The Death of Mr. Sense

Discussion in 'The Observation Bar' started by Andykev, Mar 15, 2005.

  1. Andykev

    Andykev I'll Lock Up Bartender

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    Obituary for Mr. Sense

    Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Mr. Common Sense.
    Mr. Sense had been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old
    he was since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red
    tape. He will be remembered as having cultivated such value lessons as
    knowing when to come in out of the rain, why the early bird gets the
    worm and that life isn't always fair. Common Sense lived by simple,
    sound financial policies (don't spend more than you earn) and reliable
    parenting strategies (adults, not kids, are in charge). His health began
    to rapidly deteriorate when well intentioned but overbearing regulations
    were set in place. - Reports of a six-year-old boy charged with sexual
    harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for
    using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an
    unruly student, only worsened his condition. Mr. Sense declined even
    further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer
    aspirin to a student; but, could not inform the parents when a student
    became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion. Finally, Common Sense
    lost the will to live as the Ten Commandments became contraband;
    churches became businesses; and criminals received better treatment
    than their victims. Common Sense finally gave up the ghost after a woman
    failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot, she spilled a
    bit in her lap, and was awarded a huge settlement. Common Sense was
    preceded in death by his parents, Truth and Trust, his wife, Discretion;
    his daughter, Responsibility; and his son, Reason. He is survived by two
    stepbrothers; My Rights and Ima Whiner. Not many attended his funeral
    because so few realized he was gone.
     
  2. Michaelson

    Michaelson One Too Many

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    Sad to say, this MUST be an old obituary. :cry: Regards. Michaelson
     
  3. gandydancer

    gandydancer Familiar Face

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    Location:
    Blue Ridge Mountains of NC
    Yep! If you watch the media, those sensation mongers, you will believe that.

    I am 61 and can tell you from personal experience that the good old days, weren't. I suspect the good old days my grandparents longed for, weren't either.

    I was reading an old Zane Grey novel the other day. It was set in the 1920's. He rather humorously had the heroine reading a magazine article that told how the young these days are either a worthless, immoral, bunch of losers (their fault); or poor misunderstood, improperly educated, poorly trained, kids (their parents fault). It was quite amusing because I had heard the same thing in the 1950's, 1960's, 1970's and 1980's. About then Common Sense and I became friends and I stopped reading all that stuff.

    Everyone thinks there is some kind of conspiracy and the "Golden Age" was just before they were born. It seems to be a part of human nature. The simple fact is that in general the world is a better place than it ever was.

    People are people and don't change much there was just as much if not more hate, nastiness, unkindness, stupidity, cupidity, dishonesty, etc, etc in the old days as there are now. Maybe unfortunately, we have much better communications, so we hear about it while it is still emotionally hot, and it seems like it there is more of it because we are informed about a much wider area that ever before. I mean if you heard about some stupidity that happened on the other coast in the old days it probably happened last month, now you hear about it on the satellite news almost before those involved do.

    I am on Social Security Disability. It is not quite enough to pay my expenses so I receive some assistance. So I must be one of those welfare fraud people. Yeh, like I would go through all that trouble for $27 in Food Stamps, and a bit of help with my rent if I could avoid it. (Interestingly if it wasn't for a couple of (most likely) system beaters telling me what I could get and how to demand it, I probably would still be living on the streets.) Anyway, the point is none of that was available in your "Golden Age". The wonderful world in your old movies was pure escapism from the very real miseries the guy on the street was dealing with. No such world existed unless you were very rich.

    They just don't make things like they used to. If you bought a new Model A Ford in 1930 it was worn out after about 40,000 miles. My Dad's 1955 Buick went about 100,000 miles. I expect my junkily build 1994 S-10 Blazer will only last 250,000 miles or so. So you are right they don't build them like they used to.

    No, my buddy, Common Sense, isn't dead, people just ignore him mostly. Just like they ignore me. We are just old farts.
     
  4. Michaelson

    Michaelson One Too Many

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    I believe it's an expedential situation. The smarter or more intelligent kids become, the less 'horse sense' they seem to have, or use. 'Common sense' should tell you that if you perform a drive by shooting, when caught, you will be held responsible for your actions, but it happens again and again, and when the kids are questioned, they always say " I didn't know somebody could get hurt!" Well, duh!
    So, I still go along with what was said in the statement that common sense is essentially dead, as compared to the 'old days', as when something really stupid occurs, as obvious as the result will be, somehow the injuried party 'didn't realize it could end up that way!"

    I mean, I don't recall the 'Darwin Awards' being awarded in the 'Golden Era'. ;)

    Regards. Michaelson
     
  5. Mycroft

    Mycroft One Too Many

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    Yea, I agree with you Andykev. Very good points. Though there is still a chance for change for the better, you agree?
     
  6. Slicksuit

    Slicksuit One of the Regulars

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    Location:
    Suburban Detroit, Michigan
    Very well said, Gandydancer! I think there are folks present in every age with differing degrees of common sense. Media is just faster and more pervasive than it was back then. If you did an informal survey of the citizens of any given small town back in "The Golden Era", I bet you'll hear all sorts of stories of idiocity. It's all perception.

    I think I read a story a few years back regarding the youth of this generation. If one looks at the statistics, as a whole, teenagers aren't any more unruly than they were 20, 50, or 100 years ago. But it is the exceptional that is the most interesting, and memorable. Watch the local evening news tonight, and one gets the impression that there is nothing in life but accidents, death, and controversy. We don't hear about all the good things that happen in life with the same frequency.

    There is also the tendency for people to wax nostalgic about the 'good old days', and believe that their generation was the most superior. Hell, I even sometimes believe that my life was more enjoyable 5 years ago. But we have to realize that the good times are NOW. Enjoy your family and friends while they (and you) are around. Yesterday is a distant memory, and the future is uncertain. Now is the time for making a difference.
     
  7. Brad A. Cox

    Brad A. Cox Familiar Face

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    Upland,IN.
    I know that the choo-choo of time never seems to slow down or stop. I am only 33 yrs. old and even I have notice that things seemed better only just yesterday. The moment you are born you start dying. Is our world doing the same? Things are changing so fast now and it is easier to destroy this world of ours. History seems to repeat itself with a nasty vengence on the generation that forgets the wrongs of the past. Then the same mistakes are made again. History must be remembered and studied by our youth or we will all die.
     
  8. Ken

    Ken A-List Customer

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    Scotland, UK
    Well here is my perspective as someone who went through the school system recently in Britian.

    When I entered the 'big' school (12 - 18 year olds) at age 14, to me prefects were there to be obeyed, they were seimi Gods and we did what they were told. Same applied with most teachers although they held the status of fully fledged deities. this was pretty much widespread general thought with only a few exceptions.

    However by the time I made it through the system and became a prefect myself things had changed drastically - lack of teacher control in classes was a big problem. I swear I even heard stories of pupils threatening teachers with Human rights legislation (apparantly its wrong to embarass someone in front of others as it qualifies as inhuman and degrading treatment) and I saw many school clubs ans societies fall apart for all kinds of 'legal' reasons.

    And if I thought I would command the same respect I once reserved for prefects I couldn't have been more wrong. No longer were prefects respected, feared or even acknowledged - to the kids we were just another authority figure to rebel against. The newer generation of 12 -14 year olds were far cheekier, disrespectful and out of control than we ever were at that age - there was victimisation of teachers, swearing at teachers and kids simply walking out of teachers' classes and nothing that could be done about it. Any threat issued by a teacher was ignored because the kid knew it couldn't be physical in any way and so was simply ignored.

    Sad times indeed. I sometimes wonder what it must be like now sicne that was the situation 4 years ago. I am sure these things go in cycles though and out of necessity we will have to revert to the stricter kind of regime we used to have for maintaining discipline.

    Ken
     
  9. ITG

    ITG Call Me a Cab

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    Ken, pardon my American ignorance but is a "prefect" a British word for principal of a school?
     
  10. Ken

    Ken A-List Customer

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    In theory it is an older student who is given some authority and helps to control the younger students.

    Ken
     
  11. gandydancer

    gandydancer Familiar Face

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    Hall monitor (grin).
     
  12. IndianaGuybrush

    IndianaGuybrush One of the Regulars

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    Misconception that everything is worse today is due mainly to two factors: One is a sensationalistic national media, and the second is a psychological phenomenon known as the 'availability heuristic' . Simply put, the availibility heuristic states that someone exposed to numerous reports of things happening (rape, theft, murder, etc) will believe that they happen with a frequency far greater than the frequency at which they actually occur (well duh). Plane crashes are a great example. They happen so infrequently, but when they do happen they are SO well covered and reported on, that many people are irrationally afraid of flying.

    The truth is this stuff isn't happening any more often than it used to, in fact, in NY at least, crime is following a downward trend and has been for over a decade. The problem is everyone today is so much better "informed." With the advent of television media, network ratings battles, and 500+ satellite/cable TV, you have 30+ news shows in the same time slot all battling for a fixed pool of viewers. This encourages the news programs to get more and more sensationalistic in order to attract a larger audience. At any given point your average Joe Schmoe would be more likely to stop channel surfing after hearing that a 4 year-old brought a gun to class that he would be after hearing that the president signed a new peace treaty. Sad but true.
     
  13. Michaelson

    Michaelson One Too Many

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    That's why I just watch the History Channel and the Food Channel now adays. :rolleyes: ;) Regards. Michaelson
     
  14. Ken

    Ken A-List Customer

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    Shouldn't that be the Coffee ChanelTM ? Ken
     
  15. Michaelson

    Michaelson One Too Many

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    Tennessee
    No....the Food Channel. The CoffeeChannel is on the higher channels, and I can't get it. ;) Regards! Michaelson
     
  16. Slicksuit

    Slicksuit One of the Regulars

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    Now, if ever there was evidence of the 'Death of Common Sense', I nominate the recent congressional intervention in the Terri Shiavo case. :rolleyes:
     
  17. Richard

    Richard Familiar Face

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    72
    hot coffee

    "Common Sense finally gave up the ghost after a woman
    failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot, she spilled a
    bit in her lap, and was awarded a huge settlement."

    It wasn't just hot, it was MOLTEN HOT. mcdonalds intentionally made it super duper hot, hotter than coffee you've ever dealt with. It was a calculated risk, since most people didn't drink their to-go coffee a while, and it would generally cool down to regular hot. She didn't spill a little bit, she was an elderly woman who suffered serious burns to her labia. She knew it was hot, bt she didn't know it was MOLTEN HOT. This is a wacky situation, but busineses all over the place are imposing all kinds of risks on you, some you know about some you don't. You may be getting poisoned by mercury by some distant factory right now; a cancer might very well be brewing in your bones. Is it common sense to try to keep businesses from imposing unreaosnable risks on you? Should they pay when harm comes your way? I'm not saying Mcdonalds should int he above case, but it's not so simple. If it were, the jury wouldn't ahve found in her favor. Common sense isn't dying; but the world is getting more complex. dal with it, my friend.
     
  18. BellyTank

    BellyTank I'll Lock Up

    How can it be hotter than boiling? It wouldn't have been near that hot by the time she had it in her lap-
    People generally complain that their coffee isn't hot enough.
    This was a stupid situation and common sense did NOT prevail-
    I hate McDonalds but I hate stupidity more-

    B
    T
     
  19. IndianaGuybrush

    IndianaGuybrush One of the Regulars

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    BTs right, you can't heat a liquid past it's equilibrium boiling point without some serious pressure, or special chemicals. The coffee was about as hot as a cup of freshly brewed tea. 100 degrees celsius is plenty hot enought to give somebody third degree burns (think about it, it's what you cook your food in) and in all likelihood the coffee was only a few degrees below that. But think about it. What happened was an accident. It was a combination of unlucky circumstances that ended with an old woman getting burned. I feel very badly for the woman, but I don't understand this 'somebody has to pay' mentality. It wasn't a particularly preventable accident on McDonalds's part. If the old lady had kept the hot beverage away from her lap she wouldn't have received the injuries she did. In the words of (I think) Dennis Leary "Life sucks, wear a helmet"
     

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