By Chuck Woodbury
I’ve edited and published this newsletter for 18 years. We’ve posted at least 30,000 articles and close to 100,000 photos, most without eliciting any anger. But, wow! Nowadays, the hotheads have reared their formerly tolerant heads. “It’s okay to be a hothead,” they believe, the behavior imprinted into their often pliable brains day after day by social media where organically hatched hotheads, stupid people, misfits and angry old men find a welcoming home.
In Thursday’s newsletter, our poll question was: “For men: How often do you carry a pocket knife?” Geez. . . some women in the crowd went ballistic! “Women carry pocket knives, too!” they wrote, often angrily.
I know that! Yes, women, I know that.
But I also know that the percentage of women who carry pocket knives compared to men is very low. So if I were to include both men and women in the survey, the results would be meaningless because I just wanted to ask men. If I want to ask women if they carry a pocket knife, then that will be a different survey. We’ll do that this coming week. Then we can compare the sexes.
Let’s say we ran a question that asked, “For women: “How often do you shave your legs?” Do you think we should include men in that survey? But you can bet that if we just asked women, a hothead man or two would write to say, “I shave my legs, you sexist pig, so next time don’t ignore me and my buddies who don’t like hair!”
We ran a joke this week in RV Daily Tips with a Polish theme. I didn’t think it was at all derogatory to Polish people, but we got angry letters anyway.
Heaven help me if I publish an Italian or Irish Joke. And, blonde jokes are totally out of line these days (hey, maybe they should be!). And forget about “Yo Mama” jokes.
I get it that some jokes are totally in bad taste (and we do our best to never run those) but others are harmless. Laughter is good.
I am telling you that if I were to run a joke that poked fun at chickens, I’d get angry letters from chicken owners. One or more would blast me with “My chickens are smarter than you, you dumbass!”
Whoa! Everyone, calm down. Take a deep breath. Walk outside and smell some roses. Life is short and precious. Lighten up.
P.S. And now I will step off my soapbox to say that perhaps one percent of this audience is comprised of hotheads.
The overwhelming majority of you are among the nicest, kindest people I have ever known. I’ve become friends with many of you, some I’ve known for 10, 20 years. . . even longer. I love hearing from you, and look forward to your intelligent commentary. While the angry, mean-spirited people sometimes get me down, you always bring me right back up! Thanks.
There’s a term for the “hotheads” you describe, they are called trolls, many of the hotheads as you describe them, really have no interest in RV’ing, but have found this interactive newsletter and are looking for something to disagree with. Anything at all. If you state that is the Sun in the sky @ high noon, they will say it is the moon. It’s best to ignore them and they will go away. But you will find some RV’ers who disagree with you too, that is just life. Everyone is entitled to their opinion….
Angry old men. How about the angry old women out there. My feelings are hurt. Where’s my lawyer?
Chuck often incites dissent and creates un necessary drama and responses. Then he whines about what he caused.
I am actually surprised you don’t get hot headed replies on every single thing you write about or post. IMO folks have become way to sensitive to “life”. Life is short, enjoy it before its gone. Stop looking for things to complain about and look for ways to smile. THE ONLY WAY SOME FOLKS WOULD BE ABLE TO GO THROUGH A DAY WITHOUT SOMETHING OFFENDING THEM WOULD BE TO PUT ON THE EAR MUFFS AND BLIND FOLD.
Your use of the term “chicken” is offensive, and a trigger word for many individuals who have been bullied and oppressed in their lives. In the future, please restrict your descriptor to the grammatically preferred “Gallus domesticus”.
For those that are perpetually offended, get over yourself, you are not the center of the universe. If comments or jokes are pointed directly at you, then you may be justified in being offended. If someones comments, thoughts or attempts at humor in a publicatlon read by tens of thousands of people offends you, change the channel or find the off button.
The worst thing you can do is keep apologizing, it just builds momentum for political correctness run amuck. In todays world I would think all comedians would be serving life sentences in pc jail. After all, something or (usually) someone is always the butt of a joke.
For the record, I already know I am not the center of the universe, so feel free to be offended and send the artillary my way.
I miss the days of the Jeffersons and All in the Family, when TV shows were able to make fun of racism.
Now days, people seem to enjoy the power of speaking about their “hurt feelings”.
I miss the days of funny late night TV and Hollywood award shows, instead of the political bashing that they have become.
Just my two cents worth.
Thumbs up on all that!! So many are grossly over sensitive and self absorbed. YIKES! That’s one thing that killed comedians especially trying to play on a college campus. To them, my God (oops, guess that’s offensive to some [to bad]) unwind!! Get your head out of your phone and look up at a beautiful night sky sometime. P L E A S E don’t cave to the loud few. Now, off my soap box to enjoy a beautiful day outside in the St. Louis Mo area.
I think your jokes are just fine & sometimes funny!! Lol some are cute!
It is just ridiculous the way many people get all upset about almost anything. I believe it is due to our political climate. It is their problem not yours.
Keep the jokes coming! Some people seem to just have little tolerance for much of anything these days. Not sure how they make it through the day because there is so much out there which could potentially offend them – if they let it, So under the same concept as “you cannot be friends with everyone” just keep the jokes coming, because apparently there is never going to be a situation where someone will not like it.
Also – they say that the best jokes are those which have an element of truth to them. So people should keep that in mind.
And finally – Chuck – thanks for your writings on RV life and traveling – I really appreciate it.
Was in the Navy and in boot camp. One of the swabbes said one polish joke all day and most of the night. We ask him where he learned them. He said he was Polish and guess where most of them came from.
I’m ready for a good Portuguese joke. I usually them into Polish jokes, There all in good fun until someone can use them to gain something from them. I’m Portuguese and a simple joke will not put me into a rage. I worked at a university where you had to walk on eggs with everything you may want to say. It’s gotten way too out of hand
I recently read that in older times the word tolerant meant that you and I disagreed about
something BUT we agreed to just disagree and “still get along”. Now it seems that today
if you don’t strongly believe just as I do, then I get angry and call you intolerant.
I’m with you, Chuck. I just hate how sensitive some people have become nowadays. I wish people would just lighten up. Life’s too short!
If you use the late night comedians as a guide to what kind of joke is acceptable so not to offend any of our beloved politically correct, avoid anyone or anybody except the president of the United States, Trump. It is amazing the things they say about him that would never ever fly against any other person, ethnic group, religion etc.
I was informed last week that you can’t call people oriental, it is somehow offensive. I forgot what the correct term is. I also saw that somebody is now keeping a book on new offensive things, we have become the land of the offended! By the way I remember you being offended by some guy calling you pal so I guess we all have our things, sorry that was a cheap shot but just couldn’t resist😊
In Chicago they are polock jokes, in Oklahoma they are Arkansas jokes, in Texas (AKA known as the Holy land) they are Aggie jokes, and in California (AKA known as the land of granola-what ain’t fruits or nuts are flakes) they are Okie jokes. Always the same joke. Lighten up and have fun. If you take everything that seriously-you should not be RVing.
Just this morning I dropped a response to a writer who was complaining that he was getting overwhelmed with “negative” comments. As a writer, editor and publisher, I’m sure the same advice applies:
“It’s pretty much a given that writers need a rhino-tough skin to face rejection, criticism, and negative comments. Submitting a work of personal creativity for public scrutiny is a bit like walking around bare-assed at a drunken fraternity party. It’s rather expected that somebody will take a hard swat… or worse.
Fair? Probably not. It’s just part of swimming naked in the pond. There’s always something seeking an easy target. Screaming at the snapping turtle that latched on to your toggle does little good to loosen its jaws.
Helpful? Probably not. But its the world we live in. The only way to escape it is to not share what we write.
So, grin and bare it… eh?”
You have hit the nail right on the head! Thanks to electronic media, this country has become addicted to OUTRAGE! Goodness, it’s no wonder stress and high blood pressure are rampant! Did you hear the one about the knife packing, hairy, blond Polish woman who…? Have a wonderful, lighthearted week!
Unfortunately, it seems like everyone in our country today is waiting to find fault with everyone else. It feels like a tinderbox. A neighbor can’t look at another neighbor without one of them thinking the other is giving them the evil eye. In Florida, many meetings of homeowners associations now have added police security to prevent fist fights and altercations. It is extremely sad for many of us who recall happier, friendlier times.