How do I explain New Years Eve 1999 to my daughters?
I'm reflecting and wondering:
Where are all the people that were convinced and tried to convince me, that the world was about to shit it's pants?
I don't get rattled very easily (except cats with rabies and air travel turbulence) and I'm far from naiive (does that come off as egotistical?) so as a 19 year old in London I was aghast that much older, grown adults were actually obsessing about the end of life as we know it. Y2K. Why two? And Why K?
National Geographic says "The Y2K bug was a computer flaw, or bug, that may have caused problems when dealing with dates beyond December 31, 1999." It was this or that and MAY have....NOTHING, nothing happened.
Here's 1999 me, partying hard, like you do at 19 in London (a long way from Australia), raving even, being told that the digital end is nigh and I'm thinking, bloody hell, I only just got an email address a couple of months ago. My Mum was going to be pissed that I would be phoning collect again!
Again, teenage brain at work, no consideration for the IT people who were concerned that their livelyhood was a stake. And with the media feeding the general population's neurosis and doing very well at it, this situation in time really was consumed by the threat that may be. And since that time we've seen multiple instances of threatened impending doom and *ahem* nothing happens. Mayan calendar 2012 anyone?
So how would my girls react? They'd laugh. I would laugh at them laughing. We would get suckered down a rabbit hole laughing all the way about the humanness of people and the conversation would roll onto other events and a follow up with me telling them about the time I left a coffee on the roof of my car and managed to drive one kilometer down the road before realising, rescue my coffee and they'd be impressed. Having small versions of yourself is good like that, they still laugh at most of my stories and jokes. I edit out the parts of stories like when we got a new car~ yay! (And it was because Mum filled the tank with petrol when it was a diesel van. Boo.)
Anyway, by circumstances only, we've had no television since 2014 and not only because we couldnt afford one or didnt have the room or power supply to cope with one, but because I myself feel sensitive to the mainstream media and I noticed it in my daughters. 99% of the news is not necessary for me to view. 100% is not necessary for them to view.
I remember finding Sunny curled up on the couch in our old house out in the valley, almost catatonic watching the shocking floods in Brisbane years ago when the city and more rural suburbs were swallowed by water and there were sharks spotted cruising past the local McDonalds in Goodna.
We now live in a place where we experience the odd earthquake, we find abandoned kittens and puppies, we see poverty just outside our front door. We get text messages for critical blood donations, we cross the street to avoid inhaling burning plastic, we talk to our friends who work saving rainforests and photographing endangered species and other friends working in HIV clinics or with disabled kids, refugees, orphans and then dying mothers, their babies and we know we're not missing out on turning on the damn telly and watching the news.