Also see Knowledge and Learning, Knowledge Song Lists, Foolishness Song Lists, and Word Play.
- Being open minded is too time consuming.
- Certainly everyone is entitled to have an opinion--but NOT everyone is entitled to have his opinion taken seriously. (Kenneth Tynan)
- Common sense is the least common of all senses. (from The Drifters by James A. Michener)
- Common sense is what tells you that the world is flat.
- A conclusion is simply the place where you got tired of thinking.
- Don't use a big word where a diminutive one will suffice.
- Everything happens for a reason...sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.
- Exhilaration is that feeling you get just after a great idea hits you, and just before you realize what's wrong with it.
- Gonads are useful for their purpose, but they are no substitute for brains. (Paul Harvey)
- Half the people you know are below average.
- He was so narrow-minded he could see through a keyhole with both eyes.
- Help stamp out and eradicate superfluous redundancy
- How can you know what you think until you open your mouth and hear what you say?
- How do you tell when you run out of invisible ink?
- How is it that we put man on the moon before we figured out it would be a good idea to put wheels on luggage?
- I am pretty sure that the person who put the first ‘R' in February also decided how to spell Wednesday.
- I didn't call you stupid, but when I asked how you spelled Mississippi and you asked if I was talking about the river or the state, it just kind of caught me off guard.
- I hate it when people don't know the difference between "your" and "you're". There so stupid.
- I just got lost in thought. It was unfamiliar territory.
- If ignorance is bliss, why aren't more people happy?
- If the #2 pencil is the most popular, why isn't it #1?
- If we knew what we were doing it wouldn't be research.
- If you ever get locked out of your house, talk to the lock calmly. Because communication is key.
- In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but, in practice, there is.
- Information's pretty thin stuff unless mixed with experience. (Clarence Day)
- An intellectual is a man who takes more words than necessary to tell more than he knows. (Dwight D. Eisenhower)
- Intelligence has much less practical application than you'd think. (Scott Adams)
- It is OK to let your mind go blank, but please turn off the sound.
- It's not an optical illusion. It just looks like one. (Phil White)
- An intellectual is a person who can listen to the William Tell Overture and NOT think of the Lone Ranger.
- Learn from the mistakes of others. You can't live long enough to make them all yourself.
- Logic is the art of going wrong with confidence.
- Message on a leaflet: If you can't read, this leaflet will tell you how to get lessons.
- Never express yourself more clearly than you are able to think.
- The only reason people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory. (Paul Fix)
- People are very open-minded about new things--as long as they're exactly like the old ones.
- People demand freedom of speech to make up for the freedom of thought which they avoid.
- People think of the inventor as a screwball, but no one ever asks the inventor what he thinks of other people. (Charles F. Kettering)
- People write ‘congrats' because they can't spell congrajlashins.
- Philosophy is a game with objectives and no rules. Mathematics is a game with rules and no objectives.
- Sarcasm: an ingenious way of making intelligent people feel stupid.
- A sharp tongue is seldom an indication of a sharp mind.
- A single fact can spoil a good argument.
- Some of y'all never read 100 books to get a personal pan pizza, and it shows.
- Some people drink deeply from the well of knowledge. Some just rinse and spit.
- Someone who thinks logically provides a nice contrast to the real world.
- There is nobody so irritating as somebody with less intelligence and more sense than we have. (Don Herold)
- There's nothing more frightening than ignorance in action.
- There's nothing wrong with having nothing to say--unless you insist on saying it.
- To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism--to steal from many is research.
- The trouble with facts is that there are so many of them. (Samuel McChord Crothers)
- We have enough youth, how about a fountain of smart?
- We occasionally stumble over the truth--but most of us pick ourselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.
- Well-adjusted means you can make the same mistake over and over again without getting upset about it.
- What if rocks are actually soft but just tense up when we touch them?
- What is the difference between ignorance and apathy? (I don't know...and I don't care!)
- What's another word for Thesaurus? (Stephen Wright)
- When in doubt...mumble.
- When you can't think of a word say, "I forget the English word for it." That way people will think you're bilingual instead of an idiot.
- Why do people pay to go up tall buildings and then put money in binoculars to look at things on the ground?
- You can pretend to be serious; you can't pretend to be witty.
- The great tragedy of science--the slaying of a beautiful hypothesis by an ugly fact. (Thomas H. Huxley)
- If you're not part of the solution then you're part of the precipitate.
- If your car could travel at the speed of light, would your headlights work?
- In physics, you don't have to go around making trouble for yourself--nature does it for you. (Frank Wilczek)
- Maybe oxygen is really bad for you but it takes up to 100 years or so to kill you.
- Nothing in the universe can travel at the speed of light, they say, forgetful of the shadow's speed. (Howard Nemerov)
- Nothing puzzles me more than time and space, and yet nothing puzzles me less, for I never think about them. (Charles Lamb)
- Observe Gravity--it's the law!
- OK, so what's the speed of dark?
- Physics is Phun
- Science is everything we understand well enough to explain to a computer. Art is everything else. (David Knuth)
- Science is wonderfully equipped to answer the question "How?" but it gets terribly confused when you ask the question "Why?" (Erwin Chargaff)
- A scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it. (Maxwell Planck)
- To those who think that the law of gravity interferes with their freedom, there is nothing to say.
- We can lick gravity, but sometimes the paperwork is overwhelming. (Wernher von Braun)
Quotes about History
- After you've heard two eyewitness accounts of an auto accident, you begin to worry about history.
- History does not repeat itself; historians merely repeat each other.
- History is the version of past events that people have decided to agree upon.
- History repeats itself because nobody listens.
- History repeats itself; historians repeat each other. (Philip Guedalla)
- History must repeat itself because we pay such little attention to it the first time. (Blackie Sherrod in the Dallas Morning News)
- Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so. (Douglas Adams)
- I thought about being a historian, but there's no future in it.
- It might be a good idea if the various countries of the world would occasionally swap history books, just to see what other people are doing with the same set of facts. (Bill Vaughan)
- Old anthropologists never die they just become history.
- Remember your history. To forget is to not belong. (Charlotte A. Black Elk)
- There is no future in being a historian.
Math Facts and Figures
- 111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321 (Probably only people who enjoy math would think this is cool - I am one of those people.)
- Dear Algebra, Please stop asking us to find your X. She's never coming back and don't ask Y.
- Five out of four people don't understand fractions.
- The generation of random numbers is too important to leave to chance.
- If parallel lines meet at infinity--infinity must be a very noisy place with all those lines crashing together!
- Math illiteracy affects seven out of every five people.
- Math problems? Call 1-800-[(10x)(13i)^2]-[sin(xy)/2.362x].
- The only way I can distinguish proper from improper fractions is by their actions. (Ogden Nash)
- Osborn's Law: Constants aren't; variables won't.
- Rule of math: If it seems easy, you're doing it wrong.
- Some of it plus the rest of it is all of it.
- There are three kinds of people: those who can count and those who can't.
- There's a fine line between a numerator and denominator. For some reason only a fraction of people find this funny.
- As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality. (Albert Einstein)
- Don't worry about your difficulties in mathematics. I assure you mine are greater. (Albert Einstein)
- For the things of this world cannot be made known without a knowledge of mathematics. (Roger Bacon)
- How long did it take six men to build a wall if three of them took a week? I recall that we spent almost as much time on this problem as the men spent on the wall. (Gerald Durrell)
- I knew a mathematician who said 'I do not know as much as God. But I know as much as God knew at my age.' (Milton Shulman)
- I never did very well in math--I could never seem to persuade the teacher that I hadn't meant my answers literally. (Calvin Trillin)
- If it can't be expressed in figures, it is not science; it is opinion. (Lazarus Long)
- It's strange how few of the world's problems are solved by people who remember their Algebra. (H. V. Prochnow)
- Mathematics possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty--a beauty cold and austere, like that of sculpture. (Bertrand Russell)
- Numbers constitute the only universal language. (Nathaniel West)
- Obvious is the most dangerous word in mathematics. (Eric Temple Bell)
- Philosophy is a game with objectives and no rules. Mathematics is a game with rules and no objectives.
- Relationships are a lot like algebra. Have you ever looked at your X and wondered Y?
- What do you get if you divide the circumference of a pumpkin by its diameter? Pumpkin π
- A statistician can have his head in an oven and his feet in ice, and he will say that on the average he feels fine.
- A statistician is a person who draws a mathematically precise line from an unwarranted assumption to a foregone conclusion.
- If I had only one day left to live, I would live it in my statistics class. It would seem so much longer.
- 42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot.
Quotes about Spelling
- Bad spellers of the world, UNTIE!
- Bumper Sticker: I souport publik edekashun.
- Hookt on Fonix rilly wurkt fer mee!
- It's a damn poor mind that can think of only one way to spell a word. (Andrew Jackson)
- Teenage boy: "Bleah, What *@*and# weather."
Mother: "Watch your language. What's happening? Can't people express themselves anymore? Every movie, every conversation seems to be peppered with garbage words!! There are thousands of wonderful, descriptive words to choose from...why do people today constantly repeat the same stupid four-letter words?!!"
Father: "Maybe they like to stick with the ones they can spell!"
- A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. (Douglas Adams)
- Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool.
- The only fool bigger than the person who knows it all is the person who argues with him.
- Sometimes the majority only means that all the fools are on the same side.
- The surprising thing about young fools is how many survive to become old fools.
Quotes about Stupidity
- Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.
- Before we work on artificial intelligence why don't we do something about natural stupidity? (Steve Polyak)
- The biggest cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid people are so sure about things and the intelligent folks are so full of doubts. (Bertrand Russell)
- Even duct tape can't fix stupid ... but it can muffle the sound.
- Even if the majority agrees on an idiotic idea, it is still an idiotic idea.
- Everything happens for a reason...sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.
- Genius may have its limitations, but stupidity is not thus handicapped.
- God must love stupid people because he made so many of them.
- I took an IQ test and thankfully the results were negative.
- I used to be stupid but I've turned that situation around 360 degrees. (Scott Adams)
- I'm not a complete idiot; some parts are missing.
- I'm not saying we should kill all the stupid people ... I'm just saying let's remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.
- If stupidity got us into this mess, then why can't it get us out? (Will Rogers)
- If you make something idiot proof, someone will just make a better idiot.
- Many wise words are spoken in jest, but they don't compare with the number of stupid words spoken in earnest.
- My people skills are just fine. It's my tolerance to idiots that needs work.
- Man to co-worker: How are you always so calm?
Co-worker: Because I don't argue with stupid people. I just cut it short and say "You're right."
Man: That's completely ridiculous!
Co-worker: You're right.
- Nature has a way of compensating for weaknesses, which is why stupid people have big mouths. (Scott Adams)
- Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.
- A sinner can reform, but stupid is forever.
- Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. (Martin Luther King, Jr.)
- The problem with the younger generation started with bicycle helmets, and then it was 'everyone gets a trophy'. Kids don't know what it's like to feel pain when they do something stupid. Stupid should hurt.
- Stupidity is like nuclear power, it can be used for good or evil. But you still don't want to get any on you. (Scott Adams)
- Stupidity should be painful.
- There are four things that hold back human progress. Ignorance, stupidity, committees and accountants. (Charles J.C. Lyall)
- There is always one more imbecile than you counted on.
- There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life
- The two most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity.
- What do you mean by telling everyone that I'm an idiot?
I'm sorry, I didn't know it was supposed to be a secret.
- What we need is a patch for human stupidity.
- When you're dead, you won't even know you're dead. It's a pain only felt by others. Same thing when you're stupid.
- Does your train of thought have a caboose?
- Everyone has a photographic memory...
some people just forget to put in the film.
- The gates are down, the lights are flashing, but the train isn't coming.
- He doesn't have ulcers, but he's a carrier.
- He has a knack for making strangers immediately.
- He is depriving a village somewhere of an idiot.
- He got into the gene pool while the lifeguard wasn't watching.
- He's been working with glue too much.
- He's got a full 6-pack, but lacks the plastic thingy to hold it together.
- His wheel is turning, but the hamster is dead.
- A hundred thousand sperm and you were the fastest?
- I don't know what your problem is but I bet it's hard to pronounce.
- If he were any more stupid, he'd have to be watered twice a week.
- It takes her 1-1/2 hours to watch 60 Minutes.
- If you see two people talking, and one looks bored, he's the other one.
- It's hard to think of you as the end result of millions of years of evolution.
- She certainly takes a long time to make her pointless.
- She donated her brain to science before she was done using it.
- She has a photographic memory but with the lens cover glued on.
- Some people stop to think and then forget to start again.
- The wheel is turning but the hamster is gone.
- What am I, a Weirdness Magnet?
- When she opens her mouth, it's only to change whichever foot was previously in there.
- Your ridiculous little opinion has been noted.
Famous Last Words
- I'll get a world record for this.
- It's fireproof.
- He's probably just hibernating.
- I'm making a citizen's arrest.
- Are you sure the power is off?
- Yeah, I made the deciding vote on the jury, so what of it?
- I've seen this done on TV.
- These are the good kind of mushrooms.
- Let it down slowly.
- Rat poison only kills rats.
- Just take whatever you want, this is a ghost town.
- It's strong enough for both of us.
- This doesn't taste right.
- Nice doggie.
- I've done this before.
- Well, we've made it this far.
- That's odd.
- Don't be so superstitious.
When we have a pet peeve it's amazing how often we pet it.
- People who are willing to get up and search the entire room for the TV remote because they refuse to walk to the TV and change the channel manually.
- When people say "Oh you just want to have your cake and eat it too". Of course! What good is cake if you can't eat it?
- When people say "it's always in the last place you look". Of course it is. Why would you keep looking after you've found it? Do people do this? If so, why?
- When people say while watching a film "did you see that?". No, I paid $12 to come to the theater and stare at the floor.
- People who ask "Can I ask you a question?"... Didn't really give me a choice there, did ya?
- When something is 'new and improved!'. Which is it? If it's new, then there has never been anything before it. If it's an improvement, then there must have been something before it, so it couldn't be new.
- When people say "life is short". Life is the longest thing anyone ever does! What can you do that's longer?
- When we are in the supermarket and someone rams our ankle with a shopping cart then apologizes for doing so, why do we say, "It's all right?" Well, it isn't all right so why don't we say, "That hurt, you stupid idiot?"
- When you are waiting for the bus and someone asks "Has the bus come yet?". If the bus already came would I still be standing here at the bus stop?
In Honor of Stupid People
If you need proof that the human race is doomed, here are some actual product instructions.
On a Sears hairdryer:
Do not use while sleeping.
(Oh no, that's the only time I have to dry my hair).
On a bag of Frito Chips:
You could be a winner! No purchase necessary. Details inside.
(the shoplifter special?)
On a bar of Dial soap:
"Directions: Use like regular soap."
(and that would be how . . . ?)
On some frozen dinners:
"Serving suggestion: Defrost."
(but, it's just a suggestion).
On the bottom of a box containing a dessert:
"Do not turn upside down."
(well . . . duh, a bit late, huh)
On Marks & Spencer Bread Pudding:
"Product will be hot after heating."
( . . . and you thought . . . ?)
On packaging for a Rowenta iron:
"Do not iron clothes on body."
(but wouldn't that save time?)
On Boot's Children Cough Medicine:
"Do not drive a car or operate machinery after taking this medication."
(We could reduce accidents if we could keep 5-year-olds with head-colds off forklifts.)
On Nytol Sleep Aid:
"Warning: May cause drowsiness."
( . . . and I'm taking this because . . . ?)
On many brands of Christmas lights:
"For indoor or outdoor use only."
(as opposed to . . . what?)
On a Japanese food processor:
"Not to be used for the other use."
(Somebody, help me on this. I'm a bit curious.)
On Sainsbury's peanuts:
"Warning: contains nuts."
(talk about a news flash)
On an American Airlines packet of nuts:
"Instructions: Open packet, eat nuts."
(Step 3: maybe, uh . . . fly Delta?)
On a Swedish chain saw:
"Do not attempt to stop chain with your hands."
(Oh my . . . was there a lot of that happening?)
On a can of insect spray:
Kills all kinds of insects! Warning: This spray is harmful to bees.
On a different brand of insect spray:
Kills flies, wasps, mosquitoes, and other flying insects. Not tested on animals.
On the CycleAware helmet-mounted mirror:
Remember: Objects in the mirror are actually behind you.
On a car lock which loops around both the clutch pedal and the steering wheel:
Warning - Remove lock before driving.
On a packet of juggling balls:
This product contains granules under three millimeters.
Not suitable for children under fourteen years in Europe or eight years in the USA.
Answer questions immediately without thinking
Question 1: You are running a race. You overtake the second person. What position are you in?
Answer 1: If your answer was 'first place' you are wrong. If you overtake the second person, you take his place and are now in second place.
Question 2: If you overtake the last person, what position are you in?
Answer 2: If you said second to last you are wrong. You can't overtake the last person because if they are last no one is behind them.
Question 3: Do this quickly in your head only--no pencil and paper or calculator.
Take 1000 and add 40 to it. Now add another 1000. Now add 30. Add another 1000. Now add 20. Now add another 1000. Now add 10. What is the total?
Answer 3: If you got 5000 that is wrong. The answer is 4100--you can check it with a calculator.
Question 4: Mary's father has five daughters: Nana, Nene, Nini, Nono. What is the name of the fifth daughter?
Answer 4: Did you answer Nunu? No, of course not. Her name is Mary!
Question 5: A mute person was in a store looking for a toothbrush. By imitating the action of brushing his teeth he was able to indicate what he wanted. Later a blind man was searching for sunglasses. How did he indicate what he wanted?
back to top of page
Answer 5: He just opened his mouth and asked . . . it's really very simple.