The other day I came across a radio documentary about a French luggage museum (much less banal-sounding in French: “Musée du Bagage”). The reporter made a big deal of the large travel and sea chests which were in use a hundred years ago, pointing out that traveling with thirty pairs of shoes was no rarity in the year 1900. He continued to describe how a class of professional porters back then was operating in the streets to cart these huge chests between train stations, hotels, and other destinations. Then he said that this profession had by now disappeared since today we travel lightly, with baggage we lug around ourselves. He went to the trouble of adding yet another justification for the huge, heavy chests of the past: namely that, back in 1900, the ladies were changing their clothes six times a day.
That’s the moment where I couldn’t contain myself any longer and uttered a comment about how our “journalists” of today keep turning a blind eye to the kleptocratic rich folks who run our often sad lives and the huge inequality in our society which we have inherited from those past times he was reporting on. Did he truly not realize that he was comparing apples and oranges?