Sunday, March 7, 2010

Oh, stupidity, thy name is “ignorance!”

The world is full of stupid people that I believe were put on this planet to make us laugh. As a friend of mine, Leo, said, “There is no lifeguard in the gene pool!” The other day my friends and I were talking about different stories that happened to them while talking to stupid people.

The first story comes from my friend Tamsin who was born and raised in Malawi. She told me that when she first went to England to attend college people would always ask her, “Where are you from?” Tamsin would always politely answer that it was Malawi, which is located in southern Africa. But once those people heard the words “Southern” and “Africa” mentioned together, they would immediately think about the Republic of South Africa which is known in short as South Africa. Without fail they would ask her, “So, what do you think of apartheid?” Tamsin again would patiently tell them that she was not from South Africa but from Malawi, which is located in the southern part of Africa, but it was like beating her head against a brick wall for they never got her. After being asked the same question year after year, Tamsin snapped and answered one day, “I think it’s GREAT!!!” just to see their jaw hit the floor. Her comment to me was that if they were stupid enough to think that Malawi was South Africa then they deserved to think that she believed in apartheid!

The second story comes from my friend Benjamin, who was born and raised in Lagos, Nigeria. Because of the line of work he is in he has to travel from country to country and meet a lot of people. You would not believe this, but there were cases of people actually trying to see if he was painted black! One story he told me just topped them all! One day he met some lady from Norway who asked him, “I heard that people in Africa live on top of trees since there are no buildings in Africa!” Having a good sense of humor Benjamin relied, “Yes they do! In fact, the ambassador from Norway to Nigeria lives on the next tree top over from my own tree!” Do you know what the lady answered? “Oh, I can’t believe he has adjusted so well!”

And the last story is my very own one. As most of you already know, I was born and raised in Ukraine. On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant blew up, causing massive ecological devastation to the whole world. I was 6 years old when it happened and lived about 150 miles south from the town where the accident happened. My region was not affected because the winds were blowing to the north. When I tell people I am from Ukraine some ask about Chernobyl. I used to joke a few of them that because of it I now glow green in the dark! ;-) But I had to stop, because some actually believed me!

It does not matter where you are in the world. You will always be able to come across some really “bright” people that will ask you the world’s stupidest questions! Do not disregard them unkindly! Just have fun!!! :-)


  1. Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

    I hope the person wondering if that man was painted black was a child; that is more excusable. I know a little girl who thought a black man was dirty and just needed to take a bath.

  2. Hah! This blog was great. I love your friend Leo's quote about life guards in gene pools. I agree with you, we should try to adopt a light-hearted attitude when it comes to dealing with the rampant ignorance of the world. Also, if you were to glow green, you'd make a great night light!

  3. That is so funny. I used to get upset every time someone would ask if all of those kids were mine. I would just say yes and walk on. Now I just laugh and say, nah I just found 4 kids that look identical and decided to bring them all with me today. They usually laugh as well, and for me it is quite comical to see the expressions on their faces.

  4. That's why I love observing people and talking to people. People always say that there is no such thing as a stupid question. i beg to differ. Stupid questions are everywhere.

  5. I should take that appraoch more often, I find myself being very irritated and cynical at the darker shades of crayons in the box.