Common Sense: Interrupting My Freedom Since 1987

“A peacefulness follows any decision, even the wrong one,” said Rita Mae Brown. To which respond, “False. Unless peacefulness is a code word for snot rags, tires of belly fat, and Wrinkly Old Baggy Face Syndrome.” Oh, and here’s some explanation.

A California woman recently sued the manufacturers of Olay Regenerist anti-aging products claiming the company boasted “ill-gotten gains” and consisted of “snake-oil salesmen”. That’s some legal mumbo-jumbo for “I spent my tax refund on serum instead of groceries. It didn’t fix my face, and I am about starving!”.  This court case surprises me for a number of reasons, namely that I was almost positive snake-oil was the same thing as Botox and that the American customer can be so foolish. We spend our money with the quiet knowledge that there is no miracle product and the desperate hope that (despite all science and reason) we will rub some lotion on our jiggly necks and wake up looking three feet taller, 100 pounds thinner, and with the fine, young skin of an infant. It worked for the chick on the commercial, right?

Another West Coast hula hoop took frivolous law suits to a whole new level of ridiculous. A California woman (not the droopy jowls chick, but maybe her cousin?) stuck it to McDonald’s fast food corporation for making her kids fat. As the children’s parent, she felt a responsibility to put those Big Mac shuffling villains in their place. As the children’s parent, she was upset- nay! outraged!- that McDonald’s put toys for kids in the Happy Meals…for kids. This made the children beg for the toys. Why not just go ahead and slip some Crack in the poor tots’ juice boxes, McJerks? As the children’s parent, she was forced to give her kids what they so desperately wanted, a 5-cent plastic spy watch and juvenile diabetes. As the fuming mother (who I hope is a fitness instructor for irony’s sake) puts it McDonald’s is “getting into my kids’ heads without my permission and actually changing what my kids want to eat”. It’s gloriously salty child abuse is what it is. When asked why she didn’t just tell her kids no or maybe even not load, safety buckle, and drive her children to McWhereHealthyGoesToDie, the plaintiff nearly choked on her super-sized chocolate McShake. She agreed to settle quietly out of court. The reported settlement consisted of a lifetime supply of Quarter Pounders, McNuggets, and an assortment of dipping sauces.

Get outta my brain! Wait. Are those diet fries?

All of this is to say that people are dumb. Also, I am people. That’s why I’m wearing my sternest mom scowl, packing a drowsy toddler in my car, and high-tailing it to the local Chuck E. Cheese.

Plaintiff, Complaintiffing: “We came to this here establishment because your commercial said this is where my kid could be a kid. Also it was raining and the kid was getting cabin-fever-ish and trying to expend energy by running through walls. I digress. I’m here to sue your pants off”.

15-year-old Employee: “Um? So y’all like want to play? We’ve got a forty coins for four bucks promo going on. Or not. Whatever.”

Still Complaintiffing: “No. I need you to tell me what  form I need to fill out to sue you…and that stupid mascot mouse… and your boss… and your mother. Forty for four bucks, huh? That is really a good deal. Wait. No! Suing. You.”

15-year-old-Employee’s 16-year-old Boss: “So, there’s a problem, ma’am? Ma’am? Ma’am! You can’t rig the machines to accept pennies. That’s in the company handbook. Weren’t you here to sue us?”

Plaintiff, breaking Skee Ball records and snatching up dem tickets: “Crap. Yes. I came here because my kid wanted to be a kid and instead he got a funky nose & throat funk, gave me the funky nose & throat funk, and ruined our lives. So our rainy day outing cost me $50 worth of vapor rub and three days of playing outside in the now sunny weather. This is America! Injustice! Is that the new Guitar Hero? Oh snap! I can slay some Zepplin. Wait. Injustice! “

Chuck E. Cheese, who stumbled in late for his shift smelling a little like whiskey: “Chick. On any given day about a million kids rub their nasty kid hands on every square inch of this place. I once saw a four-year-old lick every coin slot to every game. His big brother barfed pizza and grape soda somewhere around where you’re standing now, I take a bath in bleach every night, and I get paid like a sweatshop orphan to dress like a rodent in a baseball cap. You actually paid to come here. If dumb were a crime…”

I wouldn’t hear the rest of what he had to say. The 12-year-old Corporate Manager would waddle over, tell Chuck to go home until he was sober, and give me a free bag of tokens and complimentary glow-in-the-dark bouncy balls from the prize counter just to shut up already. Obviously I would oblige. Those balls would easily cost a whopping 1,300 points, and I have some unfinished business with the tricky Whack-A-Mole who cheated me out of victory just a few short days ago.

…Where a kid can be dunked in a vat of Flu and Filth.

It seems that the kiddy entertainment megaplex will not be changing its slogan any time soon. It also seems that logic would’ve told me to take one look at those snot-splattered, techni-colored games and run to the sanitized sanctuary known as Anywhere Else On Earth. We often know a decision is foolish, but make a choice in hopes that reason will stop being so reasonable. I got pregnant and was shocked, terrified, and ready to punch the authors of What To Expect When You’re Expecting when the kid came out of my actual nether regions. Sure, I skipped a few chapters, but the chapter I did read was about packing extra slippers in your hospital bag. I could’ve used the heads up (or heads down… so things don’t get too breech-y). It’s hard not to get angry  when a coffee cup only mildly states “CONTENTS HOT”. You take a swig and all skin from your inner and outer face is burned to ash. Nowhere on that dinky cup did anyone think to warn “CONTENTS SUPER HOT  (AS IN HOT ENOUGH TO MELT YOUR TONGUE INTO YOUR  GUMS)”.  I once tripped on a slick staircase because I was texting while walking, but mostly because someone neglected to put the yellow CUIDADO sign in my way. I called to complain and my realtor had the nerve to tell me that no one is legally responsible for warning me when the stairs to my own house are wet with nature’s rain. Classic. Blame the victim. 

      This is America, people! This is the land of hopes and dreams threatened daily when the terrorist known as Common Sense swoops in to interrupt our freedom. With a snot-clogged voice and pockets full of tickets I can’t wait to cash in at that grubby prize case,  I preach to thy countrymen: Go forth and do dumb (while knowing better)!

But what about dropping my phone in that coffee?

You gotta fight for your right to be foolish.

When have you blamed The Man (or Mouse, as it were) for something you should’ve seen coming?

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40 thoughts on “Common Sense: Interrupting My Freedom Since 1987

    • I, too, would like to understand why “Common Sense” is named as it is, given that it’s so very uncommon. Oy.

      As for your parting question, Tori? I’m sure there have been more recent examples, but I’m going with “my entire teenagehood” on this one!

      • Hahaha. Oh, to be a teen again. I think I told my mom she “ruined my life!” about 300 times. Her “stupid genes” gave me chin acne, so naturally everything was her fault :)

    • Oh! You probably come into contact with more idiots per minute than most of us do in our lifetime. I sense a book concept coming on. A whole book devoted to the dumby dumb dumbness you’ve had to witness on campus!

      • Wow…enough free time and I probably could produce whole multi-volume sets. They would look magnificent and coffee tables!

      • Seriously. If you need to post anonymously for job security, drop those hilarious stories off in my inbox as guest posts… which I guess aren’t so anonymous now that I’ve written this comment :)

    • Oh, but he will. I just know it. I’m convinced that place is so filthy that all the germs join to form the collective SUPERGERM. There is no bleach wipe, no handsanitizer or oxygen mask that can conquer it!

  1. I’m suing the U-Haul company for not warning me that the end table could fall from the top of the load and hit me in the ear, giving me what appears to be Frankenstein’s ear. Even if I’m the one who unloaded, I’m still the victim, right?

    • Gosh darn right, you’re the victim! I think I’ll add a suit against the weather for making me sweat, the microwave for preventing me from learning how to cook, and this blog for taking up my time and leaving my house a wreck :)

  2. I firmly refuse to eat In A restaurant who’s mascot is a rodent…. I mean does anyone else find that just gross? Plus every time I go in to that place I instantly scope out the kiddy rapists and perverts believe me they are there! All I’m saying is be careful the flu and funk would be low on my list of worries! As for your question I frequently blame red lights for making me late to work!

    • Hahaha. I just now realized the disgusting rodent/restaurant relationship! I can say that next time we are stuck indoors on a rainy day, the kid will have to settle for coloring books. Not worth the funk!

  3. I always wonder how plaintiffs come up with some of these ideas. And why the heck do attorneys take the
    cases.

    • It really makes me a little embarrassed to be a human. I found SO many unbelievable cases while searching for examples for this post. Either I’m too respectable to sue someone for my own problems, or I’m failing to see the genius in making money for not doing anything!

    • Hahaha. I’m still trying to figure that one out. I’m clinging to the hope that I can sue the company that manufactures our scale. Surely the thing is malfunctioning :)

  4. So many things cracked me up about this post. I laughed at your commentary about the Olay and McDonald’s suits (“a 5-cent plastic spy watch and juvenile diabetes” – love it!)

    If I could ditch my conscience and sue for my own stupidity, I’d be rich.

    All of the kiddie places gross me out with the germs (kids never went in those ball pits – I imagined dead bodies settled in the bottom of those pens. I know, I’m messed up.

    Sorry you braved the germland (aka Chuck-E-Cheese) and lost :(

    • Don’t feel sorry for me. That’s the whole point! I knew with 100% certainty how nasty that place was and decided to chance it for play time’s sake. Clearly it was a risk without reward! It’s something along the lines of my eating pizza and then holding a serious grudge against my scale the next day: “Darn thing’s broke! Why can’t you just tell me 100, jerk?”.

  5. To jump on the bandwagon…common sense isn’t so common anymore. :)

    I love your satirical take on stupid people. I read an ecard the other day (then printed and posted on my office wall…I’m hoping to have it blown up poster size):
    “I wouldn’t need to manage my anger if people could learn to manage their stupidity.”

    Great post! Sorry you guys have the funk. Damn mouse! It’s all his fault!

    • I love when terms are so ironic. Common sense is a rarity. I was half amused and half horrified when I searched for silly lawsuits to use for the post. From the man who was mad that iPhone’s Siri didn’t clean his house to the lady who also sued McDonalds (this time claiming that she was fired and thus forced into prostitution), I wanted to laugh at people’s excuses to blame everyone else for their dirty house or dirtier job. Then I suddenly wanted to figure out how to not be a part of the human race anymore. If human crazy is contagious, I’d rather be a bird.

  6. Ha! Brilliant. Your “McJerks” really got me giggling, as did the picture(s) of your son at the doctor’s office! The sad thing is it sounds like that McPlantiff is actually going to get some money out of this with the outside settlement?? People make fun of me because I’m always shouting, “Squeaky effin’ wheel! It’s always the squeaky effin’ wheel!” Because I usually never complain, even when I probably should!

    • I’m still shocked that the McFat Suit is a real thing. Makes me want to seriously reconsider suing Weight Watchers. I signed up and lost nothing. NOTHING! Sure, I disregarded the daily health tips, overall points system, and everything else, but still. Signing up should’ve lost me at least 5 pounds :)

  7. Wow – that McSuer got more than one packet of sauce in her settlement? That’s a great deal cuz they charge, like, 75 cents apiece for those.

  8. Over-the-counter anti-aging gimmicks. REALLY!?
    Not hard-core enough for this guy.
    “Yes, I would like a large No. one…
    with extra Big Mac Sauce…
    and could you load that up into a syringe, please? Thanks.” :)

  9. Speaking of stupid law suits, my sister was sued for $150K when she was 13 years old for a grass fight in the school yard two years earlier. The plaintiff (another 13-year old kid) had shoved wet grass down my sister’s shirt and slipped/fell when he was trying to stuff as much lawn into my sister’s top as he possibly could. Then he sued HER (and the school, and the grass cutting company, and the nearby chain link fence company) for sustaining headaches, scrapes, and cuts. Stupid school board actually settled this out of court! FOR REAL!

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