In This Episode: Whether you “need” a monkey (wait… what?!) or “want” something for nothing, scammers are eager to take your money from you. Here are a few stories of those who fell for it and (more importantly) how you can reduce your chances of being conned.
Today’s Randy’s Random Meme is My Take on recent headlines, like “Disregarding Health Warnings, Arizona Lawmakers Move Forward On Vaccine Exemptions For Kids” and “Texas Lawmaker Hays He’s Not Worried About Measles Outbreak Because of ‘Antibiotics’” and “Measles Returned To Costa Rica After Five Years By French Family Who Had Not Had Vaccinations” — which are all recent.
There has been a significant update in a story from this week’s issue (12 August 2018). Let’s start with my original story:
I have a little bit to say about a story this week, so let me start with that story — from the 26 November 2017 issue:
In recent reading, I’ve stumbled on a paper by Carlo M. Cipolla. An Italian, Cipolla taught economic history at the University of California at Berkeley, and proposed “The [Five] Basic Laws of Human Stupidity”:
Sometimes it’s fun to poke at obliviots — especially when they’re truly oblivious to their idiocy.
Nick in Arizona recently re-subscribed after an absence. He wrote:
Some Readers Seem to Want to top recent examples of “Stupid Reasons for Protest Unsubscribes”. This one’s hilarious: in Friday’s free edition, having no paid advertisers, I ran a house ad for my drone site, Drone Pilot Wings. I haven’t been doing much in the way of articles on that site lately, but several that I have done really push for pilots being more responsible with drones, vs. doing stupid things like getting in the way of airplanes trying to fight wildfires. There’s even an article category called “Pilot Error” to highlight such stories. Of course, the tiny ad doesn’t get into all that, it just points interested readers to the site to learn more.
Every Month, There’s a Tagline Challenge in the Premium edition — an extra story without a tag at the end, and readers can submit their best ending for the story. This month, the story was about a robbery that went bad at a drug store: the obliviot managed to defeat himself by pepper-spraying …himself.
MSgt USAF (retired) Joseph in Ohio inquires, “As a multi-decade reader I find readers’ comments almost as entertaining as the stories. This brings me to my question. Being an English major I would like to know what the collective is for ‘obliviot’?”
Now this is a weird story! First the story, from True’s 30 November 2014 issue, and then the photo that goes with it.
After years and years on this distribution, Jeff in Virginia unsubscribed last week, complaining there were “too many ads for the premium edition — it like [sic] a never-ending pledge-week on PBS.”
If someone — probably a friend — sent you to this page, read it carefully! This is a true story, from This is True’s 15 January 2012 issue.
Old jokes clogging your inbox are bad enough. Stupid “warnings” about the most unlikely hazards are worse: they irritate the smart people and panic the dumb ones. Now and then, when someone forwards an urban legend to a bunch of people, they really pay a big price.
Another story where you just have to see the accompanying photo — an instant classic!
(Warning: It looks a bit intense, but it’s fake: the woman is not only not dead, she’s not at all injured.)
Another classic story that is so nicely served by the photograph referenced in the story. From True’s 15 May 2011 issue.
It happens once in awhile that someone really wants to whine at me for something, but doesn’t have the guts to sign their name. Normally, such complaints are summarily trashed: if they can’t even sign their name to their opinion, then really, what’s that opinion worth?
Last week, quite a few readers wanted to report an “error.” Here’s the story, from the 10 October (10/10/10!) issue: