Thursday, April 9, 2009

Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

By the very definition of the word 'average', 50% of the people around you are below average. In the U.S. Congress this percentage is much, much higher.
The U.S. Congress, however, is only the most obvious example of stupidity. It is obvious mainly because it's ignorance is on such a large scale and has continued uninterrupted for such a long time. Pointing out examples of governmental stupidity is too easy.

[Note: Picture of Bush was supposed to go in the above spot, but I am just too tired of looking at him. Hope you understand.]

It is more entertaining to report on  individual acts of stupidity - those of your everyday "average" friends and co-workers; the population base from which your Congress springs. Here are my candidates for the horse's ass award, gleaned from the internet from blogs who stole them from someone else:

1. (Winter 1995, Michigan) During the ski season at Sugarloaf Resort, a new lift operator was assigned to work the bottom of Lift 2. He was greatly impressed by the bull wheel that turned slowly above his head. The giant spokes on the wheel were impossible to resist. He grabbed onto a spoke and did a few pull-ups while the wheel turned.

After entertaining himself in this manner for a while, he decided to try this trick on the outer rim of the wheel. His timing was off. He did not drop down in time. Caught between the wheel and the lift cable, he was sliced in twain during this fateful final trip around the bull wheel.

"Just think how stupid the average person is,
and then realize that half of them
are even stupider!"
--George Carlin

2. (20 April 2008, Atlantic Ocean, Brazil) A Catholic priest recently ascended to heaven on a host of helium party balloons, paying homage to Lawn Chair Larry's aerial adventure. Larry, the beloved survivor of a Darwin-worthy fiasco, attached 45 helium weather balloons to his lawnchair, packed a picnic lunch, and cut the tether--but instead of drifting above the Los Angeles landscape as planned, he was rocketed into LAX air traffic lanes by the lift of the weather balloons. Astoundingly, Larry survived the flight.

Father Adelir Antonio, 51, was not so lucky.

His audacious attempt to set a world record for clustered balloon flight was intended to publicize his plan to build a spiritual rest stop for truckers. But, as truckers know, sitting for 19 hours in a lawn chair is not a trivial matter even in the comfort of your own backyard. The priest took numerous safety precautions, including wearing a survival suit, selecting a buoyant chair, and packing a satellite phone and a GPS. However, the late Father Adelir made a fatal mistake.

He did not know how to use the GPS.

The winds changed, as winds do, and he was blown inexorably toward open sea. He could have parachuted to safety while over land, but chose not to. When the voyager was perilously lost at sea, he prudently phoned for help--but rescuers were unable to determine his location, since he could not use his GPS. He continued to struggle with the unit as the charge on the satellite phone dwindled into nothingness.

Instead of a GPS, the priest decided to let God be his guide, and God guided him straight to heaven. Bits of balloons began appearing on mountains and beaches. Ultimately the priest's body surfaced, confirming that he, like Elvis, had left the building.

3. (16 July 2008, Italy) Gerhard, 68, was queued at a traffic light in his Porsche Cayenne sportscar. Before one reaches the light, there is a railroad crossing, and Gerhard had not let the queue progress forward far enough before he drove onto the tracks. As you might imagine, given Murphy's Law, a train was coming.

The safety bars came down, leaving the Porsche trapped on the rails. According to witnesses, it took the driver awhile to realize he was stuck. Finally he jumped from the car and started to run--straight toward the oncoming train--waving his arms in an attempt to save his sportscar!

The attempt was partly successful. The car received less damage than its owner, who landed 30 meters away. Attempts to revive him were unsuccessful.

The moral of the story? Momentum always wins.

I would LOVE to hear the best "stupid human tricks" you have heard about.


  1. Thanks for the giggle.

    I am pleased you pointed out the obvious, that I had forgotten. I feel as if I am surrounded by stupid people lately, but of course statistically, 50 of the people I work with are stupider than the rest. Hopefully, given the fact that I notice their stupidity, I perhaps am not one of them...?

  2. It is impossible for me to comment here about stupid people. I've just spent all evening being one of them.

  3. Ah, the joys of Darwin awards. More frightening for me, though, that these people who were too stupid to live are those folks who are equally idiotic but manage to vote and reproduce.

    If you know what I mean.

  4. @Caroline - You would never be one of them. :)

    @A. - I don't think you would ever be one of the either. :)

    @Stephanie B - Yes, I know what you mean. You are talking about those people who voted for Obama, but you are just trying to be nice.

    Kidding. God, I hate there is not some sort of test before one can vote. But the Green lady I voted for didn't even get 1%, so what do I know? Nothing.

  5. Or a minimum qualification to reproduce.

  6. I am just happy that any of the stupid things I have done does not warrant as "news headlines".

    I loved the way you told the one about the catholic priest

  7. @Frostygirl - I hope you will tell me about the "stupid" things you have done. Please? :)

    I'm glad you enjoyed the stories I found here and there around the internet. Although I paraphrased some and edited some, I can't really claim original authorship of everything. (Neither can the blogs I stole the stuff from. :)

  8. Thank you! It's been awhile since I've seen any Darwin awards. Like Stephanie, I'm far more afraid of the people who are stupid enough to kill themselves, but insist on remaining alive and being a nuisance to the world.

    A redneck's last words: "Hey, watch this!"
    His best friend's last words: "Hell, I can do that!"

  9. @Linda - I love these. And I love all redneck jokes.

    Somewhere in my travels I read that inventors are supposed to say "Eureka!" when they discover something, but more often they say, "That's odd..." -- the exact same words dumb people who are about to blow themselves up probably say. :)

  10. So are you a fan of Jeff Foxworthy? My brother-in-law went to high school with you, and when the Wizard turned 50 last year, Jeff called and SANG to him on his answering machine! One of his jokes was made at their expense, and the Wizard's mother has never forgiven him for it. (If you have a cable-wire spool as a table.)
    signed, Linda, aka Janet



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