The French have a saying: “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.”
It means, the more things change, the more they stay the same. And it’s probably true.
Nevertheless, I despise change.
Call me a fat, conservative Luddite if you like, but I leave well enough alone.
When I was a teenager I spent endless hours at Radio Shack looking at the eight-tracks, turntables and CB radios. But I was gobsmacked when Radio Shack changed its name to The Source.
Deep Throat was a source. An unnamed person in the premier’s office is a source. But not my beloved Radio Shack.
Mind you, name change or no, I still love shopping there.
But I do have a few questions: For instance, why should I buy a router for my computer? Is it better than a circular saw?
And when did they start selling fruit? I can buy blackberries and apples at QF.
And is it true? Are they really branching out into dentistry? Because the salesman keeps asking if I have a blue tooth.
People shouldn’t mess around with hockey either.
Take the new point system adopted by the league in 2005. Teams used to get two points for a win, one for a tie and bupkis if they lost.
But in the new NHL, even if you lose in overtime, you still get a point! What is this anyway, the socialist hockey league?
And why is it that every child gets a trophy these days?
When I was a kid, if we lost we got nothing. And we still cheered the other team because we were learning the value of good sportsmanship. Nowadays too many kids are texting taunts to learn fair play.
What’s next, robocalls?
I’m reminded of a Saturday afternoon when I was still living in small-town Alberta. I was bringing my garbage to the dump and some young guy was throwing out a lovely old Victrola. My brother went over to inspect it and found it had been smashed with a hammer.
“Why on earth would anyone do that?” I fumed.
Jay asked him about it later.
“Because it was old and needed work. So I busted it up.”
Which brings me to a practical precept: If it ain’t fixed, don’t break it!
Even our currency is very ‘au courant’ these days.
Call me old-fashioned if you like, but I miss the $1 bill. But that doesn’t make me some kind of a ‘loonie,’ does it?
Obviously, social mores have changed too.
A while back I visited a co-ed tennis club. I was shocked at the cursing, yelling and smashing of rackets.
And the men were even worse!
Since time immemorial middle-aged guys have been claiming things were better in the good old days. And now I’m one of them. “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.”
Nevertheless, preserving the past is no sin.
Remember, even if it ain’t fixed, don’t break it.
Ray Smit is a regular humour columnist for The News.