“Look at every path closely and deliberately, then ask ourselves this crucial question: Does this path have a heart? If it does, then the path is good. If it doesn't, it is of no use.” ~Carlos Castaneda

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Is Andy Rooney out of touch ...

“Wisdom ceases to be wisdom when it becomes too proud to weep,
too grave to laugh, and too selfish to seek other than itself.”
~Kahlil Gibran

Cell phones
Video Games
Podcasts ...
These are things that are here that were not present at the beginning of the 20th century. This is the technology of the 21st century. These have become a part of the everyday life in todays America. Most of our college students today could not remember a time without them.
News paper
Milk man
Great Depression
Prohibition ...
These are popular things from the time of Andy Rooney's birth. These are things from a distant past. This list resembles what may be found in a time capsule retrieved by the residents of a small town.

I watch 60 minutes every once and a while. It makes me feel really old because I always thought it was a show for "old" people. At the end of every show, Andy Rooney gives an editorial statement on some random topic. It usually starts out with some sort of list. He will go on about how he doesn't understand why people do this or that now a days. Most of his comments seem very out of date. His comments seem old and unadapted to the world today. So, is Andy Rooney out of touch with what is current? Are his ways of looking at the world dated?

Well, Andy Rooney was born 1/14/19 and is of the G.I. generation, just before the silent generation. Many of the elders of this generation and the silent generation are now retired from their orthopaedic practices. These are the elders. Many still attend annual meetings and are advisors, consultants, and emeritus professors. Are they like Andy Rooney and out of touch and out of date? Do they still believe that the arthroscope is the tool of the devil?

I refer to these people of these past generations (G.I., silent, and baby boomer) as elders because they are. In our society today unlike in the past, many of the older generations have been looked at as old, out of date, and not providing any useful input into such a technologically driven world. I would like to make it clear that in the medical community, the wisdom provided by the years of experience of the elders sometimes far out ways the technologically savvy "whipper snapper." The elders help to bring some clarity.

In orthopaedics, most of the "new techniques" have been tried in the past. Many young orthopaedic surgeons have discovered "new techniques" to realizes the they are more like Christopher Columbus than Thomas Edison. The elders bring the experience of the past and the wisdom from those previous failure. It was usually the failures that prevented any further advancement of a technique. When rediscovered by the younger generation, with fresh eyes they were willing to experiment with newer or lost techniques. It is important that these ideas are tempered by the elders. There needs to be a reminder of previous errors so that we do not repeat them.

Is the older generation out of touch and out of date? They probably are, but they provide wisdom. Many of the elders have great stories of the past. Stories of how things were when they were young; when they were "whipper snappers." These stories are past from generation to generation. It helps to keep us from repeating the past failures. The elders should be revered as in tribal society. We should listen and respect them. So, they don't know how to use this thing we call the internet. In their mind, the mouse is a rodent and the blackberry a fruit. Many elders have forgotten more than most residents and young surgeons know. The elders have put in their time. They have made their mark. Today, all they ask is that you listen.


Stand still. The trees ahead and the bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying

No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a branch does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.

~ by David Whyte
“I know what I have given you.
I do not know what you have received”

~Antonio Porchia

1 comment:

Chrysalis said...

Beautifully said. Loved "Lost" by David Whyte.