There is nothing new under the sun…turn, turn, turn

The future is no better than the past (vacuuming the dog)

Some futurists assume that problems will be solved in the future world. In the world of Star Trek, humans of all races, Vulcans, and eventually Klingons live together in perfect harmony. And the starship Enterprise (at least when performing routine tasks) always performs admirably.

But other futurists realize that the future world will be as messed up as the present one.

Paleofuture reprinted a Chicago Tribune article from 1959. This article, written by Evelyn Zemke, looked at a housewife in the year 2000 (yes, Zemke assumed that there would be housewives in the year 2000). This housewife pushed a button to prepare breakfast, and another button to start vacuuming (presumably with a Roomba, although Zemke would not have been familiar with that particular brand name).

My husband, arriving at the table exclaims, “Pizza? For breakfast?”

“I pushed the button labeled BACON AND EGGS, but-”

“There’s a wire crossed somewhere. Call a service man.”

(Again, all the servicepeople in the year 2000 are male.)

And later:

“Ki-yi-yi!” Sounds like Fifi, our pet poodle.

My daughter, standing in the doorway, calls, “Mom! The cleaner is vacuuming Fifi!”

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