June 26, 2009

One of the Dumbest Things I've Ever Heard


For a long time, I thought the dumbest thing I had ever heard came from when I was working at my job testing vehicle emissions.

At the job, we had just changed to a new form of test two weeks before this story takes place. Before the test involved putting a metal wand in the car's tailpipe and a small bag on the hood that read the car's idle RPM. The test switched to a dynamometer, essentially a car treadmill where we drove the cars up to 55 miles an hour and had these large vacuum hoses attached onto the tailpipe. The change was significant.

Anyway, this man driving a van pulls into my testing lane, and as a courtesy we ask if they have had the test before, so they know what to expect because the noise and spectacle of the test can be a little disturbing, especially if you love your car. So, here's how the exchange went between me and this guy we'll call Gomer. And really it's more like the context, or the responses this guy gave me that makes it stick out in my mind.

Me: Have you had this test before?

Gome, the Van Driver: No.

Me: Oh, okay, let me enter your car's information into the computer and I'll be back to explain how this works.

[I walk back to the computer terminal, punch in the important car information so the system can test the car properly. I return to Gomer]

Me: So, you said you haven't had this test before?

Gomer, the Van Driver: I have, yeah. Yeah, I've done this.

Me: Great, so I need you to go ahead and step out of the car.

Gomer, the Van Driver: I have two vehicles.

[Confused] Me: Okay. So you've been here since we changed the test?

Gomer, the Van Driver: I use the van to pull the boat.

[Dumbfounded] Me: All right. Okay. Well, please step out of the car...

Typing that out, maybe "I use the van to pull the boat" isn't the most compelling idiotic thing to be said, but I kind of love it because how how strange it is. And while I don't get to use it much, I like to think of the "I use the van to pull the boat" whenever I hear something dumb or get involved in one of those moments where you have a person who just needs to tell you something, no matter what you ask them, like they have this bit of information, and they're gonna share it.

But, maybe I got a moment that trumps that. I overheard this person, with a heavy east coast accent, though I'm not exactly sure where this guy was from, and not doing any favors to that kind of Brooklyn-knucklehead kind of stereotype, the other day who said, and I'm not kidding:

"What is Montana? Is it a city or a state? State? Really? I don't know, I don't know, I never memorized the states. So it's a state not a city? What's it's state code? MT? No that's Maryland. You sure? MT is Montana? Okay."


Anyway, what about you? You have favorite dumb things that you've overheard from the mouths of the unwashed?

viva el mustache

1 comment:

Jorge said...

I can't remember it word for word, but I wrote it down somewhere. I was in the TA office (206A) and outside, in the hall way, during a class switch (so the hallways were full) I heard some girl talking over her cell phone about how she didn't want anyone to know that she might have caught an STD from some guy. I thought it was strange that she didn't want anyone to know, yet she was talking about it loud enough for me to hear over the busy hallway.