If you ask, say a 1000 people what the five most important inventions in the 20th century are, many would select airplanes in their top 5. I would wager that it’ll be number one for a lot of people, but I am not a betting man. The airplane is interesting in every single possible way you can imagine because of its history, the after effects of its invention and how it has changed literally everything. I am particularly fascinated by its history and I shall tell you why.
Since the age of the first men, one thought that continued to dazzle men and women alike was the will to fly. Since that time, efforts were made in virtually every part of the world to make man airborne, like the birds. Da Vinci painted drafts of the early prototypes of “aircraft” and gliders then designed a man powered craft in his “Codex on the flight of birds“. Sir Hiram Maxim and a lot of others made similar machines but failed to complete the task at hand.
In later centuries, so many high profile failures took place which prompted many to finally give up on that dream. In fact, the Detroit Free Press on January 5th, 1889, to paraphrase concluded that “Nature has reached this limit, and with her utmost effort has failed to pass it“. It was joined by many notable scientists, politicians and leaders in the bashing of the realisation of a dream that had been with man for thousands of years. This meant an end to all hopes and thoughts about flying, as well as the relegation of folklore, stories and legends from every conceivable reality about flying to mere stories. However, two brothers were not deterred as they devoted time and energy into ensuring that man could indeed fly across the face of the heavens.
When I was asked to do this, I wondered what I would talk about. Certainly, 2019 was a bit of a mixed bag but what year wasn’t? I have been able to learn, unlearn and relearn themes, ideas and other things this year. That, to me is certainly progress and slowly, I am closer to the immediate goals I have.
I want to keep this very short before you find me out as a con man or an ersatz Fela Durotoye (aspire to perspire to refire and other stories), I want you to focus on my opening story: you are a project that is as important as the airplane (at least to yourself and your loved ones). Dedicate each moment to tighten a bolt, do all necessary things, relax, learn and see each journey to the end. Like the Wright Brothers, we are waiting on you. See you at launch!
Season’s Greetings from Perry’s Tots.
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