I Don’t Have Time to Read(and other things)

Several times throughout the year a conversation will turn to the number of books I read(around 100 a year) and the other person will respond with a form of “I don’t have time to read.” Or a conversation will be about a television show and someone will say “I don’t have time to watch TV.” or the more popular “I don’t own a TV.” Most of the time, the implication is that I am obviously wasting time while they are spending all of their time on less trivial pursuits.  There is currently a conversation online about how they don’t understand why so much attention is being paid to a “stupid, violent game” like football. Someone actually said “Imagine how much better the world would be if we spent this much time talking about poverty, etc.” I’ve even had it happen with my Starbucks visits. Someone felt the need to point out that they thought it was a waste of money and didn’t understand why I felt the need to waste money on stupid stuff like that.

Of course, the “I don’t have time” people never tell me what they are doing to take up all of this time. Are you curing cancer? Solving world peace? Feeding the hungry? Not likely. Likely, you are spending time on something others would consider trivial because they don’t do it.  Same for the anti-football people. Are you spending a lot of time talking about how to end poverty? How to solve world peace? The cure for cancer? Likely not. You are probably talking about things that interest you that others might find trivial. Anti-Starbucks people? I guarantee I can find something you spend money on that I would consider a waste.

Why does this happen? Are we so concerned about believing we are better than others that we feel the need to belittle their interests? Why can’t we just accept that we all have different interests and shut up about it? Don’t like to read? Don’t read. Don’t like football? Don’t watch. Don’t like Starbucks? Don’t drink it. Just leave others alone and let them enjoy.

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