Context, and you can’t have the same party twice
In reading history and Richard Dawkins’s Climbing Mount Improbable and various other things, and I got to thinking about how brief are periods that loom large to us because they have become iconic and thus frequently appear in—or are the basis of—many movies, novels, stories, fashions, and the like. I came upon the thought again in watching Captain America: The First Avenger. The movie quickly exploited all the familiar apparatus of the Allied view of WWII European Theater in 1943-44. Familiar stuff—Band of Brothers, Bill Maudliin cartoons, and so much more. But look how short the time period was: two years. It was a unique time, it will not be repeated, and it didn’t last all that long.
The famed Pony Express—fast mail between Sacramento CA and St. Joseph MO—lasted from April 3, 1860 to October 1861: 19 months. The Wild West itself didn’t last long overall, and in any individual town was of short duration.