Change is constant, but put people first

It seems to be a time when everything changes. Fast. Too fast. Some people like change. Some people don’t. Not every change, good or bad, pleases everybody.

I’m recalling a kind of old-time joke — my style — when the crank of the town was asked about change. He replied, “I’ve seen lots and been against every damn one.”

Don’t think I’ll go that far. I loved movies in living color. I love DVD discs that shoot real movies in Technicolor on a screen. Wow! I can turn my living room — great room a new fangled description — into a theater by pulling down a hidden screen and connecting an EPSON projector. I can watch, with great delight, 30 hours of Sherlock Homes half-hour TV segments in black and white and love every minute. I can remember in the first grade watching Rin Tin Tin on a white sheet in a classroom. It was a treat we got when we were good kids. My father bought me a toy film projector so I could watch cartoon characters race about on a white wall. No sound and the film had to be rewound on a reel and kept in a safe place. I could watch the same magic over and over and over, but I loved Rin Tin Tin best.

I didn’t like it when we had to drive the car to San Francisco instead of taking the ferry. I loved cold, foggy days and the smell of good soup inside. I loved to walk on the deck in the fog, snuggled warm. I loved fog. Weather. Climate changer. Global warming. Don’t like that much. I accept the fact we are experiencing this change and hope someone figures out a way to slow it down. This is a change that bodes no one on the planet good. What did we used to say? “It’s an ill wing that bids no one good.” This is one.

I don’t like over population and huge dirty cities where people live stacked on each others shoulders. A high-rise, to me, is a monstrosity. I must feel the earth beneath my feet. Climb and sit in a tree. Even at 84. Clean stalls, make compost, groom a mudder — that’s a horse who loves to roll in the mud.

That the sound of birds — singing, crowing, tweeting, trilling, raking fallen leaves with clawed feet and munching worms and other creepy crawlies — has been displaced with the sound of motorcycles, revving engines, growling trucks, boom boxes, horns, traffic, drones, helicopters, jets and other annoying what nots, offend my ears.

Ticky tacky dwellings — suburban sprawl-lined hump roof to hump roof, eating up space and rich soil saddens my sense of order. We used to sing, “Don’t fence me in.” Today, we sing of paved paradise.

I hope it will never be I who decide which changes must be made and hope they who must make them, think of the common good, of the planet, of the living things who abide here and not of cipher in banks and paper in wallets and pockets. They who put profit first. Living things nowhere.

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Bettejo Dux is an author and Kauai resident.

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