I can’t turn it off

While walking down the street on a date…

Random woman: …so I’ve been thinking about using something homeopathic to…
Me: *ears perk up* *gives Date the “Someone Just Said Something Very Stupid” look*
Date: *laughs* Down, girl.
Me: But…but… It’s like my superpower.
Date: Your spidey sense tingles whenever someone believes something stupid.
Me: I can’t help it!


  1. briannelson says

    Hah! So, does it manifest with glowing lines around your head, like in the comic, or is it just rising bile?

  2. Nice Ogress says

    Arrgh. This Spring I had the joyless experience of trying, patiently, to explain to my remaining Parental Unit that not only does Homeopathy not work, but that it actively does harm and bilks gullible people out of their money and she should STOP USING IT.

    She just smiled and nodded and I felt like beating my head on the table.

  3. Andrea says

    I always feel like the average person must have no clue what homeopathy actually is, otherwise they would think it was nuts.

  4. Cuttlefish says

    How do you stop yourself from hitting yourself in the forehead with something blunt and massive?

  5. says

    I’ve always been cynical & skeptical of things, but I’d never heard of homeopathy until I started reading & posting regularly in the skeptic community (I always just assumed it was the same as naturopathy, which is just as useless, but seems less “out there” than homeopathy).

  6. schism says

    Racism and sexism are no less ridiculous if you put any real thought into them (which is probably why people tend to not do that).

  7. Jurjen S. says

    Brownie points to your date for knowing you well enough to recognize your “Someone Just Said Something Very Stupid” look, and what it entails.

  8. Morpheus91 says

    I’m imagining you living in our current world is something rather like that scene from Sherlock Holmes where he’s sitting in the restaurant unable to relax because of all the details he is sensing. :D

    Amusingly, my girlfriend and I do the same thing in reverse; she has to tell me to chill when I start “hunting” (her word choice) stupid people.

  9. Daniel Schealler says

    Ha! I totally do this too.

    Random Patron: …. but then I realized he was a Scorpio, and…
    Me: *eye twitches*
    Girlfriend: What’s wrong?
    Me: … Nothing.
    GF: Wait – it’s that guy, isn’t it.
    Me: … No.
    GF: *laughs*
    GF: It totally is! What’s the matter with you?
    Me: *thinks*
    Me: SIWITR.
    GF: What?
    Me: Someone Is Wrong In This Restaurant.
    GF: *eyebrow*
    GF: You’re so lucky I was in love with you before you said that.
    Me: *hides smirk, hangs head*
    Me: Yeah. I know.

  10. Erulóra Maikalambe says

    This happened to me recently at a restaurant. Only it was acupuncture on a dog, instead of homeopathy. It was hard to resist the strong urge to tell them they were stupid.

  11. kim says

    I didn’t know “self righteous, I’m better than you, eyerolling shrugs” were now considered a superpower. Anyway, I am sure your show of superiority really impressed your gf.

  12. Tabby Lavalamp says

    It wasn’t a superpower, but I was quite proud of the time I corrected a couple I overheard at the Royal Tyrrell Museum talking about Darwin “converting on his deathbed”.

  13. says

    I can’t begin to tell you how many times Jodi has elbowed me or otherwise tried to keep me from spouting off at random strangers.

    Was at a Boston Pizza the other day and almost went into a rant at the wait staff about how “organic foods” use just as much pesticides as non-organic, only they use different ones, from natural sources, and in quantities and controls such that they might even in some circumstances do more damage. I caught an elbow in the ribs, because she thought I was going to go off about all the other woo attendant to the organic movement, like “biodynamic agriculture”.

    I gotta write a post on that one of these days.

  14. Morpheus91 says

    kim, why don’t you take your righteous indignation elsewhere. :) While I’m sure your (lack of a) sense of humor adds a lot to many conversations, in this case it distracts from people relating humorous anecdotes that show appreciation for their significant others.

  15. Midnight Rambler says

    Most people seem to think that homeopathy is the same as herbal medicine. Most of which also don’t do much, but at least they potentially might. When you explain it to them, they’re often surprised.

  16. Pete Knight says

    I worked with a MSF pharmacist in Sudan who defended homeocrapathy, I don’t think she really knew what it was either, the debate got too heated to allow me to ask her what she thought it was, I believe most people think it’s some sort of natural remedy, not watered down bullshit!

  17. hoverfrog says

    Never leave home without your iPod to block out the sounds of other people saying stupid things. I also recommend reading a book while you walk so that you can’t see them either. I’d never make it to work if it wasn’t for these two things.

  18. Jurjen S. says

    a figure of speech in which two unlike things are explicitly compared, as in “she is like a rose.” Compare metaphor.

    Jen didn’t say it was a superpower, she it was “like [her] superpower”; note the “like,” indicating that she doesn’t actually consider it to be a superpower, but rather, the closest thing to a superpower she possesses. Your own ability to maintain a cranial-rectal inversion, by contrast, does qualify as being a superpower, albeit a particularly useless one.

  19. Ganner says

    I had a group of friends, 4 or 5 and all intelligent and well educated, all insisting to me that homeopathy is “just herbal medicine.” It actually got a bit tense when I tried to argue because they all thought I was crazy and were basically laughing at me for refusing to just say “ok I guess you’re right.”

  20. The Lorax says

    The best thing to do in a homeopathic situation is to throw some math at them. Examples:

    Consider a can of soda, your average 12oz can. 12oz = 0.355 liters. One liter is one-thousandth of a cubic meter. Do the math, we can imagine a soda can to fill up a sphere with a diameter of 0.088 of a meter. This is just shy of 10 centimeters, or about 3.5 inches for those of you who don’t like metric. About the size of a softball. Following me? Good.

    A 1C solution is diluting that soda can into a sphere of water 16″ in diameter, about the size of a small beach ball. Not too bad, right? Lets jump up a bit.

    3C solution is that can of soda diluted into a sphere of water 17 meters in diameter. That’s about 18 yards, shy of one fifth of a football field. Kind of hard to imagine, so try this: A 3.424C solution is that can of soda poured into an Olympic-sized swimming pool.

    Moving up a bit more. I’ve seen dilutions between 3C and 6C, and these are fairly common… well I just did 3C, so lets hit the “high” end of that scale. What does 6C mean, in terms of our can of soda?

    Here, try this. Next time you go to the beach, take a can of soda and dump it into the ocean. Wait a few years for it to really mix up good, then you’ve got yourself a 6.3C solution. Yes, one can of soda dumped into the oceans of Earth is a mere 6.3C.

    That should be enough to shock most homeopathic people. But if you want to put that last nail in the coffin, here’s one:

    The current distance from Earth to the edge of the observable universe is about 45.7 billion light years, or about 4.3×10^26 meters. This is the radius we’re talking about, so the diameter is twice that. Creating a 42C solution would mean dumping a can of soda into a sphere with a diameter of.. 8.78×10^26 meters.

    Let me reiterate. A 42C solution is equivalent to diluting a can of soda into a sphere of water the size of the observable universe.

    Suck on that.

  21. Drakk says

    Unfortunately, homeopathy’s shtick is that more dilution = higher potency. Throw all that math at them and if their feeble minds understand it, they’ll understand it to be a good thing.

  22. fastlane says

    Heh, my wife and I had a similar exchange last night.

    Background: We both used to work as math and science tutors, and that’s actually how we met.

    So the group next to us at the restaurant was doing physics homework and one of the guys was saying loudly enough for us to overhear that he kept getting a different (I think he said ‘wrong’) answer from the book. My wife asked if I wanted to go help them and I said no.

    She then asked if it bothered me that they might be doing it wrong, at which point the infamous XKCD comic went through my head….

    “Nope, they’ll work it out on their own.”

    I think she still might be obsessing over it, but she’s got a masters thesis to work on, so hopefully, she’s forgotten by now. =)

  23. Didaktylos says

    Someone ought to ask these homeopathy proponents what they do “purify” the diluting water of all the (literal and metaphorical) Sierra Hotel Indigo Tango it picked up in the course of its prior career …

  24. Svlad Cjelli says

    It’s sort of like sympathetic puppet cursing, wherein torturing the poison will evoke the ailing’s surrender.

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