A Greek among geeks: Importance of asking the right questions…

Ask, ask and ask again....!

Ask, ask and ask again....!

Contrary to a popular perception, I’m not a geek. If anything, I’m closer to the ancient Greeks than geeks.

This is how I summed up my own self when talking to a group of media tycoons and senior journalists in Colombo earlier this month.

I explained: I keep asking more questions than I can answer. The ancient Greeks did the same – they were the first to ask many fundamental questions in philosophy and science. They didn’t always get the answers right, but started quests that lasted for millennia…

As Ed Johnson recently wrote: “We have so many things to thank the Greeks for, from philosophy to democracy. They were the ones who established the first civilization, governed by free citizens. Individual liberty has been the basis of civilization ever since.”

It so happens that I recently completed 40 years in this business of playing the Greek. As I recalled a few weeks ago on the 40th anniversary of the first Moon landing, I had an early start in asking difficult, sometimes irritating, questions.

I’m fortunate to be welcomed among media practitioners as well as media researchers. I’m not a card-carrying member of either group, but I have great fun hobnobbing with both. This is what Irish journalist-cum-academic Conor Cruise O’Brien once called ‘having a foot in both graves’!

And I’m also grateful for being allowed into the community of geeks, especially of the IT, ICT and gadget-wielding kind.