A respected friend, Michael Rodarte, commented on my Montessori piece last week on Facebook.
MR: IMO, people should talk to those who are “doing better” in order to progress in the hobby they love.
I think too many people these days get angry at people doing something they love at a higher level. Instead, they should approach that person and ask competent questions to learn from someone who is doing well.
ME: Solid. Like stepping up into the realm of mentoring.
MR: Yup. Mentoring or the old Tradesman/Apprentice structure.
If people continue to just look at those with more skills and knowledge as “haters”, we will be in for a big surprise 15-20 years down the line.
When the smart people pass, their knowledge will die with them, unless someone saw the opportunity and tried to learn from them.
I’ve long believed the best way to raise the bar is by building up the foundation.
And I’ll admit I’ve generally come from a somewhat socialist point of view in that regard. Pay the goddamned burger flippers $15 and hour—and watch how quickly they spend it. It’s that simple.
But Michael points out the other side of that coin. It doesn’t matter how much marketing has convinced you that you deserve everything your heart desires—immediately, with zero effort. That’s bullshit and you know it. You gotta earn it.
We’ve got to reframe expertise. Go ahead and covet thy neighbor. But be do yourself a favor and love him, too. Be his friend. Get to know him. Learn from him.
Nothing can stop you from learning about something you truly want to learn.
Get off your ass and learn something today.
You’ll be glad you did.