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Holding Hans with Brian Hansbury: The Origin of Resentment

Dear Hans,

I’ve been dating this girl for about 8 months.  I’m 28.  It’s about time I look for someone to settle down with and have been thinking she’s the one.  This weekend we had some friends over and played Trivial Pursuit.  Everything was going great until she had no idea who LBJ was.  I don’t need the woman who raises my children to be a genius, but I do have certain expectations of what she should know.  Frankly, I was shocked.  Do I need to get over myself and just follow my heart?  Or should I let little bits of trivia dictate my happiness for years to come?

Quizzical in Kew Gardens

‘original post date, 4/23/09, 12:15

"I, Lyndon Baines Johnson, swear that I am not a character from Doonesbury."

Last time I checked they were still teaching United States history in middle and high school curricula (for the curious reader, I usually call a few local high schools every couple of weeks to check).  For your girlfriend to not recall the guy who took over the country after the biggest assassination of the 20th century is inexcusable despite whatever weak excuses she may have at the ready, like, “I was never good at history,” or “My mom died of a heroin overdose during that unit.”

I can make an entire armoir with my mind.

Dropping someone for his/her dumbness is tough because it feels sort of nit-picky, like getting rid of a carpenter who does great work just because he has this odd habit of claiming to be the son of God. You might feel foolish saying, “Hey this girl is beautiful and fun, but I’m going to end it because she doesn’t know the first thing about archipelagos.” You are not foolish.  Do not fall into this trap.  Your fool girlfriend is foolish.  Everyone should know archipelago.  It’s basic geography.

And your real fear is not that this woman is dumb, but that all her idiot genes will be passed on to your progeny.  Let’s face it, if you weren’t interested in her for marriage you wouldn’t give a fat crap that this girl’s proudest academic accomplishment was earning a C+ in Gym.

Her C+ in Gym did earn her that precocious scholarship to the Iowa Hawkeyes football team, though. OOH, major Hawkeyes diss!

And that’s the dilemma with dumb women.  Men like the feeling of being the more needed one in a relationship and you are attracted to her because you are always the hero.  She forgot the code to the garage again?  There you are to save the day with your uncanny ability to remember four digits, consecutively.  Once you start thinking marriage, things change.  All of the sudden, your odds of producing dumb, shitty kids are huge compared to even an incestuous couple.  And when you’re not better than incestuous couples, who are you better than?  The ladies from 2Girls1Cup?  Is that a badge of honor?

The following scene illustrates your fears:

YourTenYearOldSonWithOnlyHalfGoodGenes: Mom, can I put this fork in the microwave with my pasta?
YourLBJNotKnowinWife: I don’t know.  Why don’t we put the cat in the microwave first to test it out.  Just to be safe.
YourTenYearOldSonWithOnlyHalfGoodGenes: Well, that doesn’t make any sense.  Let’s put the fork in the cat’s mouth.  That way we know the fork can go in there.
YourLBJNotKnowinWife: That’s smart.
YourTenYearOldSonWithOnlyHalfGoodGenes: How long should I set it for?
YourLBJNotKnowinWife: 20 minutes.  We want definitive proof.
YourTenYearOldSonWithOnlyHalfGoodGenes: Cool. Can we do it in the bathtub while I take a bath?
YourLBJNotKnowinWife: I don’t see anything wrong with that.  I’ll sit in there with you and quiz you on your presidents.  Dad’ll be so happy to hear that when he comes home.

Major cry for help.

The main reason to avoid marrying dumb is the Crying Child Theory of Evolution.

What the Kyle McLaughlin, Oprah? Everyone gets a car but me?

Crying Child Theory of Evolution:
In the wild, as a predator approaches, a mother will absolutely not tolerate a crying cub.  To allow the infant to continue crying would be to jeopardize the safety of the entire pack.  She would kill the infant before that happened.  So, in a way, by marrying an unintelligent woman, you are creating the possibility that someday you will murder your son to ensure your own survival.  Imagine a scenario in which you, your wife and your toddler son enjoy a day at the local immigration office.  Terror breaks out when a disgruntled ESL student opens fire, maiming and killing fellow immigrants.  You are able to move your family to safety in a boiler room, but the killer is still on the prowl.  Your toddler son wails away in well-warranted fear though it is imperative that he be quiet.  You sternly instruct him to be silent, your voice thick with the sort of serious tone that a brighter child (or fox cub) might instantly recognize and understand as time for him to shut up.  But wait, you married a dumb woman.  And she gave those damned, dirty genes to your son.  And now he is the reason your wife and most importantly, you, will meet your demise (since you probably won’t kill him, as alluded to above).  Another dumb family wiped off the planet.  So, the distillation of this theory essentially states that “An intellectually gifted individual who chooses to breed with another human of greatly inferior intelligence de-leverages himself against the rest of his species w/r/t survival of the fittest.  Though he himself is fit, the unfitness of his family unit ensures failure.”  For anyone wondering about my brain, I developed the theory this week on an Uptown 4 train in which a child wailed incessantly.  I wondered first if I would be able to recognize my future child’s needs based on the tenor of his crying.  Then I started to think about what a liability this subway child would be in olden, tribal times.


El Hans

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