Sometimes Playing Dumb is the Smartest Thing to Do

Let’s be honest. Playing dumb is neither fun nor easy. However we all have to do it for the sake of something. We all gotta work. We all gotta eat. And we all need some form of spiritual healing.

Take a look for yourself:

Office Fight

Your work family dishes out a different set of VIP rules for your colleague, who happens to have the same title as you and the same pay as you, but you’re not supposed to know that you’re given the short end of the stick.  You aren’t paid to think for yourself. That’s not expected nor written in your employee handbook, so what do you do? Simple. You play dumb until you find a new job or secretly manage to beat some [employment ] ethics and equality into your colleague and every suite mate that leads that colleague to believe their shit doesn’t stink. Violence succeeds where Human Resources fail.


Your church family writes notes about your colorfully tainted life while you’re singing a solo with the choir. You can’t condemn them to hell because somewhere in the bible that’s written to be frowned upon, so what do you do? You play dumb and wait until it’s time for the congregational prayer. Then while everybody’s eyes are closed, pour a few dozen Ex-Lax pills into the communion wine. At that point you can stop playing dumb and instead sit back and wait for the magic to happen. The magic will more than likely happen just before the devil’s personal chauffeurs arrive to carry your sinful ass to hell.  If you’re a little smarter, you’ll wait until church is over to cuss everybody the hell out, but noooooooooo. You’re not that smart. You have to play dumb and shit. At least this way you only indirectly interrupt the church service. That’ll prolong your trip to purgatory.

Pay up

What if someone confronts you about money you’ve owed them since elementary school? Remember that day you borrowed $.50 from someone to buy a Whatchamacallit some umpteen years ago? When you sunk your front teeth into that crunchy caramel nougat, you had no idea that thirty years later those same two front teeth would rot and fall out on the day you’d run into the then most popular girl in all of the 6th grade. What do you do now? Smile and play dumb, pretending you have a full set of teeth in your mouth. Wait. I take that back. Smiling would in fact be dumb. Not playing dumb. You’d be the talk of your 6th grade class, provided everyone in your 6th grade class is still alive, and remembers you, or care(s)/(ed) about you, or don’t have teeth of their own. What would be the chances of that? What do you care? You’re still playing dumb, right? Or is that a dumb question?


Your supervisor asks you if the color of her dress brings out the color of her eyes. Even though her eyes on a normal day are a soul-less black and her pupils completely disappear when it’s her time of the month, if you want to continue receiving paychecks with cute little smiley faces over each “i” in your name, you’d better play dumb and lie like hell when you tell her “yes, that beautiful dress almost hides the hatred in your eyes. I feel like I could smack you and actually get away with it.”

WARNING: Do not try this at home or in your wildest dreams. 

To tell you the truth, I could continue with this list of appropriate times to play dumb, but there is someone banging on my door, no doubt with a reason to question the paper bag full of dog poop that someone left sitting on their front door step. I may know the person that left the shit there. I may be the person that left the shit there.  But for the sake of my health and physical ability to walk – ahem RUN FOR MY LIFE – should a shitty situation arise, I’d better play dumb and act like none of this, this post or the bag of puppy poo, ever happened.

I swear, sometimes playing dumb is the smartest thing you can do.


Things Not to Say to Your Boss, Unless You Just Don’t Give a…

Everyone has a moment where they want to tell their supervisor what they really think about them.  Even your supervisor has those days with their supervisor.  The office is the one place where you can count on all your colleagues to be on their “A” game when it comes to being fake.  Being fake at the office is the survival of the fittest!  It has to be done in order to ensure a steady paycheck and a couple of free cocktails during staff luncheons.  The hard part isn’t NOT speaking your mind; it’s to avoid saying the wrong things to the people who matter most.  And by “people who matter most” I mean the people who sign your paychecks!  Some things you may say by accident.  Some, by osmosis. Some things you might say just to get a rise or a laugh.  But when your money is concerned, the one thing you should concentrate on saying the most is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.  If you just have to say something to let your boss know they are the living equivalence of monkey sweat, then choose a nice, flattering lie.  Tell them you can tell they’ve lost weight in their neck or something like that.  Be careful though.  Some of your compliments may come out all wrong and could cause your ass to live out of a shoe box in your neighbor’s back yard.  When in doubt, give them the middle finger when you think they’re not looking.  Most supervisors find power in signing their John Hancock on a pink slip.  So be warned.

Below are a list of things you should never say to your boss, unless you just don’t give a f*ck.


“Nice Rack.”  It’s a known rule that you shouldn’t gawk over your supervisor unless you have mad game or every intention on screwing them for A) a promotion, B) blackmail or C) leverage, however most people are grossed out by the sight of their supervisors.  I think it’s a “power” thing, so this comment isn’t said too frequently.  At any rate, unless you and your boss are totally wasted at an office shindig, telling them they have a nice rack is a sure way to get sued or canned.  If your supervisor is a man, it’s a sure way to get the crap beaten out of you.


“Did you smell that?”  Farting without care is never good.    …well, I shouldn’t say ‘never’. Farting because you’re subliminally referring to your boss as a piece of sh*t is never good.  Again, maybe I shouldn’t say ‘never’.  Trust me – they know they’re pieces of sh*t, they just don’t want to be reminded by a subordinate.  Bad day or not, passing gas and asking your boss if they smelled it is probably not a good way to build your own character, as entertaining as it may be.  But you haven’t lived until you’ve tried it at least once.


“Go away, I’m on the phone.”  Slacking off at work is an unwritten responsibility that’s included in every employee’s job description.  Just as it’s unwritten, it should be done in private – but how many bosses do you know like to give their employees privacy?  If you’re having one of those days where you don’t feel like hearing the hum-drum of your manager’s bitchfests, pick up the phone and speak randomly to the dial tone.  Tell your boss to beat it until you’re done with your phone call.  Telling them to take a hike is a grand way to let them know you’d rather spend your days in an unemployment or soup kitchen [receiving] line.  Either way, you’ll have all the time and privacy you need once your ass has been fired!


“You need an assistant.”  Suggesting to your manager that they need an assistant reiterates the question of why they hired you in the first place.  Just like you think your boss is a stinky butt hole, they think the same sh*t about you.  So after you’ve put your foot in your mouth and given them something to think about, just wait patiently for security to escort you out of the building. Most terminated employees don’t take their termination very well. Why should you be any different?  It really doesn’t matter one way or the other.  Just go out and find another job to be lazy at or another boss to insult.


“I can not ignore you and concentrate on eating potato chips at the same time.”  No matter how hard you try, the sound of the loud crunch of potato chips does not drown out the monotonous echo of added work loads, high demands or long-winded conversations of dissatisfaction. You may be tempted to tell your boss to shut the hell up so you can concentrate on grubbing on your snacks, but it may not go over so well.  If you think typical superior blah blah is hard to wrap your head around, you haven’t heard anything until you’ve heard, “You’re fired!” barbarically battling the crunch of your chips.


The list definitely continues with the “what not to say” to your supervisor or anyone responsible for signing your checks, for that matter.  Though you may be driven to tell them to kiss your ass or suck on smoldering hot lava rocks, it probably wouldn’t be a good idea to press your luck until they’ve cleared the room.  So the next time you get the urge to fix your lips to say something foolish, fight it.  All it takes is a little effort.  And 90% of any effort is getting started.


Quote of the week:    “When you’re right, no one remembers. When you’re wrong, no one forgets.”