Last weekend I was driving through Tiverton, Rhode Island with my FHB, on our way to one of our semi-favorite places for lunch. It is nostalgic more than delicious at this point, since it was where I was wooed, many years ago while on Date #2, shortly after Date #1, which had occurred a few hours earlier, when we had coffee and our first meeting. You can presume, we fast tracked this relationship at that point and things continue to be going along well. Thanks for asking. In any case, one of the things I noticed as we drove through this very bucolic and sleepy town which sits along the Sakonnet River, is the number of enormous pleasure boats that were in dry dock, all shrinked wrapped for winter. I thought to myself “self, why didn’t you think of that? It’s brilliant, efficient, albeit, not pretty, but functional”.
I have tremendous admiration for folks that invent things. Beyond the invention itself, is having the wherewithal (and yes, that is how it is spelled…another word that we say but don’t write and looks funny, but I digress) to bring things to fruition. Thomas Edison was absolutely right on when he talked about genius being one percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration. Often, in conversations with my FHB, we discuss different concepts/ideas of items or solutions to common needs or problems. One day, he talked about the frustration of walking around a cemetary (not the actual walking part) and not remembering how to find your deceased loved ones or other relatives because unless you are up close to a gravestone, many of them look the same. Rows and rows of graves and there is something often disconcerting about not being able to zero in on finding the one you are looking for. He postulated that it might be a app that people could have on their phones via GPS and all the different cemetaries could post updates and schematics that would lead you to your special someone. We talked at length about it. We even have a daughter-in-law that is a software engineer but never took it to the next level and even brought it up as a something that we could get her thoughts on. In the meantime, there is probably something already out there that meets that need. That’s the perspiration part. Does that make us not geniuses?
When I was a teenager, I would have many ideas of things to make life easier. I thought of a stereo record player that you could set up that would automatically play the song I wanted to hear without getting up and changing the 33, 45, or 78. Those of you who have been around a while, know what those “codes” mean. And for others who don’t, just google it. Of course, I was probably imagining a remote control device or a jukebox so that I could just be a bit lazy and not have to do the manual labor of switching the record. Imagine my surprise when I found out someone had stolen several of my ideas. And yet, when I found out that it was already an invention, I got over myself, and thought of how smart I was, just not on time to have figured it out.
I am not much for physical exercise but give me some time to exercise my brain and ideas, and I am there, using a lot of free time, driving, riding in an elevator, taking out the trash, before I fall asleep, and while I am in the shower. I keep a pad of paper next to my bed, and I have lists of reminders in my phone under notes and reminders, which sometimes is a bad idea, because I can’t remember where I keep which and also which is a note and which is a reminder. I am working on being more efficient. Sometimes I get the sense that I am close to an invention and I try and hold on to that thought so I can discuss it with my FHB at the dinner table. Those are the ones, I never write down or remember in a timely fashion. I always think I have an answer to the question “what’s new?” but then I don’t.
I guess it’s back to the drawing board or the tablet. I wish I thought of that one, for sure.