We always tend to look at the news in any given year as a roll call of tragic events. We have had our usual dose of suicide bombs, earthquakes, floods, fires and wars.
Add to that the whole global warming, economic slowdown, credit crunch and all this world has been through then you have plenty to be gloomy about.
That is why God created idiots, so we can laugh at the stupidity and get through the hard times. A world without idiots would be very boring indeed, and I would argue that they add a lot to our lives. This year saw a veritable collection of idiots to rival any other year.
My idiot of the year was recently in the news. That Nigerian boy who had everything but decided he wanted to blow himself up on Christmas day.
Even his father snitched on him to the CIA, he begged them to arrest his son before he did something crazy. They didn’t listen and we were lucky his bomb didn’t go off, instead the acid in the lethal solution caught fire and burned his leg. He was beaten up for several minutes by fellow passengers until they landed.
We should also remember the safety technician who was sent to investigate a gas leak in a warehouse in West Texas.
For safety the lights were switched off, so he pulled out a lighter to see what he was doing and boom! Or the burglar from New York who emptied a house of all its valuables.
He also raided the fridge but the food gave him the runs so he ran to the toilet, he didn’t flush. The police were able to identify his DNA in the poop.
Even here in Rwanda, we have some world-class idiots, like the boy I told to load my car and he ended up filling up the drivers seat leaving the boot empty.
“Where am I going to sit?” and he just looked at me with a face as if I was the stupid one. “You told me to pack the car, I did it.” Arguing with someone like that is a futile thing to do.
You are dealing with a person who has no exposure to modernity, he has been plucked out of a village where his brain was never challenged and it just stagnated.
He therefore cannot put himself in the position of someone else, he never thought to leave a space for the driver, he just heard “load the car.”
At least in some way it wasn’t his fault, but when idiocy happens in a developed country it is worse. A Western idiot has at least had some education or opportunities in life.
Maybe through some bad choices in life or misfortune they end up doing stupid stuff. So for now I will be patient with such people, losing your temper with them gives you ulcers.
My personal choice for idiot of the year was the mechanic who tried to fix the wiring in my car. All he had to do was replace the indicator flasher, instead he tangled up all the wires until the car was undrivable.
Every time I flicked the left indicator the horn beeped, and amazingly he wanted payment for this idiocy. I paid him at least his transport and lunch, so I guess I was the real idiot.
Rama Isibo is a social commentator