What’s the Matter with People Today?

I leave home, and I run right into trouble. The flights are on time. The rental car is brand-new. The hotel desk clerk takes one look at my grumpy face and hands over a chocolate chip cookie so impossibly fresh out of the oven that I wordlessly surrender my driver’s license and Visa to her, and I don’t really care what happens to either so long as they KEEP THE COOKIES COMING.

I go to the show, enduring a scenic drive with little traffic, and fall into some kind of ridiculous happy land. There’s no fee for parking. There’s no fee for admission. People greet me like a local and say, “Great day, isn’t it?” What’s that about?

It’s early on a Friday, but people movers are circulating. One bears the banner of a neighboring tractor club, and okay, I’m not afraid to name names. It was the Olympic Peninsula club – but it was NOT THEIR SHOW! Aware that their neighbors, EDGE&TA Branch 245, were having a big show, they did some kind of neighborly thing and loaned a people mover.

What is the matter with people today?!?

For a day and a half, I visit with collectors. Most are barely old enough to have considered the merit of retirement savings. They are totally jazzed about old iron. They are deeply interested in the history of manufacturers and industrial design. They gush about the particular features they like.

I ask you, what is the matter with people today?!?

I get back in the office and review articles for this issue of Farm Collector. A high school kid conducts a by-the-book restoration of his great-grandfather’s cultivator, just to preserve a family heirloom. A young man with a family carves out time to stay engaged in antique engines, a passion passed down to him by a granddad who left his mark by sharing his time.

I beg of you! Please, tell me, what is the matter with people today?!?

We hear a lot of bad news these days. We run into a lot of negativity. Maybe we get what we look for; maybe there’s more good around us than we’re willing to accept. Go ahead; give it a test drive. Renew your faith in humanity right here, right now, in this issue of Farm Collector!

Leslie C. McManus is the senior editor of Farm Collector. Contact her at LMcManus@ogdenpubs.com.

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