Posted by: Kirsten | Friday, 18 January 2008

Six Degrees of Sir Francis Bacon

Wow.  I just had one of those days where I communicated with so many people in so many places, it’s mind-boggling.

This morning I got up at 5am and carted my daughter off to a local kids’ museum where she was on the news during the opening of a new exhibit.  So while my daughter’s electrons are being beamed through the air and over the internet and around the world, I’m busy snapping pictures (we homeschoolers photograph everything, right?). Then it’s off to work where I communicate with some military folks in Iraq, England, Alaska, and Texas as part of my job, then it’s home again where I sent my digital pictures out to people in Maryland, California, Kentucky, Arkansas, and Italy.  A package arrives in the snail-mail and I then e-mail a paleontologist in Connecticut (who we’ll meet this summer in North Dakota to dig up 67 million year old bones) so I can get his home address so I can send him a t-shirt I had designed on the internet only a few days ago that was printed in Virginia and mailed across the Potomac to me.  Meanwhile the usual barrage of e-mails from various homeschool groups come streaming in every 15 minutes or so from all 50 states and during dinner my wife reads to us the story of our friends’ first few days in Italy as they recently moved to a military base there.  This evening I sent some more e-mails back and forth with California about ancestry.com research, found some more information on our family tree that led back to a branch originally from Germany in the early 1700s (which is now part of the Netherlands).

Whew! I feel like my brainwaves have been scattered to the four corners of the globe and back hundreds and perhaps millions of years — all just today.  And isn’t it amazing that we all have this ability to communicate and research and discover just about anything we want in no time at all.  We could easily use all that power to just sit in front of the computer all day and all night and continually absorb… absorb… absorb.  The challenge as parents is for us to use that power to inspire our kids to get out there and see it and do it for themselves.  It’s wonderful and terrifying at the same time, isn’t it?

Parke Diem!
— Jon

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