"Twenty-Five Things It Took Me Over
50 Years To Learn" by Dave Barry
- The badness of a movie is directly proportional to the number of helicopters in it.
- You will never find anybody who can give you a clear and compelling reason why we observe daylight-saving time.
- People who feel the need to tell you that they have an excellent sense of humor are telling you that they have no sense of humor.
- The most valuable function performed by the federal government is entertainment.
- You should never say anything to a woman that even remotely suggests you think she’s pregnant unless you can see an actual baby emerging from her at that moment.
- A penny saved is worthless.
- They can hold all the peace talks they want, but there will never be peace in the Middle East. Billions of years from now, when Earth is hurtling toward the Sun and there is nothing left alive on the planet except a few microorganisms, the microorganisms living in the Middle East will be bitter enemies.
- The most powerful force in the universe is gossip.
- The one thing that unites all human beings, regardless of age, gender, religion, economic status, or ethnic background, is that, deep down inside, we all believe that we are above-average drivers.
- There comes a time when you should stop expecting other people to make a big deal about your birthday. That time is age 11.
- There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
- People who want to share their religious views with you almost never want you to share yours with them.
- There apparently exists, somewhere in Los Angeles, a computer that generates concepts for television sitcoms. When TV executives need a new concept, they turn on this computer; after sorting through millions of possible plot premises, it spits out, "THREE QUIRKY BUT ATTRACTIVE YOUNG PEOPLE LIVING IN AN APARTMENT," and the executives turn this concept into a show. The next time they need an idea, the computer spits out, "SIX QUIRKY BUT ATTRACTIVE YOUNG PEOPLE LIVING IN AN APARTMENT." Then the next time, it spits out, "FOUR QUIRKY BUT ATTRACTIVE YOUNG PEOPLE LIVING IN AN APARTMENT." And so on. We need to locate this computer and destroy it with hammers.
- Nobody is normal.
- At least once per year, some group of scientists will become very excited and announce that:
- The universe is even bigger than they thought!
- There are even more subatomic particles than they thought!
- Whatever they announced last year about global warming is wrong.
- If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be "meetings."
- The main accomplishment of almost all organized protests is to annoy people who are not in them.
- The value of advertising is that it tells you the exact opposite of what the advertiser actually thinks. For example:
- If the advertisement says "This is not your father’s Oldsmobile," the advertiser is desperately concerned that this Oldsmobile, like all other Oldsmobiles, appeals primarily to old farts like your father.
- If Coke and Pepsi spend billions of dollars to convince you that there are significant differences between these two products, both companies realize that Pepsi and Coke are virtually identical.
- If the advertisement strongly suggests that Nike shoes enable athletes to perform amazing feats, Nike wants you to disregard the fact that shoe brand is unrelated to athletic ability.
- If Budweiser runs an elaborate advertising campaign stressing the critical importance of a beer’s "born-on" date, Budweiser knows this factor has virtually nothing to do with how good a beer tastes.
- If there really is a God who created the entire universe with all of its glories, and He decides to deliver a message to humanity, He will not use, as His messenger, a person on cable TV with a bad hairstyle.
- You should not confuse your career with your life.
- A person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person.
- No matter what happens, somebody will find a way to take it too seriously.
- When trouble arises and things look bad, there is always one individual who perceives a solution and is willing to take command. Very often, that individual is crazy.
- Your friends love you anyway.
- Nobody cares if you can’t dance well. Just get up and dance.
Originally published in Dave Barry’s 1999 book, Dave Barry Turns 50
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