Maybe I just enjoy the change of pace. I like the break of not being in the office every day.
Last night, we met friends at a Mexican Restaurant nearby (Rosa's) for a fine meal and conversation. In a few hours we will watch the Baylor men play Texas A & M. It would be nice (during this probation year) to have our third win.
Earlier this morning, I was glancing at the websites of some of the major newspapers including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Miami Herald, etc. At each site, I glanced at the front page. Looking at titles, pictures, etc. I probably did this with about 8-10 news sites this morning. I do this regularly. (Look on the sidebar of this blog and you will see a list of news sites which I glance at frequently.)
Actually, I've been doing something like this for many years, long before I even owned a computer. When I was a student at the Bible college, years ago, I began going to the library at the University of North Alabama. I would do this every few weeks or so. Each time, I spent several hours with newspapers. The New York Times, The London Times. The Washington Post. I would scan through those newspapers looking. What was I looking for? Articles that helped me understand trends or the thinking of this or that culture. Sometimes I looked for the unusual or maybe an essay that was particularly thoughtful. I would copy these articles and read them later.
Then I would start with the magazines, Atlantic, Harper's, People, Nation, Mother Jones, Rolling Stone, etc. I would scan the table of contents looking for articles. I continuted to do this through my graduate school years at Abilene Christian University and Harding Graduate School of Religion (Memphis, Tn).
To tell you the truth, I still do this. No, I don't go to the library every few weeks. But I do try to be aware of movies, music, books, etc. I may not see or listen but I often read the reviews. I try to be somewhat aware of what is on the NY Times best seller list. Either I look it up on-line or I find out the next time I am in Barnes and Noble. Of course there are Blogs and websites that I try to be aware of.
I pay attention to what high school or college students are listening to. I try to be aware of those bands or cultural icons which seem to be front and center at the moment.
All of this has been helpful through the years. There is still, however, no substitute for listening to people. Really listening to another human being.