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Saturday, October 2, 2021


By Caroline Clemmons

We all know a self-proclaimed expert we can’t avoid. Likely he or she is a relative, sometimes a co-worker. Talking about this with my husband reminded me of a funny story. Several years ago, my friend Jennifer told me this tale:

Although Jennifer’s husband Bryan is a nice man, his brother Mike is a bore who considers himself the authority on any subject. Since Mike has a college degree and Jennifer doesn’t, apparently Mike enjoys regaling her with details of everything. 

She says it’s as if he thinks he’s an expert who feels compelled to educate her. His tone of voice indicates derision, as if she is too dumb to know anything. (Actually, I’ve always found her to be clever.)

One day when Jennifer’s nerves were on edge after an exhausting day at work, Mike dropped in for a visit. In conversation he pointed out that Jennifer—a working mom with two young kids—needed to dust the spider webs from her light fixture. His comment snapped Jennifer's last frayed nerve.

She said, “That’s not a spider web—it’s a cob web." She paused and looked at him. "Oh, I’m sure you know cobs are quite different from spiders.”

Surprisingly, Mike shook his head.

Jennifer wove a story about the minute cob species, their habits, and benefits. By the time she had finished her explanation, the cob approached being the benefit to many of the earth’s problems.

When she told me the story, her eyes twinkled. “I wonder how many people Mike has informed about the work of cobs.”



  1. Lol. The landlady we used to rent a house from always just said, "Don't look up," when the subject of cobwebs came up. I think your friend had a better idea.

  2. That's awesome! Those people who think they know more....grrr...I'm not a fan.

  3. Makes me remember the time my sister convinced a know-it-all Yankee that the big bails of hay in fields were the fruit of the hay bush. Wonder how many people think that now, too.

  4. I was chuckling. I read Stephanie's comment and almost did a spit take with my lime water. Too funny.

  5. Or the time my 5 year-old brother saw a cow attempting to expel the placenta. He asked Dad if that was butterfat. "Yes," Dad said in that authoritative tone. Of course, when my brother went to school, he got in trouble for not drinking his milk. It came in a carton and "4% Butterfat" was written on the side.

  6. Lol...good post. I always told my city cousins that chocolate milk came from the bull. My dad would get so annoyed with me.

  7. That is so funny! These days, we have more Google experts and Facebook Doctors than ever- It really gets old and is so annoying. I will say though that google will never replace good old common sense or critical thinking.


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