And here is what I came up with today: It's based on an aphorism attributed to Will Rogers - "Everybody is dumb, just on different topics."
Couldn't be more right. Take me. What I know about dinosaurs and the solar system could fit in one of the little plastic cups that come with cough syrup, and yet I know children - pre-schoolers! - who know more about those topics than I do, and I say good for them. As long as T Rex isn't charging after me when I go to the Try 'N' Save, and the sun keeps coming up every day, I'm fine not knowing why the former doesn't happen and why the latter does.
But...there's always a but. Why do so many of us talk of things about which we know nada, zilch, zed, zero. F'rinstance, the recent disappearance of the Air Asia plane - still a mystery as I write this - has brought out a veritable plethora (all plethoras are "veritable," just like all long waits are "seemingly interminable") of people whose work brings them no closer to Asian air travel than the latest issue of US Weekly, and yet are willing to state what happened to that Malaysian airplane earlier this year.
"It was shot down by the Taliban"
"It was hijacked to Syria"
"It was vaporized by gamma rays by the Martians"
And they make these statements so unabashedly, and their friends all form an echoing chorus of approval, never once asking, "How do you know that?"
|Jerry Lee Lewis|
And we're polite enough to act like we agree.