Declare Independence From Stupidity

Declare Independence From Stupidity

Philosopher Albert Camus said, “Stupidity has a knack of getting its way”. Thus far, 2020 has been a banner year for stupidity. For example, in China, people ate the flesh of diseased wild animals, allowing a highly contagious, pernicious virus to cross contaminate and kill humans all over the world. In the U.S., Republican demagogues and pundits politicized and exploited the pandemic, labeling the deadly virus  “a Liberal hoax, ”an attack on our president,” “the common cold,” “just the flu, ”or dismissed it with: “There are more important things than living.” Camus was right.

In Minneapolis, five violent, spiritually bereft men tangled, caused a murder and reignited the festering, fetid cesspool of rage against racial bigotry and injustice. True to form, Republicans politicized and exploited it, attacking the effects of the rage rather than the cause. 

Eventually, they created a disastrous photo op where the self- proclaimed “Law and Order President” ordered peaceful demonstrators and Episcopal priests tear gassed and dispersed so he could pose with an upside-down Bible. Camus would be delighted.

Luckily, a pleasant antidote to stupidity is a sense of humor, which is a sign of high intelligence. Accordingly, on July 4, we can celebrate independence from stupidity with laughter. These jokes, gleaned from Catskills comics, are a fine way to start.

Eighty-five-year- old Herman and his 83-year-old wife Mona were on their way to Santa Cruz, driving 17 mph. A Highway Patrolman pulled them over, to admonish Herman for driving too slowly. He noticed that Mona was shaking and pale, white as a sheet. 

Herman was irate. “What’s the problem, officer? I’m driving the speed limit!”

The officer chuckled and said, “Sir, 17 is the highway number, not the speed limit! Then he asked, “Is your wife OK?”

“We just pulled off Highway 101,” she gasped. 

Moishe had been a waiter at New York’s famed Carnegie Delicatessen, where the grumpy, elderly waiters were known for their rude, sarcastic remarks to customers. Famed food writer Calvin Trillin told the tale of a Carnegie waiter’s response to a customer’s offer that a sandwich of particularly lean pastrami would garner a favorable review to the waiter’s boss. The waiter replied, “The boss! May the bosses’ nose fall off!”)

When the deli closed, Moishe decided to pursue a  new career  involving his passions, song writing and  piano playing.  He noticed that a local piano bar was hiring pianists, so he arranged for an audition.

When his time arrived, he sat with the bar’s owner and played one of his compositions.

“That’s absolutely beautiful,” exclaimed the excited owner. 

What’s the name of the piece?”

“It’s called, ‘You’re too Fat to Eat Here! Go on a diet!,’” replied Moishe.

“That’s a terrible title!” cried the owner with dismay.

“It is what it is,” Moishe answered.

The owner was skeptical, but Moishe’s musicianship was impeccable, so he asked him to play another tune. This one was more magnificent than the first, true virtuoso work With great trepidation, he asked for the title.

“That one’s called ‘Madam, Who Did Your “Facelift? The Coroner?’”

The owner grimaced but thought of a solution. He hired Moishe, and told him to simply play his music, without speaking to the customers. When Moishe was done with his sets, he was to go to the bar, have a drink, but not talk to anyone.

Moishe did as he was told. When time for his second set arrived, he went to the men’s room first. As he exited, a woman walked up and said, “Do you know your fly’s unzipped, you moron?”

“Know it? I wrote it!” shouted Moishe.

Ira and Irma were escaping the Cleveland winter at a hotel in Miami. On their first night, they went to the hotel restaurant for dinner. After they were seated, Ira realized that he had left his hearing aid in the room.

“Not to worry,” said Irma, “I’ll just talk really loud”

The waitress arrived to take their order. She asked where they were from

“What did she say?” bellowed Ira.

“She wants to know where we’re from!” screamed Irma

The waitress then remarked that she had dated a guy from Cleveland.

“What a greedy, ignorant, ill-mannered, cheapskate he was!” she laughed. 

“What did she say?” Yelled Ira

“She says she knows you!” howled Irma.

Declaring independence from stupidity by voting in November at