Back in high school I had a great English teacher (I may not have left him with that impression at the time) that was very into science fiction. He made us read Robert A. Heinlein and all 1200 pages of Atlas Shrugged, but I also discovered Douglas Adams and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (A series of books now known as a “trilogy in five parts.” If fact, if you’re feeling particularly smug some day go ask a bookseller for the fifth book in the Hitchhiker Trilogy and see if they flinch.)
There’s an underground of H2G2 followers that can frame any argument or challenge with a bit of advice from the series. The other night I was reading – The Salmon of Doubt: Hitchhiking the Galaxy One Last Time. It is a posthumous collection of previously unpublished material by Adams and consists largely of essays about technology and life experiences.
I stumbled across this bit of wisdom and thought to myself this is the perfect way to frame the reluctance some small business owners feel when it comes to new technology and, in particular, social media.
In the words of Adams:
“Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works. Anything that’s invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it. Anything invented after you’re thirty-five is against the natural order of things.” — Douglas Adams
I don’t know what to do with this so much as to accept its reality, don’t panic, and be mindful of it as I continue to marvel and the brave new world we live in.
Image credit: jonathanjoni