Thursday, February 9, 2017

Morning Thoughts: Miracles and their use …

C.W. and I were talking …

He noticed I seemed in a pensive mood and offered his normal sympathetic entree, “What’s eating you, Big Dope?”

I explained that I was thinking of topographic maps. That puzzled him. Those are maps used in my profession that show representations of ground relief, usually using contour lines. The best and most expensive are prepared by professional surveyors.

The cheap ones can be assembled from topographic maps prepared by the United States Geological Survey. That’s what we did years ago. I spent many a day or two, in my early career as an urban planner, assembling such maps for a specific property, city, or region. It involved multiple trips, sometimes, to agencies, photographers, and printers. The final result was a taped-up affair presented to a draftsperson for use in a project.

He wanted to know why I was thinking about it.

I told him, “current times.”

“Current times?”

“Yep. Want to know what it takes to produced such a map today?”

“Enlighten me.”

“Maybe half-dozen punches on a computer keyboard.”


“That’s just a personal example of the miracles of the digital age and for what marvelous things a computer may be used.”

“Why does that bother you?”

I pointed to my computer screen. He looked. There, on a social media website, someone had accused one of his dear friends of being a baby-killing cult member because of his socio-political view of the world. The time-stamp indicated a point well into evening “drink time.”

"How long do you think it took to develop that friendship?"

He thought before he spoke, a bit unusual for him. "Maybe years. Many years."

"How long to produce such anger?"

He thought long and hard this time. "A year or so, if one watches the right TV networks and listens to the right radio stations. Some of the churches your species has produced could speed the process. Hours on hours of concentrated effort might shorten it to months."

"And this posting?" I pointed to the message on my computer screen again.

“That only took one punch on a computer keyboard,” He said.

It takes eons of love to built a city.
Hate can destroy one in days. - C.W.

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