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Fuel for Thought

Times Change

By Greg Huggins
Posted Feb 12th 2018 3:50AM

 After John Farmer loaded the last of the produce onto his old, nearly worn out wagon, he climbed aboard, grabbed the reins and with a little “hup”, he urged the two old mares to start the journey to town. Slowly, the old tired horses began to pull the heavily laden wagon with the weary farmer along the rutted road towards the market. With creaking wheels and bulging sides, the old wagon had seen better days, but the resourceful farmer had no desire to give it up, beside he didn't want to part with the mares that had served him well over the years. Along the way to town John was passed by Theodore Plowright in his new truck, John preferred the old slower horse drawn wagon over these new automobiles. He had seen plenty of automobiles and even trucks in town when he took his crops to market, but he thought it was a passing fancy and didn't want to spend his hard earned dollars on new equipment when he already had perfectly good horses. He would just continue on as always and the rest of the world would just have to work around him if need be.  And life went on this way until his horses fell ill and there was no way to get the wagon to market. While he procrastinated about whether to buy more horses or get a dreaded automobile, which he despised, the crops were rotting in the fields or going to seed. Finally, John decided he couldn't wait any longer and walked to town to purchase a truck to pull his wagon, only to realize he didn't know how to operate it. With a heavy heart he returned home the same way he had come, on foot. He had waited and resisted new technology and now, although he realizes it, he is now going to have to catch up with society or find another means to earn the money he needs. Make no mistake, John is a very knowledgeable farmer and very capable of using the old methods, but his refusal to move forward with new technology has left him behind. He now realizes that he was his own worst enemy, refusing to adapt to the advancements in agriculture and transportation. Meanwhile, his neighbor Theodore Plowright, had turned his horses to pasture and purchased a truck to pull his wagon a couple of years ago. Teddy also retired his plow horse in favor of a new piece of machinery to pull his plow. Teddy took a new line of thinking as he saw the emerging technologies, not as if this new technology was reinventing the wheel but definitely improving on the design of it. Matthew Carpenter, another neighbor of John Farmer, also saw that these new trucks could help him get his building materials from town and the mills to his customers quicker and easier. He can only build during the daylight hours, so saving time transporting the lumber, paints, tools and hardware he needs to his worksite, gives him more time to complete the work and gain more customers.


In our fast paced society, new technologies seem to pop up almost daily. If we resist too long, we only do ourselves and our businesses a disservice. The longer we hold out, the further behind we will get and it will be that much harder to catch up. We don’t still make spears to hunt, we use modern weapons. We don’t fight wars with swords, we have firearms and technology. We don’t hand crank our vehicles to start them, we turn a key or push a button. We don’t even search for a pay phone, most people have at least one with them. Embrace new technologies, even if it doesn’t work out this time, you can bet someone, somewhere is working on improving it. If a man went into a coma in 1990 and woke up today, he would be astounded at how far technology has come and even be overwhelmed at what he now has to learn all at once to function in our society. Reminisce about the “good old days”, but don’t live in them.


Keep up or get left behind, but don’t try to hold everyone else back just because you refuse to change.


See you down the road,



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