Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Sense that should be more common

There are a lot of things that we assume everyone knows. 2+2=4, the capital of the US is Washington DC, 1 cup of liquid is 8ozs, etc. If I've already lost you, time to do a little studying. But there are plenty of other little lessons you learn not from school but from life itself. Recently, I've noticed that some people seem to have missed out on these things.

For instance, walking in to work the other day, I saw a girl who had not cut the stitch that held the kick pleat of her skirt together. For those who are unaware, stores stitch up kick pleats so that they will fold more neatly and they won't be ripped when people try the skirts on. They also stitch up the pockets on jackets often, to keep people from putting anything gross (like a tissue or gum) inside of them. These are threads that are meant to be cut when you buy the garment and take it home. Don't worry: the rest of the piece of clothing will not unravel when you cut these threads.
Every year there are 4 months with 30 days and 7 months with 31 days. The only month that changes is February, which is usually 28 days, but every four years, is 29.
George Washington's white horse was in fact white.

There are 50 states in the USA, and 48 are contiguous. This does not mean that if you were born in one of the other 2, you are not a US citizen (ahem, tea-baggers).

On an airplane, you are supposed to turn off your cell phone, or at least put it in "airplane mode." This is not so much to prevent equipment malfunctions and keep the plane from crashing as it is to prevent your fellow passengers from using the phone to beat you to death for talking loudly about personal matters in a confined space. The same can be applied to elevators, buses, and trains. You don't have to turn your phone off, just let it go to voicemail, or quickly explain that you will call the person back when you are alone. The moral of this one is simple: Don't be a dick.

Not all firemen are attractive. Not all military men are gentlemen. Equally, not all flight attendants are attractive and not all librarians are lady-like.

If someone comes up to you on the street or in a lobby and asks if you want to take a Stress Test, the answer is no. This is code for being inducted into Scientology. (click link for South Park hilarity)

When buying a gift, you are meant to think of what the recipient wants, not what you would want if you were them, because you are not them. Don't think, if I were an 8 year old, I'd really want a pogo stick. It's 2011, 8 year olds don't even know what those are. There is no shame in A- asking someone what they want (or a close friend, significant other, etc), or B- using a gift guide. There are a lot out there: Amazon, gifts.com, plus lots of special interest ones and even more Holiday special ones. And if the gift is for a wedding, that is what the registry is for! Trust me (as someone who likes gifts but has never organized a wedding), people do spend time picking out what they want just so you won't have to. If you are a close friend and have something sentimental you know they will love, by all means go with your instincts. Most of the time, it's safest to stick to wish lists.

A Shirley Temple is alcohol-free. A Shirley Temple Black is not.

A greenhouse is made of glass, therefore is clear, not green.

Chuck Norris is a real person.

Contrary to popular belief, the sidewalk is not yours alone. You do have to leave space for other people to pass by you and your friends or significant other or dog. On a similar note, when your dog leaves something behind on the sidewalk, it is your responsibility to pick it up. No one wants to step in it because you think it's gross or you already used your baggy. This is what you signed up for when you got a dog in an urban area. (Also your responsibility: making sure the toilet flushes all the way after you use it).

The plural of cul de sac is culs de sac. Flammable and inflammable mean the same thing. And for the love of books, please learn the difference between there, their, and they're.

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