Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Thursday, June 22, 2017

you'll learn one day

 I like to watch jeopardy and guess at the answers. It is good exercise for an aging mind. As I watched last night I got too wondering, Just who is smarter, a person with a PhD in a specific field or the person that can answer questions from all areas ? Well in Jeopardy the answer would have to be the later. That is usually who wins. But I was thinking in more general terms. What I mean is we all admire those with those advanced degrees and think of them as " smart. " But those that have knowledge of a more general nature over a very broad range of subjects we call trivia. We trivialize that knowledge ? Hmm, that doesn't seem fair now does it. If I were stranded on a desert island I sure would rather be with that person. Hey on Gilligans Island they had the Professor. He made a lot of cool things but never figured out how to repair the boat ! Maybe he needed a broader base of knowledge. Just a thought.
 It is much the same in the workforce. The workers that in my estimation are far more talented, or at least possessing numerous skills, are paid less than the expert. And the expert only has to know one area ! That doesn't seem very equitable now does it ? In another strange twist the skilled laborer can become " overqualified " for the job and refused a position. I know about that first hand, it happened to me. I was told due to my age and experience they felt I was overqualified. The thinking was, I would be continuously looking for a better position and therefore they couldn't count on me staying. I understand the logic. Of course from my vantage point I didn't agree, pointing out they would be getting more for their money.
 I tend to think in order to become expert in any one field you have to possess a narrow sense of focus. I mean, the ability to focus so much on one thing that it keeps you fascinated. You see, that's my problem, I have too many interests. I quickly become bored doing the same thing over and over. Once I know how to solve that math problem my curiosity is satisfied. I don't know how you remain fascinated with the same subject for life. Just seems like it would get boring to me. In todays information age this is even more so. I can just type in a query and presto, I have an answer to almost anything I would want to know. So, why should I spend years acquiring specific knowledge about a subject when I can just google it ? All you really need to know is what question to ask.  It is still the ability to perform a task that is valuable. I do think skilled laborers will one day be in high demand. They will be the ones that get paid the highest. Knowing about something and doing it are different actions. You can't learn experience you have to live it.
 I do think that is part of the problem we face today. We have far too many educated folks that don't really know how to do anything. They have degrees in various subjects that hold no true value in the workforce. Not to disparage anyone but how many liberal arts degrees do we need ? Even when we attend a trade school that only prepares us for an entry level position. It may make the student feel better about themselves having that piece of paper, but only hands on experience will make them masters of their trade. I admit that those students will receive a higher starting salary because of that training. Why is that ? Because it is a measurable thing and experience isn't really measurable. I've known some awfully skilled craftsman in my day that didn't have as much as a high school diploma. I've also known some with degrees that couldn't change a tire.
 I guess what I'm asking here is, how do we measure intelligence ? Is it measured by degrees and income earned ? Is intelligence a focused thing or does it cover a broad range ? I've always wondered why it is that those with degrees feel so intelligent. What they did was learn what someone else already knew. I'm certain I could spend four years and learn what was already known in a specific area. Instead I have chosen to spend my life trying to learn things for myself. I have learned I'm not gonna rich doing that. I haven't made any real " discoveries " yet. I'm not done learning. I'm still waiting. You know my dad always told me, " you'll learn one day. " Maybe I will, maybe I won't. One thing is sure, I've never been bored.