We often forget to be grateful for the little things, I think. In the Sixties, remembering to do this was called “stop and smell the flowers.” We rarely do that nowadays. I’m not talking about praising locomotion or penicillin here — nothing that moves the masses or revolutionizes public health. Rather, the more trivial, ‘minor inventions’ that make life just a little bit better.
Here are my Top 10 at the moment, in no particular order:
2) Contact lenses – especially when I’m sweating bullets on my spin bike at the gym, wiping my brow profusely with a thick towel. Nobody enjoys working out with eye glasses on, do they?
3) The Maxi-Cosi. New mothers: you will appreciate the gift of not having to unstrap baby out of one seat and into another every time you need to go somewhere.
4) Pill cutters. I remember watching my German in-laws smashing their tablets with kitchen knives. How delighted they were with this ingenious little contraption!
5) The iPod – As comedian Patton Oswald has so eloquently said (ahem…), compared to vinyl and tapes, all those songs on that tiny little thing is a fr#&% miracle, and nobody cares!
7) Lego – hours of creative fun, without the TV on. Enough said.
8 ) the Sports Bra. Batten down the hatches! No wonder women weren’t doing aerobics in the 1950′s.
9) Pen injectors – on the diabetes front: Man am I glad for these injection devices that look more like ball-point pens than scary medical instruments of puncture.
10) the OmniPod, and now I guess Medingo’s Solo patch as well – insulin pumps were already good; being able to use them without tubing hanging off your body is better.
So in the car on the way to school the other morning, I decided to put the question to my 10-year-old, who generally thinks pretty big.
“What do you think are some of the world’s greatest inventions, Honey?”
“Oh, cars I guess. If we didn’t have cars we’d all just be on horses all the time… and money — definitely money!”
I guess she gets it that without money, you’re limited in the number of conveniences you can enjoy. Touché.
Anybody care to share their personal take on the world’s best ‘minor inventions’?