In my ongoing research for this column, there are certain states that seem to appear on my radar more often than others. Florida, for example, is the current epicenter of stupid, and on any given Friday the antics of Sunshine Staters alone could fill a dozen columns. But picking on Florida is low-hanging fruit, so I only dip into that well when I must.
Texas, by virtue of its sheer size and Texas-ness, is always good for scads of stupid, as are California and New York for very similar reasons. Alaska, surprisingly, has been a fount of stupid recently thanks to a certain family and matriarch from Wasilla. And then, of course, there are crazy-mountain-man havens like Idaho and West Virginia and put-the-fun-in-fundamentalism states like Kansas and Utah. Those are always a hoot.
Oh, and then there's New Jersey, but I tend to give Jersey a bit of a pass because due to America's natural bias against New Jersey, anything that happens there is going to inherently seem stupider than something that happens in, say, Massachusetts. That's just the way it is. Plus, Jersey is pretty low-hanging fruit, too. Anyone can make fun of the Garden State. There's no art to it.
As an intellectual snob, I have always derived a small amount of pride from the thought that my home state, Connecticut, doesn't seem to make the stupid headlines all that often. I realize it's only because Connecticut will always be overshadowed by its more relevant neighbors and not because there's anything smarter about people from the Nutmeg State, but it's still nice not to have a reputation like Florida's.
This week, however, we Nutmeggers get to take center stage because Connecticut has had a pretty stupid fortnight.
Connecticut's big stupid news the past two weeks has revolved around the two skulls found in a recycling center in Stamford. It all began the day before Halloween, when an attendant at the center noticed the skulls and called the police. An investigation of the scene revealed not just the skulls but also a bunch of stuff related to the occult, from videos and magazines to crystals and amulets.
Turns out the skulls had been removed from the home of a guy who had just died, and the two knuckleheads who removed them thought they were plastic. They weren't. They were real human skulls. Police are looking into the matter to see if a criminal investigation is necessary.
A few days before that, a man in Clinton, Connecticut, woke up to find another man, a complete stranger, in bed with him. The other guy, a 26-year-old, had wandered into the home drunk and thought it was his mother's apartment.
That could almost be forgivable. Drunk people do dumb things, after all. But what's really stupid is that when the guy woke up and told the intruder to leave, the 26-year-old refused and instead just sat there and waited for the cops to show up and arrest him. I don't care how drunk you are; that's pretty stupid right there.
Earlier this week, a Durham, Connecticut, company that helps businesses handle personnel issues responded to a lawsuit filed by a former employee by denying that it forced the employee out of his job after co-workers discovered he'd posed nude in Playgirl magazine. The man claimed he was ridiculed and sexually harassed at work so much that he had to leave the job.
Ridiculed? Really? So, a bunch of out-of-shape, likely grotesque office workers made fun of you for being a Playgirl model? That must have really stung.
The most recent Connecticut stupid story involved a drunken Nutmegger who was driving back to Connecticut when he was pulled over by New York state troopers. The guy was hauled off to the police station and given a Breathalyzer test. When the results came back -- 0.13 percent blood alcohol level, well above the legal limit of 0.08 percent -- the man grabbed the paper printout and attempted to eat it.
There's a chance that the man was actually some other type of primate and not a human. Connecticut was home to the chimpanzee that bit off a woman's face, you'll recall. So perhaps the DWI-eater's mind couldn't grasp the concept of digital information and he really thought eating the printout would get him off scot-free. It's certainly possible.
Or maybe the guy was just really, really hungry, in which case I bet that printout would be delicious with a little pinch of nutmeg.
Todd Hartley likes to think he helped Connecticut's stupid problem by moving away. To read more or leave a comment, please visit zerobudget.net.