Of Cones & Stupidity

When I was in eleventh grade, one of the few comforts in my life was the certainty that I would never again have to calculate the volume of a cone. Now I feel betrayed. Guess what I had to do with Jasper this morning? I can handle cylinders and prisms pretty well, but I like calculating the volume of cones as much as Jasper does, which is not at all. *sigh*

This afternoon, I dropped Jasper off at his 4-H skit practice and drove up to Hobby Lobby so that I could get some rocks to put in the bottom of my planters. As I waited in line to pay for my armful of heavy rocks, the guy who was two places ahead of me was broadcasting his stupidity to everyone in the front of the store.

Loudly, he bragged about making it to the north side of Tyler in 18 minutes (a 45-mile drive). I didn’t have long to wonder how this could be possible, because he proudly explained that he had been going 160 miles per hour the whole way. Also, that no one could stop him because he had his flashing volunteer firefighter lights turned on. He then confessed that he actually is not even a volunteer fireman anymore. When the lady ahead of me asked why he had given up being a fireman, he explained that after going through all the training, he realized he didn’t want to risk his life running into a burning building to save someone else’s kids, when he had two kids of his own who need their dad. His older son is eleven years old, which was rather startling to me because the dad appeared to be no older than twenty. Finally it was his turn in line, and it turned out he was there to return a model truck kit because he didn’t know that you had to actually put it together. (!!)

This experience left me with so many questions, the most pressing of which was how on earth a man of such surpassing recklessness managed to live long enough to have two offspring, one of whom is already eleven? What kind of car does he drive that can go 160 miles per hour, and how can he afford it on his blue-collar salary? Did he really want a large group of people to know that he was using his flashing lights illegally? What on earth could be so urgent in Tyler that he had to get there in 18 minutes? How did he get to be his age (whatever it is) without knowing what a “model” kit is? Did he even read the information on the box?

Encounters like this provide me with a great deal of entertainment on otherwise normal days.

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