What Movies Teach Us – Greg Stucky

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  • Human Behavior
    • A man will show no pain while taking the most ferocious beating but will wince when a woman tries to clean his wounds.
    • Any person waking from a nightmare will sit bolt upright and pant.
    • If you decide to start dancing in the street, everyone you bump into will know all the steps.
    • It is common to be able to sneak up behind a person while the bathroom cabinet door is opened, but never to touch them in that given amount of time.
    • It is not necessary to say hello or goodbye when beginning or ending phone conversations.
    • Male human beings almost never undress to have sex, or if they finally do it, they are samples of the species with no visible genitals.
    • Mothers routinely cook eggs, bacon and waffles for their family every morning even though their husband and children never have time to eat them.
    • No matter how suspicious a person acts in a public place, the only person who may notice will be who that person is trying to avoid.
    • No one involved in a car chase, hijacking, explosion, volcanic eruption or alien invasion will ever go into shock.
    • Studying for tests and working out goes into a montage.
    • There are no negative repercussions for trying to stop an airplane from taking off with a loved one on board.
    • Wearing a uniform of a service industry worker is the only means of identification necessary to access a restricted building.
    • Wearing glasses will disguise almost anyone from even their closest friends.
    • When paying for a taxi, don’t look at your wallet as you take out a bill. Just grab one at random and hand it over. It will always be the exact fare.
    • White people walking into black-dominated bars will make the DJ’s record scratch while everyone stares in stunned silence.
    • With enough perseverance, most skills that normally would take years can be learned in a matter of months with enough heart and if the competition is evil.
    • Women with glasses on and their hair up are significantly less attractive, and undergo a complete makeover by taking the glasses off and putting the hair down.
  • Modern Culture
    • If being chased through town, you can usually take cover in a passing St. Patrick’s Day parade at any time of the year.
    • Television news bulletins usually contain a story that affects you personally at that precise moment.
    • The Eiffel Tower can be seen from any window in Paris.
    • Traveling between any two points in New York City will always take you past the Statue of Liberty, Lincoln Center, Washington Square Park, and the New York Public Library.
  • Foreign Cultures
    • An Asian crime lord will always have a beautiful daughter named “Jade” or “Lotus Blossom”.
    • Should you wish to pass yourself off as a German officer, it will not be necessary to speak the language. A German accent will do.
    • When they are alone, all foreigners prefer to speak English to each other. This includes alien races.
  • Government & Law Enforcement
    • A detective can only solve a case once he has been suspended from duty.
    • Any pair of handcuffs can be picked with a paperclip by anyone, given enough time.
    • During all police investigations it will be necessary to visit a strip club at least once.
    • DNA evidence only takes seconds to decipher.
    • If an imminent natural disaster or killer beast threatens your town, the mayor’s first concern will be the tourist trade or his forthcoming art exhibition.
    • Police Departments give their officers personality tests to make sure they are deliberately assigned a partner who is their total opposite.
    • The Chief of Police will always suspend his star detective or give him 48 hours to finish the job.
  • Guns, Combat & Warfare
    • All bombs are fitted with electronic timing devices with large red readouts so you know exactly when they’re going to go off.
    • Being evil creates an ocular disorder that makes firing at an enemy very difficult, thus shooting the area around him is more common than successfully hitting the target.
    • Explosives are relatively easy to come by, meaning they’re used liberally. This is independent of economic factors.
    • Gun clips adjust in size according to the confidence level of the protagonist.
    • Gun fights usually involve either heavy casualties against a select few individuals, or a grazed bullet wound to a non-vital extremity when severely outnumbered.
    • If you need to reload your gun, you will always have more ammunition – even if you haven’t been carrying any before now.
    • It does not matter if you are heavily outnumbered in a fight involving martial arts. Your enemies will wait patiently to attack you one by one by dancing around in a threatening manner until you have knocked out their predecessors.
    • It is a fairly easy task to shoot a gun out of a person’s hand.
    • Most guns are as disposable as the bullets, and should be thrown away once emptied.
    • Very large machine guns are hollowed out inside, making them very light and easy to aim with one hand.
    • You’re very likely to survive any battle in any war unless you make the mistake of showing someone a picture of your sweetheart back home.
  • Science & Medicine
    • An electric fence powerful enough to kill a dinosaur will cause no lasting damage to an eight-year-old child.
    • Antidotes, once discovered, are replicated and distributed to the populace at large within the course of an hour.
    • Defibrillators can revive a person who has been dead for up to half an hour, provided CPR was not successful.
    • If a defibrillator is not accessible, CPR will revive a person with no repercussions up to five minutes after a person has stopped breathing.
    • The average hotel pool is deep enough for a person to survive falling from any floor.
    • Urination can be halted if there are other emergencies taking place.
    • When a person is knocked unconscious by a blow to the head, they will never suffer a concussion or brain damage, and wake up a convenient time later.
  • History
    • It doesn’t matter how many centuries an archaeological find has been hidden, there will always be at least several torches near the entrance that have stayed lit.
    • Medieval peasants had perfect teeth.
  • Future
    • Although in the 20th century it is possible to fire weapons at an object out of our visual range, people of the 23rd century will have lost this technology.
    • By the 23rd century, everyone in the human race will be beautiful. Humanity will compensate for this by having the populace wear awful clothing.
    • Zombies have an instinct that draws them to surviving humans, even across hundreds of miles of distance.
  • Consumer Products
    • A single match will be sufficient to light up a room the size of Wembley Stadium.
    • All beds have special L-shaped cover sheets that reach up to the armpit level on a woman but only to waist level on the man lying beside her.
    • All grocery shopping bags contain at least one loaf of French bread.
    • Any lock can be picked by a credit card or a paper clip in seconds – unless it’s the door to a burning building with a child trapped inside.
    • Chess games are usually completed at a convenient time, with the winner usually being the more interesting person.
    • Cigarettes are Smokes brand, and they dominate the market completely. The same market domination takes place with Beer brand beer.
    • Flashlights are all cheaply manufactured, and last about forty seconds before they either break or run out of charge.
    • Grocery stores pack their food only in paper bags, and always overstuff the bags to show food sticking out of the top.
    • Hats are capable of staying on, even at high speeds and through fights.
    • High-end real estate can be rented by a group of lower income workers, provided they are quirky enough.
    • If a large pane of glass is visible, someone will be thrown through it before long.
    • Kitchens don’t have light switches. When entering a kitchen at night, you should open the fridge door and use that light instead.
    • Once applied, lipstick will never rub off – even while scuba diving.
    • Playing video games successfully is a matter of swaying side to side, grunting and rapidly pressing random buttons.
    • The ventilation system of any building is the perfect hiding place because no one will ever think of looking for you in there and you can travel to any other part of the building you want without difficulty.
    • You can always find a chainsaw when you need one.
  • Computers & Technology
    • A computer virus affects a computer just like a human, and smoke will billow out of the monitor and tower after a successful upload.
    • All restricted data has an override function.
    • All telephone numbers in America begin with the digits 555.
    • Calling someone to relay information takes three seconds for ten minutes’ worth of information if it is highly relevant to share.
    • Cell phone batteries never die, and have built-in technology to keep them from losing signal unless there is something critically important being said.
    • Computer monitors display all text in at least 42 point font.
    • Computers contain incredibly powerful text-based command shells that can understand and execute commands typed in plain English.
    • Computers never crash unless directly sabotaged. Programs never have glitches or bugs unless tampered with.
    • Countdown timers only work accurately when being watched.
    • Data disks are always compatible with every computer they are inserted into.
    • Deleting a file from one computer immediately deletes it from a network, and there is no backup or means to undelete files.
    • Fingerprint scanners can scan a poor recovered print to find one specific match across all fingerprint databases in a matter of seconds.
    • Hacking a computer involves typing very quickly with no mistakes, which controls mouse movement as well.
    • High-grade computer systems have simple and easily understandable graphical interfaces.
    • Laptop computers always have exceptional real-time video chatting ability combined with the power of a server.
    • Most laptop computers are powerful enough to override the communication systems of any invading alien civilization.
    • Networked computers can be accessed even when the computer is turned off.
    • No matter how powerful a computer is, it will beep at any input or change in output. Output will only be as fast as a person can read.
    • Panels on computers have thousands of flash pots under their keyboards.
    • Passwords can be guessed within two tries when adequately skilled in hacking.
    • Phones give a dial tone as soon as the other person hangs up.
    • Photographs can be manipulated on a computer indefinitely, and the most obscure details can be extracted from the smallest parts of the photo.
    • Screens are projected so brightly that they show a reflection on the user’s face.
    • Surveillance cameras always have soft timestamps, and can be enhanced indefinitely.
    • The more high-tech the equipment, the more buttons it has. No matter what operating capacity, every button is labeled.
    • The size of the data being processed is irrelevant, and all data will be processed or transferred within seconds.
    • When typing long sentences, the spacebar is never used. Data is always automatically saved.
    • Word processors never display a cursor on screen but will always say Enter Password Now.
  • Vehicles
    • Automotive frames are practically indestructible, and can enable cars to drive on two wheels or hit other cars indefinitely.
    • Being against the protagonist creates a fear of fully opening the throttle.
    • Buses can easily be disappeared behind.
    • Cars never need gas, and can go for hundreds of miles with the throttle wide open.
    • Cars that crash will almost always burst into flames.
    • Dodging through traffic is always possible.
    • Even when driving down a perfectly straight road it is necessary to turn the steering wheel vigorously from left to right every few moments.
    • It is always possible to park directly outside the building you are visiting.
    • It’s easy for anyone to land a plane, providing there is someone in the control tower to talk you down.
    • Most cars have a set of keys hidden above the visor.
    • Tires sound like rubber burning on asphalt, even on gravel roads.
    • When a car goes airborne, it will defy gravity if it is being chased. It will always land with no damage.