Learn something every day

By · Saturday, February 19th, 2011

BBC map

As I sat here this morning reading the news online, I read a two-sentence graph reporting that Egypt had allowed two Iranian warships to pass through the Suez Canal, the first time that had happened in three decades and cause for concern for Israel. The New York Times said the ships were on their way to Syria. (The story actually was about a powerful Sunni cleric making his first public sermon in 50 years.)

But that little detail about the canal tweaked my curiosity, and it got the editor in me thinking about the canal, which is a key strategic transit point in a region of unrest. I really know nothing about it. And that’s not so good. I got to wondering:

Even though I’m not an editor working in a newsroom, I felt an obligation to know these answers. And thanks to trusty Google, I got them, from reputable sources, in no time. This is the “editor’s disease,” of always reading and always wondering. The cure for this “sickness” is to go get the answers. Sharp editors — whether they are in sports or features, local, national or international news — should always read the news, and always feel the urge (obligation) to be fully informed about it.

That doesn’t simply mean reading the news.

Be an active and curious reader. You could start here, or anywhere you wish, to learn more.

Did you know the canal opened in 1869 and was just 8 meters deep?

Steve Davis

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