- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Do you remember those commercials with the egg? “This is your brain.” Crack. The egg fries in a pan. “This is your brain … on drugs.”

I would argue that journalism is far more dangerous for me than any drug, however. In fact, I think I’ve become an addict: The other day I started on our newspaper, moved onto Google News, then went to Drudge. I’m now checking Associated Press, CNN, the St. Petersburg Times, the New York Times, the LA Times, The Post and the New Scientist on a daily basis.

The Washington Times is not just a publication in its own right: it’s a gateway addictive.

Now don’t get me wrong: I’ve loved my internship at The Washington Times. Indeed, whereas last summer I was figuring out what it was that I wanted to do with myself, this summer I’ve been building myself up to be a better journalist, and maybe — just maybe — as a better writer, wordsmith, or what have you.

I think the most useful thing The Times has taught me is how to find a story. Since making my way to D.C., I’ve gotten into the mindset that there are stories everywhere. No matter where you look, if you find the right angle, the right direction, or just simply cutting against the grain, there’s always something new to say.

Yet I’m starting to get a little afraid of all this growth. Case in point: When I was on my way to work Monday, a purple SUV ran a stop sign and nearly plowed into me. My all-too-brief life flashed before my eyes as tires squealed and a Ford grill came rushing toward my face. The only thing I could think was: I wonder what kind of story I can get out of this?

Apparently, my belief in the First Amendment has developed into some sort of manic disregard for my environment, the laws of physics and the icy finger of Death himself: Indeed, this is the sort of optimism that would make even Evel Knievel say, “Whoa! Stay inside for a little while!”

It makes one wonder if perhaps I’ve been doing too much journalism.

This is your brain. This is your brain on journalism. Any questions?

David Pepose is a member of the Class of ‘08 at Brandeis University.

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