One man's attempt at literacy

Tag Archives: Wrong

Recently, I’ve been volunteering at a weekend writing workshop for kids. At one of these classes we had to create a how-to guide on a topic of our choosing — and by “we” I mean the children, and I, being the Repository of Infinite Knowledge I am, decided to also write something. After pondering all the possible subjects I could explain (how to act like a muppet, how to get over 10 Twitter followers total, etc.), I ended up making a comprehensive guide on How to Always Be Right.

See, if there is one lovely quality about me, it is that I know a multitude of useless facts, and pretend to know about even more about things I have little- to no inkling of. I have learned after years of tireless information giving that being an expert at fake-information-giving while retaining my pride requires the ability to frame everything in such a way that, more than being proven correct, I can never be proven incorrect. It’s like how Congress doesn’t do anything so they can never be blamed for doing something wrong.

If you’re an aspiring know-it-all, I now present my guide on How to Always Be Right, which will surely aid you in having people roll their eyes at your constantly impressing your friends. This will be written in the same format as the sheet the kids and I were given.

Captain Know-it-All

How to Always Be Right

Topic: Extreme knowledge imitation.

Audience: People who hate admitting defeat/ignorance.

Purpose: Never be wrong. Ever.

  1.  Begin by making a reasonable claim, like, “I hear birds grow their feathers between 6 and 8 weeks old.” Provide unconfirmable support, e.g. “I heard this on NPR or in the Audubon Magazine sometime in the late 20th Century.”
  2. If someone challenges your claim, push back by pointing out the subjectivity of life and that the definition of “right” and “wrong” is transmutable, so you’re definitely right in some form or context, even if it isn’t apparent to the majority of society.
  3. If the person continues to feebly deny your rightness, disarm them by acknowledging they have valid points, though they are clearly less valid than your own. Pat them on the back for having a fraction of your knowledge.
  4. Finally, state, “Well, I guess we’ll never be sure about the true answer, so I’m probably, most assuredly right.” Then nod at them in humble victory and change the subject to ice cream before they can speak further falsehoods.

Supporting quotation: “Greg, you are so right, I am/we are sorry for ever doubting your unparalleled brainpower.”