Tagged as: culture and general snark

Why I’m Embracing My Inner Pessimist


Coming back from vacation in northern Vermont a few weeks ago, my husband and I fantasized about buying a piece of land up there and building a cottage off the grid. The land would have to be in some utopian mountaintop location that is simultaneously extremely remote and near a community of people with skills we don’t have. The cottage would have geothermal or solar power, a productive well, a large vegetable garden, a hen house, and somehow, we don’t know how, a cloak of invisibility. Short of that, there would be a key to the deadbolt that we’d one day give to our daughter when we’re very old and say, “Go there. If things get really bad, just go there. It’s yours.” Read more…

The Disintermediation of Expertise: Why We All Think We Know It All

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I’m an enthusiastic believer in the value of expertise. If I don’t have it, I go about finding it and, when necessary and possible, paying for it. It’s how I learn new things, and how I go through life with the fewest possible blunders. It’s efficient, too. I can’t be an expert at everything! There are people who know more about children’s vaccinations than me and people who know more about climate change than me, and they aren’t Hollywood celebrities or politicians. Read more…

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