Here's the deal: Each Friday, I'll offer up a different weekend assignment. It won't be something you blog about or something you change your Facebook status to (you can do either after the fact, of course). It's something you go and do. It's homework. It's designed to stretch you and to offer you something you won't get from trolling the Internet or watching sports on TV. Do it if you want to. I promise to make the assignments interesting in order for you to discover something about yourself. Leave a comment about your experience if you'd like. Just try it and see how it feels. I'll report back on Monday on what I did to hold up my end of the bargain.
Weekend Assignment for January 7, 2011: Read Something Different
My guess is that you read the same stuff over and over again - the same newspapers each day, the same magazines each month, the same blogs when you can. Stop it.
Or, don't stop it altogether. But this weekend, just add something else to the mix. Read a chapter from your sister's college textbook on the Qing Dynasty. Pick up a magazine you'd never otherwise read, like something about photography or fantasy baseball. Find a new blog that makes your brain hurt with each post.
Stretch yourself. Read poetry. Or a screenplay. Soak it in. Stick with it to the end of the chapter, verse, or book. See how it feels to be out of your element, to be ignorant at something. Apply what you read to your discipline. How does a vegan chili recipe relate to marketing? What is it about nocturnal animals that teaches you something about education? See what lessons you can learn when you're not surrounded by your usual teachers.