The short video above provides a rare look into the old S.L. Allen factory in Philadelphia, which I mentioned (and showed a photo of) in Yesterday's Blog Post. It shows not only Flexible Flyer sleds being made, but Planet Jr. planters, and walk-behind tractors too. The company even made snow skis.
The film provides a historical glimpse into a bygone era. America was once a country full of people who made things and, for the most part, made things to last (planned obsolescence was surely not something that S.L. Allen believed in).
I think that hands-on work-making-things is the next best thing to hands-on-work-growing-things.
But now, most Americans don't grow or make much of anything with their hands. They sit at cubicles and "work" on keyboards. Or they push buttons on machines and watch the machines do the work that humans once had more of a hand in doing.
The bottom line is that we all do what we have to do to provide for ourselves and our families in the techno-culture we live in. But there is surely a richness and satisfaction in life that comes with hand-work, and creativity outside of the modern paradigm.
If we can't find this satisfaction in our daily livelihood, we can at least pursue it at home, on our own time.
But the culture we live in seeks to dominate and consume our spare time with an endless stream of entertainment, amusements, and techno-gadgetry. Such things are a cheap substitute for actually doing something constructive and creative.
I hope I'm wrong, but I sense that many of the younger generation today are missing out on this important aspect of life.
Probably every older generation going back to the earliest days of the industrial revolution have thought and said the same thing of the younger generation.