I Wish I’d Said That!

ideaAs I get older, I realize a ton of people are a lot smarter than I am.  When I look at the world (even wearing my rose-coloured glasses) mostly all I see is benign chaos.  However, some people can look through all that and see where the little bits of truth are hiding.  These are the folks who instantly grasp an idea, distill it down to a single sentence, flip it onto their tongues and then effortlessly blend it into the conversation.  I know envy is one of the 7 Deadly Sins, but, for all the world, I envy these people ’cause on the rare occasions when I do that, I spend the rest of the day walking just a little taller.  Here are some examples and each one, when read carefully, demonstrates some serious understanding of the world we live in.

Journalism largely consists of saying “Lord Jones is dead,” to people who didn’t know he was alive.
G.K. Chesterton

The perfect lover is one who turns into a pizza at 4:00 am.
Charles Pierce

Television has proved that people will look at anything rather than each other.
Ann Landers

It’s dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.
Voltaire

A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks for a funeral.
H.L. Mencken

The trouble with her is she lacks the power of conversation but not the power of speech.
George Bernard Shaw

A critic is a man who knows the way but can’t drive the car.
Kenneth Tynan

The trouble with some women is that they get all excited about nothing — and then marry him.
Cher

An alcoholic is someone you don’t like who drinks as much as you do.
Dylan Thomas

It was as stupid as taking a cauldron and a broom to a witch hunt.
Najira Olsen

Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn’t have to do it himself.
A.H. Miller

Do you realize that, if it weren’t for Edison, we’d be watching television by candlelight?
Al Boliska

It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.
Jean Rostand

Love thy neighbour as thyself, but choose your neighbourhood.
Louise Beal

The average person thinks he isn’t.
L. Lorenzoni

What this country needs is more free speech worth listening to.
Hansell Duckett

We’re all in this alone.
Lily Tomlin

Where did I find the time to not read so many books?
Karl Krause

A fair fight is the one you win.
French Foreign Legion

And that greatest philosopher of them all — Anonymous

Show me a good loser and I’ll show you a loser.

If it wasn’t for the last minute, nobody would get anything done.

Whoever said “money can’t buy happiness,” didn’t know where to shop.

No one ever bets enough money on a winning horse.

If you talk to God, you’re praying.  If God talks to you, you’re nuts.

Truth

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Despite what philosophers and college sophomores try to tell you, Truth is not an elusive beast.  It’s not some shy chimera, hiding in a morally ambiguous forest, feeding on tender buds of nuance and leafy shoots of supposition.  It’s not semantically ambivalent.  It’s not coloured in a million shades of grey.  It’s not a matter of opinion.  Nope! None of the above!  Truth is real.  It’s big.  It’s bold.  It’s etched in stone.  And I can prove it.  Here are some hardcore facts — no ifs, buts, or maybes.  This is Truth, and it’s happening all around us.

The square of the hypotenuse (the side opposite the right angle) is equal to the sum of the squares of the other two sides.

There are three kinds of people in the world — those who understand math and those who don’t.

Your family always knows which buttons to push because they installed them.

Rock Bottom has a basement.

Paris is always a good idea.

The distance between loser and lover is sometimes measured in tequila.

Pregnant women are smug.

If you keep your clothes long enough, they might eventually come back into style — but by the time they do, they won’t fit.

A low-cut neckline beats a bad hair day every time.

The probability of red wine getting spilled on white carpet is directly related to the cost of the carpet, not the cost of the wine.

The only birthdays that actually matter are 18, 21, 40, 50 and 60.

And my favourite:

Everybody wants a sensitive man until the sonofabitch actually shows up.

4 Ways To Find Truth – Plus 2 More

 

Truth is an elusive commodity.  We humans have been hunting it ever since Lucy and her girlfriends dropped out of the trees, in Ethiopia, mucho millennia ago.  Over those centuries (and certainly in the last 5,000 years of recorded history) it was generally agreed that there were only four ways to actually find truth.  Most of us learned this when we took Philosophy 101 in university (to punch up our grade point.)  However, here in the 21st century, our ever-expanding egos have outrun our ability to think rationally.  We now dismiss most of our society’s collective wisdom (including the search for truth) as the archaic ramblings of dead Europeans.  To that end — surprise! — the Millennials have added two new ways to find truth.

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Using the modern analogy of the bus stop, let me demonstrate.

Let’s say we’re embarking on the great journey of life and need to know where to catch a bus (the bus being a clever metaphor for truth.)  Here are the four traditional ways to find the bus stop.

1 — The Authoritarian Path — Somebody tells you where the bus stops.
This is the simplest and most direct method, unless, of course, the authoritarian figure you choose is a jackass.  In that case, you’ll probably end up either praying for a bus, fighting with your neighbours to see who drives the bus, or being told that The Fearless Leader doesn’t like buses and you better learn how to walk.

2 — The Scientific Path — You experiment until you discover where the bus stops.
This is the most common method.  It involves standing at various places along various streets, waiting for a bus to a) show up, in the first place, b) stop, or, c) drive right by.  This will work — eventually.  Unfortunately, truth by trial and error normally results in a lot of error, and you can literally spend years waiting for a bus.  In most cases, by the time you do figure it out, collate all your data — test and retest — you’re too damn old to enjoy the bus ride.

3 — The Mathematical Path — You collect other people’s theories about where the bus stops.
Sometimes called The Peer Pressure Path, this method relies on finding out where other people wait for buses and standing there too.  Although this method does work, given the number of people in the world, how easily influenced they are and the vast number of buses available, the chances of you actually getting the bus you want are pretty slim.  Generally, you’ll spend most of your life riding around on somebody else’s bus.

4 — The Artistic Path — You intrinsically know where the bus stops.
This method consists of knowing in your soul that the bus always stops where the sign reads “Bus Stop.”  When this works, it is a thing of beauty.  However, the vast majority of people who claim to be artists can’t actually read.  Thus, they spend their days, wasting their time (and yours) waiting for the bus under Stop signs, No Parking signs and Directional markers.

In conclusion, the truth remains as elusive as ever.  However the Millennials may have solved the problem.

Here are the two new ways to find truth:

5 — The Social Media Path — You use technology to tell everybody where the bus stops.
This occurs when (even though you have absolutely no evidence to prove it) you type “There is a bus stop at 8th and Alma” into your computer.  You accompany this information with a cute kitten, a puppy or some boobs and send it into out on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and any other social media you can think of.  Your “Friends” “Like” your post and “Share” it with their “Friends,” who, in turn, “Share” it with their “Friends” who … you get the idea.  Soon, somebody creates a website “Fans of the 8th Ave Bus Stop.”  Other websites follow and people begin podcasting, blogging and vlogging about the bus stop.  The mainstream media picks up the trend, and within the next 48-hour news cycle, there are 14 news reports, 3 documentaries, several celebrity interviews and an HBO drama in development.  Within days, so many people are aware of the Bus Stop at 8th and Alma that, even though it doesn’t exist, it becomes the truth.

6 — The Offended Path — You’re suddenly offended that the bus doesn’t stop exactly where you want it to.
This method works on the premise that you are not responsible for finding your own bus and that the bus company is systemically evil for not providing you with one.  What happens is you read somewhere that there’s this really cool bus stop at 8th and Alma.  You immediately start bitching and moaning, that you don’t have a bus stop, using buzzwords like “injustice,” ” inequality,” “corporate greed” and “social change.”  The mainstream media, already aware that the bus stop at 8th and Alma is trending, take up your cause.  (Victims are news.)  The bus company, scared skinny of negative publicity, don’t even try to explain that there isn’t actually a bus stop at 8th and Alma.  Instead, they reroute several other buses (inconveniencing hundreds of people) to put a bus stop in front of your house — so you’ll shut up.  Invariably, you’ve  raised so much awareness — and money — as a social activist you can afford to travel by taxi.  Truth and Justice are served.

Somebody once said, “The Truth will set you free.”  These days, I’m not so sure.