McDonald’s is a symbol in America.  A symbol for family.  A symbol for fun.  Hell, a symbol even for food at times.  Red paint.  Gold arches.  The place to get a Happy Meal.

A McDonald’s local to my home town ran into some trouble awhile back when they painted their outside pink.  Yeah, I know, why in the fink would they paint it pink, but that’s really not the point.  Let me explain what happened.

They painted it pink, and it’s next to the highway.  And this driver, this moron, this guy who couldn’t find anything shiny at the moment, saw the pink Mickey D’s and got himself distracted.  And he hit a car.  And that car hit another car.  And pretty soon several people were pissed.

And he said NO!  Don’t hurt me, it wasn’t my fault!  It’s that damn McDonald’s!  Look at it, it’s finkin pink!

So he sued the food joint and settled out of court, and not only did the pink go bye bye, but the grease pit got closed down too.  At least until it turned into a chameleon and blushed to a more livable shade of red.

Now let me explain how en masse this is.  First you’ve got the guy who thought it’d be nifty to slap pink paint on a McDonald’s.  We’ll call him Oaf #1.

Then you’ve got Mr. Shiny, who’s obviously Oaf #2.

Then there’s the morons who reacted in such a way to the pink arches excuse that Oaf #2 thought he could take the matter to court.  I’m not sure how many morons there were, but we’ll settle for Oaf #3 and Oaf #4.

Throw in the lawyer twisted enough to take the case, he’ll be Oaf #5.

And finally the judge who didn’t throw it out, and not only that but signed a settlement agreement.  He’s totally Oaf #6.

So put the six sickos together, and this definitely qualifies as stupidity en masse.

En Masse

En masse

Sometimes stupidity decides to be ambitious and try to take over on a larger scale.  Instead of just one person acting like a moron, entire groups band together, joined by their common lack of basic human intelligence.  They do things and say things and demand things that just don’t make any sense, and they claim to be totally justified.  This phenomena is hereby dubbed stupidity En Masse.

When you’re playing a game or holding a competition, there are generally two possible results.  One of the players can win.  The others, in most cases, have to lose.

When your family is over for Thanksgiving dinner, you tend to eat a lot of food.  As a result, sometimes your pants can start to feel tight.  You undo your belt, and then they are loose.

Lose.  Loose.  Two totally different words, two totally different meanings.  But lately, actually for the past couple years, I see them starting to mesh together.  People all around me, people who claim to be smart, have totally abandoned the word lose.  Instead it’s don’t loose your homework, when did you loose your shoe, it’s not whether you win or loose, it’s… You get the idea.  It happens so much, it’s done so often, by people who should know what is right, that I often find myself checking the dictionary to make sure I don’t loose my mind.  This is stupidity en masse.

Stupidity en masse is all around us.  You don’t have to look very far.  Just turn on the news and you’re likely to find some.  When you do, come up here and share it with me.  This is the place to make them see, or at least to make fun of civilization as a whole.

Half a minute math

So there’s this chick, this girlie, this woman if you’re politically correct, and she’s incredibly wicked stupid, right?  I mean stupid like you wouldn’t believe, so stupid it’s painful to hear about.  We’ll call her Marie cause, well, that’s her name.  I think.

I’m not gonna even try to go into all the ways she’s a moron.  Let’s just look at the one example that really can’t be explained away.  She’s making a Hot Pocket, right?  And I tell her to heat it up for two and a half minutes.  So she puts it in the microwave and hits power and sets the time… and sets it for two minutes, fifty seconds.

I stop her.  I say no no, two and a half minutes.  She looks at me funny.  I look at her.  I say real slow like, two and a half minutes.  She looks at the time.  She looks at me.  She says questioningly, that too long?

I lick my lips and nod my head.  She nods her understanding.  She clears the time and tries again, this time shooting for two minutes flat.

I stop her.  I say two and a *half* minutes.  She looks at me, genuinely confused.  I spell it out.  Two minutes, thirty seconds.  She enters it in.  All is well.

Except I have to live with the knowledge that an adult human being, this chick, Marie, doesn’t quite know what half a minute is.  Benefit of the doubt, she wasn’t born in America, but isn’t half a minute the same worldwide?  Is it different in India or Thailand or Budapest?  Is the system of seconds somehow askew?

Or is this one poor, tortured woman absolute proof of a total lack of intelligent life?

Sharp… or not

Intelligent Life

This section has been made in recognition of one man.  My dad.

Dad is just one of those people.  The ones who cause the powers that be to decide to make a sign that says Do Not Stop on Tracks.  The ones who make their friends groan during conversations.  The ones who are so incredibly, inhumanly stupid that I start to lose faith in humanity.

Just one example – ABC Daytime’s General Hospital has a character on the show named Chloe.   Now, I don’t have a problem with that name, I tend to say it without much difficulty.  But dad can’t seem to wrap his mind around it.  He insists on calling her “Cooey” or “You-know-that-girl.”  Maybe he has a mental block, I don’t know, but it’s not that hard a name.

A better example – for my brother’s twenty-second birthday, Dad gave him a knife from Franklin Mint.  Chris sort of collects knives, and it was a fairly decent gift.  The handle is painted in gold, and a silver eagle’s head sits at its end.  The silver feathers wrap completely around the handle except for one sliver where the blade sits when its closed.

Now, I should tell you that one of Dad’s “things” is that he’s way overprotective.  Not overprotective like normal overprotective, not overprotective like please don’t jump off the canal locks overprotective, I mean way overprotective.  Like warn you to watch out for cars every time you go through a parking lot overprotective.  Like having a heart attack every time you stay home alone even though you’re nineteen overprotective.  Like asking when you stay home alone whether or not you remembered to eat dinner overprotective.  Like finding out you’re going away to college and asking if he can get you to take your mom with you overprotective.  I’m convinced it’s a psychological disorder.

Anyway, judging from past experience, I shouldn’t have been surprised when he did what he did next.  But that’s the thing with these people; they never fail to amaze you.  They never fail to stop themselves and show you that, yes, it is possible to be dumber than they already are.

I’m sure you’re dying to know exactly what he did, so here it is.  He took the knife and opened the blade, a good size blade, maybe five or six inches.  Now I was expecting a comment or a warning about knife-play, and that did come later on, but that’s not what I’m talking about now.  If you’re wondering, though, I believe he told Chris not to kill any of his cats.

No, what I’m talking about now is much, much worse.  He opened the blade, turned the knife over in his hand, examined it up and down, and found something disturbing.  The feathers, the silver feathers, meet the handle in sort of half-points.  Because feathers are pointed at the end.  But where the feathers meet the part of the knife where the blade slides in, there’s no handle.  So the points are just sitting there, waiting for someone else who belongs on this page to inflict a centimeter-deep mortal wound on themselves.  So, because these people spot danger to their own, Dad took his finger, ran it over the feathers, turned to Chris and said…

“Better be careful, it’s kind of sharp right there.”

I don’t think I need to say anymore about my dad.

So in his honor, I give you this section.  This is the place to embarrass your friends, to humiliate your family, and to make all those you love think you’re a jerk.  Whenever you see someone do something dumb, come up here and tell me about it.  If it rates right up there with the dumbest of the dumb, the entire world will get to see it and laugh.

Do Not Stop on Tracks is the section to see just how stupid people can be.  This is the section to see just how stupid people actually are.

Stand Clear

Ever seen a wheelchair get into a van. It works like this…

There’s a lift…

Lift Closed

And it opens…

And then it lowers down to the ground, the chair drives on, it goes back up, the chair goes in.  And the lift folds back up.

Fairly simple, right?  Right.  But there’s a hidden danger you may not see.  It’s tricky.  It’s subtle.  It’s easy to be hurt by.

When the lift is unfolding, it’s very important that you STAND CLEAR.

See if it unfolds, and you’re standing in front of it, the thing will whomp you on the head.  Get it?  It unfolds.  It comes down.  It’ll whomp you right on the noggin.

Good to know for future reference, but don’t worry if you forget, most of the lifts have a convenient warning label.  Right on the underside of the lift itself.  Picture of the grating.  Dude standing in front of it.  Big old red circle with a slash through it.

Once again, lives are saved.

Liquid Flame

Liquid FlameThis is a bottle of lighter fluid. A normal bottle, nothing special, nothing tricky. You spray its contents on some wood or paper or pictures you don’t like, strike a match, and watch the flames with glee. But there’s people out there, many people, who can’t quite grasp the concept.

Enough people that several warnings are clearly displayed as required by law. A veritable brainlesstrust of Do Not Stop on Tracks.

Oafism #1 – Highly Flammable

Lighter fluid. Flammable. If you put a flame to it, it burns. Hotly. Don’t pour it on your flesh to, you know, make sure it works or its the right temperature. You’re not testing it before you give it to the baby to drink.

Which brings us to…

Oafism #2 – Harmful

As in don’t drink it. Don’t pour it in your eyes. Don’t double it as a tasty topping for a sundae. Burn it. That’s what it does, that’s what it’s for. Burn it.

Seems like I’m repeating myself. It must be necessary, though, because…

Oafism #3 – Highly Flammable

In case you didn’t see it before, DANGER. Highly flammable. The substance in this bottle BURNS. It is HOT. It creates FIRE. Is that understood?

And while we’re at it…

Oafism #4 – Harmful if swallowed

Yes, that’s what we meant. Don’t swallow it. Don’t drink it, don’t eat it, don’t dump it on your popcorn instead of butter. Don’t use it as cream for your coffee. Don’t use it as a chaser for shots. Don’t put it in chili, it’s hot, but it’s not sauce. Don’t pour it over cereal, don’t eat it on a chip. It’s not a turkey baste or a marinade for steak. It’s not in any food group whatsoever, and it’s not on Weight Watchers either.

And oh yeah…

Oafism #5 – Harmful if inhaled

…it doesn’t double as poppers either. So if you have a bottle of lighter fluid, for fink’s sake, use it to LIGHT A FIRE.

But don’t get overexcited about it…

Oafism #6 – Do not use near fire or flame

…when it’s lit, it’s lit. Seriously, if the fire… or the flame (there’s a difference, really)… is burning, it doesn’t need lighter fluid. It just doesn’t. The fluid’s done it’s job, don’t waste it. Bad things could happen. You could burn your eyebrows off.

And one more thing…

Oafism #7 – Keep out of reach of children

Because face it, kids aren’t bright. They’re dumbasses. You know they are, we need to protect them, hell, we need to lock them all in cages till they turn 21. Lighter fluid is the bane of a child’s existence, it’s probably like the leading killer of kids or something. Forget abuse and guns and car wrecks and drugs, just for the love of Grroeb keep them away from the lighter fluid.

I mean if adults need all these warning, imagine what their kids could do.

Railroad tracks…

I was on my way home from the movies one day and had to stop at a railroad crossing. A train was coming, the bars were down, you all know how it is. You get to sit there for an interminable amount of time while car after car flies by at speeds that will dizzy you if you try too hard to watch.

So I was sitting there, waiting, trying not to watch the cars, and I happened to glance up. There, above the tracks, a sign was hanging. Do Not Stop on Tracks. Hmm…

Now, obviously no sane person would purposely stop their car on a railroad track. And if they had for some reason I can’t possibly imagine, they would choose to move the vehicle should a locomotive be barreling toward them. But the problem is, someone, somewhere, created the need for this sign. More than once. Enough times for the powers that be to consider it dangerous enough to warn people.

That bothers me. So I thought I’d exploit it for my own entertainment.

I have made it my mission in life, one of the many missions in my life, to seek out other Do Not Stop on Tracks warnings. Warnings that have no business being warned, warnings that would not exist if it weren’t for the impossibly stupid people who create the need for them. This is the section for the publication of those warnings, so we all can see just how stupid people can be.