9 July 2009

The Stupidity of Others, Part 1

This is the first in a long running series* wherein I will rant about people and how stupid or ignorant they are. Please note, they may not actually be particularly stupid or ignorant at all, but it makes me feel more intelligent by comparison, and I get to experience the vicarious thrill of anonymously belittling them.

*By 'long running' I mean that I'll do it a couple of times then lose interest and not bother anymore.



Today, at work, chatting to colleagues.

Me: So, what browser do you use at home?
Colleague: Just Google.
Me: Ah, Google Chrome, yes?
Colleague: No, just Google.
Me: You mean the Google home page?
Colleague: Yep.
Me: (after a pause) You don't know what a browser is, do you?
Colleague: No. No, I don't.

On this particular occasion, I don't think I need to elaborate further.


That Film

Colleague: I saw the fourth Indiana Jones film in HMV today. It was only a fiver. I think I might buy it.
Me: This conversation is over.

Quite how I stopped myself launching them out of the window at speed, I'll never know.

That film (I refuse to acknowledge it's name) is a hateful, pustulent, ill-conceived, badly-scripted, poorly-directed pile of shit. It angers me almost to the point of cardiac arrest just thinking about it. If you own a copy, go away immediately before I trace your IP address and pay you a brief but memorable visit.


How To Ruin A Joke

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where someone tells a joke in mixed company, hilarity ensues, and then one of the group suggests you repeat the joke you told them the other day?
Of course you have. Everyone has. It's a perfectly normal thing to happen.
You then proceed to tell the joke, everyone laughs loudly and is absolutely amazed at what a truly amusing and pleasant person you are, and what a wonderful time they're having in your excellent company.

Unfortunately, there is a particular breed of person who, for some strange, unknown reason, can only remember a joke by its punchline. In and of itself, not a terrible thing, I suppose. However, they take this minor character flaw and compound it by deciding to ask you to tell the joke by giving away the punchline.

Colleague: Dan, tell the Patrick Swayze joke.
Me: (pause) No.
Colleague: Go on, it's really funny.
Me: Not anymore it isn't.
Colleague: Eh?
Me: You have, in the depths of your stupidity, just announced the punchline. Everyone here is now aware of how the joke ends. They can see where it's heading before I even open my mouth. When I speak, all I will be doing is, effectively, explaining the journey to a destination that they've already reached. They will smile politely. There may be a nod of understanding or, more likely, a groan. What there won't be, however, is laughter. Now, perhaps I'm being unnecessarily anal about this, but my opinion is that the entire point of telling a joke is to elicit laughter. If no laughter comes, then I have failed spectacularly to achieve my goal. Do you understand now, why I'm not going to tell the joke?
Colleague: OK, tell the one about the nine-year old weiner.
Me: Boh.

(alright, most of the tail-end of that conversation never actually happened, but I think my point still stands)


Andy said...

Dear Dr Dan

I am a film fan of some years with a loyalty problem. I often find myself watching ones that I know will be bone-jarringly awful for no other reason than I liked the first one in the series/it has a vague connection to a favourite writer/Ron Perlman is in it. Past ordeals I have been through include J*ws The Revenge, Hellraiser IV: Bloodline and Aliens Versus Predator.

The fourth Indiana Jones film is going to be on Sky Movies in nine days. What am I to do?

Andrew, The North

Dan said...


Thanks for contacting me.

There's no need to be embarrassed about watching the occasional bad film - we've all done it! Who among us didn't sit in the cinema, pleasantly moist with anticipation at The Matrix Revolutions, Spiderman 3 or Jurassic Park 2, only to leave the theatre older, wiser and significantly angrier?

It is important to realise, however, that all of these films were actually quite enjoyable in their own right, it's simply that our expectations were far too high.

Indiana Jones 4, however, is a canker on the arse of cinema.

It is an undulating boil filled with baby spiders, ready to split open on society's face and send us, screaming, into an endless abyss of nightmarish insanity.

It is a horrid, malodorous, deformed child deserving of a short, tragic life locked in an attic, forever regarded as the dark, shameful family secret that must not be spoken of.

In short, Satan himself ate a third-rate movie script written by gibbering inbreeds, washed it down with three foaming pints of bile, and shat it onto celluloid with a mighty, baritone grunt of victory.

Do. Not. Watch. It.

If you do, you will contract cancer of the soul and die in shrieking, existential agony.

Lots of love,

Dr Dan.

Benny C said...

I see the therapy is going well then?

Dan said...

I have good days and bad days...