A few random observations… kind of “are these signs of the times?” observations…
#1 — There Are Fewer, Far Fewer, Newspapers Delivered On Our Block Than In The Past
My wife and I have paid for a newspaper to be delivered to our home every day of our married life. When our boys were young, and we were on vacation, I would give them money to go in search of a newspaper to bring to me.
Now, I go out to pick up our paper, glance at the headlines, and hand it to my wife, who sits and reads it, section by section. Me? I go to the news sites I check on my computer or iPad.
And, here’s the signal of the change – I used to see newspapers in the front yards of practically every house on our block. This morning, I counted three newspapers within eyesight, including ours. (And I went out fairly early).
No wonder newspapers are facing such difficulty.
#2 — Retirement Communities Are Providing Programming To Provide Intellectual Stimulation
For over 20 years, I have spent a few sessions each month at retirement communities, speaking on “Current Events.” My opening line has always been the same: “My name is Randy Mayeux, and I am here to talk about what’s in the news.”
This morning, in our Dallas Morning News, there was a flier for a Retirement Community, with a full page on its “Discovery University.” They are bringing in lecturers for the residents of their community — and using that as a “marketing tool.”
The more such a place can help keep the intellectual life of its residents alive, the more engaged, and the healthier, will be the residents… I’m a big fan of this trend.
#3 — The Changes And Threats And Opportunities Just Keep On Coming
I read this morning that WalMart sales are pretty “flat.” The big box stores are threatened; the new competitors are changing the retail landscape.
And new apps and products just keep coming.
And there is a growing chorus of folks who believe that robotics and software are a threat to a large and expanding number of jobs.
And, we want our speed. This morning’s Dallas Morning News has an article about a much faster internet service making its debut in parts of Dallas. Faster, faster, faster. That’s what we all want…
The changes, they keep on coming.
#4 — And, Some Big, Long-Term Problems Have Not Been Solved
Racial conflict is still a problem. A big problem.
The world is still so very dangerous in areas where we have invested, for years (decades), money and weapons and lives.
As the Freakonomics guys put it, the easy problems are all solved. Whatever problems that remain are not easy to solve.
No, they aren’t.