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Oldies vs Youngsters – World Issues

Updated: Jan 3, 2021

It’s Raining in Moscow and I Forgot my Umbrella focusses on the connection between the generations. This blog explore that connection.

Does the enthusiasm of the Youngsters stand a chance against the wisdom of the Oldies?

The score so far: Oldies 3 – 3 Youngsters

Each team will present world issues which they believe to belong to their own generation.

Youngsters’ first proposal: Performance enhancing drugs.

X Sorry youngsters! The ancient Greeks were using performance enhancing drugs as long ago as 776 BC during the original Olympic Games. In fact the word ‘doping’ comes from a Dutch word ‘doop’, a viscous opium juice used by ancient Greek athletes to improve their physical ability.

Oldies’ first proposal: Renewable energy.

X I’m afraid not Oldies! Waterwheels date back to 200 BC. They were first used in Europe and were the first step towards hydropower by converting the energy of moving water into electrical energy. Windmills date back to 635 AD where, in Middle Asia they were horizontal (they looked a bit like revolving doors), and the vertical versions were all over the Netherlands by the late 1500s.

Even solar energy is quite old – older than the Oldies! It was first used in France in 1860 when Augustin Mouchot invented a ‘sun meter’ because he feared coal supply would run out one day – way ahead of his time!

Incidentally, fuels that can’t be reused have been around for over 4000 years, when coal was already being used in China for heating and cooking. In 200 BC the Chinese were using natural gas to make salt from brine in gas-fired evaporators using bamboo pipes!

Youngsters’ second proposal: The use of Marijuana as a healing product.

X Wrong again! Back to China where in 2900 BC the Chinese emperor Fu Hsi made a reference to Ma, the Chinese word for Cannabis, noting that Cannabis was very popular medicine that possessed both yin and yang.

Oldies’ second proposal: Dementia is a relatively new condition.

X Not even close! Pythagoras was a Greek physician of the 7th century B.C. He said there were lots of stages in the human life-cycle, the last two were old age. He stated that old age was identified by the regression of the human mental abilities.

Hippocrates, the “father of medicine” lived between the 3rd and 4th century B.C. He also spoke about the deterioration of the mind due to old age and labelled it as “paranoia”.

Plato and his student Aristotle, Greek philosophers from around 350BC thought of mental and cognitive decline as an unavoidable consequence of age.

So no points for this round. The score remains at 3-3


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