Archive for the ‘Monumental Stupidity’ Category

Stupidity and the Gardener Part 1

Tuesday, October 13th, 2009

Every year about this time, my lone walnut tree erupts with nuts. If you’re a walnut fan and you’ve never had fresh walnuts, ’tis a pity. Just ask my walnut addicted, shell crunching dogs or the thieving, greedy crows (why did God create crows? That question keeps me awake many a night).

I struck a really fair deal with the dogs: walnuts on ground level are theirs. Then I made an equally magnanimous deal with the gosh darn crows: all walnuts at sky level are theirs for the taking. That means the remainder are for me, and my non-idiotic family, friends and neighbors, right?  Not exactly.

My gardener, Eddie, is wonderful, and no, he is not a stuper (short for an exasperatingly stupid person). But his brother, Dumb Dom, is. When Eddie is too busy to do my gardening, he sends Dom and an apprentice.

I happened to be home during one of Dom’s gardening days. I peered out the window and saw, as usual, the gardener’s apprentice toiling over the lawn mower, the weeds and the rake, while Dom played around with a pair of shears, snapping them open and shut at imaginary flies.

I left the window and returned ten minutes later to view Dom beneath the beloved walnut tree, arms busily reaching upward and picking, while his pant pockets bulged with nuts… from the tree.  Then he proceeded to tuck in his shirt and drop walnuts down his neck into his newly formed bag/shirt.

I rapped on the window until he turned toward me. Then I waved, just to let him know I was on to him and hopefully firmly plant the guilt seed. Instead, Dom threw me a wildly dirty look for interrupting him and continued picking. Not to be outdone, I raced outside.

“Mind leaving some for me? I like them too, you know,” I stated fiercely, waving the shovel I held in one hand around threateningly.

Dom grumbled and sauntered away, walnuts spilling from all sides, which my dogs rapidly proceeded to devour. By the way, Dom does not speak English and has been in this country only a short time. Perhaps where he comes from, picking other people’s fruit and nuts is a sign of friendliness and good will. Then again, I hear hands are cut off for less, in some places.

Typically, I pick the fruit and nuts from my trees and pass them out. Even Dom has gotten his own bag of plums and apples. But what to do with stupers who believe mi casa es su casa? What’s yours is mine? I tried heading him off at the pass by giving him his share. You saw where that went. I really wasn’t up to frisking his 6’4″ frame; even in my four inch stilettos, I’m still only 5’11”.

The next time Dom showed up for his so called gardening job, I was ready. I remembered some advice once offered by French Royal and well known stuper, Marie Antoinette, a short time before she was beheaded, “Let them eat cake.” True, such advice backfired for her, but I knew it work on Dom.  Now, at harvest time, I always leave a large piece of cake or three for Dom. That way he’s too busy eating when he arrives and too full for picking by the time he leaves, I give him his share, and I get to keep the rest of the nuts.

Keep thinking.


The Sixth Sense and Stupidity

Saturday, August 8th, 2009

Most of us thinking, breathing humans have five senses. Stupers (short for militantly stupid persons) however, carry around a sixth sense that the rest of us lack. Don’t worry; you’ll be glad you’re missing this one.

Husband (H) drove on a busy highway; a highway that conjures up a warm, special, holiday pudding type of feeling in the hearts of all Caltrans workers, as this stretch of the road has been under construction for over a decade. H’s was the third vehicle in a line of cars traveling around the speed limit of 65 mph.

A sign appeared on one side of the highway, warning, “Flagger ahead.”

A Caltrans worker, sporting the usual trendy (in the highway worker fashion industry) nylon, orange vest, stood down the road, on the side, head slightly tilted, mouth somewhat ajar, arms folded across his burly chest, staring off into the distant horizon, daydreaming undoubtedly of beers and bubble baths (I’ve heard this ale and soap suds combo is big with 4 out of 9 Caltrans workers).

Suddenly, as the lead car in front of H approached, the worker sprang to life. He ran out into the middle of the highway, frantically waving a stop sign above his empty, helmet clad head. The lead vehicle slammed on the brakes, tires screeching, swerving into the opposing lane, which fortunately was empty. The second car skidded, and H, swearing loudly, as he is wont to do in such situations, nearly spun out. The vehicle behind H maneuvered into the shoulder to avoid rear-ending H, barely missing the frantic worker, who scrambled to avoid the oncoming cars. Needless to say, the idiot worker had to deal with several irate drivers.

As ably demonstrated above, stupidity is hazardous. It causes irritation, annoyance, frustration and can even trigger aggression on the part of the receiver(s). In fact, stupidity specialists (namely myself) are now wringing their hands over the huge caseload of untreatable, highly resistant stupidity. Why resistant? Because we have just learned the cause of stupidity stems from an innate sixth sense, highly tuned in stupers. What is this sense? Nonsense.

Nonsense is accelerating in all settings, directly compromising our outcomes. “Directly compromising” is euphemistic. What it really means is that we will eventually lose our minds if we don’t do something. Again, violence is not the answer unless one is particularly attracted to rooms with bars (not the kind with shot glasses and olives, but the decorative, practical, steel enforced variety) and license plate making.

Every person is responsible for making a better world by planting the seeds of patience and harmony deeply in the human heart. Eventually, these seeds will blossom, bringing benefit to all. The authentic, intelligent human is the one who knows how to face challenges with sympathy and understanding. The mark of a great person lies in how he/she faces daily irritations. We owe it to humankind to exercise safety and thought in all of our undertakings. Yes, the Caltrans worker behaved idiotically, but wouldn’t it be better to focus on the fact that besides severe wear and tear on the brakes of the approaching cars, no one was hurt? A grateful heart offsets the ill effects of an encounter with stupidity and helps us to maintain proper perspective and peace of mind.

Try thinking.


Stupidity and Karma

Sunday, August 2nd, 2009

It’s tremendously satisfying as well as entertaining to witness the punishment of an act of stupidity moments after it occurs.

A few years ago, Son #2 and I waited in the car at the local college to pick up Son #1. While we sat, a large pick-up truck pulled in a nearby spot. As the occupant closest to us climbed out of the passenger side, a medium size, white paper bag tumbled out after him. A thinking, considerate human would have automatically picked up the bag and put it back in the truck or thrown it out in a nearby trash can, or at least conducted a quick scan around him for onlookers who’d hopefully shame him out of acting moronically. But this stuper (short again for a predominantly stupid person) glanced at the forlorn bag lying on the asphalt, and then kicked it underneath the truck.

“That’s bad karma right there,” I informed my amused child.

The dimwit next took out a skateboard from the bed of the truck, no doubt late for class, placed one foot on the board and kicked off into…where else? The main drag of the parking lot, filled with drivers hell-bent on finding parking spots.

As a car turned towards the supremely stupid skateboarder at that very moment, he suddenly lost his balance, fell off the board and hard on his butt onto the unyielding asphalt. The car screeched to a halt. The hapless fellow managed to stagger back to his feet, then winced as he rubbed his sorry ass posterior.

I’ve taught my kids never to laugh at the misfortune of others, but when I gave Son #2 a “What did I tell you?” look, he was grinning.

Sometimes there is immediate justice in this world. I’m glad I was there to witness it.

Why not think?


Judging Stupidity

Thursday, July 23rd, 2009

Yesterday, I had more than my fair share of stupidity. Even a stupidity specialist such as myself can get bombarded now and then. First, a legendary literary agent informed me the idea for my blog is “cute,” but the writing didn’t “appeal him.” Okay, I know he meant “appeal to him,”  but really, how challenging was it to insert the small preposition “to” in an eighteen word sentence? I took this quite personally and had to soundly stamp him a stuper (short for an overtly stupid person).  After all, anyone who’s been dealing with the business of words for many decades, should make a small effort to utilize said words with greater care and accuracy. I was highly offended.

Secondly, I made the mistake of calling the US District Court office in Los Angeles with the intent of speaking to a real, live clerk about a question their website didn’t answer. I dialed the number provided for additional information and/or questions, innocently believing my simple inquiry of “Do you need a resume attached to your judicial application?” would be ably answered.

I, naturally, encountered a recording. Was the recording helpful, you may politely ask? About as helpful as tying a piece of thread to a doorknob during a windstorm and then attempting to use the thread to shut the door while standing fifteen feet away. The recorded voice read, verbatim, at an exceedingly slow pace, the exact verbiage appearing on the website, pausing at all punctuation marks for added emphasis or so the tortured listener could run and brew a cup of coffee without missing a word.

Not to worry, dear readers; I’m not applying for a judgeship. I was testing the waters on behalf of a friend. I wouldn’t make a good judge. Anyone who remotely resembled a stuper would automatically be given the death penalty which would unnecessarily clog our appeals courts. It would be a lot of fun though.

Idiocy and annoying thoughts cause a great commotion in our minds. All the more reason to work hard at remaining unruffled. Now if I can only take my own advice…

Why not think?


When Stupidity Gives Advice, Find the Nearest Exit

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

If you live in the big city, I suggest carrying around earplugs or beeswax to promptly stick in your ears because chances are astronomical that you’ll encounter a talking stuper (short, as you all know, for a glaringly stupid person).

If you’ve forgotten to pack the plugs or wax, use your fingers. Believe me, you’ll be grateful you did. If your fingers are painstakingly manicured like mine, and you’re not particularly keen on sticking any fingers in your ears, or if your hands are otherwise occupied with squeezing a tomato, rummaging through a caboose-size handbag or beating up calming a hysterical tot in the midst of his fourth tantrum of the day, then I highly suggest wearing a sign, button or t-shirt that says,

“If you’re stupid, speak to me at your own risk.”

Intelligent, authentic humans reading these words will wink and nod at you in total  understanding. Idiots will hopefully pause their inane chatter long enough to attempt to read your warning, which means that you’ll be long gone before they open their mouths. This is why I can often be spotted walking at a brisk pace when my hands are full.

Alas, my dear friend, V, did not heed this advice when she decided to take her French Bulldog, Lulu, out for a walk. V lives in the big city, in a twelve story tall condo complex, which sits on a street frequented by about 200,000,000 vehicles daily.

Lulu was on a leash as they entered the building’s lobby. Four small dogs, also in the lobby, were unleashed. Two of them were well trained and belonged to V’s friend, Harvey. Those dogs sat and awaited orders. But the other pooches were frantically jumping around on their hind legs in a desperate attempt to imitate canine pogo sticks. Meanwhile, Lulu went crazy. She wanted off the leash to play with or possibly tear apart the two circus dogs. The owner of the circus dogs admonished V,

“You should never have your dog on a leash.”

Keep in mind, these words were uttered in a setting where the welcoming, wide-open lobby doors beckoning misbehaving, not too bright, off the leash, ADD dogs into chaotic midday traffic, were a mere ten feet away. This should have been a red flag for V to break out the earplugs or the beautifully embroidered lace handkerchief, perfect for gagging the stuper mouth; however, she made the mistake of lingering too long because in the next instant, the idiot dog owner parted her lips to open her mouth to spurt yet another dose of idiocy when V and Lulu made a beeline for the elevator.

That was a close call.

If there is any way to avoid having to listen to the unsound advice of a stuper, I highly recommend taking it. Otherwise, a fit of irritation, annoyance and general malaise is to be expected.

Think for yourself.


Dialing Stupidity

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

Do you like to gamble? I don’t. Unless I use some one else’s money. Like the time my mom and I went to the nearest Native American (notice I didn’t say “Indian” or “Injun,” as I strive to be politically correct) Gaming Casino and used their money. The Casino gave $100 credit to anyone who joined their “club.” We did, and we each spent $100 of their money and walked out with our self control intact and $140 cash to split between us. Had it been our money, we would have lost $60. This way, we gained $140. That’s the way I like it. Mom really liked it too.

But I do gamble with stupers (short for irrepressibly stupid persons, as you well know by now).

Mom wanted me to sign her up to for a seminar that she’s attended every year for the past ten years.  I’m in charge of taking care of the details for her.

I typically sign her up online. But when the online form malfunctions, I have to call and talk to a live, but not necessarily, mentally functioning, person, ie, a stuper. When I called last week, the online system was down. I placed a telephone call.

The first customer service representative, who sounded like she’d been smoking for fifty-five years, told me that the only way to enroll was to fax in the forms. Forms available on a website that wasn’t operational. I called again. The second representative sighed deeply, then begged me to try again later. The next one promptly hung up on me, clearly insulted by my request for assistance, but #4 asked,

“Would you like me to do it for you, right now?”

Bingo! I hit the jackpot.

Persistence and patience pay off when you’re forced to deal with stupidity.

Control your mind.


Repeat Stupidity

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Once I’m done with a stuper (short for an unsparingly stupid person), I’m pretty much done. I don’t expect, encourage or incite any further contact.  However, yesterday at the Farmer’s Market, I found myself standing next to the ghastly Kimmie.

I did something I never do; I stared, hoping that if I kept my eyes on her long enough, I’d bore a hole into her empty head and poof! She’d vanish! And I’d wake up, with a vague headache, from my stuper nightmare. But Kimmie refused to disappear.

Kimmie is the one who, my readers with a photographic memory may recall, candidly informed me that because my Son #2 attends a “bogus” high school, he would not be accepted into any colleges. Those prophetic words were uttered during a holiday gathering in which I was forced to share a table with the inane Kimmie. Her so called knowledge blossomed from her expertise as a former high school guidance counselor. By former, I mean in the eighties.

I was about to shake a clenched fist in front of Kimmie’s face when she rudely interrupted two nearby shoppers to explain to them what yarrow was, an herb apparently near and dear to Kimmie’s heart, and one she was about to purchase. Observing that she was not only an expert on college acceptances but yarrow as well, I walked away thinking fatalistically that if I was meant to interact with this stuper again, I’d be given a second chance.

As I was about to leave the Farmer’s Market, I ran into …Tommy Aldridge, major drumming sensation with Ozzy Osbourne, Whitesnake and Ted “I love the NRA” Nugent. I’d interviewed Tommy a few years ago for a newspaper piece and bumped into him every now and then. He is no Kimmie. Though an expert and a much in demand drummer, he is no pseudo know-it-all. He is no stuper.

Just when I thought it was safe to leave, Kimmie showed up again. It seemed almost providential.

“Hi, Kimmie!” I said, smiling.

Kimmie looked at me, totally perplexed, as stupers are wont to look. Six months ago, we sat and talked for a long time; there was no reason for her to forget me, short of insanity…or stupidity. Such was the case. Because try as she might, Kimmie had no idea who I was or any recollection of my son’s “bogus” high school education. I wanted so much to tell that in fact, Son had been accepted to every university he’d applied to, and settled on my alma mater, UCLA. Just as I was about to give up, Kimmie claimed she remembered something; she proceeded to tell me about her life as a teacher and high school counselor. Again. She was still talking up a storm when I left.

There are only two people stupers are interested in: I and me. Meaning themselves. Since I fell in neither category, I never existed in Kimmie’s world. Or maybe I just had a really abbreviated shelf-life.

We’re living among impostors. They’re not aliens, though they might as well be. They’re counterfeit humans. Complete idiots. They may look like you and me…well, maybe not as attractive… but they are not like the rest of us. They refuse to use their minds.

To maintain our sanity, we must avoid the stupid among us and/or not allow them to seep beneath our skin. We must control our thoughts. Thought is not a vague, uncontrollable quality, but a function of a working mind. It’s awareness and experience wrapped up together to provide us with mental power. How we use it.. or don’t,  is up to us.

Viva la thinkers!


Stupidity and the Economy

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

If you ever happen to notice a smartly dressed, youngish woman with great hair, dragging her feet in the parking lot of a bank, unhurriedly making her way towards the entrance doors, while muttering under her breath, that would be me. I’d only been to this particular branch twice, but I hesitated before entering the double glass doors because on both of my last visits, I got the same thing: a lecture. From a kid. Fresh out of college, about the vital issue of why I don’t have an ATM card for my checking account.

“Because I don’t want one!” I would firmly announce while stamping my foot for emphasis, putting an end to his needling once and for all.

I entered and decided to avoid his line to make life easier on both of us, but then I realized all the young male tellers looked and dressed strikingly similar. I’d only seen my tormentor twice and I’m not the most visual person. Which one to avoid?

A window opened. Was it him? I eyed the available teller suspiciously. I waited until he gave himself away.

“How are you today?” the teller asked half-heartedly.

“Very well, thank you. How about you?”

I saw it coming. Any moment now…whining about that ATM card…

He sighed deeply, slumped his shoulders and said in a tone reminiscent of a deflated tire, if it could talk, “Okay, I guess.”

This was not the same teller and no lecture was forthcoming. So I relaxed and we chatted.

It turned out he’d only graduated college a few months ago with a business degree and was worried about getting a good job because of the economy. More specifically, because of what the headlines, pundits and practically everyone who crossed his path told him. This 22 year-old, Mario, a university graduate, felt hopeless and anxious about his future.

Mario should be excited about his future, and I told him so. He had a lot to look forward to because there is always room for excellent, intelligent people. I spoke to him for a few minutes and noticed that he visibly straightened, smiled and looked cheerful. A line of customers had formed behind me; I told Mario that I should leave.

“No, please don’t. I like talking to you. Besides, they think we’re talking business and this is so important.”

I could not believe that I was the first person who told this kid that there is hope out there. That we are in a temporary state. I am dismayed at the psychological mindset that’s occurred because of stupers (short for loquaciously stupid persons) who insist on perpetually reminding us that our economy is weak. As if we don’t know for ourselves.

If you take a child and continually tell him he can’t sing, he may begin to believe that he can’t. And if a large group of people tell him the same thing over and over again, he won’t even try. We, as thinkers, know that there are cycles in life. Some short; some long. The length depends largely on our attitudes, courage and frame of mind. We can’t let the stupid among us get us down.



Stupidity and Negative People

Saturday, February 14th, 2009

How many of us need to be reminded that our current economy is shaky? If you don’t listen to the news or read the headlines, all you have to do is hit the streets to hear: “bleak,” “…despite the economy…” “tough times,”  “gloomy,” “colossal waste of money,” “unemployment high,” and “Paris Hilton is to blame.”

Yet, there are stupers (short for militantly stupid persons) out there who think believe persist in telling us about the state of the economy, like we don’t know. I am reminded, “…it’s because of the economy that no one came to the Farmer’s Market last week.” (Never mind the heavy rains or that the week before, the Farmer’s Market was packed). I am also told, “Things are going to get worse.”

Stupers excel in spreading doom and gloom stories. In fact, they were busy spreading such woeful tales even before the current economic downturn.  Oh, how I wish these idiots who abstain from thought would do the same with words! Since they don’t, I offer my dear readers this example of an authentic human who put a moron and the economy into proper perspective:

Husband (H) is a member of a service club; an organization of business and professional people who provide humanitarian service to help build goodwill and peace on earth. Consequently, they raise money to distribute where most needed. This club annually holds a fundraiser where guests purchase tickets to a Monte Carlo type affair. This year, the Club President, a successful businessman, made this announcement in serious, quavery tones, to a rather large membership meeting:

“The economy is terrible, and we’re going to have trouble getting people to attend Monte Carlo night this year. We’ve lowered ticket prices, but things look grim. They’re not going to get better anytime soon. Don’t get discouraged if no one comes….”

You get the dreary picture. Once the Club President finished, deep sighs, downtrodden expressions and a few frozen, panic-stricken stares filled the room.

This Club invites guest speakers; this meeting happened to have the Director of an International Film Festival present, Javier Valdez. Javier had gratefully moved to the United States from the bowels of South America, leaving an impoverished life and stupers behind, or so he thought. After the Club President ended his mournful speech, Javier stood. He announced,

“We live in the greatest nation in the world. I know because I came from a country that had nothing. I came here with no education, no money, no grasp of the English language. Look at me! I am Director of a huge Film Festival. My life is a fairy tale because this is the land of opportunity. We’ve all been through hard times. We will persevere. You must believe and know that your Monte Carlo night will be a great success! Your fundraiser will be a great hit! It is up to you! Be positive and it will be so!”

Javier was met with a resounding round of applause.

We can’t control forces outside of ourselves. Witness the economy or any run-in with an idiot stuper (redundant for added emphasis). But we can control our attitudes and reactions. Have you noticed that, often, when you feel, I mean deeply feel, enthusiastic, upbeat, and/or happy, you’re met with more of the same? Anything else is a waste of our precious energy. Don’t give in to the stupid among us. Don’t allow them to dictate how you should feel. And yes, Paris Hilton is to blame.

Keep thinking.


When Stupidity Sits at Your Table and Courtesy is Required

Tuesday, December 9th, 2008

When attending a large, boisterous Christmas party, it’s positively guaranteed that a stuper (short for a prodigiously stupid person) will be seated at your otherwise cheery table. And so it was for this seasoned, stupidity specialist.

Husband (H) and I sat at a circular table of ten revelers at what promised to be an elegant, festive evening thrown by a noteworthy charitable organization. I chose to overlook…er, undersmell, the lingering odor of horse manure suspended over the parking lot; it is, after all, the countryside in which I live.

I sat between H and the delightfully pleasant Carter. Carter’s expression, demeanor and words oozed sincere kindness. Next to him sat his wife, Kimmie. Inflexible, blunt and tarnished, Kimmie had all the charm of a used kitchen knife that’s been relocated to the garden shed and used for stabbing stubborn bags of topsoil and chubby, slow-moving gophers. I don’t like gophers.

Loud music and shouting were the norm as the evening unfolded. I am relatively soft spoken and lack a necessary “sending” voice (which is reserved solely for yelling at my children on rare occasions); I find it exhausting to perpetually holler my words over thunderous, front row seat, rock concert-like noise. Consequently, I mostly listen at such gatherings. But Kimmie insisted I speak.

The conversation started out harmless enough. Kimmie’s interrogation went like this:

“What do you do? What do you do when you’re not doing that? Where do you live? What is your street address? How old are your kids? Do they live at home?”

When I answered yes to the last query, Kimmie practically went into labor. “THEY BOTH LIVE AT HOME?”

One of my kids is in high school and the other in college, located thirty-five minutes away. They both still live at home which makes me quite happy. They’ll be moving out soon enough. Apparently, my child-infested domicile greatly disturbed Kimmie. I later learned that her thirty-year-old daughter moved out at age eighteen to attend an east coast college and since stayed far away. Please note: this was not Kimmie’s display of seismic stupidity. That came later.

Carter fanned Kimmie at great length, finally calming her; then she switched tactics. She elected to inform me that she was a former teacher and high school guidance counselor who extensively knew the ins and outs of applying to colleges. Learning that my Son #2 is in the throes of college applications, she asked me which ones he showed interest in. I fell for the bait and gave her the list. She responded,

“Oh, no. He won’t want to apply to the University of California in Irvine.”

I was genuinely puzzled. The school garnered rave reviews. She continued,

“The cafeteria… it serves…”

I immediately thought, the food is bad? Then she explained,

“They serve mostly Asian food! They’re all Asians there. You don’t want him at a school filled with Asians.”

I’ve been working industriously, tirelessly, on raising my tolerance level, having to deal with stupers on an ongoing basis, in order to provide valuable suggestions for my dear readers and to set a stellar example. Consequently, this wholly idiotic comment barely affected me. I merely sighed and discreetly rolled my eyes while feigning a sneeze.

Then the ever insensitive, inane Kimmie asked what high school Son #2 attended. I grudgingly told her it was a small, private school, and this is what she said, without hesitation,

“That is a bogus school. He’s not going to get into college.”

At that moment, I grabbed H’s thigh so fiercely beneath the table, he winced in pain, nearly falling off his chair. Don’t worry, dear readers, I caught him before he hit the ground. I’d had enough.

I took a good, long, hard look at Carter; how could he be married to the very embodiment of stupidity? Then I considered seizing the nearest microphone (my voice was hoarse by this time) and blasting Kimmie with a wide array of articulate expletives or just staying put and pulling out her strangly hair. Since I wasn’t leaving the party anytime soon, I decided to maintain my unblemished reputation. I had to employ a different tactic.

Some of my astute readers may recall the looks I reserve for stupers: Look #1 – A kindly stare, (think Mona Lisa), indicating great tolerance and just a touch of exasperation. Look #2 – a stern, reproachful gaze; one that subtly promises at least a pinch of action if the stupidity continues. For Kimmie, I quickly devised Look #3 – a dazzling smile on the lower half of my face, but my eyes…

assured instant pain if the stuper so much as looked my way. The rest of the evening was passed in glorious silence by Kimmie.

Stupers lack the requisite intent that accompanies malice or wickedness. They are merely and utterly moronic. Such idiocy is amplified by unhappiness. If Kimmie was a happy person, she would not have engaged in such unbecoming, distasteful and rude behavior. For the rest of us to live happily among the stupid, we must be free from mindless behavior. Happiness is a mental state which can be attained by thinking first, then using our words in the most positive manner.

Just think.