Flags and Creativity?

Cover of Newsweek magazine July 19, 2010

Nice Flag

The cover story of the July 19, 2010 edition of Newsweek, entitled The Creativity Crisis, had me riveted all week thinking about the premise that, “American creativity scores are falling.” Of course we couldn’t help but notice that the image used (at left) to visualize the subject matter was a flag. (Yes, that’s just about all we think about.)

So it was refreshing to see that, among the many hand-made presents one of my granddaughters made for my birthday last Saturday, were the following:

Emma's four flags

US, Colorado, Ireland (yes), Hawaii

The back of one of Emma's flags

The back of one of Emma's flags, showing the duct tape and flex-straw.

Often it’s best not to ask too many questions of a 7-year old, but rather simply stand in awe of what they can do if we get out of their way. Why she chose those particular flags? Why Ireland’s stripes are horizontal rather than vertical? These are but details in the grander scheme of wanting to create something for her grandpa.

And perhaps it was no coincidence that the Spanish “word for the day” at the Mexican restaurant that evening was popote.

All of this takes nothing away from the creativity of my adult friends, as evidenced by this beautifully woven sachet-like “bouquet” of lavender.

Bev's Lavender

Bev's Lavender

So, a decline in American creativity? Well that’s what the science is telling us: too much Internet and gaming makes us a little smarter, but also a little less creative. Maybe. But I’m not seeing it in my circles. Family and friends. That’s what it’s all about.

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