The Educated Person

Big Red Car up early because I have a lot of contractors coming today. So, a chap asks me what constitutes an educated person when they leave college.

Don’t really know why college is relevant, but here is a definition of what I think on the subject.

The educated person

The educated person, youngish version, embraces four things:

 1. Critical thinking;

 2. Intellectual curiosity;

 3. Marketable skill; and,

 4. Can tie the monkey’s fist knot.

The educated person and critical thinking

The educated person should be able to analyze an issue or solve a problem through a disciplined approach which relies upon data, information, research to support a conclusion which is consistent with the evidence and which is presented with reliance upon precise evidence.

Many young folk resort to dealing with such issues by cataloging how they “feel.”

Critical thinking is not about how you feel, but what the evidence supports and the process of obtaining that evidence.

The educated person and intellectual curiosity

The educated person routinely marshals the energy coupled with time and effort to understand things which they may not understand through experience. This is how an educated person confronts new situations and unfamiliar circumstances. As you can see, it is directly related to critical thinking.

The educated person and a marketable skill

The educated person masters a marketable skill, meaning something which will pay you sufficient compensation for performing such that you can live with a degree of financial independence, paying your bills as they come due.

The absence of a marketable skill may sentence you to a long stretch of residing in your parents’ basement which is a real problem in places like Texas where there may routinely not be basements.

If you want to be a sculptor or poet — two fine professions, but ones which may not chin the bar of being “marketable” — then, you will have to buttress that passion with some practical skill like graphic design or finish carpentry or welding.

[Welding joke: What is the only thing a good welder cannot join with a competent weld? The crack of dawn, tissue paper, and a broken heart.]

Pro tip: If you cannot find a job offering at for the skill you want to master, it is not a “marketable skill.”

The educated person and the monkey’s fist

An educated person is able to fashion a monkey’s fist knot from a hank of rope. There are many who may contest this assertion, but I am certain none of them can actually tie the monkey’s fist.

The monkeys fist as knotted from a forty-five foot piece of jute rope with a ceramic ball in the center. The monkeys fist is affixed to the end of a line as a weight to assist in throwing that line into the wind in a marine setting. It is a critical skill for an educated person. It is a little tricky to make the lanyard part, but you can do it.

If you can’t tie the monkeys fist — which is also called the monkey’s “paw” – then harness your intellectual curiosity and do some critical thinking and learn how to tie it. See, how it all “ties” together.

Bottom line it, Big Red Car

Being an educated person is not like running the high hurdles in the Olympics. It is a basic package. In the continuum of bronze, silver, gold — it is the bronze level.

Are you an educated person?

I think you are.

But, hey, what the Hell do I really know anyway? I’m just a Big Red Car, y’all. Have a great day.