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Tuesday,July 23,2019
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Old things; the need to revert back in confusing times

 

As our society grows and develops greater technology, it seems more and more people long for a time when things were slower, and in some cases, even a little more uncomfortable.  Let’s call it nostalgia, which originally means to miss one's hometown or the past.  This likely occurs because we are supplied with numerous goods at an unbelievable supply and this supply comes far too quickly leaving us with little time to adapt.  Just as we are starting to be accustomed to the brand-new goods, Boom! Here’s another and then another. We’re bombarded overnight with the newest innovation.

Is it not all pointless?  How many more things do we really need to be satisfied with our lives? How many new services, goods and even people do we really need to be happy? There was a time when we shared a real connection with people but now, with the exception of things like face time, video chatting and emoticons we just go through the motions when we speak on our mobile phones. The internet is even less personal as we build fake personalities on the internet and seldom reveal our real character to other netizens. 'Smart phones', which put everything at our finger tips, isolate us even more. Social network services were supposed to resolve the matter in a way that people could express their thoughts or feelings about their lives in cyber-space, and their friends could comment on them after seeing the texts or pictures.

In the real world, however, we probably will never even meet with those people and speak about those matters. Isn’t it all just a farce? Isn’t it just a great illusion which makes us feel as if we live in a society that is closely connected?

This is the sacrifice we make to save time. No time to send a letter, then we send an e-mail or text message.  Of course this should not be how we send all of our messages. Nobody wants to receive an e-mail for crucial matters like a proposal or an apology.  For matters of the heart, more time is surely needed.  For matters of the fact, wouldn’t you rather have a picture from a film camera or a cassette tape? Don’t you think those goods hold more value?  They certainly allow us to reminisce a lot easier and hold on to our precious memories. This is probably why we still end up returning to our favorite restaurants or pubs in secluded areas, or back alleys. This is where many old customers come to relive their memories every day.  These places may even now be too small to eat or drink comfortably by modern standards, and the grumpy hosts may even treat their valued customers impolitely.  Yet we still visit. The reason is because we want to go back to our roots and have an honest relationship with the real world.

There is a recently released film called Sunny that is about kids who grew up in the 80’s, and it has sold over three million tickets. This is because people were happy to revisit those times.  The 'Cest si bon' craze has also led many people to want to reconnect with their pasts.  We are in our twenties now and we will feel this later too. Let’s preserve our connection with the past now. Why wait for the future? It will be here before you know it.

Yun Seon-ju  besensible@dongguk.edu

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