Common\ adj: belonging to or serving the community, shared by a number in a group, widely or generally known, found or observed, familiar.
Sense\vb: to be or become aware of, to perceive by the senses, to detect automatically.
Now put the two together: common sense. Something that seems to have left the human race. Did we eat too much red dye #2? Did we evolve away from it with too much high education? Were we taught common sense and now it’s not being taught? What happened?
I look around me these days and can’t help but wonder what will become of the human race. People far more educated than I will ever be can’t walk around the block on their own. If it’s not in a book they have no clue. If they didn’t learn it at college it might as well not even exist. It is said as humans we only use 10% of our brains but I’m wondering if we actually use that much.
Common sense should tell you if it’s 118* outside you shouldn’t go hiking in the desert. Nope, yesterday there were people out hiking and they had to get rescued.
Common sense should tell you if the mountains are getting heavy snows, you shouldn’t take yourself and family up into the forest to look for a Christmas tree. Yet every year you hear of people having to get rescued from a snowy death.
Common sense should tell you to pay your rent and other responsibilities before you take you and your family on a vacation or off to the movies. Well, we know how that is working out for millions of families.
The list goes on and on and yet people keep making the same mistakes and living the same life styles as they always have. Then I wonder if we are the only country that suffers from the last of common sense? Young native children in South America seem to have enough sense to survive in the rain forest without safety labels on every stick and twig. I look at the warning labels on the things I purchase and say, “OK, that tells me that someone actually tried to curl their hair while taking a shower!”
“Do not use as a toy.” Really? Someone actually spent $300 on a carpet cleaner and let their children use it as a toy? What, they turned it on and rode it like a horse?
“Do not pick up anything that is burning or smoking, such as cigarettes, matches or hot ashes.” I might be stepping out on a limb here but my vacuum is almost totally plastic, I’m pretty sure things will melt if I pick up something burning. Why even if I was using my mom’s old vacuum that was all metal, the cloth and paper bags would burst into flames.
“Do not put children inside washer or dryer.” What, will they shrink?
The one that tops it all for me, is the disclaimer, “Do not try this at home.” Which in the land of the walking stupid translates into, “Hey, let’s go try that!” Which explains why our emergency rooms are always full.
I certainly have no answers as to where our common sense went or when it actually left. I do know that I’m glad I grew up in the era when we just knew certain things, they were a given. And if we didn’t know, one good knock on the head and we learned not to try that again. Or in many cases a good talking to by our parents or even a spanking, drove home the idea that we should do that again. For the most part we didn’t have to wait until one of us was in the emergency room for us to learn the lesson. You noticed I said for the most part. Trunk surfing was a bad idea but it was so much fun, until one of us crashed and burned. He was sent to the emergency room with a bad case of road rash. In our defense we knew better but decided we would take our chances.
Oh, then there was the time we decided to pull an old car hood down the snow-covered road with several of us holding on for dear life. Can you give me a big “Ah duh?” But that’s another story…..