why pay attention?

Some of you are still thinking that paying attention to the words around you sounds like a lot of work. It can be, but please try it anyway.

“Pay attention” doesn’t mean “pay attention only to other people.” Once you notice all the sneaky, cold-blooded, underhanded, ruthless, mindless, and destructive things people do with language, it’s easy to forget you’re a silly asshole just like everyone else. You have an agenda, too, and the words you’re using to justify your moral convictions can do a lot of damage out there if you’re not careful.

Everything good in the world comes from people who pay attention. Music, art, comedy, science, architecture, engineering, poetry, medicine, shoes, castles, everything. When you bother to notice how something works, you are setting yourself up to be a hero, to create or discover or explain something no one but you could imagine.

So please, remember to notice things. Start with something that doesn’t make sense. Look closely. See where it takes you.