My Quest to Being an Informed Person

Step 1: Naively Decide I Want to Be Informed

In my head, informed people read newspapers and watch intelligent news shows while eating a balanced breakfast and practicing yoga. Which sounds alright but isn’t why I want to be informed. On an extrinsic level I’m participating in an debate program that makes it necessary. Intrinsically I simply enjoy knowing everything. It’s like being the person with the most secrets. In Pretty Little Liars world I am “A.”

Step 2: Read Shit

I consider buying an actual newspaper but they’re shape is awkward and stupid. Maybe my arms are too short or I’m doing it wrong but I don’t enjoy reading the physical newspaper. I turn to the internet instead; bonus points, it’s free. Start with most popular articles. Question why in the world are the most popular articles so popular while simultaneously realizing how quickly the internet has killed my attention span.

Step 3: Read Shorter Shit

Newspaper articles are long. I quit after the first article that makes me click to another page. Please, get to your point already. A few articles are interesting enough to merit multiple pages, but most aren’t. So I revise my strategy and decide to use Twitter to obtain my desired informed status. No one can be boring in that few characters. Turns out this isn’t true, but Twitter works out a little bit better.

Step 4: Realize I Know Nothing

Gain a false sense of confidence by only following a US newspaper. Add in some international news like Al Jazeera or the Economist. I know nothing! Why are there countries I didn’t know exist? What are all of these strange names? How the heck do foreign people pronounce things?

Step 4: Attempt to Know More Things

Set out to learn the locations of countries. Realize there are 196 of them. Try to make learning more fun and less daunting. Take this Sporcle quiz on countries. Do absolutely awful. Maybe the where isn’t that important anyways. Keep reading news and concentrate on the what.

Step 5: Become Jaded

web cartoon

Often I feel like the woman in this cartoon. The news is all death, economic doom, and Honey Boo Boo.

Step 6: Drown Sorrows

Decide everything will be okay because I have ice cream and a NetFlix subscription. Shut out the nasty world until it gets its act together. Reflect on the true bliss of ignorance. Write a blog post instead of reading more news.

Step 7: Self Deceit

Wait until a new day then hope that news is better. Repeat steps 1-7.

If anyone’s got better strategies on staying informed I’d love to hear them.

Best of Luck,

Caitlin

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