Thinking About Writers

Writers are so cool. They travel to crazy places. Talk to crazy people. Unearth crazy ideas. Expose crazy activities. And then relay it back to us. When I fantasize about “writers”, I think about the journalists at the New York Times and the contributors at magazines like The Atlantic and The New Yorker. These publications’ stories are so in depth and well investigated that I feel like I am getting a close to complete picture of the subject. Of course, there are the issues of writer bias, errors, the companies own political opinions, etc. But, as a reader, it is my job to know those exist (better yet to know what they are) and to read and think and consider in a discerning manner. What is cool to think about is the experience of the writers as they chase their story.

On a train between Helsinki and Turku. Sitting in the executive office of Air Force 1. Contacting lawyers and school presidents and consulting numerous legal documents and reports about the activities of the many fraternities across America. It is just plain cool. It makes you realize what an art great writing, reporting and thinking is. These people ask wonderful questions, and listen and relay. Writers help us define our world. I think about how few times I write. And how easy it is to take for granted what journalists, essayists and every form of writer does. They make it interesting. They offer us parts of the world we can’t access from our daily routines. But, maybe there is another way to think about that. Writers show us that amid our daily routine, hidden in the cracks of our awareness, are vast pools of interest and oddity. They are there for anybody to find. But so few do find them. So few times, even when they are found do we actually explore them.

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