1) Cottage industries (garage-based welding shops, repair shops, cabinetmaking operations, etc.) have been almost completely zoned out of residential neighborhoods because people don’t want the noise and traffic of commerce. But it occurred to me that our “quiet, non-industrial” residential neighborhoods nowadays are filled with the noise and fumes of leafblowers, weed-whackers, ride-on mowers, and landscaping company trucks! The noise level in our quiet neighborhoods has become rather deafening.
2) Until fairly recently in U.S. history, a large percentage of us were farmers, or somehow employed in agriculture. But farming as an occupation came to be seen as laborious drudgery. So we fled the farm for the cubicle. But it occurred to me that we are still farmers! Only difference is, we no longer grow food or wildlife habitat. We are farmers of vanity landscaping, chained to the lawn-treadmill. Oh, and actual food-growing agriculture has been zoned out of most residential neighborhoods. <Cue the theme song to “Green Acres” here.>
Just a couple of unintended ironies that crossed my mind recently. One lesson I see here is that taking some action purely to get rid of or get away from something often produces just a slightly different-flavored version of the situation we had labeled undesirable.
How about you, what would you add to this list?