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Generally, I’m all about progress, but sometimes I think we try to “advance” little things that were fine just the way they were. With that being said, there have been loads of advances in technology over the last few decades that have made our lives immeasurably more convenient.

Take the DVD, for example, not only does it have superior sound and video quality, and take up less space, and theoretically last longer, but it’s easy to use! Be honest, did anyone ever REALLY understand how to program the VCR? Really, don’t lie. That was miserable.

Or digital music – no chewed up cassette tapes, no scratched CDs. Music can last forever in the cloud!

Text messaging – now you can unobtrusively ask someone a simple question, and get a quick answer, without it devolving into a 100 hour conversation about who knows what. I mean, I’m happy to hear your dramatic ex boyfriend story – over a drink – but I’m at work right now and I just wanted to know if you could quickly forward me that email we were talking about earlier?

But, there are some advances that are not all that great. Some that are the opposite of convenient. Here it comes: I’m talking specifically about the auto industry’s move away from manually opening gas tank doors. I mean they don’t even make them with the ability for you to quick pop it open with your finger any more – seriously? This may seem small, but isn’t progress supposed to make things BETTER? I bring this up during a time where we have a season called “winter” here in upstate New York. It snows, it’s icy, and it is COLD, I tell you. So if it’s going to be 2 degrees out overnight, like any good north-easterner, I know, I need more than one gallon of gas in my tank to be sure my gas lines don’t freeze and I’m left all sorts of screwed in the morning. Except it’s also cold now. Not freezing rain, not snow, just some standard mid-winter chilly weather. And I’m at the gas station. With a mere gallon in my tank. PULLING ON THE DAMN RELEASE REPEATEDLY! Who has been there? When you kick your car tires and curse the car manufacturers for now making popping the gas tank door a two person job, just because it’s cold.

At least I can quickly text someone to meet me at the gas station to help me open this damn thing up…

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