Whittle while you work
by Alex Van Ommen
Until somewhere in the beginning of the 21st century, a question about a fact could spark a discussion with passionate camps. It could have been anything from whether or not a particular film came out in 1991 or 1992 to Harry S. Truman's middle name. Everyone brought their own good sense to the table and would duke it out rhetorically, sometimes leaving the most adamantly supported (but not always correct) viewpoint to prevail.
This was also the time when we still learned how to use a card catalog in the school library, probably had an encyclopedia set gracing the bookshelves of the family library, and when everyone used rotary phones and the phone book to make a call and understood the relationship between a pencil and a cassette tape. Finding information was a manual, labor intensive task, whether it was browsing the stacks or twisting your way to the beginning of that bootleg Aerosmith tape.
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