Two great dissections of life
To snob, or not to snob?
Snobbery is so prevalent, we rarely even call it by its name anymore. But, Alain de Botton, gets right down to its core in his excellent TED talk. He plainly states,
“What is a snob? A snob is anybody who takes a small part of you and uses that to come to a complete vision of who you are. That is snobbery.
And the dominant kind of snobbery that exists nowadays is job snobbery. You encounter it within minutes at a party, when you get asked that famous iconic question of the early 21st century, “What do you do?” And according to how you answer that question, people are either incredibly delighted to see you, or look at their watch and make their excuses.
Now, to opposite of a snob is your mother. Not necessarily your mother, or indeed mine. But, as it were, the ideal mother. Somebody who doesn’t care about your achievements. But unfortunately, most people are not our mothers."
Do fish know what water is?
And the now deceased writer and thinker, David Foster Wallace, wrote this fantastic pice on living life day in and day out.
“There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, “Morning, boys, how’s the water?” And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes, “What the hell is water?”
If at this moment, you’re worried that I plan to present myself here as the wise old fish explaining what water is to you younger fish, please don’t be. I am not the wise old fish. The immediate point of the fish story is that the most obvious, ubiquitous, important realities are often the ones that are the hardest to see and talk about. Stated as an English sentence, of course, this is just a banal platitude — but the fact is that, in the day-to-day trenches of adult existence, banal platitudes can have life-or-death importance. That may sound like hyperbole, or abstract nonsense."