I fear that starting this in any way (no matter how many times I type and retype the sentence) is going to offend someone out there. This is my statement that I’m over it and I don’t care.
This is about evolution (in the sense that any Catholic believes in evolution) of stupidity into common sense. What causes this evolution? Age, growth, experience. Innately, children are stupid (read: innocent, lack experience, dream too big, etc.). It’s only with time and playing and experience that start to pick up on how the real world works.
Eventually, children evolve into kids, who somehow have more common sense (or fear?) than their adolescent counterparts, who perceive themselves as invincible and completely lose all the common sense they built up as children.
And then, as young adults, that common sense returns, multiplied by their experience and the fact that they survived adolescence. As people continue to age, the common sense is supposed to grow, eventually taking over the stupid.
This is not to say that we all don’t break the rules. Sometimes, children have an astounding sense of common sense. My niece, Sophie, was listening to Mike and I pass puns back and forth with her parents. When Mike said, “A broken pencil is pointless,” his brother and sister-in-law laughed.
His niece, Sophie, however, looked up from her Play-Doh/Barbie Magicscape and said, “That’s not funny–that’s a fact.” And it was.
On the other side of the spectrum, this is not to say that 80-year-olds with sound minds don’t sometimes completely miss the R.M.S. Common Sense and say/do something stupid.
The point is that the 80/20 rule is supposed to reverse somewhere on the journey to adulthood.
The sad thing is that it’s not always the case. I see grown adult people acting more recklessly, completely refusing to exercise their common sense. I don’t get it. I mean, sure, if something crazy is happening in their lives and they’re acting out, that somehow seems more forgivable to me. But gah–some of it, I refuse to look past.