I love basketball and have been very excited for the NBA Finals Game 4. As such, I decided that this would be a very natural place for me to start and began browsing through Bleacher Report, which is one of my favorite sites. When I looked at the home page, expecting to look for pre-game analysis, I was drawn in by a picture of one of my favorite current players, Kevin Durant. He apparently settled a dispute between rapper, The Game. I perused the article, which spoke of TMZ reporting the dispute before finding out all the details. I generally avoid the gossip TMZ reports, so hit the back key and decided to read manga instead. This came to mind because most releases are on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and NBA Finals are Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays. The day after the games, I usually feel the need to splurge on basketball banter. I usually don’t realize what day it is until I start reading about basketball. I normally read manga to pass the time, so when I was done I was bored. Only when I’m bored do I remember my favorite site to waste time, Cracked.com. The articles I find on Cracked are as random as my thoughts seem to be at times.
Eventually I ended on an article titled “Six Unexpected Things I Learned From Being a Drug Dealer.” Most of the surprises and associations to Bush’s “As We May Think” came from this article, which in itself surprises me. It spoke of things like how we were raised to associate a certain stereotype to drug dealers and how they look and act, or even why they are doing it. What stood out to me the most is how the author said it is this very illusion that we are taught to associate with drugs and drug dealers as young children through programs like D.A.R.E. is what leads some to try it. When propaganda says that all drugs are very harmful and dangerous and will ruin your life, then kids make that association. However, when they grow up and meet someone who does drugs and seems to be functioning in life, the association breaks and due to feeling lied to, the person removes all those associations. For example, if John Doe uses marijuana and gets straight A’s, is it really as dangerous as I think? And if that is a lie, what else did all those anti-drug programs lie about?
I realized that this is not just an issue with stereotypes of drug dealers but the way that association of the mind works. It is forever creating, modifying, and deleting links as new information is processed. When you are a kid, you might associate the opposite sex with cooties. I know I did. At what point did my association change girls from gross, possibly diseased beings to desirable, beautiful beings? The memex abstract idea Bush speaks of, that models human selection through association seemed even more futuristic, if not impossible than it did when I first considered. From basketball, through Japanese culture in manga to a random article about the realities of drug dealers, there were so many thoughts and trails that I decided not to pursue. I feel as if the human mind might be to abstract to effectively model.