Coming Soon:

The following books by Robert Paul Wolff are available on Amazon.com as e-books: KANT'S THEORY OF MENTAL ACTIVITY, THE AUTONOMY OF REASON, UNDERSTANDING MARX, UNDERSTANDING RAWLS, THE POVERTY OF LIBERALISM, A LIFE IN THE ACADEMY, MONEYBAGS MUST BE SO LUCKY, AN INTRODUCTION TO THE USE OF FORMAL METHODS IN POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY.
Now Available: Volumes I, II, III, and IV of the Collected Published and Unpublished Papers.

NOW AVAILABLE ON YOUTUBE: LECTURES ON KANT'S CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON. To view the lectures, go to YouTube and search for "Robert Paul Wolff Kant." There they will be.

To contact me about organizing, email me at rpwolff750@gmail.com




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Sunday, April 5, 2015

IT IS A NEW WORLD

Susie is an inveterate gardner and one-time Botanist.  Even now, when we pass a shrub or a tree, she is liable to say, "I can no longer remember the common name for that," and then reel off the Latin name impeccably.  Our little condominium looks like a garden shop, filled with flowering plants of all sorts.  This morning, as I was preparing to post the John Donne poem, I heard a cry of dismay from her.  It seems that the little plastic watering can that she had used for countless years had sprung a leak, and all of its water had flooded onto the floor.  "Where will I get another?" she asked disconsolately.  "I have had it for so long I cannot even recall where I bought it."

I looked on the bottom of the watering can, now broken and useless, and saw a name and model number.  Slightly less than a minute later, I had one-clicked an order for a replacement from amazon.com.  It will be here Wednesday or Thursday.  Before too much time has passed, I will be able to expect such things to be delivered by mini-drone within hours.

Like all senior citizens, I have a good deal invested in the proposition that things were better in the old days.  But not all things.

4 comments:

David Auerbach said...

In the old days the maker's signature would be etched on the bottom and you could take it down to his or her shop for a quick repair.
Or maybe you'd ask the gardener to take care of it, who in turn would ask one of the gardening staff to.
Although perhaps on the other side of the veil of times past you'd be the garden staff.

Robert Paul Wolff said...

If I was lucky.

Jim said...

Professor Wolff –

It will be interesting to find out if indeed the replacement watering can is the same as, or, better yet, is the same quality as, her previous watering can. I can safely say that one thing I have learned in the past half century is that it is no longer possible to find an exact replacement of an item you have lost. The tendency towards planned obsolescence has been a particularly frustrating trend in recent years. A year or two ago I was walking through a mall when I noticed a sign that proclaimed the following: “Buy this item now – it may not be available tomorrow.” Based on experience, this sales pitch immediately struck me as not simply true but as sound advice. I am genuinely interested as to how Susie will perceive of the new can. Please keep us posted.

-- Jim

Robert Paul Wolff said...

Indeed I shall. Of course, in the world of the future, I will perhaps simply run off another one on a 3D printer!