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Time flies

Well, she made it. My oldest daughter, Ally, got her first grown-up job. She was very proud and excited, as am I. She is working in hospital administration in Jonesboro. It just seems like yesterday she was born and now she is a 24-year-old woman. I have to admit it really made the phrase "time flies" come to mind. It also started me thinking about all the things that have happened in the last 24 years and how they have changed our world.

Naturally, we all think about the changes that computers and technology have brought to our lives in the past 24 years. The internet has become a major part of many of our lives, both personally and professionally. It has changed the way business is done and the way many of us use our time. Google allows us with the stroke of a few keys to have access to information that would have been unthinkable just 24 years ago.

Facebook has more than 1 billion of us interacting in ways we never thought possible just a few years before. In some ways, we are closer as a society because of it, but in other ways I think it pulls us further apart.

Digital television, music and books have changed how we entertain ourselves and spend our free time. There are fewer and fewer of us that remember cassette tapes, and even CDs have become dinosaurs? And just to show how old I am, I can remember when we got our first color television.

Phones are now "smart" and in some cases make me feel dumb. They do everything from get email and text messages, to surf the internet and give you driving directions. I have trouble figuring out how to place a call on some of them.

Cars are now "smart" too. Some of them will drive and park themselves and even talk to you. I have to admit, I wouldn't mind having one of those. Especially when my 8-year-old starts giving me driving tips from the back seat.

At some point in the last 24 years, green became everyone's favorite color. There are green products for everything from bowling balls to office buildings. I even saw recycled crackers the other day. Really, crackers?

Medicine has advanced in leaps and bounds in the past two decades. New treatments for disease such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer have proved very successful. People are living longer and more productive lives. I just wish I could figure out what some of those pharmaceutical commercials on television are trying to sell. They keep telling me to ask my doctor, but then they give me a list of possible side effects of the medication that make me think I don't want to come within 50 feet of that pill.

Take, for instance, the sleep aid Ambien, the information guide says: "After taking Ambien, you may get up out of bed while not being fully awake and do an activity that you do not know you are doing. The next morning, you may not remember that you did anything during the night. These activities may include; driving a car ("sleep driving"), making and eating food, talking on the phone, having sex, and walking around."

Some people have even committed murder and used the fact that they have taken a sleep aid medication as their defense. I'm not sure I would categorize creating a world of sleep driving killer zombies as a medical advancement, but hey, we all need to get more sleep, right?

It is amazing the things that have changed since Ally was born. I wonder what the world will be like 24 years from now. In some ways it makes me feel old, but in other ways it invigorates me to think of the possibilities. I am excited to see what the future holds and what our world will be like for our children and grandchildren.

Editorial on 12/03/2017

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