Education no guarantee of understanding the world around us

Published 4:38 pm Friday, August 23, 2019


Contributing Columnist

When I graduated high school several years ago, I had no interest in continuing my education. Even though I enjoyed my time in school, I wanted to get a job and start a family as quick as possible. As a result, I spent my youth earning a living with the strength of my back and the use of my hands. As I grew older, it seemed that getting a formal education was taunting me. The more I tried to avoid it, the more I saw opportunities close their door in my face. Now, several advanced degrees later, I am grateful for the opportunities that have been opened up to me. Still, I find that no matter the amount of education that I receive — there are some things that I cannot understand. One of which is modern art. I don’t understand how a bunch of paint thrown on a canvas passes for genius. If this is the standard for excellence, then I became a painting genius myself while in kindergarten. I don’t recall anyone putting my painting in a gallery and everyone gathering around staring at it, trying to figure out what I was feeling when I painted it. I can tell you that I was most likely feeling anguish because I didn’t have the talent to paint. Another thing that baffles me is the idea of bitcoins. I don’t understand how this works. This seems like something that someone made up and people trade real money for this imaginary money. In my mind, bitcoins are the same as an old video game, like Mario jumping around trying to get as many coins as possible, and the more coins I can digitally collect the better off I am. Of course, social media affects all our lives in one way or another. I am often perplexed when someone sends me a friend request on Facebook, and I think to myself, “Didn’t I just see this person last week at Kroger and they didn’t even speak to me?” Has the standard of friendship changed? If someone were not willing to stop and say hello in person, why would they want to keep up with my life on social media? With the onset of cell phones in our society, it seems that we are now able to contact people or be contacted at any time. One thing I don’t understand from this is people that talk on the phone while in the restroom. Is it mandatory that we answer the phone just because it’s ringing? Some say that it is rude to not answer when someone is trying to get ahold of you. Let me make it clear, in that if I ever call you and you’re in the middle of doing your business, it is perfectly fine to not answer the phone. I may want to talk but I assure you that I do not want to hear anything that occurs while you’re on the porcelain throne. One huge thing that I have never understood is fantasy sports. I have a hard time as it is getting excited watching actual people play an actual game with an actual ball. However, what I don’t understand is getting excited about games that make up teams that don’t actually exist and play a game that is not real. If this is something that people enjoy, then I have some bad news for them about the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus, they don’t actually exist either.

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Jack Godbey is a resident of Danville and a published author.