The last word

Will Milner thinks this is the dawning of the age of the idiot

The Knowledge

You are probably not the dumbest person in your workplace.You might be. Perhaps you’re the sort of spluttering moron who has to have the water-cooler explained on a daily basis. Or maybe you’re the sort of shrieking simpleton who gets stuck in the lift at least once a week. But the chances are you are not. Only one person can wear the dunce’s cap in any given situation and, statistically speaking, it is probably not you. Nor, for that matter, are you likely to be the laziest, the meanest or the dullest. Congratulations!

Don’t celebrate just yet though. Because it is just as unlikely that you are the smartest, kindest or most charismatic either. At least you’re not the dumbest though, and that means a lot these days. Because simpletons are everywhere. They’re taking over. In shops, driving cars, in lifts, anywhere you look, in fact. There is even one sitting at the desk next to me right now: scratching her head and eating a bag of peanuts.

Idiots used to be dished out quite evenly. One per village. Now they congregate in packs on Facebook, talking about what flavour crisps they like best. Don’t get me wrong – I enjoy watching belching dog videos on the internet as much as anybody and, unless I concentrate, I am prone to falling into a trance and humming a TV theme tune. But at least I can tie my own shoelaces and am able to go about my business without being a threat to others. My point is (I’ve decided) that I’ve become desensitised to senselessness. This is the age of the moron. People wear their stupidity on their sleeve, or through a T-shirt slogan. It is something to be proud of.

We’re all a bit silly sometimes. Who amongst us can really say they have never mistaken a tube of toothpaste for pile cream and limped around with a minty bottom for a week? Nobody is always bright. But try keeping your daftness to yourself for a while, eh?

Next time you do something stupid don’t tell everybody. Because it is happening more often and as Forrest Gump said: ‘Stupid is as stupid does.’ Instead, wait until you do something clever, thoughtful and useful to society and then go and tell everyone about it.

But until then, watch the belching dogs in silence please.

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