Monday, April 20, 2009

i'm getting my phd in creepy...

I was always incredibly bored in school and I attributed my boredom to my genius. I'm discovering that may have not been the case. I think maybe I was bored because I was lazy.
Don't get me wrong. I'm still lazy. I just wish I could go back to school because it's full of people who love to provide answers to questions, the very questions I'm dying to know the answers to now.
But I can't afford to get my Masters in something ridiculous just because I suddenly got curious. Which is why I spend an appalling amount of time putting my brain eggs in the Wikipedia basket.
I find myself jotting down thoughts to research when I get home. Like Niagara Falls. Someone was just talking about Niagara Falls. And while I was pretending to listen to what they were saying, I was really wondering why people no longer threw themselves off Niagara Falls in barrels.
Now I know.
I watched Munich again. I'm embarrassed to admit, I don't really get Israel. Palestine? Israel? Modern State? I made the mistake of asking my father. Actually, I didn't ask. I announced, "I don't get Israel" on the way back from Easter Mass.
"What do you mean you don't 'get' Israel?"
"I mean, the country. What's the story?"
"Jeez. Relax. I'm going to wikipedia it."
"That's absolutely unacceptable. You are an educated person, Beth."
"I guess I zoned out that day. I bet a lot of people don't get it. They're just afraid to ask so they spend the rest of their lives being stupid. I finally ask and I'm the idiot. I think you look a lot more stupid pretending you know the answer than admitting you don't. You know what happens to those people. They die in preventable tragedy."
"You can't go to wikipedia."
"Why not?"
"You need to read a 500 page book on it." I don't know about my father's logic on that one. Apparently, you can't intelligently understand a subject in less than 500 pages.
"500 pages? Forget it. I just want the jist."
"The jist? You want the jist of Israel?"
Guess what I found on Wikipedia? The jist of Israel.
I realize that Wikipedia is certainly error-packed, but I know a thing or two abut us internet people. We take shit really seriously and anonymously from our mother's basement PCs. It is, after all, the internet. Recently, I looked up Anita Bryant, who's wikipdia biography read "Anita Jane Bryant (born March 25, 1940, in Barnsdall, Oklahoma) is an American singer and a cunt."
Now, even though that last part is very, very true, someone's already swooped in and edited the sass right out of that biography. There's a nerd for every subject out there, folks. A whole bunch of nerds. And for my needs, wikipedia works. It's certainly a lot cheaper than wondering if I can pull an Elle Woods and go to grad school at Harvard. Something tells me "I don't get Israel" wouldn't fly over there.
So long those lines and because I have faith in nerds, here's what I've recently been checking out on Wikipedia, my own personal learning annex:
Did you know Rufus Wainwright was raped when he was 14? Me neither.
A friend of mine is a volunteer bringing food to invalids, one of whom is a compulsive hoarder and requests only one food item: Cheez-Its. While you're checking out hoarders, enjoy the Collyer Brothers!
Pick a day, any day. How about today? Forget the weed stuff. That's old news. And we all already knew it's Hitler's birthday, right? But I had no idea today is the second anniversary of the Johnson Space Center Shooting. Now, you could just read all about his tragic event, or you could click forward on the word suicide. And then there goes your day. You've got self-immolation, seppuku and of course, the list of famous suicides.
I've also ben craving Macadamia nuts. They kill dogs, by the way.
Ain't it fun to learn?
So the lesson for today is that wikipedia is way better than wandering around for the rest of your life not really sure of the difference between VJ Day and VE Day. Duh. I can't believe I never knew that yet always wondered. Problem solved...


LB said...

This site is no wiki but...

KG said...

You know what I love on Wiki's? THE DISCUSSION PAGES!

I love to read people actively fighting about if it is a *fact* that Zelda the video game was named for Zelda Fitzgerald, as if this question and it's needed clarification is the most important part of the poor dismal life of ZF.

Oh btw, the ZF wiki is great!

Be_Devine said...

Leubitz has taken to Wikipediaing musicians while we're watching them perform live. It's kinda annoying, but then after the show, he can regale us with things like "Did you know that M.I.A.'s dad is a Tamil Tiger and she just had a kid with a Bronfman heir?"

Melissa said...

You are an endless supply of fascinating information - which is just one reason why I love road trips with you.

Someday when I get a wikipedia page, I want you to go on there and post all kinds of lies like, "Melissa goes to the gym" or "Melissa's hair is naturally that color."

Leslie said...

I think you and I have the same disease where we can't stop consuming media. It makes me a walking trivial pursuit game if trivial pursuit made an edition about science, murder and mayhem.

Wikipedia can steal hours of your life. Here are some things that I've spent days pouring over: Freemasons, Jonestown, Branch Dividians, Salman Rushdie, the west memphis 3, stigmata, Queen Elizabeth II, and so many others. I've already read the one about self-immoliation and unusual suicides.

Once in a drunken outburst when I lived in Chicago I screamed at a cab driver who claimed to be from Palestine that no he wasn't and there was no such place. Didn't go over well. Too soon, I think.