My Cappuccino and Our Changing World

I’m starting my day this morning with a vanilla cappuccino, which I don’t drink often.   The first cappuccino I ever had was at Heathrowe Airport in London in 1994 as a freshman in college.  I was stuck at the airport, not able to get on a flight.   I met a British, college-age girl during a bomb threat who offered to buy me a “cappuccino.”   This was during the pre-Starbucks revolution in the United States, so I didn’t know what a cappuccino was.  I played it cool, and said “sure” like I was an expert at coffee drinks.  This drink seemed exotic, European and a unique cultural experience.  I had a nice, innocent conversation with this young lady, and never saw her again.

This morning I fixed a very tasty cappuccino by myself in an inexpensive machine at the office.  Gourmet coffee drinks are as common as McDonald’s, which offers a wide variety of them.  In 1994 I didn’t have a cell phone (very few did),  so I remember using calling cards at the pay phone to update my parents on my flight situation, as they waited at their house by the land-line.  I didn’t have an e-mail account and their wasn’t even a uniform internet browser to host things like My Space, Facebook or Twitter.    Texting was incomprehensible.     A college student today could meet a new friend, and could use the iphone “bump” app to instantly exchange information, and they could network dozens of different ways.

Many things around us do not change quickly or noticeably.   A tree grows slowly.   A traditional downtown squares remains basically the same for decades.  A bridge has been used 70 years.   Those physical constants can make us feel like things are not changing much.  However, when we look at non-physical things like technology, globalism and ideas, we are changing more rapidly than we can comprehend.

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