Can’t hold back the hands of time

Can’t hold back the hands of time!

Last night I happened to catch a movie depicting life in the late 70’s and early 80’s in Chicago. The part of the movie that struck me was when the young couple turned on music to set the mood for the evening. He placed an LP record on the turntable and listened to the music from that record. That very act of choosing a record to compliment the mood and placing it on the turntable of the stereo was a ritual.

At this moment, I am on a flight from St. Louis to San Francisco typing this blog on my iPad listening to Carol King and James Taylor who I once listened to on that same type of stereo in my dorm room and apartment in college.

I remember clearly when my Mom and Dad purchased their first Hi Fi console for our living room. There was one speaker and the turntable was accessed from the wooden lid that was lifted from the top. It was the beginning of a love affair and a passion for music that still lives with my siblings and me today. I remember how my brother Pat and I saved our money to purchase albums of musical’s like Old Man River, Oklahoma and the Music Man. Shortly after that, our Mom’s brother moved in with us and we were exposed to Andy Williams, Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby and Nat Cole.

Even today, before I began this blog as I listened to some music, I was moved by the memories that each song evoked from the past. If someone were watching me, they would know I had ventured back in time by my closed eyes and smile, to that very moment I associated with that song as I closed my eyes. What a gift!

Whenever I hear “My Girl” I think of dancing with my high school crush on the patio of Denny Riesmeyer’s home during a graduation party. Or, when I hear “Suite Judy Blue Eyes” no matter where I hear it I am right back in the coal bin of the ATO House at the U of I where I set up a studio and spent many nights working on projects for school.

Today we live in a digital age that brings with it many exciting advantages beyond the gifts of music and movies and news at our fingertips. Today, with the age of wireless technology, we can create Smart Homes, homes that can be controlled and monitored remotely. In the 70’s, I was building a couple of office buildings for Sachs Properties in Chesterfield as Chesterfield Village was just beginning to grow. Sachs Electric had started a subsidiary company designed to manage energy consumption for commercial and industrial buildings. Today it is rare when there isn’t a conversation, not just about energy management after the structure is in operation, but even how we are going to manage the energy consumption and manage the waste during construction. Just like the digital and wireless age versus the world of manual thermostats and incandescent light bulbs, we have an opportunity to adjust.

Like most change in our lives, for example, like the first time we sat behind the wheel of an automobile or at our computer, it was a bit overwhelming. Creating and living in Smart Homes will be looked back on as the way it should be. And our incandescent bulbs and manual thermostats and traditional sources of energy will be the “good old days”.

Posted in Family/Personal.