We tend to glorify good memories and bury painful ones. Which is why we constantly refer to “the good old days”. You know those days long ago when life was so much better than it is today. Poppycock. At no time in my life did I not hope to climb higher mountains tomorrow.
Remembering the good and burying the bad is our way of salving pain. Take my gilded view of stereo’s “good old days” when dealers were plentiful, knowledgeable, and selective of only the finest brands. Pulling out some of the old magazines of that era I am reminded of what it was actually like. A confusing jumble to wade through for trustworthy answers.
Take for example an ad in the March 1991 issue of Stereophile offering 39 brands of “hand-selected” cables, or another dealer claiming that “by the year 2000 everything else will have come and gone—but your Tice Power Block will still be there” (last time I checked on my Power Block…). Or, how about a speaker company claiming their boxes produce “Reflection-free sound”.
I think it might have been harder back then to navigate through the wild claims, but that’s what we had discriminating dealers for. Right? I took the time to average the number of brands represented as “good enough to be included in our store” and that number surprised me. 50. 50 brands of stereo equipment and some dealers had more than 70.
If you ask me, we live in a golden age where anything we want is available at the snap of a finger or the press of a button. Including advice and guidance.
I’d say right now is as good as it’s ever been and likely better.