Saturday, July 6, 2013


When I was a kid we used to sing old songs from the 1800s with my grandpa. One of them was, "Around Her Neck She Wore a Yellow Ribbon."

I recently searched for that song online and found several different versions of the lyrics, but the point of the song as I remember it was that "she" (whoever that may have been) wore the ribbon in remembrance of her lover who was "far, far away" fighting in a war.

Today few people remember that song, but it has had a huge impact on our culture.

People use ribbons or, more often pictures of them, to represent all sorts of remembrances and causes. Yellow ones still symbolize people who are deployed in the armed services, pink ribbons are used for awareness of breast cancer, and many ribbons of various colors show concern about various other illnesses and conditions.

I have no idea who wrote the lyrics to that original song, but I'll bet whoever it was had no idea what an influence he or she would have on our culture a century or more in the future.

And that makes me wonder if some seemingly insignificant thing one of us might do, say, or write today might make a big difference in the future, hopefully in a good way.

We'll probably never know.

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