When I was 10 years old, I had already gained the reputation of inventor. My mother’s boyfriend at the time was a pretty smart guy. He’s the one that told me I could be wasting a lot of time on perpetual motion machines. I guess I was still young enough to heed good advice. I moved on to the next machine.
I presented my mentor with my latest design, bouncing with anticipation of what he might say next. He told me it was a very good design; and that it just might work as well.
“But there’s only one problem I can see,” he said with a developing smirk. “Unfortunately, this has already been invented. It’s called a steam engine.”
This moment in childhood is my first memory, in a discontinuous stream of thoughts since, of not ever having said or written or seen anything that had not already be said, thought, or done before. The event horizon of the slowest growing humility – replete with the pain of ego deflation.
What has been will be again,
what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun.