future is that most of us believe it will be better. To my mind, this indicates two things about the majority of people:

1. They are optimists.
2. They are stupid.

Take politics, as an example. We assume that future politicians will lead us to a better world of flying cars and social equality (at least for those pigs that deserve equality – a related point that we might get back to at another time). We have always believed that future politicians would help make our world a better place.

And yet we’ve ended up with Cameron and Clegg in Downing Street. How in the name of Santa’s foreskin were those two the best options available?

Take food, as another example. I was brought up to believe that future food would be like the protein pills they gave to astronauts: as tasty as a three course meal but the size of an Aspirin.

Instead we’ve ended up with horse-meat burgers from Tesco and Kentucky Fried torture birds. One of our most celebrated chefs, Heston Blumenthal, serves snail porridge at his Michelin-starred restaurant. Is this really a sign that we’ve progressed into a brighter future?

Take entertainment, as yet another example. Shakespeare died 498 years ago. We keep telling ourselves that another storyteller of equal or better ability will come along and wow us with their literary genius.

And then everyone rushes out to buy E L James and Dan Brown.

My point here is: carpe diem; carpe the day; seize the diem; do whatever it takes to live in the now and not dwell on the past or stare miserably toward a future that isn’t going to happen.

The past never really lived up to our rose-tinted retrospectives. The future we face in 2014 is likely to be as meh as all our previously imagined futures.

But TODAY will only be here this once. 


Colin Davies said...

For it is in the wind all those that have past and all those yet to come. It is only now that xqn be effected. Mold the now, and future will fall from the wind and become what is round here on the path underfoot.

Cracking post Ash.

Steve Green said...

Understated as always, Ash! I enjoyed that.

yesterday has gone
and tomorrow never comes
so now is the time.

Ashley R Lister said...

Colin - thank you. I had a giggle writing this one.

Steve - thank you. Love the haiku.