Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.
It’s Tuesday, and this post is not unlike an episode of Hoarders because I’m trying to stuff in lot of information. Then again, I’ve never watched an episode of Hoarders.
Yesterday, I mentioned that I’m trying to read a lot, and that I’m listening to podcasts. I’m also endeavoring to keep up with news via social media, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and a series of emails.
If that sounds like a lot, well it is. I’m just trying to be informed because being informed makes me a better writer.
And by the way, no, I don’t watch regular television. But I am currently binge watching my way through The Simpsons. I’m somewhere in Season 9.
Terry Pratchett wrote in The Shepherd’s Crown…”Reading is the way up. Knowledge is the key to everything.”
Of course that just reminds me that I’ve already said I need to read more Terry Pratchett.
Stephen King said, “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”
Of course he’s right.
The problem is, when there is so much information available, so much to read, how do we sort out what we consume?
At some point last year, I made the determination that my reading for 2021 would be focused on British history and British literature. I’m not sure what prompted that other than the knowledge that I don’t know enough about either. I think I got the idea in my re-reading of either The Lord of the Rings or The Chronicles of Narnia.
I’ve had on my bucket list for a while reading the Complete Works of Shakespeare, but that is not casual
So, one of the podcasts that I’m currently listening to as I take my daily walk is Chopped Bard which is walking us through the Shakespeare Plays. I’m behind by about 10 years, so I have time to catch up. But, as we work our way through each play I plan to pull out the text and read, or re-read the actual play. I will not finish this task in 2021.
It’s also important to keep up with current events. The problem there is also sorting through what to consume.
For example, I did not watch Oprah’s interview with the Sussexes even though that would fit in with my current literary themes. I mean, at least he’s British. Or he was.
But closer to home, it’s hard to get honest news.
I mean, I know some of y’all can’t stand Donald Trump, but the man knew how to make news. And he knew how to manipulate the news cycle.
But consider that Sara Fischer and Neal Rothschild write at Axios that “Nearly every big news site saw its traffic decline in February.”
Why? They weren’t writing about Donald Trump.
True, the current President isn’t giving them as much information. As of this writing, he has yet to hold his first press conference. That’s pretty much unheard of in the last 100 years.
And let’s not gloss over the fact that just last week, when the President offered to take questions after making a statement, the White House cut the news feed.
Read into that what you will
All of this with the media fawning over the President and telling us what a wonderful job he’s done with the vaccine rollout and COVID relief.
Let’s be clear. We would be nowhere near where we are with the vaccines without the prior work of the Trump Administration.
And even Ilhan Omar admits that Trump did a better job of getting funds to the people.
At least we don’t have any more mean tweets.
As I’m writing this, news comes that President Biden will have his first address to the nation on Thursday night to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the COVID shutdown.
But back to my point…there’s just so much information out there that we have to decide 1) what to consume and 2) what to do with it once we’ve consumed it.
I haven’t quite figured that out yet.
I mean this research should make me a better writer.
But I’ll have to think about that tomorrow, Scarlet.
I have books to read.
American composer of music for hymns Phoebe Knapp was born on this day in 1839 (died 1908). Perhaps her best known work is “Assurance” for Fanny Crosby’s Blessed Assurance lyrics.
RANDOM LINKS OF INTEREST
National Hurricane Center may move up the start of hurricane season
Sunday Firesides: Every Man Needs His Own Walden(s)
The Art of Manliness
And then they came for ON BEYOND ZEBRA!
John McWhorter at It Bears Mentioning
Growing My Faith in the Face of Death
Tim Keller in The Atlantic
WHAT I’M READING
PODCASTS I’M LISTENING TO