You Can’t Fix Stupid!
I am going to be 55 years old tomorrow…..some would wonder how I survived so long, others appreciate the path I choose to travel to get here. I am blessed with some of the brightest, most interesting and talented individuals in my professional and personal life that a person could possibly imagine. I am also cursed with the presence of some at the opposite end of the spectrum. Anyone that knows me well will instantly agree that I don’t do well with dimwitted, unmotivated neanderthal imbeciles…I learned well from growing in an environment where two Type A+ Parents created a textbook example “Negative Attention Re-Enforcement” environment.Negative reinforcement does NOT mean punishment, it isn’t that simple. We will come back to the proper definition of negative reinforcement in a moment.
I had client who was a renowned Addiction Psychiatrist that used to tell me that those who we hopelessly stupid, dim-witted and otherwise projected all of the attributes of profound mental retardation [in moments of frustration, I tend to refer to them as “window lickers”…for which I regularly receive admonition from the “Political Correctness Police” that these people “are a gift”. They were placed in my life and on my payroll to teach me patience..and I can report that their efforts have failed miserably.
Permit me to illustrate….yesterday evening I found a filtered message in my Facebook messages from a high school classmate that I have had absolutely no recollection of contact with over the past 35+ years, and I barely had any interaction with even in high school…they were nobody then and in my world continue to be nobody today. They are clearly bitter and seek to be fixated on creating conflict…here is our exchange [her original post was a month ago, I responded last night, they made a final comment and blocked my ability to respond.
When I re-read the exchange, I get annoyed with myself for missing out on the opportunity to tell her that I will always think of her as a small-minded mental midget and ignorant bimbo that would fail the entrance exam for Misericordia, which happens to be a wonderful facility that does exceptional work in caring for developmentally disabled adults….alternatively, I could have dropped a “C-bomb”. However, that gets back to the negative reinforcement I mentioned before.The following is from an article that finally gave me some insight into what was going on. Here goes.
The bottom line being…..You Can’t Fix Stupid!……everyone isn’t a winner, and life and business is competitive, and you do disservice to individuals that don’t have the requisite mental horsepower by feeding them a line of bullshit that they have potential and everyone can succeed at anything they try.
I am reminded of two thoughts on the topic.
- A children’s book I will write some day entitled “All the Toys That Rich Kids Have That You Never Will” and
- My younger brother’s brilliant observation “You can’t teach a cat to play chess”.
Perhaps I will acquire a tiny shard of patience one day in the future, but at least I fully acknowledge that I will only get there kicking and screaming the entire way. Perhaps this video will illustrate my point:
Did you figure out the point of the video?? …..THERE IS NO POINT..SOME PEOPLE NO MATTER HOW WELL INTENTIONED, HOW MOTIVATED, OR WORTHY OF SAINTHOOD ARE DESTINED TO FAIL..THEY ARE NOT WINNERS AND NEVER WILL BE.
You can’t save the world, invest the time and effort where there is at least a realistic possibility of success. I think I should stop now.