To Know What We Didn’t Before

Boy, am I glad that human society has allowed us to do specialization. Because the more I learn about my subjects of choice, the more layers there are within them to go down.

My interests are things like economics, sociology, media, and art. And the more I discover about any one of those topics, the more I learn of the people who specialize in them—the people dealing with stuff like this for the longest time.

There are whole schools of thought I was unaware of until now. Terms and concepts and discussions are going on in places I simply don’t know about or have not had the chance to see.

I don’t regret not going to college—I’m proud of being a professional, self-taught writer—but I think that’s the big thing I missed. I was not exposed to the random, the esoteric, the established avenues of academia and the evergreen curriculum that might have made me aware of things like “opportunity costs” and the French New Wave much sooner than I was.

Not to say it hasn’t been fun this way, too. Sometimes it feels like I stumble onto fun facts; gold laid out for me. Random blobs of information sitting, name-dropped (so to speak) in videos and books, ready to send me on a new path.

And that’s cool. I just wish there was a way to know what we do not know. I don’t mean omniscience, though that would be best: just a place with interests laid out by my ignorance. An index with the names of the topics I do not yet know, labeled, color-coded, and organized by what I would most enjoy knowing next.

Special thanks to: Melissa Potter

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