Friday, September 23, 2005


Bah. This is what happens when too much happens at once: you forget to just sit down and collect your thoughts. Apologies for the lack of updates, for the random people that pass by, and all 15 of you people who have such a lack of life that you subscribe to the blog. Yay RSS feeds.

Stupid Intellectuals

A thing I've noticed in the past bunch of years is that it's become less and less cool to be smart. I was talking with a cousin's daughter, currently enrolled as a junior in Andover, and she's told stories of smart girls who dumb themselves down to not be shunned by the rest of their school. Now, for little old me, not only is this the highest on my "wtf" list, but it's also very unnerving: the next generation is being told that it's not good to be smart.

Now, not to sound like a soccer momm-ey, but I blame the media. Kinda. Our society forces people to give us what we want in order to make money, and T.V. is doing just that. After Survivor came out, the people clamored for more reality shows, and that's what the network gave them. Then they wanted worse, and T.V. obliged. It's a vicious circle -- we seem to always want stupid shows, which in turn render us a tad more stupid, making us want to watch stupider shows, which render us more stupid, etc, until we wind up with the IQ of a monkey. Or a celebrity. Same thing.

Which brings me to question number two: Why do we want stupid stuff on T.V? And why just us? If you, again, take a hop over the pond, you'll find the BBC with new documentaries every week and views that challenge pretty much everything, and while there is the odd soap opera, there's nothing compared to the monstrosity of our 100 channels of idiocy. My little hypothesis is that we like to see people that are worse off than us, because it makes us feel better. We like seeing the stupid rich white girls get blasted at a party, because we think that we're better. Unfortunately, there are only so many hours in a day, and when we demand so much of things that are worse than us, there is less time for the actual intelligent stuff. The smart stuff gets pushed to less prime times, until the only thing better than desperate housewives is a documentary on the Survivor series at 2:30 in the morning.

Closing that parenthesis, I wander back to my original point: It is no longer a good thing to be smart. Not geeky smart, that's always been bad in high school, but just book smart. Using polysyllabic words. Reading to pass the time instead of watching TV. I, for one, am quite disturbed by this stupid intellectualism, and hope that it can be changed around soon.


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