Talk serious to me, baby

Christine Colleran

I think being serious is sexy. Now I know what you’re thinking and, no, I don’t lie awake at night fantasizing over Steven Hawking and Bill Gates. I am talking about the ability to be serious in moderation, an ability that I don’t see a lot of in my college-age peers.

In a time of internet memes and “Tosh.0” we don’t put much stock in earnest conversation or thoughts, and it seems many of us (myself included) are afraid to be considered “too serious.” We shy away from hard issues and touchy subjects in favor of discussing the merits of Kirkhof burritos (so good, but so stingy with the chicken) or our record keg-stand time (my PR isn’t worthy of publication).

Outside of the classroom, trying to introduce a tough topic of conversation (i.e. welfare, race, political issues) to college students is like trying to feed a baby that orange mystery mush. They are going to close their mouth, turn their head and get distracted by the nearest shiny object. We force babies to eat, its good for them — but we’ve grown out of our highchairs and can’t force each other to think critically.

I often run into fellow students who chose not to have opinions on certain “messy” subjects. That line of thinking is a betrayal to ourselves, and the healthy minds we’re lucky to have.

We don’t stop eating ribs because we get sauce everywhere. No, we put on a bib, grab some Wet Ones and dig in. Difficult subjects of conversation should be no different. Our minds have appetites too, and we need to feed them or risk losing them all together.

That being said, we shouldn’t try to force seriousness into places where it doesn’t belong. I would be supremely disappointed if Zach Galifianakis shaved his beard and joined a monastery. Or if the show “Jackass” went wholesome and focused on raising donkey awareness rather than shooting large objects at cast member’s crotches. We just can’t forget that it’s simply entertainment, and that the success of those seemingly ridiculous people can probably be credited to hard work, serious thought, and making connections.

Trust me, your future boss may be tickled by the fact that you can recite every word of the movie “Stepbrothers,” they might even have a beer with you because of it — but they will still promote your critically-thinking colleague. If you can do both, however, you might just have the world at your fingertips.

All that I ask is that you don’t shy away from a little bit of heavy thinking. You should investigate what confuses you and not be afraid to feel passionately about something. You don’t need to win a Pulitzer Prize to be seriously sexy.

Now that I’ve gone wise sage on you, young grasshoppers, my work here is done. I think I’ll go watch “The Voice”, or rather, watch Adam Levine. Hey, I am all about rewarding a little hard work.

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