I have noticed in my lifetime that when it comes to needing information, there are three types of people. The first are the Uninterested. They may need information, but they don’t care enough to go out of their way to find it. They’ll click on articles that frequently pop up in their news feeds, sure, but further research is out of the question. The second category is the Askers. Askers want to know: they’re curious, and they’ll do anything to find their answers– searching down people, books in the library, going to museums and other places of historical or scientific interest– anything at all. Askers also tend to be among the older generation, but notable exceptions include reporters and toddlers (they’re into everything, right?).
The final category is reserved primarily for millennials and those of a similar mindset. I call us the Googlers. We aged right alongside computers and the internet, and our instincts know that the Whole! Wide! World! is right at our fingertips, and answers come as quickly as your data connection. And the best part: we don’t have to leave the comfort of our squishy armchairs and bedroom slippers. We’re anonymous. No one need know the questions driving our endless hunt (unless they flip through our search history, but really, who actually does that?). We feel invincible.
Perhaps the reason I never became a detective is because I’m a Googler, and not an asker. I may be young and naive, and I may pour my life out on the Internet (*ahem, BLOG, cough, cough*)- but I do know that the Whole Wide World is not this way. There still remain undiscovered sects lurking in the minds of the disconnected. Territory untouched by the World Wide Web that holds a vast wealth of information. I am convinced this untapped resource is of greater value than all the finger-searchable facts in the world, for herein lies emotion. Motivation. True, unheard stories. Heartbreak and unadulterated joy. Herein lies humanity at its core. No type-faced interview or three-minute video could ever capture the essence of a person.
And so to know people, I must become an Asker.