Friday, October 28, 2011

Circular Arguments

I know you like candles. I like candles too. For their time they were a very effective technology that served us well. And I know that the prospect of light bulbs seems scary to you, and you don't trust new-fangled, high-tech solutions to problems you thought were already solved.

But just listen to me for a second.

I've been following this light bulb thing for a while, and using them for some time. So I'm in a good position to say that there's something to it all. And sooner or later, you're going to have to accept that they are better. And no matter how many light-bulb drawbacks you produce or how many arguments you make for the superiority of candles, it won't make a bit of difference.

I'm not saying your candles are going away completely, mind you. They certainly won't be our first choice for lighting needs, but they'll retain a certain place in our society. But if you really were to follow through on what you're saying now-that you'll never use light bulbs and only stick to candles-you're going to look like a crazy person in the long run. And that'll be appropriate, because you will be a crazy person.

Think of it this way. Used to we transported goods with wagons and horses. Then someone came up with railroads. And I'm sure that there was a certain amount of resistance to that too, from people who pointed out the expense of laying all that rail, how they didn't need to ship that fast, how cold and unromantic the rail cars were compared to a good, old fashioned wagon. But looking back, all that seems silly now. And it's clear that those detractors were fueled almost entirely by a fear of change.

So horde your candles if you want.* I'll won't even laugh when you grumpily accept the future, and enjoy it.

*Actually that's a good idea. Once they become a quaint anachronism the price will skyrocket, so long as you can make them smell like baked goods.

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