Better Living Through Technology

So, I double checked my calendar this morning. 

We’re nearly 1/3rd of the way through the year 2011.  More than a full decade into the 21st Century now and I gotta level with you.  I’m starting to feel like I was gypped.  Like I was sold a bill of goods when I was a kid that never got delivered on.

What am I talking about?  The future, of course.

Maybe I just spent too much time reading science fiction novels and watching The Jetsons when I was a kid but by now, I FULLY expected to be living IN the future.

You know, the FUTURE future.

Wearing a space suit to work every day.  Riding in a flying car.  Taking vacations to Mars.  Living in a house with robot maids and other totally plausible stuff like that.  And yet, I continue to find myself stuck in a future that continues to look suspiciously like the past.

As I sit here at this old fashioned wooden desk today, I am wearing blue jeans and a tee shirt.  The jeans are annoyingly snug at the waist and there is some kind of purplish stain, possibly jelly, on the shirt.  Not exactly worthy of space travel if you know what I mean.

My car is a 4 cylinder pseudo-wagon with a top cruising speed of around 74 miles per hour.  Downhill. With a tail wind.  I’m no physicist but I believe this falls well short of the speed needed for take off……

My last vacation was to Pittsburgh which is a great place but it ain’t Mars, if you know what I mean.

And believe me when I say there are NO maids of any kind at my house, robot or otherwise.

See?  Totally and completely gypped.

I don’t know who exactly was in charge of designing and delivering that gleaming, problem free, space age future that I was promised as a kid.  It might’ve been NASA.  Or maybe Steven Spielberg.  Or maybe Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry.  In any event, the responsible party obviously fell asleep at the switch.

While I personally do not have the skills to create and deliver the future to you,  I figured the least I could do was throw out 7 off the top of my head ideas for the powers that be to start working on.

Idea #1– This morning I showered with a bar of soap that was roughly the size of a communion wafer.  Since I didn’t discover I was low on soap until I was already soaking wet, my only option was to get out of the shower dripping wet and catch pneumonia while walking out to the hallway to retrieve a new bar of soap. 

Can’t someone invent a shower made entirely out of soap?  I mean the whole thing; walls, faucets, shower head, everything.

That way you’re never out of soap! 

Of course, standing up on a wet shower floor made out of soap could be a problem but I leave the finer points to the more technically minded.  I’m just an idea man.

Idea #2– How about a talking refrigerator that keeps track of what food you put in it and lets you know when you’re running out of certain items? 

I think if that fridge were in my house it would spend all it’s time saying, ”You’re almost out of beer, you’re almost out of beer, you’re almost out of beer.”

Idea #3– I love the beauty of a natural landscape as much as the next person but who has the time these days to create and maintain one of those Better Homes and Gardens kind of yards?  Not me.  Why not have a yard full of digitally simulated plants and shrubs built around a lawn that looks and feels exactly like the real stuff but never requires mowing or watering? 

Sure, we lose a little bit on the carbon exchange thing but think of all the extra time you’d have to watch sports on TV every weekend.

Idea #4– Since my kids are still little, at least 50% of everything they attempt to eat or drink inevitably ends up on the floor.  I’m sure we’ve all spilled water onto hot cement and watched it magically evaporate, right?  Cant’ someone invent flooring for the home using that same technology? 

Just think, anything you spill either magically evaporates or gets absorbed into the flooring itself.  Walking around on a super heated floor could be a slight problem but we’ll deal with that in the beta testing phase.

 Idea #5– We’re all familiar with the old adage about dress for success, right?  But who wants to spend every spare moment ironing their clothes or running back and forth between the dry cleaners?  Why not invent a hermetically sealed closet that steams your clothes for you WHILE they’re just hanging there doing nothing anyway?  Add in a fine temperature adjustment feature and you could probably cure meat right in the same closet!

Idea #6– As long as we’re dealing with the scatological……Did you ever live with someone who gets overly aggressive with your bathroom towels?  You know what I’m talking about…..someone who’s forgotten that towels are for DRYING yourself off and not for thoroughly cleaning every orifice on the human body?  What about creating DNA sensitive shower towels that spell out the name of the offending party and turns his skin temporarily purple?  That’d probably eliminate that problem entirely, wouldn’t it?

Wait.  Scratch that idea.

In my house that person is, uh, me.

So, there’s still a few kinks to work out.

But if you wanna take some of these ideas and run with ‘em, go ahead.

No charge.

And if you happen to have Judy Jetson’s phone number, send it my way.

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