I have met many intellectuals whose conversation was bad for my mind: Marxists, existentialists, postmodernists. A Marxist colleague at the National Enquirer, where I worked for several months in the mid-1960s, never stopped ranting about the evils of "the System." (He had a Ph.D. in history.) A colleague at a Washington think tank, where I worked in the mid-1970s, talked continually about the negative effects of modernity. (He had a Ph.D. in philosophy.) If I hear someone say modernity or dialectical or existential or psychoanalytical, I can no longer pay attention, for I am thinking--perhaps unfairly--that this person is going to bore me to death.
Stephen Miller, Conversation: A History of a Declining Art