The wise don’t make a show of their knowledge, but fools broadcast their foolishness.
No one could get a word in edgewise when he was around. One did not have to be speaking to him in order for him to spot an opportunity to interject and make himself the authority on whatever was the topic at hand. For some people, being the funny person in the room is what gets them attention and makes them feel a part of things. For him, his glory was being the one who had all the answers. In all actuality, most of the knowledge he doled out was inaccurate or incorrect. You see, his goal was not to impart information and help people. The only thing on his mind was gaining a reputation for always knowing just a little more than the next guy. However, those who were truly knowledgeable spotted his foolishness right away when it was clear that he had no idea what he was saying.
It might not be uncommon for people to think that they must add some value to every conversation by sharing new information or having an answer for every question asked. There certainly are people who never want to answer a question by having to admit that they simply do not have an answer. Wise people will share their knowledge when they must and will admit their ignorance when it exists. Fools, on the other hand, make a point to let everyone know what they know, even if they are not really sure what that is exactly. Fools are too prideful to be seen as foolish and will try to occupy the place of intellectual authority for the sake of image. We can call this an exercise of intellectual vanity because it is just another way of trying to look good, but things can get rather ugly when the mask falls off.
I have tried to look smart regarding things about which I certainly was ignorant, and my ignorance was quick to surface in those instances. I can remember times when I had to take my deflated ego, sling it over my shoulder and leave a conversation dragging my pride on the floor behind me. These were painful lessons in my youth, but they were valuable lessons for me to learn. No one has all the answers, and it is okay if I often do not have the answers. If I am wise, I will be humble enough to admit my ignorance. If I am a fool, I will try to mask my foolishness with manufactured knowledge but will be exposed for what I am in time. Father, give us the wisdom and humility to put image and ego aside and to be comfortable having a little less knowledge than those around us.