It's like the thing where you slowly boil a frog and it never notices somehow

One time I sponsored a kickstarter at the thousand dollar level and got a painted rubber duck

Let’s say your regularly scheduled house cleaning crew comes to your house every other Tuesday, in the afternoon. Maybe you hide in your room while they’re cleaning, maybe you totally clear out, maybe you go in your backyard or something. It doesn’t really matter where you go. You probably do a quick “tidying” pickup sort of dance around your own home before they arrive so that things are at least sufficiently clean … that they can clean. This is both sort of absurd, but also obviously necessary.

Anyway, here’s a fun practical joke to play on your house cleaners — unbeknownst to them, you hire a second cleaning crew to come on Tuesday morning and also clean your house. But you don’t tell them! That’s the joke part. You will have tidied up your house early in the morning, then the first crew will have come through in the morning to actually clean, dust, scrub, etc. Around mid-day the house will be clean by anyone’s definition. Then your regular cleaning crew will arrive … and what will they do?! My guess is that they’d just clean your house, but it will be unsatisfying because the visible evidence of their cleaning work will be basically zero.

When you don’t accept the premise, stop playing the game

Often times during a live music event, somewhere in the back half of the performance, the lead singer of the band will “introduce” all the band members to the audience. Maybe each person will play a little solo thingy when they get introduced. For example the lead singer might say “…and on bass guitar, from the city of sin, Johnny Toolbox” - and then Mr. Toolbox (in this hypothetical there’s a guy called Johnny Toolbox from Las Vegas who plays bass in this band) will play some sort of ~15 second long bass solo. At this point the crowd will clap for the person who was just introduced, and then we’ll move on to other band members.

Every now and again the lead singer will use a fairly hyperbolic superlative to describe their bandmates. For example, instead of a simple “and our drummer, Melanie Crimson” they’ll say something like “… and the best fucking drummer on planet earth, Melanie Crimson!” Just once I’d like to see a lead singer come out and recuse themselves from making these announcements, acknowledging that they have a conflict of interest in whether the audience perceives their bandmates as being the best at something or not, since they stand to benefit personally in both a financial and reputation/status sense from these perceptions.

You don’t hear as much about snow tires as you used to

I don’t know if this actually happens in real life or if it only happens in romantic comedies, but there’s a thing where some people in their mid-20s will be like “if neither of us has found someone when we’re 40, let’s get married”. The premise here is usually that getting married is a path to happiness and that despite having been in relationships neither of the people will have “found the one” as it were, but they view each other as an acceptable spouse in the event they haven’t found a better spouse in the interim years.

There’s a lot wrong with this premise. For example, a random person that you believe might be a good long term partner when you are 25 might not jive with what 40 year old you believes. On the flip side, maybe 25 year old you is actually a genius at partner finding and 40 year old you should just listen to them and marry that person. Moreover, the premises that you are looking for a The Right One and also the premise that you are going to need a marriage person to be happy both have some flaws.

All that said, that’s not my point here. I think it would be funny if some people did this, but then they forgot to include the “if neither of us have found someone” part of the agreement! Like they meant to include it but just said it the wrong way so they effectively had just agreed to get married at 40, no conditions attached. But then one of them forgot about it and went and got married and had children and then when they both turned 40 the other one showed up and was like hey uh we need to get married now, and showed them the paperwork from 15 years ago where they had forgotten to include the crucial language around having not found another person. This would be a real dilemma for the married person — do they casually dismiss this absurd proposition from their former acquaintance … or do they abandon their spouse, kids, house, etc, in order to fulfill a half-baked and poorly specified promise?

Not really a clear answer on this one.

The idea was to include a new theme every single week

In addition to supporting the troops and thanking them for their service, it is now expected in polite society that we also honor our first responders. This group probably includes police officers, firefighters, ambulance/EMT people, and so on — these are the people who are going to be the first ones to rush onto a scene when the thing is going down; hence the name “first responders”. Because they respond first.

Maybe on the periphery of this group you’d have public swimming pool lifeguards, crossing guards at busy intersections, a guy in an airport who makes sure everyone’s in the right security line, transit police, etc. People who are responding to a thing but the thing is probably lower stakes than the top tier of things that first responders are responding first to.

One group that’s rarely celebrated like the first responders - let alone the troops - but who deserve more praise than they get are the LAST responders. There’s gotta be a guy in the fire department who - well after all the damage is done and the action has wrapped up and things are under control - steps onto the scene and takes a survey of what’s happened and is just like “yup, I guess we’re good here” and then goes and files a report about the whole thing. They are technically still a “responder” in the sense that the emergency that happened has indeed triggered them to come do a thing in response, but they are nowhere near first, and maybe didn’t even get there in time to help out if they wanted to. I don’t know if these people need their own parade or not, but let’s all try to give them some more love and respect.

When you look back to the past, the past looks forward to you

I’m going to change the names here to protect the innocent (or maybe not so innocent!?) people involved. I recently walked past a medical office and on the outside doors of the building were a list of the top-tier, prime-grade, a-number-one staff who presumably “practice” there. I’m not sure how necessary this is because I don’t think doctors are like household names for the most part so I don’t know what sort of business your walk-by traffic is bringing. I guess this is mostly useful for people to make sure they’ve arrived at the right place, and because important people like to put their name on things.

As a side note — doctors, please knock it off with the “practicing” on our time when your supposed to be fixing our booboos. Do that in med school and then get. in. the. game. Like the rest of us adults.

Anyway the way the names were listed is that for every doctor there would be a line like “Dr. Cletis Monkerton, MD” or “Dr. Suzie Suzerton, MD” and so on. They included both the “Dr.” up front before their name, and also the “MD” trailing behind their name. This really seems like overkill! We saw the “Dr”, we get it, you’re a doctor. We don’t also need the MD at the end. Or if you like the MD at the end, you can skip the “Dr” up front. Pick one, is my point.

I guess a counterpoint here is that they are trying to distinguish themselves from other types of doctors, but I don’t think anyone walking past what is obviously a medical office is going to mistakenly believe they’ll find a university humanities department inside or something like that.