In August of 2001,

In August of 2001, shortly before the world fell apart, I asked a question in a fit of angst: What is wrong with people? I sent this question on to a group of friends and relatives, and asked them to answer the question in 100 words or less. This sparked the begining of a series of monthly surveys, which I am now posting here. I have done a bit of editing for major/obvvios spelling errors and typos, but otherwise the answers are just as they wrote them to me. Answers are also listed in chronological order.
In 100 Words or Less: What is Wrong With People?

Scott Hegerty wrote:

They all fucked up an' shit.

Janson Olson wrote:

Not enough drugs.

Aaron Pavao wrote:

A big part is because they are conscious. Self-awareness begets self-consciousness, which begets insecurity. Many people problems stem from insecurity, an inability to confidently be what and who one is. People do and say things because they perceive that it will make others perceive that those others will think about them in a certain way.

The other part is sheer stupidity. The American culture derides and punishes intelligence early, in both overt (taunting by peers starting around 5th grade) and insidious (punishing an intelligent child by making him sit in class while the slower children catch up, which creates boredom as well as a sense of ostracism).

The wealthy/ruling class gets many benefits from an insecure and/or stupid population, and so it is to their advantage to perpetuate these phenomena.

I'm sorry if that seems inarticulate or poorly supported; I did, after all, only have 100 words, and I think I went over by about fifty words, at that.

AP also wrote:

I want to throw an addendum or something onto my answer. Do with it what
you want.

People suck. An individual person is usually pretty cool, or at least okay,
when they get a chance. The trick is to talk to people when they are being
persons, and not people.

Carl Klinger wrote:

People have the tendency to not see the entire picture. They focus on a small part of the whole, or on an imagined point of a picture, not realizing the picture they imagine themselves in is in a larger gallery, or is an abstract thought of someone else. People need to stop thinking in a linear fashion. Life is cyclical, and A+B=C does NOT apply to life. People do not understand that living without pain is similar to watching TV with the contrast all the way in one direction. Most of all, people don't know that there is more than people. And that, folks, is what is wrong with people.(Also, many of them don't agree with me. I don't think words in parentheses count as typed words, so never mind everything in them is over the specified 100 words. Also realize the above essay came off the top of my head, and deserves much deeper thinking that it was given.)

Greg Buxton wrote:

Larry Wall, the creator of the computer programming language Perl
responded to a message where someone had proposed a change, and then
wanted to find out if anyone else thought the change would be a "Good

> What do people think?
What, do people think?

I think that sums it up best.

Jackie Herman wrote:


Gretchen Olson wrote:

Why don't you ask them???? You don't know their lives. Maybe they need a cigarette. Maybe they need a hug. Be less selfish and instead of asking what is wrong with people, ask yourself how you can help. When someone pisses you off, force yourself to think one good thing about them. Create tolerance within yourself. Create beauty. And if you can't do this, then piss on ya. You are probably a bitter old half-demon and may God have mercy on YOUR soul.

Anandi Gandolfi wrote:

nothing....that a good solid dose of empathy couldn't

Lindsay Haydn wrote:

The major thing that's wrong with every person i know (self included
sometimes) is this: fear. People are so afraid of being alone or being
disliked that they build up all these defenses which inhibit their growth as
spirits on this fabulous planet. Exhibit A:
I had some friends over at my house the other day, and the song "Cecilia" by
Simon and Garfunkel came on the radio. Well, as everyone knows, "Cecilia"
is the most danceable song ever written. So naturally, we all got up and
began hopping around the living room like mad, bouncing on the furniture and
screaming at the top of our lungs "Ceceeeelia, you're breakin' my heart!..."
Well, let me correct that. All but one of us got up to dance. My more
conservative friend refused to get up and hoe-down with us. Instead, she sat
in the corner like a lump the whole time muttering, "you guys are silly.",
which translated loosely means, "you guys look like big rejects, and I
wouldn't be caught dead doing the pogo to Simon and Garfunkel.
Now, was my friend embarrassed because she was a bad dancer? I highly doubt
it, because frankly, the rest of wouldn't have made it as Solid Gold dancers
by a long shot. No, she was embarrassed by the very idea of our doing silly
dances in the living room! WHO the hell was she trying to impress? There
was no one else there but us, and we were all dancing! Was she afraid that
we all got up and acted like freaks just to trick her into doing it too?
Deep down I think we're all afraid that everyone is cooler than us.
The real problem with people is this...we are all initiates of the cult of
Cool. People fear looking stupid SO MUCH that they would rather sit on
their asses and dis every good thing that another person tries to do than
get up and take the risk that they might look like asses. This really mega
sucks. If everyone has this "'m too cool" attitude in order to protect
their ego from harm, then nothing but NOTHING is ever going to get done
that's worth doing.
"I'm too cool to care about the environment"
"I'm too cool to show my friends and family how much I love them"
"I'm too cool to cry in front of other people"
"I'm too cool to be kind to someone who is different than me"
When people die, they regret the things they DIDN'T do. The cult of Cool
teaches us NOT to stand out in a crowd. NOT to take risks. NOT to rock the
boat. The cult of Cool teaches us to go against what our hearts tell us.
Fuck that. Let's all be the biggest geeks we can.

Little Bird wrote:

What is wrong with people is that they don't have fuzzy stuffed owls. The
consumption levels of food that are fun, including bananas because they are
funny shaped, milkshakes because they are wonderful, and flying saucers from
England which defy description in a really good way, is way low. I don't
think enough people own kites and bubbles and way too many have debt and
issues. what's wrong with people is that they take themselves seriously and
ignore the world and don't travel to France just because they want really
good bread. But the most horrible thingI can think of that really shows
that something is not right in the state of humanity is SUVs. And people
buy them. Enough said.

Sandra Krider wrote:

I was trying to think of a flippant response, but I think I'll be serious.
None of us have our priorities straight. Like, we dwell on the stupid shit
and let the little things get in the way of bigger happiness. For instance,
I'm pretty DAMN happy in my life right now- and I spend every night bitching
about this chick I work with. How stupid is that?

Also, I do think that "people" percentage-wise, would be on the whole
largely more intelligent if the entire southern region of this nation were
to suddenly self combust. Just think- no more bumper stickers that say "Yo
mama was pro-life, chile" and "Yankees 1, Rebels 0, Halftime".

Wouldn't the world be a better place?

Nathan Ferch wrote:

my first submission, which is a very small part of my disdain for people, of
which you can choose from which is the most merit-worthy or whatever.

people have very poor taste in music. consider the music selection at your
local hole-in-the-wall bar/tavern/club/cocktail lounge/lounge/etc. the general
idea of most jukeboxes in the usa seems to be to include albums to which the
average meathead or PPADG will find the song they "love so much!" (i.e. which
has been played to death in the past 1-20 years in the past. these poor
selections typically clog, have been clogging, and continue to clog the
jukebox for the duration of the night. in the rare cause that there is some
sort of conspirative miscalculation and the jukebox remains silent for thirty
seconds or so, at which point there is an eggo-commercial style standoff,
eventually resulting in an even higher amount of shitty music played.

call me snide, call me vain, call me an elitist, but i think most people have
some intrinsic major malfunction that causes them to give their hard-earned
dollars to some record playing machine to hear songs they have undoubtedly
heard thousands of times in the comfort of their abode. why not try and
educate the general moron masses with some songs they have never heard, and
by-golly, may actually like, then bore with some drivel that they've heard
time and time again.

i love pavement.

David Johns wrote:

I must say that my opinion of "what's wrong with people" has gone from "They
just suck." to "What's right with them is their hearts. Even if their actions
are wrong, it is usually a well-meaning heart that is the behind it all.

Nathan Hall wrote:

Technology is wrong with people...Matters of convenience...People working on
LABOR DAY...Coffee flavored beer...Beer flavored water...Water flavored
caffeine... Enya fans (Jesus Christ!)...Emotional connection to inanimate
objects...Poorly trained dogs...Racism..Sexism..Pessimism.

Luke Arthur wrote:

Procrastinators! That's what's wrong with people ... you're all

Katherine Olson wrote:

All of the above. None of the above. If I knew the answer, I wouldn't be asking the question. Maybe people just don't want to really listen to each other, or to themselves. Maybe they are afraid of what they will hear. Maybe they just need a good night's sleep and a balanced diet. Maybe it is time for a nap and a snack. Maybe we all need to lay off the smack.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Kayjayoh published on March 29, 2002 1:34 PM.

"Blessed are the peacemakers..." was the previous entry in this blog.

I finally broke down is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.


Powered by Movable Type 4.32-en