I am not a terribly smart person. I was a rather average student and I have a tendency to not bother to even attempt to learn something unless either a)I think it will came in handy later or b) I actually wish to know it.
Of course I have vastly different measures of both a and b now then I did back when I was fourteen or even twenty-two. What this means is that there are hundreds, no wait, thousands of things that I didn’t care enough about or deem important enough to bother with learning when I had the chance.
And now that I am older, wiser, and have the luxury of looking back in time a bit, I realize how much of my potential education I squandered.
Not just my education…. My potential education.
The idea that youth is wasted on the young isn’t new… but my appreciation for the truth in the adage is.
Which is why I am picky.
I am picky when it comes to what I read (books, blogs, news, etc). I am picky when it comes to what I watch on TV (or the net version of TV called Hulu). I am picky when it comes to who I have intellectually stimulating conversations with. I am picky when it comes to how I use my time.
Because there is always this faint echo in the back of my head that is asking me if this is really the best use of my time, my energy, my failing eyesight, my internet bandwidth, my energy….
Don’t get me wrong. It isn’t like I think that people need to forgo all fun and fluffy type actions and only concentrate on the hard, the disciplined, the productive and self improvement activities.
I think there are benefits to entertainment. There is relaxation, there is escapism, there is the building of shared cultural context,… and these things are essential (at least for me) to obtain happiness.
And I am also not deluded enough to think that just because I happen to feel that TV Show A is worthy of my time but anything written by Author X is insipid tripe and should be avoided at all costs, that I have any claim at being RIGHT or that what works for me will work for everyone else. The converse is inherently true as well.
Keep all that in mind if you chose to continue to read my blog. Or any blog entry I have written or may write about books, movies, music, art, sports, pastimes, education….
I might be a literary snob and a snotty sycophant who is in love with pseudo intellectualism and the not quite dead idea of deconstruction… but at least I am self aware and make no claims to genius.