September 12, 2012
I remember the first time I attended an Opera. It wasn't romantic... or that much fun. I was 13 years old, and my dad had bought tickets for the family to attend a Saturday night production of La Bohème at Capitol Theater. I dreaded going, I dreaded even the idea of sitting through an entire two hours of people singing in French, and worst of all, I dreaded spending any Friday night without the company or quality of my Dream Street CD.
I remember asking my dad why we had to go. A lot. I'm sure he said something about spending quality time with family, but when I kept persisting, but whyyyy ... I remember him saying something about the importance of broadening our horizons.
Years later, in a British Lit class at BYU, I had a very wise professor ask us why we were in college. Beside, perhaps, becoming informed citizens, gaining necessary credentials, and socializing - why were we there willing to study History? Art? or Literature? Why did something that happened in 1809 matter over two hundred years later? Why read Wordsworth? Practice the piano? Travel thousands of miles to see the Mona Lisa? Or barely survive reading The Odyssey for the first time? Why do we care?
My dad must have taken a class from this same professor, because he said something about broadening our horizons, too... But then he quoted something I doubt I'll ever forget:
Make your mind an interesting place to live for the rest of your life.