Comedian Bill Engvall is known for his comedy routine about people being stupid. He says some people are so brainless they actually need a stupid sign hanging around their necks. Imagine after all these years how excited I was to find British researchers announced over the weekend a cause for stupidness. They have discovered an algae like virus that causes cognitive degeneration in humans. In other words, they proved there is actually a virus that causes people to be stupid. The study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Back in the 60’s comedian Flip Wilson used to say of his failings, “The devil made me do it.” Now, apparently, idiots can unite over algae as a liberating force. Have you noticed how much time and resources people spend making excuses for their own idiotic and foolish behavior? I’m not buying this study. Stupidity isn’t a small virus, it’s pandemic.
How do I know? I remember some years ago as a food service director of a nursing home, the alternate sandwich one night was listed as peanut butter and jelly. My cook, who had a bachelors degree, called me that evening and asked, “Tonight you have peanut butter and jelly on the menu, do you want that on bread?” I responded, “Do you usually eat peanut butter and jelly in a bowl with a spoon or on bread?” There was a long pause and then she said almost in a question, “Bread?”
At another place of employment I had a young cook who was not gifted in the culinary department. The nursing home residents were not happy with her abilities and I got an earful. One day, I ordered a frozen gourmet soup and told her, “You don’t have to cook, just warm it up and serve.” I left contented knowing even she couldn’t mess this up. The next day, as I arrived to work, I asked her how the evening meal went and how the folks liked the new gourmet soup. To which she quickly replied, “I couldn’t use it.” “Why not?” I asked. She replied, “Because it was frozen!”
Don’t believe me on how widespread stupidity is? Consider these warning labels found on everyday products:
“Do not use in shower.” — On a hair dryer.
“This product not intended for use as a dental drill.” — On an electric rotary tool.
“Do not drive with sunshield in place.” — On a cardboard sunshield that keeps the sun off the dashboard.
“Not intended for highway use.” — On a 13-inch wheel on a wheelbarrow.
“Caution: Hot beverages are hot!” — On a coffee cup.
“Caution: Shoots rubber bands.” — On a product called “Rubber Band Shooter.”
“Do not use orally.” — On a toilet bowl cleaning brush.
“Please keep out of children.” — On a butcher knife made in China. “Do not use as ear plugs.” — On a package of silly putty.
“Warning: knives are sharp!” — On the packaging of a sharpening stone.
“Warning: has been found to cause cancer in laboratory mice.” — On a box of rat poison.
“Caution: Remove infant before folding for storage.” — On a portable stroller.
“Do not iron clothes on body.” — On packaging for a Rowenta iron.
“Wearing of this garment does not enable you to fly.” — On a child sized Superman costume.
“Warning: do not use if you have prostate problems.” — On a box of Midol PMS relief tablets.
“May be harmful if swallowed.” — On a shipment of hammers.
“Do not attempt to stop the blade with your hand.” — In the manual for a Swedish chainsaw.
“Warning: May contain nuts.” — On a package of peanuts.
“Warning: May cause drowsiness.” — On a bottle of Nytol, a brand of sleeping pills. “Do not use orally after using rectally.” — In the instructions for an electronic thermometer.
“Turn off motor before using this product.” — On the packaging for a chain saw file, used to sharpen the cutting teeth on the chain.
“Not to be used as a personal flotation device.” — On a 6×10 inch inflatable picture frame.
I could offer you further proof of stupidity, but haven’t we all had enough of politics for at least one week?