I’m working a lot with a dictionary these days because I’m translating an article for one of my old professors. This morning, I suddenly remembered first learning how to use a dictionary in elementary school and how excited this made me. I loved looking up words and seeing that, indeed, elevate neatly follows elephant according to the rules of alphabetization. And if I was particularly lucky, I’d accidentally land on a word I didn’t know, and learn something new.
All of which sounds kind of silly, now. But it made me feel quite satisfied, back then. And it was so much better than learning how to multiply.