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Stories of Atlanta

It had everything to do with necessity

Necessity is the “Mother of Invention.” Not much to argue with there. If it weren’t for necessity, there would never have been a MacGyver. The crew of Apollo 13 could probably tell you a thing or two about the motivation provided by necessity. And we’re pretty sure that if it weren’t for necessity, Ron Popeil might never have invented the Pocket Fisherman, the Veg-O-Matic or the phrase “set it and forget it.”

It is, therefore, not surprising that some of the most fertile ground for invention has come during wartime. If ever there was a time of necessity, war must surely be that time. And with apologies to Edwin Starr, it turns out that war actually is good for something.

The list of inventions that came out of wartime is impressive to say the least: canned food, soy sausages, the ball point pen, microwave ovens, instant coffee, superglue, the internet and the Twinkie are some that can trace their origins to a wartime necessity.

But it isn’t just inventions that the necessity of war spawned. Music, graphic design, fashion, language and our very way of life have been greatly influenced over the years by a necessity that arose during wartime. If you doubt this, consider for a moment that twice a year almost everyone in the United States participates in a practice that directly came from a World War One necessity. A necessity that is illustrated in this week’s Stories of Atlanta.

Lance Russell

Lance Russell is an Atlanta-based filmmaker and media communicator who, for over three decades, has been entrusted by clients to tell their stories. A seasoned producer with an innate ability to cut to the heart of the matter, Lance’s instincts are tailor-made for today’s “media bite” culture. Brief, poignant and always entertaining, Lance’s current passion is bringing Atlanta’s colorful and inspiring past to life with his “rest of the story” style video series, Stories of Atlanta. “History’s best communicators,” says Lance, “have always been storytellers. It’s in our DNA. ‘Once upon a time’ is how we got to where we are now.”


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