As I start to think about what specifically, within the broad context of Biological Anthropology, I am interested in, I cant help but think about the concept of interest.
Why are we each interested in what we are interested in? Why are we pleased by certain concepts or types of work? What experiences have led us to this feeling? And what about those people who have no interests, what happened there?
I thought today about picking a thesis topic. You have to begin with something that you are intrinsically interested in, but that does not seem like a good enough reason. We are interested in; the guy across the bar or a particular movie or exhibit. It seems too fickle and shallow of a word for a thesis topic. Maybe the issue is semantic. There is probably a better way to express the degree variation between ones interest in the guy across the bar and a gene that regulates the immune system.
But maybe there is no difference.
I thought I had a memory problem at my last job, I just could not remember details of the day or the work. My brother pointed out that it was because I was just not interested in it. I didnt believe him. But then when I found something that I was truly interested in I remembered every speck and its location and what it had for brunch on Sunday. Its wonderful to feel sharp. Interest is powerful.
And I have learned that you can be interested in something you are not immediately good at and sometimes that burning curiosity to keep you up at night and make you do foolish things for the cause, is enough to make you good.