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Written on February 25, 2007, and categorized as Secret and Invisible.
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Infomania worse than marijuna shouts the BBC headline, as research claims that people who show addictive behaviour around email and text messages (and probably we should also add, blogs, forums and news sites) suffer an IQ reduction of TEN WHOLE POINTS.

The entire concept of having a measurable IQ is dubious. I remember being tested when I was an eleven year old, and despite that I was the most intelligent child in the class and possibly the school, based on my ability to read, interpret, and apply knowledge to situations, since I didn’t like tests, resistance to answering the kinds of questions I was being asked always masked the results. In fact, I was happy with that since it meant I wasn’t going to have adults crowing over me and taking the credit; but I was acutely aware that the tests themselves were going to reward only a certain kind of thinking, one that had little to do with deeper level analysis, or creative imagination, or confidence.

I remember mathematics teaching becoming less and less interesting, but it didn’t put me off the subject, just the crap teaching. I achieved way under par results until I was fourteen, when realising that I only had two years to sharpen up and get my O levels, the set of exams that more or less determined your future, whether you had any more academia in you, whether you would continue further up the educational ladder, I voluntarily gave up my Saturday afternoons in order to practise old exam papers. I just kept sitting past examinations in the discomfort of a crowded bedroom until, with the aid of One Good Teacher, and a hundred missed games of football and breast-touching adventures under my belt, I passed the stinking exam with eight others, so that I wouldn’t end up on the jobs scrapheap in some kind of blue collar work – amazing how we are all so effectively conditioned by this kind of class snobbery.

Shortly afterwards, having dropped out of sixth form, I was in a dead-end job working for the government in the unemployment office. It was deadly boring and I was becoming progressively dulled by the experience. I would frequently go up onto the roof at lunchtime, having dealt with the public all morning, lines and lines of the dissolute, signing their name on the paper to get their fifty quid per two weeks, and I would get ritually stoned. I rarely if ever made mistakes; this marijuana helped me cope with the pointlessness of the information I was processing by taking me out of it. In time, my self-esteem climbed to the point where I understood that I needed to leave the job, and so I did, and my life began.

These people are confusing intelligence with IQ; they are confusing the information addiction which comes from the anxiety of doing a crap job with the semi-delirium and insight which comes (briefly) from being stoned. And now, before I forget, because I have to check my email and delete a dozen spams offering me viagra and penis enlargement and sexy hot sites, I will quote T. S. Eliot, whose name, as we all know, is an anagram of Toilets:

Where is the Life we have lost in living? Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?

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This thing has 7 Comments

  1. RuKsaK
    Posted 25 February, 2007 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    there is plenty of wisdom in toilets – more than on the internet i feel.

  2. Indigobusiness
    Posted 25 February, 2007 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    What a loaded, bloated topic! I’m tempted to tether myself to it and bleeding float away.

    Nice commentary, very astute, and what a quote!

    It gets down to what is truly valuable and meaningful, and which yardstick measures.

    Clever men are often sharper, wealthier, and better informed than the smiling wiser ones.

  3. La Sirena
    Posted 26 February, 2007 at 12:15 am | Permalink

    Very insightful.

    But then, I’m speaking rather dully from beneath the crushing weight of a soul-sucking job and an addictive personality.

    But I’m working on an escape hatch. Your post appeared like a sign reminding me to keep at it.

    Thank you.

  4. twit
    Posted 26 February, 2007 at 12:49 am | Permalink

    Can I make this work?

    What am I trying to prove?

    ..& to who?

    Show me your intelligence while I smoke your wallet.

  5. dweller
    Posted 4 March, 2007 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Thats why they call it the InterNET.
    Once you’re caught in the net you can never escape!

  6. I.:.S.:.
    Posted 5 March, 2007 at 12:30 am | Permalink

    I reported on infomania and dope on realgem all the way back in May 05

    That, actually, is how I made the acquaintance of Fist, the Joycean madman who spoke with thunderbolts, before he revealed his true identity and stopped the cityfist and finnegans fisted blogs…

  7. I.:.S.:.
    Posted 5 March, 2007 at 12:46 am | Permalink

    funkblog is eternal…

    retarius i don’t know about…

    but bring back finnegans fisted and cityfist!!! go and bother this guy about it…

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