Writing and Hero Worship

There was a period starting from when I graduated from university that I felt intellectually bored. There’s something about learning the basics of a job that is deeply humbling – you kinda feel like you’re in elementary school.

So I got into blogs and podcasts. I’ve learned at least as much from these folks as I did from all my U profs and have tossed the writers/speakers onto pedestals, as one does with those one admires. I have once or twice imagined myself meeting these people and I’m intimidated by the very thought!

So I read this by one of the most impressive denizens of my blogroll: Tyler Cowen. And I’m amazed by his adoration of Bill Simmons. What!? Bill Simmons? The funny guy that writes about bullshit (ie sports) every day? I’m sure I read somewhere that sportswriting is the vocation that least contributes to society. I’d go so far as to suggest that Bill would even agree). And I love sports!

I don’t even know what my point is here. Maybe that wisdom comes from weird places. BS’s (his initials!) favourite author is David Halberstam, who also resides in Arnold Kling’s pantheon. Maybe it’s that great writers transcend their subject, yet Roissy toils in crossover obscurity (mostly).

Is it weird that I find it comforting that the people I admire admire the people I admire? Is it weird that all this reinforcing admiration makes me feel even less admirable myself?