Sunday, July 27, 2014

Dumb -Infectiv

Originally published July 27, 2014 via

The clock is tick-tick-ticking off its judgments. Tick – stupid. Tick – Hey, stupid. 

It’s new. I bought it for six bucks at the local five-and-dime. La Virgen de Guadalupe smiles serenely from its face, held aloft by angels. There were two options: burgundy or black; but the black ones were misprints, stretched wide, turning La Virgen into La Gorda.

As I hung up the new prize, I told my wife about the apparent dumbing down of America that’s been going on behind our backs. I’d heard all about it while I waited in line.

“I just found out my kids don’t know how to read a clock. Had to teach them, myself,” said a round woman standing behind me while she studied the clock in my hands. “They’re in high school, for chrissake.”

I nodded sympathetically and put my purchase on the counter.

The cashier had been eavesdropping and piped in, “And they don’t know how to count back change, either. If the register messes up, they’re all, ‘What do I do? What do I do?’ ”

As I told the story to my wife, I mimed a panicking teenager, flailing my arms; coughing and sputtering. I set the clock onto the nail, stepped back and frowned. Off center.

“Lousy kids,” I said

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