Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Mr Know-It-All

My paternal grandfather did a lot to make his mark around town. In addition to being a crack math teacher and beloved superintendent of the local school he just did everything. He was a master vegetable gardener, an athlete well into his eighties, contributed to nearly everything going on around him in some way or another and read voraciously, constantly.

He, and others, sometimes referred to a time not so long ago when a person really could know it all. The body of knowledge possessed by the human race has only in the last couple hundred years gotten so large that being fluent in all areas of study has become an impossibility. Once upon a time you really could be a know-it-all.

My grandfather was now and then referred to as "the worst kind of know-it-all... he really does know it all!" Not that it was true, but he had an uncanny ability to put forth some sort of factoid about nearly anything at all you wanted to discuss. I pride myself in following in his footsteps to some small degree. Although my friends are a lot younger than his friends were so they in comparison obviously don't know as much.

But it brings me around to my point, and that is: You really should be a know-it-all.

There's something eminently desirable about being a Renaissance Man. A guy who knows about classical art and how to gap a spark plug. A person who grasps the subtleties of timeless musical works, and knows how to get your computer going again after a crash. Someone with an inkling about French cuisine, who also knows how to cook a rockin' good beer brat. You get the idea.

I'm off to read some more...

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1 comment:

  1. no, *i'm* the worst kind of know-it-all.


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