Saturday, August 29, 2009

Wheels of Time

374 days left.

Every year there is a show in Macungie where car collectors bring their old, fixed up "beauties" and drive them around the town. Some are really fun and others bring back a variety of memories. Most of the cars are 40+ years old.

It got me thinking about memorabilia, collectibles and antiques. What do you suppose will be the collectibles from today in 50 years? I've got this list of things that I just might squirrel away in the hope of future value. At least I would if I had any of them. How about the original Ipod? VHS tapes, Pfalzcraft white dishes (the original thick ones, not the current thin ones), "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" first edition, "Eragon" first edition, maybe any printed books, Original Igloo cooler, film cameras, Bill's Pathfinder, silk flowers, IPhone, Wii (or any current game system). Will the pen and pencil be gone? Will everything be digitally rendered? What other new technologies will blossom from the Internet?

I've started taking pictures around town to record the way things are now. In the 15 years we've been in our house, the landscape has changed from farm land to developments. Strip malls are now along Rt 100, fast food chains within 3 miles of our house (which used to be in the middle of nowhere), three new schools built, Walmart, etc. The point is as we go about our day to day lives, big and little changes happen and before you know it, you don't recognize the place. Ten years ago (or was it 11?) we went to Minot Air Force Base for a wedding. I lived there in 1974-75. In roughly 25 years, even the base had changed that I couldn't find the house where we lived.

Most things that are collectible today, I have no interest in collecting - but I do like to see them. One fun collection is lunch boxes. I don't know if you had one, but I had a red plaid metal lunch box with a matching thermos. It fit inside the square body of the lunch box and was held in place by a metal hook. The inside of the box was all white and shiny. There was room for a sandwich, Tastycake and an apple. The apple always smashed the sandwich and the Tastycake. The sandwich was in a wax paper bag. It was usually Lebanon bologna and Miracle whip. There was milk in the thermos (luke cold).

I can still smell it. I didn't like the smell then, I don't like it now!!! I would never have believed that anyone would collect lunchboxes. So I ask you again what will be collectible in 50 years???

I really have no vision - or I would have collected Pez dispensers!



Bill said...

I think the most valuable thing to collect is "memories". When I was at Nags Head I was with family that I don't see very often and we invariable discuss memories. One family member wanted me to verify a story that happened 50 years ago to his father. I was there and I did verify it. I hadn't thought about that story in 50 years but we laughed about it in Nags Head because it was funny but also because it connected the past with the present. It was a great moment.

Someone once asked the question, "If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it fall, does the tree make a noise?"

It occurs to me that memories aren't very collectable unless they are shared and kept alive by repeating them. In fact they may grow in value (and humor) as the stories get repeated over the years, being embellished over the passage of time.

So I wonder what people will say about me 50 years from now? Maybe I shouldn’t think about that. Most present things are not recognized as collectables. “Memories”, by definition are thoughts of the past. The value as a collectable memory comes over time – as long as we keep the memories alive.

Anonymous said...

I think I remember you carrying that red plaid lunch box. :-)


Dave said...

Just catching up on your posts Linda. You are doing really stellar at posting regularly! First of all- this is my fav post. And I was glad to see Dad writing his thoughts about it. Made me think too.