Thursday, December 15, 2005

We interrupt our regularly scheduled Christmas tune....

....for a rant. Can you hear that sound, like something scraping across the floor? It's just me getting the soapbox in place.

Now, stepping up.


People. Are. Stupid.

Present company excluded, of course, so we're free to talk about the stupid people.

My most recently gathered evidence to back up my claim:

  • I asked a waiter for some hot cocoa and a glass of water. Waiter brings a glass of water and a package of powdered cocoa mix.

  • "American artist Pablo Picasso...."

  • "When did Sherlock Holmes publish his first mystery novel?"

  • "On September 11, 2002, three planes were hijacked...." (this one is actually from a history teacher.)

  • From an MBA student: "i wont email this week b-cuz i m studying 4 finals" (Oh good Lord, please don't let him email me again!)

  • "He came in 4rth place." (no, not a typo.)

  • "We are located on the High Planes of Texas."

I'm leaving out the many instances of "I'll be their" and "we'll have a party hear" that I've seen lately. Those are so numerous and painful that I just can't bear (bare? baer? bayer? beer?) to list them all. The point is still the same:

What the h-e-double-hockey-sticks has happened to the average IQ?

I see these mistakes made by professional business people and educators. We're talking about people who should KNOW better! And the mistakes I see on the evening news. I mean, that's out there for God and everyone to see! I can't tell you how many days went by that our local news show proudly displayed their new logo for a "Music Fesitval." Days!

Does no one employ editors anymore?

And why is it that I can write an email to ask someone more than one question, but all I get back is the answer to the last question I asked? Did I just not need to know the rest and someone forgot to tell me?

Think about it. How many times a week do you hear something on the news about someone doing something insanely stupid and it gets someone killed? I'm just so tired of dealing with people who just won't think. I make a clear distinction between "can't" and "won't."

Maybe in our age of convenience, we're expecting less of our brains. Or, more to the point, less of others' brains. So much is automated, with spell check and grammar check, that we just don't exercise as much gray matter. I've also noticed that an aversion to opening a book is spreading like an epidemic. I adore books, even work with books, so this is particularly alarming to me.

So, what's to be done?

A lot of people need to step up to the plate and hold to a higher standard, whenever possible. Catch a misspelling on the TV? Call or email and let them know! Someone, somewhere will get tired of hearing about it and make a change.

We need to monitor ourselves. If you know better, then just make sure you do better. That MBA guy above knows better. He's almost finished with an MBA, for pity sake. He can manage to look more like a literate person than his emails suggest!

We need to monitor education. If your child's teacher is giving the wrong info, say so. Go to the Principal if necessary. Your child deserves better.

We don't have to sit here and let our world sink into illiteracy.

You might be wondering what brought this on. I spoke to a teacher yesterday who couldn't understand why her exams were under fire for not meeting the state education requirements. They called for her exam to include a question in which "the student describes the impact personal decisions have on health, well-being, future employment, and family." What question did she create to meet this requirement?

"True/False: Snacks are not nutritious."

Oh good gravy.


Parenthetical Thinker said...

She should have called it Junk Food just to make sure they knew the answer that much more.

I have to say - you intimidate me. I'm nervous I'll have to triple spell check all my shit now.

Speaking of curse words. This whole H-E-double hockey sticks thing sticks out now, I believe, in two consecutive postings. Most curious. Because you're divorced, so you've been through hell aready.

If it's said in irony (or, as I have heard before: ironically. Even better, I once heard: ironicalness), then perhaps I join the ranks of the not quite 140 IQ. Having taken one of those stupid tickle tests before, you know, the ones with Einstein in the popup ads, I'm convinced they inflate everyone's IQ in to the 150s. Everyone can't be in the rare-air of the likes of you and I. You and me. You, and a person very much resembling myself in every possible facet.

Mmmm... gravy. Now gravy is not nutritious, either. But you're right. It is good.

That's all for now.

Blogget Jones said...

Intimidated? By lil' ol' me? Pshaw. You have no reason to sweat me!

I'm not near the hard-ass I sound like in this post. That's a cumulative effect of seeing too many of these things from people who know better. Most of what I quoted came from professional documents.

Still, people think I'm that hard on every day communications. I'm not -- just when it's extreme. Honestly, I'm not so much that intellectual snob -- maybe I should temper this blog some?

The "H-E-double hockey sticks" comes from my basic aversion to cursing (from myself, not others). I seem to get over that when I'm consumed by fury, though.

And you're right. Divorce is utter hell.