things that make you sound stupid

13 Things I Won’t Say

13. I will not call a small cup of coffee a “tall” cup of coffee.

12. I will not call a medium sized cup of coffee a “vente.”

11. Unless I’m in Italy or a Spanish speaking country I will not call a large cup of coffee a “grande.” 

The reason Starbucks uses Orwellian double speak for its coffee sizes is because some marketing executives held a meeting to figure out how to manipulate people into paying $5+ for 10 cents of liquid, and they decided it would help to change the names of the sizes to sound more hip. Not that I would buy coffee at Starbucks anyway, but if I did I would refuse to act like a mindless consumer whore and give into their hollow marketing ploy. I certainly wouldn’t celebrate it.

10. I will not say “bless you” when you sneeze.

That custom started because the Romans thought your soul escaped your body when you sneezed. At some point the phrase was stolen by the mythology-worshiping Christians who replaced the mythology-worshiping Romans and everyone started saying it because it just seemed nice. In reality it’s ultimately pointless. As polite a gesture as it may be, it still reveals one’s unquestioning complicity in holding onto obsolete customs. So if you tell me “bless you” when I sneeze I have to wonder what other dumb (and possibly sinister) customs you’re wasting your life with because your actions are defined by mimicking other unquestioning automatons. You may argue to your death that it’s not a big deal, but point in fact, the world would be a smarter place if we stopped saying, “bless you” when people sneeze.

9. I will not address someone with a Ph.D. as “Doctor so and so.” 

People with a Ph.D. will respond to this by saying, “I didn’t go to school for 8 years for nothing.” Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s cool that you went to school for 8 years, and you probably know a few things that I don’t, but that doesn’t obligate me to you in any way. I will not give you a mental hand job, and if you were really so smart you wouldn’t ask me to….since there’s no logical reason to.

8. I will not address a judge as “your honor.” 

I don’t care what job you have. That doesn’t automatically make you more honorable than me. For all I know you may be a terrible person, and even if I do respect you because I know you personally, I still find no logical reason to place you above me.

7. I will not address anyone as “sir or ma’am” in a way that signifies their authority over me.

I won’t address my elders, my boss, a military officer, a police officer, a judge, a politician or anyone else with a “higher” title than me as “sir” or “ma’am,” because we were born equals. We’ll spend our lives as equals, and we’ll die as equals. If reason were a religion it would be sacrilegious to address my equals with a higher title than me. I understand that many people say (and believe) that we call our equals “sir and ma’am” out of respect…but it’s funny how the people who tell us to subjugate ourselves “out of respect” are usually in the business of controlling us.

6. I will not call or refer to a priest “father.” 

Even when I was a Christian in high school I understood that Jesus called himself “the son of man” as a sign of humility and taught that “the lowest among you is the greatest.” He praised a girl who washed his feet with her hair and condemned the religious leaders of the day for putting on airs. So a Christian calling another Christian (who is not their biological father) “father” is sacrilegious.

Now that I’ve grown up and understand that Christianity is mythology and everyone is equal, the idea of calling a priest “father” is even more repulsive.

5. I will not call or refer to the Dali Lama “His Holiness.”

He’s not holy. He’s a pissing, shitting, aging, ordinary human like the rest of us. The only things extraordinary about him are how flabby his arms are from never having to lift his silver spoon to his mouth himself in his life and what an unconscionable liar and/or megalomaniac he is for pretending to be a reincarnated ubber man. I don’t care how polite he is or how resolutely he stands for peace and freedom (as if nobody else in the world felt that way). If anyone else expected to be called “His Holiness” for that we would be calling a mental institute to take them to a padded room.

4. I will not call America a democracy.

It’s not. It’s a republic. This isn’t stretching the truth. It’s not meant to be disrespectful. Look it up. Would you call Communist China a democracy? No. You wouldn’t, because it’s not. So why would you call America a democracy when it’s a republic? The only explanation is that you don’t know what a democracy or a republic is. When you call America a democracy you sound stupid, and it makes smart people wonder how many more basic facts you don’t understand about the world around you.

3. I will not say or type “LOL” in conversation.

If you can’t see how using “LOL” in conversation makes you look dumb then you’re probably too dumb to understand the reasons even if they were spelled out for you.

2. I will not pledge allegience to any flag. 

Flags aren’t more important than humans, and any virtuous ideals that flags supposedly represent are virtuous because they empower people. When people subjugate themselves to a flag they undermine those values. Not pledging allegiance to a flag does more to promote truth, justice, freedom and equality than bending the knee to an inanimate object that was pushed on you by the leaders of the country you were arbitrarily born into. I will not disrespect my brothers and sisters in other countries by letting a flag or the manipulative practices of politicians divide us.

1. I will not refer to September 11th, 2001 as “9/11.”

“9/11″ is a hip media catch phrase. It’s a pop culture buzz word. September 11th, 2001 wasn’t hip. It wasn’t cool. It was a tragedy, and reducing that tragedy to the same level of vocabulary as “LOL” is a disgraceful insult to those who died.