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|The Non-Remembrance of Things Past - Page 10|
What's the Big Deal? Why Is All This So Disturbing?
Sometimes you wonder whether you even need a memory anymore. Just as calculators made mastering the slide rule unnecessary, with each Internet-laden day that goes by, Google may be rendering memory obsolete (or, at least, its loss less significant). For nowadays, wherever you are, whenever you need it, anything you want to know can just be . . . well, Googled.14 With a Google-armed Blackberry in hand, what's the problem?
No matter how sweet and inviting the lure of these technological sirens may be, you aren't quite ready to surrender your memory to them. For, even if the day should ever dawn when a personal jet pack could somehow transport you anywhere you wished, so that you'd never have to walk again, you'd still want your legs to be in full working order. Just in case.
Besides, there's always the ultimate nightmare were you to give in and let it all slide. If you can't remember first this, then that, and then those and these, eventually—and maybe not too far off from now—more and more of who you are will become unavailable, inaccessible, beyond your reach. And then? Well, perhaps your descent will eventually bring you to that point where one fine day—much like the absentminded druggist in your neighborhood did 45 years ago—you forget to dress yourself before you go out and proceed to parade down the street without your pants on. What would be next? Forgetting who you are? where you are? your underwear, too? Is all your waking life destined to become as surreal as a dream?